We cook in our homes at least once a day. Today, we have modern homes that don’t have that traditional chimney to take the fumes and smoke out of the house. That is why we equip our stoves with a range hood on top to take the fumes and hot air out as a way of keeping the internal environment clean.
With that in mind, as you look forward to replacing the old kitchen microwave as part of house remodeling, you need the best range hood that will work better than the previous solution. Vent-A-Hood has done a great job at providing you with a hood that is solely dedicated on one function: to keep your kitchen fumes-free as you sear your steak or whatever you are cooking.
Here, we have a Vent-A-Hood professional Series model which we are going to shed light on and compare it with some of the substitutes on the market.
1. Vent-A-Hood Professional Series PRH9136SS Best Top Choice Range Hood
If you are looking for a hood that will keep your kitchen free of cooking fumes, make the indoors look neat and spectacular and customizable when the need arises, the PRH-36 model from Vent-A-Hood is an option worth considering. The price might make you look for cheaper hoods, but this review will show you why you should spend money on it and realize the benefits later.
The Professional Series comes as a straight-edged design that suits all the modern kitchens. There are varying sizes that are all customizable, but the one in our review has a 36-inch width, a height of 9 inches and a depth of 21 inches. That is enough for most kitchen stove sets at home. As we tried it out, it fitted well on a set of four stoves. Larger kitchens with more stove units will, however, require larger models from V-A-H which are also available.
What makes it suitable for wheeling the hot grease and air out of the kitchen to the duct is the patented blower technology from the Magic Lung. It’s designed to be quiet during operation, but during preparing this Vanr a Hood Review, I noticed that different customers tend to vary on that opinion.
You will hear some distant sounds when the motor is at low speed but high speed increases the noise level. Regardless of the sound level, it is always in a level that will enable you to concentrate on other matters such as listening to the classical as you cook.
Another ‘sound controller’ which is meant to control the blower speed, is the SensaSource feature. It is intended to vary the speed between normal and low depending on the number of fumes and heat moving up to the hood. At a low setting, the noise is minimal.
One feature that every cook and mom will appreciate is lighting on the hood. The V-A-H model does not disappoint on that. It comes with halogen lighting in two levels which is enough to shed ambient light on the stove area.
You don’t have to worry about the darkening nature of the hood above the stove if there is little to no light getting to your kitchen.
The blower in the hood model utilizes centrifugal filtration which is responsible for combining air pressure with constant rotations to liquefy the grease and get rid of the polluted air. Here, you don’t get air being pulled via a filter, and that makes it more efficient than the cheaper models on the market.
The design on this range hood makes it fire safe which is another feature worth observing. Due to the centrifugal pressure created by a constant speed, fire is prohibited from reaching the duct. Furthermore, the SensaSource regulates the speed to normal while on high mode to make sure that your cooker is safe.
Another reason why you would consider a V-A-H range hood is the CFM (Cubic Feet per Minute) speed. This one is rated at 300 CFM and with the Magic Lung blower, the rate goes up to 450 since it is filterless.
It is also made to be easy on you while cleaning, but that is another factor that raises questions. You need hot water with soap to remove the grease but the amount of time needed to clean it up depends on how often you use your kitchen with the hood above. The Magic Lung collects the grease , and that is one area that needs your cleaning concentration.
On the other hand, that is much better than having to clean the baffle filter or the mesh rear which is not easy to reach. As for the blower, it opens up easily when it’s time to take it to the sink.
The last part goes to the duct customization. The plastic flaps might appear insignificant, but it is possible to replace them with stainless types. The blower sends the grease and fumes up the duct, and at times, it can be hard to clean it since there are no filters here.
You can order a duct to go over the hood, and some of the best practices include having a long one that goes outside or drilling the roof sliding the extra length through the hole.
At above $1500, the V-A-H professional model needs more consideration before making the buying decision. If the price inhibits you from owning it, there are cheaper options in the market that will make your kitchen cleaner and full of clean air.
Here are some of the substitutes that will still work for you if the PRH-36 is unreachable.
Best Valuable Alternatives in our Vent a Hood Review
2. XtremeAir Ultra Series UL10-U30 Best Overall Range Hood
XtremeAir is a brand familiar to those in the USA, notably California since that is where it’s assembled. It is affordable when compared to what you get from the Vent-A-Hood above, going all the way to a third of its price.
While they both have equal width and suit under cabinet installation, the XtremeAir model is quite slim since the squirrel cage blowers are smaller than the Magic Lung in the PHR-36.
The edges on the 1mm non-magnetic stainless steel are also curved, unlike Vent-A-Hood which is corned all through. Once you turn it on, the squirrel blowers will take out all the gases emitting from your stove area even when the cooking becomes too fancy. It has some noise in it, but it is not something that will distract you from concentrating on other matters.
Depending on how you are cooking, there are three blower speed settings via the mechanical buttons. Unless there is too much steam from the wok, the low and medium speeds will always do the air cleansing. The only thing you don’t get here is a sensor like the Vent-A-Hood model.
To make it work for you, you need to a duct that leads the hot air to the outer environment. Customers are asking if it recirculates the air. No, you need an 8-inch vent pipe. The manufacturer, however, adds an adapter that allows you to fit in 6-inch pipes if that is what you have in your kitchen. Remember that they should be rounded as opposed to square duct types. It also uses the baffle filters which trap hot grease. That means fewer oil deposits in the duct as the hot air goes out.
Now, the blowers give in more power than Vent-A-Hood since we have the filters in this model. This range hood gives a maximum input of 900 CFM which is two times more than what the Magic Lung delivers. As you cook, there is enough lighting from the hood to make everything clear and visible.
Cleaning is easier on the XtremeAir though you have to deal with the filters more. On the other hand, tossing the grates in hot soapy water will do the trick in minutes. Installing this unit for your kitchen requires two people and a small DIY project for the vent pipe. After that, it’s all about cleaning and enjoying a cleaner kitchen as you cook.
The only problem with this model from many victims is that you tend to have some mechanical or electrical issues that either come with the unit or appear after a few days of use. The good thing is that customer care is responsive, and most of their solutions work if you explain exactly where the issue is.
Xtreme range hoods are one of the most popular in the market. They are powerful, durable, have great design and really reasonable price. Sometimes Xtreme hoods have quality issues, however, the customer service works on the top level, and it is one of the reasons for such popularity of the brand.
3. Chef 36″ Under Cabinet Range Hood Best Powerful Range Hood
Another affordable Range Hood which fits under the cabinet is the Chef 36in that features a stainless steel body. With less than a half price of Vent a Hood, you get a beautiful kitchen range hood that suits modern design. It is the same size as the models we have reviewed above, but its features allow it to be distinguished from the rest.
First, as it operates, the double motor fans fetch in a large amount of steam and grease that comes directly below from the kitchen stove unit. Chef is different from the Vent-A-Hood which uses one powerful motor.
Even with dual fans, the noise level at maximum speed is 63.8 decibels which are equal to what you hear in restaurants or an office background. At the lowest speed setting, the noise level drops to 61.2 dB which means you can cook and enjoy a conversation with a friend while the hood is on.
The motor fans power adds up to 860 CFM which is way above the Vent-A-Hood, but we are dealing with baffle filters here which are responsible for trapping the hot grease. That is why you need more power from the motor.
Unlike in the models above where we have three-speed settings, the Chef comes with six-speed settings that vary the suction power and noise level. If the unit is running and there is no hot air to scoop out to the vent, the delay shut-off feature puts the range hood off so you don’t have to worry if you are one of the forgetful ones.
On the other hand, you get a cleaner kitchen since it will scoop the remaining odor after cooking.
Important Point – Lightning
As for the lighting, this model receives some mixed reactions. If you bought a unit that was manufactured two years ago, you get the bright halogen bulbs, and they are known to consume energy.
Latter productions come with LED lighting which is brighter on the stoves, and it’s also energy saving. If your unit came with the halogen types, it is possible to replace them with the GU10 base LED lights but make sure the prior cool off first before removing.
One feature that puts this model at an advantage over the ones we have already reviewed is the three-way venting options. It includes a 6-inch round adapter for vertical venting, a 10 x 3 1/4-inch rectangular adapter and a rear venting rectangular adapter that measures the same size as the other rectangular adapter.
Depending on the size of the vent to fit in, the rectangular types may need some adjustment to transit to the regular size of the vent.
Another feature worth noting is the digital clock on the touch screen that displays time. When the range hood is on, the clock button works as a timer which means you can only adjust the time when the hood is off.
If you need to adjust the time, touch and hold the on/off button until the digits blink. Adjust the hour and minute using the speed buttons then press the on/off button to set the adjusted time.
Lastly, the parts you need to clean in this model are the baffle filters that contain an easy removal mechanism and washing with hot soapy water. One more thing, the motor has a 10-year warranty.
Chef 36″ came to our Vent a Hood review because of its durability, powerful fans and of course the price. This range top could be a little bit noise on the max power, but how often you need to switch the sixth speed?
4. Proline Wall/Undercabinet Range Hood Best Thin Range Hood
The last range hood that we recommend to customers who still need another option apart from the Vent-A-Hood model is the Proline Hood. It still costs less then a half of Vent a Hood – almost the same price as the Chef model above.
One of the things that will make you choose it is the slim design that makes it the thinnest in our review. With a height of 5 inches, that makes the 36-inch width smaller and easy to lift as you install.
On the other hand, the smallness still does not exclude an assist when installing so; it is still a two-man job. The edges are smooth on the sides, but the top and bottom parts have cornered ones.
The two fans rotate quietly at lower speed settings, but it is louder as you crank up the speed. Therefore, the noise issue depends on how fast or slow the fans are rotating. You have four different speed settings for the blower here which is more than what the Vent-A-Hood has.
When it comes to the amount of air it can take out, you get 600 CFM from this hood that directs the greases to the baffle filters while the hot air escapes via the fitted vent. Both fans have their grilled air inlets that are separated at the center. The grilled positions are actually in line with the LED lighting.
Speaking of the lights, you get 1.5W from the GU10 LED bulbs that give a blue-white coloring. Some customers have complained that they appear dimmer and instead opt for the white-bright ones. If you want to go brighter, they are replaceable.
Just like the Chef above, this one also has multiple venting options. You can choose to use the top part if your duct goes all the way up to the roof or use the rear panels as the hot air passage. That depends on where the outlet is located in the kitchen. You, however, need to look at the adjustments required to make the outlet fit with the vent options on it.
One of the issues that customers face with this model involves receiving faulty products that either need repair or replacement. Make sure that the range hood you get comes from trusted dealers who can handle the after-sales services efficiently. The next problem comes in when mounting the hood.
Some of us are asking if it can be mounted on the wall. Well, this is an under cabinet hood, so it has no wall mounting options. As you mount, it is possible for you to see that the mounting screws are smaller and may not hold the unit directly above the kitchen unit.
In that case, you will need to look for or order bigger once that will sustain the holding ability. Also, it requires a mounting template since measuring where the screws will go will lead to measurement errors. It, however, does not come with one.
In case of any issues with your unit, the manufacturer issues a 3-year warranty which consists of two years of care and maintenance and one year to cover for labor and parts replacement.
Proline is a very good range hood, perfect size, and great work. It is an affordable range hood that will suit many kitchens. It is not the top offer at the market, however, the price is more than attractive.
Vent a Hood Review – Buyer’s Guide
After going through the review above, you might note that there are similarities in all the under cabinet range hoods despite the different features and pricing. Here are the considerations to make as you choose the best one for your kitchen needs.
Contents Vent a Hood Review:
Sizing and installing – Vent a Hood Review
The general structure of a range hood is what all the customers will look at since they need a unit that fits. That is why measurements and shape are important. Here, we have reviewed 36-inch hoods, but most of our homes will require 30-36 inches. The range depends on how wide your cooktop is.
The general rule to apply here is that the hood should go beyond the kitchen stove by at least three inches on all sides. That way, it can arrest all the vapor coming from the cooker.
During installation, if you have a gas cooker, the distance between it and the hood should be above 24 inches but not more than 30 inches. For the electric stove, consider 20-24 inches. Make sure you go through the manual to check what it says about the mounting height.
>Fan speed settings and CFM Rating – Vent a Hood Review
Apart from the Vent-A-Hood that uses one wide and powerful motor to do most of the work, the later models come with two engines and fans. The fan system has adjustable speed settings.
Higher speeds suits cooking that has large vapor deposits or the intense aromas. The only issue you have to deal with is the extra noise. However, we have quieter options even at the highest speed which allow you to evade such a problem.
The range hood motors are responsible for rotating the fans and increase the airflow. The amount of air taken in is what the designers’ measure in CFM (Cubic Feet per Minute). Higher CFM values dictate that the range hood is capable of getting rid of the fumes and hot greases emitting from the cooker area.
Ventilation – Vent a Hood Review
In our review, we have addressed the vented range hoods, but there are others that are duct-free or convertible in the sense that they can operate with a duct or without one.
Since we are interested in the ducted types, you should consider having a duct that goes outside to take the hot air out of the kitchen. That is why the vented range hoods have more power since they have to make all the contaminated air out. The longer the duct, the higher the power you need.
Noise – Vent a Hood Review
This is one thing that disgusts anyone while in the kitchen – noise from the range hood. That is why manufacturers are striving to make sure that it stays quiet even at high fan speeds. The Vent-A-Hood PHR-36 model is somewhat loud at high speeds but very quiet in medium and low settings. Always check for the noise level before buying a range hood.
Other features – Vent a Hood Review
Here are some of the additional features that can make the range hood operation easier:
Auto shutoff: A model like the Chef 36 in has a delay shutoff function that allows the hood to clean up the air after cooking and shut off later when it’s done.
Heat sensing: Having a heat sensor in the hood such as the Vent-A-Hood Professional model allows it to change the speed depending on the heat levels.
Lights: Modernization has prompted the range hoods to fit in some lights which allow the cooking area to be brighter. Most customers prefer the LEDs since they are more intelligent than the halogen types and they also save energy.
Conclusion – Vent a Hood Review
So far, the best range hood should suck up the contaminated air from the cooktop and take it away from the kitchen environment.
Installing the Vent-A-Hood professional series is an excellent move at remodeling your kitchen since you have a quality unit with everything you need to purify the air. Adjustments are allowed to make sure that it fits in well in the mounting area and around the vent too.
However, due to its price, you may opt for cheaper models that will accommodate your budget. In that case, we recommend the Chef 36in since it has more speed settings, multiple venting options, and a touch screen digital clock that acts as a timer when the hood is operating. As we summarize, it is essential to consider what you need on top of your kitchen if you want a range hood that will survive the kitchen heat for years.