CozyHome Magazine


Enjoy Your Tea But Not Scale! 7 Tips How to Descale a Kettle



It doesn’t matter what kind of kettle you have at home, electric, enamel or metal, sooner or later, the scale will appear. Even expensive water filters will not help. Electric kettles get damaged very fast because of the scale. And at the bottom of metal or enamel kettles, there can be formed a mixture of scale and rust.

What is the reason of the scale appearing

In usual kettles, the scale is formed right on the inner walls and bottom. In electrical models, the scale affects mostly a heating element which is in direct contact with water. Limescale is formed because of the salts which are found in the water. The more salts, the larger is scale. Hard water can be softened by filters, however, even they cannot completely remove the salts from the water.


The effects of limescale

You should not ignore the problem of scale. First, it is a cause of premature failure of electric kettles and destruction of the walls of the usual ones. Limescale leads to overheating of the vessel. It does not allow the liquid to contact with the steel having a high conductivity, thereby heating the steel up to excessive temperatures. 

 In electric kettles, the heating element is made of steel, and as a result of scaling, it experiences a strong thermal resistance what leads to breakage.

Second, when the scale gets in our body, it extremely negative affects our health. There can be significant problems with the urinary tract and kidneys.

Preventive care

Before describing the methods of descaling the utensil, you should learn a few simple rules that will help you to make cleaning procedures easier.

  1. Wash the tea every day cleaning it from a thin plaque with a sponge.
  2. For boiling, use water pre-cleaned in a filter.
  3. After each boiling, drain the liquid from the vessel. Do not leave it for a long time, especially overnight.
  4. To get rid of the scale, do not wait until it becomes a thick layer because it will be difficult to remove it.
Never use metal scouring pads, brushes and materials containing solid abrasive particles to get rid of the scale. The scratched surface of the metal walls will acquire scale much faster.


Here are collected the best ways to remove scale in the kettle. No matter what method of cleaning is more suitable for you, do not forget to wash the vessel after the procedure and boil the water once or twice to prevent the agent getting into your tea. The remains of vinegar or baking soda can cause poisoning.

Cleaning with vinegar – for metal kettles

Cleaning with vinegar is the fastest and very effective way to clean dishes without harm to your health and application of chemical households.

  1. First, fill 2/3 of the vessel with liquid and the remaining third fill with vinegar.
  2. Let the water boil, and then leave the kettle as long as the liquid gets cool. After some time, the scale begins to dissolve. It happens because the acid in the vinegar comes into a chemical reaction with salt and dissolve it.
  3. However, do not forget to thoroughly rinse the utensil afterwards as the acetic acid will remain on its walls, and then gets into your body with tea.

Cleaning with citric acid – for plastic electric kettles

You cannot use vinegar for electric models, but the citric acid is a great assistant for cleaning. Dissolve 1-2 sachets of citric acid (1-2 teaspoons) in 1 liter of water, pour the solution into the kettle and boil. The scale will disappear without a trace having peeled off after acid. You will need only to rinse the vessel and boil the clean water. Still, boiling with a solution of citric acid is an extreme measure. The perfect way of care is a monthly cleaning with citric acid without boiling. Just dilute the acid in water, fill the kettle and leave it for a few hours.

Cleaning with fizzy drinks – for all types of kettles but electric ones

Descaling with Fanta, Coca-Cola or Sprite is really an effective homemade way. These drinks perfectly clean rust, scale from dishes and even automobile parts.

First, you need to keep the drink open for a while. After the bubbles disappear, simply fill in the vessel and bring to a boil. Then thoroughly wash. The method is not suitable for electric kettles. 

  It is better to use Sprite as Coca-Cola and Fanta can paint the kettle.

Cleaning with soda, citric acid and vinegar – for the most difficult cases (but for electric kettles)

This method is perfect when the scale is too stubborn. Pour the water into the utensil, add a spoonful of baking soda, boil the solution, and then drain the liquid. Then again fill with water and add citric acid (1 tablespoon per kettle). Boil for half an hour on low heat. Drain again, add fresh liquid, pour vinegar (1/2 cup), and boil again for 30 minutes. Even if the scale does not go away after such cleaning, it will be loose and you can remove it with a sponge. Hard brushes are not recommended for all types of kettles.

Cleaning with soda – for metal and enamel kettles

It is one of the most simple and effective methods that will not take a lot of time.

  1. Fill the vessel with water and add 1 tablespoon of baking soda.
  2. Put the kettle to boil, leave it for 20 minutes, and then drain the liquid.
  3. Then fill the kettle with fresh water with the addition of 20 grams of citric acid.
  4. Boil the liquid and leave for half an hour.

After this procedure, rinse the kettle. If the scale has not disappeared, it will become loose and you can easily clean the vessel with a usual sponge.

Cleaning with pickle-water

Another homemade way is cleaning the kettle with pickle-water. The citric acid that is found in pickle-water also helps to remove the scale. The scheme is the same: pour the pickle-water, boil the liquid, cool down, and wash. In addition, this water perfectly removes rust from the salts in the kettle.

Cleaning with peelings – for enamel and metal kettles

This method is suitable for the weak layer of scale in enamel and metal kettles. Thoroughly wash the potato peels, removing the dirt and sand, put them into the kettle, fill it with water, and boil. After boiling, leave the clean peelings in the kettle for an hour or two, and then carefully wash. Apple or pear peelings can cope with a slight touch of white scale deposits, as well.

There are various special descaling means, but you can do it without any hassle using the most common products that there are always at home or can be easily found in the nearest grocery store.

And remember, before you descale the kettle, you should notify your family members, as any of them can make coffee boiled with Sprite, or even worse.

Author: Anna Wallace