Friday, February 17, 2012

Fun With Ducting

Raining right now as I write this. Upper 40's. Today the Bend Winterfest opens with an ice carving contest, snowboarding exhibitions, live bands, beer and wine and foods and other signs of an advanced civilization. But without snow the events will not have great conditions.

Chicken Adobo tonight; something easy and tasty-sounding from Cook's Illustrated.

The oven hood -- part of a combination over-stove microwave oven/oven hood appliance -- is a piece of crap: it doesn't suck air worth a damn.

Back in December, for our traditional winter party for KPOV volunteers, I had to sear the outside of a turkey in a very hot (500F) oven. The kitchen filled with smoke, the rest of the house filled with smoke . . . and the closed garage filled with smoke, too!

Very weird.

I asked handyman extraordinaire Mike Accardo to come out to see if we could figure out this mess.

First, we took pulled the microwave/hood down and apart to see if the fan had been installed incorrectly, but it wasn't. It's a sturdy-looking assembly with a dual squirrel-cage blower and a hefty motor. The filters were plenty clean, so they weren't blocking anything.

We then turned our attention to the duct that leads from the hood to the rooftop vent. Maybe it was plugged with a bird's nest or a sheep or something? Mike found that the duct just emptied into the attic, didn't connect to the roof vent at all. So the attic would fill with smoke which then leaked into the garage.

But the duct was clear, no blockage. The blower in the hood makes a lot of noise but it barely moves air. It's just a crap design.

So anyway, for the sake of completeness, Mike came out today to replace the vent on the roof with one with a fitting on the bottom that accepts a duct from inside the attic, and connected the hood's duct to it. No sense building up a few year's worth of condensed cooking grease up there.

The hood is still a piece of crap, but at least the little smoke it sucks from the stovetop will go outside, as it is meant to. That's progress of a sort, I guess.

Maybe this year Mrs Elliott and I can buy a new over-stove microwave with a proper oven hood exhaust fan, but the microwave part works fine so it seems extravagant.

Oh wait -- now the sun is out. The weather here sure is interesting. We can have snow in summer, sun and awakening daffodils in winter. I like it.

But I doubt the folks at the Winterfest are very appreciative.


  1. "But without snow the events will not have great conditions."

    As I recall, every year that our WinterFestivus has been held they've had to truck in snow from the mountains. Rather pathetic, actually.

    Too damn many "fests" in this town anyway. "Feh," says I!

  2. "Feh, lives you, Miller," says I!


------------ Facebook update page widget added 3/2012 --------------
------------ ends facebook update page widget -------------