Product Type: Russell Hobbs kettles
Newest Review: ... and pretty cheerful kettle. I think a good rating of 5 out of 5 stars is in order for this Russell Hobbs kettle as I can't find fault and... more
Boiling in Buxton
Russell Hobbs Buxton 17869
Member Name: melinda3536
Russell Hobbs Buxton 17869
Date: 29/01/12, updated on 04/09/13 (111 review reads)
Advantages: Boils well, pours well, looks nice
Disadvantages: tricky lid, difficult to clean filter
We were going to Tesco anyway, so we surveyed their available stock. This Russell Hobbs 'Buxton' model kettle seemed to fit our budget - not too expensive but not overly cheap, reasonable reputation, and they had a black one in stock (I fancied a change from the off-white that ours had become with age). It cost around £24 if memory serves. All of the current designs seem to be cordless, 360 degree bases, with flip top lids and low on/off switches and this was no different. It works well, its covered element is fast to boil, and has a decent 1.6 litre capacity, marked from 0.5 litre minimum, then at 4, 5 and 6 cup levels.
The transparent lever switch lights up orange when it's on. When it comes to the boil, it continues for a few seconds until it's really boiling hard before switching off, something which I appreciate as you feel that any impurities that may creep in have really been dealt with. I like having a black kettle, it looks somehow more stylish than its white counterpart (it's available in both), and it's a lot more modern-looking than our old dilapidated model. In fact it's a bit conspicuous in our not particularly up to date kitchen, but I like to see it as a promise of things to come, in looks at least!
So on the whole it's a reliable piece of equipment, but inevitably there are a few niggles. For the first couple of weeks there was a terrific smell of hot plastic every time you boiled the kettle. This transferred to whichever drink it was that you were making at the time, and I was concerned for a while that the taste would never go off. As usual, the only advice pre-use was to fill it, boil it and discard that first lot of water, which I did. Unfortunately the nasty taste lingered on. Thankfully though after around a fortnight it did eventually stop happening and now drinks taste absolutely fine.
The lid is my biggest ongoing gripe. It doesn't open up to a full 90 degrees, so trying to get water into the kettle in the first place can be quite awkward, particularly if you're having to use a jug to fill it, when I find the water easily ends up going down the sides because of the tricky angle of approach. It's also difficult because of the filter. It's the first time that I've had a kettle with one of these, and I find it quite obtrusive, since the water can also bounce off it when trying to fill the kettle. It's not particularly effective either, since any scale it's trying to catch will inevitably be washed around the sides or over the top of the thing if you pour the water out too enthusiastically.
Trying to clean the filter is another tricky issue, since you need to remove it. Now this I suspect is more difficult with this black version of the kettle, purely because it is incredibly dark in there, but the small lid and poor opening angle again are also problems here. Trying to angle the open kettle under a light while you try to dislodge the filter from its small plastic clips, and then doing the whole performance in reverse when replacing it, is not an easy job. I have already holed ours by accidentally putting a finger through it. I suspect that I'll probably just leave it out completely soon, and return to giving the kettle a good rinse every morning as I used to do with the old one in between de-scales.
The base was an interesting dilemma at first, since the kettle did a merry dance when it hit the hard boil. I have had to find the best position for the kettle to be placed on it, despite the fact that it's supposed to be perfectly even, to stop it from out-dancing Strictly.
To sum up - it's an adequate kettle, it boils well, pours well without dripping back (but pour slowly if you haven't de-scaled it recently), and looks stylish. The niggles are just that - none of them is serious enough to make me take it back, but others may feel differently. I feel that it more or less fits in the price range - it's good enough, not perfect, but adequate for the price.
3.9.13 - an update: Most importantly it goes through brief phases of not switching itself off when it's boiled. This mean that someone has to be near and paying attention when it's being boiled. This may sounds normal, but anything can happen to distract. I have now permanently removed the limescale filter as it just became too much of a nuisance, and the mesh within it had split when I was trying to refit it after cleaning. I now just give it a thorough rinse every day to shift any floating bits of limescale, which I'm happy to do. Perhaps more annoyingly though, the lid now sticks closed, with the release button no longer triggering the catch. I have found a way around this, which is to 'release' the button while at the same time applying pressure to the spout end of the lid, pushing it backwards rather then downwards, which results in the lid popping open. It's a bit of a faff but it works. I resent the idea of having to spend out on another kettle so soon, so while it is still safe to use (electrically speaking), I'm happy to persevere with it!.
Summary: A very good mid-range kettle
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