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Whistling Kettle Review - Oxo Good Grips Uplift Teakettle

By Edited Apr 17, 2016 0 0

The Oxo whistling kettle has a few features that no other competing kettle possesses. For one thing, the handle is non-slip, ergonomic and comfortable to hold. The spout cap which houses the whistle automatically opens up when you want to pour out the hot water. There is a wide opening for you to refill or clean the kettle (compare this to the Revere copper whistling kettle which does NOT have an opening at all). It is also constructed sturdily, especially when you compare it to its main competitors, the Medelco whistling kettle (made of glass), the newer models of the Farberware Tiburon whistling kettle (made from stamped sheet metal) or Revere copper bottomed whistling kettle (now made in China using 25% less metal than in the past).

Unlike most other kettles, the Oxo Good Grips Uplift teakettle comes in both the normal stainless steel as well as enamelled metal with many different colors. Those with designer kitchens will appreciate the wide choice of colors available to them. In addition to that, this whistling kettle is a rather new design. Currently, however, it comes in only one size - 2-quarts. Those who need to boil more water and those who need to boil less water are both out of luck.

While the Oxo whistling kettle has well thought out features, there are still many problems in the execution. For one thing, the handle which allows the spout to be automatically opened is mechanically complex and prone to failure. Many customers complain that the main hinge quickly becomes loose and they need to frequently tighten it up again with a screwdriver.

Another frequent complaint is the lid of the opening. Depending on which batch of Oxo whistling kettles you bought, it is either too tight or too loose. On the plus side, this is NOT due to quality control problems. On the minus side, this is because the Oxo design team has not decided on what they want. Historically, the original lid was loose so that owners could easily open it for refilling and cleaning. Unfortunately there were many complaints of the lid falling off (because of its slanted angle) or letting steam escape (making the whistle unreliable and scalding the owner's hand when carrying the kettle or pouring it). The new batches of Oxo kettles seem to be going the opposite extreme in making the lid very tight.

The third major complaint about Oxo whistling kettles is the whistle. The internal design of the whistle has changed many times. The original whistle sounded like a stuck car horn and was very unreliable, frequently not working at all. Then it changed to a low pitched humming sound similar to a train whistle. This started out softly then gradually becomes louder. The train whistle is by far the most popular sound. Different batches of whistles have also been compared to the harmonica and fog horn. The latest batches of whistling kettles have been said to sound rather shrill. The whistles of the later Oxo kettles are more reliable than the first early batches, but are still prone to random failure.

Despite the solid construction of this whistling kettle, the quality of the stainless steel and/or the enamelled steel seems problematic. Like the new Revere whistling kettles, a number of Oxo whistling kettles have been returned or thrown away due to problems with rust or the enamel flaking away.

While the Oxo name and customer service remains good, their Good Grips Uplift whistling kettle needs more work. And it would help if their design team makes up its mind about how they want the lid and the whistle to behave. Unfortunately the list price of around $70 and the fact that many Oxo teakettles fail to give more than a year of service (before either the handle fails or whistle fails or it starts rusting) makes it a dud. If I were going to buy a disposable kettle that is going to fail in just a year, I would prefer to pay $15 for a cheap Medelco glass whistling kettle that will never rust.



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