Kettle Facts: Model TDB-8 (120 Volt)

Kettle Facts: Model TDB-8 (120 Volt)

Manufactured by Groen exclusively for Calico, the water-jacketed stainless steel kettle uses a motor-driven mixer and thermostatically controlled electric heater for uniform mixing and heating.

Here’s what you need to know about:

Electrical requirements
Water level requirements
Cleaning and sanitizing
Winter care



Electrical requirements. The kettle uses 120 volts on a dedicated 20-ampere circuit. You’ll need a dedicated 15 ampere, 120-volt outlet at the kettle location and 12-gauge wiring to the existing outlet. Ask your electrician to change the circuit breaker to 20 amperes and the outlet to a Leviton on Hubbell #5361 single outlet. If you don’t already have the correct wiring, then your electrician should install a dedicated 20-ampere circuit and a Leviton or Hubbell single outlet.

The plug furnished with the kettle is a Hubbell #5366 (NEMA 5-20P) and is affixed either to a three or six foot power cord. The outlet should be located within 30 inches of the kettle location. Otherwise, you’ll need an extension cord of proper amperage.

Water level requirements. You may need to replenish the water periodically due to water evaporation or other factors. That’s especially important if you use the kettle frequently, because there’s a greater possibility of water loss caused by evaporation. As a result, you’ll need to be even more vigilant in checking the water level.

Should the level drop below the mid-point of the sight glass, or if the kettle jacket is drained for any reason, the water should be replaced with distilled water only. The procedure is as follows:

  1. Make sure the kettle is unplugged and cool to the touch
  2. Unscrew the fill plug, which is screwed into the elbow at the rear of the kettle, from the metal elbow at the rear of the kettle.

    Note: The fill plug has four 1/8 inch diameter holes drilled in it for proper venting. These holes must be kept free of debris in order to avoid unsafe pressure from building up within the water jacket.
  3. Add distilled water through the metal elbow until the water level is at the mid-point of the sight glass.

    Note: Since the water you’re adding must raise the level in the entire kettle jacket, a substantial amount of water is needed to make a small change in the level. For a kettle that has been drained completely, we recommend you have on hand at least 3 gallons of distilled water in order to add the necessary 11 quarts required to reach the mid-point of the sight glass.
  4. Replace the plug in the metal elbow upon completion.

    Note: If you misplace the fill plug, it must be replaced with a plug that has four 1/8 inch diameter holes drilled in it for proper venting. Contact Calico’s Customer Service Department at (800) 645-5345 for a replacement.
  5. Tilt the kettle back and forth, while adding the distilled water, to eliminate any trapped bubbles in the sight glass.

Cleaning and sanitizing. Clean the external and internal surfaces of the kettle daily. And remember to check its sides and back. Cleaning the food contact surfaces as soon as possible after use will make the task easier. Remember: Keep water and sanitizing solutions away from controls and electrical connections. And avoid direct contact with hot surfaces.

  1. Pour two buckets of water using your Calico-supplied large bucket (11 quarts) into the kettle and bring the water level to just over the top of the shorter agitator arm (about 2 ½ inches from the rim). Be careful not to pour the water on top of the agitator, at its center, as the water could migrate down the steel tubing on which the agitator rotates.
  2. Turn the heat on the thermostat to high and turn on the mixer for 15 minutes.
  3. Turn off the kettle’s heat and mixer. Tilt the kettle and pour the water out using the 11 quart bucket. (Caution: water will be hot). Then use the Calico-supplied smaller bucket (5 quarts) to remove the remaining water. Remove the agitator and wash it and all utensils. To remove stuck-on material, use a brush, sponge, cloth or rubber scraper. With a clean sponge or damp paper towels, wipe off any residue on the inside of the kettle.

    Note: never use metal tools or other abrasive products that might scratch the surface. Scratches make the surface harder to clean and provide places for bacteria to grow. Also, don’t use steel wool which may leave particles in the surface and cause corrosion and pitting.
  4. After rinsing the kettle, you may need to sanitize the kettle using chemicals, if required by your local health department. Use a solution equivalent to one that supplies 200 parts per million available chlorine, which may be available through your local sanitary supply vendor. (One suggested sanitizer is Klenzade XY-12 from ECOLAB). Follow the supplier’s instructions carefully and apply the sanitizer after the unit has been cleaned. Rinse off the sanitizer thoroughly.  Remember: Never leave a chlorine sanitizer in contact with stainless steel surfaces longer than 30 minutes.

    Most sanitizing solutions are harmful to the skin, eyes and mucous membranes. Wear rubber gloves and goggles or a face shield.
  5. Wipe down the entire exterior of the kettle to eliminate any powder that might have settled there. At night, consider covering the kettle with a cloth or plastic bag. If you have any hard water white stains on the exterior of the kettle, they may be removed by using Noxon or Flitz metal polishing creams.

Winter care. Kettle care during the winter requires special steps, especially if you plan to store it in freezing temperatures.

Be sure to drain the water (approximately 11 quarts) from the jacket of the kettle. Then follow these instructions:

  1. Remove the fill plug at the rear of the kettle.
  2. Turn the kettle upside down until all the water is drained.
  3. After draining the kettle, affix a large note reminding you to add 11 quarts of distilled water before using it in the Spring. Adding the proper amount of distilled water will prevent damage to the heating element.

    Note: The jacket is full when the water is at the mid-point in the sight glass with the kettle at room temperature. For more information about proper filling technique, refer to our section discussing water level requirements.