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Range Hood Cleaning - How to Get Rid of Grease

Keeping your range hood clean is essential for kitchen safety and hygiene. Over time, grease, oil, and other cooking residues can build up on the range hood and pose a fire hazard. Regular cleaning helps remove this grease buildup and allows your range hood to work effectively at ventilating your kitchen.

In this comprehensive guide, we will cover everything you need to know about cleaning your range hood and eliminating grease.

Why Regular Range Hood Cleaning is Important

Here are some key reasons why regular cleaning of your range hood is crucial:

  • Prevents Kitchen Fires: Grease buildup in range hoods is highly flammable. Regular cleaning helps remove this fire hazard. According to NFPA 96 standards, commercial kitchen hoods should be cleaned every 3 months or more frequently, depending on use.
  • Improves Ventilation: When grease and residues accumulate on the fan blades and interior surfaces, it reduces airflow and ventilation efficiency. Proper cleaning improves air quality.
  • Extends Equipment Life: Over time, grease deposits can corrode and damage the range hood. Cleaning helps remove corrosive grease and prolongs the hood's lifespan.
  • Eliminates Odours: Grease traps odours and smells. A clean hood keeps kitchen odours from spreading throughout the house.
  • Complies with Codes: Regular hood cleaning is mandated by fire and health codes in most jurisdictions. Failing to clean poses risks and violates regulations.

Cleaning Frequency

The frequency of cleaning depends on how often you use the range hood.

  • Home kitchens: Every 2-3 months
  • Commercial kitchens: high-volume cooking: Every 1–3 months
  • Commercial kitchens: moderate usage: Every 6 months
  • Infrequent use: Annually

Do a visual inspection in between complete cleanings. If you notice excessive grease buildup, clean the hood immediately.

Supplies Needed

Gather these supplies before you start cleaning:

  • Grease-cutting dish soap or degreaser spray
  • Baking soda
  • Vinegar
  • Microfiber cloths
  • Soft scrub pads or brushes
  • Toothbrush for hard-to-reach areas
  • Protective gloves
  • Eye protection
  • Plastic sheets to protect nearby surfaces
  • A stable ladder (for ceiling-mounted range hoods)

Step-by-Step Cleaning Process

Follow these steps to thoroughly clean your range hood:

Step 1: Remove Filters

  • Switch off and unplug the range hood. Allow it to fully cool.
  • Remove the metal mesh filters by pulling or sliding them out.

Removing range hood filters

Step 2: Clean Filter

Soak filters in hot water mixed with dish soap. Use a soft brush to gently scrub away grease deposits.

Rinse thoroughly and allow it to dry before reinstalling. Replace filters that are too greasy or damaged.

Step 3: Protect Surfaces

Cover nearby appliances and surfaces with plastic sheets to protect them from cleaning spray and grease drips.

Step 4: Remove Loose Debris

Use a small brush or toothbrush to brush away any loose dirt or debris inside the range hood body. Clean fan blades, corners, and interior surfaces.

Step 5: Apply Degreaser

Spray interior surfaces with a degreasing agent like dish soap, baking soda solution, vinegar solution, or commercial degreasing spray. Avoid harsh, acidic cleaners.

Let the degreaser sit for 5–10 minutes.

Step 6: Scrub Away Grease

Use a soft brush or microfiber cloth to scrub the degreaser and dissolve sticky grease deposits. Pay extra attention to hidden corners and crevices where grease accumulates.

Step 7: Rinse

Wipe all surfaces clean with a microfiber cloth and hot water to remove grease and degreaser residue.

For ventless range hoods with a charcoal filter, carefully wipe to avoid getting the filter wet.

Step 8: Clean Exterior

Spray the exterior surfaces with degreaser and let them sit briefly. Use a microfiber cloth to wipe away grease. Pay special attention to the crevices and the underside of the hood.

Step 9: Reinstall Filters

Once fully dry, carefully reinstall clean filters by sliding them back into place.

Step 10: Test and Finish Up

  • Plug it in and switch on the range hood to ensure it is operating properly after cleaning.
  • Remove protective plastic sheets and clean up any secondary mess.
  • Wash all brushes and scrub pads to remove residual grease that can turn rancid.

And you're done! Following these steps to regularly clean your range hood will help maintain safety and keep your kitchen degrease-free.

Alternative Cleaning Solutions

If you don't have commercial cleaner on hand, you can make DIY degreasing solutions using items you likely have at home:

Baking Soda Solution

Mix 1 part baking soda with 3 parts warm water. Spray and let sit for 10 minutes before scrubbing and rinsing. Baking soda dissolves grease.

Vinegar Solution

Mix equal parts warm water and white vinegar. Spray the range hood and let it sit briefly before scrubbing away grime. Vinegar cuts through grease.

Dish Soap

Hot water mixed with grease-fighting dish soap like Dawn also works to dissolve sticky grease on range hoods.

Cleaning Tips

  • Clean the range hood and filters 1-2 times more frequently if you fry foods or cook greasy dishes often.
  • Ceiling-mounted range hoods can be tricky to reach. Use a sturdy ladder and work safely.
  • Range hood filters are dishwasher-safe for easy cleaning.
  • Set a reminder on your phone to clean your range hood every 2–3 months.
  • Keep an old toothbrush in your kitchen for scrubbing small grease deposits during mini-cleanings between deep cleans.

When to Call for Professional Cleaning

If DIY efforts don't remove stubborn grease stains or the range hood cleaning process seems overly difficult or hazardous, contact appliance repair experts for professional cleaning.

Many companies offer exhaust system cleaning using powerful hot water sprayers to scrub away extreme buildup. Professionals have commercial degreasers and tools to thoroughly clean excessively dirty vents and ducts.

Keeping Your Range Hood Clean

Here are some tips to keep your freshly cleaned range hood grease-free for longer:

  • Clean the splatters immediately after cooking.
  • Install splash guards behind burners.
  • Use pans that match the burner size to minimise mess.
  • Filter oil correctly after deep-frying instead of pouring it down drains.
  • Cover pans when cooking greasy dishes to reduce splattering.
  • Ensure proper ventilation when searing meats or stir-frying.
  • Run the hood fan on high when cooking odorous or smoke-producing foods.


Allowing grease buildup in your range hood is a safety hazard and reduces kitchen air quality. Follow this comprehensive cleaning guide to eliminate grime and keep your range hood working efficiently.

Regularly removing grease also improves ventilation, equipment longevity, and compliance with codes. Implement these cleaning tips and maintenance practices to keep your range hood sparkling clean for years to come.

Harry Virk

Harry Virk is the director of CleaningPro Auckland. He has years of experience in the cleaning industry and his company is expert at providing exceptional cleaning services in Auckland. He has a passion for helping people and making sure that their homes are clean, tidy, and ready for visitors.

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