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Consumer Reports Investigates Exploding Pyrex

The new January, 2011 issue of Consumer Reports has a five page spread on "Glass bakeware that shatters." While they stopped short of saying not to buy the stuff, it's pretty clear that there are serious safety hazards with Pyrex and Anchor Hocking products. Cookware discussion boards have been covering this for the past few years. It's nice to see CR researching the topic too. This article is not online yet, but should be soon.

I believed the cooks who posted their experiences with shattering glassware in spite of the exhaustive denials by the manufacturers. They are still denying responsibility to the CR investigators.

To be safe, I simply quit using transparent glass for any heating applications. Good quality stoneware and porcelain have replaced Pyrex for me. With careful shopping online and in TJX stores, it wasn't that expensive.

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  1. There may be problems with current production, but the world is full of Pyrex and Fire-King that have not exploded or shattered in decades of use. It's pretty useful stuff -- versatile, durable, and very inexpensive. Look for it in the second-hand market.

    2 Replies
    1. re: ellabee

      Since we're talking about glass and ceramic breaking due to heat stress, here's another story: I took a hot steamy wet lid off a pan and set it on my glass cooktop flat so that it created a suction strong enough to crack the cooktop its entire diagonal length. We had to replace the cooktop. Now I set the lid down at the edge so air can get up under it.

      1. re: Querencia

        *that* is crazy...I absolutely believe you, but whoddathunkit? (if I stop and think about it logically, yes, it can happen...but I don't think I would have given it any thought in the heat of the moment.)

    2. I had a glass bakeware product disintegrate in my hands. I took the glass out of the oven and it literally shattered in my hands. There was glass everywhere. Fortunately I was able to clean up and no harm was done to me....but I'm retiring the rest of my glass bakeware after the report in consumer reports. It is not worth taking a chance that the next time something happens the glass shatters and winds up in my eye or some other bad scenario. When the baking dish shattered I thought it was a defective dish and did nothing; but now that it has happened to many others, I'm not willing to take the risk any more.

      1. I wonder if they're not making Pyrex like they used to. I've got several Pyrex pieces that get used in the oven quite often; they must be 30+ years old, and I've never had a problem. Maybe they've changed the composition of the glass in recent years.

        7 Replies
        1. re: CindyJ

          Pyrex in US used to be made of borosilicate glass, now the Pyrex bakeware you see are made with soda lime glass. The Pyrex lab glassware are still made with borosilicate glass.

          http://www.amazon.com/PYREX-Brand-432...

          In short borosilicate glass has a very low thermal expansion coefficient which is why scientists have little problem using these borosilicate lab glassware for chemical reactions. Not to say they will never break, but they are resistant to thermal shock. Soda lime glass is not. Therefore you hear all these US Pyrex bakeware breaking.

          I kept saying US Pyrex, because European Pyrex are still made with borosilicate glass.

          1. re: Chemicalkinetics

            Thank you very much for the explanation and link.

            1. re: Chemicalkinetics

              What what about impact? Cast iron sink, marble pastry board, granite counters... there are lots of unforgiving surfaces in a kitchen. Which type of glass is less fragile when it comes to being dropped or hit?

              1. re: KansasKate

                Great question, and I assume you actual know the answer as well. :)

                That is World Kitchen (maker of US Pyrex) major defense. Although soda lime glass is worse than borosilicate in term of thermal shock resistance, soda lime glass is better in term of physical impact resistance.

                1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                  Huh?

                  I'm a glass artist, and I work with both soda-lime (104 coe) and boro. I've never heard of, nor experienced this claim of soda-lime glass having more impact resistance than borosilicate.

                  Not saying it's not true, but I've been melting glass for years, and in my experience, boro is the tougher glass in pretty much all applications involving impact. Most of my experience is with "accidental concrete floor droppage" or "fling-age", mind you.....not exactly peer-reviewed science:)

                  1. re: SherBel

                    The soda lime glass in Pyrex products have been strengthened/tempered after forming to increase their impact resistance. That does not mean that it the glass has been toughened to be more impact resistant than borosilicate, but that the performance of their glass may be different than the performance of the soda-lime glass that you work with.

                    Anecdotal evidence aside, I would imagine that their bean counters and insurance adjusters ran the numbers of liability from injury of borosilicate breaking from impact vs tempered soda-lime breaking from thermal expansion, and the numbers (after factoring in cost of re-tooling the production line and differences of ongoing cost of materials) came out in favour of continuing use of soda-lime.

                  2. re: Chemicalkinetics

                    Count me as someone who would much prefer thermal sturdiness.

                    I would be much more upset if my Mac and cheese exploded in my hands when I took it out of the oven than if I clumsily dropped a glass casserole dish onto my hard floor.

            2. Agreed about the older stuff, I have pieces of pyrex, mainly older oval casseroles that have been my go-to bakeware for over 20 years. I don't plan to quit using it because of an article in Consumer Reports, whom I love, but they're far from infallible.

              1 Reply
              1. re: EWSflash

                +1 - Mine are about 38 years old and still going strong.

              2. I have two pyrex baking dishes; one is 40 years old, the other about 25 years old in which have oven baked thousands of meals and baked goods and have microwaved an equal number of times. Perhaps it's because they're made with the old glass recipe, but there is no way I'm ditching them. Last year I replaced all my plastic storage containers with pyrex. They go from freezer to microwave to dishwasher repeatedly without incident. I just don't put them near wet or cold surfaces when hot. So far, very good.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Ambimom

                  I feel exactly the same way; my pan has got to have 20+ years on it, and is my go-to dish used many times per week. But I guess I ought to respect it more, since it looks like replacing it may be hard!

                2. According to:
                  http://www.consumeraffairs.com/news04...
                  Anything bought before 1998 was made using the old processes and is safe (from exploding after heat changes, not from being dropped :)).

                  I don't see anything bad about using it for cold. 95% of my Pyrex use is in the fridge and freezer. I used to heat leftovers in the toaster oven (good size tabletop convection oven) but I'll probably stop doing that. Should still be good for storage but oy.

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: CyndiN

                    "Anything bought before 1998 was made using the old processes and is safe..."

                    Is there a way to tell when a piece was made? A mark on the bottom, maybe?

                    Edit: Snopes quotes part of the CR article here: http://www.snopes.com/food/warnings/p...

                    It seems that Pyrex switched over to soda lime before Corning sold to World Kitchen in 1998, but it's unclear how long before.

                    1. re: KansasKate

                      I've built up a pretty good collection of the old Pyrex stove-top pans, from 1 pint to 2.5-quart capacity, with the clip-on handles. As these have been out of production since I was a little kid, I think they're safe ;-) They're also my secret weapon for making good brown gravy …

                      1. re: KansasKate

                        Here is a link to the site "Pyrex Love". They have great photos of dozens of vintage patterns. Not all have the date of manufacture, but it will help you learn which patterns are older.

                        http://www.pyrexlove.com/

                        My youngest Pyrex is from the '80's. I use vintage Pyrex almost daily and have never had a problem with shattering due to thermal shock. As a glass artist in a prior life, I would never buy the new Pyrex for oven use. Soda-lime glass is a very poor choice for oven use.

                        1. re: meatn3

                          (Wiping egg from my face)

                          I am surprised by the info that the glass formula changed 60 years ago...I had always heard and believed that it was borosilicate.

                          That said, I have no concerns using my vintage Pyrex.

                    2. Wow. Another discouraging example of "things aren't made the way they used to be..." I'm the second generation user of most of the Pyrex in our house. It was cooked in countless times by my mother, since the 1950's, first. And NONE of it has ever broken! In fact, it's the dishware that never ends...it just goes on and on my friends. :-)

                      There's plenty out there, dirt cheap, still. My local Junque shop sells almost all their Pyrex for less than $3 a piece.

                      5 Replies
                      1. re: Beckyleach

                        Or you can buy Pyrex in Europe. Their Pyrex cookware/bakeware are still made with borosilicate glass.

                        1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                          My understanding is that Corning Glass "Pyrex" sold to consumers for bake ware has been soda-lime glass since WW2, and not borosilicate, which is reserved for scientific uses (including the 200-inch mirror in the Palomar telescope. Corning had considered using the ubiquitous custard cups to help form weight-saving voids -- it was the Depression and they had lots in inventory -- but it didn't work.) Borosilicate is available from Europe.

                          My opinion is that the shattering is less about QC and more about how folks use it. My grandmother had all the basic Pyrex pieces -- 13x9, covered casserole dish, pie plates -- and she used them all very gingerly to avoid thermal shock. Part of this is marketing ("From the freezer/To the oven/To the table!")

                          1. re: MikeB3542

                            My pan exploded even though I didn't do any of the things that should have caused thermal shock. It was terrifying and I will never use Pyrex in the oven again.

                            And frankly, if using a specific kind of cookware requires handling it "very gingerly" I prefer to use safer alternatives.

                            1. re: flourgirl

                              I knew someone who touched glass and it would explode. just a touch. Did you EVER drop that? even just a few inches? if it's not tempered, that's the likely culprit -- invisible fractures that picked just then to burst.

                      2. In the article, CR said they purchased US-made Pyrex and European-made Pyrex Classic for the tests. The latter is borosilicate glass.

                        Does anyone know where Pyrex Classic can be purchased in the US (or from Canada)?

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: al b. darned

                          My sister and I were making something using one of Alton Brown's recipes (I can't remember exactly what, right now). Anyway, the recipe called for taking the food-filled Pyrex (we saw him actually do this in his episode, with Pyrex) out of the oven and straight onto a range, to finish the cooking. (We have a gas range, I believe Alton does too).
                          The Pyrex was only a few years old.
                          Well, you can guess what happened.
                          We're still picking the glass out of the bottom of the range.

                        2. Yesterday this happened to me. After my frightening experience, I've been blessed. Glass particles were on my head, neck, arms and legs.. I am warning everyone who do not understand this product! Very dangerous, this was made to use in oven and microwaves. Read up on the dangers. This did not just shattered, it literally exploded in front of my face. Large pieces flew, could have cut up my face & eyes. I'm fine, was shaken up.

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: Nilda4Jesus

                            Sorry that happened to you... What were you making exactly?

                            I have so many Pyrex bowls, measuring cups, and bakeware that I don't know what to do with them. Actually, I do--I use them daily. Some of my pieces were given to me by my mother when I got my first apartments (they are 30+ years old) and I've supplemented with many new ones. I stick them in the microwave constantly (for heating single-servings of frozen peas and have even made rice in there out of desperation), in the oven (lasagna, cakes, etc.), and they always get hand-rinsed then washed in the dishwasher on high heat. I've NEVER had a problem with either the old or new ones. I am notoriously clumsy when carrying heavy things and have even dropped my 9"x13" Pyrex pans on the hard tile of my kitchen without so much as a scratch on them...? Maybe some of these newer pans are slipping through the assembly line with defects. I don't doubt everyone's experiences and they honestly worry me. I was actually just thinking about going and buying another set of the small storage bowls...

                            1. re: nothingswrong

                              Hi, I didn't get notification that you replied, I just happened to come across that you replied.

                              To answer your question, I was turkey burgers. What I found strange when that happened, is that I had my pyrex for more than 15 years, and I cooked anything in them. It was very bazaar. One of the things I do remember in another incident was when I cook chicken wings, nothing happened to that glass pan until I put the hot pan into the sink and it broke, not exploded. So, I learned many years ago, that I can't put the pan in a sink or any wet areas, while the pan is very hot. Why the pan exploded like that, I have no idea, that when I did take the pan out and place on top of the stove that was clean and dry, I cut the burger, just to see if it cook well, because I only had it in the oven for about 10 minutes and put it on the middle rack and broiled. I don't know, I have broiled chicken wings in those pans too. What was different this time? Could it be too old? I just moved into a high altitude can that change?

                              So, I mostly use my pans in a microwave, hoping it won't explode. I have my other glass pans that are large, I would use it to make lasagna, anything that will fill the pan up for cooking.

                          2. Add another one - our Pyrex baking dish exploded forcefully last night, some small shards of glass and dust on the counter 4 to 6 feet away, after baking some hard-shell tacos at 425F, then placing the dish on the stove top (room-temperature). With two small kids in the house I think we'll be looking at earthware as suggested above...

                              1. When I first started to date my fiance, I was nervous about the idea of cooking for him. He's French, after all, and --well..you get the idea.
                                Anyway, when I finally did make a great meal for him, I made sure it was going to be something he would remember. Chicken with Tarragan...nice baguette, good cheese..great wine..and for dessert--a cherry clafoutis.
                                Well, I was kind of nervous--about my cooking being judged. In my haste, I took the chicken off the burner..I didn't have a gas stove at the time, so the stove was flat. So I turned the burner off--I took the clafouti out of the oven and placed it on the "off" turned burner--just to sit for a minute until I moved it. Wouldn't you know--the clafoutis was in a pyrex pie plate. It exploded ALL OVER the kitchen, and me...and since he was standing there--him. Oh no.
                                To add insult to injury, when the mess was cleaned up, we sat down to have what was left of the meal--bread and cheese..and wine. As luck would have it--my luck o' the Irish, I spilled the wine all over him.
                                I've never used Pyrex since..and he is still with me!

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: jarona

                                  Oh my goodness. Jarona, certainly you created a memorable meal. Glad everyone's all right! Whew...

                                2. I purchased a whole set of new pyrex baking dishes with the plastic covers because I prepare many meals for freezing for my elderly parents. If a product requires extreme care, I worry that an accident may be imminent; mistakenly going from freezer to oven is probable in this case. Does anyone know if this shattering problem also involves Corning Ware, old or new?

                                  2 Replies
                                  1. re: tuttebene

                                    I think, and I hope someone else knows for sure, that the older Corning Ware is safe. I have had a glass pie plate break. It did not explode. I use glass pie plates in the microwave. I have decided never to bake in them again. But I do use my Pyrex measuring cups in the micro all the time. I dishwash them. I pour boiling hot broth into the big ones from the pressure cooker. This stuff is the newer, not the older.

                                    If it were me, I'd get something else for my elderly parents. For one thing the stuff is probably heavy for them to maneuver. if it drops, it might well break. I'd use a good quality plastic than can be safely microwaved.

                                    The thing is that so many people experience the exploding glass that I'd say it is not safe to be used for cooking or baking. The manufacturer says all these cases are because of improper handling, but even so, it is apparent that normal kitchen use fosters these "improper" situations. There are safer alternatives.

                                    1. re: tuttebene

                                      Be sure to read the labels carefully. Some of the current heavy glass storage containers - e.g.
                                      GlassLock - are labeled as safe for fridge, freezer, and microwave, but NOT for oven baking. The stuff is heavy and looks like pyrex. It makes little sense to me that a container that can go from freezer to microwave can't take oven heat. I have been using mine to bake smaller dishes of casseroles and the like, but what I do is to place them on a metal sheet pan before filling. I bake them on that pan and do not remove them from the pan until it has cooled enough to be handled without potholders. No breakage in dozens of uses but I AM careful in handling them, and always hand-wash them. Since reading about the explosions a few years ago, I put all my glass and ceramic cookware onto a sheet pan before using. Nothing has broken but if it ever does, at least I won't have food all over the bottom of the oven.

                                      I wonder if automatic dishwashers have anything to do with the breakages and explosions. More jostling, temperature extremes, etc. I don't use a dishwasher. I shattered what was probably an original Pyrex decades ago, before I knew that damp surfaces were a no-no.

                                      Also worth mentioning. The ORIGINAL white Corningware with the blue cornflower is not suitable for microwaving. The cookware itself heats up to dangerous levels, without effectively cooking the food unless used for prolonged intervals. Once microwaves gained a foothold, Corning reformulated the cornflower cookware to be microwave-appropriate.

                                    2. One of mine just exploded the other day too! My apartment has an electric stove, so its not immediately obvious when the burner is on. My boyfriend had a pan of enchiladas sitting on the stovetop waiting to be eaten and turned on a different burner to boil some water for tea. He happened to be rushed and had accidentally turned on the wrong burner....the one under the casserole dish. Needless to say it exploded all over the kitchen and into the living room. Thank god he was in the other room when it happened....

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: mleighn

                                        That's pilot error, and you really can't blame the Pyrex for exploding when it ended up setting on top of a live electric burner.

                                      2. There was a very interesting article in the January 2011 - edition of Consumer Affairs magazine about Pyrex and Anchor Hocking cookware, and the whole issue of exploding cookware, the history of pyrex, accidents using the cookware, etc. There is also a Snopes page on this issue.

                                        1) A few facts, Pyrex was a "brand trade mark name of Corning" for its heat-proof glass cookware invent in 1915, and it the earlest years of the cookware the cookware was made of borosilicate glass, then both borosilicate glass and soda lime glass, and now in America only soda line glass. Both Corning, and now World Kitchen report that dishes labeled "Pyrex"have been made of soda lime glass for the past 60 years, the changeover occuring in the 1940's. Corning sold its consumer housewares division to World Kitchen in 1998, which has produced the Pyrex products in the same plants using the same materials since then.

                                        If appears that at some point both borosilicate glass and soda lime glass were used to make Pyrex dishes, but by the 1980's, such dishes were made of soda lime glass for several reasons - cost, environmental issues, product safety, etc.

                                        2) All glassware products suffer from thermal shock - that is a rapid temperature change, however some glasses handle thermal shock better than other glasses. There are some 370 million pieces of Pyrex cookware in use, it is found in 80% of American homes - suggesting that many consumers find the products useful.

                                        3) Pyrex is not "indestructible" - all glass will break under certain conditions, and the cookware has usage guidelines that should be followed. For example, generally the cookware marked as Pyrex (regardless of being soda lime glass or borosilicate glass) in its use guidelines say to NOT PUT the cookware under the BROILER. The cookware was not designed for such direct heat uses.

                                        So what do we have in this message stream - folks who put the dishes under the broiler and who then wondered why the dish cracked! DAH! If they tell you doing "X" will crack the dish, and you "do X" - then why are you surprised that it cracked?

                                        So what do we have in this message stream - folks who put the dishes on hot stove tops, then they wonder why the dish cracked! If they tell you that doing "X" will crack the dish, and you "do X" - they why are you surprise that it cracked?

                                        4) Corningware - the white dishes are based om a glass-ceramic process that produces dishes that can withstand a variety of temperature changes. The material was originally designed for use as the nose cones of ballistic missles. Millions of the white dishes with the blue cornflower and other designs were produced. Corningware was manutactured by Corning, until the sale to World Kitchen, and for a few years it was also produced by them.

                                        The original pyroceramic glass version of CorningWare was removed from the US market in the late 1990s. It was re-introduced in 2009, due to popular demand. Since then World Kitchen has produced similar dishes made of common white glazed stoneware. The packaging for these newer CorningWare branded cookware products say specifically that they are not for stovetop use.

                                        5) Visions by Corning was a glass cookware line introduced in 1982 and widely popular Visions was a ceramic cookware line, with glass (Pyrex type) lids. It is available again through World Kitchen, including their outlet stores and through the web.

                                        Visions dishes especially the "base parts" are not Pyrex - only the dish lids are Pyrex. Visions dishers are "tougher" than Pyrex dishes in the sense of handling temperature extremes and changes. So yes, there were videos and commercials showing the "extreme" things that could be done - but these dishes are NOT Pyrex! Visions could go directly from the oven on to the stove for further cooking - Pyrex can not - Pyrex bakeware was not designed or meant for the stove - it says so right on the cookware! Visions like the older white Corningware was made for the stove-top, oven, freezer, etc. and to be taken directly from one to the other. Although most times it is best to actually let food thaw out a bit between switching places - better for the food that is.

                                        22 Replies
                                        1. re: Michael549

                                          FYI, I have had a Pyrex pie plate crack and break and it was not placed on a hot stovetop. I pulled the plate out of the oven, with food in it, and placed it on a completely cool glass cooktop. The plate cracked across the diameter. You could hear it.

                                          It is easy to say that if the Pyrex is used as it is supposed to be, there would be no explosions or breakage. However, the fact that so many of these incidents happen tells me that we have no business using this product for any sort of cooking.

                                          If memory serves, the people mentioned in the CU article had not used the Pyrex incorrectly.

                                          Since you seem to have a great deal of info about Corning Ware and Pyrex, perhaps you could clarify a previous question. Can you buy the same sort of Corning Ware now that you used to be able to buy? In other words, does the new stuff perform the way the old stuff does?

                                          Thank you.

                                          1. re: sueatmo

                                            Placing a hot glass plate on a cool glass cooktop is nearly as bad as putting a cool plate on a hot cooktop. Hot glass ware should go on an insulating pad or wire rack, so it can cool slowly.

                                            1. re: paulj

                                              I accept what you say about hot glass on a cool glass cooktop. However, I don't think what I did was unreasonable. If the stuff can't stand normal handling in the kitchen it shouldn't be marketed for kitchen use. The problem isn't that people don't know how to handle the stuff; the problem is that it breaks when used in a logical way. We don't normally clip and save instructions for bakeware, and refer to the instructions every time we use the stuff. Add this to the fact that Pyrex used to be less susceptible to thermal shock.

                                              I actually do use Pyrex. I use glass measuring cups, and I will put them in the micro. And I have glass pie plates I use in the micro for steaming veggies. I will never use them in the oven again.

                                              1. re: sueatmo

                                                "If the stuff can't stand normal handling in the kitchen it shouldn't be marketed for kitchen use."

                                                I feel the same way. Pyrex apparently has to be handled very gingerly in the kitchen, and I no longer use it in my oven, among other things.

                                                1. re: flourgirl

                                                  I wonder if people who have problems with shattering Pyrex also have problems with scratched and flaking Teflon.

                                                2. re: sueatmo

                                                  ". If the stuff can't stand normal handling in the kitchen it shouldn't be marketed for kitchen use."

                                                  Here's where there may be a generational difference. Those of us who grew up with Formica countertops just have never assumed that it's "normal handling" to put a hot container (whether from stove or oven) directly onto a counter. We internalized the idea that hot glass in particular should go onto cloths, wooden trivets, or dry metal trivets.

                                                  Somewhere along the line that truth seems to have been lost, as people got used to taking metal and enameled cast iron pots directly from the cooktop or oven onto a stone counter. Doing this should not be considered "normal handling" for porcelain, stoneware, and glass (pyrex) containers. There are literally millions of cooking-years of experience in the U.S. with pyrex loaf pans, casseroles, and lasagna pans that have never cracked or exploded.

                                                  There may be some real manufacturing problem now, but it's also the case that the kitchen wisdom about hot vitreous pans and dry cloths and wooden trivets has been lost.

                                                  1. re: ellabee

                                                    I think there's a LOT of truth to this.

                                                    (and stone countertops -- and Corian and all the others -- CAN crack from thermal shock -- it's rare...but it can happen. All the more reason to use a hot pad/rack/etc)

                                                    1. re: ellabee

                                                      There have been lots of people who had pyrex explode on them who didn't put a hot pyrex pan on the counter, etc.

                                                      I can't speak for suetmo, but as for myself, I was just speaking in generalities, i.e. that I know of no other material that will explode in the oven the way my pyrex pan did even though I had never once dropped it, it was at room temp when it went in the oven (and hadn't been cold in the first place,) that the food that went into it was already warm, etc. etc. The only thing I can figure was that it had some fine scratches that made it vulnerable.

                                                      And that's what I refer to when I talk about normal kitchen handling. If a pyrex pan can violently explode because of some minor surface scratches (and I don't even KNOW that my pan HAD any scratches when mine exploded) than I think it's an absurd material to be making oven ware out of. Period.

                                                      1. re: flourgirl

                                                        I have had a Pyrex pie plate, used for baking something in the oven, crack and break when it was pulled from the oven, and placed on my glass cooking surface which was cool. I AM of the generation who would intuitively put all hot things on a hot pad. I thought placing it on my heat proof but cool cooktop was fine, but I was wrong.

                                                        As I said before, ". If the stuff can't stand normal handling in the kitchen it shouldn't be marketed for kitchen use." And yes, I do use Pyrex measuring cups and large mixing bowls, but I don't put them in the oven, ever.

                                                        Best thing to do, I think, is to not buy any of this. Throw away all Pyrex baking dishes. There are better vessels to use anyway. (Ever had to scrub one of those things clean after baking something into the corners and edges? Ever had to juggle your serving dishes around on the table because someone brought scalloped potatoes in one of those space hogs?) But this is my opinion. Not everyone will agree.

                                                        1. re: sueatmo

                                                          this whole thread is freaking me out. lately i've been washing all my pyrex with my eyes and mouth closed, scared it's going to blow from the friction of a soft sponge!

                                                          my mom grew up in the midwest in the 50s and still uses all her pyrex from decades ago. when i first moved into my own place, she bought me a set of knives and a 13"x9" Pyrex casserole/baking dish. i was painfully inexperienced in the kitchen, and i can't tell you how many times i removed that thing from the hot oven--full of pineapple upside down cake or lasagna--and set/slammed it down onto the cold tile counter. i even dropped it once when washing--watched it in slow-mo as it made its way from my hands to the hardwood floor and tumbled a few times. and... nothing. not even a chip or hairline crack.

                                                          i've had that baking dish for years now and haven't had any problems. i must have a good 15+ Pyrex pieces that i use obsessively--though mostly for measuring, mixing, and in the microwave.

                                                          regardless, like i said earlier, this thread is freaking me out.

                                                          1. re: nothingswrong

                                                            I use my large Pyrex measuring cups for microwaving, and have had no probs. I would never, ever use them in the oven.

                                              2. re: Michael549

                                                I will say this again and again and again. When my dish exploded on me, I HADN'T put it under the broiler, I HADN'T put it on the stove, I HADN'T put it in the oven cold (it was never cold) - and it exploded into a gazillion pieces anyway.

                                                So don't "duh" people. It's very condescending and insulting to those of us who experienced it. It was quite frightening, it could have been a real tragedy and I would NEVER use pyrex in the oven again. Never.

                                                1. re: flourgirl

                                                  I do not mean to be condescending or insulting, nor do I wish to imply that "what folks say happened - did not happen". I am not a shill for any company etc. Nor was I talking about EVERY member of this forum, either. I am not trying to explain EVERY situation. However a few messages above this one are folks talking about using the cookware in ways that were clearly marked on the box, in the paper guides, and on the cookware AS NOT TO DO! From folks talking about putting the cookware on the stove to boil, others putting it under the broiler, others putting it on the stove even after they just turned the burner off - as if the burner would not still be hot, etc. So yes, after some 370 million pieces of the product sold it does stand to reason that some folks might indeed have problems through no "fault" of their own. There are several messages just as I have described in this stream and in the other streams on this website about pyrex dishes. Clearly one fact has to be made clear: " Things made of glass can crack it - is the nature of glass to crack - it is the conditions, stresses, and what was done that matter."

                                                  I've been told that it is best to place hot pyrex cookware with hot food inside, on a dry cloth towel or trivet. Many folks (but not everyone) have granite countertops that are cold to the touch or when placing a hot dish upon them may (I said may) create not a heat crack problem but an impact problem - the dish was bumped on the hard surface. Again, that's just a guess - I was not there. I have cork-board trivets that I put hot dishes on to protect the counters and table.

                                                  The Consumer Affairs report showed that with Pyrex dishes that there should be NOT BE ANY WATER on the granite countertop, or (by extension) on the cloth towels/pot holders. That is a sure-fire way to crack the dishes, nor should one pour cold liquids into a hot dish. The Consumer Affairs report indicated that they did not examine every case or claim - thus they could not "verify" any of the claims made. Their report also showed that when the cookware is used NOT in compliance with the safety guides, it will crack - a feature that they tested on purpose. In their tests, they were able to make all the cookware crack/break regardless of which formula of Pyrex was used.

                                                  The whole "soda lime issue" is that Corningware and World Kitchen makes the Pyrex cookware (and has for 60 years), better able to withstand bumps and bruises - but leaves it a bit vulnerable to heat/cold related cracking. While the alternative, the borosilicate glass that is mentioned in the message is a bit better to resist heat/cold related cracking, but does not hold up well to bumps and bruises. Most folks complained of bumping, dropping and bruising that cracked the cookware - which they feel that have dealt with by using the soda lime formula. There were also issues of costs, enviromental protection, etc in the decisions 40-60 years ago for the movement to soda lime glass - according to what I have read on Snopes and other sites.

                                                  I am a user of the older white Corningware and Visions products - which can withstand a variety of "abuse", and in comparison I only have a few Pyrex bakeware pieces. I have however plenty of Pyrex pot lids. I've had these items for years, about three decades. Now I feel old saying that. (smile).

                                                  The new Corningware items since the 1990's produced by World Kitchen is NOT the pyroceramic dishes produced earlier, but a white stoneware composition. These newer items are made for the oven, fridge/freezer, dishwasher, etc. - but not the stovetop. They CAN NOT withstand direct heat, and they say so on the box, paper guides and on the cookware itself. So no the "new stuff" does not perform the way the "old stuff" did because the formula used to make the dishes was changed, but that is clearly said so on the box.

                                                  Some folks go on Ebay or other vintage websites to buy the older white Corningware or Visions products, or order the white Corningware or Visions from the "over-seas" websites of World Kitchen. Usually the word - Classic is applied to the name on the website, for example - Corningware Classic, etc. World Kitchens does not market the "stove-top" capable cookware in the Unitied States - either Pyrex, Corningware or Visions.

                                                  Again, I was not trying to be condescending or insulting.

                                                  1. re: Michael549

                                                    I have to agree that there are people who misuse this cookware. And I probably shouldn't be so defensive, but I would point out that there was nothing in your original post acknowledging the possibility that at least some of the reported incidents might have happened in spite of not using the cookware incorrectly. Which than implies that the fault for all exploding pyrex lies with the user, and not the material itself.

                                                    1. re: Michael549

                                                      Thanks for clarifying the Corning ware issue. You answered a question someone had earlier in this thread.

                                                      I do think that since so many people have had problems with glass explosions, this product should be recalled and redesigned. One can maintain that if certain conditions are met, no problems would ensue. But, clearly, for one reason or another problems are occurring. Part of the problem might be that users expect Pyrex and Corningware to have the same properties they had for decades before. Expectations are the same, even if the product isn't.

                                                      When you have a heat resistant counter or a cool glass cooktop it is reasonable to expect that a baking dish would not crack or explode if it is set on it. That is my opinion.

                                                      I got rid of my big old pyrex baking dishes for another reason, though. I hated the room they took up on my Thanksgiving table. I prefer deeper, plain white baking and serving dishes with a smaller footprint now, although I do have a Corning Ware French White casserole that is at least 20 years old.

                                                      And I did see some French White casseroles at BB & B recently. I don't know if they are the "classic" line or the newer stuff I have seen at the grocer's.

                                                      1. re: sueatmo

                                                        Most likely the French White casseroles at BB & B and at your grocer's are made of the same white stoneware composition. Simply looking at the bottom of the cookware is a sign - is there a ridge or ring on the bottom of the cookware, is this ridge coarse?

                                                        If so - the dish is made of the white stoneware composition. Most of the corningware dishes using the older pyroceram composition with wide handles had smooth flat bottoms to be used on smooth top ranges, and those with the nub handles were clearly to stovetop usage.

                                                        Simply turn over the display models and look at the bottoms. Or read the box, it will say "no stove top usage". These particular models have been out for 20 years or more - so there are plenty of them in stores.

                                                        1. re: Michael549

                                                          I'm sure I would be able to tell if it was the old fashioned French white Corning Ware. I appreciate the explanation you've given. I would never think to check the bottom of a pan to see if were smooth. One thing though, the French White vessels have never had handles. The pans resemble souffle pans with a round deep shape and no handles. They were by far the best looking of the Corning Ware.

                                                          1. re: sueatmo

                                                            Yes, you are right about the French White dishes that were meant for souffle's. Often times the Corningware dishes that did not have any handles (pyroceram based I mean) were NOT meant for the stovetop. Not because the dish itself could not take the heat, but because there were no handles - it would be a safety hazard handling a hot dish on the stovetop. Often such dishes were not recommended for the stovetop. I forgot to mention that tidbit, thanks. Mike

                                                        2. re: sueatmo

                                                          "When you have a heat resistant counter or a cool glass cooktop it is reasonable to expect that a baking dish would not crack or explode if it is set on it. That is my opinion."

                                                          It's an opinion contradicted by the experience of hundreds of years' worth of cooks. The heat resistance of the counter doesn't affect the vulnerability to thermal shock or impact of the baking dish you want to be able to put right on it. What you're describing is risky not only for pyrex, but for porcelain, stoneware, or space-age ceramicware.

                                                          Dry cloth, cork, or wood minimizes the risk of thermal shock or impact to any hot, vitreous material. Using trivets is no more "delicate handling" than using hotpads with pan handles. It's normal kitchen behavior.

                                                          1. re: ellabee

                                                            One of my initial cooking 'pots' was a 1 1/2 qt round Pyrex. I don't recall what happened to it, but I don't recall it breaking. I still have a few glass pie plates, and glass measuring cups, including an 8 cup one used mainly for microwave cooking.

                                                            But in past few years I have discovered traditional earthenware, both the Chinese sand pots, and Spanish cazuela. They can be used on a gas flame, but still require protection against thermal shock. I don't even put them in a preheated oven. And I have a spare sand pot, for when (not if) one brakes.

                                                        3. re: Michael549

                                                          As a young bride decades ago, I actually registered for Visions cookware -- what a mistake THAT was!

                                                          Hated that stuff, but soldiered on with it for a couple of years until I just couldn't take it anymore. The heat retention meant that everything burned...and there's NO scrubbing with that stuff...you have to just soak it and hope for the best. It DID make awesome fluffy rice -- but that's the only nice thing I can say about it.

                                                          Never had one break...but I sure thought about taking a ball-pein hammer to it a few times.

                                                          1. re: sunshine842

                                                            I really liked the Visions many years ago and bought loads of pieces of it. I believe there are still a few pieces hanging around here just for ole' times sake.

                                                            When taking a year off and traveling across country in an RV, I took 3 pieces to cook with. They were always wrapped with kitchen towels against breakage once we started down the road. Nope, they all cracked, not chipped, but cracked almost in half vertically.

                                                    2. FYI, I saw French borosilicate glass cooking vessels featured in a new (this week) sale flyer for Tuesday Morning. The styles available will differ from store to store.

                                                      1. Another description of the difference (and short notes on the science behind them) and an interesting side effect: changing Pyrex made it a little more difficult to cook crack (as in crack cocaine). The tempered glass can't handle that process so they have to seek out borosilicate instead (apparently usually stolen labware as opposed to trying to find alternate sources of borosilicate).

                                                        http://www.popsci.com/science/article...

                                                        3 Replies
                                                        1. re: CrazyOne

                                                          Nice idea, but this letter:

                                                          http://www.worldkitchen.com/usr/pdf/D...

                                                          indicates that haven't made borosilicate glass in over 60 years -- just a few years before the appearance of crack.

                                                          1. re: sunshine842

                                                            Hm, yes, interesting. CR and the letter is talking about bakeware and PopSci is talking about measuring cups, so there still could be a difference. It's also possible that PopSci has fallen victim to the same assumption that CR and many other people seem to believe: that all Pyrex was borosilicate until the brand was sold to World Kitchen. We now see this was not the case at least for bakeware. Not sure the letter is 100% clear on the measuring cups, but it may be true for those too.

                                                            I know in our house one or more of the old Pyrex glass baking pans says Made in France so not sure which that would be since the letter is only talking about the US plant.

                                                            1. re: sunshine842

                                                              I hate to sound like a conspiracy theorist but this is the third version of the story they've given us. First they said they had no idea when the change to soda lime happened; then the
                                                              formula changed some time in the 70's, now it's 60 years ago. I don't think we'll know the real story until a lawsuit gets to trial.

                                                          2. Bodum is taking the opening provided by public concerns about soda lime pyrex to promote its borosilicate bakeware here (otherwise I have a hard time believing the word 'borosilicate' would make it into the marketing copy). Some have silicon covers (for marinating, fridge storage, freezing, transport):
                                                            http://www.zappos.com/bodum-hot-pot-1...

                                                            1. After reading many threads, articles, etc., I have decided to pitch my Pyrex bakeware. I am curious if anyone has thought about glass lids for skillets, stoneware, etc. Do you feel comfortable keeping & using these? I know I've knocked the glass lid on the side of my cast iron skillet a few times while putting it on. I suppose it could be compromised...

                                                              1. Wow. This happened to me! I just assumed it was a one-off. Clear glass baking dish (not sure of the brand - probably Pyrex) out of hot oven, placed on room temp stovetop, exploded on impact. And I mean 'exploded' - not cracked or broke. Glass shards flew everywhere, all over the kitchen, floor etc., and there were children and pets in the house at the time. I remember it happened so quickly I didn't register right away what had happened. One second I was holding it in my hand, the next there was glass (and chicken and hot grease) everywhere and no more dish.

                                                                Completely open to the idea that I may have been handling it wrong. To be honest, up until this thread, I was unaware that there were precautions (heat related, not impact related - I knew not to bash it around) to take with glass bakeware - it never crossed my mind. That said, if these things are likely to *explode* I feel like the manufacturer's warning need to be stated very clearly at the point of purchase. That exploding dish was the only piece I had, and I just won't purchase any more.

                                                                Kind of crazy to hear how many people this has happened to, though. It was scary and shocking.

                                                                1. I am baffled that people are surprised when hot glass shatters when you put it on a cold surface. It's simple physics!

                                                                  Maybe its just that I grew up cooking with glass cookware - we had the Pyrex cake pans, both round and square, that you can't find for love nor money now. I was taught ALWAYS to use a trivet, cork, towels, or wood for glass, and metal trivets only for metal pans.

                                                                  There's nothing wrong with Pyrex - use it properly and chances that it will break are slim. If anyone has any of the cake pans they want to get rid of, just send 'em on to me. I have enough of the other sort.

                                                                  I was EXTREMELY disappointed to find out that corningware isn't real corningware anymore, too! Seems truth in advertising ought to kick in there!

                                                                  11 Replies
                                                                  1. re: CookingForReal

                                                                    But a lot of folks are reading and following the instructions to no avail: http://www.consumeraffairs.com/homeow...

                                                                    Would you expect the glass plate of a microwave to explode if you cooked a frozen dinner? No. Why? Because that glass is tempered borosilicate glass. Just like Pyrex should be, but isn't.

                                                                    1. re: MplsM ary

                                                                      That website does not review postings at all. Also, they charge companies $300 a month for a "membership" to respond to postings on the site. That's $3600 per year. Not really a reliable source.

                                                                      I have quite thoroughly read and understood the review Consumer's Reports did, and the number of scenarios you describe are very small. As they note, such occurrences most often are the result of old damage, cracks that were already present in the bakeware. The difference between borosilicate and soda glass isn't that big; however, the annealing process in cheap factories in China probably IS a problem. Nevertheless the breaking-out-of-nowhere-for-no-reason-scenario is a vanishingly small proportion of the reports. Most boil down to the type of situation described above, somebody sets a hot glass dish on a cold metal or granite/marble/whatever surface and thermal shock shatters the glass.

                                                                      Got any pyrex cake pans? As I said before, I'll take 'em off your hands anytime.

                                                                      In the meantime I REGULARLY cook with pyrex for nearly everything that goes in the oven, for over 45 years, all my current pyrex is "new" pyrex (since the alleged switchover in manufacturing) and nothing has ever broken.

                                                                      Consumers Report were only able to reproduce breakage due to thermal shock. I'm not saying there were no incidents of breakage due to less obvious causes - but they weren't able to make it happen.

                                                                      I do think that the current situation with unregulated manufacturing in China (mostly) needs to be addressed, and soon. I do think it is likely that there are flaws in workmanship, materials, and processing (such as annealing, improper melting of the glass, bubbles or other occlusions in the glass, etc etc etc) that probably make it more likely - but still not very likely - that glass bakeware manufactured under these circumstances may break.

                                                                      Nevertheless, people complaining that they didn't read the directions before throwing them away so how could you POSSIBLY expect them to know proper use and care really need to get a grip and take some responsibility. Even a rudimentary knowledge of physics should tell you, at least after the fact if not before, that hot glass set on a cold, possibly wet, surface, is likely to shatter.

                                                                      The posting I responded to described a situation where the glass broke due to thermal shock. A little care is really all that's necessary to stop that from happening. Putting a hot pan of any substance on a cold burner isn't the world's best idea anyway - Every once in awhile (about as often as we hear about a Pyrex pan shattering in the oven) someone will have an electric burner break on them due to - thermal shock. I don't think we're all going to stop using stoves because of that.

                                                                      YMMV, but I'm not really seeing a reason to throw out my beloved naturally non-stick Pyrex bakeware.

                                                                      1. re: CookingForReal

                                                                        I don't know if you're still responding to my post specifically but I *did* and do take responsibility. I put the pan on the stove surface (it was warm, btw, not cold, if that matters), so it was my fault it exploded. The only thing that strikes me about this whole issue is the fact that HEY, YOUR GLASS PAN MAY EXPLODE IN YOUR FACE is less known than I feel makes sense. I wonder why that is. I grew up watching my Mom cook and helping her, and she was always careful to give me safety tips etc., but no one, not my Mom, not my cooking class teacher in highschool, no one ever told me about the exploding issue. And it may be rudimentary physics but a)I am an English Lit grad and, you know, 'science is hard' :D, and b)I have always thought of Pyrex as 'tough' - as a material that for whatever magical reason *wasn't* going to shatter without serious deliberate attempts to do so. Again, I am NOT saying that because no one ever told me, that it isn't my fault, I'm just surprised I never ran across the info. I don't deep fry turkeys indoors either, but I know it's probably not the safest idea. Exploding glassware seems like something that would be...I don't know...taken more seriously (i.e. more widely known as a saftey issue).

                                                                        What form do the warnings take on packaging, has anyone seen them? My Pyrex came to me second hand and packaging-less. I'm curious about whether or not it's fine print on an insert or a big bold warning right on the box etc.

                                                                        1. re: montrealeater

                                                                          "The only thing that strikes me about this whole issue is the fact that HEY, YOUR GLASS PAN MAY EXPLODE IN YOUR FACE is less known than I feel makes sense."

                                                                          Exactly.

                                                                          Bakeware that inherently carries that risk is not something I am willing to use in my oven any longer. Exploding pyrex is a terrifying experience - and in my case, with my completely open floor plan, and a toddler at the time my incident occurred, who very easily could have been running through the kitchen as I opened the oven door and the pan exploded - well, I could have had an unbelievable tragedy on my hands. It's just not worth it. There are plenty of safer alternatives that work just as well as pyrex.

                                                                          1. re: flourgirl

                                                                            Yep, Flourgirl, I understand and agree. When it happened to me there were little (very little, but mobile) kids and dogs in the house and although I would definitely have been upset if it had happened to me when I was alone in the house, it was very shocking at the time (in fact still is) to think what could have happened. It had me shaking for over an hour and I'm not really a timid person. There were large shards of glass over 6 feet from the stovetop!

                                                                            As I said, my actions played a part, but this is no "don't put this spatula on a hot surface or it may melt" warning. I'm surprised there haven't been any lawsuits over this yet (or have there?).

                                                                        2. re: CookingForReal

                                                                          I'll duke it out with you for all the orphaned Pyrex that comes your way -- I love the stuff, have been using it for several decades without incident, but after a case of slippery hands this weekend and a concrete-tile floor, am now in need of an 8" x 8" baking dish. Dammit.

                                                                          It was a bad weekend -- total wreckage: my 8" x 8" Pyrex baking dish, a stemmed water glass, a lightbulb, and a flowerpot. All in just 2 days.

                                                                      2. re: CookingForReal

                                                                        They do still make the Pyroceram but you have to explicitly look for Pyroceram or 'Stove Top.' http://www.shopworldkitchen.com/corni...

                                                                        1. re: CookingForReal

                                                                          OK, my pie plate broke when I put it on a room temperature glass cooktop. It wasn't cold, or even especially cool. The fact that this happens to so many, tells me that users don't know of the danger, or the "rules" for safe use are too hard to follow. I don't think that Pyrex bakeware is safe. Why use it when you have so many other options?

                                                                          1. re: sueatmo

                                                                            If the pie plate had been in the hot oven, say 350 or 400, and the cooktop was room temperature (70), the temperature contrast was 300 degrees. A cold cook top (e.g. fridge temperature) would only be 30 deg cooler. The temperature of the cook top wasn't so much the issue as its conductivity. The hot baking dish lost heat quickly to the cooktop, contracted and cracked. If it had been set on a hot plate or wire rack, it would have cooled slowly.

                                                                            Several summers ago I was washing my car. It was a sunny day, but not particularly hot. But as soon as the water ran down the warm windshield, a preexisting crack spread the rest of the way across the glass.

                                                                            Glass is prone to cracking when subjected to sharp temperature contrasts. Apparently the tempering of oven glassware allows it to handle the change from being cold to the hot oven, but it does not handle a sharp change in the other direction nearly as well.

                                                                            1. re: paulj

                                                                              You know, I just don't think Pyrex is safe for oven use. It is too temperamental. Perhaps it was a good choice 60 years ago, but now we have so many other choices. I mean, glass isn't even a good heat conductor, right? We can do better, and we can do safer. Again, this is my opinion.

                                                                              1. re: paulj

                                                                                When I was contemplating buying a glass-top range, I heard many stories about the glass cracking; not dangerous except to the pocket-book for replacement.

                                                                                As a result of their adamant reasons not to have a glass top, I have been very cautious as to what I set on top of the glass-top.

                                                                                We have running discussions about this:

                                                                                "Well, if I sit it down on the round-burner-part, that is meant to be more able to withstand the heat."

                                                                                And so on.

                                                                          2. Really getting sick of all this junk made in China. I read the labels nowadays. I bought a roasting pan without reading carefully and it seemed the surface was a spray-on teflon coating. Started bubbling up the second time I used it and put a bunchof teflon flakes in my food. Completely ruined my Thanksgiving (that product was Wearever which you should boycott). But anyway, I will bet this Pyrex is made in China. I would rather not buy anything or I would look for the used pyrex at a garage sale or on Ebay. We really have to stop tolerating this BS.

                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                            1. re: jcmods

                                                                              http://www.pyrexware.com/index.asp?pa...

                                                                              This company site states that Pyrex is still made in the U.S. There is also a list of "myths" and full instructions about how to use Pyrex.

                                                                              I think it is worth reading, but I still don't think it is safe. This is my opinion.

                                                                            2. We were cooking dinner in a pyrex dish and heard a loud bang - we all jumped and looked around - finally we saw that the dish exploded in the oven. Thank God it did it in there and not after we took it out.

                                                                              1. I just bought a Pyrex 20-piece storage set and find out few of them already have light scraches and tiny chips on the outer surface. Plus, some of them also have tiny bubbles within the glass, well, maximum 2 bubbles in each one. I know I may sound very picky. But will all these "defects" cause any breakage if I use in high heat in microwave or in the oven?
                                                                                And, 2 of the them has more "black" color when the others have more "green" color if you see the edge from top. Are they differ in glass composition, such as the soda-lime type, etc??
                                                                                Anyone has the same situations? Thanks.

                                                                                1. My dad worked for Corning. Needless to say my mother used corningware all the time. She used both the white corningware and pyrex, but mostly the white.

                                                                                  I started buying cookware in the mid '90's and I bought pyrex because it was affordable, and it's what my Mom used. I did have one bad experience with it shattering, but it was clearly my fault.

                                                                                  If you read the "Warnings" that come with Pyrex, the very first one states: "NEVER USE ON TOP OF STOVE," and the second is: "AVOID SEVERE TEMPERATURE CHANGES."

                                                                                  In my incident, I had the casserole dish on the stove top, but it was not turned on. I was making my first Thanksgiving dinner and I was putting together a sweet potato casserole. There were several people in the kitchen. Someone turned on a stove burner, and we realized it was mistakenly the wrong one when we smelled something burning and noticed the sweet potato casserole was sizzling. We quickly turned it off, and I left the casserole sitting on the stovetop while I waited for room for it to fit in the oven. Luckily there was no one in the kitchen when we heard a pop. When I went out to the kitchen, I had a mess. It was clearly due to the fact that we had broken both of the warnings. It was heated extremely on the stovetop and it shattered when it cooled. I still have all of my other pyrex. I still use it and I still buy new. I just never set it on the stovetop or a cool counter; I always use a hotpad or set in on the wooden cutting board. When reading several of these posts it said that the shattering occured after setting in on the stovetop. I have to wonder, had the burners been used recently?

                                                                                  25 Replies
                                                                                  1. re: ace117

                                                                                    I believe that some cases of shattering occurred in situations where the pan was used correctly. And another problem is that it is so easy to use it incorrectly.

                                                                                    I limit the use of Pyrex to the microwave, where it seems to perform well. I just pitched 2 1 C measures which looked awful (maybe 'bruised') and replaced with new. But I only use the stuff for measuring or microwaving.

                                                                                    1. re: ace117

                                                                                      ace - I dislike these kinds of posts, because they tend to ignore the comments from people who had bad experiences with pyrex exploding and who claimed they had used the pans correctly (yes, as in my own experience.)

                                                                                      It's not only intellectually dishonest to ignore and casually discard those experiences and testimony which apparently conflict with and complicate your personal view of things, it also potentially endangers others who may walk away from reading posts such as yours feeling smugly self-confidant that if they only obey the "warnings", they have nothing at all to worry about. And it's just not true.

                                                                                      1. re: flourgirl

                                                                                        I'm going to use the buying a new car analogy "Your Mileage May Vary". It is fair to say that SOME folks have had a problem - exploding cookware, breakage, etc. While others have not had problems. Now whether the instance of a problem is due to something the person did or did not do, or nature of their surroundings, the equipment or conditions of their kitchens, the age, makeup or condition or treatment of the cookware, or other stuff I can't think of to mention -- all of it is part of the debate, hence this long message stream. To acknowledge that some folks have had a problem is not the same as denying that there are some 371 million pieces of the cookware out there in the world. To acknowledge that there are some 371 million pieces of the cookware out there in the world - and that plenty of people found the cookware to be useful - durable - folks who in some cases have had long histories with the cookware - simply is not the same thing as denying that some folks have had problems. It is simply that "your mileage may vary". In a pure statistical sense - yes - some folks will have problems (it is glass cookware after all), and yes some folks - plenty of folks won't have problems. However there is a sense that "most people" don't have problems or don't report a problem. There is also the issue of the echo chamber called the "internet" and news media had NEEDS problems, and stuff to report about. Those are discussions for another time. Again, to report that there are 371 million pieces of the cookware out there in the world - meaning that somebody's using it - is not the same as denying that some folks have had problems. To report that some folks have had problems is not to deny that some folks, maybe plenty of folks have not had problems. Again, your mileage may vary.

                                                                                        1. re: Michael549

                                                                                          Excellent point. I think this is something that many people often lack the insight or the objectivity to understand. Cookware like glassware or enameled cast iron are fragile when compared to metal bakeware or cookware. Many people here have the problem of projecting oneself experience to everyone. They will claim that because they have excellent experience (or horrible experience) with a particular cookware and therefore everyone must have the same. Frankly, that does not make any sense.

                                                                                          I will use another car example: the sudden unintended acceleration. This is made most famous by the recent 2009-2010 Toyota (but this also happened to GM cars as well, so I am not trying to bash Toyota here). In 2010, Toyota sold 1,763,595 cars. The greatest number of sudden unintended acceleration reports for Toyota was in 2010 for 4000+ incidents. 4000 sounds like a lot and it is, but that is still 0.2% compared to car sold. So would you say that unintended car acceleration is not real because you personally have not experienced it?

                                                                                          Frankly people need to understand there is a concept of "percentage of occurrence", which literally means something happen sometime to some people, but not every time to everyone. Probability is not just "0" and "1".

                                                                                          1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                                                                                            Another car analog is windshields. All windshields are made of glass, and can break if hit by a rock, and small cracks or chips can spread due to thermal stress (uneven heating or cooling). But if a manufacturer issues as TSB related the windshield (e.g. make sure the mounting surface is smooth when replacing the glass), that brand or model can acquire an undeserved reputation for bad windshields - even though most cracks are due to random rock hits, not a manufacturing problem.

                                                                                            1. re: paulj

                                                                                              Paulj

                                                                                              Way better than my analogy since it is a glass to glass comparison.

                                                                                              1. re: paulj

                                                                                                I don't know of any way to drive a car with a metal windshield. You have to have a glass one to see through as you drive. However, you can CHOOSE to use or not use Pyrex brand glassware. There are many other bakeware options, from several different materials. All the arguments in the world about the relatively few who have incidents does not diminish the fact that many people have had incidents, and that these incidents are preventable.

                                                                                                If you are willing to be totally vigilant with your Pyrex, and you can safely ensure that any visitors to your kitchen are totally vigilant, then I suppose using Pyrex works for you. My point is simply, why take a chance?

                                                                                                1. re: sueatmo

                                                                                                  "All the arguments in the world about the relatively few who have incidents does not diminish the fact that many people have had incidents"

                                                                                                  Not trying to diminish anything. Just trying to tell people on both sides do not accuse the other side of lying. Everyone should understand that most Pyrex glassware do not shattered. Yet, for the few incidents reported, they are real and not to be dismissed.

                                                                                                  Unfortunately, the Pro-Pyrex glassware people simply dismiss all of the reports as "user mistakes" and the Con-Pryrex glassware people make it sounds like they are ticking bombs -- bound to shatter and break for everyone sooner or later.

                                                                                                  Worst. I see this very often in the Le Cresuset enameled cast iron cookware. The Pro Le Cresuet people always use their own positive personal experience for universal justification. Any others who claimed to have problems Le Cresuet were told that they do not know how to use the cookware or that they lied or that they have alternative schemes. They always say "Well, my Le Cresuet lasted for 50 years with no problem." Well, that is your experience, but it does not prove it can happen to everyone.

                                                                                                  I have also see dinosaur fossil bones from 100+ millions years ago as well. Does that prove every dinosaur bones get fossilized and all of them survived millions years ago. The truth is an extremely small fraction of bones ever get fossilized and even small can survived through millions of years.

                                                                                            2. re: Michael549

                                                                                              The issue isn't with every piece of Pyrex ever produced, it's about Pyrex produced since it's composition change.

                                                                                              This isn't the same Pyrex most of our parents used.

                                                                                              For a car analogy, old school Pyrex is a Checker Cab, new Pyrex is a Yugo.

                                                                                              1. re: SanityRemoved

                                                                                                If I understand the time line correctly, the change in glass happened about 40 years ago, before the brand Pyrex was sold by Corning.So most of the glass out there in use now is the newer stuff. I used Pyrex baking pans, but decided about a decade ago that I didn't like using them: they take up too much room on the table, they are hard to get really clean, glass isn't the best heat conductor. So I got rid of them. But I am old enough to be a parent for an awful lot of Hounds. I probably never used any but the newer stuff.

                                                                                                1. re: sueatmo

                                                                                                  Dating the change is difficult because of two things, if Corning divulges the date of change then it may effect their name licensing agreement with World Kitchen and World Kitchen would like consumers to believe that is was far before they licensed the name rights from Corning.

                                                                                                  An executive scientist for Corning stated that at the time of his retirement in 1987 Corning was still using borosilicate glass to make Pyrex. World Kitchen took over production in 1998. So a rough estimate could put it from 1987-1998. But the truth may never be known.

                                                                                                  1. re: SanityRemoved

                                                                                                    My understanding is a bit more convoluted. I don't think World Kitchen lied when it stated that Corning was using lime soda glass before the Pyrex brand was sold to World Kitchen. Maybe misleading, but not outright lies.

                                                                                                    Most likely, Corning was using both borosilicate and tempered lime soda glass for their cookware, bakeware and general glassware. Corning definitely used borosilicate for the high temperature ones, and may use the lime soda glass for glassware container. Upon buying the Pyrex brand, World Kitchen switched completely to soda lime glass.

                                                                                                    1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                                                                                                      I seem to remember in a CU article that soda glass was used well before World Kitchen bought the rights.

                                                                                              2. re: Michael549

                                                                                                Statements like this: "When reading several of these posts it said that the shattering occured after setting in on the stovetop. I have to wonder, had the burners been used recently?" - while not an explicit denial that anybody has ever had a problem with exploding Pyrex due to normal use, do insinuate as much. 2 things seem clear: 1. the vast majority of Pyrex users have never and will never experience a problem with it exploding and, 2. Some Pyrex users have experienced it exploding and not always in situations that could clearly be labeled 'incorrect usage'. Even my own case, which I conceded was most likely technically my fault - I put the pan on a warm stovetop, not on a burner, and either way, no burners had been on recently - the stovetop was warm from the oven being on.

                                                                                                The 'YMMV' part isn't about making a call on whether or not this is happening - clearly it is, and clearly it is happening to statistically small numbers of people. The YMMV part comes in when it comes to the point where one must choose to use or not use this cookware based on this small likelihood of a problem. Everyone's own assessment of risk and the willingness to take it will be personal. For me, personally, the risk is too high. I am well aware the odds of this happening again are very low, but the reason I choose to no longer use Pyrex is because a)the problem, IF it occurs, is one that could be very dangerous - this isn't a cracked pan, it's an exploding pan and b)there are children and pets in my kitchen a lot - the risk level I am willing to tolerate with them is much, much smaller than that to myself. There are also, very often, adults who are unaware of the Pyrex handling rules in my kitchen.

                                                                                                I don't know, I just bristle at the tone of some of these posts, especially the repeated contention that some people are using anecdote/personal experience to extrapolate incorrect info (i.e. this happened to me, therefore it must be very likely to happen to everyone else) - that simply isn't true. I don't think a single person in this thread, even the Pyrex haters, would argue that this is "likely" to happen. It isn't. We get that. It is VERY unlikely to happen. Understood. I choose not to take what I acknowledge is a tiny risk.

                                                                                                1. re: montrealeater

                                                                                                  Exactly. Pyrex is neither the only, nor the best baking option. Why take the chance?

                                                                                                  1. re: sueatmo

                                                                                                    Exactly. I know I personally never once stated that I expected this to be a likely occurance for all pyrex users - it's the possibility that it can happen, even with correct usage of the material, that says, to me at least, that it doesn't really make a lot of sense to keep using the material when there are other, safer and better alternatives.

                                                                                                    1. re: flourgirl

                                                                                                      Funny, but the other day when I had several alternative pans to a Pyrex 8x13 pan, I picked up the pyrex. Why does one do that after hearing the admonitions?; habit, I guess.

                                                                                                      I'll try better next time - hopefully. And, why not?

                                                                                                      1. re: Rella

                                                                                                        I have to admit, I still have a few pyrex pans - i don't use them in the oven any more, I mostly use them for stuff like marinating - but one of them is the perfect-sized pan for dishes like enchiladas, etc, and I don't have another pan in a different material that is just this size. It's very tempting to go ahead and use it - but every time I think of that pan exploding in my oven, I pass it over & make do with something else.

                                                                                                        1. re: flourgirl

                                                                                                          I am in the same boat with pie pans. Something has happened to the stainless pie pans I had for years. They have disappeared. I have 2 Pyrex and 1 Corning. I have had the Corning since my marriage shower--41 years. The Pyrex pans are used in the microwave, and I consider them ideal for this purpose. I will never put them into the oven again. But I haven't bought a new one to replace. I don't make pies often, so it easy to put off doing so.

                                                                                                          I don't like Pyrex bakers because they are large and unwieldy, and take up too much room on the table, if brought there. And now, there is this understanding that they might shatter. I have actually had a pie plate break after a time in the oven. You know, this is just another reason(excuse) to visit Home Goods and have a look around! Purely for a pie pan, of course! ; D

                                                                                                          1. re: sueatmo

                                                                                                            But of course, there's the "what-to-do-about" the 10" pyrex glass pie baker. I will still use it, I guess --

                                                                                                            1. re: Rella

                                                                                                              a pyrex pie dish makes, hands-down, the best pie crust anywhere (and I can look and see to make sure it's done). Cooks Illustrated did a review of pie plates back in the late nineties, early 00s, and came to the same conclusion.

                                                                                                              I know there's a risk, but I also understand things like thermal shock and the ability for chips and dings to cause shattering...and I am willing to accept that risk.

                                                                                                              1. re: sunshine842

                                                                                                                And then there are also those bread pans, the ones that cooks usually use to make a carrot cake loaf, or bread loaves, or probably mostly quick bread loaves. They are great for meatloaf, too. I use them seldom, but I do use them.

                                                                                                                1. re: sunshine842

                                                                                                                  I agree. I have not yet had a problem with pyrex in the oven, but once I became aware of the problem I began putting a metal sheet pan under anything I bake in pyrex. If a pan should break, most of the mess would be contained.

                                                                                                                  My pieces are probably all from the pre-World Kitchen era, but the clear glass round casseroles have lots of scratches from knives and serving spoons, and that can ruin the integrity regardless of composition.

                                                                                                                2. re: Rella

                                                                                                                  I've gone to white ceramic or stoneware bakeware. Much prettier when brought to the table. I have a small lidded vessel and a very nice deep, oval baker. I can't believe I used to use flat old ugly glass bakers.

                                                                                                                  I don't know which sort of pie pan I'm going to choose. I will continue to use my Corning Ware pie pan. I think the glass pie pans are wonderful for use in the microwave.

                                                                                                      2. re: montrealeater

                                                                                                        I sat my dish on the cook top because it was not cold. No, the burner had not been on all day. In fact I had folded a towel in half and put that on the top before placing the dish on the stove.

                                                                                                        Like you, I find the tone of some of these messages very annoying. I am intelligent enough to understand the effects of a cold surface on hot glass and to be told I don't, is very annoying.

                                                                                                        I don't hate Pyrex, in fact I'm pretty bummed that I cannot use it anymore. Like you said, the chances are slim....but I've been there, done that and won't risk it again.

                                                                                                2. I wanted to take the time to reply with my recent experience with a shattering Pyrex dish.

                                                                                                  We were having stuffed porkchops and whereas most stories I read about include quickly moving the dish from one temperature to an extremely different temperature - in my situation the dish had been in the oven for 10 minutes at 375 degrees. The dish was put in after the oven (A Bosch electric free-standing oven) had pre-heated completely.

                                                                                                  I sent an e-mail to Pyrex using their Contact Us form on their website and received a response the following morning asking me to give their customer care line a call. I called in and the representative that I worked with was sincerely concerned about our safety and was sympathetic to the food that we had lost (We managed to save the porkchops, but there were glass shards in another dish that was in the oven.

                                                                                                  Pyrex is sending out a replacement and I'll have no problem using it, I understand that this does happen from time to time. I've used them for many years without incident until now. Great customer service.

                                                                                                  1. I know this is a somewhat old thread, but I found it by searching after what just happened to me about a half hour ago. I bought a bunch of Anchor Hocking containers from Crate and Barrel today and washed them in my dishwasher. The dishwasher has a heated dry, which I used, but I can't imagine it's more than 200 degrees. I feel very lucky as basically what happened was I was taking each of them out, drying the container and lid and putting them on my kitchen table. I got done and then started drying the silicone that I had taken off of each before putting in the dishwasher. While doing this, one of the large ones (8"x8") that was just a few feet from where I was standing, exploded, throwing glass several feet in most directions. Thankfully I wasn't hit, and most of the glass ended up in the container, although there was also some on the table and the floor surrounding - up to probably 5 or so feet away.

                                                                                                    I called Crate and Barrel and told them about it and they are going to have customer support call me back in the next day or two. But now I'm really nervous about using any of these containers. I've actually had the smallest size of these for at least a year and have had no problems with it despite many dishwashing sessions. I've never used them to cook things, but I do have a glass baking dish from Ikea that I've used many times without issue. Now I'm starting to get nervous about that as well!

                                                                                                    It's really a bummer because I was so excited to start using glass as an alternative to glastic containers, at least to store food in the fridge, and now I'm not even sure I'm comfortable doing that! Ugh!

                                                                                                     
                                                                                                    12 Replies
                                                                                                    1. re: dvdmon

                                                                                                      I don't use glass for the oven any more. I have dishwashed Pyrex pie pans for years with no incident. I think you are justified in trying to get your money back. It is possible that your Anchor Hocking piece was defective.

                                                                                                      If the piece shatters or explodes with normal kitchen use, or there is a chance it might, then why take that chance?

                                                                                                      You know, you can reuse glass jars for storage, the straight sided ones that peanut butter comes in. Or even sizable pickle jars. The glass in these is sturdy and should give good service. I recognize they aren't shaped exactly right, but is convenience worth the chance of flying glass injury?

                                                                                                      I admit, I use plastic for storage. For the oven I use stoneware or ceramic products.

                                                                                                      1. re: dvdmon

                                                                                                        This seems like an ordinary case of exposure to thermal shock to me — mishandling, not necessarily a defect. When you use the heated dry cycle on a dishwasher, you should let the contents cool before handling. Likewise when you use the oven. I always let pies cool slowly in the oven before removing them.

                                                                                                        Tempered glass bakeware is safe when properly handled. I have used both Anchor Hocking and Pyrex bakeware for many years without incident. Sometimes a piece of glass bakeware will shatter from thermal shock, due to internal stresses, but "explode" is not the correct term. The effect is exactly the same as when tempered glass is dropped on a hard surface — small pieces get thrown around a space of a few feet. I broke a glass lid this way a couple of months ago and I'm still finding pieces. That's what glass does.

                                                                                                        1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                          Who cares what the correct term is? When sharp edged pieces of glass get thrown around at high speed, most people aren't too concerned with using the correct terminology. Flying glass is flying glass, and unless you've personally experienced one of these pans "exploding" than you really don't understand how scary and potentially dangerous it can be.

                                                                                                          1. re: flourgirl

                                                                                                            The fact is that the fragments which result brom shattered tempered glass are smaller, less sharp, and hence less dangerous than the large shards that result from breaking other types of glass. That's why it is used for bakeware. And they don't travel at "high speed" because there is no explosive force behind them, despite what some describe as an "explosion."

                                                                                                            1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                              The fragments in flourgirl's picture do look like the glass I sometimes see at a car crash sites. It's the tempered glass that shatters thoroughly, but into cubes, not splinters. Such a breakage can be disconcerting, but isn't nearly as dangerous as ordinary glass.

                                                                                                              My guess is that the glass was still hot from the washer. I don't think it should raise concerns about use as cold food storage.

                                                                                                              1. re: paulj

                                                                                                                The odd thing is that I've put smaller Anchor Hocking containers in our dishwasher a million times without any issue. I'm reading the directions more thoroughly and it says not to use it if there are any scratches, well, a few of the new ones have small scratches, so I wonder if they all need to go back now, ugh!

                                                                                                              2. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                I am going to inject my opinion regarding to flourgirl and yours (GH1618) comments. Seeing tempered glass shattered is pretty scary. However, broken pieces from tempered glass (like Pyrex) are much safer than those from other glasses. I have shattered a crystal glass in a hotel bathroom. Now, that is really scary because all the pieces are sharp, much sharper than pieces from tempered glass.

                                                                                                                So tempered glass is safer than normal glass in this respect.

                                                                                                                Nevertheless, if we don't limit ourselves to just glasses, then I would say any metal bakeware is safer than glass bakeware.

                                                                                                          2. re: dvdmon

                                                                                                            Since those fragments are contained in another dish, it appears that you nested a smaller dish into a larger one. It is probably the case that you therefore had, in effect, a double thickness of hot glass where the bottoms of the two containers contacted one another. This area would cool more slowly than the sides of the containers, which were not touching. That's a recipe for thermal shock.

                                                                                                            Also, if hot pyrex touches anything wet - even hot and wet - you can get thermal shock.

                                                                                                            1. re: greygarious

                                                                                                              Huh? First of all, this wasn't Pyrex. Second of all, the fragments are the LID that was placed on to container that it was supposed to be on. These were both removed from the same dishwasher at the same time and felt to be about the same temperature, and both were hand-dried before placing them on the table or placing the lid on the container.

                                                                                                              Sorry, just seems some people are intent on blaming the victim here, not sure exactly why. This is the first time this has EVER happened to me with any glass product and we use a lot of glass containers. Somehow this particular one, or maybe it's the brand, I don't know, seems to be particularly senstative or just not made well and prone to shatter. There seem to be a bunch of complaints out there specifically about Anchor Hocking, whereas other brands don't seem to have anything...

                                                                                                              1. re: dvdmon

                                                                                                                <There seem to be a bunch of complaints out there specifically about Anchor Hocking, whereas other brands don't seem to have anything...>

                                                                                                                I am pretty sure that Pyrex has a lot more attention in term of glass shattering.

                                                                                                                http://www.consumeraffairs.com/homeow...

                                                                                                                1. re: dvdmon

                                                                                                                  Okay, that makes more sense. You mentioned silicone so I thought the lids were silicone. It's probably still a matter of temperature difference - perhaps hot air from still-warm glass being trapped inside the container, vs. cooler room air. Nobody's trying to blame the victim. I've had breakage too, before I learned how delicately these containers need to be treated. Brand isn't so much the issue; it's the thermal sensitivity of the glass.

                                                                                                                  As I posted on other occasions, I use Glass-Lock storage containers for baking, although they are only made for freezer and microwave.
                                                                                                                  I set them - and ALL glass that's going into the oven - on a sheet pan before filling. If something did break, the food would be contained. They don't get moved off that sheet pan until it's been out of the oven for at least 5 minutes. And then they get put onto a dry trivet or towel. They get washed by hand. They've been through this dozens of times over several years and so far, so good, knock wood.

                                                                                                            2. My Pyrex 4 cup measuring cup handle melted in the microwave when it became wedged against the inside wall to the microwave oven. It's ugly, but it still works and until it breaks I won't replace it.

                                                                                                               
                                                                                                              1. Looks like retailers are listening and reading up on consumer concerns. Luminarc bakeware, which is the manufacturer of European Pyrex, is available at Target and Bed Bath and Beyond. Thanks to this very informative post I got rid of all my old glassware and changed it out for Luminarc and Corningware's vitroceramic/pryoceram which they now have available in their outlets and online. However, there is not much of a selection so get the word out that there are safer alternatives back on the market. We asked for it and retailers are coming through, but if there is not demand for these types of cookware they'll take it right back off the market. That would be a travesty.

                                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                                1. re: jaky333

                                                                                                                  Thanks for the information.. You are right. Luminarc bakeware is using the borosilicate

                                                                                                                  "Take your cooking to the next level with this Luminarc 9"x13" baking pan. Made with borosilicate glass, it is break-resistant and shatterproof. It prov... "

                                                                                                                  http://www.target.com/s?searchTerm=Lu...

                                                                                                                  <there is not much of a selection so get the word out that there are safer alternatives back on the market>

                                                                                                                  Just to clarify, it is believed that borosilicate glass is better than soda lime glass against thermal shock, but tempered soda lime glass may be better than borosilicate glass against physical damage. So I cannot be sure which is more safe.

                                                                                                                  I may just get one for the heck of it (for fun).

                                                                                                                  1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                                                                                                                    Good point about physical damage versus thermal shock.

                                                                                                                    After reading all the post and consumer reports it seems like going for thermal shock resistance is a better choice in my mind. I'm no scientist, but if thermal tension builds up after use as some posts are saying how can I gauge when that tension has reached its threshold and will break the glass apart? I envision one of the kids walking by and getting a face full of airborne glass unexpectedly, a possibility that I don't want to see realized. With physical damage I feel like I can better prepare by not dropping or bumping it.

                                                                                                                    My choice pick is definitely the vitroceramic/pyroceram. If its good enough for the space shuttle its good enough for lasagna. :) If it will last as long as the 50 years touted I'm all for it.

                                                                                                                    Luminarc also states that they do rigorous stress tests on the luminarc.us website. So if I accidentally place a hot pan on an unseen wet spot they say it won't break.

                                                                                                                    Happy shopping...

                                                                                                                2. I had read the consumer reports article but continued to use one dish with caution. Easter I cooked a prime rib in the lasagna dish and removed it from the oven. I purposely put it on top of the stove (without the burners on) to cool. I kept in mind that rapid temp changes could cause a problem. The stove top was warm due to the oven being on and so the dish did not experience the rapid change due to being put on a counter top. That said, aprox 5-10 min later the dish exploded. Glass flew at least 10 feet and thankfully I was the only one in the path. I ended up with a 2 inch gash on my leg but I was so glad my daughter had just left the room. Some of the glass pieces resembled safety glass when it breaks, but a few looked like 6 in long knives. Needless to say, there will never be Pyrex in my home again. Back to metal bakeware for me.

                                                                                                                  2 Replies
                                                                                                                  1. re: tammyjk1021

                                                                                                                    I am very sorry to hear that you were hurt that badly. I had the same experience when my pyrex explosion happened - some of the pieces looked like broken safety glass - but many of them had very sharp edges and could have caused a lot of damage if anyone had been hit by one of those pieces. I will never use pyrex again - other than my measuring cups - and if I have to pour hot liquids into them, I do so in the sink.

                                                                                                                    1. re: tammyjk1021

                                                                                                                      Again, this is user error. The difference in temperature between a hot oven and a "warm" stovetop from the oven being on is around 300F. I'm not surprised your pyrex broke.

                                                                                                                    2. I know this is an old thread, but I found it after a search this morning and wanted to add my experience in case it helps someone. My Pyrex mixing bowl shattered in my hands while I was washing it in the sink. I have a small gash in my hand and several cuts on my fingers, so I'm now searching for baking dishes and mixing bowls to replace everything Pyrex in my home.

                                                                                                                      The bowl wasn't heated other than using hot water from the tap to wash it - it was used to mix ingredients for banana bread. I wouldn't be surprised if it tapped the enameled cast iron sink because it's the large-size mixing bowl and a normal-sized sink, but I didn't notice any impact.

                                                                                                                      Now, I've used this mixing bowl often in the 11 years I've owned it and this is the first time it's exploded ;) but I'd rather own items not prone to exploding/shattering at all. Just my two cents. I'll be at a Home Goods store this evening looking for stoneware bakers and steel mixing bowls.

                                                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                                                      1. re: SAHCook

                                                                                                                        The fracture could have been started some time previous to the shattering.

                                                                                                                      2. 6/24/13 I have used my Pyrex backing dish for a year now and yesterday it exploded after taking a cake out of the oven and placing it on my stove. I could not believe the cost of a $13 dollar dish could do! It melted my flooring and had splinters of glass in my dogs paws. I am looking at $7000 to remove glass from there paws and replace my flooring. I flat out will never buy glass cookware ever again!

                                                                                                                        13 Replies
                                                                                                                        1. re: jbg21

                                                                                                                          Sorry that happened. I hope the dogs didn't swallow any shards while trying to gobble the cake, though if they did, the cake should cushion the sharp edges somewhat. Keep an eye out for blood in their stool and signs of gut pain.

                                                                                                                          Sounds as though there may have been a little water on your stove top. My introduction to Pyrex failure was with a casserole dish used for cooking frozen peas in the microwave. The counter had a wet spot. No injury or serious damage, fortunately. I do still use Pyrex but am now extremely careful. I set hot Pyrex down only on a dry towel or a cooling rack, and when baking, keep the Pyrex on a sheet pan all the way through the process, from filling to cooling.

                                                                                                                          1. re: jbg21

                                                                                                                            The only way it could melt your flooring is if you took it out of the oven as soon as it was done cooking without waiting for it to cool down a bit first. Not a good idea, as you found out.

                                                                                                                            An iron pan will also melt your flooring if you drop it when it is still very hot.

                                                                                                                            1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                              Are you saying that you leave a dish in the oven after the food is done? For how long do you let it sit?

                                                                                                                              I use glass casserole pans frequently and haven't yet had a bad experience taking them out when food is done and then letting them rest on the stove top for a while.

                                                                                                                              1. re: tcamp

                                                                                                                                I've never (in several decades of very active cooking/baking) left a Pyrex dish in the oven after baking -- it results in dried-out, overcooked food.

                                                                                                                                I've also never seen a recipe or publication from Anchor/Corning/Pyrex saying this was necessary.

                                                                                                                                I set any sort of vitreous cookware on a hotpad of some sort, whether it be a cork trivet, a *DRY* folded dish towel, or a cooling rack, so there is no thermal shock.

                                                                                                                                1. re: sunshine842

                                                                                                                                  It may not be strictly necessary according to the book, but it does lower the thermal shock, so reduces the liklihood of seemingly spontaneous fracture, which some people experience. I expect any excessive drying out could easily be compensated for. I've never noticed a problem, but I only do a few things in glassware.

                                                                                                                                2. re: tcamp

                                                                                                                                  I do leave my Pyrex pie plates in the oven after the pie is done. I turn off the heat and leave the door ajar, not wide open. The oven goes below cooking temperature quickly and the pans reach a safe temperature in just a few minutes. I don't time it. Then I set them out on a dry towel.

                                                                                                                              2. re: jbg21

                                                                                                                                Hot baking dish directly on the metal stove top? Not on a hot pad of any sort? The fact that the shards melting the flooring means they were still quite hot.

                                                                                                                                Cooling hot glass quickly is the surest way to make it crack.

                                                                                                                                1. re: jbg21

                                                                                                                                  Melted the floor? What type of flooring do you have? Geez. Can you post a picture? I'd be very interested to see it. I have used Pyrex and Corning for years and never had a problem but this is crazy! What was the oven temp for the cake? Wow.

                                                                                                                                  I am curious if people put their dishes on smooth surface cooktops or countertops where there is 100% contact between the bottom of the pan and the surface.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: Jerseygirl111

                                                                                                                                    <I am curious if people put their dishes on smooth surface cooktops or countertops where there is 100% contact between the bottom of the pan and the surface.>

                                                                                                                                    I did - both - until my first experience, when a casserole shattered upon placement on a counter with a wet spot. At the time I did not know about thermal shock. I even tried heating strawberry glaze in a pyrex measuring cup on the cooktop.....learned the hard way and spent a week getting the cooktop clean. It seems many if not most people do not know about the limits and dangers of vitreous cookware until their luck runs out. Now, if a cooking vessel is not metal, I handle it with extra caution.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: greygarious

                                                                                                                                      There was a time when clay and earthenware pots were a standard part of kitchen equipment. Traditional forms that we can still buy include Chinese sand pots, Spanish cazuelas, tagines, clay comal (tortilla griddles), bean pots, etc. With care those can be used on a stove, especially a flame, or oven. But cooks quickly learned to heat them gently, and let them cool even more gently.

                                                                                                                                      Earthenware was much cheaper than metal, and more suited to braising and long low simmering.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: paulj

                                                                                                                                        and those can crack or split, too, if not handled carefully.

                                                                                                                                        Not a whole lot safer, either, especially if it dumps a pot full of lava-hot food all over the kitchen, and anyone who happens to be standing too close when it gives (same goes for pets and kids in the kitchen)

                                                                                                                                      2. re: greygarious

                                                                                                                                        Yeah. I am wondering if the chances of shattering rises in proportion to the percentage of contact between the surfaces. For instance, if I have my Pyrex 13x9 in a 350 degree oven then place it (full contact) on my cold stone countertop is there a better chance of cracking than if I put it on my cold gas stove burner grate (say 5% surface contact)?

                                                                                                                                        1. re: Jerseygirl111

                                                                                                                                          I think the most common (though not the only) cause of shattering is a rapid temperature shift -- so more surface area would (all other things equal) lead to more likelihood of shattering.

                                                                                                                                          Actually, if I remember the heat transfer equations from my days as a chemical engineering undergrad 35 years ago, the rate of cooling of the dish put on a cold surface will be proportional to (surface area x thermal conductivity x temperature differential) / (density of the material x heat capacity of the material).

                                                                                                                                  2. Wow, cannot believe the number of "you're doing it wrong" posts.

                                                                                                                                    Personally, I try to only use borosilicate glassware for anything hot. I think that claims of soda lime glass having increased physical shock resistance is a misdirect

                                                                                                                                    The difference in shock resistance is marginal and the true reason for switching to soda lime glass is the non-marginal difference in manufacturing price. Borosilicate still has a very good mechanical strength.

                                                                                                                                    Frankly, if I drop glass, I don't mind if it breaks. At least I'll be expecting it.

                                                                                                                                    Borosilicate is superior in every other respect than price - shatter resistance, thermal shock resistance, melting point, etc. When it does break, it tends to do it in large pieces rather than shatter into tiny shards (like tempered soda lime) - much easier to clean, though possibly sharper on the edge.

                                                                                                                                    Anyway, there's a reason why laboratory glass is almost exclusively borosilicate.

                                                                                                                                    There are myriad sources for all of the above but here's a university chem lab's glass shop:
                                                                                                                                    http://www.udel.edu/chem/GlassShop/Ph...

                                                                                                                                    1. Yesterday, I poured boiling water in a pyrex measuring cup like I've been doing for the past couple of weeks to warm baby milk bottles.

                                                                                                                                      The cup exploded in a thousand sharp pieces, hitting the walls and ceiling. Very luckily, I was wearing glasses and didn't have the baby in my arms as it happens often.

                                                                                                                                      Even after vacuuming There are still hidden microscopic pieces and my girlfriend just got one in her foot.

                                                                                                                                      I had no idea that could happen!!

                                                                                                                                      Note. This measuring cup was cheap and bought recently, probably made in China. Not old pyrex from the 80s

                                                                                                                                      4 Replies
                                                                                                                                        1. re: hinduf

                                                                                                                                          This is why I always put a metal spoon in my glassware and even my mugs when putting hot liquid. My friends can laugh all they want. From what I was told the metal conducts or absorbs the heat so the glass won't shatter. Perhaps this is all bunk?

                                                                                                                                          1. re: melpy

                                                                                                                                            Honestly, I don't think the spoon will protect you.

                                                                                                                                          2. re: hinduf

                                                                                                                                            That happened to me too. I bought an Anchor Hocking measuring cup from Target and poured hot water from a kettle into it to mix with powdered gelatin. It was sitting on a butcher block counter top when I did this. I picked it up and the damn thing shattered dramatically in my hand.

                                                                                                                                            I've never had a problem with older Pyrex pieces, but I certainly won't be buying any more.

                                                                                                                                          3. This just happened to me and I posted this Amazon review (copied below). Hopefully it will help someone else looking for information on this issue...

                                                                                                                                            THIS DISH LITERALLY EXPLODED IN MY OVEN WHILE I WAS READING REVIEWS ABOUT "NEW" PYREX EXPLODING!

                                                                                                                                            I wish I was joking! While roasting chicken thighs and carrots in the oven, I decided to order another Pyrex measuring cup. Skimming though the reviews I noticed several reviewers mentioning that Pyrex isn't "Pyrex" anymore (i.e. borosilicate glass), but had been sold to another company and is now cheaper lime soda glass, which apparently has a tendency to shatter violently when moved between environments of different temperatures (news to me). So with 45 minutes or so to kill, I read some reviews which mention a Consumer Reports article from 2011, then I read the Snopes page (you can Google it), then I read the Chowhound thread (also, Google it), then I mentioned the whole thing to my girlfriend and how it's still borosilicate in Europe, and that people are probably overreacting either way, or they're taking it from an oven and sticking it right in freezer or something silly like that. Then I take a peek in the oven to check on my carrots; looking good, so far …then a couple minutes later ...POW! And now there are shards of glass in the carrots (or more accurately, carrots in a pile of glass), in the chicken, and all over the bottom (and maybe even the top, I'm not sure yet), of the oven. So it 1:30am, and in lieu of dinner, I'm writing this review.

                                                                                                                                            Still, I consider myself lucky after reading some people's stories of these things exploding on the counter top like shrapnel grenades. It is no joke. I wasn't resting it on a cold granite countertop or anything like that. It had been at room temperature in a normal cabinet before going in the oven. It contained room temperature carrots drizzled in room temperature olive oil. It was in the oven at 350 degrees, and had been for about 40 minutes — and then it exploded.

                                                                                                                                            This is my real name, I bought this set from Amazon on October 17, 2011, I am not a shill working for some competitor. I've never had a problem with Pyrex or any other cookware violently shattering before, however, I don't generally use the storage-type Pyrex dishes from this set to cook / bake / roast with (I usually use the larger ones), in fact this particular one (the 11-cup dish) hasn't had much use at all.

                                                                                                                                            Just be careful, judging from the sound, if I was standing in front of this thing when it shattered I'd probably be in the ER and not writing a review.

                                                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                            11 Replies
                                                                                                                                            1. re: seanfitzroy

                                                                                                                                              Very glad you weren't hurt! This was the exact same experience i had. I got rid of all my pyrex except for the measuring cups - and if i'm pouring anything hot in them, i do it while the cup is sitting in the sink.

                                                                                                                                              1. re: seanfitzroy

                                                                                                                                                I don't want to make excuses for such a tricky type of cookware, but even though you didn't put the dish on a cold countertop this appears to me to most likely be a classic case of Pyrex failure due to thermal shock. It's a similar scenario to others discussed on Chowhound about Pyrex failure when dry roasting. When cooking with Pyrex it's best to have enough liquid (or very moist food) to ensure that no part of the bottom of the dish goes dry. If there's liquid over the entire bottom then the temperature there can't be much over 212F (boiling point of water). But if part of the bottom goes dry then its temperature can approach that of the oven -- i.e. 350F in this case. When the skin of chicken reaches around 150-180F the fat starts rendering and you get liquid dripping off the chicken. (This is the point when you have to watch for flare-ups when cooking chicken on a grill.) So you have liquid at 150-180F contacting Pyrex at close to 350F...

                                                                                                                                                Anyway, I'm sorry about your experience. I do think Pyrex is too tricky for use in the kitchen -- I don't use mine much these days.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: drongo

                                                                                                                                                  drongo, you're definitely correct about the liquid (or lack of) potentially causing the shattering — it may have been that some of the oil had begin drying up, not necessarily dripping down.

                                                                                                                                                  Incidentally, I also posted this to Facebook and people I haven't heard from since middle school came out of the woodwork to say similar things happened to them. One person reported hers exploded while being stored in her kitchen cabinet. The material is definitely more temperamental than a lot of customers seem to be aware of — myself included.

                                                                                                                                                  I finally found photos of the official instructions uploaded to flickr (after searching to no avail on the World Kitchen site).

                                                                                                                                                  All things considered, it's probably easier and safer to use something else.

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: seanfitzroy

                                                                                                                                                    Yes! Why take chances on a material that is so temperamental? I don't understand why this material is not banned by a federal agency.

                                                                                                                                                    I admit I use measuring cups made of Pyrex, but I don't pour boiling liquid in them.

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: sueatmo

                                                                                                                                                      I agree with seanfitzroy that "it's probably easier and safer to use something else."

                                                                                                                                                      I don't think it should be banned by a federal agency because I don't want to encourage the "Nanny State".

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: drongo

                                                                                                                                                        I think World Kitchen should be forced at least to make a warning statement that cannot be missed about this cookware.

                                                                                                                                                        I don't think that is unreasonable.

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: sueatmo

                                                                                                                                                          I don't disagree with you.

                                                                                                                                                          And I think it's outrageous that they sell Pyrex "roasters" (e.g. http://www.shopworldkitchen.com/pyrex...) when there are such dangers associated with roasting in Pyrex -- i.e. the dripping of liquid onto hot surface. They do have an instruction that says "Always cover the bottom of the glass dish with liquid before cooking" but how many people see that? And they don't give guidance on how much liquid -- they don't say that you need enough so that it won't completely evaporate during cooking, but if you use that much liquid it's more steaming than roasting.

                                                                                                                                                      2. re: sueatmo

                                                                                                                                                        Nothing will change until someone is killed, the company is sued and there is overwhelming public outrage.

                                                                                                                                                        So far I have not experienced any issues and I continue to use my Pyrex and Corningware.

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Jerseygirl111

                                                                                                                                                          So, you are OK with the risk? Or maybe you don't bake with it?

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: sueatmo

                                                                                                                                                            I do use it all the time. About 90% of mine is all old stuff inherited from my mother, aunts and grandmother. Do you think that makes a difference? I make mac & cheese in the 13x9 which I do put under the broiler for a few minutes but otherwise I just use them in the oven. Meatloaf, chicken thighs, veggies all go in. I am careful not to put it down on anything wet when hot, but otherwise no, I guess I am not afraid. Honestly, I don't think about it at all when I am cooking.

                                                                                                                                                            Edited to add: Just realizing how much of this stuff I actually have. Sets and sets of primary color, gooseberry and amish butterprint mixing bowls, the cornflower casserole sets, custard dishes, roasters, all sizes of measuring cups, pyrex bakeware, oval dishes, pie plates. Wow, wow.

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Jerseygirl111

                                                                                                                                                              Pyrex is definitely not meant for the broiler. I would not do that. I have a small ceramic gratin dish that cracked in the toaster oven when it was set on broil. Too much heat too close to the dish is asking for trouble. I say that as someone who bakes in Glass-Lock containers that are not supposed to be used in the oven. I keep them on a metal sheet pan throughout the process, from filling to cooling, and knock wood have had no problems so far. Also, I do not put them in a dishwasher. It's my suspicion that rattling around in a dishwasher may shorten the lifespan of glass bakeware.

                                                                                                                                                2. I just had a similar experience and rushed to my computer to research this incident. My 4 cup Pyrex measuring cup just exploded in my hand, and I do mean exploded. I made some tea in it this morning. I placed it in the sink about 2 hours previously. When I picked it up to place it in the dishwasher, it exploded. Shards went everywhere up to 15 feet away. Thanks to gravity, it all went down and not into my eyes. The pieces of glass were all over my kitchen, and down the hall. I wish I had taken a picture. Words cannot describe this unless you have experienced it. I am in a quandary about what to do about my other Pyrex dishes. I use it exclusively for storage of leftovers because I was concerned about plastic products touching my food. This was very disturbing. I could have been blinded or seriously injured.

                                                                                                                                                  4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                  1. re: traceywilliams

                                                                                                                                                    Scary. Thankfully, you are okay.

                                                                                                                                                    Did you place the hot glass on cold or wet sink?

                                                                                                                                                    Yesterday I poured hot bacon grease into my glass measuring cup, so I could clean my frying pan, but I always let it cool somewhat before cleaning. No problem. (shrugs)

                                                                                                                                                    Too bad you didn't take pictures and notify the company. These are the types of things they need evidence of in order to make changes. If you can, take pictures of the pile of broken glass you cleaned up.

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Jerseygirl111

                                                                                                                                                      Read the post again - s/he says the Pyrex was sitting in the sink for 2 hours before being picked up.

                                                                                                                                                      According to other threads on this problem, World Kitchen, the current manufacturer, is well aware of the hundreds if not thousands of instances of shattering Pyrex and has always insisted the cause is user error. If they were to admit to structural problems, they'd be sued into oblivion.

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Jerseygirl111

                                                                                                                                                        I make my iced tea in the microwave. I always put it on the counter and let it brew awhile after I heat it for 4 minutes. I am not sure how long I left it on the counter, but the pyrex 4 cup measuring cup was not extremely hot when I put it in the sink. It may have been warm to the touch and the sink was probably wet.

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: traceywilliams

                                                                                                                                                          Warm to the touch is not enough for thermal shock, especially as even if the sink was wet, it wouldn't have been ice cold. What you did was no more stress on the cup than putting it into a dishpan with soapy water, and would not have caused the failure. The theory of Pyrex wear over time is that utensils cause tiny nicks which eventually compromise the integrity of the glass.

                                                                                                                                                    2. I was making a casserole and was using a Pyrex 8x8 baking dish at room temperature. 5 minutes later at a preheated 350 degrees I heard a startling bang. I opened the stove and the dish had shattered into pieces. I'm thankful that it didn't shatter while opening the oven and that my 2 year old wasn't nearby. I'm terrified to use these products now. I cook often and am a stay at home mom. I don't want to take a chance when using these products. I will be disposing all of my Pyrex products later.

                                                                                                                                                      1. I had a serious accident in February 2013. It was *not* thermal. I was washing a room-temperature Pyrex bowl in warm water, and it exploded. Shards went everywhere, including several parts of my body, but also all over the area requiring multiple cleanups and involving a few bottom-of the foot punctures. Worst was a big slash in one finger which has never completely healed.

                                                                                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                        1. re: mwhitmore

                                                                                                                                                          These tempered soda lime glass does not always explode at the time of the incident. It often breaks at a later time. In other words, something (physical or thermal) could have done the damage a week ago, and it gradually get weaker, and suddenly snap in a week later.

                                                                                                                                                          I hope you feel better.

                                                                                                                                                        2. In this video this guy is cooking in a glass dish and look what happens: ;-)

                                                                                                                                                          http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=eb4_13...

                                                                                                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Antilope

                                                                                                                                                            If only the sunlight wasn't so strong.....

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Antilope

                                                                                                                                                              Gosh. Glass bakeware with a concentrated heat source.

                                                                                                                                                              Nobody could have foreseen that.

                                                                                                                                                              *sprains eyeballs*

                                                                                                                                                            2. Happened to us this weekend and it's happened to me once before this. Never using them again and my mom plans to throw her's out.

                                                                                                                                                              Not only did sit make a huge mess when it exploded, the chards that fell on our linoleum ended up burning it in several places. It looks like someone died on our kitchen floor.

                                                                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                              1. I just put my Thanksgiving pumpkin pie in the oven in one of my Pyrex® pie plates. I've been doing it for 40 years and I'm not going to stop now.

                                                                                                                                                                27 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                                                                  I just took mine out. They look great. Always best in pyrex.

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                                                                    I'm with you. I have two pyrex pie pans and one ceramic one. All three are in use today.

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                                                                      My friend had one explode when she took it out of the oven this week. Thankfully her one and a half year old daughter wasn't near the oven when it did because it sent glass chards everywhere.

                                                                                                                                                                      Have fun playing roulette, folks!

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                                                                        Glass is great for pastry. If you're using decades pyrex, it's fine. Older stuff is borosilicate.

                                                                                                                                                                        For new stuff, you can still find borosilicate stuff out there - it's just not made by pyrex.

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: randomthoughts

                                                                                                                                                                          "Older stuff is borosilicate."

                                                                                                                                                                          A myth. Some is, some isn't. My two old pie dishes are clearly (pun intended) made of different glass, but I don't know which is which or if either is borosilicate. What I do know is that they both give excellent results.

                                                                                                                                                                          The reason that old Pyrex seems tougher is likely that the old glass with defects all broke long ago, before there was a web and forums to report such things.

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                                                                            You know, I'll bet you are right! In any case, I love my old pie plates.

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                                                                              Up to you I guess. I don't think it's easy to differentiate glass visually. They could look different and still both be borosilicate or soda lime.

                                                                                                                                                                              Edit: I guess I should state a source:
                                                                                                                                                                              http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/ma...

                                                                                                                                                                              "The American-made Pyrex and Anchor Hocking bakeware we tested, made from soda lime glass, shattered at lower temperatures in our tough heat tests than European-made pans, which are made of a more expensive glass, borosilicate. U.S. Pyrex and Anchor Hocking glass bakeware used to be made of borosilicate but no longer are."

                                                                                                                                                                              In general, I trust Consumer Reports. And Corning spokespeople are being remarkably cagey in their responses.

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: randomthoughts

                                                                                                                                                                                Corning spokespeople aren't involved at all, let alone in a "cagey" way. Corning hasn't made Pyrex in the US since they sold the brand to World Kitchens.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: CookingForReal

                                                                                                                                                                                  Hi, CFR:

                                                                                                                                                                                  Yes, they sold the brand to WK. The question is: Who makes Pyrex for World Kitchens?

                                                                                                                                                                                  I can see why Corning is being cagey. They spun off their Pyrex division to a company called Borden in 1998, and Borden invented the name World Kitchen in 2000 (Borden went Banko in 2002).

                                                                                                                                                                                  But another division of Corning, Keraglass/Eurokera, makes all the [shudder] Visions cookware sold exclusively by...WK.

                                                                                                                                                                                  Indeed, "Pyrex" is a trademark still owned by Corning, and licensed to WK.

                                                                                                                                                                                  So the water here is murkier than it appears. Another personal injury award or two like the recent one in Canada involving exploding wares, and World Kitchen, LLC will be OOB.

                                                                                                                                                                                  Aloha,
                                                                                                                                                                                  Kaleo

                                                                                                                                                                                  See, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_Ki...

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: kaleokahu

                                                                                                                                                                                    Pyrex is still made in the US in one of the original plants.

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                                                                                      That would be one of the original *Corning* plants, right?

                                                                                                                                                                                      It's like Tesoro and Shell Oil...

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: kaleokahu

                                                                                                                                                                                        Yes. I don't know what an oil company has to do with it.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                                                                                          Hi, GH:

                                                                                                                                                                                          Some companies change names on paper when it suits them legally (e.g., Tesoro takes over Shell refineries to avoid anti-trust scrutiny, Corning licenses "Pyrex" (in an effort) to put itself beyond American laws). Same facility, same products, same workers, same market, different name.

                                                                                                                                                                                          Aloha,
                                                                                                                                                                                          Kaleo

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: kaleokahu

                                                                                                                                                                                            That may the way lawyers look at it, but I suspect it is merely an economic consideration.

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                                                                                              Hi, GH:

                                                                                                                                                                                              It's *all* an economic consideration, that's the problem.

                                                                                                                                                                                              If borosilicate Pyrex was cheaper to make than soda lime Pyrex, this problem of exploding cookware would be far smaller. But since the opposite is true, you can defend a *lot* of product liability suits with the added profits from using a lesser, more accident-prone grade of glass.

                                                                                                                                                                                              One of our Seattle floating bridges used to have a very high incidence of head-on collisions. Many plaintiffs unsuccessfully sued the state DOT over the lack of a median barrier, until one day a plaintiff obtained an internal DOT study. Basically, the state decided--on "merely economic considerations"--that it cost it less to keep defending the lawsuits (and killing people) than it would to install a barrier. We now have a barrier as a result of daylighting what was really going on.

                                                                                                                                                                                              Few people react favorably when they learn of these infernal calculations which get used to excuse hurting other people. And you don't need to work with juries to understand why.

                                                                                                                                                                                              Aloha,
                                                                                                                                                                                              Kaleo

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: kaleokahu

                                                                                                                                                                                                Considering that the plant in Pennsylvania turns out about 40 million pieces per year, I don't think lawsuits are a blip on the radar. Reportedly there was a successful one in Canada, but I have been unable to find anything about it online.

                                                                                                                                                                                                By "economic," I mean that it was probably only a desire to focus on more profitable core businesses, rather than a fear of lawsuits, which led Corning to divest its consumer Pyrex.

                                                                                                                                                                                                Your remark about "hurting other people" doesn't get any traction with me, because tempered soda-lime glass is safer than borosilicate, despite a greater tendency to shatter under thermal shock.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                                                                                                  The Canadian lawsuit may be this one:

                                                                                                                                                                                                  http://www.smitiuchinjurylaw.com/Fall...

                                                                                                                                                                                                  That was a Corning Vision dutch oven. Vision is not the same glass as soda-lime bakeware, because it can be used on the stovetop. The nature of Mr. Stilwell's injuries illustrate why tempered soda-lime glass is safer — it breaks into small pieces instead of large razor-sharp shards.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                                                                                                    I guess I'd rather risk being accidentally cut by a knife than an exploding grenade...

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: kaleokahu

                                                                                                                                                                                                      So would I. But Pyrex bakeware does not explode like a grenade, it merely shatters. Exaggerations like this are the hallmark of a weak case.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hi, GH:

                                                                                                                                                                                                        You are funny. There are legion reports of explosions throwing Pyrex shards.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Here are about 1300 of them: http://www.consumeraffairs.com/homeow...

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Note that oven, cabinets, MWs and DWers (at least the ones that were closed at the time of the explosions) contained the shrapnel in many cases. But there are many other reported cases where the shards were thrown 12-15-20 feet. And also note the many cases where large, elongated pieces were involved; not the "windshield glass" fragments you imply always fall into harmless heaps.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Are all these people liars?

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Aloha,
                                                                                                                                                                                                        Kaleo

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: kaleokahu

                                                                                                                                                                                                          They are misusing the term "explosion." Show me a case where the oven door was ripped off its hinges, and I will say something exploded. A piece of bakeware shattering in the oven doesn't even bend the wire rack, from the pictures I have looked at.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          You compared the release of energy to a "grenade." That is hyperbole. Please put an actual grenade in your oven, set it to go off, and shut the oven door. Then post a picture of the result so we can all see the difference compared to tempered glass shattering from the release of internal stress.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hi, GH:

                                                                                                                                                                                                            No, they're using an accepted and common definition of 'explosion': "A violent and destructive shattering or blowing apart of something, as is caused by a bomb." http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/us/...

                                                                                                                                                                                                            The crux here is that when a Pyrex piece breaks into pieces, it can do so explosively, throwing shards of sharp material in a rather large radius. That fits my definition of a grenade, even if Pyrex is an unpredictable (and wimpy) grenade.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Aloha,
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Kaleo

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: kaleokahu

                                                                                                                                                                                                              A grenade is a small bomb. A piece of tempered glass with energy stored in internal stresses is not a bomb, and calling it one does not make it one.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Hi, GH:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                OK, now we're getting somewhere. I consider a Pyrex container with enough stored energy to explosively cut someone with its own fragments from 20 feet away to be both a small bomb and a grenade. Cf, George Orwell's equation of 'bomb' and 'grenade' in his "Homage to Catalonia".

                                                                                                                                                                                                                For you, apparently, a bomb would need to be powerful enough to remove an oven door to merit the term. The Russian PFM-1 "Green Parrot" would not qualify under your definition. Try convincing the thousands of Afghan children who lost hands, eyes and portions of feet to them beginning in 1979 that green parrots aren't bombs.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Aloha,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                Kaleo

                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                                                                                                      anybody's who's ever used Visions would know immediately that it's not the same thing as Pyrex....

                                                                                                                                                                                                      I'll never part with my beloved Pyrex -- the biggest risk of breakage to the Visions set I used to have was whether I was going to lose my temper and chuck it out the front door.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      (came damned close before I gave it all away)

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: sunshine842

                                                                                                                                                                                                        The Visions cookware really was awful. The link below has some history. My favorite line: "... its aesthetic appeal could not make up for its lack of functionality."
                                                                                                                                                                                                        http://libanswers.cmog.org/data/answe...

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: drongo

                                                                                                                                                                                                          the mention about it being popular in France is interesting -- I can say from personal experience that Visions no longer exists in France, either....

                                                                                                                                                                          2. Tonight I was cooking buiscuits with my pyrex dish at 400 degrees took it out of the oven and set it on top of the stove on the utting board and it exploded throwing burning glass 6ft across the room and in the process cutting and also burning my 19 month old daughter. It happens and its nothing to joke about. What if it would have hit her eye or cut her deeper. She has third degree burns with blisters and now ill be scarrd there. Im sad this happened and hope it doesnt happen to someone else.

                                                                                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                                                            12 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: rbbuchanan2011

                                                                                                                                                                              I had to sign up for Chow just to reply to this. I am so glad your little one was ok! This weekend, I had boiled some water in my Pyrex measuring cup in the microwave, like I have ALWAYS done. I removed the cup and started to pour the water into my mug, sitting on the countertop. The water hadn't even left the cup when it exploded. It sounded like a gun had gone off and the water went STRAIGHT UP into my face and the glass went out in every direction, all over my kitchen! I don't know how I nor my 3-yr old daughter didn't get third degree burns or weren't terribly cut. I was livid but you know Pyrex assures everyone that it can't happen. Screw them, truly. I will never buy Pyrex anything again and I will switch everything to stoneware.

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: txmom35

                                                                                                                                                                                This sort of thing is scary. I use Pyrex in the micro. I make Mr. Sueatmo's hot chocolate by heating milk in a 2 C Pyrex cup.

                                                                                                                                                                                The thing that is so scary to me is that you and others state often that you've done the same operation repeatedly with no problem then one time--BOOM

                                                                                                                                                                                I never use Pyrex in the oven any more.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: sueatmo

                                                                                                                                                                                  The truth is that Pyrex glassware is not the only thing that can break. Ceramic can too. The only difference is that ceramic simply just cracks. Pyrex being made of tempered glassware (not normal glassware) can shatter.

                                                                                                                                                                                  See video:

                                                                                                                                                                                  http://www.popsci.com/science/article...

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                                                                                                                                                                                    I'm ok with "breakage," but I'm not ok with "explosions." This is a really cool video though, thanks!

                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: txmom35

                                                                                                                                                                                  Please contact Consumer Affairs and the company. Send your pictures. Until someone threatens a class action lawsuit nothing will change.

                                                                                                                                                                                3. re: rbbuchanan2011

                                                                                                                                                                                  Hi, rb:

                                                                                                                                                                                  You (nor should anyone else) needn't put up with this hazard. There are may sources of borosilicate glassware. For one instance: http://stores.ebay.com/Kavalierglass-... For another: *: http://catamountglass.com/

                                                                                                                                                                                  Corning basically immunized itself against lawsuits for injuries by licensing "pyrex" to World Kitchen. All so it could save a dollar by producing soda-lime glass and passing it off as heat-proof. Evil. Europe wouldn't let them do it there, so guess what? It's still borosilicate there.

                                                                                                                                                                                  Aloha,
                                                                                                                                                                                  Kaleo

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: kaleokahu

                                                                                                                                                                                    http://www.vermontgift.com/bakeware This is a better link for the browsing than the second one you provided. The first link goes nowhere.

                                                                                                                                                                                    Hey I like the glass measuring cups. Kind of pricey, but they should be durable--and safe.

                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: rbbuchanan2011

                                                                                                                                                                                    It wouldn't have happened if you took my advice to let glass bakeware cool down slowly before removing it from the oven. And hot glassware should always be set on a dry towel or potholder. This is just basic procedure which has been discussed at length here. Tempered glass can fracture under thermal shock, so it is best practice to minimize it.

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                                                                                      And probably, had this been tempered borosilicate all would have been fine.

                                                                                                                                                                                      Read some of these, and understand that following procedure may not shield you from exploding tempered, soda lime glass: http://www.consumeraffairs.com/homeow...

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: MplsM ary

                                                                                                                                                                                        It in fact probably would NOT have been fine. The difference in thermal shock resistance between (properly annealed) soda lime glass and (properly annealed) borosilicate is measureable - but not to the point where a 300F sudden change in temperature would be OK with one but not the other. And that's basically what you have when you take a hot baking dish out of the oven and set it on the stove top. Warm or not, unless there is something VERY wrong with your oven, the stove top will not be anywhere near as hot as the oven, nor the surface temp of the baking dish you are setting on it.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: CookingForReal

                                                                                                                                                                                          But I do this all the time, and have for years. And my house is kept cool, in the mid-sixties. There must be another factor at play here. I still wonder if it has to do with the percentage of contact surface between the hot item and the resting surface. I usually place my hot items on my gas grill grates, so there is minimal contact between the surfaces.

                                                                                                                                                                                          Also does anyone use trivets or hot pads? Or are people placing these hot items directly in full contact with smooth cooktops, stone countertops, ceramic sinks, wet areas?

                                                                                                                                                                                          As I have posted before, I use more Pyrex and Corning than I ever realized, and while I probably will never stop using it, I would like to use it as safely as I can. Interestingly, I rarely bake in it, I use metal pans for cakes, brownies, etc. however I do use my Pyrex for mac and cheese which I even broil when done to brown the top (not too close though).

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Jerseygirl111

                                                                                                                                                                                            I do -- I always, always use a trivet/hotpad when taking anything out of the oven. I don't want to shock my Pyrex bakeware, I don't want to melt/scorch my countertops, and I don't want to end up cracking my cooktop. (Glass cooktops will give in to the same thermal shock as Pyrex)

                                                                                                                                                                                            And yes, I have broken Pyrex -- most recently when I just flat-out dropped the stupid thing, but I also had a much-loved measuring cup that simply collapsed when I set it on the counter after washing it. I swept it up and wrote it off to microscopic cracks resulting from some ancient wound.

                                                                                                                                                                                  3. Here's the upshot - except in cases where the baking dishes have been misused, no testing agency has been able to reproduce "exploding" Pyrex. They HAVE been able to cause Pyrex baking dishes to break by repeatedly misusing them.

                                                                                                                                                                                    This is not to say that there are never any cases of flawed or improperly annealed baking dishes breaking. I have previously voiced concerns about the poor (often totally lacking) oversight and quality control in overseas production facilities (which are most often in China). But the fact remains that these incidents remain a minority - a tiny minority - of all the Pyrex that is out there. There are nearly half a billion pieces of Pyrex out there. They are not breaking in droves.

                                                                                                                                                                                    Many, MANY of the incidents reported here are, in fact, user error. A preponderance of the incidents reported since I last checked this thread are from people who admit to having set hot pyrex on a cooler (warm stove tops being too much cooler, "warmth" of the stove top notwithstanding) surface.

                                                                                                                                                                                    Of the remaining incidents reported, a couple may be due to manufacturing flaws, and the rest - you can't tell, because the thing about thermal shocks is that it doesn't necessarily cause breakage when the abuse occurs. It causes cracks - and by cracks I mean microfractures, which are not visible to the naked eye - which worsen over time with further abuse, or being jostled around in the dishwasher, or dropped but not necessarily breaking right then, or just with time and normal use - THEN it breaks for "no reason".

                                                                                                                                                                                    You can't really tell from anecdotal report. In the first place, people are far more likely to get on the Internet and complain when something DOESN'T work than they are if they've been going along happily for decades with no problem. Problems get reported loudly and frequently, and the status quo is just ... the status quo.

                                                                                                                                                                                    However given REPEATED testing under controlled circumstances by a variety of labs across the country, some government sponsored and some consumer driven, the fact is that to date no one has been able to reproduce an incident of spontaneous rupture of any piece of Pyrex. They HAVE been able to get it to break after repeatedly misusing it (eg subjecting it repeatedly to sudden changes in temperature).

                                                                                                                                                                                    There is nothing to support the idea that Pyrex is LIKELY to break under normal, proper usage, in any greater incidence than any other type of cookware. Or even a normal drinking glass.

                                                                                                                                                                                    Personally I'd like to put in a shout-out for pyroceram. I wish like heck they'd bring that stuff back in quantity. Sure, you can get a few pieces in the plain white larger casseroles - but I'd like to be able to get it in mugs and smaller containers.

                                                                                                                                                                                    Heck, even the Vitrelle that Corelle Ware is made of is still a wonder substance to me - I left one of my vintage Corelle lunch plates sitting on a burner (ALERT: USER ERROR) and accidentally turned on the burner and did not notice until it was red-hot. I turned it off, grabbed a kitchen towel, got it off the burner, grabbed some more kitchen towels and set the burning hot plate on those and threw another towel over the top in case it decided to shatter. It was SO hot I had to move it to another set of towels because it was scorching the first set. Somebody asked me why I didn't plunge it into water to cool it - DUH! I may have done a dumb thing but at least not THAT dumb! That WOULD have resulted in exploding Vitrelle and shards of glass flying about.

                                                                                                                                                                                    That plate is nearly 40 years old and it cooled down and is still being used every day. It wouldn't surprise me at all if one of these days it breaks after being dropped, or knocked into something. If it does - it won't be because Vitrelle is a dangerous substance. It'll be because every time a human being uses a tool, that's a dangerous situation, due to human error. You can make the same mistake at long intervals several times without ever even realizing it - until the one time luck isn't with you, or the gremlins is agin' you - and then something "breaks for no reason". Humans make errors all the time, even when they know better, because the human ability to PAY ATTENTION isn't perfect and it isn't infinite.

                                                                                                                                                                                    That's why they call them "accidents".

                                                                                                                                                                                    29 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: CookingForReal

                                                                                                                                                                                      Everything you said may be true - but I've been cooking a long time now and the only piece of cookware that ever EXPLODED in my oven was a piece of Pyrex. It was room temp when it went in the oven with room temp food in it. I will never use Pyrex to cook in again. It's just not worth it to me

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: CookingForReal

                                                                                                                                                                                        <... then something "breaks for no reason" ...>

                                                                                                                                                                                        Chemicalkinetics has pointed out that damage may be done (but not easily detected) at some prior time... then the piece of glassware breaks under normal use for no apparent reason. I know that I have not always been careful ('user error' as you say) so if I had a piece shatter for no apparent reason, I'd suspect that my prior misuse was to blame.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: CookingForReal

                                                                                                                                                                                          You make points that many veteran Pyrex users make. The problem as I see it is that a user can abuse Pyrex inadvertently. Sooner or later, someone will be injured badly in one these inadvertently caused explosions. Perhaps someone already has. I don't know.

                                                                                                                                                                                          I use Pyrex for some things. I like the large handled mixing bowls and measuring cups and I also have a smallish mixing bowl. But I don't use Pyrex in the oven unless I absolutely have to. And I got rid of my old Pyrex pie pans and large bakers. I don't want to have an inadvertent accident.

                                                                                                                                                                                          I fail to understand why anyone would want to use something that could lead to accident and/or injury when there are other good alternatives available.

                                                                                                                                                                                          Assigning blame to the user is not a good enough reason IMO. Can you guarantee that you will never make a mistake with your Pyrex? Won't ever, ever set it down on a cool counter after taking it from the oven? Will always look for bruises before using?

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: sueatmo

                                                                                                                                                                                            the same thing can be said about the stove, knives, etc....

                                                                                                                                                                                            Nobody blames Wusthof or Henkels when they cut themselves, nor Maytag when they burn themselves.

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: sueatmo

                                                                                                                                                                                              Hi, Sue:

                                                                                                                                                                                              I'm with you on this one. The analogy I'd make is selling a car which, if you allow road grime to accumulate, may crash because it falls apart while at speed. Road grime is a *expected* consequence of driving, just as placing a piece of Pyrex onto a countertop or into a sink is of cooking.

                                                                                                                                                                                              I find sunshine's analogies misplaced. Cut mishaps with knives and (most) burn mishaps with stoves come as clearly assumed risks. Exploding cookware is a different animal altogether.

                                                                                                                                                                                              Had Corning and its licensees stuck with the original formula for Pyrex (or switched to the alumina glass from which it makes Visions), this issue of exploding glass would be truly minuscule, and more clearly limited to cases of abuse.

                                                                                                                                                                                              Aloha,
                                                                                                                                                                                              Kaleo

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: kaleokahu

                                                                                                                                                                                                in both cases, someone gets hurt because they weren't paying attention and/or misused the tools.

                                                                                                                                                                                                We've all done stupid things where the little voice in your head is saying "you're gonna be sorry you did that" (and the little bastard is always right) --

                                                                                                                                                                                                but misuse (intentional or not) and or not understanding how to use a certain tool will almost always result in injury.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: sunshine842

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Hi, sunshine:

                                                                                                                                                                                                  No, they're not the same IMO. People's knives and stoves are not suddenly exploding and cutting their owners and bystanders with shrapnel. There are plenty of cases where the owners of Pyrex have "paid attention" and the piece has nevertheless shattered. Many are reported with no thermal shock whatsoever.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  I also must take issue with your statement upthread that ceramic cooktops succumb to the same thermal shock as does Pyrex. No cooktop surface I'm aware of has ever been made from soda lime glass. All glass cooktops I'm aware of are made of glass ceramic, which is vastly different from Pyrex in its ability to withstand thermal shock. For example, a ceramic top can achieve >700F, and can handle a pan of 60F water being placed on it. Soda lime glass can handle (at best) about a 300F change without dangerous stress.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Aloha,
                                                                                                                                                                                                  Kaleo

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: kaleokahu

                                                                                                                                                                                                    I didn't say cooktops were made of soda lime (or even of borosilicate)

                                                                                                                                                                                                    I said that cooktops can crack under thermal shock. I have a couple of friends who've had it happen.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    (scratch on the top from moving a pot...hot burner...a wipe with a cold sponge -- krrrack)

                                                                                                                                                                                                    The fact that it didn't shatter doesn't make a cut or burn any less traumatic....

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: sunshine842

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hi, sunshine:

                                                                                                                                                                                                      I'm unclear--you believe that cracked ceramic cooktops have cut or burned someone?

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Certainly, a badly-scratched or chipped Ceran top can be cracked. But what we have with these Pyrex explosions is often no discernible scratches or chips at all prior to detonation.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      If your point is that all glass is subject to thermal shock breakage to some degree, I agree. But there's a dangerous *qualitative* difference between tempered soda lime glass and glass ceramic. One is a quite heat-stable material; the other is not.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Aloha,
                                                                                                                                                                                                      Kaleo

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: kaleokahu

                                                                                                                                                                                                        two different conversations.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        the mention about cooktops breaking under thermal shock was an aside unrelated to the unexpected accident conversation.

                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: sueatmo

                                                                                                                                                                                                Nahh, who could guarantee that? It could be microscopic cracks or scratches that cause the failure. I could never see those. But no one has been able to prove it is inherently dangerous, that is why it is still being made.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Jerseygirl111

                                                                                                                                                                                                  The plaintiff in the Canadian case proved it, with an allowance for contributory fault.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: kaleokahu

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Really? Do you have a link I could read about the case? I googled it and can't seem to find it. Thanks.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Jerseygirl111

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hi, Jerseygirl:

                                                                                                                                                                                                      You can start here, but The Google will have hundreds of hits: http://www.smitiuchinjurylaw.com/Fall... Also: http://www.lfpress.com/2013/08/14/exp...

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Bear in mind several things. First, this case was about Visions, which is far less dangerous than Pyrex. Second, Corning and World Kitchen fought this plaintiff hammer-and-tongs for nearly THIRTEEN years before getting tagged. Third, the plaintiff unearthed more than 2,000 other reported incidents (in Canada and the U.S. alone, since 1983). Fourth, the plaintiff prevailed on a theory that the glass was inherently dangerous because defects in it are not apparent to consumers. Fifth, Corning and WK have kept the matter in court by appealing.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Aloha,
                                                                                                                                                                                                      Kaleo

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: kaleokahu

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Thanks, but as you pointed out Visions is not the same.

                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: sueatmo

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Hi Sue & all others,

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Pyrex dishes from before corning sold the rights to World Kitchen in 1998 are made of borosilicate glass, and are stronger then the Pyrex of today. So if your dishes were from before 98, you made a mistake getting rid of them.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  There are plenty of alternatives, but borosilicate glassware is the BEST to cook in. Borosilicate glass does not absorb or leech anything into food, and is the most hygienic cooking surface available.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  I've watched many videos on soda-lime versus borosilicate including the consumer reports tests. Consumer reports test showed that borosilicate glassware is much stronger than the average soda-lime and can withstand a thermal shock of over 400 degrees.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  What makes the tempered soda-lime glass explode is the rate of expansion from heating to cooling- when the glass is expanding from heat and quickly cooling the glasses walls cannot withstand the extreme change causing the expansion to make the glassware explode.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  At the end of the consumer reports video they do advise that consumers avoid using glassware all together, but those with metal allergies cannot- and borosilicate glass is the safest and most hygienic option available to such consumers.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Borosilicate glassware can still break, but because of its technical make-up it would not explode into a million little shards and riddle your kitchen or dining room with glass. It would mostly break into large chunks- meaning no flying hot shards of glass.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  So, if you like cooking with glass and would like to continue with a safer option- scout garage sales for old Pyrex or research the newer options available in the US (there are a few).

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Steph_Warfel

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Hi, Steph:

                                                                                                                                                                                                    You are 99% correct. However, I believe that Corning began making "Pyrex" from soda lime glass beginning in the 1940s. If this is true, not all pre-1998 Pyrex is borosilicate.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Aloha,
                                                                                                                                                                                                    Kaleo

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: kaleokahu

                                                                                                                                                                                                      I think that even Consumer Reports was unable to determine for sure when the switch was made. From Snopes:

                                                                                                                                                                                                      In a January 2011 article on glass bakeware, Consumer Reports stated that they were unable to determine exactly when major U.S. manufacturers (including Pyrex) switched from soda lime glass to borosilicate glass:
                                                                                                                                                                                                      In the U.S. a major change occurred in the way glass bakeware was made. World Kitchen and Anchor Hocking now manufacture all of their glass bakeware using soda lime glass, which is less expensive to produce than borosilicate. Soda lime is commonly used in products such as drinking glasses and bottles.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      It's not clear when the switch occurred. Anchor Hocking spokeswoman Barbara Wolf says borosilicate glass was phased out by the industry by the early 1980s. World Kitchen vice president Jim Aikins says Pyrex glass bakeware sold in the U.S. has consistently been made of soda lime glass that has been strengthened through thermal tempering at the Charleroi plant for about 60 years.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Sarah Horvath, a Corning spokeswoman, says Corning made Pyrex out of both soda lime and borosilicate at several locations before selling the U.S. business to World Kitchen in 1998, but provided no more details. P. Bruce Adams, formerly an executive scientist at Corning, says that borosilicate was still being used to make Pyrex when he retired in 1987.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Read more at http://www.snopes.com/food/warnings/p...

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Jerseygirl111

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hi, Jerseygirl:

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Yup, clear as mud. Corning and WK have always wanted it that way. WK was under bankruptcy protection for awhile, too, which frustrated lawsuits.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        The trial lawyer in me tells me Corning saw the writing on the product liability wall back in the 90s when it found the right cutout/licensee.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Aloha,
                                                                                                                                                                                                        Kaleo

                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: Steph_Warfel

                                                                                                                                                                                                      This is false, yet it gets repeated again and again. Corning began making bakeware with soda lime glass in the 1940s, long before World Kitchen entered the picture. Old Corning Pyrex pieces could be either soda lime or borosilicate glass.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: CookingForReal

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Y'know, I am just a little p'off at theoretical a-holes dismissing my personal experiences as 'anecdotal'. I am sitting here with a finger wound that hasn't healed in eleven months and a kitchen floor that still turns up glass fragments from washing a Pyrex bowl at room temperature in lukewarm water. As Groucho would say, 'Who am I gonna believe, you or my own eyes?' (or finger).

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: mwhitmore

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hi, mwhitmore:

                                                                                                                                                                                                      I'm sorry you got hurt. The up side is that you were not hurt more seriously/expensively. Maybe this will make you feel better:

                                                                                                                                                                                                      "Last April, I was making meatballs (as I had several times before) in a 9x13 Pyrex pan. When I pulled it out of the oven and placed it on the counter, it exploded. Dinner was ruined, of course, but one of the long sides of the pan fell from the counter, cutting my big toe. As it turns out, the tendon in that toe had been severed, requiring surgery. Multiple casts, physical therapy and doctor appointments were required to get back to normal and I'm still trying to get there. A lot of these complaints seem focused on ruined dinner. I thought I would share my experience so people could see there is more to lose than $30-$40 (in my case, a lot of time, pain, and $15,000+). I also hope this product will do the right thing and put stronger warning labels and education in place." http://www.consumeraffairs.com/homeow...

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Aloha,
                                                                                                                                                                                                      Kaleo

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: kaleokahu

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Thanks, Kaleo. But, of course, all these stories are anecdotal---theoretically, Pyrex never explodes when used properly.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: mwhitmore

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Yeah, like this incident that never happened:

                                                                                                                                                                                                          "I had an 11X17 Pyrex glass baking dish soaking on 1/30/12, and came home, and started washing it in hot, soapy water. It cracked in millions of pieces with one large, sharp piece stuck in my left hand, wrist area, which created a large hole. On the way to the emergency room, I soaked two dish towels full of blood, and could not control the bleeding. I received 8 stitches, and was told that I was "so lucky" to be here to talk about it."

                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: mwhitmore

                                                                                                                                                                                                        "Anecdotal" is the correct term for a story of an individual incident. It doesn't mean that someone doesn't believe you, it's a matter of putting things in perspective so as to understand the general problem. It is not valid to generalize from an individual incident.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Calling people vulgar names is not likely to elicit more sympathy, in my opinion.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: mwhitmore

                                                                                                                                                                                                          I'm with you. Over and over, I'm reading, "you're doing it wrong." Okay fine - I get it -- I used my Pyrex incorrectly. Doesn't change the fact that:

                                                                                                                                                                                                          - I've still got burn marks all over my kitchen floor
                                                                                                                                                                                                          - My friend had the same happen in her kitchen and she's lucky that she and baby weren't hurt
                                                                                                                                                                                                          - I too am still finding fragments and places where the glass has ruined carpet. I've even found bits in my neighboring dining room

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Go ahead - continue to bake with Pyrex. It's really up to you if you want to risk it. I'd rather use metal because frankly, cooking with glassware that has the potential to hurt or me (or someone I love) scares the hell out of me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: seatownkt

                                                                                                                                                                                                            I'm tired of hearing the "you did it wrong" nonsense. My pan was put on a thick terry cloth towel on a warm stove. It sat over 20 mins before exploding. No, to the naysayers, the burner wasnt on. I sat it there to keep it warm and the oven was on. It didnt get bumped, chipped or any other sort of damage.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: tammyjk1021

                                                                                                                                                                                                              I am too. I didn't misuse my pyrex in any way, shape or form when it exploded in my oven. I simply won't use it anymore, period.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      3. I'm shocked to hear how dangerous glassware has become. I vaguely remember the thermal shock warnings and haven't always followed the rules. I like the 9 x 13 pyrex baking dish for lasagna and admittedly have placed it on cold stovetop grates, ceramic cooktops and more recently on cold electric burners straight from a 350 degree oven without incident. Am I just "lucky" or is it because the pyrex I'm using is at least 30-40 years old? I tend to think it's the latter.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: castironmaiden

                                                                                                                                                                                                          I kind of wonder the same thing. I have a 25+ year old lasagna pan and I've done all of those things too. Lately however, I try to throw a pot holder down before I put it on the cold stovetop grate.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: castironmaiden

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Probably it has lasted more than 30 years because it is free of microscopic defects. The old pieces with defects broke a long time ago.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: castironmaiden

                                                                                                                                                                                                              No not lucky. The way Pyrex is currently made compared to how it was made 20-30 years ago is different.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: castironmaiden

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Hi, castironmaiden: "Am I just "lucky" or is it because the pyrex I'm using is at least 30-40 years old?"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Probably both. Unfortunately, Corning made Pyrex in both borosilicate glass and soda lime glass over virtually all of its history, and there is no easy way to tell which it is you have. But anyone who has purchased Pyrex from World Kitchen *knows* they have soda lime.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Even if you could verify that your Pyrex is borosilicate, that does not mean the piece is free of stress defects (although 40 years' use without breaking is a good sign). Moreover 30-40 years of use is going to mean tiny scuffs, abrasions, scratches, dings, etc., all of which can create stress risers in subsequent use--and abuse.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                I am amazed by the twin fallacies of: (a) "If it hasn't happened to me, it must not be happening"; and the only slightly less insane (b) "I know how to use it properly, and anyone who's been hurt doesn't."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                There are literally *thousands* of reported cases (leaving us to guess about what may be tens of thousands of unreported cases), and a significant proportion of these clearly were not the result of abuse or failure to follow instructions.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Aloha,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                Kaleo

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: kaleokahu

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  One almost-as-inexpensive-as-Pyrex but safer option, especially for the larger baking dishes (where both the potential amount of flying glass and the waste of food are greatest):

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Older Corning Ware -- the Pyroceram formulation, not the stuff now being sold, which is just stoneware. Corning Ware's Pyroceram is still being made in France, and some has been sold here in recent years, but the surest source is flea markets and online sites selling the product produced from 1958-88 (with dribs and drabs into the 1990s).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The pieces that can function as a lasagna pan are the P-21 and A-21; slightly smaller are the P-332; big and slightly deeper is the A-21-B-N.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Informative site for checking out sizes and shapes of the pieces is bluecornflower dot com. Another helpful one is corellecorner dot com.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Corning Ware is made to take extreme and rapid changes in temperature without breaking. It can literally go from freezer to oven. As with tempered glass, you want a piece with no nicks or chips or cracks. There's a ton of it out there in flea markets, yard sales, and thrift shops.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. Forget the new "Pyrex" your local thrift store has piles of the real borosilicate pyrex - the new junk made by World Kitchen is not really "Pyrex" like you grew up with its just cheap glass that apparently explodes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                There is a reason the original stuff was so popular in the first place but they abandoned it and kept the name.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                9 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: JTPhilly

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  This is a myth that gets repeated over and over. Pyrex bakeware continues to made in one of the factories which predates World Kitchen, and by the same process. Pyrex was made with both borosilicate and soda-lime glass before World Kitchen.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Sorry but you are very wrong if you believe it is not made differently. Please research it. There have been lectures, videos and even a patent filed. So how you could say it is made the same is beyond me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      This is exactly why I won't even bother using pyrex anymore. I don't care if it's old or new, I don't have time to try and figure out what the real truth is and I'm not taking a chance with it in my kitchen ever again. It's not safe, there are plenty of other kinds of baking dishes made out of other materials that work just fine and it's just not worth it to me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: flourgirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        "I don't have time to try and figure out what the real truth is and I'm not taking a chance with it in my kitchen ever again."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Exactly! The day my dish exploded, I knew I had done nothing to cause a temperature shock or mishandled it. I won't even allow my kids to put water in a glass straight from the dishwasher! Every single piece of Pyrex was gone from my home in 24 hours. There are just too many other choices out there that are both safe and healthy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Its definitely not the same stuff - all need to do is handle it to tell the difference.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          This was the PYREX that was opaque and usually white known as opal Pyrex. It was originally developed to take advantage of the "strength" properties of soda lime glass to replace china.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          This statement was on the World Kitchen Pyrex website but is now gone.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          "It has also been wrongly suggested that World Kitchen lowered the quality of PYREX glass bakeware by switching from borosilicate glass to soda lime glass. Again, this is not true. The Charleroi plant has produced PYREX glass products out of a heat-strengthened (tempered) soda lime glass for about 60 years, first by our predecessor Corning Incorporated, and since 1998 by World Kitchen" -- Aikins, Jim. VP World Kitchen. "Setting the Record Straight: The Truth About PYREX®." Notice to customers posted at http://www.pyrexware.com/thetruthabou.... Retrieved January 2010.”
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Corning can say that Pyrex was made from soda lime glass for the last sixty years because all of the opaque, usually white(opal) glass was an “opacified soda-lime glass” and it was made at the Charleroi plant . Plants were set up to make either soda lime glass or borosilicate. Now World Kitchens makes the clear glass there. This is the history of that plant.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          http://www.corellecorner.com/company-...
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          The white glass, made at the Charleroi plant, fell out of favor but they were able to keep the plant open.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          “By 1985, Corning decided to end production of all opal Pyrex ware. Opal Pyrex was no longer sold after mid-1986 and production was phased out over the next two years. Since the Charleroi plant infrastructure and equipment were designed for opal Pyrex production, the future of the plant was in jeopardy. However, Charleroi plant management and the local community rallied executives in New York to keep the plant open. Their efforts paid off when the Suprema operation was moved to Charleroi in 1989. The plant continues to operate today, producing clear Pyrex items for World Kitchen.”
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          http://www.pyrexpassion.com/

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: wekick

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I have a few pieces of the opal variety of the same vintage as the clear lasagna pan but I rarely use them. I also have some old Anchor Hocking Fire King opal bowls that WIki claims were originally made from borosilicate glass and are currently made from soda lime. The bowls are in constant use and I am not fearful they will explode. Break, maybe.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Why did the Corning opal glass fall out of favor? Not from explosions or we would have heard about it, even without the internet. If they had been producing soda lime glass for 60 years then their formula was obviously successful and resulted in a trusted brand.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            We live in different times today where the public seems to tolerate lying an cheating corporations. I just boycott them. Try boycotting Nestle and see how large their market share is.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: castironmaiden

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              From what I have read the opal glass fell out of favor by its looks. I love it though and have some of the mixing bowl sets. I love all the bright colors.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              It is possible that the white PYREX even though soda lime glass had different thermal shock properties than the type made now. It does seem to be thinner than what is made now which would help with that. The exact composition of the glass may make a difference as well.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. Of course many will just decide to not use Pyrex of any kind because they don’t want to deal with glass and any type of glass or ceramics will shatter if heated in such a way as to exceed the limits of its physical properties. I still use my Pyrex for refrigerated applications and in baking where I want to see the bottom of what I am baking. If you are so inclined, here are some clues as to what a piece of Pyrex might be and how to reduce your risks. You can reduce your risk but not eliminate it because there might some pieces that are exceptions and IT IS GLASS.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Look at the trademark on the piece. There is a lot written about Pyrex. The terms PYREX, pyrex and Pyrex are often used interchangeably. The mark on the actual piece is specific. Originally the mark was all caps, PYREX. When the mark was licensed to World Kitchens it was “pyrex” and is sold in North and South America and is soda lime glass. It is still PYREX as licensed to ARC International which is the Pyrex sold in Europe and the middle east. This is stated to still be borosilicate glass. Lab glass, also borosilicate is still marked PYREX The exception to this is the older opaque glass that is marked “PYREX”. It is soda lime glass.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Here is how it shakes out on the Pyrex website. http://www.pyrex.com/ It is interesting on World Kitchen history page they use a picture of vintage PYREX.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Do not use anything for heat applications that is marked “pyrex” or anything that is opaque, even if marked “PYREX”

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Look at the color and thickness. Clear “PYREX” in this country was initially made of borosilicate glass. It was colorless or slightly tinged a grayish or yellowish color. They also later developed “flameware” for stovetop use. It was a bluish tint initially but later was clear. It is marked flameware . Clear soda lime glass “pyrex” is thicker and greenish/aqua in tint.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Pyr...
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I would not use anything that is the thicker, greenish tint glass for heat application. Other manufacturers may use other colors.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Additionally, I would get rid of any glassware that is scratched, chipped or has any obvious defects.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          http://www.newton.dep.anl.gov/askasci...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I would be very careful to not cause any rapid changes in temperature to a dish.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          13 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: wekick

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I have two pie plates, one marked "PYREX" and the other marked "pyrex." Both are decades old, before the division was sold to Borden and became part of World Kitchen brands.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            The one marked "PYREX" has a greenish tint.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Very unusual. Can you post a picture. I probably would not use either.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: wekick

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                No, I can't post a picture. Many millions of pieces of Pyrex bakeware have been made over the years. I doubt that they can be easily classified.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                As for using them, I've been using them with good results for about 40 years, and am not going to stop now. Safety is just a matter of careful handling, including avoiding thermal shock.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Trademarks and manufacturer's marks are used to identify all kinds of things and are often used for a given time period or associated with a certain patent. It might be that one of the Pyrex books has this info and it would be easy to tell when items were made. If not trademarks and patents could be researched if someone really wanted to know in exact detail.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The most important thing is that you are comfortable with your pans.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: wekick

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Rapid changes lol.....does that include sitting a pan out of the oven on a terry cloth towel which was folded over 4 times? Just wondering because that towel held in the heat and was placed on a warm stove top. Does that also include a measuring cup out of the dishwasher allowed to come to room temp on its own? Because that is what happened to some. Stop insisting these instances are just user error mishaps. No one here buys it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Also, as a scholar, I will tell you that if you try to convince someone of "fact", Wikipedia is a terrible source to quote. These so called "facts" can be written and rewritten by anyone. .

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Bradt, a professor emeritus of materials engineering at the University of Alabama, along with Martens, from the university’s Central Analytical Facility have written an excellent paper on this issue regarding the two types of glass. Perhaps it would interest you. They also indicated that the heat strengthening processes used intended to create dice type fragments during explosions. were a failure. In my case, this was certainly true as the explosion produced pieces that were aprox 4 inches long and 1 or more inches wide.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              You may also find it interesting that in Europe they still use authentic borosilicate glass and do not experience exploding cookware.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: tammyjk1021

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                "tammyjk1021
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Rapid changes lol.....does that include sitting a pan out of the oven on a terry cloth towel which was folded over 4 times? Just wondering because that towel held in the heat and was placed on a warm stove top. Does that also include a measuring cup out of the dishwasher allowed to come to room temp on its own? Because that is what happened to some. Stop insisting these instances are just user error mishaps. No one here buys it..,"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I don't think you got the point of the post. The idea is to differentiate borosilicate from soda lime glass IF you wish to use Pyrex. There are two types I don't think you did more than skim my post or you would have seen that qualification at the beginning. Yes those types of actions you listed can be rapid enough to cause shattering especially with soda lime glass. If you insulate the bottom and allow the top to cool, you might have a 100 degree difference and bam. Borosilicate glass can tolerate 300 degree difference.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                "Also, as a scholar, I will tell you that if you try to convince someone of "fact", Wikipedia is a terrible source to quote. These so called "facts" can be written and rewritten by anyone. ."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Again you didn't even click on the link because it is not a quote. As an aside, people do like to disparage Wiki but it often has good information. You being a scholar I'm sure you know you have to check out everything you read. Very often the information is well sourced and sometimes not. Many articles under the guise of being scholarly are total nonsense. I try to read and judge each source on its own merit.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                "Bradt, a professor emeritus of materials engineering at the University of Alabama, along with Martens, from the university’s Central Analytical Facility have written an excellent paper on this issue regarding the two types of glass. Perhaps it would interest you. They also indicated that the heat strengthening processes used intended to create dice type fragments during explosions. were a failure. In my case, this was certainly true as the explosion produced pieces that were aprox 4 inches long and 1 or more inches wide."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Yes it would please post a link. I am talking about using the borosilicate glass though.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                "You may also find it interesting that in Europe they still use authentic borosilicate glass and do not experience exploding cookware."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I'm sure now you didn't even read what I posted because I referred to that. That's ok. It wasn't meant for people who don't want to use glass. You seem to fit into that category.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: tammyjk1021

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Never mind posting the link to the article I already has read it.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  http://www3.nd.edu/~rroeder/ame60646/...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: wekick

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I did read what you posted, but again, you seem to believe that the explosions are related to user error. This is just not true. As to the temp differences in my instance...have a good look at your oven. There are vents there that release heat on top of your stove. That is where my pan sat, with the warmth of the oven there. Come on, if a pan sitting on a warm stove is not safe, what is? Of course it must be the towel! Maybe I should have sat it on a cold counter? That wouldnt cause a temp flux now would it. So basically, removing the pan from the oven in any matter is the problem right? I did more than just skim your post, however when one uses Wiki, I will admit I don't pay it much attention. I also read your post claiming that the glass wasnt changed and that is just false. You would be correct in assuming that I will never again use Pyrex of any sort. Luckily, my children had just left the room when the dish exploded. The glass pieces that looked like knives could have killed someone. Why would anyone in their right mind want to take that risk again.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: tammyjk1021

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hi, Tammy: "Why would anyone...take that risk"?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Confirmation bias. I bet a large % of even the people who've reported Pyrex exploding on them would've never believed it was going to happen to them. They tend to trust that companies like Corning won't put out defective products (at least without adequate warnings). And they're increasingly confirmed in their bias the more they cook in it without incident, never recognizing that every subsequent use is taking another chance of getting hurt.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Perhaps some day, this thread will get a bump from someone whose confirmation bias blew up in their face. I just hope they don't get hurt.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Aloha,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Kaleo

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: kaleokahu

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Like many who had an explosion, I never dreamed it would happen. It wasnt until I researched it and found many many others. Anyone who has ever seen a windshield broken understands how glass should break "safely". I could tell when the pan shattered that it was supposed to break like that but failed to do so. That is the part that concerned me the most. A broken pan and a lost dinner is disappointing but nothing compared to the horrifying flying glass. In my case, I found glass at least 10 to 12 feet away and from what I have read, it's not unusual.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I too hope those that think it won't happen to them don't get hurt. I now use cast iron in the oven. Once in a while I use good quality clay or flameware. At least if it breaks, it doesnt explode.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: tammyjk1021

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        " tammyjk1021
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I did read what you posted, but again, you seem to believe that the explosions are related to user error. "

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I didn't use the term "user error", but if you the user exceed the 100 degree differential that the glass will tolerate, even inadvertently, yes I suppose it is user error. The term "user error" has the connotation of fault to some but fault is a separate issue. In this case I think people expect WKI "pyrex" to be "PYREX" of the past. There are some discussions on line about Corning/WKI diluting the brand because people generally expect "pyrex" to have the physical properties of "PYREX" that was made of borosilicate glass. There are also some discussions on various tech boards where chemists bought "pyrex" assuming it was "PYREX" and were caught in the same predicament you were. So even the chemists had "user errors". You just didn't know how easily it could shatter. In my mind, when they changed the formula to one that did not withstand the temperature gradient. it was no longer PYREX as people knew it. I kind of think that it is the reason that the trademark World Kitchens has is in lower case letters. Lab glass and bakeware in Europe still has the PYREX trade mark and is made of borosilicate glass.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        "This is just not true. As to the temp differences in my instance...have a good look at your oven. There are vents there that release heat on top of your stove. That is where my pan sat, with the warmth of the oven there. Come on, if a pan sitting on a warm stove is not safe, what is? Of course it must be the towel! Maybe I should have sat it on a cold counter? That wouldnt cause a temp flux now would it. So basically, removing the pan from the oven in any matter is the problem right? "

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Yes unfortunately it is physics. Think about your pan sitting there with heat from the oven vent on one side and not the other. My guess it that it would not be hard to create that 100F degree difference. Not your fault though. You didn't know.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        "I did more than just skim your post, however when one uses Wiki, I will admit I don't pay it much attention. "

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        That explains many of your comments. Why would you bother to comment? I don't like to comment unless I have seen what I am commenting on -just a personal preference though. I like to be specific in my comments to what the person actually posted. If a wiki quote is used AND it is faulty, I would then comment on that.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        In the case of this link it was a picture showing the difference in glass and trademarks. Even though Wiki can have its faults as any source of information can, it can also be very useful, sometimes the articles, but also the sources listed at the bottom of the page for the information in the article. You just need to apply the same standards and level of discernment that you would apply to any other source of information. It would be a shame to arbitrarily dismiss an entire source of information because it is fashionable to do so.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        "I also read your post claiming that the glass wasnt changed and that is just false."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Note in my post what appears in quotes and the sources of the quotes. These are not my words.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I posted a quote from the World Kitchens guy and the history of the Charleroi plant to show how he can say that they have made (some)Pyrex from soda lime glass for the last 60 years. That is true, but but not all Pyrex back then was made of soda lime glass. They have only one major plant that made soda lime glass-- it was the opaque usually white Pyrex, not the clear stuff. The plants were built for the type of glass, borosilicate or soda lime. If you read the links, you will get an idea of what happened. Borden/ World Kitchen when they acquired the trademark "pyrex" all lower case, used that plant(Charleroi) to make the soda lime glass, clear almost colorless bakeware and the borosilicate glass was no longer made in the US by Corning for bakeware.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        "Why would anyone in their right mind want to take that risk again."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I would not take "that" risk.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I am reasonably certain that all of my bakeware that I use in a heated application is borosilicate glass, allowing 300-330F difference in temperature so I am not taking that same risk a person would take with "pyrex" of the new soda lime glass type, allowing 100F degrees difference at least as far as thermal shock.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Ignorance was bliss for a long time as I never paid any attention to what I did with it. We never had any breakage in my mother's or my kitchen and that goes back a ways. I am mindful of the possibility breakage now so open the oven and let it cool in place a little. I only use it for pies and I have a small roaster that I use for slow cooking. I have some little pie dishes that are very thin PYREX and read that the thinness also helps the glass tolerate a greater temperature differential.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: wekick

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          "Breakage" is not the concern, explosion is. If this glass shattered as they had intended, it wouldnt be as much of an issue. In fact, if their patented process worked, we would not be hearing of explosions.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          As for pyrex vs PYREX, I doubt many people have the time or interest in discerning the two. It's just easier not to purchase the product. As to the temp flux, I've seen estimates of much lower as to what this glass will withstand. That makes it virtually useless when removing from the oven. In fact, think about it..if you take a dish from a 350 degree oven you will obtain that within a few min. You can try to explain away my situation any way you wish, but the fact remains that it should not have exploded with 5 inch fragments flying across the room. People have reported taking measuring cups out of the dishwasher only to have them explode in their hands. No sitting them on the counter, no running them under water etc. Just going from heat to room temp can cause an explosion, in my opinion it makes this glass pretty useless. And what's worse is the fact that there is no reason for it. Well, other than profit.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: tammyjk1021

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            "Breakage" is not the concern, explosion is. If this glass shattered as they had intended, it wouldnt be as much of an issue. In fact, if their patented process worked, we would not be hearing of explosions. "

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Please post any links you have to describe what their patented process is intended to do. I would love to read that. Breakage-shattering-explosion -I don't want any of this in my kitchen as you can have life threatening injuries no matter what you call it. This would be very upsetting.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            "As for pyrex vs PYREX, I doubt many people have the time or interest in discerning the two. It's just easier not to purchase the product."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            It is a big world and believe it or not there are people who do have the interest. They might have some already and like the way it bakes and that you can see through it. Funny thing how people think differently about things. As I stated at the beginning of my post upthread, my observations are for them.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            " As to the temp flux, I've seen estimates of much lower as to what this glass will withstand."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Would you mind posting a link to that that because I have only read mostly around 99-100 F and I am trying to get as much info as I can. These numbers are all generalities though as we do not have the specifics on WKI soda lime glass so their glass might have less tolerance. My guess is that this is proprietary information.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            " That makes it virtually useless when removing from the oven. "

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Yes it would seem so.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            "In fact, think about it..if you take a dish from a 350 degree oven you will obtain that within a few min. "

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            No if you think it through, that might happen only if you put it in a zero degree freezer. You might then create that 300-350F degree differential. 350-72(room temperature) degrees= 278 so not to that 300 degree differential. If the whole dish cools some when you take it out too so less differential. One study I read had some shattering of borosilicate glass coming out of a 450 oven. That is why the old stuff didn't break. That is why some are content to use the old stuff.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Again there are different tolerances of the glass depending on its composition and how the piece is engineered. The old PYREX may have higher tolerances than the 300-330F quoted. They had flameware that tolerated sitting on a flame. PYREX lab ware also tolerates heat with a Bunsen burner.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            "You can try to explain away my situation any way you wish, but the fact remains that it should not have exploded with 5 inch fragments flying across the room. People have reported taking measuring cups out of the dishwasher only to have them explode in their hands. No sitting them on the counter, no running them under water etc. Just going from heat to room temp can cause an explosion, in my opinion it makes this glass pretty useless. And what's worse is the fact that there is no reason for it. Well, other than profit."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            You seem even after multiple explanations to have missed the point of my posts. I am in no way explaining your situation away. I am giving you the facts as to how this company has come to this point and how they explain themselves. While profits are most likely a primary motive, curiously, the move to soda lime glass was also because it was considered to be better environmentally. Nothing is ever totally as it seems.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I feel very bad that that happened to you and really you are doing the best thing for you and that is not to have anything to do with Pyrex. I would consider that the current "pyrex" would be dangerous at least for me too. I have had all my kids get rid of theirs.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Good Luck with your future cooking endeavors. May you cook in comfort and safety.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. I am thoroughly confused-
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  can someone summarize all these posts

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: jpr54_1

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    You can't summarize nor would you want to. There are many opinions. Some based on fact and some not.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Pyrex is glass. Glass breaks under certain circumstances. If you are worried about breakage don't use it.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    If you want to use Pyrex for some reason, you can decrease but not eliminate all risk. If you are worried about breakage from dropping you might be better off with soda lime glass. If you are worried about thermal shock breakage, get borosilicate glass. You can buy these specific glasses. If you are buying new, look for bakeware labeled borosilicate glass if that is what you want. If you have some already I posted some things above that I think are risk factors. You cannot eliminate all risk though.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Do what you are comfortable with.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. It happened to me last night! A Sainsburys 7” non-stick pan lid exploded in my hand causing me to throw out all the food I was cooking and an entire box of soft toys that were on the kitchen floor – billions of shards of glass went everywhere. Had I had children on the floor in the kitchen this may have been a much more serious accident. These pans are NOT safe

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. My friend literally had this happen today! He was cooking chicken nuggets in the oven, took them out with oven mitts and the pyrex literally exploded,glass spreading not only in the kicthen but i to the lounge room! Miraculously he was uninjured, but it could have gone in his eyes and blinded him. This is real dangerous shit! Glass is known to shatter u der extreme temperature ir pressure changes, but pyrex seems to have an explosive reaction! Perhaps it only happens under highly specific circumstances?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Lcohlson

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I seem to recall that to bake safely with pyrex, the food needs to cover the bottom of the pan, or there needs to be liquid in the pan. I can see where nuggets, which are dry and may have been frozen when they went into the pan, would cause thermal shock. I am not saying this is something everyone should know and I do think that the manufacturers' consumer education efforts have been inadequate.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Lcohlson

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          It happens when people misuse it for roasting, as here.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            And sometimes it just happens, even if you follow all the instructions. Buyer beware.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Brilliant above, taking the reporter of firsthand experience to task for inaccurately estimating the pieces of shrapnel.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I agree that Pyrex is not for roasting... liquid drips from the items being roasted, landing on the hot glass and causing a thermal shock.