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E is for Extractors

Posted by The Kitchen Workshop on

The A - Z of Kitchens

Extractors are a vital part of a kitchen, but do you know your ducted from recirculating?

Elica InterStellar Cooker Hood  Elica Andante Downdraft Extractor  CDA Cooker Hood  Tesla Hob and Extractor


There are two main approaches to extraction - ducted or re-circulating. Ducted extraction takes odours and steam and pushes it outside, whereas recirculation cleans the air through filters and puts it back in the room. Re-circulating extractors are considered very nearly as good as ducted in most real installations as corners affect the performance of ducted extraction considerably but the real difference is in removing steam from the room.

Ducted extraction takes the moisture out of the room, but in re-circulating extraction the charcoal filters absorb the moisture, but it then evaporates back into the room over time.   

Most wall mounted extractors can be either ducted or re-circulating but you will probably need an adapter kit. In general, most extractors can be used either way but not all so it is worth checking.

Extractors can be focal points, or hidden in cabinetry depending on design preference. From full glass chandelier extractors through to ceiling mounted flush fitting versions, or even ones that extract down through the hob – the choice is huge and the price range can be from less than £100 to £thousands.

From a design perspective, if the hob is on an island it is really important to consider extraction from the outset. ‘Flush’ ceiling extractors actually have a depth of normally 30cm. Rarely can the ceiling above take the full depth of the flush extractor and so in these circumstances usually you would design a ‘dropbox’ – a design feature that hangs down from the ceiling, usually following the shape of the island and accented with lighting.

Alternately on an island a ‘downdraft’ extractor can be fitted. This can be through the hob, or from the rear of the hob where a rise and fall extractor takes the air away. If downdraft extractors are to be ducted out then consideration needs to be made of the routing particularly as it will have to go under the floor. A lot of performance is lost on ducted extraction where there are corners in the ducting. As a rule of thumb, if there are more than 3 corners, the performance will be badly affected. Flexi ducting makes this worse so try to choose ducting that optimises airflow.

A third option on an island is to have an extractor that hangs down from the ceiling. This can cost less than the other two approaches, but the extractor will then be right in your eye-line so you need to be sure you are happy with what you see. There are hundreds of options to go for here, but the Elica Celeste is one of the most famous examples of a feature island extractor although for obvious reasons it is only available as recirculating.

If in doubt, ask your kitchen designer!

We offer extraction that suits every location from brands like Elica, Neff, Siemens, Air Uno and Fisher & Paykel so there's sure to be one that's ideal.

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