Jump to content
Complete France Forum

cooker hood question


mint

Recommended Posts

My main preoccupation being the installation of my kitchen en ce moment, here's one that I hope will invite lots of answers!

I am having an island, 1800 x 1200, and am looking for a suitable hood to go over that as the hob will sit on the island.

So, what size, extraction capacity will I need?

LED lights or halogen on the hood?

What class energy is available for hoods?  I have only seen C and D so far.

I do realise that I will need one suitable for an island, not wall mounted or chimney presumably because the "funnel" will miss one side.

However, does "ceiling mounted" mean it's OK for an island?

I have tried to look beyond stainless steel as I hate the cleaning and shining and dusting and all the other "ings" that stainless steel involves.  When it comes to white or cream or, my favourite, BLACK, the choice narrows considerably.

Any advice, comments, tips, etc, svp?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Do you really need a cooker Hood? Could you not site a VMC outlet above the island?

Most of the modern cooker hoods are chosen by people for the l"ets impress someone else" factor rather than their functionality, but what one person thinks is a wow factor another finds vulgar, in terms of operation, well I have removed and sold all of my cooker hoods as I have found that a strategically sited VMC outlet is not only far more discreet but more effective, a lot quieter, uses a fraction of the power and doesnt get caked up with grease.

If you do not already have a VMC then the rest of your house may also benefit.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Interesting post from Chancer. I read your post, Mint, but as I've never had a cooker hood I thought, let's not be negative. But I just don't like them, they always seem a bit pretentious to me - sorry, those of you who have them and love the. I suppose I tend to go for simple ideas and designs.

In our little apartment in France we have the VMC taking smells away, plus I often have the door onto the balcony open, as it gets very hot with the sun streaming in, especially when it's low in winter.

In England, we have a system my husband installed in the bathroom and kitchen, which also sucks away smells. The only smell which lingers is fish, so in that case, I tend to open the door to the utility room.

So I suppose I'm in agreement with Chancer.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The ones I had before in the UK always used to get so covered in grease on all the external surfaces and the Inside filters were really yukky and smelly, and of course tenants never clean or change them.

In France I have eye level microwaves in the space vacated by the cooker hoods, they are right above the hob so by all reasoning they should also get covered in grease but they dont, the VMC outlet being above and just slightly in front must be drawing all the cooking fumes and steam away from the bottom of the microwaves just above, any grease that does get there are random splashes rather than congealed oily vapour all over.

In the UK I have a window right behind the hob where you would normally have a splashback, the VMC intake because of constraints has had to be placed some way back on the rear wall yet still the white cupboards above the hob dont get greasy, even the window doesnt steam up when cooking rice or pasta, I know that a hob extractor would not do anywhere near as good a job and would get covered in grease whilst doing so.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The problem with VMC is they go wrong. When I moved in I replaced the old VMC because the installtion looked very bodged and it did not seem to work. 2 years later I have a VMC that 'sings', so have to switch it off in the evening. I plan to cover the inlets and switch off permanently and go back to opening windows as and when. Unless you are a large family in a smallish space I am not persuaded by VMC. Just something else to go wrong. An unnecessary complication?

JFB

Link to comment
Share on other sites

TBH, and I might even have mentioned on another thread, I am in two minds whether I need a hood.

We do already have a VMC but it came with the original house built in 1990.  It must be really inefficient and outdated because, if I do any cooking at all in the evenings, I can smell the previous evening's meal the next morning[:-))]

So, Chance, do I need a new VMC, perhaps?

Or even a Vent Axia extractor fan, or a ceiling hood which has no chimney bit and should be unobtrusive?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We have 2 VMCs. One in the bathroom/loo, The other in the kitchen. The house was built in 1982 and they are both both noisey and a waste of space. The one for the bathroom/loo I had a look at and finished up fitting new bearings to the motor, less than 10€ as opposed to 120€ plus. The motor became quiet, but it's like living in a wind tunnel and totally unnecessary IMHO. When I first checked it I found it discharged straight into the loft!! I then checked the kitchen jobbie, guess what? The same. They both keep us awake at night, noy from the motor noise, but teh air noise even on the normal setting. We have never had any damp problems.

Our hob is tucked under a small chimney outlet in a corner of the kitchen and we have a 'hotte' above it. A short while back I got a LED driver and a couple of LED bulbes and changed them from the halogen that came with the hotte. They are great and I would recommend them. As for the hotte? It takes any smells away with no problems at all and the filters don't get mucky and have only been cleaned a couple of times, no need for more. Even if it was needed it isn't a difficult task..

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I only buy the cheapest VMC's now at around €45 all in, from the cheapest to the most expensive most of them fail after about 18 months after becoming less and less intrusive noise Wise, all it takes is a £1.50 capacitor to get them working again, its only the slow speed that is affected not the fast, I also have experimented with different capacitor values and now have inaudible VMC's in my rental flats, if tenants can hear them they switch them off, they cant and they dont.

Both my own flats here and in the UK are of, how can I put this? Unconventional construction (AKA bodge up) and both suffered severe damp problems before the VMC's, in fact they probably would be a health hazard without them so I am a convert.

I do know how load they can be though, especially the autoréglable ones, they have more powerfull hence more expensive and Noisy fans, I prefer the basic ones that take a few watts on the low setting, its very rare that I need to use them on the higher setting which is audible and intrusive but nothing compared to the racket of a cooker Hood or vent axia extractor fan.

A 1980's one is likely to be more reliable than a modern one, however if its Noisy, probably a autoréglable one then its Worth changing it, however if you never use it and decide on a cooker Hood then why bother?

Dont be tempted by the hygrostat models, been there done that, they switch to the Noisy high setting for days on end during damp weather like the present, I still have a couple in service but with the hygroststats set to the highest setting.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I LOVE VMC's. In french homes, my two favourite things are shutters and vmc's. I also love cooker hoods and hate the windows open especially in the kitchen.

We had one VMC that was expensive and lasted, let's say 10 to 15 years to be replaced by one that was cheap and worked just as well for the rest of our time in that house.

It was never turned off, ever. Kept the house aired, even when shut up as there were those up facing trickle vents on the windows in the rooms without the vmc in it.

There was a hum with both our vmc's but something that was not too loud and ears simply ignored. Our vmc was in our well insulated loft, would that have stopped some of the noise, although I have a feeling that ours was suspended in some way anyway.

I like my cooker hood as when I am doing smelly cooking, ie frying, or doing flavoursome cooking like indian or chinese food, or cabbage, gets those smells away rather quickly and stop them permeating into the rest of the house. I would always have one.

In this house, I wanted a VMC but it was suggested that we get one that recouoperated and filtered the 'warm' air and this air went back into one of the rooms. Having so much to do in this old house, it isn't up and running yet. We did have a cooker hood right from the beginning though.

Island cooker hoods (chimney cooker hoods) are easily available and sounds like a good idea to me, me loving them and all.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/s/?ie=UTF8&keywords=island+cooker+hood&tag=mh0a9-21&index=aps&hvadid=3171118732&ref=pd_sl_v9o2uso6j_e

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am intrigued by Chancer,s reply.  Are you simply not frying very much these days with your healthier lifestyle?

We don't have a cooker hood in France and our guests must fry a lot as I have to regularly sugar soap the walls to remove the residue.

I can believe the VMC to be good at steam removal as it's intake cowl shape is far more natural for air flow than any cooker hood I have yet seen which expects air to travel in straight lines and around 90 deg bends, obviously it will but these things are responsible for the noise the lack of actual draw the extra power etc. This is similar to the pool filter idea of some companies, mounting filters on the intake of pumps is hugely inefficient hence bigger more powerful motor are needed.

In Chancer's case I would expect oils and fats to build up in VMC pipework.  Unfortunately most people in this industry still do not know how to develop high flows at low energy.  The same with extractor fans, silly new designs arrive with a spec of 95m3/h which should remove all the air from a steamy bathroom in 2.5 mins but they don't, allowing for the dilution principles in 6 x 2.5 mins all the air has been changed i.e. 15mins but frequently because of the sharp edges unlike VMC intakes nice flow edge I have to run bathroom extractors for 25mins.

Kitchen extractors just copy and do not innovate so I wait to hear more of Chancer's exploits and experiences please.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Its true that I dont fry much at all any more, and when I do its with very little oïl but often very fatty meat like duck and always very hot so there is usually lots of smoke, thats when the VMC gets switched on to the high setting and I find it is far better at removing smoke and smells than any cooker Hood I have had or used.

I have had all the VMC's apart for open heart surgery and the impellors have a film of grease but its not a big build up, I clean the ceiling outlets maybe once a year as the dust sticks to the film of grease, my white painted ceiling has not been redone in 8 years and still looks fresh.

One thing that has stopped grease splashes and above all smells is using my table-top halogen oven as a grill, I cook duck and sausages on the highest setting and they are smoking, you can see the smoke circulating but it never comes out the top, only clean untainted moisture, I have no idea how it achives this miracle.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have discussed this with OH over breakfast and I am coming round to the idea of hoods again.

Id, it's not that I can't find island cooker hoods, it is that I am confused by the prices, the decibel level and the energy class and the weight of them!

I am going to avoid a stainless steel one if I possibly can as I have one of those now and it is the very b@@@@r to clean.  I'd like black or, failing that, cream or white, anything but stainless steel!

So, here is my wish list and it would be good if I could have some comments!

low noise level

lighting (is LED better than halogen?)

can be vented outside

filters that are machine washable

low energy class

does not cost the earth

NOT much to ask is it, guys?[:D]

Teapot, I am singling you out to give me a recommendation [I]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

[quote user="mint"]I have discussed this with OH over breakfast and I am coming round to the idea of hoods again.

Id, it's not that I can't find island cooker hoods, it is that I am confused by the prices, the decibel level and the energy class and the weight of them!

I am going to avoid a stainless steel one if I possibly can as I have one of those now and it is the very b@@@@r to clean.  I'd like black or, failing that, cream or white, anything but stainless steel!

So, here is my wish list and it would be good if I could have some comments!

low noise level

lighting (is LED better than halogen?)

can be vented outside

filters that are machine washable

low energy class

does not cost the earth

NOT much to ask is it, guys?[:D]

Teapot, I am singling you out to give me a recommendation [I]

[/quote]

Gulp! 

Well, if I were looking, i would go for one of the modern designs that fits into the island work top behind the cooker. They can disappear from sight when not in use. and the reason is the closer you get the suction the more effective it is and therefore noise levels should drop. That also means nothing overhead to bash your head on and no climbing up to clean which is hazardous in its self.

Known as downdraft hoods and B&Q have them at a bargain price for some cookers but the idea is the same.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sexy looking but is it a triumph of appearance over function?

An island by its nature cannot have external walls around it so unless you have a sous sol where is the 760m3 per hour of air going to go to?

Thats a lot of hot sticky oily air to be whistling up your kilt [:D]

I have never understood how recerculating fans are supposed to get rid of cooking smells and humidity.

But I suppose if it has the Wow! factor..................... [Www]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Unfortunately standard hob extractors IMO are also a less than triumphant appearance over function. Mine in the UK is 420m3/h and is positioned 650 above the cooker and isn't hugely effective.

Normally the downdraft type are £1500+ so B&Q have seriously hit the market. I am off to a property show on Wednesday so will have a look around and in more detail.

Activated charcoal filters remove most of anything so clean air comes out after the aluminium filters have trapped the grease.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you, dear old Teapot, coming up with the goods as usual![:)]

I'd pay that if it does what it says.  I paid  over twice that in my previous French house and, although I was mainly after the appearance, it in fact worked very well.

Anyway, the huge cooking range plus matching hood was apparently irresisistable to buyers (and yes, it's not an exaggeration to say I had a LOT of interest) and so sometimes you have to grasp the nettle and pay through the nose!!!  Sorry for the mixed metaphors but I have had a drink or two after a lot of rowing machine and hassle of one type or another and so I feel justified!

Teapot, I will be posting a new thread about built in microwaves and I know I am unashamedly picking your brains but you are so good natured, I didn't think you'd mind?[:P]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hah, perfect now you have brought out the HOB question![:D][:D]

I've always had gas hobs because I love their controlability.  However, here we do not have town gas and, whilst the bottled stuff is super economical, I am considering having an electric hob.  Is it called INDUCTION, the ones that boil 10 litres of water in 10 seconds (OK, those values may not be strictly accurate!)

My main reason for the change is to save OH the hassle of lugging bottles of gas and fiddling about changing the bottles.  Talented as he is in many directions, he always says the tubes are tricky, he can't grip them properly because of arthritis and so on[;-)]  I know we can get smaller bottles which wouldn't weigh a ton like the large ones but, in the long term, it might be me having to do the lugging and changing of bottles, etc and so it might be sensible to change to electricity now.

So, back to you, knowlegeable and generous folk, give me some info, pros and cons and in-betweens of these induction hobs? 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'll probably show up on that link, Mint. We both love our induction hobs, and my husband was waxing lyrical about them when we had lunch with friends yesterday. Both Bosch, the one here in France is a particular favourite of his, as he has it set up for porrage and coffee timings - he does still have to measure out the oats and milk/water and has to stir, but he doesn't have to time it.

We couldn't get that feature on the one in England, as I decided I didn't want a metal surround like we have in France. It was very smart, but when taking heavy pans from the back rings, it fairly quickly became scraped. So I wanted plain glass edging on the UK hob, which doesn't come with the automatic timer facility. Not life- changing, but a useful function.

One thing I would mention, if lighting is poor or when the sun is shining brightly, especially when the winter sun is so much lower, I can have problems finding the ON 'button'. Not such a problem if I have my specs on, but sometimes needs several stabs when the above conditions apply.

A friend, whose induction hob I looked at when trying to decide what sort to get, was keen to tell and show me her cleaning set - basically a blade for scraping burned food off her hob. Now I've never had problems with food burning on even my old electric hob, so I never bought a scraper, have never needed it. I love being able to wipe my hobs clean, no knobs to get round, like on my last hob, and no problems such as bits getting under the stand bits on a gas oven.

Another thing about winter with low sun shining directly from the left of my hob, every speck of dust shows; in summer that's not a problem as the sun is so much higher in the sky. If you don't have sun shining directly onto your hob, no problem, I would guess.

Good luck for your great hob search!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...