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The Ultimate Guide to 30 and 36-Inch Range Hoods

June 16, 2023 8 min read

Range hoods are essential appliances in any kitchen space. They perform the important task of removing pollutants from the kitchen, such as smoke, grease, and strong cooking odors. If you're looking for a new range hood, you'll probably be confronted with an overwhelming selection of models with various features and options.

One of the most important factors to consider before buying a range hood is its size, with the two most common sizes being the 30 and 36-inch hoods. In this guide, we’ll look at 30 and 36-inch range hoods, exploring them, the benefits of each hood size, and factors to consider before choosing the hood size for your kitchen.

Before we dive in, a brief introduction to all the types of range hood sizes is necessary.

Understanding Range Hood Sizes

One of the most important considerations when selecting a range hood is its size. The size of a range hood is typically measured by the width of the hood, which is the distance from one end of the hood to the other. For example, a 30-inch range hood is 30 inches wide.

Range hoods come in various sizes, but you will see some standard sizes more often than others. The most common hood sizes are 30 inches, 36 inches, 42 inches, and 48 inches. There are also custom sizes like 20, 24, and 27 inches, depending on your kitchen setup and the width of your stove or cooktop.

It is crucial to ensure that the range hood's size corresponds to the cooktop size it is intended to be paired with. A range hood that is too small will not effectively capture and remove smoke, grease, and other cooking byproducts, while a range hood that is too large may be unnecessarily expensive and take up too much space in the kitchen.

30-Inch Range Hoods

30-Inch Range Hoods

30-inch range hoods are one of the market's most common and widely available range hood sizes. They are made to fit over standard cooktops or stoves 30 inches wide and are often found in small to medium-sized kitchens.

A 30-inch range hood typically has a width of 30 inches and a depth of around 18 to 24 inches, depending on the model. The hood contains a fan and filter system that removes smoke, steam, and cooking odors from the air and vents them outside or recirculates the air back into the kitchen.

They are not expensive, and their handy size makes them much simpler to install. However, their size means they cannot properly vent large cooktops. They come in different styles, including wall-mounted, island-mounted, and under-cabinet hoods.

36-Inch Range Hoods

36-inch range hoods are designed to vent spaces with large air volumes, often containing extensive cooking ranges and stoves. They can remove smoke, heat, and strong odors from large kitchens and kitchens with high ceilings. The large size of the vent hoods on 36-inch range hoods allows the installation of more powerful range hood inserts with stronger blowers. They are often significantly more expensive than 30-inch hoods, and their large size means they cannot be installed in kitchens with limited space.

Types of 30-Inch and 36-Inch Range Hoods

Several types of 30-inch and 36-inch range hoods are available on the market. Here are some common types and their brief explanations:

Under-cabinet Range Hoods

These are designed to be installed under the cabinet and are an excellent option if you don't want a range hood that protrudes from the wall. They come in various styles and sizes, and the airflow capacity can range from 200 to 900 cubic feet per minute (CFM).

Wall-Mounted Range Hoods

As the name suggests, a wall-mounted range hood is mounted on the wall above the cooktop. They are available in various sizes and styles, and the airflow capacity can range from 400 to 1200 CFM.

Island Range Hoods

These are designed to be installed above a cooktop on an island. They are suspended from the ceiling and come in various sizes and styles. The airflow capacity of an island hood can range from 400 to 1200 CFM.

Downdraft Range Hoods

These range hoods are designed to pull smoke and cooking fumes down through the cooktop and exhaust them through ducts beneath the floor. They are the best range hoods if you want a discrete ventilation unit in your kitchen.

Insert Range Hoods

These are designed to be installed into a custom hood enclosure or a decorative hood shell. They are often regarded as luxury range hoods as they are a great option if you want to customize the look of your range hood.

Benefits of a 30-Inch Range Hood

Whether you are remodeling or looking for an upgrade, a 30-inch range hood is a top-notch size option for homeowners who want to balance the benefits of a compact look with the functionality of a range hood. In this context, we will explore the major benefits of installing a 30-inch range hood, like its space-saving feature, easy installation, energy-saving benefits, and cost-effectiveness.

  1. Space-saving design

Most 30-inch range hoods are compact, which offers immense space-saving benefits, especially in smaller kitchens with minimal space above the cooking area. This allows more storage space for other kitchen appliances, like a microwave, to be installed above the cooking area. 30-inch hoods are the perfect choice for homeowners who prefer a sleek, minimalist look in their kitchen.

  1. Easy installation

30-inch range hoods are relatively easy to install, often requiring one installer, with some even having DIY-friendly installation manuals an average homeowner can easily follow. Their compact size means their parts are not too bulky, and installation under walls or cabinets is considerably easier. Overall, the installation process of a 30-inch range hood makes it a convenient choice for homeowners who want to improve the air quality and safety in their kitchen without the hassle of a complicated installation process.

  1. Energy-saving benefits

Using a 30-inch range hood has secondary rather than primary energy-saving advantages. By selecting a compact range hood with the correct airflow rating for your kitchen, you can avoid using too much energy needed to operate a larger, more powerful hood. Also, most 30-inch range hoods have energy-saving features like LED lighting that lowers your utility bill and auto on/off that automatically controls how long the hood runs.

  1. Cost-effectiveness

30-inch range hoods can be the most cost-effective option for homeowners who want to provide the necessary benefits of a range hood without spending too much. Compared to oversized hoods, 30-inch models are more within the budget range of most homeowners. Their smaller size also means they are much easier to install and cost much less to maintain.

  1. Reduced noise level

When it comes to range hoods, noise is often a concern for homeowners, as the sound of the range hood can be disruptive to conversations and other activities in the kitchen. A 30-inch range hood is generally quieter than a 36-inch range hood because it has a smaller motor and fan, which produces less noise during operation.

Benefits of a 36-Inch Range Hood

36-inch hoods are the go-to for those looking for range hoods that can adequately handle larger cooking surfaces. Their larger surface area gives them many benefits, like better coverage, improved airflow, stronger suction power, and more design options for your kitchen. Below is a more detailed explainer.

  1. Better coverage for larger cooktops

One of the top benefits of using a 36-inch range hood is its optimal coverage for larger stoves and cooking ranges. With its wider surface area, a 36-inch range hood can move larger volumes of air containing cooking fumes, smoke, and grease. This is particularly beneficial in large kitchens where intense cooking occurs and constantly releases more pollutants.

  1. Versatility in kitchen design

Installing a 36-inch range hood can provide versatility in kitchen design, allowing for more flexibility in choosing different kitchen layout options. The range hood's larger size and stronger suction power make it possible to place the cooktop or range in other locations within the kitchen without worrying about the exhaust being too far away to capture cooking fumes effectively. This means that you can be more creative in your kitchen design and have more options for placing your cooktop or range without compromising on the functionality of the range hood.

  1. Improved air circulation

With a 36-inch range hood, you get improved air circulation in your kitchen, effectively removing smoke, heat, and cooking odors. The bigger vent hood can catch more airborne particles and send them outside, making the air cleaner and cooking more comfortable. Better airflow can also help keep moisture and grease from building up, improving the air quality inside and making the kitchen cleaner.

  1. Stronger suction power

Range hoods with 36-inch vent hoods generally have stronger suction power. The larger hood allows for a more powerful range hood blower and a larger filter, enabling it to capture more airborne particles and expel them outside. Stronger suction power helps more effectively remove smoke, heat, and cooking odors and also helps reduce the buildup of moisture and grease. Additionally, it can help prevent the spread of cooking fumes and particles to other parts of your home, making your kitchen a more comfortable and enjoyable place to cook.

  1. More filter options

Because of their larger size, 36-inch range hoods can accommodate a wider range of filter types, such as stainless steel baffle filters. These larger range hood filters can generally improve the effectiveness of the ventilation system. By offering various filter options, they provide more flexibility in maintenance and cleaning. Some filter types may be more suitable for certain cooking styles or environments, and having multiple options allows homeowners to choose the filter that best fits their needs.

Factors to Consider When Choosing Between 30 and 36-Inch Range Hoods

When choosing a 30 or 36-inch range hood, there are several essential features to consider, including:

  1. Kitchen Size

The size of your kitchen will play a significant role in determining the size of the range hood you require. A larger kitchen with high ceilings will need a larger range hood to ventilate the cooking area adequately. Also, if your cooktop or range is located on an island or in a corner, you may need a larger 36-inch island range hood to capture smoke and odors effectively.

  1. Stove Size

The stove size is another factor to consider when selecting a range hood. A range hood should be able to cover the entire surface area of your stove to remove smoke and other pollutants produced when cooking effectively. For example, if your stove is 36 inches wide, your range hood should be at least 36 inches wide and not an inch less.

  1. Available ventilation options

The type of ductwork and its diameter are essential factors in determining the hood size you can install. Installing ducts with large diameters will be necessary to accommodate the large volume of air that a 36-inch range hood will need to vent. A 30-inch range hood can often make do with smaller-diameter ducts; some are even ductless. It is often common to find a 36-inch sized hood as a ducted range hood and a 30-inch as a ductless hood.

  1. Cooking style and frequency

Your cooking style and frequency also determine the size of the range hood you should get. If you do much high-heat cooking or regularly prepare meals that release strong odors, you'll need a larger range hood to remove smoke and odors effectively.

  1. Hood design

When choosing between a 30 and 36-inch range hood, hood design is important. The physical shape and structure of a range hood can play a significant role in its effectiveness in capturing and removing smoke, steam, and cooking fumes from the kitchen. The design of a range hood can also impact the kitchen's overall aesthetic. Some people may prefer the sleek, compact look of a 30-inch stainless steel range hood, while others may prefer the imposing appearance of a 36-inch wall-mount range hood.

Final Thoughts

Ultimately, choosing a 30-inch and 36-inch range hood depends on your specific kitchen needs and preferences. While a 36-inch range hood can provide greater coverage and ventilation for larger cooking areas, a 30-inch range hood may be more suitable for smaller kitchens or those with limited space. Other factors, such as cooking style, available ventilation, and cooking frequency, should also be considered when deciding. With the proper research and careful consideration, you can find the range hood that best meets your cooking and lifestyle needs. For some of the best 30-inch and 36-inch range hoods for proper ventilation