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All-Clad 2qt saute pan is warped - how can I prevent this?

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I noticed that my AC 2qt saute pan is not sitting evenly on a flat surface - there is quite a bit of wobble. It is even worse on my burner b/c the coils aren't flat...in fact, the front of the pan sits about 1/4 inch above the stove surface when on one of the coils. I hardly used that pan - is warping a problem typically caused by use or is it a manufacturing defect? Also, is there anything I can do to fix it? I got the pan at Williams-Sonoma, I believe (several years ago), but never noticed or examined the alignment. Anyway, as I am investing in some good cookware, I want to ensure that my other pans don't end up like this!

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  1. Hi, kimbers:

    The answer is that, in normal use, it's both. Your pan probably would never have warped without heat. And it probably would have remained flat without having too much unrelieved stress.

    The fix is to send it back to A-C for replacement. Even if you had the die and 80T press to true the bottom, that stress is going to mess up something else, like the walls.

    Is it possible your pan was subjected to very high heat? And/Or that it was quenched in cold water? These are the biggies when it comes to user error, although there's some crossover with the unrelieved stress problem.

    A-C's traditional tri-ply designs work very well (for clad). Your pan has a sheet of 0.41mm SS on either side of a thicker layer of aluminum or copper. Demeyere *claims* its newer, 1980s designs are warp-proof by virtue of using 3 separate thin steel layers ("TriplInduc" technology). I think this is mostly pan advertising hype, but Demeyere is known not to warp as often or as badly as some other brands. This may have to do with Demeyere using disks of steel in just the base, whose stresses remain near zero when the pan is made. Whereas in full-clad like A-C, all layers in the metal sandwich are subject to the stresses imparted by the press.

    I'm less impressed with A-C than most here, but it's still very good clad. And they charge enough/too much, so their customer service is pretty tolerant--I seriously doubt A-C would give you any guff on replacing your pan if that's what you wanted.

    Aloha,
    Kaleo

    1. kimbers324 said:
      "I hardly used that pan - is warping a problem typically caused by use or is it a manufacturing defect?

      I got the pan at Williams-Sonoma, I believe (several years ago), but never noticed or examined the alignment."

      All-Clad have people that inspect every piece of cookware and they leave a card with the inspector's name on it. I would think it's harder to warp a small sauce pan than say a 4 qt saute pan. The wider cooking surface should be more prone to warping. You should mention your case to WS then to AC see if they can help you out. Maybe this one got past their inspector.

      I know it's not an apples to apples comparison. But my d5 2qt which I bought from Homegoods two years ago still sits flat on the glass induction. The d5s are built like a tank. I ways inspect my purchase before I hand over the money.

      1. Hey Kimbers, I've got a set of ss Emeril's by All-Clad that I have been cooking on daily for about ten years. I have a glass top range, and those pans haven't shown any wobble at all. (Warping becomes very evident on a glass top, especially when you go to put your eggs in your favorite non-stick to fry and they both run down to the handle end).

        I'm with Kaleo. You paid for the good stuff. Send it back.