How to clean stainless steel kettles

Updated February 21, 2017

Stainless steel kettles heat water for tea or instant coffee. The heating process leaves lime and mineral deposits on the inside of the kettles, leaving a white, scaly appearance. The mineral deposits are virtually impossible to remove with ordinary soap and water. Acid breaks down the lime and mineral stains in stainless steel kettles, giving you a more attractive kettle and better-tasting warm beverages.

Unplug electric stainless steel kettles or remove non-electric kettles from a heat source, and allow them to cool completely.

Fill the kettle halfway with white vinegar. Fill the remainder of the kettle with water. Plug in the electric kettle, or place the non-electric kettle on the stove and turn the burner on high. Allow the solution in the kettle to come to a boil.

Remove the kettle from the heat source, and allow the vinegar solution to sit in the kettle for 20 minutes to loosen the lime scale from the walls of the kettle. Pour the vinegar solution from the kettle, and wipe the inside walls gently with a scouring pad. Rinse the kettle with warm water.

Fill a sink with warm water and 1 tablespoon liquid dish soap. Dip a dishrag into the soapy mixture, and wipe the inside and outside of the kettle with a dishrag. Rinse the kettle with warm water, and dry with a dish towel.


Heat one kettle full of water and discard after cleaning to remove any aftertaste the vinegar or soap may leave in the kettle.

Things You'll Need

  • White vinegar
  • Scouring pad
  • Liquid dish soap
  • Dishrag
  • Dish towel
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About the Author

Constance Barker, located in the hills of southern Ohio, is the owner and writer of several financial, credit report and travel websites. She started writing in 1999 for private clients and began creating website content in 2004. She gained expertise in home improvement after she and her husband built their home themselves.