View Poll Results: Does your stovetop vent hood vent outside?

Voters
46. You may not vote on this poll
  • Of course it does!

    27 58.70%
  • Uh, I thought it should but I just checked and it only recirculates the air.

    1 2.17%
  • What on earth are you ranting about?

    0 0%
  • Mine only recirculates, but I already knew that. What's the big deal?

    14 30.43%
  • I wouldn't know. I don't have time to cook.

    0 0%
  • I need to get my thyroid checked.

    4 8.70%
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Results 1 to 10 of 22
  1. #1
    twowhat? is offline Diamond level (5000+ posts)
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    Feb 2009
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    9,847

    Default Range hood vent question

    So - I just dropped $60 for someone to come by and tell me that the vent built into our microwave (above the stovetop) only RECIRCULATES air and doesn't vent it outside. Our stove is on an outside wall and there is a vent there, but it works only with a downdraft cooktop.

    So I finally figured out that the previous owners, when they replaced the counters to sell the home, put the cheapest cooktop they could find in there WITHOUT a downdraft vent, put a piece of plywood over the hole in the back of the lower cabinet where it should've vented, and stuffed a towel in the vent exit on the outside of the house (to prevent critter intrusion?).

    Initially I was but then the service tech told me that MOST homes (at least here) have vents that only RECIRCULATE the air. Sure enough, I asked a friend of mine about her vent hood and indeed - it only recirculates the air!

    In order to get it to vent outside, we would either have to 1) replace the cooktop with one that has a downdraft vent (expensive) or 2) have a contractor run a vent through the roof of the house and add all the metal piping/hardware etc necessary to vent the stovetop from above (even more expensive, plus we would need to figure out how to work that around the microwave). In our old home, it definitely vented outside (you could see the pipe running through the cabinet above the stove, through the attic and through the roof).

    Is it just me or is that just about the dumbest thing on the face of the earth?? Shouldn't a vent hood vent, uh, OUTSIDE? Where all the smoke from cooking should go? I really wanted to be able to start searing some meat to braise in my dutch oven during the day or use a grill pan on the stovetop! So now I'm curious - do you have a vent hood that actually vents outside or does it just recirculate? And if you don't know and you have just checked - were you surprised? (The way you can tell is if you turn on the fan and check all around to see if you can feel air coming out from somewhere else - the service tech said sometimes people will even install them to recirculate the air BEHIND the stove rather than out in front of it). The other way to tell - if your stove is not on an outside wall and doesn't have anything structural to allow a vent pipe to run all the way up through the ceiling.

    Wait for the poll!!
    Last edited by twowhat?; 06-12-2012 at 02:52 PM.
    6-year-old twin girls

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    California
    Posts
    22,684

    Default

    This rental actually does vent outside. Our first home vented outside and when we gutted to kitchen in the second one I insisted on a vent to the outside (ended up being easy as I placed the range within inches of an existing vent to the exterior so it just required a flexible connector to hook it up.).

    Sometimes the vent runs through a soffit and people tear down the soffit for aethestic reasons. Then they end up installing a recirculating fan. And some places just have no vent to start with. Down drafts aren't the greatest vents anyway so you might not notice that much difference between recirculating and downdraft.

    Catherine

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    the Island of Sodor
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    9,745

    Default

    ours (between 2 halves of the stove) vents to outside for sure. it's not on an outside wall, but the vents, piping etc are there. it goes down first (there are cabinets under the stove, and the piping takes up most of that cabinet space).

    eta: ours looks very much like this (except our stove is not on the kitchen island part)
    http://handyman-do-it-yourself.com/w...chenisland.jpg

    i'd be annoyed too..i use the fan all the time..especially useful when something in toaster oven or whatever gets burned (crumbs/pieces spilling and falling, getting burned) and i dont' want the smoke alarm to be set off!!
    Last edited by ♥ms.pacman♥; 06-12-2012 at 03:09 PM.
    DS 01/10 DD 03/11

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    919

    Default

    Ours does now. The plumbing was all in place, but the pipe was literally held together with duct tape (which should not be used), and there was no suction at all. FIL replaced everything and it works great now.

  5. #5
    codex57 is offline Emerald level (3000+ posts)
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    Apr 2007
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    Default

    To my knowledge, most if not all microwave "vents" just recirculate. That's the primary reason I don't like them.

    Course, it depends on your style of cooking. For ours, we need a STRONG vent so even one that actually vents outside might not work for us.

  6. #6
    Giantbear is offline Sapphire level (2000+ posts)
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    Mar 2010
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    NYC area
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by codex57 View Post
    To my knowledge, most if not all microwave "vents" just recirculate. That's the primary reason I don't like them.

    Course, it depends on your style of cooking. For ours, we need a STRONG vent so even one that actually vents outside might not work for us.
    not all, you can buy one with a regular vent, my ge cafe line has a strong regular vent which vents to a roof top vent
    Proud father of dd 5-30-10

  7. #7
    SnuggleBuggles is offline Black Diamond level (25,000+ posts)
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    Sep 2005
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    We don't have one at all. We should, but we don't. It's on the to-do list and we almost bought one last year but got overwhelmed with choices and the work involved to get it in. It would only recirculate; its on an inside wall.
    ds1 '02
    ds2 '07

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    New England.
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    4,530

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    Ugh. Our Thermador downdraft range just broke a few weeks ago, and when I looked into replacing it, I found that Jenn-air is the only option now, and Jenn-air sucks. We also had an over-the-rage microwave that recirculates, and decided to buy a regular range, plug up the downdraft, and just use the microwave "vent".

    I did discover that many recirc venting microwaves can be changed to vent to the outside. I'm not sure about ours, as it's >10 years old. Our range is on an inside wall, so to vent to the outside will be a big deal. We want to do it someday, though.

    If it was on an outside wall, we'd do it ASAP. We both cook a lot.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
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    Mine's kinda bad...it vents into our garage. We knew this when we bought the house though, it's pretty obvious there is a ventilation pipe coming out of the kitchen wall pointed towards the garage ceiling. We still haven't fixed it and have owned the house over 4 years, even though it is on DH's "list".

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Utah.
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    4,082

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    Ours used to recirculate, but we replaced it a few years ago and vented it outside.
    Daniele
    mama to
    dd1 watching over her brothers and sister from Heaven
    ds1 my adorable 8 year old
    dd2 my sweet 5 year old
    ds2 safely arrived 12/12/11 at 36 weeks
    Placenta Increta/c-hyst survivor

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