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A full-fledged cooking range is a must for any family kitchen, and an essential part of the cooking range is the oven hood, or range hood, as it is also known.
The main function of the range hood is to remove smoke, grease, soot, and toxins from the kitchen when you cook. Some systems have vents that lead outside the home, and they vent some of these impurities outside, while others recycle the air and let comparatively clean air back into the kitchen.
The main component responsible for filtering out the grease from your cooking is found on the underside of the hood and is called the range hood filter. Cleaning these filters regularly is necessary if you want your hood to function efficiently.
In this informative read, we’re going to show you different ways to clean the filters, discover what the best filter degreaser is, and more.
Easy cleaning hacks
Cleaning a hood filter is not as easy as just removing it, running it underwater, applying dish soap, and scrubbing it. You see, regular dish detergents can harm the finish of the filter. And abrasive scouring tools like brillo or steel wool aren’t good for them either.
Here are two easy ways to clean your range hood baffle filters.
Hack 1: Washing filters in the dishwasher
This cleaning method is probably the easiest one. All you need to do is use your dishwasher!
- Remove the filters from the range hood.
- Place them in the bottom rack of your dishwasher.
- Wash them with a regular load of dishes.
- The only thing you will need to pay special attention to is the kind of detergent you use. Avoid using anything with bleach or other harsh chemicals.
- Once the cycle is done, wipe the filters using a paper towel or a soft cloth. Remember, always wipe in the direction of the grain on the stainless steel filters.
- Make sure the filters are completely dry before putting them back in place.
Hack 2: Handwashing it
Sometimes, handwashing something just seems a more satisfactory and thorough way of cleaning it. Here’s how you can clean your range hood filters by hand.
- Detach the filter from the range hood.
- Fill your kitchen sink halfway up with warm water or hot water. Add some soap to it.
- Soak the filters in soapy water for at least 15 to 20 minutes.
- Rotate them if they aren’t fully submerged in the water.
- Once the filters soak for long enough, scrub them gently using a scrub brush or a soft sponge.
- Rinse the filters in warm water and dry them using a microfiber cloth or a dishcloth.
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Deep cleaning hacks
Easy hacks to clean range hood filters work only if the filters are cleaned regularly. If you haven’t cleaned yours in a while, these cleaning methods, well, just won’t hack it. What you need is deep cleaning hacks, and that’s exactly what we have for you.
The baking soda hack
- Remove your range hood filters. Honeycomb filters have a metal loop to push up the filter and slide it out easily. The process to remove baffle filters is slightly different. You need to push up the back of the filter and move it to the back of the hood. Then, slide out the front edge first.
- Fill your sink one-third of the way up with hot water and submerge the filters.
- Stir in a half cup of baking soda and a little dish soap. Make sure the dish soap you choose is good at breaking down grease.
- Make sure the water is bubbly. If it isn’t, add some more baking soda and water.
- Soak the filters in the warm water, and leave them for 10-15 minutes. This will help break down the grease and any other residue.
- If the filter is not completely submerged, turn it around after 10-15 minutes and let the other end soak for as long as well.
- Begin scrubbing using a sponge or a scrub brush from one end. Then, submerge the scrubbed end and clean the other end of the filter.
- Rinse the filters in warm water and dry them using a microfiber cloth or dishcloth.
- Reinstall the filters in the hood range only once they are completely dry.
The boiling water hack
This method is particularly useful while cleaning range hood mesh filters.
- Choose a pot large enough to hold the filter and fill it with water.
- Bring the water to a boil and slowly pour a half cup of baking soda into it. Take care not to let the baking soda bubble over.
- Let the filter rest in the water for around 15 minutes. You ought to see the grease float on the top.
- Use tongs to remove the filter from the pot and rinse it under the sink using hot water. Be careful not to burn your hands.
- If you notice any grease remaining, scrub it off using a sponge or scrub brush.
- Wipe it dry using a microfiber cloth and reinstall the mesh filter.
Dealing with charcoal filters
While baffle filters and mesh filters can be removed, cleaned, and reinstalled, you cannot do that with charcoal filters. These need to be replaced after every 120 hours of cooking, or approximately once every six months.
While baffle filters and mesh filters are made of stainless steel, charcoal filters are carbon filters. These are normally found in ductless hoods. Charcoal filters are found in pairs, with one on either side of the range hood blower.
Regular maintenance is of utmost importance
These are just some of the ways you can clean your hood filters. Some people swear that vinegar and dishwashing soap form the ultimate cleaning solution. Others swear by baking soda and hot water.
Irrespective of how you choose to clean your range hood filters, it is important to stick to a regular cleaning and maintenance schedule. By cleaning your filters at least once a month and then deep cleaning them once every three months, you will make sure that your range hood functions optimally, helping you maintain healthy indoor air quality and to keep your family safe.