How many of us have faced issues with the faulty installation of kitchen chimneys and how it ruined the chimney experience? If you are someone who has experienced this in the past or want to avoid an incorrect installation altogether, you have landed at the right place. Though most brands offer free or paid installation service, it is always worthwhile to have some prior knowledge about the same. It gives you a fair idea about the work they are doing.
If you don’t want to spend some extra money on installation and are looking for a quick Do It Yourself How To Do Guide, our article will serve the same purpose. So, without much ado, let’s dive into the details of the kitchen chimney installation process.
Tools Needed For Installing a Kitchen Chimney
Even before we begin with the process of installing a kitchen chimney, one must ensure that all the tools required for proper installation are available with you. The essential tools include:
- Measuring Tape
- Marker Pen
- Tools Available with the Chimney
Once you have assembled all your tools, you are ready to begin with, the chimney installation process.
Step by Step Process of Chimney Installation
Chimney installation is not as cumbersome as it seems. There are a few steps that you have to follow, and you are good to go. Let’s discuss the steps in detail.
Decide the Place Where You Want to Install the Chimney
Zeroing on the place where you want to install your chimney is one of the most crucial steps. It majorly depends on the mounting type of the chimney. For example, an island chimney will have to be fixed to the ceiling, hanging in the centre just above your stove. In contrast, both wall-mounted and built-in kitchen chimneys are placed against the wall.
Many households with L-shaped kitchens are opting for corner chimneys. As the name suggests, these have to be placed in the corner. Apart from the mounting style, the size of the chimney also matters. You would not want to purchase a larger chimney only to realise that it won’t fit in the space where you wanted to place it. Therefore, it is always recommended to measure the area before purchasing a kitchen chimney.
Measure the Distance Between the Chimney and the Cooktop
When it comes to the efficiency of your kitchen hood, the distance between the chimney and the cooktop plays an essential role. It determines how well your chimney will suck smoke and odour. Ideally, the length should be anywhere between twenty-four to thirty inches.
If the distance between the cooktop and the chimney is less, there are chances of accidents like the chimney catching fire, etc. But that doesn’t mean that you install it way higher than required. In that case, the chimney performance will be compromised, and it won’t be able to suck fumes, odours, etc., as efficiently. Often, the user manual mentions the appropriate distance that you should keep for that particular chimney. But, if it is not mentioned, there are ways to determine it depending on a few factors.
The Cooktop Type That You are Using
Induction cooktops are generally more flexible in terms of the chimney height. But, if you are using open gas stoves, it is recommended that you fix your chimney at least 24 inches above the stove to avoid any mishap.
Duct’s Length and the Number of Bends it has
While most kitchen chimneys come with a six feet duct pipe but, for households with a duct above that length, an eight to ten feet long duct pipe is recommended. Anything less than six feet or more than ten feet will lower the chimney’s efficiency. Also, make sure that the pipe’s bends are not more than two or three for greater efficacy.
Suction Capacity of the Chimney
Suppose your kitchen chimney has a low suction capacity, let’s say 400 m3/hr. In that case, you must ensure that it is not installed above thirty inches—the reason being its ineffectiveness in sucking smoke and odours from a large distance. However, model and brand also play an essential role in this factor.
Positioning of the Stove
You must be wondering how the way you position your stove impacts the chimney’s height. Well, there is a significant relationship between the two. A longer duct pipe will be required if you set your stove near the sidewalls of the kitchen. This may lead to more bends in the pipe and reduced efficiency. However, if you place your stove close to the outer wall of your kitchen, you can use a shorter duct pipe with lesser bends without the performance getting affected.
Put Markings on the Wall for Fastening the Chimney
Now comes the messy part. After you have decided on your location and the height of the chimney, it’s time to fasten it. Generally, the installation kit provided by the brand comes with all the essential tools that you will require for installing a kitchen chimney. Use the measuring tape and a marker pen to mark the points on the wall for installation. The next step is to make two holes for the screws to be attached.
Once the above steps are done and the chimney is attached with the hood, you can then fasten the chimney to the wall. Make sure that the holes that you drill are at least 6 mm inside the wall. Before you fix the chimney, ensure that everything is in place and fits well. Once you are sure of the arrangement, you can then fix the chimney permanently.
Make the Duct Cut Out
If you have to install a chimney with a duct, you have to make a duct cut out if you don’t have a pre-existing one. A duct is nothing but a circular opening of about six inches in diameter made on the outer wall of the kitchen. In case there is already a duct cut out, you can use the same. However, you must keep in mind that the height of the duct should not be less than six feet or greater than ten feet above the floor. Also, ensure that the hole is made so that there are minimum bends in the duct pipe. However, if it is a ductless chimney, there is no need for this step.
Use Universal Spigot
Many new-age chimneys are coming with a universal spigot already attached to them. It enhances the user’s convenience and allows you to connect the exhaust pipe of 4, 5, and 6-inch diameter without any fuss.
Now comes the most crucial step of the chimney installation – Wiring. A kitchen chimney is no different from other electrical appliances when it comes to wiring. Like other devices, it also needs black and white wires. Green wires are required for the purpose of earthing to prevent any short circuits.
In the same way, plugs are fixed, keeping the user’s convenience in mind. Once all the wiring is done, you must switch on the chimney to see if everything is working correctly or not. And, once you are assured of its proper working, your chimney installation process is done.
Start Using Your Kitchen Chimney
Well, this is an additional step, which is not part of the installation process but is highly recommended. Once you have installed your chimney and it has started working, don’t straight away begin with your cooking. Let it operate for at least five minutes to gauge the performance.
This is the time when you have to adjust the speed of your chimney according to your cooking requirements. There are generally three different speed options to choose from, which can vary from brand to brand and model to model.
Additional Factors to Keep in Mind Before Installing a Kitchen Chimney
Apart from the nitty-gritty of installing a kitchen chimney, there are a few other factors that are as important as the basic ones for optimum chimney performance. Let’s have a look at some of these factors.
A kitchen chimney can operate in two modes – an exhaust mode and a recirculation mode. For the best chimney performance, ideally, you should go for the exhaust mode. Exhaust mode keeps your kitchen clean and fresh by driving out all the sucked smoke via a duct pipe outside the kitchen.
In contrast, recirculation mode only filters the air and recirculates it back into the kitchen environment. It is more preferred when you have a ductless chimney. However, with the recirculation mode, the condensation build-up inside the kitchen will be more than with the exhaust mode. Therefore, make your choice accordingly.
If there is no availability of ducts or duct pipes, we recommend attaching a carbon filter to your chimney. It will absorb all the odours effectively. Most chimneys come with a carbon filter, but in case there isn’t one, you should ask for it. This can increase the installation costs but will surely be worth it. Also, remember to change the carbon filter every three months for best efficacy.
Bends in the Duct Pipe
The number of bends in the duct pipe depends on the placement and the height of the kitchen chimney. Like we have discussed above, a chimney located on the sidewalls and at a greater height will naturally have more bends than the one located on the outer wall and at an appropriate height. However, the least number of bends, preferably not more than two or three, are recommended for optimum performance.
The more the number of bends, the less will be the chimney’s efficiency as smoke will stay stuck inside the pipe instead of moving out. Therefore, take care of the position and height of the chimney for reducing the number of bends and optimising the performance.
Safety Measures to Take While Installing a Chimney
Since a kitchen chimney is an expensive and massive electrical appliance, it has to be handled with care and installed safely. There are a few safety measures that you can take to install your kitchen hood properly, without any damage. Let’s have a look at them.
- Even before you begin with the installation process, turning off the main power supply can help a great deal in preventing accidents.
- Ensure that the wires are not active before you hold them to prevent electric shocks.
- Wear rubber gloves while working with electrical wires.
- Ensure that the chimney is fixed correctly before fastening it to the wall.
- Make sure that the plug points are working properly before installing a chimney.
- Follow the instructions mentioned in the manual strictly.
- Keep children away while you install a chimney because the tools and wires used can be dangerous for them.
- In case you face any trouble while installing, don’t shy away from calling an authorised technician. Simply taking a back seat can help you avoid any damage or mishap.
With the Indian style of cooking, there is no way that you can function without a kitchen chimney installed at your place. But, no, installation does not have to be at an extra cost always. If you have owned a chimney earlier and are confident about installing it on your own, or do it yourself guide will serve a great purpose.
Do not forget to refer to your chimney’s user manual, too, as it will have the specific details about the kitchen hood that you own. However, if it is your first time buying a kitchen chimney and you are not sure about the installation, we recommend going for an authorised technician who can install the chimney for you. We still hope that this article would have given a brief idea so that you understand the process better.
Did you install the chimney yourself? How was your experience? And, if you feel that we have missed something in our article regarding chimney installation. Please write to us in the comments section below. We would address the issue as soon as possible.