Why Do Electric Kettles Leak? Answered 

A leaking electric kettle makes a mess and can be dangerous. Here are some possible reasons why do electric kettles leak and ways to fix them.

Electric kettles come in handy, especially when you’re making your cup of coffee or tea at home or even at your office. They automatically shut down when the water reaches boiling point. Read more on How Does A Cordless Electric Kettle Work?

But then, a leaking electric kettle can be problematic – it will spill water. Since water is a great conductor of electricity, you can get electrocuted. So, why do electric kettles leak? Are there any ways to fix them? Let’s find out.

Why Your Electric Kettle Is Leaking Water

1. There’s An Opening In The Electric Kettle’s Casing

Most electric kettles are plastic material or stainless steel. However, electric kettles made with plastic material are not as strong as stainless steel and can easily crack; it can happen when you drop them. 

It’s also possible that the seal portion between the stainless steel and the plastic case may fail. As a result, water may leak through the opening. Stop using your electric kettle and contact the manufacturer for a replacement when this happens.

2. The Electric Kettle Is Overfull

So, you may be wondering, “How do I know if my electric kettle is overfull?” Electric kettles that are overfull tend to dribble when you pour water. If your electric kettle does not leak in any other way but seems to rain on everything as you pour, the issue here could be as simple as too much water

Most electric kettles can hold 1.5 liters or 1.7 liters of water, usually marked on their body. You can also find this information on the box and manual.

3. Limescale Build-Up

Limescale Build-Up
When limescale builds up, the deposits might push against the seals that keep the kettle from leaking

People living in areas with hard water are usually the ones experiencing this, as limescale build-up is due to calcium. When limescale builds up, the deposits might push against the seals that keep the kettle from leaking – water starts to drip out when the seal is pushed too far. You can notice this near the see-through indicators that show your electric kettle’s water level. 

So, how can you fix this problem? The answer is pretty simple – through descaling.

Sometimes, descaling can stop your electric kettle from dripping. However, if the limescale deposits are particularly severe or the sealant has already been damaged, you may need to descale and reseal your electric kettle. At this point, many people prefer to buy a new one. 

How To Fix A Leaking Electric Kettle 

1. Fixing A Crack Or Opening In The Electric Kettle’s Casing

Sometimes, the damage is noticeable. However, even a small crack or opening in the electric kettle’s casing can cause it to leak. Either way, you can solve this with the right type of sealant. 

Not all sealants are suitable; the best choice for you is the silicone sealant. Additionally, it should be food-contact safe, approved by the FDA, and heat resistant. You can try Gorilla Waterproof Caulk & Seal 100% Silicone Sealant

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04/12/2024 07:59 am GMT

Most products of this kind come with instructions, but if it’s not very clear how you can fix an electric kettle, you can follow these steps.

  • Unplug your electric kettle.
  • Let your electric kettle dry entirely for one to two days.
  • Apply the silicone sealant on the crack or outside the electric kettle only.
  • Allow the silicone sealant to set before using your electric kettle.

2. Fixing The Overfilling Problem

Fixing the overfilling problem
Just make sure that the water does not cross the fill line when filling your kettle

Water expansion can cause your electric kettle to spill water all over the place when it heats up. The solution to this problem is quite simple – just make sure that the water does not cross the fill line when filling your kettle. Always check your kettle before placing it on the base; if the water exceeds the fill line, you have to pour some of it away. 

3. Fixing The Limescale Build-Up

Descaling an electric kettle is very simple. If you have vinegar in your pantry, you’re good to go. 

You can use white or brown vinegar to descale your electric kettle. Just make sure that the vinegar is 100% natural. 

  • Dilute the vinegar with water with a 1:1 ratio. 
  • Pour the vinegar solution into your electric kettle to cover the limescale.
  • Turn your electric kettle on, and allow it to boil.
  • Throw away the solution, and rinse your electric kettle thoroughly until the vinegar smell is gone.
  • Wipe the limescale away using a cloth.

If the limescale is severe, make the vinegar solution, and add just enough to cover it. You do not have to turn on the kettle this time, just leave it overnight and rinse it thoroughly in the morning. You should then be able to wipe the limescale away using a cloth. 

If these methods still do not work for you, maybe it’s time to buy a new electric kettle. For this, you can read our guide on What’s The Best Electric Kettle For Your Home Kitchen?

Oh and if you own a coffee maker, learn why coffee makers leak.


  • Aisling O'Connor

    Aisling is an Irish food and drinks writer and journalist fueled by coffee and herbal tea. She followed up her journalism degree with nutrition studies. Find Aisling on LinkedIn.