Chimney Vs Exhaust Fan: Which is Best for Kitchen in India? (2023)

Chimney Vs Exhaust Fan: Which is Better for Indian Kitchen?

Chimney Vs Exhaust fan– Which is best for your kitchen? In this article, you will get to know everything about it. Since I have used both in my kitchen, I can provide you with a better guide on this.

We will compare and contrast both at all major points so make sure you read this article until the end.

I guess you already know why an exhaust fan or chimney is necessary for a kitchen. So here I won’t explain much about it, rather we’ll begin talking about their work mechanisms.

How does the chimney work?

Chimney Vs Exhaust Fan: How different the chimney works from the exhaust Fan

A kitchen chimney, also known as a range hood, is an electronic appliance installed above your cooking stove or cooktop to remove smoke, steam, heat, airborne grease, and cooking odors from the air in the kitchen.

The chimney consists of a canopy or hood that covers the cooking area and a ventilation system that draws in the contaminated air. The ventilation system is usually made up of a motorized fan (also called a chimney motor) and a duct that leads the contaminated air outside the house.

However, you may also install a chimney without a duct, known as a ductless chimney. (Read more: Duct Vs Ductless chimney)

When the cooking process begins, the contaminated air is drawn into the hood by the fan. As the air passes through the hood, it encounters a series of filters, which trap grease, smoke, and other particles. The filtered air then passes through the duct and is expelled outside the house through an exhaust pipe or vent.

Now a chimney can be filterless and come in different types and sizes also. You may read our chimney buying guide for a comprehensive guide.

How does the exhaust fan work?

Chimney Vs Exhaust Fan: Which works better?

Similar to a chimney, an exhaust fan in a kitchen is designed to remove smoke, steam, and other pollutants that are generated during cooking. It works by drawing in the air from the kitchen and then venting it outside. Let me elaborate on it…

So, an exhaust fan is usually installed on the ceiling or the wall above the stove. When you turn on the exhaust fan, it creates a negative pressure zone in the kitchen. This causes air to be drawn into the area around the stove. As the air moves towards the stove, it picks up smoke, steam, and other pollutants that are produced during cooking. The air is then drawn up through the fan and out of the house through a duct.

However, some people also install it without a duct, which I don’t recommend generally. Some modern exhaust fans also come with a filter (similar to a baffle filter in chimneys) that can trap grease and other particles.

Now exhaust fans come in different sizes and airflow capacities. I highly recommend reading this article for a better guide on exhaust fans.

Read also: 10 Most Useful Kitchen Appliances in India

Chimney Vs Exhaust Fan: Which is better at…

Now you have understood, what the chimney and exhaust fan are used for and how they work. Let’s compare both items with all the major factors that we should consider…

1. Efficiency in removing smoke and gases

The primary purpose of a chimney and exhaust fan is to remove smoke, gases, and other particles. Now the question is, which works more effectively at it?

Well, a kitchen chimney is installed just above your countertop and stoves, it covers only that area so it’s obvious it would work more efficiently in removing smoke, gases, and other particles.

In addition to this, an exhaust fan can only remove smoke, heat, and foul odors outdoors whereas a chimney is designed to trap and remove a wider range of kitchen pollutants like carbon, oil, grease, fumes, heat, odors, and others.

By looking at this factor, you may say a chimney is better and you may be right. But, I would suggest if you cook less frequently or have a smaller kitchen, an exhaust fan may be sufficient.

2. Safety and Health:

A chimney and exhaust fan both have their own importance for a kitchen if you’re more concerned about safety and health.

A chimney can be better at removing harmful pollutants such as carbon monoxide, and other toxic fumes from the air but it can also pose a fire hazard if it is not cleaned and maintained properly. The creosote buildup in the chimney can ignite and cause a chimney fire.

On the other hand, an exhaust fan does not pose a fire hazard and does not require regular maintenance to prevent fires. So it may be a better option from a safety point of view.

However, when it comes to improving the air quality in your kitchen and preventing respiratory issues, a chimney could be better since it removes all the gaseous and harmful particles produced while cooking.

3. Maintenace and Cleaning:

An exhaust fan is easy to clean and maintain since it doesn’t involve lots of mechanisms. It may require regular cleaning of the blades and the cover regularly which can be done easily.

Whereas a chimney with filters may require periodic cleaning and maintenance. However, if you buy the best filterless chimney, it doesn’t require any cleaning and maintenance. You just have to clean the oil tray whenever it gets filled.

4. Installation in the Kitchen:

An Exhaust Fan can be installed anywhere in the kitchen while a chimney need to be always installed above the countertop or stove. In general, the Exhaust fan and duct chimney both require cutting through the wall.

For installing a duct chimney, you may also have proper space in the kitchen for the duct pipe. However, if you consider a ductless chimney, you may not need to worry about the space.

Overall, an Exhaust Fan is easy to install kitchen.

5. Costs Effectiveness:

If you’re familiar with the prices of exhaust fans and chimneys, you should know that an exhaust fan is way cheaper than a chimney.

You can buy an exhaust fan for under INR 2000, and it’s also easier to install. On the other hand, a kitchen chimney may cost anywhere from INR 5000 to over INR 50000, depending on the type and brand of the chimney.

Needless to say, an exhaust fan is more cost-effective. If you’re on a tight budget, you may want to consider getting an exhaust fan instead.

[Read also: 7 best chimneys under ₹15,000]

6. Lifespan and Servicing:

Chimneys generally have a longer lifespan compared to exhaust fans. A chimney is built in a way that prevents oil and grease particles from affecting its motor, allowing it to function for many years. This is why chimney motors typically come with a warranty of 5-15 years.

However, chimneys may also require servicing, which can be a time-consuming process.

On the other hand, exhaust fans are built with a simple motor that can easily trap oil particles, potentially decreasing their lifespan. Exhaust fans typically come with a warranty of only 1-2 years.

7. Modern Kitchen and Cleanliness:

If you want a modern kitchen, an exhaust fan may not be a good choice for you. A chimney is well-known for its aesthetic look in the kitchen.

Additionally, when you use an exhaust fan, your kitchen wall near the stove area will get filthy, which you may have to clean regularly. Whereas, in the case of a chimney, you won’t need to worry about these things.

Moreover, most chimneys from Faber and Elica brands also come with smart features, such as motion or gesture control, which make the chimney convenient to use.

Chimney Vs Exhaust Fan: Which is best to consider?

After considering all the factors and your kitchen requirements, you may have made a decision on whether to buy a chimney or an exhaust fan. However, if you’re still on the fence, let me help you out.

In general, Indian dinners involve cooking oily foods, frying, and using masalas that often produce lots of smoke, gases, and fumes, making it necessary to have a chimney in the kitchen. However, if you don’t cook with oils and don’t produce lots of smoke, grease, and oil particles, you may consider going with an exhaust fan.

Below, I’ll list all the major advantages and disadvantages of both chimneys and exhaust fans that you should consider.

Advantages of Chimneys

  • Ideal for kitchens that prepare oily foods often.
  • Efficient at removing smoke, oils, and grease particles.
  • Modern and aesthetic look.
  • Less noise level.
  • Better filter the air and improve the health risks.
  • High lifespan and warranty period.

Disadvantages of Chimneys

  • A chimney can be expensive.
  • It can also pose a fire hazard if it is not cleaned and maintained properly.
  • Complex installation.

Advantages of Exhaust Fan

  • Ideal for kitchens that don’t cook oily foods often.
  • Cost-effective.
  • Simple Installation.
  • Easy to clean and maintain.
  • Improve safety and health risks.
  • Less energy consumption.

Disadvantages of Exhaust Fan

  • May not be efficient at removing smoke, oils, and greases.
  • Less lifespan and warranty period.
  • Cannot filter the air.

Now It’s Your Turn:

In this Chimney vs Exhaust Fan comparison, I have discussed everything you need to know before choosing one for your kitchen. Additionally, I have listed the advantages and disadvantages of installing each appliance.

I hope you found this article enjoyable and informative. Now, I would like to hear from you:

Based on the points covered, have you decided to buy a chimney or an exhaust fan?

If you have any further questions or concerns, please leave a comment and I would be happy to help.

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