Instant Pots have become one of the most popular kitchen appliances in recent years, with millions of households embracing the versatility and convenience of electric multi-cookers. With their ability to pressure cook, slow cook, sauté, steam, and more, Instant Pots have changed the way many people cook. But how long can you expect your Instant Pot to last before needing to be replaced? Here’s a look at the lifespan and durability of Instant Pot electric pressure cookers.
What Impacts Instant Pot Lifespan?
There are several factors that can impact how long your Instant Pot lasts:
- Usage frequency – The more often you use your Instant Pot, the faster its components will wear out.
- Care and maintenance – Following the manufacturer’s cleaning and care instructions can maximize lifespan.
- Build quality – Instant Pot models with sturdy stainless steel construction tend to be more durable.
- Age – The number of years since your Instant Pot was manufactured affects longevity.
- Model – Some Instant Pot models have longer lifespans than others.
By choosing a high-quality model, properly caring for your Instant Pot, and not overusing it, you can expect many years of service. But even with reasonable care, Instant Pots do eventually wear out or break.
How Long Do Instant Pot Parts Last?
Let’s take a closer look at the typical lifespan of key Instant Pot components:
The stainless steel inner pot is one of the most durable Instant Pot parts. With proper care, the inner pot can last 5 years or longer before signs of wear appear. Avoid using harsh scouring pads or abrasive cleaners on the inner pot, as they can damage the polished cooking surface over time. Minor cosmetic scratches are normal, but deep scratches or corrosion indicate it’s time to replace the inner pot.
Silicone sealing rings need to be replaced every 1-2 years with regular use. Over time, sealing rings can become warped, develop cracks, or fail to seal properly. Replacement sealing rings are inexpensive and available from the Instant Pot website or Amazon. Avoid exposing the sealing ring to oil or acidic foods for too long, as this speeds deterioration.
The pressure release valve is a small but crucial part that allows steam to escape once cooking is complete. Pressure valves typically last 3-4 years before needing replacement. Signs it’s time for a new one include failure to seal properly, steam leaks around the valve, or failure to release pressure. Generic replacement valves are available online for all Instant Pot models.
Other parts like the lid, control panel and internal wiring may need to be replaced every 4-6 years with frequent use. Cracks in the lid around the sealing ring, unresponsive buttons, faulty electronics, or overheating are signs that replacement parts may be needed. Getting an official replacement lid or control panel from Instant Pot is recommended over third-party parts.
Typical Instant Pot Lifespans
Taking into account the average lifespan of each component, here are the typical total lifespans for Instant Pot models:
|Instant Pot Model||Expected Lifespan (in years)|
|Smart Wifi||4-6 years|
|Duo Plus||5-7 years|
|Duo Crisp||5-7 years|
|Duo Evo Plus||6-8 years|
As you can see, typical lifespan ranges from 3-8 years depending on the model. The newest models like the Duo Evo Plus are built with higher quality materials and technology to improve longevity. Premium stainless steel models also tend to outlast basic models like the Lux.
Factors That Shorten Instant Pot Lifespan
There are a few key things that can shorten the lifespan of your Instant Pot and have it breaking down earlier than expected:
- Pressurizing frequently – The repeated high pressures strains components.
- Not cleaning properly – Food buildup and mineral deposits from water wear out parts faster.
- Using abrasive scouring pads – These scratch and damage the inner pot over time.
- Running it empty – Operating it without water can overheat and damage internal parts.
- Letting it overheat – Burnt food residue coats and warps the inner pot.
- Exposing sealing ring to oil – The oil makes it deteriorate and warp faster.
Avoiding these damaging practices and taking care of your Instant Pot will help it last for many years of regular cooking.
Factors That Extend Instant Pot Lifespan
You can maximize the lifespan of your Instant Pot by:
- Hand washing – Gently wash parts by hand instead of the dishwasher.
- Monthly inspections – Check for damaged cords, leaks, warping.
- Proper storage – Store in a clean, dry place when not in use.
- Replacing consumables – Swap out sealing rings, valves when needed.
- Descale regularly – Use descaler to remove mineral deposits.
- Avoid overfilling – Don’t go over max fill lines.
- Let pressure release – Always do a natural release before opening lid.
Following Instant Pot’s care and usage tips will keep it working like new for as long as possible.
When to Replace Your Instant Pot
Even with proper maintenance, Instant Pots won’t last forever. Here are some signs it may be time to replace your Instant Pot:
- Pot has deep scratches, corrosion, or pitting
- Sealing ring no longer seals or has visible damage
- Pressure valve leaks steam or won’t release pressure
- Buttons and display are unresponsive or faulty
- Difficulty maintaining pressure during cooking
- Cooking times are much longer than they used to be
- Lid, base, or pot are warped and don’t sit flat
- Burning or electrical smells while in use
Once an Instant Pot reaches this point of decline, it’s usually more cost-effective to purchase a new one. Basic models like the Instant Pot Duo are very reasonably priced under $100.
Can an Instant Pot Last 10 Years or Longer?
It’s rare, but some Instant Pots do keep working for 10 years or longer. This is more likely with higher-end stainless steel models that are well cared for and only used occasionally. The key factors are:
- Premium build quality
- Infrequent use
- Gentle cleaning and maintenance
- No damage from drops or impacts
- Replacing parts like sealing rings and valves
With light use of 1-2 times per week and excellent care, some Instant Pots make it to the 10 year mark before needing replacement. But for most people who use them multiple times per week, the realistic lifespan is 4-8 years.
How to Make Your Instant Pot Last
Follow these tips to maximize the lifespan of your Instant Pot:
- Hand wash gently – no abrasive scouring pads
- Use non-abrasive cleaners like baking soda
- Avoid acidic foods contacting pot for prolonged periods
- Descale every 3-6 months to prevent mineral buildup
- Replace sealing ring every 1-2 years
- Store in a clean, dry location when not in use
- Don’t overload pot – stay under max fill lines
- Let pressure release naturally before opening lid
- Unplug when not in use to prevent electrical issues
- Inspect periodically for any leaks, cracks or damage
- Avoid pressure cooking more than once per day
With regular maintenance and avoiding misuse, an Instant Pot can realistically be expected to last 5-8 years for the average home cook before needing replacement.
Most Instant Pots have a lifespan of 4-8 years with regular kitchen use. Factors that impact longevity include usage frequency, care, quality of materials, and age of the appliance. Avoiding misuse like overheating and pressure cooking too frequently can maximize the lifespan of your Instant Pot. With proper maintenance and care, it’s possible but rare for some Instant Pots to keep working reliably for 10 years or longer. But for most home cooks, the average Instant Pot will last about 5-7 years before parts like the sealing ring, valves and inner pot need replacing.