Product Type: Russell Hobbs kettles
Newest Review: ... base it is very easy to use. The kettle has a lid open button which should be useful when filling but to be honest I usually forget abou... more
This lovely kettle left a bad taste in my mouth
Russell Hobbs 14590
Member Name: markos9
Russell Hobbs 14590
Advantages: Very stylish. Boils water quickly due to high power.
Disadvantages: Chemical taste takes a lot of washing to get rid of
Last week, my girlfriend announced that we needed a new kettle. Perplexed, I asked why as our current kettle worked perfectly well. The reply was, "we've had it for over three years, and it's time for a change". Jokingly, I replied "well, we've been together for over three years and..."; the door slammed shut as she embarked on her retail therapy session. Oops!
Three hours later we were the proud(?) owners of the Russell Hobbs 14590 kettle. Always one to look on the bright side, I realised that this was something new to review!
First impressions were very favourable. The kettle is sleek, black, and very stylish. It has obviously been designed to be attractive as well as functional. The short mains lead attaches to the base which enables the cordless kettle to fit on easily in any direction. With the short lead and easy fitting to the base, the chance of knocking the kettle over by catching the lead is minimised.
The kettle takes up to 1.7 litres of water and there are fill level indicators in a sweeping strip of translucent plastic up the side. The power level of this device is quite high at 3KW; this means that the water should boil quickly.
Discarding the manual (I'm a man, it's a kettle, how hard can it be?), I connected it to the mains, filled the kettle to maximum and waited. According to the saying, 'a watched kettle never boils'. That's rubbish. I watched this kettle during its first use and it boiled quite quickly! The translucent plastic glows blue when the power's on which looks quite attractive. Within a couple of minutes (the 3KW power really works), the water was boiling and I was ready for my first cup of delicious tea from our new toy.
I made a cuppa, let it cool for a minute and took a sip. It was vile! There was a phenol/TCP taste that completely overpowered the taste of the tea. Sheepishly, I retrieved the manual to find instructions to fill the kettle to maximum, boil, and discard three times before use to remove any manufacturing dust etc. Oops again!
Following the instructions did remove the chemical taste, but not completely. After five boils and discards, the phenol-like taste was still there. Clearly, the manufacturer's recommendations for cleaning are inadequate. The translucent plastic parts of the device will contain plasticizers, stabilisers, and colourings, all of which could be dissolved by the boiling water (hot water is a very powerful solvent).
I realised that to remove the chemical taste completely, I'd need to boil the kettle several more times. Over the next couple of days, my electricity bill was increased significantly in an attempt to remove the plastic chemicals from the kettle. Eventually, the taste was gone and I could enjoy a nice cup of tea.
Having had to look at the manual, I realised that it was actually quite well written with plenty of useful advice on how to use the kettle safely; it is much better than the average appliance instruction leaflet.
The manual recommends only boiling the amount of water needed. This is good advice as boiling extra water is a waste of energy. To ensure that the chemical taste does not return, I've started throwing away any water left in the kettle after use. My reasoning is this; if there is any chemicals left in the plastic to be leached out, the hot water remaining in the kettle could do this whilst left between uses. Discarding unused water prevents this.
Finally, we have a kettle that makes nice tea (again). The speed of the new one is much more impressive than the old kettle, and it looks far more stylish. I can now, tentatively recommend the Russell Hobbs 14590 as a high performing kettle, but beware of the chemical taste when first using it.
The kettle cost £45, from one of the high street stores, which I think is quite expensive. I've since found it on sale at Amazon for a much more reasonable £25.99, however.
Summary: A good looking, fast boiling kettle
|Ease of use:|
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