There are many benefits to owning a gas range. Gas ranges are more efficient than electric models and cook food evenly, although the purchase price may be higher. You may be remodeling and going from electric to gas appliances. Do gas ranges require venting, or is this an optional expense?
In most states and municipalities, residential gas ranges are not required to be vented because the U.S. does not have a uniform code in place. However, investing more and installing a ventilation system is smart for safety’s sake.
Read on to learn the gas range venting requirements and the benefits of doing so!
Does a gas range have to be vented?
Everywhere we go, costs are rising. Is spending more money on a venting system necessary when considering a gas range? Does a gas range HAVE to be vented to meet code requirements?
No, gas ranges do not technically require venting in most parts of the U.S.. However, if you have a gas range with an open flame, it is recommended that you ventilate the area to avoid any potential safety hazards like carbon monoxide poisoning.
Venting a gas range is important for two reasons:
First, it helps to remove excess heat from the cooking area. This can help to prevent your food from overcooking and keeps you more comfortable in the process.
Second, venting also helps to remove harmful fumes and odors from the kitchen. Love seafood? Me, too, but I despise the smell of fish lingering after dinner. Proper venting can keep the air fresh instead of fishy.
Unfortunately, gas range venting doesn’t have standard requirements across the country. Different municipalities have different building codes. To clear up any confusion, make sure to check with the regulators in your city and state.
Reasons to vent a gas range
Gas is dangerous, and any appliance that uses it should be handled with care because health issues can occur.
Experts recommend venting gas stoves because of the potential for carbon monoxide poisoning and the emission of PM 2.5 particles. In addition to health reasons, venting reduces condensation buildup inside the range, makes the kitchen more comfortable, and decreases odors.
When gas burns, it produces carbon monoxide, which is a colorless and odorless gas that can be deadly if inhaled in large quantities. Venting your gas stove allows the carbon monoxide to escape outside instead of building up inside your home. So, while gas ranges don’t require venting, you should consider doing it for your personal safety and that of your family.
Gas ranges also emit PM 2.5 particles. PM 2.5 particles are microscopic particles, found in polluted air, that can travel to the lungs and respiratory tract, causing illness. Children, older adults, and those with established heart and lung issues are at greater risk from exposure.
Safety aside, venting will make your kitchen and home more comfortable, and keep your gas range functioning properly.
Dangers of Non-vented Gas Ranges
What’s the big deal about gas and vents?
Non-vented gas ranges can lead to carbon monoxide poisoning and contribute to a fire. Ventilation can greatly reduce these potentially fatal problems.
Carbon monoxide is a colorless and odorless gas produced when fuel is burned. It can cause headaches, dizziness, nausea, and even death. Venting a gas range to the outside of the home prevents this dangerous substance from building up and being inhaled.
Venting also helps prevent fires in the kitchen by removing heat and smoke. If a fire starts in the oven because your pie bubbled over, a good ventilation system can keep it contained.
A well-vented kitchen is a safer kitchen!
Tips for properly venting a gas range
Wondering how to vent your gas range? Making the transition from electric to gas? This job is for professionals, but you need to be informed as a consumer.
Proper size, installation, and maintenance are required to get the most out of your gas-range ventilation system.
Here are some tips for adequately venting a gas range:
- Ensure the range is installed by a professional according to local building code requirements.
- Make sure the exhaust fan is the proper size for your range. Ideally 6 inches wider than the cooking surface.
- Use an exhaust fan or range hood that vents to the outside of the home if possible.
- Clean the filters regularly to prevent blockages.
- Make sure the exhaust duct is installed correctly and sealed to prevent leaks.
- Check the venting system regularly to ensure it is working correctly.
Different types of range hoods
Several types of range hoods are available, each with its own benefits and drawbacks.
Your kitchen and housing setup will determine which range hoods are suitable. Apartment living may limit your options unless your landlord has already installed a ventilation system. Some kitchen designs make one choice more viable than another.
Here are some of the most popular types of range hoods:
1. Under-cabinet range hoods
As the name implies, these hoods are installed under the cabinets. They can be difficult to clean and not the most effective at removing smoke and odors because of their location. However, they are an affordable option.
2. Wall-mounted range hoods
These hoods are installed between 24-36 feet above the range. Wall-mounted hoods offer more power and ventilation than under-cabinet models. Plus, they can be a design focus in the kitchen. However, they can be expensive and require professional installation.
3. Island range hoods
A big island in the kitchen is what kitchen dreams are made of. Add a range, and the island becomes a mega-functional piece of real estate. Island hoods are installed in the ceiling above the cooktop. They are very effective at removing smoke and odors but are also expensive and require professional installers.
4. Downdraft range hoods
These hoods are installed next to the cooktop and draw smoke and odors down into the range. They are not as effective as other range hoods but are more affordable and easier to install.
5. Ventless range hoods
Do you live in an apartment, but still want to reduce exposure to harmful pollutants? A ventless hood may be your only choice. These hoods work like a fan and do not require any ductwork. They do have limitations since they aren’t vented to the outside. Pollutants can recirculate, and they can’t remove smoke or odors as well as vented versions.
What is the best range hood for a gas range?
There is no definitive answer for choosing the best range hood for a gas range. A lot depends on the aesthetic you are going for in your kitchen and its layout. To vent to the outside of the home, ductwork needs to be installed, which can be a challenge in some kitchens.
Factors to consider when choosing a range hood include your kitchen setup, the size of your range, the CFM (cubic feet per minute) rating, the sones (sound output level), and the overall compatibility with your specific range model.
- Consider the layout of your kitchen. Can it support the necessary ductwork to the outside of your home?
- Measure your range and the space above it. Ranges can come in widths from 24-36 inches. It’s recommended to choose a hood width 6 inches longer.
- Know your cubic feet per minute (CFM). The range you have and how much you cook dictates the amount of power you need from the hood fan.
- Acknowledge your sound tolerance. If you are greatly annoyed by loud noises (I’m looking at you, dishwasher), you don’t want a hood fan that gets under your skin. The lower the sone number, the quieter the range fan will be.
Is it Safe to Have a Gas Stove Without a Vent?
When there isn’t a strict requirement in place, it’s easy to put ventilation on the back burner. But, is it safe to have a gas stove with no ventilation?
No, having a gas stove without a vent is unsafe. Gas stoves need to be vented to the outside to prevent dangerous gases from building up inside your home.
The bottom line is that not choosing to vent your gas range can have health consequences.
How do you vent a kitchen without a hood?
Over-the-range hoods aren’t always feasible. Your landlord might not appreciate you knocking holes in the wall to install ductwork. How can you keep your family safe?
There are a few ways to vent a kitchen without a hood. Under-cabinet vents or a downdraft system are options. A ventless hood will at least help to circulate air and absorb cooking fumes.
The key to any effective ventilation system is making sure it is installed correctly. If you are relying on a hood system that does not vent to the outside, purchase a carbon monoxide alarm for an extra layer of protection.
Summary of “Do gas ranges require venting?”
The lack of gas range venting standards can make the issue confusing. While gas ranges don’t technically have to be vented, it is an important safety practice. Venting helps protect against health issues caused by carbon monoxide and lung irritants. There are various ways to vent a gas range, and the best option for your home will depend on your specific needs and preferences.
Can you have a stove without a vent?
Since most building codes do not require a stove to be vented, it is possible to skip this step. However, it would not be in the best interest of your health.
Are hoods required for gas stoves?
Hoods are not legally required for gas stoves but are highly recommended.
Do gas ranges produce carbon monoxide?
Yes, gas ranges do produce carbon monoxide.
Is it safe to have a gas stove without a vent?
No, having a gas stove without a vent isn’t safe and could have health consequences.
How much CFM do you need to vent a gas range?
The amount of CFM needed to vent a gas range will depend on the range itself and your cooking frequency.