The Ultimate Guide to Cleaning Your Rangehood Filter

When was the last time you cleaned your rangehood filter? 

It’s easy to forget how important it is, and it tends to collect grease over time. 

Your rangehood filter plays a crucial role in ensuring your safety, and regular cleaning is key to its performance. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore the importance of cleaning and maintaining rangehood filters, the various filter types, signs that it’s time for a clean, recommended cleaning frequency, and step-by-step instructions for a spotless filter.  

medium shot happy couple green kitchen

Why is Cleaning and Maintaining Rangehood Filters Important?

 

Rangehood filters help trap grease, smoke, and other airborne particles during cooking. Over time, these filters can become clogged, reducing their effectiveness, which is why you need to keep them clean for the following reasons: 

  • Improved Air Quality: Clean filters ensure better ventilation, removing harmful pollutants from your kitchen. Children are at a higher risk of asthma due to gas cooktops and ducted rangehoods help in reducing that by improving air quality. 
  • Enhanced Efficiency: A clean filter allows your rangehood to function at its peak, effectively removing odours and preventing grease buildup.
  • Fire Safety: Regular cleaning reduces the risk of grease fires, a common hazard in kitchens. According to NSW Fire and Rescue, maintaining a clean rangehood filter is deemed one of the most critical measures to ensure the safety of your home against potential fires. 

couple-home-spending-time-together

Types of Rangehood Filters:

 

Type of Filter  Usage 
Mesh Filters  Layered aluminium or stainless-steel mesh and are ideal for trapping grease. 
Baffle Filters  Constructed with curved panels, baffle filters effectively separate grease and smoke. 
Charcoal Filters  Ductless rangehoods remove odours by absorbing them. 

 

Signs That Your Rangehood Filter Needs Cleaning: 

 

Modern rangehoods, such as Fisher & Paykel rangehoods, often have a Filter Alert button to let you know when it’s time for a filter cleaning. If you don’t have this feature, watch for these signs that signal the need for a filter cleaning: 

  • Reduced Suction: Noticeable decrease in the hood’s suction power.
  • Grease Buildup: Filter surface is covered in chunky grease. 
  • Unpleasant Odors: Lingering cooking odours that don’t dissipate as quickly. 
  • Increased Noise: Louder operation due to restricted airflow.

How Often Should You Clean Rangehood Filters? 

 

The frequency at which you should clean your rangehood filter is influenced by two main factors: your cooking habits and the size of your household. Your cleaning schedule will differ if you live alone or have a family of four, as the volume and variety of cooking can impact the grease that accumulates in your rangehood filter.  

Although, you can follow this for a general guideline: 

  • Light Cooking: Clean every 3-6 months. 
  • Regular Cooking: Clean every 1-3 months. 
  • Heavy Cooking: Clean monthly or as needed. 

woman cooking kitchen rangehood

Step-by-Step Guide to Cleaning Rangehood Filters: 

 

Follow these steps to clean your rangehood filter effectively: 

  1. Safety: For safety, turn off and unplug the rangehood if possible. 
  2. Filter Removal: Gently remove the filter by pulling a tab or unscrewing it, depending on your model. 
  3. Pre-Cleaning: Shake off debris or use a vacuum to get rid of surface grease. 
  4. Soaking: Submerge the filter in a sink or basin filled with hot and soapy water. Let it soak for 10-15 minutes. 
  5. Scrubbing: Use a soft brush or sponge to scrub away stubborn grease and dirt, especially within the nooks and crannies. 
  6. Rinsing: Rinse the filter thoroughly to remove soap residue. 
  7. Drying: Allow the filter to air dry completely before installing it back on the rangehood. 

Pro-tip: Most people look over rangehood cleaning as it seems like a tedious task, but here’s a handy trick for effortlessly removing grime – simply place the rangehood filters in the dishwasher. 

How to clean your rangehood filter 

 

Tips for Maintaining Rangehood Filters: 

 

To prolong the life and effectiveness of your rangehood filter, consider these tips: 

  • Regular Inspection:  

It is essential to ensure the efficient and safe operation of your rangehood by conducting regular inspections. Take a few moments to carefully examine the filter for any visible signs of wear or damage. Look out for cracks, tears, or holes in the filter material.  

  • Avoid Harsh Cleaners:  

Using harsh cleaners on your appliances or equipment can lead to unnecessary damage and wear and tear, and this principle applies especially to your filter material. To ensure the longevity and effectiveness of your filter, it’s crucial to steer clear of abrasive or corrosive cleaning agents. Opt for mild, non-abrasive detergents when cleaning your filter.  

  • Keep a Routine: Stick to a regular cleaning schedule based on how often you cook. 

Common Mistakes to Avoid When Cleaning Rangehood Filters: 

 

To ensure a successful cleaning process and maximise the lifespan of your rangehood, avoid these common mistakes: 

  • Using Harsh Chemicals and Tools: strong chemicals can damage the filter material and affect performance. Specifically, corrosive chemicals, abrasive cleaning products, citrus-based cleaning products or hard brushes and steel wool. 
  • Neglecting Drying: Make sure the filter is completely dry before reinstalling it to prevent mould growth. 
  • Forgetting Maintenance: Regular inspection and replacement, when needed, are essential for longevity. 

female hand in rubber protective сleaning cooker hood with rag in kitchen.

Professional Services for Rangehood Filters: 

 

If giving your rangehood a good clean doesn’t do the trick to improve suction or eliminate odours, it’s a good idea to call a home appliance repair expert as the issue may not be related to cleanliness. 

Renovation. Profile of concentrated middle aged man in plaid shirt touching screwdriver to lamp on kitchen range hood in modern kitchen at home

 

A clean and well-maintained rangehood filter is a vital component of a healthy kitchen. By understanding the importance of cleaning, recognising signs that your filter needs attention, and following proper cleaning techniques, you can ensure optimal performance, safety, and air quality in your kitchen.  

Don’t underestimate the impact of this simple task for a better cooking experience.

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