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How to Clean an Electric Kettle (With Pictures)

how to clean electric kettle

Electric kettles are fast and efficient ways to heat water for your coffee, tea, and more. But they do need a little maintenance to run well! Descaling is a simple — but important — process, involving just a few straightforward steps.

We’re going to walk you through how to clean an electric kettle. In five easy steps, you’ll have a sparkling kettle, ready to help you brew a fresh cup of coffee!

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How to Clean Electric Kettles:

Ingredients
  • White vinegar
  • Water
Equipment
  • Bottle brush
  • Sponge or dishcloth

1. Pour in vinegar and water.

vinegar to descale electric kettle

Fill your kettle a quarter of the way with white vinegar. Then add an equal amount of water.


2. Bring to a boil and let sit.

electric kettle descale with vinegar

Turn your kettle on and let it come to a boil. Once it’s boiling, turn it off and let it sit for half an hour.


3. Clean the outside.

sponge cleaning electric kettle

Dip a sponge or cloth into the cooled vinegar and water mixture. Use this to wipe down the outside of your kettle.


4. Discard the mixture and scrub the inside.

clean electric kettle with bottle brush

Throw away your vinegar and water. Then scrub out the inside of your kettle using your bottle brush.


5. Boil water.

rinse electric kettle with water

Refill the kettle with water and let it come to a boil. Then discard the water. You may want to repeat this step to make sure there isn’t any vinegar left in the kettle. You don’t want your next cup of coffee to taste like a cleaning product!

That’s it! Your electric kettle is now cleaned, descaled, and ready to boil your next batch of water. Enjoy your clean kettle!

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Frequently Asked Questions

Do you have questions about how to clean an electric kettle? We have answers! Scroll down to learn more:

clean electric kettle

How often do you need to clean electric kettles?

If you notice mineral buildup inside the kettle, it’s time to descale! Depending on how hard your water is, you may need to do this every month or two. Luckily, it’s a fairly quick and very inexpensive process.

What does descale mean?

Descaling is the process of removing mineral buildup from your kettle or coffee machine. There are minerals like calcium and magnesium dissolved in tap water that can be left behind when water evaporates. These minerals coat the sides of your kettle and can interfere with the heating element. White vinegar dissolves those minerals, allowing you to thoroughly clean your kettle!

Can you descale using vinegar?

Absolutely! Descale an electric kettle using equal parts water and white vinegar.

Can you use something other than vinegar?

Yes! You can buy descaling solution online or in the grocery store or substitute citric acid (the acid found in lemons and limes).

How do you keep electric kettles clean?

Cleaning an electric kettle is easy, but that doesn’t mean you want to do it all the time. The easiest way to keep your kettle clean is to avoid leaving water in it. When you’re done making coffee or tea, pour any extra boiled water into the sink. This will minimize the mineral buildup — so you won’t have to clean your kettle as often!

Kate MacDonnell

Kate is a lifelong coffee enthusiast and homebrewer who enjoys writing for coffee websites and sampling every kind of coffee known to man. She’s tried unusual coffees from all over the world and owns an unhealthy amount of coffee gear.

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