Choosing a Hood

Choosing a cooker hood that can quickly and efficiently deal with steam, vapour, smoke and odours is essential for a pleasant kitchen environment.

In this guide we explain some of the important considerations when choosing your cooker hood.

Britannia cooker hood

About our hoods

Britannia range cooker hoods are an incredible help in removing cooking smells, vapours and condensation, and are designed for quiet operation.

You will mainly use the lower and mid speeds during normal cooking, resorting to maximum speed when dealing with emergencies – such as burning the toast. Maximum speed is sometimes necessary when using all burners or when griddling meat, which can create excessive vapours.

In our brochure we publish the cooker hood noise levels for each motor speed, to help you make comparisons with other manufacturers.

The performance of a hood is extremely important and is normally measured in cubic metres per hour (m3h), i.e. how much air is moved – this can also be found in our brochure.

All Britannia hood models include:

  • Superior, powerful motors for high performance
  • Hotplate illumination
  • Metal grease filters that can be washed by hand or in a dishwasher

For help comparing our various models, check out our simple checklist for comparing range cooker hoods.

However, there are many other important considerations when choosing a range cooker and installing it in your kitchen - which we will look at in more detail now.

Ducted out or recycling?

It is always preferable to use Britannia cooker hoods as ducted models, i.e. ducted to an outside wall.

This means air is drawn into the hood, fats are trapped by the grease filter, and odours, fumes and condensation are then expelled to the outside atmosphere.

You can choose to install some hoods in recycling mode. This means air is drawn into the hood, fats are trapped by the grease filter, the air then passes through charcoal filters to help absorb cooking odours, and the purified air is then recycled back into the kitchen.

However, we only recommend recycling mode if it is impossible to duct out, as recycling mode has the following drawbacks:

  • A recycling hood will circulate at least 30% less air than by ducting out – this is because the charcoal filters will restrict some of the airflow.
  • Charcoal filters are an optional extra and will require replacing at least every six months or earlier with frequent use (charcoal filters are not required if you duct out).
  • It will help reduce cooking odours, but won't reduce steam or condensation. To reduce these you must duct out so that they are expelled to the outside.

Ducted hood in the same room as a fossil fuel-burning appliance

The following is a requirement of UK and European legislation and is in the interest of your safety.

If installing a ducted cooker hood in a room containing a fossil fuel-burning appliance such as a gas or oil central heating boiler, then its flue must be of the room-sealed or balanced flue type.

A ducted hood is not suitable for use in a room where any open flue is in use, as dangerous fumes of combustion can be sucked back into the room. (This would include open flue central heating boilers, coal fires, log fires, gas fires, wood burning stoves, etc.)

Therefore if you have an open flue fossil fuel-burning appliance in your kitchen, you must select a hood that is capable of working on recycling mode.

Positioning your cooker hood

Try to install your hood and cooker onto an outside wall in the kitchen if possible. This will minimise the length of the ducting and maximise the hood performance.


All Britannia hoods have high performance extraction rates, so using the correct size ducting is very important.

Most Britannia hoods have outlets to accept 150mm diameter ducting. Do not be tempted to use reducers and fit 125mm or 100mm ducting, as this will dramatically reduce performance and increase noise levels. Do not use concertina type expanding 150mm ducting.

When planning your ducting run, try to keep the number of bends to a minimum to help maximise performance. We advise using Britannia rigid circular ducting or ‘Megaduct’.

Note that ducting must not be connected to any existing ventilation or flue system that is being used for any other purpose.

Hoods over a Griddle or Chef Top

If you intend to use your hood over a Britannia cooker with a Chef Top or Griddle, you must duct out.

Maximum lengths of ducting runs:

Hoods with 150mm outlets
   4 metres and one 90º bend
   3 metres and two 90º bends
   2 metres and three 90º bends

Hoods with 200mm outlets
   5 metres of 200mm flexible commercial aluminium foil ducting.

Height above hotplates - chimney hoods

The chimney hood should be positioned 650mm to 750mm above the Britannia hotplate surface, and must not be positioned lower than 650mm. If you're using a Britannia back panel the height is pre-determined at 660mm.

Before ordering your chimney hood, measure your ceiling height – using the line drawing in our brochure – to check everything will fit. If you have any problems please contact our Product Support Department, who can advise on all technical matters, including coping with lower than average ceilings.

Canopy hoods

A canopy hood is the perfect choice if you want all the benefits of a cooker hood without impacting on your kitchen design. It's the perfect accompaniment to a traditional range cooker, in a country-style kitchen where a statement hood would not suit the design. Hidden discreetly within your cabinetry, our compact but powerful canopy cooker hoods keep your kitchen fresh and hygienic.

Canopy cooker hoods are designed for fitting into an aperture of a canopy housing, which can be of metal or cabinetry construction such as an over-mantle arrangement. If you're having canopy housing constructed, it will be beneficial to have an encatchment area in the underside – a recess to contain fumes and vapour before the canopy motor extracts these away. If the underside of the canopy housing is totally flat, you risk fumes spilling around the front and/or sides. If it's made of a combustible material it must be a minimum of 650mm above the Britannia hotplate. If it's above another make of appliance, consult the manufacturer.

Choosing your canopy hood

All Britannia canopy hoods are designed to be suitable for ducting out or recycling, feature halogen lights to illuminate the cooking area, and operate at noise levels lower than normal conversation (60dB).

However, Intimo includes Advanced Sensor Control, which detects steam and smoke to automatically turn on the hood. Once no further vapours are detected, the hood operates for a further ten minutes before automatically switching off. Meanwhile, the Latour features quick release grease filters, which are dishwasher-proof and have an alarm to tell you when cleaning is needed.

A canopy hood is great above a range cooker sited in a disused chimney breast. Model Intimo is recommended above standard Britannia 90cm and 100cm range cookers, while the more powerful twin motor Latour model would be ideal above a larger cooker.

Still need help?

If you require support when choosing a cooker hood, get in touch with our team.

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