Due to the mineral deposits in tap water, your electric kettle will naturally build up a chalky white substance called ‘limescale’ or ‘calcium buildup’ over time. If you live in a hard water area, this can happen more frequently.
Limescale may leave your kettle with an unwelcoming odor and affect its efficiency of heat distribution. Although good water filtration can help, regular cleaning of your kettle is still recommended.
You will need
- A soft cloth
- Purified water
- 1 cup vinegar / 1 tbsp lemon juice
- Non-abrasive sponge
Here's how to descale / remove the limescale and other mineral build-up inside your electric kettle:
- Unplug the kettle base from the outlet.
- Empty the kettle.
- Let the kettle cool down to room temperature.
- Add the vinegar or lemon juice to 2 cups water.
- Boil the mixture and let sit for 2 hours (keep the removable mesh filter and tea infuser attached if available).
- Discard the solution and gently scrub the interior with a non-abrasive sponge.
- Remove the mesh filter and tea infuser.
- Scrub them with the sponge.
- Rinse thoroughly with clean water (repeat if necessary).
- Wipe the interior of the kettle with a soft, damp cloth.
- Wipe the exterior of the kettle with the damp cloth.
- Wipe the kettle base with the damp cloth.
- Let the kettle, mesh filter, and tea infuser air dry prior to the next use.
- When it comes to ease of cleaning, material-wise, a glass kettle may be the best, then comes ceramic, stainless steel, and plastic is last.
- To make cleaning easier for yourself, you should choose an electric kettle with a large opening (< 3 inches) and a removable mesh filter instead of fixed.
- Clean the kettle once a week if used frequently.
- Avoid harsh or abrasive cleaning agents. These will discolor your kettle.
- Do not clean the kettle in the dishwasher or immerse it in water.
- Don’t brew tea or coffee directly in the kettle unless the manufacturer says so. Cleaning and descaling won’t get rid of the tea or coffee stains.
- Consider using distilled water (no minerals) for your tea and when cleaning the kettle.
- To prevent a greasy kettle, keep it away from the stovetop while cooking.
- If you have a stainless steel kettle, you can put a small drop of olive oil on the cloth and rub the exterior of the kettle for a streak-free shine.
About your Tip
Alan Nguyen is a writer and product reviewer at HealthyKitchen101. His major in English language teaching taught him to present concise information. In addition to his cooking hobby, he values the practical aspects of household appliances.