Do you want to learn how to vent a range hood that is on an interior wall?
Interior wall range hoods can present a few problems to venting, but in this article I present the four most common options.
In this guide, I will go over...
- Making the hood recirculating
- Venting horizontally to the outside
- Venting downwards through the basement
- And installing vertically through an attic
Let's get started with this guide!
If you are installing a range hood on an interior wall, you have a few different venting options...
One thing homeowners can do is to just make the hood recirculating. A recirculating range hood doesn't vent to the exterior, it recirculates the air back inside.
To make a hood recirculating, a special grease filter must be used that has a charcoal filter and an aluminum mesh. The aluminum mesh removes grease but the charcoal filter will remove smoke and odors.
I would say that 95% of the range hoods on the market can be made to be recirculating when you purchase a carbon filter.
Are recirculating range hoods better then exterior vented hoods? Definitely not.
But if venting to the exterior would create a big hassle or expense, then I would definitely consider just installing a recirculation hood. They don't vent as well as exterior vented, but they will get the job done.
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#2. Vent To Lower Level
Another option for homeowners is to install a vent to the exterior by going down a level and then horizontally to the outside.
The only problem with this strategy is that the vent must go in-between the interior wall joists, so the range hood (and oven) need to be exactly centered. If your oven and hood isn't centered correctly, then they will have to be moved so that the center of the hood lines up with the center joist space.
One great thing about this venting strategy is that you can even install a remote blower in the basement. This means that your range hood will be significantly quieter because the blower fan isn't at the hood, it is in the basement near the exterior wall.
With a remote venting application, it also frees up the kitchen cabinet space above the hood because there isn't a blower.
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#3. Venting Through Attic
Venting through an attic is also a common way to vent exhaust fans.
For this installation, the attic will need to be the next level above the kitchen, so you can go through the kitchen ceiling, through the attic and then to the roof or gable wall.
If it is installed on the roof, a special roof cover (preferably steel) will need to be installed. You can't just use a normal wall vent cover on the roof, it needs to be designed for a roof installation.
Also, since the vent is going through the attic, there is the potential of condensation forming on the vent. You can lower this risk by insulating the ductwork inside of the attic.
#4. Venting Sideways To Exterior Wall
The most common vent installation when the hood is on an interior wall is to go horizontally to the exterior.
You basically have two options, you can go through the top of the kitchen cabinets to the exterior, or you can go through the ceiling.
If the ceiling joists aren't running parallel with the duct run, then you will have to cut holes into the joists. You may or may not be able to cut holes in the joists due to the size of the joist, the type of joist (engineered vs dimensional), and the size of the vent.
Even engineered I-joists have manufacturer limitations on the size of holes that you can cut (and where on the joist). Consulting a knowledgable contractor or engineer, as well as perusing the joist manufacturer manual is highly recommended if you will be cutting joist holes.
If the joists run parallel with the vent duct, then it isn't a problem, but you will still have to cut the drywall.
Ceiling Drywall Removal
When you remove drywall, you have two options. You can remove the entire drywall section from the hood to the exterior wall. Or you can just cut two holes in the drywall at the duct entrance and near the exterior wall.
Either way, you will be cutting into drywall, and the cost of patching will need to be factored into the installation. If you install the duct in the upper kitchen cabinets, you also need to factor in that you will lose that cabinet space.
When a homeowner is faced with an interior wall range hood, the question arises as to whether they can vent to the exterior. And the answer is almost always yes.
The most common way to vent to the exterior is by going directly to the exterior wall through the ceiling cavity or going through the top of the kitchen cabinets.
Another possibility is to go down through the interior wall (in-between the joists) and then to the exterior wall in the basement or lower level. And if there is an attic above the kitchen, you can always go straight up through the attic and install the vent on the roof or gable wall.
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