The Range Hoods: Cleaning and Maintenance
The range hood in the modern kitchen has moved beyond a simple utility, as kitchen designs now frequently make the range hood a centerpiece to be admired.
Now that range hoods or vent hoods, as they are otherwise known, are taking pride of place in the kitchen, they must always look and perform their best. Vent hoods can be created from various materials, so cleaners that work for one won't be suitable for another.
Here's how to clean and maintain your range hood regardless of what materials have gone into its construction. The cleaning methods outlined below are suitable for indoor range hoods but should work just as well for outdoor-rated range hoods.
Cleaning Your Range Hood
The exterior of range hoods can be made from a range of different materials, so it's critical to choose an appropriate cleaner to avoid damaging it.
Plastic or Vinyl Stove Hoods - An all-purpose cleaner will do the trick, but so will a bowl of warm soapy water.
Stainless Steel Range Hoods - Use warm soapy water and a soft cloth.
Copper Range Hoods - Always use a quality copper cleaner.
Wooden Range Hoods - Use a soft cloth and mild detergent in warm water. Glass Range Hoods - Mild soap or detergents in warm water
Range Hood Cleaning Tips
Vent hoods attract a lot of oil, grime, and dust and need wiping down regularly to ensure they always look good.
Glass and stainless-steel stove hoods will need cleaning after every use. If they are not cleaned frequently, accumulated dust and grime can harden and be difficult to remove.
When you have finished wiping a wooden vent hood, it's critical to use a clean, dry cloth to make sure it is completely dry.
Never use gritty or harsh cleaners or bleach. These products contain chemicals that can stain or discolor your vent hood's finish. Steel wool and wire brushes will also mark and scratch the surface.
Cleaning Underneath the Range Hood
Check underneath the hood to see how much work you have in store for you there. If it seems like a lot, you should steam the inside first.
Apply some of your surface cleaner to see if it will be enough to do the job. If not, you may need to bring in the big gun cleaners, like a degreaser. Follow the instructions on your cleaner of choice, and make sure you open the windows for ventilation and wear gloves.
Strong cleaners will probably leave streaks, so you may need to wipe the area down with paper towels afterward.
Range Hood Maintenance
Stove hoods have a filter to soak up airborne particles from cooking. The range hood itself will require daily or weekly cleaning depending on its material, but the filter will only need a monthly inspection.
If it looks dirty or grimy, then it will need cleaning or replacing. Check your hoods instruction manual for how to remove a filter, as each model will be different.
Fabric and charcoal filters cannot be cleaned. Just switch them out for a fresh one and consider it job done, but only if your range hood is the ductless variety. If the exhaust ventilates outside the house, then a charcoal filter does not need replacing.
Metal filters can be cleaned with dish soap in a tub of hot water. Soak the filter for at least ten minutes before giving it a bit of a shake to dislodge debris. A sturdy bristle brush can be used to scrub off the more stubborn pieces of grime.
When you are satisfied your filter is clean, rinse it under running water and let it air dry before installing it back into the stove hood.