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Extractor Fan Cleaning – The Ultimate Guide

A kitchen extractor fan is designed to draw smoke, steam, unpleasant smells and grease away from the kitchen when cooking. Traditionally cooker hoods and extractor fans are placed above the cooker to keep the kitchen smoke and odour free when using the hob or stove.

Cooker hood with someone pressing a button

Just like your oven, regular cleaning of your extractor fan is important to prevent clogging, which can be a fire hazard (more on this later). So, when it comes to cleaning your kitchen extractor fan, you may decide to roll up your sleeves and complete the clean yourself, or you might consider a professional cleaning service. If you decide to tackle the cooker hood clean yourself, here is our ultimate guide on how to clean an extractor fan.

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What do I need to clean my Extractor Fan?

Due to their location in the kitchen, extractor fans become coated in sticky grease overtime. However, you don’t need to use toxic chemicals to remove this grease. You can opt for household products and natural cleaning methods.

To clean an extractor fan, you will need:

  • Bicarbonate of soda
  • Boiling or hot water
  • Household degreaser (dishwashing liquid)
  • Soft cloths (microfibre or similar)
  • Baby oil for stainless steel (optional)
  • Household glass cleaner or white vinegar

How to clean Extractor Fan Filters

The filters are an essential part of any extractor fan. Typically the cooker hood will have an aluminium mesh filter, however, some extractors have paper filters. Mesh filters can be removed and cleaned in hot soapy water, but paper filters must be replaced when they become saturated with grease.

Extractor fan cooker hood filters

                                                                             Before                                                                                    After

Ideally, you should clean aluminium mesh fan filters every 3 months to prevent a grease build-up and keep the cooker hood working efficiently. Paper filters can last between 3 months and a year, depending on the amount of food cooked on the stove.

All Ovenclean specialists carry stock of replacement lamps, universal seals and a range of extraction filters. So if your filters are past their best, contact Ovenclean for a deep clean and replacement.

Find out more on how to clean extractor fan filters here.

How to Clean Extractor Hood Surface

Just like kitchen cupboards, over time the outer surface of an extractor fan becomes coated in a greasy residue. The build-up of grime is caused by the location of the fan, but can be easily removed at home or by a professional.

Before you begin cleaning, ensure the stove and extractor fan are turned off and cold.

Stainless Steel Cooker Hood

  1. Create a natural solution of bicarbonate of soda and boiling water.
  2. Then use a soft sponge to gently scrub the hood with the cleaning solution.
  3. Rinse your sponge with warm water and repeat until the majority of the grease is removed.
  4. Then add a little dishwashing soap to a soft cloth to remove any remaining grease.
  5. Rinse the cloth and repeat as necessary.
  6. Finally, dry the cooker hood with a clean dry cloth.

Top Tip: Once the exterior is clean, apply a small amount of baby oil with a microfibre cloth. The oil will give a smooth shiny finish and help to prevent fingerprints.

Glass Cooker Hood

  1. If possible, remove the glass from the cooker hood, check the manufacture manual to see if this is possible.
  2. Place the glass on a flat surface with an old towel underneath ready for cleaning.
  3. If the glass cannot be removed, cover the stove with a cloth to avoid stove stains.
  4. Similar to stainless steel cleaning method, create a solution of bicarbonate soda and hot water.
  5. Gently scrub the hood in a linear motion with a soft cloth until all the grease is removed.
  6. Create a shiny finish to the glass with a household glass cleaner or white vinegar.
  7. Replace the glass if necessary.

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How to clean the light-bulb casing on an extractor fan

Most kitchen extractors and cooker hoods have a light to brighten the cooking area. This light and its casing are likely to get very dirty, due to their location above the stove. You can clean the bulb casing by removing the cover and leaving it to soak in warm soapy water for 30 minutes. Then remove the sticky grease by scrubbing with a soft sponge.

How often should I clean my Extractor Fan?

To keep your extractor fan in good working order, we recommend cleaning it every 6 months or hiring a professional cleaner twice a year.

Not only will a regular clean keep your fan working efficiently, it can also reduce the risk of a fire and improve general kitchen hygiene.

Fire Safety

One of the most important reasons to regularly clean your extractor fan is to reduce the risk of fire. It’s very common for fires to start in kitchens simply because the cooker hood fan is blocked with grease and grime. The fan then overheats due to a lack of airflow and sets on fire.

Kitchen Hygiene

Extractor fans are designed to suck away fumes, odours and grease, but a dirty uncared-for extractor can sometimes do the opposite, leaking the grime back out onto the stove below.

Professional Extractor Fan Cleaning

If your extractor fan needs a professional touch, then Ovenclean can restore your extractor fan to its former glory. All Ovenclean specialists have been fully trained to ensure all extractor fan and hood cleaning can be carried out as safely and efficiently as possible. Ovenclean specialists use a no-added caustic cleaning system, meaning your kitchen is safe, hygienic and free from harmful fumes. Plus, you can use your extractor fan immediately after a professional clean.

No matter how much grease your cooker hood has built up over recent use, our cleaning experts are on hand to help out. You can contact your local Ovenclean expert for a no obligation free quote. Either call 0800 840 7127 or click here to request a quote online today.

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