I used to live in townhouse-style apartment with a ductless kitchen hood–you know, the kind that doesn’t vent to the outside but instead recirculates the air through a filter? It was misery. I would have that thing humming on High while boiling pasta, baking chicken in the oven or stir frying veggies in the Wok and in every cooking scenario I would be left with an apartment that smelled for days of whatever I had been cooking. I’d usually have to crack a kitchen window to let excess moisture out or they’d fog up within minutes. I lost my faith in ventless hoods because of those moments.

So naturally I was skeptical when the release for Vent-A-Hood’s new “truly effective” duct-free range hood came across my desk. Called the “Air Recovery System” line, the new series of hoods ranging from $1,949 to $2,744, features a four-stage technology that collects rising gases, separates grease, contains odors and traps the smoke for a satisfying duct-free hood experience. It does all this through an active canopy and centrifugal blower to capture and then extract grease; an “activated carbon bed” that boasts 50 times more exposure to the foul air than the traditional flat carbon mats found in most ductless hoods; and an accordion microfiber filter that deals with smoke. Mmmmm, I can practically smell the recirculated, freshened air right now.

I wish I had a one of these new Air Recovery Systems to test out. It’s really the only way to know if the thing works. Even without one on-hand I’m willing to bet that Vent-A-Hoods latest product would perform better than the sorry excuse for a hood that I was using back in the day. I’d have been better off cooking in a beanie propeller hat.

Do you have a ductless hood in your kitchen? Would you consider installing Vent-A-Hood’s new product?