6 Best Range Hoods of 2019

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Last updated on June 4, 2020 1:54 pm

There are so many added features for microwave ovens that are located over the range, freeing up much-needed space in the kitchen. On the other hand, if removing smoke and fumes is more important to you, I’d suggest you opt for a range hood instead. In this post, we have put together a list of different range hoods for your microwave oven to help you find what works for you.

Practical And Trendy:

Range hoods for your over the range (OTR) microwaves have come a long way. They are much more practical while offering an appealing style to fit your taste. Many of these hoods are made from stainless steel which is easier to clean and will not cost an arm and a leg!

OTR Microwaves vs Range Hoods:

Most of these hoods are excellent for removing both smoke and fumes. Some are better than others when it comes to their lighting and noise reduction features. Recent tests paid attention to their defrosting abilities, how fast they heat food, the level of noise, venting, and how easy they are to use.

Considering A Vented Or Ductless Hood:

We do not recommend getting a ductless hood. The problem, smoke and fumes will be dispersed around the kitchen and even throughout your entire home. Having a vent placed outside is a much better option but can be difficult to install so we recommend you bring in someone to do it for you.

Under The Cabinet Hoods:

These hoods, if on an exterior wall, will have ductwork routed up through the cabinet and then outside. Some models have the ductwork in the back of the unit, otherwise, the ductwork is routed through the cabinet to the ceiling, soffit, or chase.

Wall Hoods:

This model is made for an area with no cabinets and mounted with an exposed vent stack on the wall. Island hoods work above a projecting frame and mounted to the ductwork in the ceiling. As they do not have cabinets to funnel fumes, you should look for one that is at least 6-inches wider than your cooktop.

Keep in mind, any hood you choose should be at least as wide as your cooktop. Stay away from hoods that are too small, you will not be happy with the outcome.


Make sure you follow the manufacturer’s guidelines whether you are purchasing a hood or an OTR microwave oven. Most guidelines recommend 18 to 20-inches above the elements or burners. This will give you plenty of room to work while making sure steam does not escape out the sides. If you are running an outdoor vent, choose the largest solid, smooth walled metal ducting that will fit.  Make sure the duct line is short to prevent as much bending as possible, allowing for better airflow.  Also, install a roof or wall cap outside to prevent back drafts. You should wash or replace the filters every month or, at tops, every three months which will depend on how often you will be cooking.

By the time you are ready to make a purchase, you should know the layout of your kitchen area in order to choose the best size. Here are the different models to choose from:

Under Cabinet Hoods:

These hoods are mounted at the bottom of the wall cabinet. The ductwork is inside an adjoining wall, soffit, ceiling, or chase, allowing the fumes and smoke to be directed outside. Some models that are narrow can slide out from the upper cabinet when it’s needed. The average kitchen cabinet only extends about halfway across the stove. This extension will route smoke and steam away from the cabinet back toward the suction end of the hood. This design is usually for those who cannot get the recommended stove to hood clearance with the standard under cabinet hood design.

Shop Undercabinet Range Hoods on Amazon

Wall Chimney Hoods:

This design is for areas that do not have cabinets over the range and mount with an exposed vent stack on the wall to vent outside.

Shop Wall-Chimney Range Hoods on Amazon

Island Hoods:

Island hoods are mounted to and vented through the ductwork in the ceiling. As they do not have a wall or cabinet to funnel fumes, they should be wider than your cooking surface.

Shop Island Range Hoods on Amazon

Downdraft Hoods:

These hoods try to reverse the direction of smoke and fumes and exhaust them through the ducts under the floor. All in all, they are not the best for removing smoke and fumes.

Shop Downdraft Range Hoods on Amazon

Ductless Hoods:

These hoods are usually for islands, walls, or cabinets. They direct smoke, steam, and heat away from the stove but will travel through the kitchen. There is a filter that traps oil and grease droplets in the air and you have the option of purchasing an additional filter to reduce odors. This is not recommended because the smoke and odors will carry throughout your kitchen and the rest of your home.

When choosing a hood, make sure it’s at least as wide as your cooking surface. An island mount hood does not have a wall or cabinet to help remove fumes, so make sure they are wider than your cooktop.


Manufacturers are proud of the cubic feet per minute of exhausted air because the more airflow, the faster the ventilation. That said, it does not guarantee better smoke capture and removal in the kitchen.

Fan Speeds:

Most fans have three to 6 fan speeds, we do not recommend less than two speeds. You should set the speed to high when cooking and then on the lowest setting after cooking to ventilate the area.  More than three speeds are probably over-kill.

Thermostat Control:

Some models have a built-in temperature sensor that will automatically turn on the fan if the temperature is too high under the hood. This feature is normally found in OTR microwaves. The purpose of the thermostat is to protect the electronics in the microwave from becoming damaged by high temperatures. Should the temperature under the microwave become too high, the exhaust fan will turn on, drawing the hot air away and bringing in cooler air from your kitchen area. It is not a recommended feature for range hoods. If you are cooking with oil and the pan catches on fire, the exhaust fan will turn on drawing more air to the fire and the fan will only make matters even worse.

The exhaust timer is a really nice feature. It turns off the fan after a certain period of time!


Here are some excellent brands that you should look into:

We suggest you shop around as there are many other brands to look into. Hopefully, this guide will help you make a list of features that are important to you and what features are just not worth the price tag. Always consider your space and how you want your hood to operate. Will it be installed outside? If so, we do recommend you hire someone to install it for you unless you are really handy.