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Steam from a pot being pulled by a downdraft vent

WHAT IS A DOWNDRAFT RANGE OR COOKTOP?

Downdraft ranges and cooktops have an integrated ventilation system that helps to whisk away smoke, steam and odors. This venting solution removes the need for traditional overhead range hoods or microwave-hood combinations, creating a streamlined centralized cooking space.

 

Use this guide to learn more about downdraft ventilation, its benefits and the types of downdraft appliances you can add to your kitchen.

Table of Contents

HOW IT WORKS
How does downdraft work?

EFFECTIVE?
Is downdraft ventilation effective?

BENEFITS
What are the benefits of downdraft?

TYPES
What are the types of downdraft appliances?

Food cooking on a gas cooktop with downdraft ventilation Food cooking on a gas cooktop with downdraft ventilation

HOW DOES A DOWNDRAFT RANGE OR COOKTOP WORK?

Downdraft ventilation pulls smoke, steam, grease and odors out of the air surrounding your cooking surface. Depending on the model of your downdraft appliance, the air is either drawn outside through a vent or it gets pulled through a filter and sent back to your kitchen.

DOWNDRAFT VS. RANGE HOOD: WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE?

Range hoods are separate appliances mounted above your cooktop or range to remove steam, smoke and odors as they rise up through the air. Downdraft vents on a range or cooktop are typically in the middle of the cooktop and pull the soiled air across the cooking surface and through the vent.

If you already have a standard cooktop or range but want to enjoy the minimalist, streamlined appeal of downdraft ventilation, there are also separate downdraft ventilation options that can be installed behind your cooking surface.

DO DOWNDRAFT RANGES AND COOKTOPS NEED TO BE VENTED?

Downdraft ranges and cooktops can be ducted or ductless, meaning that depending on the model. The air can either be vented outside through the floor or the wall, or recirculated within the kitchen using a filtration system. 

JennAir® downdraft vent hood JennAir® downdraft vent hood

IS DOWNDRAFT VENTILATION EFFECTIVE?

Both downdraft and overhead ventilation systems work effectively to keep your kitchen free from smoke, grease and odors. Downdraft ventilation is simply a different venting configuration that creates a sleek and refined look in a high-end kitchen.

CAN YOU USE A DOWNDRAFT VENT WITH A GAS COOKTOP?

Downdraft venting can be used with both gas or electric cooktops and ranges, however, you may need to make adjustments to accommodate for the direction of airflow. If you’re using downdraft ventilation on a gas cooktop, use a lower fan setting or a higher burner setting for optimal results.

JennAir® electric cooktop with heating elements turned on JennAir® electric cooktop with heating elements turned on

4 BENEFITS OF DOWNDRAFT VENTILATION

Using downdraft ventilation has several benefits ranging from aesthetics to functional power. Explore the advantages of downdraft venting below to help you decide if it's time to make the switch.

1. Separate downdraft hoods can help create more kitchen layout options, as the venting system doesn’t require overhead space for installation. 

2. Ranges and cooktops with downdraft ventilation have an integrated venting system, eliminating the need for a separate unit.

3. Downdraft vents can work effectively, similar to an overhead hood, with a powerful motor that quickly clears the air of smoke and odors.

4. Downdraft ranges, cooktops and hoods allow for unrestricted sightlines within the kitchen, creating a clean and minimalist aesthetic.

Scallops cooking on an electric cooktop with downdraft ventilation Scallops cooking on an electric cooktop with downdraft ventilation

TYPES OF DOWNDRAFT VENTILATION

You can enjoy the discreet power of downdraft ventilation with three appliance options: downdraft ranges, downdraft cooktops, and downdraft vent hoods. Learn more about the different types of downdraft ventilation below.

JennAir® gas range JennAir® gas range

DOWNDRAFT RANGES

Downdraft ranges perform like a standard gas or electric range with the added benefit of an integrated downdraft venting system typically located in the middle of the cooktop. These high-end ranges pull air across the cooking surface to protect your cabinetry and other kitchen appliances from residual grease, steam or smoke. 

EXPLORE JENNAIR® DOWNDRAFT RANGES

JennAir® downdraft ranges offer the dramatic detail of a high-end range with the refined power of downdraft ventilation. Explore electric and dual fuel options below to reinvigorate your kitchen.

Two pots heating on a JennAir® gas cooktop Two pots heating on a JennAir® gas cooktop

DOWNDRAFT COOKTOPS

Like downdraft ranges, downdraft cooktops are equipped with an integrated venting system located in the middle of the cooking surface to pull cooking soils from the air. The built-in ventilation system is also typically quiet, allowing you the peace of cooking or entertaining guests without disruption.

EXPLORE JENNAIR® DOWNDRAFT COOKTOPS

JennAir brand offers a selection of gas and electric downdraft cooktops that provide the optimal cooking performance of a high-end cooktop and the quick and efficient ventilation of a downdraft venting system.

JennAir® downdraft vent hood JennAir® downdraft vent hood

DOWNDRAFT VENT HOODS

A downdraft vent hood is a separate appliance that can be installed behind most ranges and cooktops. These retractable vent hoods offer more flexibility than overhead hoods, as they require less space for installation and aren’t visible when not in use.

EXPLORE JENNAIR® DOWNDRAFT VENT HOODS

Enjoy the luxury of downdraft ventilation with JennAir® downdraft vent hoods. Browse select models with features like a Reversible Motor Box that can be positioned facing forward or backward, Hidden Slide Controls that keep controls out of sight for a sleek appearance, or a 600 CFM High-Performance Blower that helps to quickly eliminate smoke and odors.

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