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The Morphy Richards Ecolectric Kettle was an Easter present to myself and my housemates from one of said housemates. Our previous cookworks kettle had started leaking in under 6 months from purchase and needed to be replaced, so she decided to go with something a bit more upmarket (it cost approx. £35). We all try to do our bit for the environment, and use the kettle an awful lot, so the ecolectric was the perfect choice. We had the kettle for a year and a half, which in our household, where copious amounts of hot drinks are drunk, is a pretty good innings. Here's some information and opinions:
Specifications: The kettle has a 1.7 litre capacity (which seems standard for most kettles) and automatic switch off. I am unsure if the kettle has boil dry protection or similar safety features, as it is not stated in any product description I have read, so I would have to guess that it doesn't, which seems unusual and a bit of a glaring omission.
Design: A cordless black plastic jug kettle with large window to see the water level, and silver plastic base and sides to the handle. Quite chunky - definitely not the sleekest kettle, but I loved the fact that it was black as opposed to white. The scale in the water window is measured in cups - which was really handy when filling, as you can do it to exactly the right amount (thus producing less wastage and making the kettle more environmentally friendly). The water window also lights up blue, which makes reading the scale very easy.
The Big Selling Point: The Morphy Richards Ecolectric Kettle can be heated to two temperatures: boiling and eco (85 degrees). The power switch simply slides horizontally between the two options and then downwards to start heating. A red light above the power switch is illuminated when "boil" is selected and a green light when "eco" is selected. Eco is great for making coffee, fruit/herbal teas, and filling up washing up bowls when your boiler stops working and you have no hot water! To make "traditional" tea, the boil option must be selected, otherwise the tea won't infuse properly. Thus if you only drink tea, there would be no point in buying this kettle, as you would never use the eco function. If you do drink other hot drinks though, then by using the eco switch you can save up to 24% energy per heating.
Other Features: The kettle has a concealed element, which not only makes the inside of the kettle look nice, but helps prevent limescale build up, which in my book is excellent! The limescale filter is also washable which makes keeping the kettle clean easier. The base of the kettle has non slip feet, and the power cord can be stored underneath it, making things a bit tidier. The kettle can be filled through the spout or by opening the lid (you push a switch on the top of the handle to spring the lid open - this is great as it means you can open and fill the kettle one handed). Filling through the spout can be tricky however, as it is quite narrow.
Heating: The Ecolectric, I am pleased to say boils pretty quickly and not too loudly either. It always performed well when using it.
Unfortunately I'm not sure why our kettle broke. One day during boiling, it simply stopped working (I have the feeling we might have simply worn it out). Despite this I really like this kettle and believe it to be a good buy. Because of the wide variety of drinks drunk in our household, the eco function was used a lot. It felt good to have something "environmentally friendly" and of course would have saved us a little bit of money on electricity too. Although the kettle is relatively expensive I would say it's worth it if you wish to lower your impact on the environment. The Morphy Richards Ecolectric kettle is also well featured although, lack of information on which safety features it includes is frustrating. However, up until it broke, we never had any problems with it, so I will still award it five stars.
Short name: Morphy Richards 43675