If you live in an area with hard water, over time your kettle will probably become clogged with unsightly limescale. So, what is limescale and how do you get rid of it from your kettle? Read on to find out.

What is limescale?

Limescale is a mineral more correctly called calcium carbonate that is found in tap water. Each time tap water passes through a hot appliance, such as a kettle, limescale deposits are left behind as a milky white solid after the water has evaporated.

Although limescale is unsightly, it's harmless to people. However, a build-up of limescale in your kettle could eventually prevent it from working properly. Scrubbing at the limescale alone won't get rid of it and you could damage your kettle in the process.

What can you do to remove limescale from your kettle?

Limescale is easy to remove from your kettle. You should get into the habit of cleaning and de-scaling the appliance every couple of months by following these directions to keep your kettle clear of limescale.

You will need

  • household white vinegar or a special kettle de-scaling product
  • water
  • kitchen cleaning product
  • clean cloths

You can find what you need for this job in good DIY stores.

Method #1

You can buy chemical de-scaling products specifically for cleaning kettles. Use this method with a de-scaling product.

  1. Begin by diluting a kettle cleaning product in clean water as per the manufacturer's directions. Pour the solution into the kettle.  
  2. Bring the kettle up to the boil for a few minutes and then leave the cleaning solution to soak into the limescale for an hour or so.  
  3. Empty the kettle and rinse it out thoroughly with clean, cold water.

Method #2

If you prefer to use a natural cleaning product, follow this method, using white vinegar. If you prefer, you can also use fresh lemon juice, which also leaves your kettle smelling fresh and lemony.

  1. Fill up the kettle with white vinegar and clean, cold water in equal measures.  
  2. Leave the solution to soak into the limescale for an hour or so.  
  3. After an hour's soaking time, bring the kettle up to the boil.  
  4. Empty the kettle and rinse it out thoroughly with clean water.

When your kettle is free from limescale, give the outside of the appliance a wipe over with general purpose kitchen cleaner and a clean, damp cloth. Steel kettles can be polished up to a stunning shine with glass cleaning spray.