Ducted vs. Ductless Range Hoods: Which One To Choose – ROBAM Living

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Ducted vs. Ductless Range Hoods: Which One To Choose

When most people start planning a kitchen renovation, they don’t often anticipate how many decisions these renovations will require. With choices regarding appliances, countertops, backsplashes, and countless more, these details can begin to seem trivial. However, some renovation decisions are much more pertinent than others. 

One of the most important decisions any homeowner will make when renovating or updating their kitchen is installing a ducted or ductless range hood.

Both these exhaust systems come with advantages and disadvantages for cooking in kitchens. To learn more about ducted vs. ductless range hoods and which one to choose for your kitchen, continue reading below.

What Is the Purpose of a Range Hood?

Although many homeowners may not realize it, range hoods are one of the most critical appliances in any kitchen. Range hoods cover the exhaust and ventilation system above your stove. These hoods enclose potent fans that collect smoke, steam, odors, and fumes produced while cooking.

If you've ever overcooked something on your stove and turned on an overhead fan, then you may recognize these appliances.

How Range Hoods Keep Kitchens Clean

Range hoods provide much more than simple fan ventilation. These hoods are also crucial for ensuring airborne particles and harmful fumes are filtered away from your face and food while cooking in your kitchen.

When kitchens do not use range hood fans, airborne particles are more likely to build up in the dirt and grime on kitchen counters and backsplashes.

Ducted Range Hoods

Now that we've discussed the purpose and function of range hoods, let's review the differences between ducted and ductless range hoods.

Between the two appliance types, homeowners mostly commonly use ducted range hoods in their kitchen designs.

Ducted range hoods use specific duct pipes to connect your kitchen's ventilation system to the outside of your home. When you turn a ducted range hood's fan, this system collects steam, smoke, and air particles inside its duct pipes and pushes these particles outside your kitchen until they're removed from your home completely.

Ducted Range Hoods Placement

While ducted range hoods are highly effective for omitting smoke and odors away from home kitchens, these appliances also requires additional consideration for their proper placement. Since ducted range hoods use pipes to transfer particles from inside the kitchen to outside your home, your kitchen's floorplan design may be more restricted by this appliance.

If your home renovation prefers to remove these restrictions from your floor plan, then opting for a ductless range hood may be more a better match for you.

The Advantages

  • Helps prevent cabinet discoloration
  • Removes dirty air particles
  • Prevents particle and grime buildup
  • Effective heat ventilation

The Disadvantages

  • Must be installed near pipe ducts

Ductless Range Hoods

Ductless range hoods do not rely on duct pipes to transfer airborne particles out of kitchens. Instead, these appliances collect dirty air, filter out harmful particles, and reventilate this air back into your kitchen.

Although certain appliances may be different, most ductless range hoods use carbon and charcoal cleaners to ensure that filtered air is cleaned completely before recirculating.

Maintaining Ductless Range Hoods

The only upkeep cost of this convenient appliance is a regular cleaning schedule. Since ductless range hoods rely on charcoal and carbon filters to clean your kitchen air, it's essential homeowners manually clean and change these filters. Most ductless range hoods function best when they are cleaned and changed every two months.


While the recirculation system of these fans is convenient, humidity is also a common downside of ductless range hoods. 

Since hot air is recirculated instead of transferred away from your kitchen, some homeowners prefer ducted range hoods to keep themselves cooler while cooking.  

Ductless Range Hood Placement

However, since ductless range hoods do not rely on pipes for transfer air particles, a significant advantage of this appliance is that homeowners can install ductless range hoods everywhere they desire.

The Advantages

  • Can be installed anywhere in kitchens
  • Filters and recirculates air
  • Prevents particle and grime buildup

The Disadvantages

  • Less effective heat ventilation

What Homeowners Should Consider

With all these different pros and cons considered, how do homeowners pick which one to choose when it comes to ducted vs. ductless range hoods? We recommend homeowners start by considering which appliance type will be a better match for their lifestyle.

Consider Your Lifestyle

Do you cook often? Does your kitchen get humid? How often do you clean your kitchen appliances? Answering each of these questions will help homeowners lean toward one machine more than the other.

For those who prefer to remove humidity from their kitchen while they cook and are less likely to clean their kitchen often, ducted range hoods are most likely a better match for your lifestyle.

Consider Convenience

Homeowners should also consider how essential convenience is to their kitchen renovation. For those who prefer to avoid restrictions installing their range hood, ductless range hoods are likely a better fit.

Consider Budget

Factoring in the cost of your range hood is also a necessary consideration for any homeowner. Before investing in this appliance, homeowners should keep in mind that ductless range hoods will require new filters and maintenance to function effectively.

However, ductless range hoods can also be significantly more cost-effective compared to ducted range hoods because they do not require the installation of new piping. Since ducted range hoods rely on vents to filter out air from your kitchen, homeowners are unable to avoid the cost of installing piping for vents to use this appliance.

Ductless range hoods require no new piping installation cost for new vents. In fact, ductless range hoods are even convertible for homeowners with islands, mounts, or other floor plans.

As you consider which range hood is a better fit for your budget, also assess these different price factors:

  • Installation Fee
  • Maintenance Costs
  • House Value

Although there are many decisions to make when renovating your kitchen, the range hood homeowners choose makes a significant impact on their finished kitchen design and functionality. A practical range hood will improve air quality, keep your kitchen clean, and make your home more comfortable. 

Compare and contrast each appliance's different qualities to find the best range hood for your updated kitchen.

If you're searching for kitchen range hoods for sale to start browsing through ducted and ductless models, check out our Robam Living website. We offer the best and most advanced technology and appliances to add value to your home.

Ducted vs. Ductless Range Hoods: Which One To Choose
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