Kitchen Exhaust Fan


Old 03-28-07, 09:39 PM
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Smile Kitchen Exhaust Fan

We have figured out that our house does not have a exhaust vent in the kitche that draws air from the inside to the outside. We can't get rid of cooking smell after cooking. Our microwave has a recirculation vent, but it does not help much except that it filters a little bit of air. Now, I am considering a vent, but I am very confused about all the terminologies. I will have GC look at our kitchen next week, but I would like to know options for my situation.

Please help us if you know about Exhaust fan.

1. Our kitchen has over the range microwave with the recirculation vent. In this case, do we need to replace the microwave with the one that has exhaust fan? I saw Microwave with Microhood, which I am not sure if this is the one. Can our existing microwave be used?

2. GC mentioned that he can cut the hole in the wall from the kitchen to the outside to create a vent. Is there anything special I need to follow? Like type of duct and length of duct. I saw some manual of microwave which specifies that only metal duct must be used.

3. Why is the microwave with recirculation vent so common in our area? It is Atlanta area. But some coworkers said that they have an exhaust fan. Having an exhaust fan can hurt something?

4. GC is from the handy man service. They said GC is an electrician. What type of GC can do this job? HVAC? Or Carpenter?

Any information would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 03-29-07, 03:27 PM
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The recircualtion vent might be another terminology for a ductless microwave...just like there are ductless range hoods. The cooking steam-smoke-odors go through a charcoal filter and get blown back into the room.

The ducted kind use a rectangular duct that usually goes up through the upper cabinet over the stove, and out the roof.

Naturally, having a house constructed with a duct is somewhat more expensive than one that doesn't have one.

If your cooking produces lots of odor you do not want and you want to make sure you are rid of it, you should ask around about cfm ratings (CUBIC FEET PER MINUTE THAT WILL BE DISCHARGED). I'm not sure what the newer over-the-range microwave ones are, but I do know that those round, through the wall, kitchen fans really push out some serious air.

*I* have one of those big box store ventless range hoods, mounted at the right height, and it has such paltry suction, that if I use the front burners that are just a litle out in front of the hood, the steam will not even be drawn backwards that little bit to go up inside the rangehood. And if my furnace comes on, the pull of the air toward the central cold air return pulls the steam further away yet, from the range hood.

So look into that cfm business. Those wall ones like I said really draw the air. In a bathroom, I have seen the same fan almost instantly clear the steamed mirror when the switch was flipped on for the wall fan!

The only down side I see with a wall unit over say a powerful range unit is that the odors would go directly up, where with the wall type, you would have the odors crossing the room perhaps. But..even if it did, the steam-smoke-odors would clear out fast.
Old 03-30-07, 06:39 AM
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Most (all that I've seen) built in micro-wave ovens can be set-up to re-circulate the exhaust air or to vent it outside.
All that it requires for outside exhaust is to remove the microwave, loosen a few screws and rotate the exhaust fan 90 degrees, install a rectangular damper on the exaust, cut a rectangular hole in the cabinet above the micro-wave and re-install the microwave.
This damper comes with new microwaves and is usually discarded if the unit is being set-up to recirculate the air.
I've got several of them in my shop.
You can probably find one at the big box store.
At that point, you can have someone cut a exhaust opening in the wall or ceiling and run ducting from the damper to the outside.
I would use metal ducting.....

hope this helps

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