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The Extractor Fan Buying Guide – Choosing the Appliances Perfect for Your Kitchen

The Extractor Fan Buying Guide.


With the increasing popularity of open-plan kitchens, extractor fans are now becoming more of a necessity rather than an optional extra. Of course, conventionally, you can open a window to let cooking odours out, but extractor fans are a much quicker and more efficient way of removing steam and unwanted smell from the air, ensuring a clean and pleasant living space to cook, dine and relax.

Here is your guide to choosing the best extractor fan for your kitchen, with three key aspects to consider; type, style and size.

Type of Extraction

Yes, there are actually two different methods of extraction – ducted out extraction or recirculation. Ducted out extraction removes the air completely from the building by drawing it in through a filter and releasing it through a vent that leads directly outside. This is best suited to a kitchen that can facilitate a duct with access to an exterior wall or area.

Recirculation functions by drawing in the unwanted air and fumes through filters, cleaning it, and then releasing the existing air back into the kitchen. Recirculation extractor fans are easier to install as they can go anywhere in your kitchen, without needing any external access or ducting installed.


Design is just as important as function when choosing your extractor fan and there are plenty of styles to suit any interior and type of kitchen. From minimal, sleek extractors to eye-catching extractors that act as more of a design feature than a practicality.

Chimney hoods are the most common choice, available in a range of different styles and fitted onto a wall above the hob. With a chimney like structure, hence the name, and generally a glass or stainless steel canopy, chimney hoods effectively catch steam and remove unwanted air.

With the increasing trend of having an island in the kitchen, island hoods are of course the go-to option. Island hoods are attached to the ceiling and are generally the same design as a chimney hood with a central structure and canopy effectively catching unwanted grease and odours. Island hoods can also act as a great focal point in the kitchen, with a range of styles, shapes and finishes suiting any home.

Canopy hoods are installed on the underside of your kitchen cabinet, with minimal disruption to the design of your kitchen. Similar to canopy hoods are integrated hoods; however, they require space between units.

Downdraft hoods are ideal if you are looking for a discreet, minimalist look, whilst still benefiting from an effective extraction method. Downdraft extractors can be installed on a kitchen island, behind or next to the hob. Downdraft hoods are flexible as they can be installed anywhere, effective as they can be as close as possible to the cooking area allowing for immediate extraction and tidy as they can be hidden away after use. A very popular choice! This option would possibly need the floor to be dug up for ducting to the exterior of the property – an important consideration if renovating and an excellent option if part of an extension.


Your extractor should be the same size as your hob or slightly wider to ensure that the whole area is covered as the air will not always flow directly upwards, and you can benefit from successful extraction. It is also important to leave a sizeable gap below so as not to let smells escape.

Extraction Rate

How do you know what extraction rate you will need? There is actually a formula for this! You will need a tape measure and calculator to measure the length, width and height of your kitchen to achieve the volume. You then multiple this figure by 10, round it up or down to the closest extraction rate, and there you have it!


Most extractor fans will have additional features such as lighting, volume controls and different speed settings, depending on your cooking needs.

Helpful Tips

Wash the filters regularly to ensure they are working as they should be. In most extractors, the filters will be easily detachable to wash, soak and rinse, then simply re-attach. We also recommend turning your fan on just before cooking, and leaving it on for 5 – 10 minutes after cooking to be sure all grease, steam and odours have been successfully removed.


For further information and advice, make sure to contact our Roma team!


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