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how long does all-clad stainless cookware last?

jonathan Jan 20, 2005 02:34 PM

i'm thinking about purchasing some all-clad stainless cookware (fry pans, saucepans, etc)

my questions is, do these things really last a life time? or is 5 years a better estimation of how long they'll hold up


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  1. t
    Tom Meg RE: jonathan Jan 20, 2005 02:42 PM

    I can't imagine a much tougher pan. Unless you take a hammer to it, or leave it empty on a hot burner for hours and hours, it would be hard to really kill one. I've had some of mine for 10 years, and they perform as well as the first day I got them (and some of them were pre-owned).

    Link: http://meglioranza.com

    1 Reply
    1. re: Tom Meg
      Ollypay RE: Tom Meg Jan 20, 2005 04:57 PM

      Funny you should ask. I sauteed chicken livers this noon in my long-handled all-clad "spider", and as I was washing up, I thought what a faithful friend it had been for 25? 30? years. It's one of my favorite utensils...

    2. k
      Karl S. RE: jonathan Jan 20, 2005 03:10 PM

      The only better deal in terms of durability would be Le Creuset, because they'll replace worn pieces for free.

      But be warned that the Le Creuset roasting pan, if you are looking at it, is somewhat different than what you might want and has been the subject of threads in the past.

      1. j
        joe RE: jonathan Jan 20, 2005 03:40 PM

        We bought a stainless steel cookware set 35 years ago at a "home demo party". It doesn't have the heavy multi-layer bottom as the new ones do. We have had no problem other than the handles get loose but it is nothing that several turns w/ a screwdriver can't fix. That set cost me over $300 then and it was worth it. The set remains as the core of our cookware. I still buy "specialty" individual pieces both stainless and non-stainless as needed. Good luck......


        1. c
          chococat RE: jonathan Jan 20, 2005 03:46 PM

          All-clad stuff lasts forever except for the non-stick stuff-- The non-stick stuff lasts 3 years tops.

          8 Replies
          1. re: chococat
            Karl S. RE: chococat Jan 20, 2005 03:51 PM

            I've had mine for more than that and they are still working fine. You just shouldn't abuse non-stick the way you might a regular surface.

            1. re: chococat
              farmersdaughter RE: chococat Jan 20, 2005 05:10 PM

              I've had two All-Clad non stick pans for almost 7 years now. I treat them very well, and they are still pristine. I only use wooden or nylon utensils, I hand wash them very carefully so as not to damage the coating, and heat them up gradually if I'm not adding fat to the pan when I turn on the stove.

              1. re: chococat
                Jim Washburn RE: chococat Jan 20, 2005 07:12 PM

                Yeah, I bought an All-Clad non-stick frying pan about 5 years ago and have used it only for bacon and eggs, so no high heat, no metal utensils, gentle hand washing. Its non-stick property is totally shot. I do fix bacon and eggs nearly every day, but it just wasn't worth the cost. A few months ago I replaced it with a Tramontina pan I got at Sam's Club for $17.50. So far, so good. If it lasts only a year, it will be a better value than the All-Clad. I do have several other bare-metal All-Clad pieces that excellent and will undoubtedly outlast me.


                1. re: Jim Washburn
                  HLing RE: Jim Washburn Jan 21, 2005 12:07 AM

                  It is cheaper and just as easy to do bacon and eggs in a well seasoned cast iron pan.

                  I stopped using non-stick anything because I find that cast iron can be just as effective, and yet could withstand higher heat.

                  1. re: HLing
                    Jim Washburn RE: HLing Jan 21, 2005 11:47 AM

                    You are absolutely right. Cast iron is great. I wouldn't think of using anything else for fried chicken, cornbread, etc. I just have a slight preference for a non-stick coated pan for bacon and eggs, but I'll certainly never again pay much money for one.


                    1. re: HLing
                      Scab RE: HLing Jan 21, 2005 10:59 PM

                      Eggsactly what I wuz going to say.

                  2. re: chococat
                    DanaB RE: chococat Jan 20, 2005 09:33 PM

                    I don't think *any* non-stick pans have a long shelf life. If I had to do it over, I'd invest my $$ in quality stainless pots and pans, and buy a lesser cost teflon pan. The all-clad teflon/non-stick pans that I have *have* lasted longer than real cheapies, but they still do not have the life of the regular stainless.

                    Meanwhile, I have to say, do any quality pots and pans "wear out"? My grandmother is still using the pots she got when she got married 70 years ago, and I have all my mom's pots and pans that are at least 25 years old, and have never had any problems. When I want to expand my "holdings," so to say, I buy all-clad, but the Farberware set of my mom's has also lasted very well.

                    1. re: DanaB
                      Ruth Lafler RE: DanaB Jan 21, 2005 05:03 PM

                      I, too, was a little puzzled by the question. My mom is still using the Farberware she got for a wedding present, and her 50th anniversary is this summer. I have an all-clad saucepan I bought used at a garage sale when I got my first apartment almost 30 years ago, and it still looks almost new.

                      There's no reason why a decent-quality stainless steel pan shouldn't last a lifetime, unless, as someone said, you subject it to extreme abuse of some kind.

                  3. s
                    Sunshine Girl RE: jonathan Jan 20, 2005 03:51 PM

                    Along these same lines with the All-Clad stuff, has anyone tried the new MC2 stuff? What kind of warranty is on that? And how does it differ in use than the other All-Clad products? Pros/Cons/Indifference?

                    1. e
                      Ellen RE: jonathan Jan 20, 2005 04:01 PM

                      I have a provision in my will...

                      1. p
                        Parrot Mom RE: jonathan Jan 20, 2005 04:31 PM

                        My Bridgeport Brass all stainless steel with a copper core is on it's FIFTIETH year...Although I rarely use the frying pans I have a big dutch oven, three sizes of sauce pans and the three sizes of frying pans..all with covers. I also have an old dutch oven in hammered aluminum which was my mothers and is definetely 75 years and up.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: Parrot Mom
                          Zoe RE: Parrot Mom Jan 20, 2005 05:27 PM

                          My sister in law's Mom bought such a set in 1952 and it looks as good as when it came out of the box - of course she cleans it up only in the way that things were cleaned up in the 50's. Thoroughly! We just bought a set of Wolfgang Pucks Stainless and it is excellent - cooks well, cleans up well and the heat is so evenly distributed, its a pleasure.

                        2. p
                          p.j. RE: jonathan Jan 20, 2005 04:53 PM

                          My basic Farberware saucepans are pushing 30 yrs. old, and are doing just fine. One pot has a handle that loosens up--I just tighten it up.

                          We purchased a set of non-stick Farberware Millenium almost 5 years ago, and that set, including frying pans, is also in great shape. I love the extra handle on the large frying pan.

                          1. m
                            Mish RE: jonathan Jan 21, 2005 09:53 AM

                            Have had my all-clad pieces about 5 1/2 years...all still work like new. They arere definitely not a short-term set/investment! My 3 non-stick pans are in great condition too. I don't abuse them, and I put a piece of paper towel between pans when storing. They've held up beautifully and I plan on using them for many more years to come.

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