Ventilation is important in every cooktop so that heat and odor will be dispelled out of your house. This is especially the case if you’re cooking food that smells around the house mercilessly. For instance, fried fish is great, but the aroma spreading all over is not that pleasant.
When using an induction cooktop, you can easily install or replace a downdraft fan on your own. You don’t really need a very powerful fan for this as using induction cooktop removes all possibility of heat from spreading. If you know how induction cooktops work, you’ll know that there is no wasted heat when using this as the heat is directly transferred onto the cookware.
Your major concern therefore is to have a downdraft mainly for dispelling the odor, keeping your kitchen smelling fresh. Before you try installing a downdraft vent yourself, first know how it functions.
What is an induction cooktop downdraft fan?
An induction cooktop downdraft fan is one of the major components of your downdraft ventilation as it serves as an exhaust fan that absorbs the air and heat from your kitchen and expels it outdoors or wherever the vent leads to. Downdrafts are found behind cooktops instead of being installed overhead, as in the case of the more popular range hoods.
When in use, the downdraft is pulled up from the countertop where the fans start to pull air into the filter and out the ducts. When not in use, the downdraft retracts to a cabinet below and out of sight. This is great if you’re keeping a minimalist design in your kitchen, and even better for induction cooktops that are installed directly onto the counter.
Key Takeaway: Downdraft ventilation is best installed when you’re using cooktops as it can be installed easily on the counter where the cooktop rests. This type of ventilation is not recommended for range hoods.
How to install or replace the downdraft fan of your induction cooktop?
It’s not difficult to install or replace a downdraft for your induction cooktop. It doesn’t really require that you have DIY backgrounds as long as you can properly follow the instructions listed in the manual of your downdraft ventilation. More or less, the instructions below are the same for most downdraft models:
Step 1: Downdrafts will be installed behind your cooktop or behind the counter where the cooktop is currently installed their width should match or slightly exceed the width of the cooktop.
Step 2: Prepare the ductwork. This may be difficult or time-consuming depending on the length of the duct and the passageways. Obstructions need to be removed or you have to punch holes to complete it. If you’re only repairing or replacing an old downdraft, you can use the old vent system.
Step 3: Install the vent that you have bought. Manufacturers sell complete kits so you won’t have to worry how to mount them such as the:
Broan 273603 Eclipse 36-Inch Ventilator – Downdraft Model, Satin Aluminum Finish
- 500 CFM Interior Blower
- Automatically raises into position and turns unit on with the touch of a button. Disappears flush with the cooktop surface
- Two washable aluminum grease filters
Note: If you’re replacing only the fan, this may be difficult as most manufacturers create downdrafts as a whole, fan included. It’s better to replace the entire downdraft, although this route can be expensive.
Step 4: Simply follow the instructions written in the manual that comes inside the packaging of your chosen brands. You may need screwdrivers for this step or duct tapes to put things in place. As previously mentioned, it’s recommended to change the entire downdraft, even if only the fan is not working as most models don’t really have replacement fans.
However, if you really want to try your DIY skills, you can buy a separate fan such as the:
Phanteks PH-F140TS_OR,140mm CPU Cooler, Case and Thermal Premium Fan
- 100% compatible with high VRM Modules and high RAM heat sinks. PH-TC12LS follows INTEL's CPU Keep-Out-Zone. Low profile design. 1.85 inches tall and compatible with 2.9 inches small form factor case (74mm total with fan).
- Six 6mm C-Type nickel plated heat-pipes with slim aluminum stacked fins. Direct airflow to CPU. Improve heat distribution on the new aluminum fins. Compatible with the PH-F140HP Series. Phanteks' patented P.A.T.S technology.
- Can withstand temperatures of up to 200 DegreeC. Increases cooling performance. Deflects other thermal radiation from other heat sources. PH-F120MP High Static Pressure fan is included. PH-F120MP's new Seven Blade design.
Step 5: Connect the downdraft onto the vent. Secure it with duct tapes so that no air would leak out. Afterwards, plug it into an electronic socket and turn it on for you to test.
How to choose the right downdraft fan for your induction cooktop?
Downdraft ventilation is expensive; it usually ranges from $400 to $800. You want to get the one that will last considering the price. Therefore, we have listed a few factors that you should check:
Capacity: Check the number of CFM that the downdraft is capable of. CFM stands for cubic foot per minute, which means simply means the amount of air that can be removed in a minute. Usually downdrafts are around 900 CFM. For your induction cooktop, you won’t need a big one since it won’t be dealing with heat too much.
Exhaust: You can choose if you want your downdraft vent to direct all captured odor and heat outdoors, or simply use a filter and recirculate the air back. The latter will save you more money, as you don’t have to worry about ducts. For induction cooktops, you can go with the filter, as it is fairly effective at keeping your kitchen odor free.
Kitchen Size: Definitely go for downdraft if you have very limited kitchen space, as the pop up downdraft fan won’t take up too much space. It is relatively small and installs behind a counter. Because of the small kitchen, the downdraft is also capable enough to filter the air and blow the heat out.
If you have an industrial sized cooktop and a big kitchen however, the downdraft fan may not be enough. For this, consider getting an overhead range.
Price: Downdrafts can get really expensive so try your best to find one that is within your budget. There are definitely cheaper ones but if you feel like splurging, check out:
Bosch DHD3614UC 800 36″ Stainless Steel Downdraft Range Hood
Key Takeaway: Downdrafts are powerful little machines for their size so they are considerably expensive. Make sure to assess your needs so you’ll get a downdraft with the right size and capacity.
Ventilation is very important in the kitchen as smoke and odor can be all over the place especially if you’re doing a lot of sautéing, searing, or grilling. You’ll want to keep your kitchen smelling fresh and a downdraft is one of the most affordable ways to do it. Not to mention, a popup downdraft vent looks really sleek and cool.