A nice cup of tea always puts a smile on our faces in our household. I will admit I do probably drink a bit too much tea but I enjoy it. So when our old trusty kettle of four years broke I had to go out the next morning and buy a new one. Unfortunately it was coming to the end of the month and money was tight so we opted for a cheaper kettle than previous. In our local Tesco store we picked up the Tricity TJKSB10 not only did the price impress us but so did the style. It had to be a win win didn't it!
The Tricity kettle is a stainless steel kettle and although they are more difficult to keep looking clean than a plastic style one I prefer them. Unlike our last short and dumpy looking kettle this particular one is tall and thick looking. It has a very large thick black handle on the side which I thought would be great for holding on too. Also down the side is a clear water indicator which I think nearly all kettles come with. But this kettle is flasher with a blue illuminating indicator for when the kettle is switched on. Altogether I like the whole look of the kettle it is a bit different to other kettles on the market and looks strong and stylish.
The Tricity TJKSB10 is a cordless kettle that sits on a round base which is plugged in. This stainless steel kettle has a capacity of 1.7 litres which is a good size and does our small family. As I have mentioned it is a large thick looking kettle and measures 26cms in height and roughly 16cms in width and is good and steady. The kettle comes with a water level indicator which is situated down the side near the handle. The leveller is measured in litres with a maximum level. As well as a water level indicator it also comes with a blue illuminating indicator to tell you when the kettle is in use. As we live in a small open plan cottage I can see the kettle from my living room so I can see when the light goes out if I don't hear the kettle boil, it's the little things! The kettle also comes with a lime scale filter to keep that at bay.
Opening the kettle is easy you pull back the small silver notch on the lid and it lifts up. You can then fill the kettle up with water watching the water level on the side to make sure it's not too full. Then it's a case of a flick of the switch down and away it goes. If the kettle is cold and is filled to maximum it does take just under five minutes to boil this particular kettle does not come with rapid boil.
On initial looks I loved the kettle it looks very stylish in my kitchen and goes with my theme of stainless steel and grey appliances. The blue light whilst in use just added to the stylish look of the product and entertains the kids they love waiting to watch it go off. But unfortunately that is where the good points end. Don't get me wrong this kettle is usable and I guess I got what I paid for but it does have some negatives that take a bit of getting used to. Pouring this kettle has become an art if tipped too much it leaks and water spills all over the work top. It has to be poured slowly and carefully so no more quick cups of teas in the morning! This problem can be managed though although my fiancé wouldn't agree he hates it. Dribbling seems to be an occurring problem with this product as when you open the lid water dribbles down the back of it.
The other problem this kettle has is a large build up of lime scale my old kettle was no were near as bad. The filter does stop it getting into your tea which is the main thing.
If I was buying another kettle I wouldn't buy this particular one again but on the other hand I am not rushing out to replace it. It does have faults but it does work, it boils water perfectly fine.
I purchased this product from my local Tesco's store for £19.97 currently reduced (May 2012) to £16.96. Is it worth nearly £20, I'm not too sure. You can get cheaper kettles that work as well if not better but then they don't have the look of this kettle maybe that is what you pay for because it's certainly not it's performance.
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As kettles go they don't come much cheaper than the Tricity TJKSB10, a stainless steel clad 1.7 litre cordless jug kettle which I bought from Tesco's for the princely sum of £19.97 after my previous kettle decided to give up the ghost, out of the blue refusing to be opened by any means. I bought this kettle as a stop gap solution whilst I decided what to do, but several months on it's proving to be more than up to the task of being the provider of the daily cuppa in our household and is still looking as good as the day I bought it; though it does have a few of its own little quirks, for the price I'm not really complaining, well not too much anyway.
The Tricity kettle has quite classic looks - you can see it and judge for yourself at the link at the end of this review. It's clad in a surprisingly good quality brushed stainless steel and has a black handle, water guage and perhaps most impressively of all, it's one of those kettles that lights up when it's being used. In the base there is a rather classy looking blue light that can also be seen in the water gauge whilst the kettle is being used. Talking of which, the main thing of note about the kettle is, of course, its boiling potential. Whilst not the most powerful at 2.2 KW (the model up from this is 3KW and rapid boil, which this isn't), the kettle does boil quickly enough for my needs and, importantly, near to enough silently - something which my previous kettle failed to do. The button at the base of the appliance to press it on to start with doesn't feel like the most sturdy thing in the world in all honesty, and the handle itself is a little plasticky to touch to say the least. I also think that the 360 degree base could be a bit sturdier and heavier. That said, features like a generous cord length and a removable limescale filter do make up for the feeling that the kettle is a bit basic, and because it is quite light weight it is easy to take on and off the base, another plus. It is not a cold wall kettle but then at this price I wouldn't really expect it to be.
I always like a kettle that is easy to fill, and again, this one comes up trumps. After my issue with a push button opening kettle that wouldn't open, it was a relief to find that this kettle, on the face of it, opens more simply. It has a sliding button it the top which is a bit strange to begin with but seems to have less potential to go wrong, and as I have already said, over months of use so far so good. The whole lid lifts up, making filling from the tap a breeze. The minimum fill is 0.75ml, which is adequate, and the 1.7litre capacity seems pretty standard.
I find the kettle a little bit tricky to pour if I am honest - my husband reckons there is just a knack to it, but if you do pour a bit quickly, it is what can only be described as a bit drippy, rather more care than I would like has to be taken when dishing out the boiled water. This is probably due to the plastic spout, another feature which does add to the feeling that this kettle is, essentially, a plastic one with a bit of stainless steel cladding. I also find the water guage prone to condensation, and because the inner is a black plastic it needs regular descaling in my hard water area, however it has to be said that the concealed element is, again, quite an unexpected bonus at this price. My final niggle would be with the badge on the kettle, they have put a "tricity" label on which looks like it has been stuck on by a toddler and appears to be a sticker, they really shouldn't have bothered in my opinion.
Overall then, daily use of this kettle has lead me to the conclusion that its looks are far better than its function. For the price, as I said at the start, I can't really complain and, for a cheap kettle it seems to be lasting well so far. If you can live with the little quirks I have highlighted it's still worth considering buying this kettle, if you are a huge tea drinker you might be better off looking at a slightly more expensive model. Ultimately this is a plastic jug kettle that looks like a more expensive item than it actually is but, in use, reveals its true nature. Recommended - just.
Link to the product:
http://direct.tesco.com/q/R.208-2144.aspx - there's a matching light up toaster
Overall rating - good - please ignore the picture and sound quality which are not relevant
Short name: Tricity TJKSB10