I've had this teasmade for a while, and it's fab. My parents had a swan teasmade when I was little, in fact my mum still uses it, I'm pretty sure it's the same one, so it's clearly well made.
My husband bought me this as I love a cuppa in bed in the morning. I absolutely love it. I set it up the night before and place a small amount of milk in a cup. In warm weather you could even put a milk ice cube in before bed so the milk doesnt spoil. Tea bag goes in the ceramic jug and when the alarm goes off, tea is brewing. Of course you could put coffee in the jug and have that instead. It boils quickly, although it is rather noisy. The water then pours through in to the jug before the alarm goes off.
Before use you have to run boiling water through a few times. I found it took around a week to get rid of the chemically taste, but it soon disappeared.
The ceramic jug could easily make two cups of tea. It's easy to clean and set back up, and very easy to use. No more going downstairs in the cold to boil the kettle, I can come round in bed with a cup of tea and the radio before braving getting out of bed.
One thing that isn't perfect is that I like my tea very hot, and sometimes by the time it has brewed it's cooled off slightly. I'm sure I could rectify this with a little tea cosy.
The light behind the clock is quite bright. I don't have it right next to my bed but if it was it might disturb your sleep.
The alarm is quite quiet but it's loud enough to wake me up. In fact I usually wake to the water boiling. It's a nice machine, looks modern and stylish, and does the job perfectly.
I am someone who just has to have a cup of tea before starting the day. I also tend to wake up quite early in the morning and like to watch the morning news before getting up. Being able to have that all important first cup of tea whilst watching the TV really appealed to me, but going downstairs and waking the children and dog is not so appealing! With this in mind I decided to treat myself to a teasmade. I remembered my parents having one when I was a child so had expected to find retro looking models on offer. However I was pleasantly surprised by what was available and finally choose the Swan stm 100 model for its stylish looks and reasonable price tag. I paid £59 for the teasmade from Tesco direct, although have noticed it is on sale from Amazon for £52. I opted to have it delivered to my local store to avoid paying postage.
Whats in the box.
The teasmade is smaller than the one I remember my parents having and measures 18 cm in length x 37 cm in width and 22.5 cm in height. It fits easily onto my small bedside cabinet. It weight 2.5 kg and so it is easy to carry.
The thing that first attracted me to this particular model is its stylish contemporary looks. It is made of sturdy white plastic and has a ceramic white tea pot with a 600ml capacity (enough to make 4 cups of tea or coffee). At the top of the machine is a large reading light and next to it is the lid to access the water tank.
The clock is a 12 hour analogue model and has LCD backlighting. Full operating instructions are included and I found it really easy to set up and operate.
The teasmade has a 2 year manufactures warranty.
How does it work?
The instructions advise that you clean out the ceramic tea pot the first time it is used. To do this you will need to fill the teapot with water leaving about an inch at the top. Open the lid at the top and pour the water into the tank. Replace the cap and then press the *tea now* button. Once the boiling water has emptied into the tea pot from the tank you need to tip it away and you are ready for business!
The clock and alarm are really easy to set. Simply press the button with the clock icon situated at the front of the machine until the clock is at the correct time. Each press will move the clock on by one minute or you can speed things up by keeping the button pressed down. The alarm is set in a similar way, simply press the alarm button until you have selected the time you want to be woken up. The alarm button will light up when the alarm is set and a dot on the clock face indicates the time you have selected.
The ceramic teapot is designed to hold exactly the right amount of water for the tank and no other jug should be used to fill the tank. Once you have filled the tank, place 2 teabags into the teapot (or 4 teaspoons of coffee if you prefer) and place the teapot onto its stand ensuring it clicks into place resting against the safety switch. Activate the *automatic tea* button. The tea making process will now start 5 minutes before the alarm is due to go off, so your tea will be ready when you wake up.
I have been using this teasmade for several months now so feel able to give a balanced review.
I have already indicated how much I like the design of this machine, I think it looks stylish and it also feels well made with its ceramic teapot and curved top reading light. I also like the large analogue clock and find the numbers easy to read. The backlighting is quite bright and I have read reviews complaining that it is TOO bright. However I have no problem with the light and find it useful if I wake up and need to see.
I am really useless with technology and so am pleased to report that this is a really easy machine to operate! The operating buttons are clearly labelled with icons and would suit probably be suitable for most people to operate.
The most important thing is of course the quality of the cuppa it makes! I am pleased to say that it makes an excellent cup of tea and that it is also really hot, just as I like it. I have not used the machine to make coffee as I only drink coffee after lunch, but it is designed to do so. You will need to remember to take a cup and some milk to bed if you want to avoid going to the kitchen! I find the tea pours well from the spout and have never had a problem with any spillage or drips.
The machine is really easy to clean and it is recommended that you wash the ceramic teapot after each use. I tend to wash it by hand with warm soapy water but it is dishwasher safe. The tank should also be emptied on a regular basis to help prevent the build-up of lime scale.
The alarm issues a series of beeps when it goes off and is not very loud. I am usually awake long before the alarm but if you are a deep sleeper you may find this a problem.
Overall I can highly recommend this teasmade and hope it will give me many years of service.
Please note this is a review for the model without a radio. It is exactly the same machine however just with no radio!