How to Clean a Stove Range Hood

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In the kitchen you may turn on the fan of the range hood once in a while, but it's amazing how filthy something that you almost never touch can get. All of the grease somehow rises and coats the whole inside of the range hood. It's hard to keep it clean but it doesn't have to be hard to get it clean.

Things You'll Need

  • Dishwashing liquid
  • Ammonia
  • Rubber gloves
  • Foaming bathroom tub and tile cleaner
  • Start by knowing how your range hood is put together. Some styles are made with vents that go outside the house. They carry the smoke, grease and the cooking odors from the kitchen to the outdoors through a vent that goes through the attic to the roof. The second type of hood is made without a vent. It's designed with filters that are permanent metal mesh or ones that contain charcoal to absorb the cooking odors and the smoke from the air as you cook. The charcoal filters must be replaced every six months or so. Read the manufacturer's guide for information on how often your filter manufacturer says this should be done.

  • Put on the rubber gloves. Mix up a bucket of hot water with dishwashing liquid and add some ammonia to it –about 1 cup per bucket. The sudsy ammonia is great for cleaning grease. Wipe down the whole outer surface of the range hood. If it's really stubborn grease that doesn't want to wipe off, use some of the foaming bathroom tub and tile cleaner and let it sit for five minutes. It's nice and thick so it should stay on there just fine. After the five minutes, wipe it down and all the grease should come right off.

  • Remove the filter cover. There should be two to four holders that you can just turn to get the filter off. It should slide off. Immerse it in hot water and dishwashing liquid and you can add about half a cup of ammonia to the sink for this, too. Let it sit for about five minutes. You will probably have to turn it upside down and soak the other end, too. If there's a charcoal filter, take it out and if it hasn't been changed in a good while, you'll need to replace it. Don't wash the charcoal filters as they won't work well after they've gotten wet. If it's a mesh filter, let it soak in the sink as you did the filter cover. You can clean it gently with a rag but if you take a brush to it, you'll damage the mesh. It'll flatten in places and it won't filter the grease as well so handle it carefully.

  • Wash down the whole surface under the hood while the filters are out. Wipe down the fan blades with the ammonia, dish liquid and hot water mixture. Change the water before you use it if it's gotten really greasy or if it's cold. Wipe all the sides and top with this. If it's stubborn and doesn't want to come clean, you can spray this with the bathroom tub and tile cleaner also. Let it sit for five minutes and the grease should wipe right off.

  • Put the new charcoal filter in if the range hood is really dry. Put the mesh filter back in after it and the hood have dried thoroughly as well. Put the filter cover back on and turn the holders. Your range hood should look terrific!

Tips & Warnings

  • Wear gloves when you work with ammonia. It can make your hands dry, raw and sore or itchy.
  • Open the windows or put on the fans or air conditioning so that the ammonia smell won't bother you.

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