Can an Instant Pot Explode? 4 Potential Causes (Updated 2024)

Can an Instant Pot Explode

You might wonder what damages an instant pot can cause. Well, this article will answer your question “can an instant pot explode?” Read on.

Although instant pots come equipped with safety features, several instances of instant pot explosion have been recorded. These have resulted in severe injuries to people and damage to property.

When using an instant pot, you need to understand its functions and take precautions to prevent any accidents. You can cook your favorite meals quickly in an instant pot. It does, however, require sufficient attention.

What Can Cause an Instant Pot to Explode

Can an Instant Pot Explode

Even with built-in safety functions, instant pots have exploded. So, let’s discuss how and why this happens.

The list below covers possible causes of an exploding instant pot.

1. Overfilling the Instant Pot Past Its Maximum Capacity

If you fill an instant pot past its maximum capacity, any food that expands when cooking can clog or block the steam-releasing valves, causing over-pressurization and an explosion.

People have a tendency to overfill the instant pot. This is a common cause of instant pot explosions.

2. Blocked Steam Release Valves

Just as in the above situation, blocking the steam release valves in any way could prevent the pressure inside from being released. This can result in failure or malfunction. A variety of things can cause this blockage. 

The most common blockage is pieces of food getting stuck in the valve. Clean the steam release valves and other essential components in the instant pot regularly.

Ensure that the steam release valves are kept free from all blockages. If something covers the steam valve, such as a cloth or a dish towel, explosions may also occur.

3. Failure to Change the Sealing Ring

Every 12-16 months, you need to replace the sealing ring in your instant pot. You should clean it thoroughly as well.

Also, keep in mind that a defective sealing ring is also a common cause of explosions.

So, before operating your instant pot, visually inspect the sealing ring for any damage or debris. 

4. Neglecting the Instant Pot’s Manual and Instructions

The manual provides everything you should and should not do with your instant pot.

It includes all the instant pot’s features and the precautionary measures to follow when the appliance is in use.

Therefore, before using an instant pot, or any appliance for that matter, always read the manual mindfully.

Safety Features of an Instant Pot

Instant pots have several safety features designed to avoid any accidents which may lead to an explosion.

  • Anti-Blockage Vent

The anti-blockage vent keeps food and debris out of the vent, preventing trapped steam and excessive pressure.

  • Pressure Control

The automatic pressure controller maintains a safe pressure range. It is connected to a valve that releases steam from the pot if the pressure rises above 15.23 psi.

If the regulator fails, an instant pot has an extra safety mechanism if the pressure gets too high. The pot in the cooker shifts downwards. It creates a space between the lid and the inner pot, allowing the steam to exit. Then it completely blocks further heating.

  • Safety Lock Lid

The safety lock lid stops the instant pot from being inadvertently opened when pressurized. The lid also has a sensor that detects whether it is leaking, or if its position is inappropriate for cooking.

  • Temperature Control

Automatic temperature control regulates the temperature based on the food you are cooking in the instant pot.

The cooker even has a high-temperature sensor that prevents food from burning. If the internal temperature surpasses safe levels, there is a fuse that shuts off the electrical current.

What is an Instant Pot and How Does It Work?

Instant Pot

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Instant pots operate by sealing in the food as it heats. The release of steam into the enclosing increases the pressure, which speeds up the cooking time. 

To guarantee safety, you need to monitor the pressure to a certain degree. An instant pot will hold the pressure between 10.12 and 11.6 psi by using a pressure regulator.

When the instant pot’s pressure surpasses 15.25 psi, it should release the steam automatically.

The Bottom Line

It is important to exercise care when using an instant pot and follow all the precautionary steps mentioned previously.

There have been cases of instant pot explosions. However, you can prevent accidents by learning how to properly use your appliance.

You can save time and money using an instant pot for cooking. But remember not to overlook the safety measures.

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