But with the growing popularity of open-plan kitchens, customers still demand them in kitchens where a range hood would obstruct a clear view. On the manufacturer side, the advent of new filtration technology means users can expect better performance from a downdraft vent. In the first kind, a vent is built into the middle of an induction or radiant electric cooktop. This especially makes sense for indoor grills and teppanyaki burners, which are in demand for high-end kitchens.This setup has a teppanyaki grill, a wok burner, and a traditional induction burner with two vents. Over the years, downdraft ranges gained a reputation for being difficult to install and not very effective. Modern versions can even be set up for recirculation, so an external vent is no longer necessary. Steam and smells get pulled straight from pots and pans and into a vent—which either exhausts or filters and recirculates the air. You can install it in between two different kinds of burners, or put one on either side of a single burner for more airflow.
Ask The Experts: Are Downdraft Ranges All Hot Air? by reviewed.com
Is Downdraft Ventilation A Worthy Upgrade? | Duration 1 Minutes 35 Seconds This week’s questions are all about downdraft ranges, which vent cooking odors and smoke through a fan built into a cooktop’s surface, rather than up above in a range hood. Why do downdraft ranges have such a bad reputation? For one thing, they can’t move much air without extinguishing gas burners. More importantly, the downdraft fans are constantly fighting basic physics. That’s why most kitchen ventilation is installed above the cooking surface. Your only real alternative would be to install a standalone pop-up ventilation system, which sits behind a cooktop and rises up only when needed. This is a good solution if you live in a home where it’s impossible to vent your kitchen to the outside due to cramped quarters or building codes. Still, you should know that recirculation has its drawbacks. Any other installation will require some compromises—but those are the tradeoffs of turning a dream kitchen into reality. An earlier version of this article said that pop-up ventilation systems can fit behind ranges. In general, downdraft ranges get a lot of complaints because it’s impossible for a downdraft’s airflow to be as effective as traditional ventilation. As it stands, customers often complain of flickering flames when the fan is on. In contrast, a downdraft range must pull air against its natural tendency, and it tends to do a poor job. These can be pretty expensive, and require some remodeling—but they come in many styles, are made by multiple manufacturers, and can be compatible with different kinds of cooktops. Indeed, the newest downdraft ranges all come with recirculation kits, which don’t require an external vent. Recirculation also doesn’t pull conditioned air out of a kitchen, which can save on heating and cooling bills. The best choice for kitchen ventilation will always be a vented range hood, which is why commercial kitchens have such strict building code requirements.