Kitchen Ventilation

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Kitchen Ventilation

In many homes, cooking is the largest indoor source of air pollutants. Exposures can be higher in the kitchen compared to other places in the home. We can still enjoy the many benefits of cooking by installing and using range hoods that vent to the outdoors. This group will promote discussion about how to select effective range hoods, strategies to improve the efficiency of existing ventilation systems for kitchen pollutants, and what to do in homes that don’t have ducting already installed above the range. It will also touch on cooking and health studies, and how to reduce emissions through different cooking practices and appliance use.

Members: 28
Latest Activity: Aug 28

Discussion Forum

Depressurization/make-up air issues

Started by Don Fugler. Last reply by Don Fugler Aug 28. 2 Replies

One of the issues to consider when adding a range hood, or replacing one, is whether it will cause depressurization problems in the house. If the exhaust flow of a range hood (or any other fan)…Continue

Recirculating hoods

Started by Don Fugler Aug 26. 0 Replies

Beloved by builders, scorned by building scientists, and largely ignored by homeowners, recirculating hoods have a mixed reception. They do not require a wall penetration. They will not cause house…Continue

Choosing a range hood

Started by Don Fugler. Last reply by Linda Wigington Aug 25. 5 Replies

There is so much information - how do you find what you need?With the references listed in Tom Phillips "Kitchen Ventilation Resources" discussion, you can become educated quite quickly. If you are a…Continue

Good Eating with Reduced Cooking Emissions

Started by Linda Wigington. Last reply by Don Fugler Jul 31. 4 Replies

What can an occupant do to reduce cooking emissions, regardless of whether or not they have a ducted range hood?  We have over 150 families who have participated in the ROCIS Low Cost Monitoring…Continue

Tags: behavior, burnt bacon, lifestyle, spikes, IAQ

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Comment by Don Fugler on May 18, 2018 at 3:05pm

Alice,

Thanks for that. It is good to hear about specific interventions like yours. The data from our particle monitoring in Pittsburgh homes shows that cooking with electric stovetops generates similar amounts of particles compared to gas. There have been many studies that indicate NOx is far higher in houses with gas stoves. If you switched from a gas cooktop to an electric induction, you would see a drop in both particles and NOx when cooking.

Comment by Alice La Pierre on May 17, 2018 at 3:43pm

A couple of factors influence how well emissions can be reduced from cooking.  The obvious one is switching to electric, or electric induction, to eliminate particulates from natural gas combustion.  But the other less obvious one is the height of the vent hood.

In residential applications, code likes it to be between 26 --30 inches, but local codes can drop this down to 18" or allow it to be as high as 36".

The higher the vent hood, the fewer particulates will be drawn in.  My preference for my own vent hood was 30", to prevent the head-bonking aspects of a lower hood.  Eighteen inches seems to be far too low to be comfortable for the chef.

My own personal story:  In 2012, we did a major renovation to the house, which included draft sealing and additional insulation, new insulated wood windows, and building a second wall on the exterior of our 1923 stucco Craftsman house in Berkeley, CA.  This resulted in a dramatic drop in the use of our natural gas furnace and electricity , and increased comfort for all occupants.

During the retrofit, we didn't have the funds to replace our vintage Wedgewood style gas stove with pilot lights, but we added, for the first time, a ventilation hood.  After four years, i was diagnosed with the beginning stages of asthma, and was given an inhaler to use.  The symptoms were especially bad first thing in the morning.  With testing, we were able to eliminate allergies to dogs, pollen, mold, and other common allergens.  The one thing they couldn't test for was natural gas particulates, but I had a sense that this was the cause of the illness.

In November 2016, did research into induction ranges; the price had come down, and Consumer Reports rated one from Sears quite highly.  For less than $1,000, i could swap out the old gas stove, install a new 40-amp circuit (another $400), and install an induction range., just in time for all that holiday cooking.

Within two weeks, my asthma symptoms disappeared, and have not returned. Moreover, there was no significant increase in our electricity consumption, just a slight bump for all that holiday cooking, but it was mostly offset by our solar PV.

Your mileage may vary, but this seems to be a winning combination in our house:  A very tight envelope, good ventilation, and an induction range.

 

Members (28)

 
 
 

Discussion Forum

Depressurization/make-up air issues

Started by Don Fugler. Last reply by Don Fugler Aug 28. 2 Replies

Recirculating hoods

Started by Don Fugler Aug 26. 0 Replies

Choosing a range hood

Started by Don Fugler. Last reply by Linda Wigington Aug 25. 5 Replies

Good Eating with Reduced Cooking Emissions

Started by Linda Wigington. Last reply by Don Fugler Jul 31. 4 Replies

Kitchen Ventilation Resources

Started by Tom Phillips. Last reply by Don Fugler Jun 14. 1 Reply

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