Do Kitchen Extractor Fans Use A Lot Of Electricity

Do Kitchen Extractor Fans Use A Lot Of Electricity?

Kitchen extractor fans are an essential component of any well-designed kitchen. They help to remove smoke, odors, and excess moisture from the air, ensuring a clean and comfortable cooking environment. However, many homeowners are concerned about the energy consumption of these fans and whether they contribute significantly to their electricity bills. In this article, we will explore the energy usage of kitchen extractor fans and provide valuable insights into their efficiency.

Understanding Kitchen Extractor Fans

Kitchen extractor fans, also known as range hoods or exhaust hoods, are ventilation devices installed above stovetops or cooktops. They consist of a canopy or hood that captures and removes airborne contaminants generated during cooking. These contaminants include smoke, grease particles, steam, and odors.

Extractor fans typically consist of a fan or blower, a filter system, and a duct that expels the extracted air outside the kitchen or recirculates it after filtration. The fan or blower is responsible for drawing in the air and pushing it through the filter system, which traps grease and other particles. The filtered air is then either expelled outside or recirculated back into the kitchen.

Energy Consumption of Kitchen Extractor Fans

When it comes to energy consumption, kitchen extractor fans vary depending on their design, size, and usage. The power consumption of an extractor fan is primarily determined by the wattage of the fan motor and the duration of its operation.

On average, a standard kitchen extractor fan consumes between 30 and 200 watts of electricity. However, it’s important to note that this is the maximum power consumption when the fan is operating at its highest speed. In reality, most kitchen extractor fans have multiple speed settings, allowing users to adjust the fan’s power according to their needs.

When operating at lower speeds, the power consumption of an extractor fan decreases significantly. For example, a fan running at its lowest speed may consume only 10-20 watts of electricity. Therefore, the actual energy usage of a kitchen extractor fan depends on the speed at which it is set and the duration of its operation.

Factors Affecting Energy Efficiency

Several factors can affect the energy efficiency of kitchen extractor fans:

  • Fan Speed: As mentioned earlier, running the fan at lower speeds reduces energy consumption. It is advisable to use the lowest speed necessary to achieve the desired ventilation.
  • Usage Patterns: The frequency and duration of using the extractor fan impact energy consumption. Turning off the fan when it is not needed can help save electricity.
  • Efficiency of Filters: Clogged or dirty filters can restrict airflow, forcing the fan to work harder and consume more energy. Regularly cleaning or replacing filters is essential for maintaining energy efficiency.
  • Duct Length and Design: The length and design of the duct system can affect the fan’s efficiency. Shorter and straighter ducts allow for better airflow, reducing the workload on the fan.
  • Fan Motor Efficiency: High-quality extractor fans often come with energy-efficient motors that consume less electricity while providing adequate ventilation.

Case Study: Energy Savings with an Efficient Extractor Fan

A study conducted by a leading manufacturer of kitchen extractor fans found that upgrading to an energy-efficient model can result in significant energy savings. The study compared the energy consumption of a standard extractor fan with a high-efficiency model over a year.

The results showed that the standard extractor fan consumed an average of 150 watts per hour of operation, while the energy-efficient model consumed only 80 watts per hour. Considering an average usage of 2 hours per day, the standard fan consumed 109.5 kWh per year, whereas the energy-efficient fan consumed only 58.4 kWh per year. This translates to an annual energy saving of 51.1 kWh, which can make a noticeable difference in electricity bills.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

1. Do kitchen extractor fans need to be on all the time?

It is not necessary to keep the kitchen extractor fan on all the time. It should be used when cooking or when there is a need to remove smoke, odors, or excess moisture from the air. Turning off the fan when it is not needed can help save energy.

2. Can a kitchen extractor fan be used to cool down a kitchen?

Kitchen extractor fans are primarily designed for ventilation purposes and are not intended to cool down a kitchen. They are more effective at removing heat, smoke, and odors rather than reducing the overall temperature of the room.

3. How often should I clean the filters of my kitchen extractor fan?

The frequency of cleaning the filters depends on the usage and cooking habits. As a general guideline, it is recommended to clean or replace the filters every 3 to 6 months. However, if you cook frequently or use greasy cooking methods, more frequent cleaning may be necessary.

4. Can I use a kitchen extractor fan without an external duct?

Yes, some kitchen extractor fans are designed for recirculation, meaning they filter the air and release it back into the kitchen. These fans do not require an external duct but may require regular filter maintenance to ensure their effectiveness.

5. Are there any energy-saving features to look for in a kitchen extractor fan?

Yes, energy-saving features to consider include variable speed settings, timer functions, and energy-efficient motors. These features allow you to adjust the fan’s power, set automatic shut-off times, and reduce overall energy consumption.

Yes, kitchen extractor fans are effective in removing excess moisture and reducing condensation caused by cooking. Proper ventilation helps to maintain a drier environment, preventing the growth of mold and mildew.


Kitchen extractor fans are essential for maintaining a clean and comfortable cooking environment. While they do consume electricity, their energy usage can be managed effectively by considering factors such as fan speed, usage patterns, filter efficiency, duct design, and motor efficiency. Upgrading to energy-efficient models can result in significant energy savings over time. By understanding the energy consumption of kitchen extractor fans and implementing energy-saving practices, homeowners can enjoy the benefits of a well-ventilated kitchen without worrying about excessive electricity usage.