Range Hood Information

The GMC range hood is one of those parts of the coach that just annoy me. The design itself is fine, but the thing is just too noisy. There are a number of ways to quiet the roar, but in my case, the cabinet has to be replaced due a previous owner's over exuberance in adding cup hooks - and a little manhandling of the bunk side wall. In short, the locker carcass is hopelessly damaged. The back, side and vertical structural mount of my locker need replacing. But that also means that more than half of the cabinet needs to be replaced.

Inside the locker was an interesting construction. The vent from the back of the hood to the outside vent had a poor fit. More than half of the exhaust air came right back in the locker.

Down came the locker. And here's the ugly hole left in the wall. And for those who can deal with misfits and water leaks, here's a close up of the vent area. The sight inside the range hood wasn't pretty. I planned to refurbish the hood, so here's how I started:

A bottom view of the range hood shows the key mounting parts. First you need to remove the two nuts that are attached to the switches. They are aluminum and come off counter-clockwise. Except mine stuck. The aluminum had corroded so badly that the nut would not back off. So, I used slip-joint pliers to twist the nuts until the switch gave way. (I need to replace those switches anyway!)

Once the filter and light diffuser assembly is off the hood, you can see the two side lights and the center-mounted vent fan. Looking at the inside of the light diffuser assembly you can see that the gaskets are shot. But then, that goes along with the rust inside the hood.

Now you can see the noise culprit. The fan mounts directly to the bracket, which in turn is attached by a sheet metal nut. The vibration from the fan motor couples to the all-steel sounding board. No steel drums or guitars here - just lots of rotational vibration. That's NOISE to the rest of us. If you want to quiet the OEM range hood fan, add two isolation pads, one on each side of the bracket to isolate it from the hood case. Isolation pads can be made from O-rings, closed cell foam, or a material like Sorbathane.

The side lights are great and have little or no rust in their compartments. The other side light still has the switch that I broke attached.

 

Summary

The range hood can be refurbished in many cases. In mine, the rust at the vent area was too great, so I decided to replace the whole unit. My new range hood is a different size, but the new fan is much quieter. If you decide to take on a range hood refurb project, plan on some serious prep time. You'll likely require a bit of sand/media blasting and a lot of patience doing the final painting.