How Fast Do Electric Kettles Boil Water?

The article will answer the question, “how fast do electric kettles boil water?” and give you some insightful tips to help you buy the best kettle for home use.

How fast do electric kettles boil water?
Higher wattage gives the kettle more power, meaning it can heat the water faster

There are a few factors when it comes to how fast an electric kettle boils water. Higher wattage gives the kettle more power, meaning it can heat the water faster.

You also need to take a look at how much water you have in it. Less water takes less time to boil. I checked my 1.5-liter kettle (0.3 gallons), and it takes about three to four minutes to boil a full kettle.

The speed varies based on capacity, brand, and age, but in general, you could be waiting up to four to five and a half minutes for an electric kettle to boil water. Read on to learn more about how electric kettles work, if it’s better than a water boiler, and my tips to help you choose the best electric kettles for home use.

How Electric Kettles Work

An electric kettle comes with a metal coil inside. The coil is usually made from a heating element such as nichrome, nickel, and chromium.

Those are the best materials that allow electrical energy to travel from the outlet to the metal core at the base of the kettle, which converts to heat and warms up cold water. All electric kettles must come with a thermostat that stops the kettle from boiling once the water reaches the right temperature.

Water Boilers Vs. Electric Kettles: Which One Is More Efficient?

An electric kettle is a small, convenient appliance ideal for home use. It’s usually smaller than a water boiler. My mom has invested in a huge water boiler for her coffee shop as she needs to constantly make coffee and keep the water hot all the time for customers.

In terms of costs, a water boiler may cost less to keep the water hot for a longer time. Meanwhile, an electric kettle needs refilling and boiling over and over again.

That being said, boilers are more common in cafeterias, coffee shops, or canteens, as they allow them to make lots of beverages a day. Since most water boilers are made for commercial use, they tend to last longer.

Meanwhile, the heating elements inside the electric kettles need extra care as they’re not as durable. Chances are you need to invest in a new kettle after a couple of years.

How Fast Do Electric Kettles Boil Water Than A Stovetop Kettle

When heating the same amount of water, an electric kettle boils faster than a stovetop kettle. You can see that the mass of the kettle is often much smaller compared to the stovetop kettle. 

Electric Kettle And Tea
The mass of the Electric kettle is often much smaller compared to stovetop kettle

The electric current is pumped straight into the coil that heats the water instantly, meaning a majority of the heat generated in the element goes directly into the water. Meanwhile, the heat coming from your stove has many directions to go into, which include the plate and the exterior of the kettle before actually heating the water content inside. Other than that, the radiant heat that goes into the environment around the stovetop kettle also means it takes longer to boil water than an electric one.

What About A Water Heater?

I only recommend using a water heater for tea or coffee if you’re running out of time because you have to think about the taste it delivers at the end. If you take the hot water straight out of a water heater, it may end up with a metallic taste since the water’s been in the tube for a while. Therefore, you don’t want to use the heated water from this source for cooking or making tea and coffee at home. 

How Long Does An Electric Kettle Keep Water Hot?

Every kettle varies. Some are insulated, while others are not. I checked mine, and it stayed hot for about half an hour to forty-five minutes after boiling.

The average time electric kettles keep water hot seems to be 30 minutes to an hour.

It cools down slowly but shouldn’t be too fast if you keep the lid closed and do not pour it out. However, you also need to consider how cold the kitchen is or how much water the kettle contains.

An electric kettle is designed to keep the water hot even minutes after it’s boiled. It uses a heating element that’s connected to a large electric current and turns electricity into heat. The coil will expand in opposite directions during the heating process; and then will push a lever to break the circuit once the right temperature is reached.

Many kettles have a keep-warm feature that prevents freshly boiled water from dropping in temperature, but this isn’t a default feature of all kettles.

Things To Look For When Buying An Electric Kettle


Wattage plays a role in boiling time. Not all models have the same wattage. In today’s market, you can find an average electric kettle that runs on 750 watts as well as a higher-performance item with 1500 watts.

Other than that, a large-capacity kettle usually comes with more power to heat a bigger volume of water compared to a smaller-size kettle. While bigger kettles cost more, this is more efficient than boiling a smaller kettle over and over for the same amount of water. 


For me, a kettle that contains 1.5 liters of water works well. However, if you need a large kettle to cook or make tea and coffee for many people at the same time, then a 1.8-liter or 0.47-gallon to 2-liter kettle or 0.52-gallon should do the trick. Meanwhile, you may find some even smaller electric kettles that can only hold 0.5 liters or 0.13 gallons.

Read more Why do Electric kettles have a minimum water level

Water Temperature Settings

While most kettles come with one button, you may find some other models that can make lukewarm water other than just boiling. The reason why some people choose to have a lukewarm function is that they don’t need boiled water to make tea or coffee but a warm cup of water for other purposes. This handy setting allows them to drink the water right away without waiting for it to drop to room temperature.

High-Quality Construction

Invest in a well-built, sturdy material that can stay with you as long as possible. It also needs to handle constant heating and cooling time and again, given everyday use. I like electric kettles that come with a water level measurement, so I don’t overfill them.

Man holding electric kettle
Electric kettles come with a water level measurement

It’s also important they come with strong insulation and a sturdy handle for safety concerns.

Some kettles seem to work well, but the lid comes off easily after a few months. So, make sure you have a closer look at the lid before purchasing. If you buy a kettle with a stainless steel body, make sure the lid is made from a different material so you don’t get burnt when opening it.


  • Oanh Nguyen

    Born and raised by a traditional mama-barista, Oanh is a typical Viet coffee aficionado who would spend her entire precious Sunday showing you how to categorize coffee beans just by the looks and smells. She enjoys writing about everything drinks-related while sipping her favorite rosebud tea. Find Oanh on LinkedIn.