How to Descale a Kettle with Bicarbonate of Soda

How to Descale a Kettle with Bicarbonate of Soda

Here in the UK, we tend to make good use of our kettles every day and we are particularly famous for the amount of tea that we consume. This constant use of our kettles means that limescale has a much higher chance of building up quickly. 

Limescale is the chalky residue that can often be seen on the inside of a kettle, especially in areas with particularly hard water. It is caused by a higher concentration of calcium and magnesium in these areas. 

It may be a nuisance when you see it accumulating in your kettle yet again, but if you follow this trusty bicarbonate of soda cleaning method, you’ll be able to remove it quickly and easily. 

How to Use Bicarbonate of Soda to Quickly Remove Limescale

How to Descale a Kettle with Bicarbonate of Soda

The most effective way to remove limescale from your kettle is to mix a teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda with around two cups of water. Pour the mixture into your kettle before boiling the kettle several times. 

Once the mixture has been boiling for about 15 minutes leave it to cool for another 15 minutes. Rinse out the kettle with cold water and use a dry cloth or a sponge to wipe down the inside and remove any traces of the limescale that may remain. 

For a more intense reaction, you can try to add white vinegar to the mixture. The vinegar will react to the bicarbonate of soda and the fizzy solution should quickly eradicate any traces of limescale in your kettle. 

Once the reaction has taken place, boil the kettle and then leave it for an hour to cool. Do this with the kettle filled to the three-quarter point rather than to the top. Rinse it out with water a few times to remove any residue and then it should be safe to use as normal. 


A Few Alternative Methods

alternative methods to Descale a Kettle

If you notice that the bicarbonate of soda method is not as effective on your kettle, there are a couple of other household products you can try.

1. Vinegar

Vinegar is a tried-and-tested method for household cleaning and limescale is no exception. Fill your kettle to the three-quarter line with equal amounts of water and white vinegar before boiling it and leaving it to cool. 

Once cooled, drain the water and wipe down the insides to be sure any residue is gone. Rinse your kettle a few times before boiling again to ensure any lingering vinegar taste will be removed. 

2. Coca-Cola

Coca-Cola contains phosphoric acid which can easily remove any traces of limescale in your kettle. It sounds risky, but simply boil your kettle with Coca-Cola in it and then leave it for thirty minutes before draining it. 

Clean out the inside to remove traces of the sweetness but the limescale should be eradicated. 



It is very important to make sure that you are descaling your kettle as often as you can as if the limescale deposits become too heavy, they could begin to corrode the heating element of your kettle, which may result in you having to replace the whole thing. 

If you want to prevent limescale from building up in your kettle, be sure not to overfill your kettle beyond what you use. Leaving water standing in the kettle for long periods of time will cause the limescale to gather. 

Following the simple methods above will ensure you have a clean and shiny kettle so that you are free to make as many cosy cups of tea as you want.