We’ve enjoyed hot instant coffee and tea for more than a score now. So these cordless yet electric tea pots and kettles have therefore, been useful appliances in our kitchens and coffee counters over the years. One electric kettle we’ve used for several years now, multiple times per day, is the Hamilton Beach Cordless Electric Kettle, model # 40891. Our experiences with this economical and beefy water heating device follow.
The 40891 kettle is not really cordless. Yes, there is indeed a cord that you must plug into a fifteen amp outlet attached to the accompanying stand, that supplies power to the heating elements built into the pot. Wireless water heating is not yet available outside of microwave ovens. But the fact that the pot itself has no permanently attached power cord makes for much easier filling and less dangerous while pouring boiling water into teacups. This is a substantial appliance that exudes an air of durability and dependability that you’d probably like owning. Nothing looks cheap about this cordless yet high-powered teapot.
Benefits, Features, Pros, and Advantages
- Rapidly boils water. The sealed 1500-watt heaters built into the bottom of the pot, boil nearly 2 liters of water in approximately six minutes here in Altoona, PA. It may heat more quickly at higher altitudes.
- Low noise operation. Functions quietly, even when the water is boiling.
- Heavy duty power cord. The connecting cord to electricity, found on the power base, barely heats at all during operation. They sized the wire thickness well here.
- Three prong plug. Includes the third (grounding) prong, for added protection against electric shock during handling.
- No skid feet. The stand that supplies power to the pot piece comes equipped with substantial anti-skid feet that prevent sliding of the whole unit even when full and heavy. These also provide acoustic isolation from the counter, and this likely helps to further dampen any boiling water sounds.
- Removable lid. Features a removable metal lid that has a black insulating handle, that fits the wide, round kettle mouth. Supports quick filling from the sink tap.
- Removable strainer. A screen mesh filter, fits into the spout, from the inside, and prevents mineral deposit chunks and other debris from escaping the kettle into your teacup.
- Big mouth. The large-diameter mouth on this cordless kettle makes for quick and easy filling and cleaning with little slop and spill.
- Bright LED pilot lamp. The red pilot lamp lights up when the unit is ON and heating. It illuminates the water level window / gage.
- Large ON OFF Lever. A transparent red, lever makes starting and stopping the kettle a snap; literally.
- Auto shutoff feature. This heated kettle automatically shuts down soon after the water inside boils, which, when filled with nearly two liters of cold water, occurs within five to seven minutes.
- No exposed burner elements. The supporting stand remains cool to the touch. Note that this stand is not a burner, and thus, contains no heating elements. The heaters are sealed in the bottom of the removable kettle.
- Stainless steel construction. The kettle has the “in” look of a spun stainless steel finish on all its metal parts, with black plastic for the handle, stand, and lid that compliments the metal with a subtle yet definite contrasting appearance.
- Insulated handles. With the handle being plastic, there is little chance of electric shock from this appliance.
- Easy to poor. The positioning of the handle provides exceptional balance and thus, ease of carrying this kettle from its stand to your teacup. Pouring is a breeze.
- Economical. We paid approximately $33 for ours, back in 2009.
- Makes some startling noises. Occasionally, this cordless kettle clicks and snaps, even hours after last use. This is likely the mechanical shut-off mechanism inside cooling down, and could be remedied by incorporating a fully electronic thermostat system in future models.
- Full two-liter capacity would be grand. We’d prefer that this appliance held a full two liters of fluid instead of the 1.7 liters that it’s designed for.
- Mild Discoloration. In our well-used copy, the stainless steel lid has begun turning brown. Interesting, since we’ve only ever boiled clear WATER in this pot. The browning however, is likely a normal phenomenon that happens to stainless steel when repeatedly heated over several years.
- Heavy power demands. The downside of quickly boiling water with electricity, are the high current requirements. This appliance draws 1500 watts. So if you plug it into a circuit that is shared by other appliances, you may experience frequent tripped circuit breakers. So, we recommend plugging this kettle into outlets on circuits with no other outlets or installed appliances on them. If that’s not possible, then while boiling water with this, make sure the other appliances on the line are turned off.
- Does not keep water hot. There’s no standby mode on this appliance. So once the water boils, and this kettle turns off, there is no keep-warm heat.
- Difficult to clean inside. While the opening in the top is plenty big enough for filling, getting a hand inside with a washrag can be a trial. However, periodic cleaning in there can be necessary, particularly in hard-water regions. A larger access port therefore, would probably solve this problem.
- Can develop leaks. We’ve owned two of these. The first lasted three years, but had to be replaced, because it began leaking near the start / stop lever. Surprising that a simple device like a kettle would leak. This may have involved the steam sensor, a mechanism that physically pushes the start / stop lever to the OFF position when sufficient steam pressure builds up inside the kettle.
In total, we’re quite pleased with the 40891 electric kettle from Hamilton Beach. It has proven to be highly dependable, and we use ours A LOT. So, we would recommend it to anyone in routine need of quickly heated hot water. Our rating is thus 95 out of 100.
Where We Bought Ours
We purchased this heated teapot at Walmart.
- 2015-11-29: Added appropriate tags.
- 2015-09-06: Added the “Cordless Electric Kettles” tag.
- 2014-12-04: Originally published.