Life Hacks in Japan

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"Life in Japan 2023" How to choose an electric kettle and recommended manufacturers!

An electric kettle is an electrical appliance that boils water in a container by heating a metal plate at the bottom of the container with a heater. Despite its small size and cute appearance, it consumes over 1,000 W of power, making it comparable to a microwave oven. Be careful not to trip the breaker when using it with other appliances.


The capacity varies from 0.6 to 1.5 liters, depending on the product. The product introduction pages of some manufacturers indicate that the capacity should be selected according to the number of people in the household. However, a cup of water boils in about 1 minute, and a cup of noodles is 300ml, so even if you use a 0.6L electric kettle, you can boil water for up to 2 people at once.

In addition, as the capacity increases, the body also becomes heavier, and this may cause stress. The Human Life Engineering Research Center conducted an experiment in which subjects were asked to actually determine how much weight equipment, tools, and luggage they could hold in their daily lives by adjusting the weights with weights. The results were as follows. "In one hand, the "easy weight" was about 1 kg, the "weight that can be carried with a little effort" was about 1.5 kg to 2.0 kg, and the "weight that can be carried with as much effort as possible" was about 2.5 kg, with no significant differences between the sexes."
Sense of weight in your hand - Human Quality of Life Research Center [ HQL ] Database site

The weight of the electric kettle is roughly around 700g, as shown in the comparison chart that follows. This means that if the volume of water is within 300 ml, it is within the weight range you can comfortably hold. Considering the short time you will have to hold it, etc., this blog recommends 0.8L.



Temperature setting

Basically, as with conventional kettles, the temperature rises all the way to boiling, but some products allow you to set the temperature of the water. The appropriate temperature varies depending on what you drink, such as coffee or tea, so setting the temperature is an essential feature for a variety of uses.


Electric Kettle 0.8L 1200W Temperature Setting Function 50-100°C Keep Warm Prevent Empty Burning EGL-C1281 YAMAZEN


Thermal insulation

Electric kettles were not made for the purpose of keeping water boiling, but recently there are electric kettles with heat-retention functions.

Other Functions


Not only is there a triangular spout suitable for instant ramen noodles, which can be poured like a regular kettle, but there is also a narrow spout suitable for coffee drip, which can be poured in small quantities.


Three main types are available: plastic, stainless steel, and glass. Each has its own advantages: plastic is lightweight and inexpensive, while stainless steel is more durable. Among stainless steel products, those that are double-layered have high heat retention properties and will not burn you if you touch the body part. Glass, on the other hand, while stylish looking, is not recommended because it is vulnerable to shocks.


Other features, such as dry-burning prevention and automatic switch-off after boiling, are available on most products.

Product Comparison Chart

The following is a comparison of products with boiling-only functions as beginner products and those with temperature setting and warming functions as advanced products. (You can scroll to the right.)

Products for Beginners

Manufacturer Iris Oyama T-fal tiger ZOJIRUSHI siroca
model number IKEB-800-W Aprecia Plus 0.8L PCM-A081 CK-DB08 SEK-208
capacity 800ml 800ml 800ml 800ml 800ml
Power consumption 1,200W 1,250W 1,300W 1,300W 1,000W
Weight of main unit 700g 640g 720g 800g 850g*1
material plastic plastic stainless steel
(Dual structure)
stainless steel
(Dual structure)
spout triangle triangle triangle triangle triangle
Price*2 2,490 yen 4,100 yen 5,170 yen 5,780 yen 3,980 yen

*1...Weight including power plate.
*2...Price on Amazon as of April 24, 2023.



Advanced Products

Manufacturer T-fal Yamazen Iris Oyama siroca
model number Aprecia Control 0.8L EGL-C1281 IKE-C601T SK-D171
capacity 800ml 800ml 600ml 800ml
Power consumption 1,250W 1,200W 1,200W 900W
Weight of main unit 640g 900g*1 700g 595g
Temperature setting 8 steps 50 ~ 100°C
(in 1°C increments)

60 ~ 100°C
(in 5°C increments)

60 ~ 100°C
Thermal insulation
material plastic stainless steel stainless steel stainless steel
spout triangle narrow narrow narrow
Price*2 7,280 yen 8,480 yen 8,332 yen 8,979 yen

*1...Weight including power plate.
*2...Prices on Amazon as of April 24, 2023.


Products for Beginners

The double-layer construction to prevent hot water leakage in case of tipping over and to keep the main unit from getting hot are attractive from a safety standpoint. However, since I have never burned myself by knocking over the main unit or touching the main unit, I considered them lower on my priority list. As a result, we recommend Iris Oyama's IKEB-800-W for its large wattage, light weight, and low cost. For families with children and the elderly, we recommend Tiger's PCM-A081 for its safety features.


Advanced Products

For the price, we recommend T-fal's Aplasia Control 0.8L, but for frequent coffee and tea drinkers, we recommend Iris Oyama's IKE-C601T-HA with fine temperature settings and a narrow spout. It is made of heavy stainless steel and does not feel lived-in. Yamazen's product has a larger capacity and allows temperature settings in 1°C increments, but we considered its weight to be a bottleneck.

I hope the above is helpful.