Under-cabinet range hoods are used in kitchens where cabinets are located directly over the cooktop. This is a perfect place for a non-vented range hood because the hood can attach directly to the cabinets. For vented range hoods, the hood's ductwork can be routed through the cabinet, where it is out of sight, or directly out an exterior wall.
Broan-NuTone models often rise to the top among consumer reviews under-cabinet range hoods and, depending on your needs and budget, one of this company's models will make an excellent choice. For this update, we are giving top-billing to the Broan Allure 1 (Est. $140 and up) series. These range hoods, also marketed under the NuTone brand as the NuTone Allure 1, hit a sweet spot when it comes to performance, versatility and value. This is a convertible under-cabinet range hood, which means it can be installed either ducted or ductless. It's available in sizes ranging from 30 to 42 inches, and in black, white, almond, bisque or stainless steel.
The hood has two fan speeds. Its high speed is rated at 220 CFM (cubic feet per minute) at a noise level of 5 sones. At low speed, that drops to 110 CFM and 1.5 sones. Broan claims that this is 50 percent quieter than similar range hoods, and most owners agree that quiet operation is a highlight. There are also two halogen bulbs for illuminating the cooking area, and users chime in that they are bright and effective. Ductless installation is described as easy, though for ductless use you'll need to spend extra for a pair of Broan BPSF charcoal filters (Est. $30 per pair). For ducted installation, three ducting options allow for installation flexibility and two dishwasher-safe, aluminum grease filters are included.
User reviews are strong. For example, the 30 inch version of the Broan Allure 1 (also known as the Broan QS130) draws nearly 525 user reviews over its five available color options at Amazon.com, and an overall rating of 4.4 stars. Feedback elsewhere is similar. The identical range hood is sold as the NuTone Allure 1 at HomeDepot.com, and the 30 inch version (WS130) draws more than 900 reviews across its five color versions. Four of the five score identical 4.4-star ratings, and the fifth (stainless steel) does essentially as well, scoring 4.3 stars.
For those on a tight budget, and where ductless installation is either preferred or necessary, the Broan 41000 (Est. $40 and up) series of range hoods is a great alternative. This is a basic, ductless, under-cabinet range hood, and, since it requires no venting, it's very easy to install. Broan does not rate its ductless fans for either CFMs (air movement) or sones (sound level).
The Broan 41000 series is available in sizes from 21 inches to 42 inches, and in a bevy of finishes -- white, black, almond, bisque and stainless steel -- to meet the needs of any kitchen set up or décor. Features are slim, but there's a single incandescent light to illuminate the cooking surface and a two-speed fan. Cleaning is easy; a user needs to simply wipe down the hood using a mild detergent. The hood's charcoal filters are not washable; they must be replaced every 12 months with normal use, according to the Broan website.
Regardless of size, color or review site, these Broan ductless under-cabinet are a hit with owners. As an example, the various color variations of the 30 inch version of this Broan range hood draw more than 800 reviews at Amazon.com, and a rating of 4.5-stars. Their relatively low cost might be part of the reason for the high satisfaction, but feedback indicates that these range hoods also look good and work well. Easy installation is another oft-cited plus.