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Cooling and Ventilation Systems Category: Range Hood Fans

Problem:

Range hood fan poorly removes smoke, odor and grease / water vapor from your kitchen.

Tools / Materials (See Below for Applicability):

  • Screwdriver (or other fastening device as determined by the manufacturer's use of fasteners)

  • Voltage meter

  • Scrubber brush

  • Vacuum

  • Plumber's snake (or a long stick to which you'll attach a the dampened cloth/rag in order to reach hard areas of range hood fan ducting)

  • Dampened cloth/rag

  • Bucket of warm water and general soap/detergent therein

  • New range hood fan motor replacement

Solution:

 

Range hood fans and bathroom exhaust fans alike, essentially, are each just a motor attached with blades or propellers.  If your range hood fan poorly removes smoke, odor and grease / water vapor from your kitchen, either of two causes are the following: 1) Your range hood fan ducting is cluttered / clogged with accumulated debris; or 2) Your range hood fan motor is failing in operation (and must be replaced).

Caution: When dealing with any device that requires electrical power, make sure you take precautions before you work on it, including disconnecting the power.

If your range hood fan poorly removes smoke, odor and grease / water vapor from your kitchen, do the following:

  1. Remove the fasteners (e.g., screws) from the cover of the range hood fan and take off the cover to gain access to the interior thereof, using either a screwdriver or other fastener device that is more appropriate.

  2. As a precaution, use a voltage meter to make sure that the wires connected to the fan are not live (have no power running through them).  (You should have disconnected the power to the fan from the circuit breaker long ago, if you haven't done so already.)

  3. Remove the grease filter and submerge it into a bucket of warm water and general soap / detergent; scrub and wipe off all particles/debris (such as grease) foreign to the original composition of the filter.

  4. Having a clear view of the range hood fan, disconnect any cord from it and remove it, using a screwdriver or other fastener device that is more appropriate.  (Most fans do not require the need for dealing with any electrical wires in order to replace a fan motor.  In fact, most fan motors simply are inserted into a receptacle within the fan housing and removed just as easily.)

  5. Having done so, use the dampened cloth/rag, soaked in a general detergent/soap, to clean the propellers / blades of the removed range hood fan with a scrubber brush.

  6. Then use a vacuum and its wand extender to vacuum up all "chunks" of accumulated debris found in the ductwork itself.

  7. Follow this with a wet wipe of the interior ductwork, using the dampened cloth/rag securely attached to a long stick or otherwise tied to the end of a hand-cranked plumber's snake to have said cloth/rag "barrel" through the ductwork in giving it a good clean.

  8. Finally, reinsert the grease filter and the fan motor back into place, and put the cover of the range hood fan back into place by securing it with the fasteners (e.g., screws) that originally were removed to provide access for the aforesaid installation.

  9. Restore the power, and the range hood fan should then be working normally as it once did.

  10. If the above does not work, you must follow the cautionary precautions set forth above (disconnect power to fan from the breaker and ensure no power to fan by using a voltage meter), and once again remove the cover of the range hood fan and the range hood fan motor itself to take to a home improvement store or appliance parts store (or shop online) for a fan motor replacement.

  11. Install the new fan motor replacement just as you saw the old one installed.  In almost all instances, this just involves the act of the inserting the fan motor replacement into its designated receptacle within the fan housing.

  12. Finally, put the cover of the range hood fan back into place by securing it with the fasteners (e.g., screws) that originally were removed to provide access for the aforesaid installation.

  13. Reconnect the power, and the range hood fan should then be working normally as it once did.

Ed the Handyman

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Your Handyman Zone Team

 

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