Copper kettles offer a touch of old world charm. They have a practical use for boiling water, but antique copper kettles also make delightful collector's items. Buyers should consider the benefits and features of copper kettles, and learn how to care for them to ensure that they stay in good condition.
Benefits of Copper Kettles
Copper kettles conduct heat more efficiently than items made from many other materials, so water boils more evenly and rapidly. This means that copper kettles are often smaller than some vessels that hold heat for the same length of time. Copper kettles also cool faster, so cleaning up after using the kettle is safer because there is less risk of receiving a burn from the vessel.
Antique Copper Kettles
Antique copper kettles make a nice addition to any home. Many models feature hallmarks that help to identify the maker and year of manufacture. Buyers that would like a kettle to add to a collection should check for these signs of authenticity. Many vintage kettles also feature a sovereign's head, such as Queen Victoria, which signifies the payment of taxes.
Features of Copper Kettles
Many buyers enjoy whistling kettles that alert them when water begins to boil. Kettles with wood or other non-metallic handles prevent burns when removing kettles from a hob. To prevent copper toxicity, buyers should ensure that the kettle has a tin lining, or some other non-reactive metal. Buyers should consider the use of the kettle and choose an appropriate size. Large copper kettles can provide water for around 10 people, whereas small copper kettles are pretty ornaments.
Caring for a Copper Kettle
As a soft metal, copper tarnishes easily, which means that copper kettles require some maintenance. Buyers should avoid abrasive cleaners that cause scratches on the surface. There are several methods to clean a copper kettle. Using vinegar and salt reduces oxidation. First, rub salt on the kettle and then pour vinegar over it. Use a soft cloth to rub the mixture in, and then rinse the kettle in cold water and buff with a dry cloth. Lemons also clean copper kettles effectively. Slice a lemon in half and rub it onto the surface, and then rinse and polish the kettle. Tarnish remover helps if there are dull spots on the surface.