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Old 02-12-2013, 06:16 PM   #1
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36" Gas Cooktop Quandry


Right now we have a Modern Maid downdraft cooktop that was initially installed in 1987. The prognosis is terminal.

We've been looking at standard cooktops with a hood as an alternate to the downdraft. Not many 36" downdraft cooktops out there. And the hoods seem all the rage.

Right now all the appliances except the cooktop are Kitchen Aid. So we've been looking there first. Reviews seem good. Prices run from $1000 to $1300. A hood is about $900. And I'd have to open up some drywall to run the duct for the hood, rework the soffit and move some recessed cans that are in the way. Lots of work.

Jenn-Air makes a 36" downdraft cooktop that's $2000. If we HAD to have the hood, I could make a nice wooden one that would match the cabinets. I have some figured sapele that is gorgeous. It would really stand out as a showpiece over the cooktop and blend in nicely with the new mahogany/sapele doors & drawers.


Figured sapele.


QS sapele panel with mahogany rail& stile (just placed on planed sapele)

I'm leaning towards the Jenn-Air but I only get one vote and it's not always the vote that counts.

So, we're looking at a mid priced cooktop and hood (and lots of remodeling work), or a better quality downdraft cooktop and no hood or the downdraft with a false hood that will house only lights.

Are there any other options anyone here can suggest?

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Old 02-12-2013, 06:52 PM   #2
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36" Gas Cooktop Quandry


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So, we're looking at a mid priced cooktop and hood...
You say that like this is a bad thing.

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Old 02-12-2013, 08:02 PM   #3
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36" Gas Cooktop Quandry


Have you looked at the pop up down draft vents that work with a standard cook top?

They work well and ,I think, look good---some modification ot the counter top might be needed---
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Old 02-13-2013, 07:06 AM   #4
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36" Gas Cooktop Quandry


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You say that like this is a bad thing.
Not at all. The existing cooktop was purchased in place of a Jenn-Air because it was so much cheaper and we've had it for 26 years now.

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Have you looked at the pop up down draft vents that work with a standard cook top?

They work well and ,I think, look good---some modification ot the counter top might be needed---
Yes, I considered those initially but the cost scared me off. I'll have to look again and see if I'm remembering right. At the time we had no thoughts of installing a hood.

As for the install, I'm going to be building a new cabinet for the cooktop so I could take into consideration the pop-up, as long as it and the cooktop can fit in a 24" depth cabinet. That might be a problem.
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Old 02-13-2013, 07:18 AM   #5
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36" Gas Cooktop Quandry


I've installed two or three of those into 24 inch cabinets---so I know it can be done---As to cost?? I just installed them and never knew the cost-----The duct work can be frustrating---
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Old 02-13-2013, 10:45 AM   #6
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36" Gas Cooktop Quandry


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I've installed two or three of those into 24 inch cabinets---so I know it can be done---As to cost?? I just installed them and never knew the cost-----The duct work can be frustrating---
Yeah, I just looked at one, a Kitchen Aid. It was a bit under $1,000, about $180 more than the hood we were considering. But the duct work! And it looked like it would take up a lot of under cabinet space. It looks great from the top but it's like the iceberg, 90% underwater.

I had another option thrown at me last night, no hood, no cabinet above, just two teardrop fixtures hanging above the Jenn-Air downdraft. I'd remove the cans and install 1900 boxes with drywall rings. But can we find the "right" fixtures? Looking into my crystal ball I see endless searches on the horizon.

What I don't know about the Jenn-Air is how it will synch with the existing duct. From the installation diagram, it looks close but it's 6" duct and close only counts in hand grenades and dancing.
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Old 02-13-2013, 06:33 PM   #7
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36" Gas Cooktop Quandry


The squirrel cage can be loosened and turned---at least the usually can---so some adjustment of the outlet can be done---
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Old 02-14-2013, 04:14 PM   #8
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36" Gas Cooktop Quandry


After further review...

The Jenn-Air has been eliminated. Too many complaints about the downdraft. Dacor entered the scene and after looking for what seemed like a second job we settled on a cooktop with the popup. It was just a few $$ more than the Jenn-Air.

Then we found out that didn't include the blower. By then the SO was sold on Dacor so we're forging ahead and paying the extra $$$, around $2,650.00, delivered.



This is the blower:

So it looks like I'll be needing an adapter that goes from the blower to 6" round duct. Right now that 6" duct comes up at the front of the cabinet and will most likely be to left of center or close to center to the new blower. I'm just wondering if this can be rotated 90 degrees so the opening is facing down. I can't find any pictures of what this looks like installed under a cabinet. I'm also wondering if Dacor makes the transitional piece or if it has to be custom made.

I think you're right Mike, this is going to a challenge. Good thing I'm retired.
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Old 02-14-2013, 04:46 PM   #9
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36" Gas Cooktop Quandry


I suggest you call the technical help line----most of those companies have one----best to ask the maker----I would be surprised if the cover can not be turned----
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Old 02-14-2013, 08:55 PM   #10
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36" Gas Cooktop Quandry


Considering that heat and steam rises, I never could see the performance advantage of the down draft types.

Look on the bright side...if you get a good vent hood...you also get some good light.

We have the GE Monogram vent hood that is basically a flat panel where the front pulls out....much quieter than some of the other models.
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Old 02-15-2013, 06:39 AM   #11
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36" Gas Cooktop Quandry


I downloaded the PDFs on it and yes, it can be rotated. But I also found out they have an inline blower that I can install in the basement. And it's $100 cheaper.

Their drawings show a 3-1/2x10 duct coming out of the bottom of the popup unit, then a 90 elbow to a 3-1/2x10 to 8" round duct and into the blower housing.

It's a 600 CFM blower that requires 8" pipe. And we have 6" pipe. So this will be a completely new install, nothing can be reused. I hear the cash register ring again.

The venting will cost almost twice what the cooktop costs. I remember working on some condo complexes in the 70's and installing $30.00 range hoods, and these were considered nice condos. Of course that was before the "Professional Appliance" craze.

Maybe I should just sit on my porch in my rocking chair and yell at the kids in the neighborhood.

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