Some people can’t believe their friends across the pond don’t use kettles regularly – but there’s a good reason for their decision to keep heating water on the stove
For many of us in the UK and other parts of the world, having an electric kettle plugged in in the kitchen is a part of everyday life.
But for people in America, it’s unusual to make use of a kettle – and the cultural difference has left many people baffled.
Love Island Australia host Sophie Monk recently sparked a debate when she detailed her experience with living in the US, as she said she was shocked when several shop assistants were confused by her request to buy a kettle.
Sophie lived in America for 10 years before returning to her native Australia, and couldn’t believe her eyes when she saw people boiling their water on the stove.
She told Yahoo Lifestyle Australia : “I was looking for a kettle, and they’re like (imitates a US accent), ‘Kettle?’ They don’t know what a kettle is!
“They don’t use them. They must heat water up on their stove. Yeah, no one has a kettle, which is crazy.”
Although the concept of not using a kettle is more than a little strange to us Brits, there’s actually a pretty simple explanation for the decision.
In America, homes only have a voltage of 100-127, while in the UK and other countries, the voltage in a house is around 230.
This means electric kettles in the US actually heat water more slowly than they do in the UK, so Americans haven’t bothered to invest in the appliances – choosing instead to boil on the stove or in the microwave.
The debate surrounding the use of kettles in America has been discussed for years, with Reddit posts in the past arguing that another reason Americans don’t use the appliance is because they don’t have the culture for tea drinking that we do, and many US families instead buy coffee machines.
Back in January, an Australian TikTok user expressed her shock at discovering the little known fact, and said it was “confusing” to her.
Many commenters at the time agreed with the woman, with some branding it “weird” and “strange”.