As our way of living continues to evolve, kitchen design is changing. Instead of the traditional kitchen with a prominent rangehood over the oven or hobs, we’ve seen a marked shift in design philosophy.

Now, cooking isn’t relegated only to a benchtop against the wall. Islands are a much more common occurrence in kitchens than before, often creating a more social element to the space. But as these are used more frequently, the location of the cooktop has moved too, with many kitchen designs incorporating cooking areas within islands.

And it is the ability to have a discreet appliance in place of the traditional range hood that pulls air down and out of the space rather than up, that has allowed this to happen.

Downdraft extractors have been around for some time, but until recently the technology hasn’t been up to scratch and for many who had any experience with downdraft extractors, the experience was fraught with noise, and an appliance that didn’t work as well as an overhead rangehood.

With developments in technology these issues have been mitigated and downdraft extractors now perform as well or better than traditional rangehoods. They’re also incredibly discreet, designed to blend in with the cooktop, and they allow for a remote motor, which incorporates a silencer so noise is no longer an issue. The remote motor can also be placed anywhere, even in a different room if desired, which allows for space constraints.

“We’re also seeing downdraft extractors becoming more popular as we use more glass in our designs. It means you can retain views if the cooking area is placed in front of glazing because you no longer need an overhead extractor,” IKON’s Jarna McLaughlin says.

“And as kitchen design has changed, there has been a clear shift away from using the rangehood as a centrepiece in the kitchen. People are now trying to hide them, which is why the downdraft extractors are so popular.”

Downdraft extractors work slightly differently to the typical range hood too, working to extract air at the source, rather than from above it. “This means that it has to work less than an overhead range hood does, which reduces the cost of running it,” Jarna says.

Downdraft extractors work slightly differently to the typical range hood too, working to extract air at the source, rather than from above it. “This means that it has to work less than an overhead range hood does, which reduces the cost of running it,” Jarna says.

IKON Commercial is a specialist kitchen wholesaler that supplies products throughout New Zealand. Their range of downdraft extractors is made in Europe, and offers two options, either a stainless steel finish or a black glass finish, designed to blend in with either gas hobs or induction ovens.

Visit IKON Commercial on ArchiPro here to peruse the latest in kitchen technology.