Why Does My Kettle Water Taste Metallic?

If you’ve noticed your morning cup of tea or coffee suddenly tastes a bit off, perhaps even metallic, you are probably not imagining it. Both new and older kettles can make the water you boil in them taste metallic, which is never a pleasant experience, and it can quickly ruin your morning. 

If your kettle water has suddenly acquired a metallic taste, you will want to clean it as soon as possible. Here’s how. 

Why Does a New Kettle Taste Metallic?

The way kettles are made can sometimes make the water you boil in them taste metallic. In order to protect them from damage, manufacturers use a special type of coating both on the inside and the outside. Even though this coating is not harmful or dangerous in any way (otherwise they wouldn’t have used it!), it can add that awkward flavour to the water. 

Another reason a new kettle might be making your water taste metallic has nothing to do with the kettle itself. If you live in an area with hard water, which typically contains elements such as magnesium and calcium, you could be noticing an aroma in your water which should, in essence, be flavourless. 

Chlorine is also often added to tap water. It is a well-known and proven way of keeping the water free from bacteria, but it can also cause that unpleasant taste. 

How To Remove a Bad Taste From a New Kettle?

The excitement of getting a new kettle for your kitchen can easily be overshadowed by the bad taste it leaves in your mouth. However, although annoying and irritating, it is nothing to stress out about. The problem can easily be solved, in just a few steps. 

The first thing you need to do is consider the type of water you are using. If you are boiling tap water, you will need to consider how hard it is in your area, and perhaps consider investing in a water filter as well. Most kettle manufacturers recommend using filtered water, not just to improve the flavour, but also because it is better for the life expectancy of the kettle itself. 

The next step is extremely simple and straightforward. All you need to do is fill the kettle all the way up, and allow the water to boil. Once it is done, discard the water and let it air dry. Repeat the process a few times, and the metallic taste should be gone.

How Many Times Should You Boil a New Kettle?

Most manufacturers recommend boiling a new kettle 3 to 4 times and discarding the water each time. This will effectively get rid of that new kettle smell and taste, as it will remove the chemicals used for its protective coating. 

In case that unpleasant smell that comes with a new appliance is persistent or the kettle water still tastes bad after repeated boiling, try adding 2 tablespoons of bicarbonate of soda to the kettle and filling it with water to the brim. After the water boils, you shouldn’t discard it right away. Let it sit for at least an hour, allowing the bicarbonate soda to absorb whatever it can. 

Once you dispose of the water, rinse the kettle a few times, boil yet another batch of water that you will again discard afterwards, and voila – the kettle should be as clean as a whistle and free of any smells and odd tastes.

If you are in the market for a new kettle, check out my recommendations – and I do hope the one you do decide to buy comes free of any odd smells and tastes. 

How To Remove a Bad Taste From an Old Kettle?

Sometimes old kettles are not a pretty sight, especially on the inside. Not only can they look battered and even unclean, they can also be messing with the taste of your boiled water. 

Fortunately, the solution is simple. The root of the problem lies in the residue found on the bottom of the kettle and its inner walls, so by getting rid of it, you will also eliminate the problem. The procedure might take some time, but there is little to no scrubbing involved.

There are 3 different solutions you can try. In each case, you have to fill the kettle halfway up with water and add the ingredient of your choice: lemon juice or citric acid, baking soda or white vinegar. All of these ingredients are acidic and hailed for their ability to remove gunk, grime, limescale and even kill some types of bacteria.  

If you are using citric acid, add 2 tablespoons to your already boiled water and let it sit for at least 20 minutes. Discard the water, rinse the kettle, boil another batch of water, discard that as well and that’s it. 

Baking soda should be used in a very similar way, only in this case, add 2 tablespoons of baking soda to the water before it boils. Then repeat the steps outlined above. 

In case white vinegar is your anti-limescale weapon of choice, combine equal amounts of water and vinegar. Fill the kettle halfway, let it boil and let it sit for a while. The longer it sits, the better the results. Finally, dispose of the mixture, rinse the kettle a few times, boil another batch of water and discard that as well.

In most cases, your kettle will come out looking clean after the first try. Even if it doesn’t, don’t despair – the method is still working, your kettle could just be in a pretty bad shape. Repeat the process a few times, though twice seems to suffice even for the most limescale-riddled kettles.

How Often Should You Change Your Kettle?

Stovetop kettles should be changed every 5-10 years, whale electric kettles should be replaced after 4 years of use. 

Whichever type of kettle you choose, bear in mind that they need a bit of care and attention. Proper maintenance will both allow them to function properly and prolong their use. Fortunately, this doesn’t involve much work. Descaling your kettle on a regular basis will do the trick, as well as making sure it is kept empty when not in use, as any residual water can cause the accumulation of limescale, and will certainly stain your kettle. 

Wrapping It Up 

If your new kettle has arrived with an odd metallic taste, you have probably forgotten to boil some water in it before making that first cup of tea. If it’s your new kettle causing the same issue, you have likely let too much time pass since your last descaling session. 

Don’t let a metallic tinge in your kettle water worry you. It is easily removed with the help of an acidic agent, and a lot of boiling. 

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