Written and produced by Amy Elbert with Lucy Fitzgerald
Vent hoods are vital with today's high-powered ranges and cooktops, pulling hot air and odors out of your kitchen. They also can play a major style role, serving as a room's stunning focal point or defining a cooking zone.
Basically a ventilation system uses a powerful fan to deliver hot air, moisture, odors, and carbon monoxide to the outdoors via a duct, making your kitchen a safer and more pleasant place to be. Most systems have removable filters that catch grease and particles that could build up in a duct system and lead to fires. A hood should be at least the same width as your cooking surface, according to the Home Ventilating Institute, and mounted 18 to 30 inches above the burners.
Now that you know practical fan basics, take a look at some custom and semicustom hood designs that are simply fantastic.