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Range Hood Buying Guide – Glossary

A range hood or vent hood keeps your kitchen smelling fresh. Discover the variety of ventilation methods available for your kitchen.



Airflow Capacity
The greater the airflow capacity, the better the venting or circulating. This is measured in cubic feet per minute.


Airflow Method

  • Single Propeller: Rotates and moves the air - just like a fan.
  • Double Propeller: Two fans provide more air flow.
  • Blower Wheel: Stronger than the propeller. It has a higher airflow capacity.
  • Twin Blower Wheel: Maximum airflow capacity.


CFM (cubic feet per minute)
This is the measurement used to rate air movement. The higher the CFM, the more air is moved out of your house by your range hood.


Fan Speed Settings
Choose from a variety of settings. Higher settings move more air and are more efficient for heavy cooking. Hoods can have anywhere from 1 to 6 fan speeds. Three speeds is standard. Some range hoods have variable speed.


Range hood come with replaceable filters, made from multi-layer polyester, charcoal or fiberglass, which help trap grease and odours. Your filter should be changed regularly or according to the manufacturer’s guidelines. Some hoods come with an indicator light to notify you when it is time to change the filter.


Noise is measured in sones. One sone is approximately the sound of a running refrigerator. Four sones is the sound of a normal conversation and eight sones is equal to light traffic noise. The higher the CFM, the higher the sone rating your range hood will have. Some hoods come with extra insulation to reduce noise.


Speed Control
There are several methods for controlling the speed of the fan:

  • On-Off rocker switch
  • Two-speed rocker switch: off/low/high
  • Variable speed: a knob, slide control or electronic control, just a tap-touch is all it takes


Thermostat Control
A built-in temperature sensor can detect if the temperature below the hood gets too high and automatically shutoff. This feature is not available on all range hoods.


Venting Options

  • Re-circulating Venting (Interior): The air is cleaned through a charcoal filter and re-circulates in the house.
  • Exterior Venting: The air is sent outside of the house.


This extremely handy light can brighten and lighten your work surface. It can also be left on at night to provide a cheery little nightlight for your kitchen. The settings are On/Off, High and Low. Better models have variable settings.