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Range Hood Vs Microwave – What to Set Over The Range?

Which one to favor when the question is Range hood vs microwave?

When ventilation is the key task, a range hood will win over microwave over your stove. As a member of a kitchen remodeling agency, I can cite you several points that go in favor of the range hood.

Whereas the over-the-range microwave draws air inside the kitchen to re-circulate the same across the room, the kitchen range hood drives stale or choking the air out and keeps other pesky particles out.

Moreover, a well ducted and quality range hood adds to the real estate value of your home being a sleek and attractive appliance.

Therefore, if you have to prefer one between a range hood and microwave vent; my recommendation will go for a range hood.

To get an in-depth overview, go on with this precise post fully around the topic.

Though both the appliances under discussion are identical in terms of use still there are several differences in terms of features and performance. 

Let's have a brief on them for better understanding.

Range Hood

A range hood is an enclosure type appliance resting/hung over the range very often dubbed as exhaust hood or vent hood. 

It mainly runs a fan emitting a gust of air to refresh the stinky and stale indoor air by sucking the pollutants or pesky airborne particles.

It deals with every by-product of cooking.

Range Hood Overview


Commonly known as OTR, a microwave is a kitchen appliance mounted over the cooktop or cooking range. 

It mainly ventilates air and re-circulates that indoor but doesn't deal with particles and pollutants.

A Microwave uses as the alternative of the range hood. I

Microwave Overview

Range Hood Vs Microwave Comparison Before Making final decision

Let's see step by step crucial considerations before making buying decision you are going to take.


Performance refers to the actual problem-solving ability. So far kitchen appliances like the said ones are concerned, you go for those to refresh the stale air and remove the pollutants and tiny particles that may lead the kitchen unhygienic.

In this connection, a range hood does far better than an OTR or microwave. Producing a speedy airflow, it deals with the stinky odor, choking smokes, and pesky particles.


Chances is very slim that a range hood causes any hazard as it fans the kitchen room along with lightening it. Moreover, a quality range hood rests at a convenient height where you can reach with ease to control the operation. 

On the contrary, the over-the-range microwave sitting 5 feet above the range causes several potential hazards and inconveniences. 

It is difficult for a shorter individual to handle it whereas the taller users will frequently collide with their head. The collision may leave the door open to invite unwarranted situations.

Size of the Room

The size of the kitchen plays a very important role as it becomes difficult for a microwave to deal with a large cooking room where cooking happens frequently and in plenty.

In that case, the recirculation of the indoor air will not merely do what a microwave primarily does. The OTR cannot handle the large room and high-temperature setting resulting in cooking pollutants.

Therefore, if you have a larger kitchen room and you need to cook frequently in the high setting; a range hood is the best ventilation alternative.

Spills and Burns

Higher microwave position results in frequent burns and easy spills and it is not very unlikely to fall hot foods on you. And once got dirty, it is very difficult to clean an OTR resting at a higher location than a range hood.

If you go a bit careless and try to reach the microwave while the stove is burning, it may cause a grave consequence.

Style and Look

Though the OTR manufacturers nowadays focus on style and look of the same, the updated range hoods are a feast compared with the former.

Modern range hood units are so sophisticated in design and style that they add to the overall value of the home. 

To be precise, microwaves lose the style and look contest. Placed over the range, microwaves do not look that great as the range hoods do.

What Type of Range Hood is an Ideal Solution?

Going by all the reasoning stated above, you may grow the impression that a range hood is all good and the microwave is just the opposite. Let it be loud and clear that merely an appliance can never be an ultimate solution.

Other factors include well ducting and the presence of windows. But if you are caught between a ductless range hood and an over-the-range OTR for your kitchen ventilation, I will vote for the ductless vent hood for several reasons.

On top of the above considerations, a ductless vent hood is specially constructed and designed to filter the kitchen air and remove pollutants.

Moreover, the ductless range hoods offer an easy installation option and they don't require to be mounted near an outdoor duct. On the flip side, the ductless vent hood comes with a hassle to change the charcoal filter regularly.

A ductless vent hood will prove to be the best ventilation offer if the kitchen is closer to a duct; the ductless exhaust hood will be the best option here. For ductless range hood reviews read this article:

Expert Opinions on Microwave Vent vs Range hood

If you run short of pocket depth and kitchen space, the over-the-range microwave may prove a convenient option to afford. But the kitchen range hood will be the better alternative considering the long term saving.

Moreover, range hoods are available at wide varieties of price and configuration to suit both your budget and space. Not to escape, you can add elegance and trendy style at not-so-high a budget compared with that of an OTR. And a high-performance range hood for your kitchen would serve and save the most in the long run.

Thanks to the halogen lights come with any modern range hood to illuminate the whole kitchen that very often can well replace the regular electric kitchen lightbulb to cut your utility bill significantly down.


I think it is crystal clear by now which one to go for when you are posed with the dilemma of range hood vs microwave. Range hood instead of microwave is the preferred option despite microwave too has several upsides.

The difference is slim in terms of function but judging by the performance, a range hood will win the contest between the two.

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