* Prices may differ from that shown
Contrary to what some would believe, not all Brits are obsessed with kettles; however, as this is my second kettle review in a short time, I feel it behoves me to explain why I am in possession of yet another kettle.
The Russell Hobbs 18770 Futura was bought as a replacement for a kettle from another manufacturer; With a permanent move to Slovenia planned for the first half of 2014 I was fairly vexed at the breakdown of a kettle that was reasonably new when I had planned on that kettle being certain to last until the move, at which time it could be passed on to someone else.
It says something about my reliance on kettles that I was able to manage perfectly well without an electric kettle until I had banked a few quid in Amazon vouchers to cover the cost of a new one. Of course, a pan of water requires more attention than an electric kettle so I was keen to get something ordered and installed in my kitchen. I am perfectly well aware that stove top kettles can be used but since I didn't have one when the old kettle died on me, the only option available to me until I could purchase an alternative was to use a saucepan.
I am of the opinions that for some products there is simply too much choice. My only requirement was that the kettle should have a decent capacity, plus I didn't want to spend a small fortune on it. The Russell Hobbs 18770 Futura has a capacity of 1.7 litres and the Amazon price at the time of purchase was £17.97. According to Amazon it is the best selling kettle in its catalogue; I didn't read any reviews but I hoped that if lots of other people had bought the kettle, they had read the reviews on my behalf and were happy to part with their money for this model.
According to Russell Hobbs the main features of this model are:
Brushed Stainless Steel
Removable washable filter
Illuminated on/off switch
Boil dry protection
Push button plastic lid
Powerful 3 kW rapid boil
Concealed element for fast boiling
360º cordless base
Having recently refurbished the kitchen and wanting to present it nicely when the flat goes on the market, I opted for a stainless steel model which I think looks a bit smarter than white plastic (which I have found with other models I have owned does tend to discolour more quickly than it ought to); however, I have found that, after only moderate use, the metal looks a little "mottled" with water marks that are quite difficult to shift.
The design is very sleek and simple but the slightly odd looking spout rang alarm bells; in practice my concerns were realised because this kettle does not pour well and as a consequence I am frequently mopping up water from the work top. Only be very careful positioning of the beak like spout can you minimise the spillage; it takes a little experimentation.
The weight is reasonable, not too heavy, even when full, but not so light that it feels cheap and flimsy. In fact overall this feels like a sturdy appliance and not at all clunky (which is the case with case with the plastic Russell Hobbs kettle I own in Slovenia).
This kettle boils quickly which is just as well because it is very noisy; I can hear it boiling away in the kitchen at the back of the flat when I am in the main bedroom at the front. It is without a doubt the loudest electric kettle I have ever heard. One average sized mug of water takes just one minute to boil in a completely cold kettle, and two mugs take only a fraction longer.
The 360º cordless base is a nice feature to have in a kettle that is used in a small kitchen because it means you don't have to depend on the kettle and base being positioned in a precise way. The base is small and the kettle is tall rather than wide, another advantage for those with minimal space; on the other hand the kettle is not so tall that it is awkward to get under the tap. Occasionally I might need to fill the kettle when the washing up bowl is full, and I am able to angle the kettle and get it under the tap without dunking the base in the washing up bowl.
This model does not have a gauge to indicate the water level and it did take me a few attempts to really judge just by weight; I find that simply peering inside the kettle does not give a fair impression of the contents.
The limescale filter has not really been given much work in this house as it takes a long time for scale to build up on any water consuming appliance here. However, out of curiosity I have removed the filter and it is easy to remove and replace.
Although this kettle is less than perfect in several areas I am happy enough with the speed at which it boils and its sturdiness. I am optimistic that it's the last one I'll be buying in the UK. I wouldn't choose this model again but the price paid was fair.
Note: a number of sellers on Amazon carry this model so prices vary. We bought directly from Amazon to get free delivery.
3 kW / Rapid boil / Boil dry protection / automatically switches off when the kettle is empty / Removable and washable limescale filter / Push button operated lid / 360 degree base / Manufacturer's 2 year guarantee / EAN/MPN/UPC/ISBN: 4008496729869 / 1.7 litre capacity / Concealed element for easy cleaning / By Russell Hobbs / Short name: Russell Hobbs 18770