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on October 25, 2014
The stainless Presto pressure cooker is a four-star unit, but I take one star off for Presto using rust-prone non-stainless screws to attach all three handles. After the very first washing in my dishwasher, they rusted. I took them out, cleaned the rust off the stainless and plastic parts, and replaced the hardware with stainless versions. I elected to use two split-ring stainless washers with each screw instead of the original lock washer type that looks like a cutting wheel with teeth. After many washings there has been no rust and no trouble.

My stainless replacement parts (includes replacing the lid-lock screws, which didn't show rust but I replaced them anyway):

#10-24 x 3/4 in stainless "round head combo" screws
#8-32 x 3/4 in stainless "round head combo" screws
#8-32 x 1/2 in stainless "flat head philips" screws
#10 stainless split lock washers
#8 stainless split lock washers

The pressure cooker itself works fine, time tested design if simple and minimalist in features. Apart from the crappy mounting hardware for the handles, it is a fine unit for everyday use.
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on July 29, 2012
Most of the 5 star review you will see in Amazon are from 2006 - 6 year back.
I purchased this item on May 3rd 2012 and it is delivered to us by May 4th 2012. This is our first presto cooker / stainless steel cooker. There is rust all over the lid. in the edges ( see pictures in amazon) , near the steam vent . the screws at handle. all this in just 2 and half months (75 days). I called up Amazon - their warranty expired on 30 days. now i have to deal with presto...i will update more about my experience.

I am pretty much sure that quality has deteriorated over period of time. Very Poor......

Update : After trying cleaning and other tricks. finally Called Up presto . They won't take the item back or give a replacement . instead - they send me screws , stating that the body will never get rust because it is pure stainless steel. I tried to open the screws but it did not work , because screws were badly rusted and slipped on philips screw driver.
I called up again and this time they are ready to give me a Prepaid UPS Label. I have send the item to them , yet to hear from them.

Update (02/20/2013) : Ok , i got the pressure cooker back from Presto couple days back , they changed the handle and screws. I could not find any rust or stain anywhere ( so i will give 3 stars , increase in 2) . I guess the problem was the LOW QUALITY screws. The screws were so bad that the rust stained over the body and edges .It was difficult to figure out whether the body got rust or not. Whatever Poor Quality of Screws created all this mess. I will post new picture soon , i think the OVERALL QUALITY OF STAINLESS STEEL IS GOOD. If you complain to presto they will send you better quality of screws . If you delay on those screws then the threads will wear off and then it will be impossible to change them. Just want to add one more point . I use this cooker everyday , so i will wait and see how these screws performs.

Update (02/01/2014) : Here is the update - i think i was too late on the first screws and what happened is even after replacing with stainless steel screws the lid will keep getting rust and i ran out of patience and finally i gave up. Just want to add - it's the lid which keep getting the rust ( near the pressure valve and handle screws) . The body is still intact and has no rust. I no longer use this to pressure cook.

I am considering 2 options
1) to buy presto from store like KOHLS ( just because they have awesome return policy - [Return any item, anytime, for any reason.]
2) to buy Hawkins Pressure cooker - [...]
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on April 1, 2015
After about 2 years of reliable use, the bottom melted.

Potential observations to prevent this from happening to anyone:
* The temperature required to sustain steam was higher than usual. Normally on this burner I reduce the setting down to 5 once steam is escaping from the main vent. Today I needed to use a burner setting of 7 to maintain a gentle rattle of the weight. (For comparison, 6 is the setting I usually use cook scrambled eggs when I'm not in a hurry, 7 is the setting I use to cook bacon & 8.5 is what I use to stir fry.)

* Molten metal began to leak about minute 18 according to my kitchen timer.

* Steam was still escaping from the top throughout and there was water left over at the end. The food within wasn't burned, either.
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on November 5, 2016
The metal has melt after just 5 months of rarely use.
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on December 12, 2015
We use this pan multiple times per week to cook beans. The pressure regulator has darkened and rusted and it no longer allows any steam to escape. This led to the rubber safety value popping last week, spraying our entire kitchen with boiling hot black bean juice. A lot of damage resulted from this incident. Without the regulator, steam escapes normally through the valve stem, it is not clogged. The regulator / valve opening must be defective. I tried scrubbing the regulator, no luck. It no longer allows steam to escape unless it is held in a tilted position. Be very careful when using this pan, always make sure steam is venting properly.
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on February 10, 2015
I've had mine for about a year. Use it almost everyday. No problem with lose handles, rusty screws and blown out safety valves. Works great and does what its supposed to do which is cook fast and produces fall off the bone tender stews, soups and everything else I put in. Beans work great, no unevenly cooked ones.

The screws have a hint of orange in some spots but certainly not rusted. I live in 90% humidity and at this rate these should last 20 or more years. No blown out valves if you watch the cooker and never let it get overpressured.

I use it with an induction cooker and on the stove. The stove has better coverage of the base and is used for cooking short times with little water in the pot so it comes to pressure quickly. When I'm making something that needs more cooking time I'll use the induction. My induction cooker doesn't have a very big coil so doesn't heat the entire base of the pot but when used to cook a stew or make stock its fine. I can bring it to pressure and then set the power level very precisely such that the rocker barely moves, set the time then walk away knowing that the cooker will turn itself off so this gives me the benefit of an electric pot.

Its easy to clean. Not much sticks at high temps and pressure. Occasionally requires a bit of scrubbing if I use very little and thick liquid and there's a fond but most times there's enough liquid that this doesn't happen. Even if stuff sticks it usually comes off easily with a little scrubbing.
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on August 12, 2017
I had really never used a pressure cooker before getting this, but wanted to try it. I'm glad I did. It makes wonderful meals quickly. I really got it for cooking dried beans, which usually take hours to cook. It's a little more complicated to use, but it's fun to watch the pressure regulator dance on top of the pot. I'm usually a low and slow cook so cranking this to high to get it started took getting used to. Does it really save time? You still need to cut and dice the ingredients, brown the meat, put the top on to cook, then let it cool down, which all takes time, but the cooking time is short. There is a learning curve to the cooking times. I burned a chicken cacciatore by cooking it 20 minutes, Still tasted great, but the bottom of the pan had to be scraped clean. Follow the recipes, look on line for pressure cooker recipes, and experiment away. Pot roast is a wonderful meal to start with. Good luck and have fun.
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on February 2, 2014
I was excited to try my new pressure cooker after my old one of 20 years died. It worked beautifully for my split pea soup. However,after opening, I wanted to wipe the soup from the top of the pan side, and as I did so, the paper towel came back with not only pea soup on it but grey residue. I poured the soup out, rinsed the pan, and wiped the inside of it again. Each time there was a grey residue on my white paper towel. My husband had cleaned the pressure cooker before use as recommended, and because I did not know he had done that, I cleaned it again before cooking. I have thrown my soup away. How much of that grey stuff was in my soup? I am not a picky person, I will pick up and eat food I have dropped on the floor, but I do not want to ingest metal residues from this pan.
UPDATE: Wow! when I wrote this last night I had only looked at the pan part. This morning I looked at the lid and it was covered in black spots which looked black and sooty when I wiped the top with a paper towel. I have cleaned the whole lot again and I am going to experiment today with cooking just a bag of dried beans.
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on January 8, 2014
The excellent instruction manual that comes with this cooker lists appropriate cooking times for many kinds of food. I really appreciate cooking brown rice in only twelve minutes and pre-soaked beans in less than that. One thing that should be understood is the safety mechanism which prevents steam from building up pressure unless the cover is closed completely as it should be. There is a cylindrical metal plug in a hole in the handle which gets pushed up by steam pressure (not talking about the central steam vent pipe capped by a heavy wobbling rocker). If the lid is not closed properly, an ingeniously designed sliding flange in the handle prevents the cylindrical plug from rising up to close the hole completely, therefore allowing steam to continuously vent out of the unsealed hole. This prevents a dangerous explosion of a loose lid. The first time I used the cooker, I did not realize that a bowl which I had placed inside to contain the rice was preventing the sliding flange from allowing the cylindrical plug to rise. When I finally realized how the flange was supposed to work, I moved the interior bowl away from the locking mechanism (after everything had cooled down, of course) and then everything worked fine. If you feel some resistance in closing the lid, don't force anything. Make sure the sliding flange is not preventing the cylindrical plug from rising. Once you see this, you will understand it without so many words.

I especially enjoy the cheerful action of the central rocker (pressure regulator) when pressure builds up and steam begins to sputter out of the central vent pipe. The heavy rocker wobbles merrily reminding me of an old fashioned steam locomotive chugging along. This action informs me how much I can turn the heat down to keep on cooking without wasting water or energy.
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on March 14, 2015
Presto has always been my favorite and this one is just like all the others I have worn out over many years. This is the smallest I have ever owned but I may buy the 4-quart, too, as my old hands don't like to lift much anymore. This is, also, my first stainless steel one. I got it yesterday and used it right away. It is much easier to handle than my larger ones but I couldn't do without them when I have to feed a crowd in a hurry. I am really happy to have this new addition to my Presto family of cooking appliances!
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