When you cook food in your home or apartment, your oven produces a lot of steam, smoke, and other things that are not good for your family to breathe. If you have ever left anything in the oven too long, you know how much smoke it can produce. There are also a lot of ovens that cook using natural gas, which can be deadly if inhaled.
Have you ever thought about where all those substances go when you cook? Unless you are burning something, your house is not filling up with smoke every time you cook. Do ovens need to be vented? Here is everything you need to know.
Ovens Need Ventilation
Every oven needs to have proper ventilation. The good news is that most oven manufacturers have the vent system designed into their products. If your oven is correctly installed you should have all the ventilation you need.
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Some ovens that have a stovetop have a range hood. That is a hood over the stove with an exhaust fan that can turn on as needed. They sometimes have a duct installed to guide the air from the oven out of the house. Almost all ovens, even without a stove, have a vent system.
Why Do Ovens Need Ventilation?
The venting oven system is not only to protect you from toxic fumes. Your oven works best when fresh air from your kitchen comes in, circulates the food, and then releases it. The ventilation system keeps the superheated air from escaping into your home and removes many odors associated with cooking, so your kitchen smells fresh.
Without a vent, the heated air in your oven has nowhere to go. If the oven overheats, it could malfunction, resulting in accidents that could cause a fire or an injury.
A gas oven emits harmful vapors like carbon monoxide that can cause sickness or death. A range hood vents all of that out and eliminates the problem.
Cooking causes odors. Some of them are nice when the food gets prepared, but after they linger for a while, they become pungent. Venting helps remove smells, so they do not stay in your home as long.
If you have cooked something after someone spilled food into the stove or oven, you know how much smoke can get produced. Your home can fill up quickly and set off your smoke alarms. A good vent can help reduce that.
Ducted vs. Ductless
The size of your kitchen, the amount of food you prepare, and your preference are all factors in the type of range you install. Here are some positive and negative aspects of ranges with or without a duct.
If you have a gas or wall oven, you may need more airflow. A ventilation system with a duct will work better. It can move enough air that it can remove smoke and odors from your kitchen in an instant.
A ducted hood won’t work in every kitchen. If your kitchen is in the interior of your home and does not have a wall connecting with the outside, there may be no way to install it.
A ductless range hood is less expensive and works fine for electric ovens. These work better for people living in a condo or apartment. It pulls the air in from your oven, filters it, and puts it back out. The downside is that they do not have as much airflow and require the filter to be changed periodically.
Benefits of an Oven Ventilation System
Almost all ovens have a vent system. There are a lot of benefits to having proper ventilation in your kitchen.
- Range systems, or range hoods, come in many colors and designs. It can be easy to find one that blends into your kitchen colors.
- There is extra lighting installed in a range hood that can help with preparing food.
- Ovens with a proper vent system do not have to get cleaned as often since so many particles get removed during the cooking process.
- A decent ventilation system will keep your kitchen from overheating while you cook, which can keep your utility bills from rising.
Do Oven Vents Need To Be Cleaned?
Oven and stove vents can get clogged with grease and food particles over time. If the airflow of your vent system gets blocked, it can cause it to not work properly. You could start smelling smoke whenever you cook and notice your home getting hot as well.
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Check the vent hole frequently and clean out any excess grease when you see it. You can look at the manufacturing instructions that came with your oven to see if they have any advice on how often to clean your particular oven. Pay attention to the fan built into your range so you can replace it if it stops working efficiently.
Maintaining Your Ventilation System
If you keep your vent system clean, it can last you for a long time. The fans and filters can get clogged up easily. It can only take a few minutes occasionally to keep it working at peak performance.
- If you live in an apartment or condo, your oven probably has a ductless vent system. You can use the exhaust fan built into it to get extra airflow.
- Getting a good air purifier can help to remove some of the smells your vent system cannot.
- Change the filter every three months to ensure you get the best airflow possible. If the airflow is blocked, the vent system is not doing what it is designed to do.
All ovens need proper ventilation. Most manufacturers design vents into their products. If you have an older oven, you may want to install ventilation or upgrade what you have.
An oven with proper ventilation will help keep the air in your home smelling fresh, keep harmful elements like carbon monoxide from getting to you, and keep your energy costs down by venting the hot air out.