Our pick of the best kettles for hard water areas 2024

Stop those pesky limescale flakes infiltrating your tea with the best kettles for the job.

Sage Kettle, Smeg Kettle, Brita Kettle, Russell Hobbs Kettle

by Eleanor Weaver |
Updated on

We've found the best kettles for hard water so you can get a clean and clear cup of Joe every time. In the UK, most of us live in a hard water area and have had to deal with limescale across our homes — so we've made it our mission to find the best kettles for hard water areas. Nothing takes the biscuit more than rogue flakes slipping into your tea or coffee from your kettle, turning that beloved brew into a less-appetising and unplanned infusion.

Our team of shopping experts tried and tested a number of kettles in their homes with hard water to find which ones delivered a limescale-free cuppa from these very best quiet kettles. They also looked for those that included the necessary specs to ensure limescale could be prevented from building up over time.

Best kettles for hard water at a glance:

Best value: Russell Hobbs Brita Purity Filter Clear Plastic Kettle 22851 – Buy now on Amazon UK
Best for an extra clean cuppa: Russell Hobbs 20760-10 Brita Purify Kettle – Buy now on Amazon UK
Best for temperature control: Sage The Smart Kettle – Buy now on Sage
Best for energy efficiency: Russell Hobbs Inspire Electric Kettle – Buy now on Amazon UK

Whether you are on the hunt for the best smart kettles or want something simple and effective to filter tap water, we have hand-selected the top products on the market to help you on your way. Hannah Hamer, Assistant Marketing Manager at Russell Hobbs says it's important to invest in a kettle such as this - as impurities such as limescale "can leave a bad taste in your hot drink along with pesky residue". Below, we cover the different types of limescale prevention technology in our buyer's guide.

We also studied the reviews for each kettle listed, making sure we only selected kettles with excellent reviews — a minimum of four out of five stars. We want to make sure the best kettles for hard water we have selected have met the demands of real-life users and go on to deliver customer satisfaction.

Best kettles for hard water

Best value kettle

Russell Hobbs Brita Purity Filter Clear Plastic Kettle 22851 Credit: Amazon

Russell Hobb's range of kettles with BRITA Filtration built-in will ensure you get the best-tasting brew with zero limescale. The filter cartridge reduces limescale, metals, and chlorine, filtering your water slowly to remove impurities. On top of that, it also has a built-in indicator that lets you know when the cartridge needs changing and rapid boil too. All for under £50 - we love a bargain.

A customer commented: "I bought this kettle as the limescale in my area where I live is horrendous! Best decision I ever made! Cups of tea are so much better and taste miles better than they did before!" Tried and tested by someone who lives in a hard water area, this kettle has been put through rigorous testing - and has faced pesky limescale head-on. And, most reviews agree.

Though not the most stylish pick of the bunch, this Russell Hobbs Brita Purity Filter Clear Plastic Kettle 22851 is undeniably great value, with great-tasting water guaranteed. What's not to love?

Pros

  • Filters and boils simultaneously
  • Budget-friendly, quiet and stylish
  • Delivers great-tasting water

Cons

  • Small capacity at just one litre - best for smaller households

Best kettle for extra-clean cuppas

Russell Hobbs 20760-10 Brita Purify Kettle Credit: Amazon

This Russell Hobbs 20760-10 Brita Purify Kettle is much the same as the Russell Hobbs Brita Purity Filter Clear Plastic Kettle, the difference being it's made of glass instead of plastic with a built-in Brita filter. It's the purest material for a kettle (it doesn't release any metals) and is even easier to clean.

A customer commented: "I love this kettle because it makes my tea taste great, which living in a hard water area. They add that not having to "constantly fill the water [filter] jug" is a huge plus - and cuts out the middle man. And, despite that, this kettle is still fairly priced. You will need to change the filter a few times and a descale now and again, but with some de-scaling care, it will serve you well.

Though a little more expensive and heavier than the previous model, it definitely has its perks. For example, this kettle also has a rapid boil, a concealed heating element, and a BRITA filter system.

Pros

  • Filters and boils simultaneously
  • Quiet, stylish and boils quickly
  • Delivers great-tasting water

Cons

  • It has the same small capacity, but there is the extra need to be more careful with glass!

Best kettle for large capacity

Breville BRITA HotCup Hot Water DispenserCredit: Amazon

While this isn't technically a kettle, it's the best way to achieve the same great filtration as the Russell Hobb filter kettles but with a better capacity. It has a huge 1.8-litre capacity to hold enough water for seven to nine cups and has variable dispense, so it can auto-switch off if you're busy preparing other drinks. It has the BRITA filter technology and the bonus of a permanent limescale filter built-in, too.

A customer commented that this dispenser is a "game-changer" to their routine, with the promise of "unparalleled convenience and energy efficiency." Fast-boiling, you spend less time waiting at the kettle, hoping it boils quicker. 50 seconds is not a long time to wait - and "is particularly handy for those busy mornings". Though pricey, this dispenser strikes "a balance between practicality and efficiency", making the Breville BRITA HotCup Hot Water Dispenser ideal for households, or offices.

Perfect for tea or coffee lovers looking for a quick caffeine fix, this hot water dispenser is designed to deliver a hot cup of water in under 50 seconds. It speeds everything up - and no limescale, either.

Pros

  • No need to pick up a heavy jug
  • Quick to boil and energy-efficient
  • Easy to use, fill and maintain

Cons

  • Despite the larger capacity, some found it needed refilling more often

Best kettle for easy cleaning

Breville Impressions Electric KettleCredit: Amazon

Not only do we love the elegant design of this kettle, but it's one that's been highly rated by reviewers. And, from the experience of using this kettle, we've found this one did a fantastic job of keeping our drinks limescale-free as well as being easy to clean.

A customer commented: "This is a stylish kettle with many surprising features that I love and will make me continue buying this brand again." Yes - we love the special features, which we cover a little later. Plus, it's ergonomic, suitable for lefties and right-handed folks as it "spins on the base". Function-wise, many reviews agree that it boils fast, "and you get a good controlled pour of water." Many customers were surprised by how much it holds - but, also is lightweight - which we love.

The kettle, available in five traditional kitchen appliance colours, has a lift-off lid and concealed heating element for easy cleaning. The limescale filter is removable and washable, and the quick boil prevents limescale from having the opportunity to develop. It's perfect for a busy household - who'd rather not spend a whole morning cleaning a kettle - and to get back to the important things.

Pros

  • Stylish
  • Quiet
  • Comfortable and easy to pour
  • Quick to boil
  • Easy to clean

Cons

  • Some reviewers thought it would be a metal kettle, but it's actually plastic

Best glass kettle for hard water

Russell Hobbs 21600-10 Illuminating Glass KettleCredit: Amazon
Price: $69.50

Easily prepare your favourite hot drinks with this Russell Hobbs 21600-10 Illuminating Glass Kettle. You’ll be able to keep all your guests’ mugs full with its 1.7-litre capacity, as it makes up to 7 hot drinks at once. You’ll never wait long for a cup of tea, as its 3000W output boils water in no time.

A customer commented that they've always "struggled with hard water and limescale build-up." And, this kettle suits them because it has a filter on it - so, they've "definitely noticed a difference when making hot drinks". Thanks to the filter, there's no lime grittiness at the bottom of your mug. Plus, the glass aspect of the little means you can keep a closer eye on lime build-up, which is a helpful feature. It takes out the guesswork - and ensures you're cleaning only when necessary. No wasted time, here.

They add: "I definitely wouldn't go back to a 'normal' kettle now. Glass is the way forward."

Plus, thanks to its 360-degree connection, it’s effortless to use, and with clever boil-dry protection, you won’t have to worry about damage if there’s not enough water inside either. This model's limescale filter improves the quality of your drinks, which is ideal for hard water areas. For a stylish and convenient pick for your kitchen, we love the Illuminating Russell Hobbs Glass Kettle. We'd recommend the clumsiest tea lovers around to avoid this kettle, as glass is very precious.

Pros

  • Feels like it takes up less space since you can see through it
  • You can see lime build-up, so you know when to clean
  • Energy efficient mode for a one-cup fill

Cons

  • Modern design won't suit everyone's tastes

Best for temperature control

Sage The Smart KettleCredit: Sage

With one-touch settings, you can alter the temperature between 80-100°C of this Sage The Smart Kettle — the handy instructions booklet comes with the best recommendations for a whole host of teas. Plus, to keep the limescale at bay, the kettle is fitted with a removable, washable limescale filter, a concealed heating element, and a large opening for easy cleaning. Limescale, be damned.

A customer commented that they chose this Sage Kettle to match their toaster and coffee machine. Why, not? Sage's appliances are smart, innovative and stylish. Plus, they "wanted the ability to heat at variable temperatures for different drinks" - which is a useful feature if you like to bounce between tea, coffee and more. As for general use, they said that it's "quiet, fairly fast to boil, easy to keep clean and doesn’t appear to show finger marks like some stainless steel products". If you don't like your appliances spiled by mucky fingerprints, this is a great pick. Plus, the Stay Warm function comes in handy when you're rushing around in a busy morning and finally find time to make that tea.

Not everybody wants a scalding cup of tea, especially if you like to drink it without waiting around. Plus, water that's too hot can affect the taste of certain teas too. Fortunately, the Sage Smart Kettle solves that problem - helping cups brew quickly and stay warm in busy households.

Pros

  • Ideal for tea drinkers
  • Easy to clean and quiet
  • Smart and intuitive design

Cons

  • Pricier than most other kettles

Best kettles for colour choices

Breville Lustra Electric KettleCredit: Amazon

Boasting an elegant, pearlescent design, you can choose from a range of six colours. This BREVILLE Lustra VKT065 Jug Kettle has a removable and cleanable limescale filter to catch limescale and keep it from leaving the spout. It's also easy to clean, too. The lid completely lifts off, and the heating element is concealed to prevent limescale from gripping on. Convenient and stylish.

A customer commented that they bought this kettle because they were "so impressed with the toaster". As for limescale, they said that it doesn’t get limescale build-up easily, despite the reviewer living in a hard water area, which is a plus. Though not the most stylish pick, it has a good capacity.

Reviewers also found that the coating on this kettle prevents drip and finger marks from being visible.

Pros

  • Easy to clean and lightweight
  • Quick to boil and spout pours well
  • Stylish with a choice of colours

Cons

  • Stock issues with some colours

Best kettle for style

Smeg KLF03 KettleCredit: John Lewis

For those in hard-water areas, the most beneficial is the concealed heating element and the stainless steel removable limescale filter — more robust than most — that'll remove any impurities before they enter your cup. The Smeg KLF03 Kettle is sure to make a statement in any kitchen.

A customer commented that the filter can "clean to stop any descaling, and in a hard water area, that's a bonus." It sure is. Finding dregs of lime in your tea is far from ideal. Though very stylish and retro, this model isn't just a pretty kettle. It's easy to wipe down and will filter out any scale.

This might be the most expensive kettle on our list, but you can't resist the iconic design of a Smeg appliance. Its beautiful design, available in a bunch of colours, is inspired by the retro-chic of the 1950s and comes with a range of practical features. This is ideal for those of us who adore nostalgia.

Pros

  • Sturdy design with a quick boil
  • Lovely design with plenty of colours
  • Easy to fill with water and pour

Cons

  • Some may not like the large branding across it

Best lightweight pick

Russell Hobbs Inspire Electric KettleCredit: Amazon

The easy-view water window of this Russell Hobbs 24361 Inspire Electric Fast Boil Kettle with boil illumination will help you hit the right mark, which is great for energy efficiency, too. The kettle includes a removable limescale filter and concealed heating element inside its sleek accented design.

A customer commented that they have "tried and tested many kettles over the past couple of years" Living in a hard water area, you may be used to limescale. This particular user double-filters the cold water before putting it in the kettle - as limescale is a problem. However, the kettle is easy to "clean inside and out" with a great handle for easy grip - which is ideal if you struggle with holding things.

If you find yourself rushed off your feet or need that morning cuppa urgently to feel more alive in the mornings, look no further. The Russell Hobbs Inspire Kettle can boil a cup of water in just 45 seconds.

Pros

  • It looks more expensive than it is
  • Quick boils and quite lightweight
  • Easy to use and clean

Cons

  • Some reported it leaves a plastic taste

What to look for in the best kettles for hard water

Filtration

Filtration is important for stopping any limescale residue from entering your drink — no one likes to see those flakes floating in your tea or coffee! There are two key filtration methods available: reusable mesh filters and cartridge filter technology.

Reusable, mesh, anti-limescale filters are the most cost-effective option. The filter sits near the spout and stops the limescale from escaping. It can be removed, cleaned, and reused with any build-up.

Cartridge filter technology is more advanced and works to eliminate the build-up of limescale in the kettle, too, as it'll filter and boil at the same time. This option is great if you prefer the taste of soft water, filtered water in general, or are looking for crystal clear water that is cleansed of any impurities.

Hannah at Russell Hobbs says that a filter cartridge "helps to reduce limescale build-up to ensure cleaner, clearer and better tasting tea and coffee".

While you may be guaranteed a cleaner, clearer cuppa, it's worth considering that the cartridges will come with a higher cost for replacement and the built-in filtration system will reduce the water capacity of your kettle. You're likely to get fewer cups out of one boil, which might mean running the kettle multiple times for larger, tea-loving families.

Pouring kettle
©Getty Images

Concealed heating element

Having an exposed heating element in the body of your kettle can make cleaning it more difficult as you'll have to try to navigate around it to remove limescale residue. As the heating element isn't removable, this could be a tricky job for any super stubborn limescale. An exposed heating element is also likely to collect limescale easily, which can increase the build-up of limescale residue in your kettle.

By choosing a kettle with a hidden heating element, the residue won't have extra components to grip, helping to reduce any build-up.

Electric kettle

Electric kettles typically boil quicker than stove-top kettles, which gives the limescale less opportunity to form. We've also found that in a lot of anti-limescale electric kettles, they'll come with a quick boil to help reduce this further, as well as deliver your cup of tea or coffee in no time at all! If you're after a quiet kettle, an electric kettle is the best for this. Plus, you can normally get an electric kettle, and toaster setsthat look the same and match the rest of your kitchen.

We’ve listed some great kettles you can buy with a mix of filtration options to suit your budgets and needs.

Kettle test
Testing the Breville Impressions Electric Kettle ©Yours

FAQs

What is hard water?

Sixty per cent of the UK has hard water, but what exactly is it?

Hard water is water that has "trickled through layers of limestone, chalk or rock underground", says Wessex Water. Consequently, the water has a "high mineral content" with plenty of calcium and magnesium. If you see chalky residue in your coffee cup, it's likely to be limescale.

In comparison, soft water doesn't have these collected minerals as the water has percolated through less porous, metamorphic rocks without dissolving the chemical compounds.

Though known to contribute to bone health, hard water does come with a few problems, namely it can cause a build-up of limescale on taps, shower heads and other appliances.

You're more likely to find soft water in Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland, as well as hard water across the UK, especially in the southeast of England.

Check your water hardness with Wessex Water's Postcode Checker.

Is it safe to use a kettle with limescale?

Yes, it's perfectly safe for you, and in fact, research suggests that it could be good for you with the heightened mineral levels helping to fulfil your calcium and magnesium intake. Good levels of calcium can help promote strong bones, regulate muscle contractions and make sure your blood clots normally.

While it might be safe for you, it isn't such good news for your kettle. Limescale build-up can reduce the lifespan of your kettle, which is why it's important to clean and descale regularly to get the most from your appliance.

How do I reduce water hardness?

There are a few ways to soften water for the longevity of your appliances, says Wessex Water:

Install a domestic water softener to your home using an approved supplier. Traditionally, water softeners use salt blocks to exchange hard water's calcium and magnesium for sodium (salt). But, your kitchen tap should be left unsoftened, says Wessex Water, for drinking and food prep.

Water conditioners "alter the nature of the hardness minerals which form hard scale when the water is heated". Conditioners don't change the chemical content of the water, unlike water softeners, but they reduce visible limescale build-up in your home with a temporary fix.

How to clean your kettle?

Removing limescale from your kettle will ensure your kettle's longevity and performance, says Hannah at Russell Hobbs. After all, limescale can actually impact your bills by reducing its energy efficiency. Plus, limescale makes your kettle noisier as the rougher surface "will increase the ‘bubble popping’ that you hear during boiling," she adds. So, what can we do to prevent it?

Well, Hannah recommends cleaning your kettle at least once a month to reduce build-up. Your purchase should have an anti-scale filter, which will "help prevent limescale deposits from pouring into your cup or pan". As effective as these are, they won't prevent build-up.

Regularly descale your kettle - to keep your kettle at its best.

Hannah recommends Russell Hobbs' Descaler, which is safe to use with kettles and coffee machines. Without a descaler, limescale could "shorten the life of your appliance" - so, it's important to take ten minutes to save money. They recommend mixing a descaler with water in your kettle, allowing it to boil. Let it sit for a few minutes, empty and rinse twice - so easy.

Or, why not try a homemade mixture of white vinegar and water? Nick Small, small appliances expert at AO.com suggests leaving "the mixture in the kettle overnight, empty in the morning, and pop on a full kettle of water, bringing it to a boil and then emptying it again”.

To de-scale your kettle with safe, natural ingredients that are super low cost, follow the advice in this video on how to clean a kettle, and it'll be sparkling again in no time.

Eleanor Weaver is the Deputy Homes & Garden Product Editor for Yours, specialising in home décor, furnishings and appliances. Having worked commercially on Yours magazine and Yours.co.uk for the past six years, she's previously hosted Yours Live events and loves looking for home inspiration online.

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