Top positive review
Great overall design - & as Pyrex, it is durable, strong & affordable, but not the most temperature-resistant glass product made
on October 12, 2014
I have used Pyrex products for a long time, and I really like these Measuring Cups. I have one of these in the 2-cup and one of these in the 1-cup and together I use them almost daily for cooking. For the price, I think these are an excellent value, well-labeled, and very good at resisting breakage from shock. However, these (like all home-use Pyrex products currently made) are made with a tempered glass that is not the best for heat-resistance. Consequently, I am more careful when using these and do not use them when larger temperature fluctuations are possible. So while I feel that these are a great match for most people, your own cooking habits & usage will determine how well-suited these are for you, personally.
===THE OVERALL GREAT DESIGN===
The basic design is solid and I really enjoy using these. The lettering is very easy to read, and in a color that maintains a good contrast even with darker liquids. The handle is quite thick, giving it both strength and comfort. The pour spout is also well-designed as it reduces dripping. Upkeep is also easy as there is nothing like being able to toss this in the dishwasher to save time. I also like how you can microwave these given it saves a step if you need to microwave a product you will then need to measure (ex: melting butter or frozen juice cubes.)
===PYREX COMPOSITION -- THE CHANGE IN COMPANY & COMPSITION===
Now we come to the composition...Pyrex has a somewhat confusing history here because the composition of their products (while visually almost the same) has changed pretty dramatically. Pyrex was historically made out of Borosilicate. This tempered glass is popular not only because it resists breaking better than your standard glass, but because it can withstand exceptionally wide temperature ranges. It also does at a good job at resting rapid temperature shifts. From the beginning until 1998/1999, Pyrex used borosilicate. Around 1998/1999, they sold the rights to the trademarked name, changed the main manufacturer of the products, moved the production facility itself, and shifted to a different glass called Soda-Lime Silicate glass.
===PYREX COMPOSITION -- BOROSILICATE VS. SODA-LIME, AND THE "EXPLODING PYREX"===
The next natural question is often, "what is the difference between the two types of glass?"
Soda-lime silica glass is much cheaper to produce, and has slightly better resistance to breakage than borosilicate does. However, it does NOT have the temperature resistance of borosilicate. This is most pronounced when the glass is exposed to a fast temp shift. And when soda-lime glass fails from this cause, the failure is often quite violent.
This is where the "exploding Pyrex" came from, in which multiple sources reported catastrophic failures of Pyrex products, all of which were verified to be soda-lime glass Pyrex (and none of which were borosilicate products from the pre-1998 products.) There are limitations to the research because no one knows the exact conditions all of the soda-lime Pyrex products failed at, BUT, what it shows us is that borosilicate is a better material when temperature resistance is involved (and especially when temperature shifts are involved.) While soda lime Pyrex is generally strong and performs well, it does not have the performance of a borosilicate and it should not be treated the same way that a borosilicate product would.
===PYREX COMPOSITION -- THE IMPLICATIONS FOR YOU, AS THE OWNER===
That leads to the ultimate question of, "what does this mean to me and why is knowing any of this important at all?"
Well, if knowledge is power, then it is critical that buyers understand the above because the implications (and consequences) can be tremendous. Pyrex makes it very, very clear that their products should NOT see rapid temperature changes (and technically, one should work to avoid these rapid shifts with any glass.) The problem here is that it isn't always avoidable and cooking is often partly force of habit. Kitchen appliances themselves can also cause wide temp shifts. And if you have owned Pyrex for many years, it is important to understand that the newer soda-lime glass Pyrex products CANNOT withstand the same temperature conditions as your older borosilicate Pyrex products. All of these stresses a need for caution with usage.
===SO ARE CURRENT PYREX PRODUCTS A GOOD MATCH???===
Pyrex's use of soda lime silicate glass has allowed them to make high-quality glassware at a price that is very, very affordable (borosilicate is expensive to produce and often translates to a higher purchase price.) They are well-designed, they do a great job at resisting breakage, and they generally hold up really well. But it is your own application will affect how suitable it is or is not for your lifestyle.
If you use you measuring cups to often blend boiling hot contents, or it is going to see a hot-hot to a cool-cool shift, these Pyrex Measuring Cups are probably not as good a choice as a borosilicate product.
If usage is more general-usage without extreme temperature fluctuations, these Measuring Cups are an awesome choice as they have a solid design, are easy-to-read, are affordable, and will last many years. Like most Pyrex products, the overall design here is great and at a very affordable price. Chances are, this is a great product for your kitchen. But YMMV.