Why Does Cookware Warp?

Why Does Cookware Warp?

Cookware warping refers to a conditioner where your pots or pans bend or twist out of shape. The main causes of cookware warping include:

  • Rinsing hot cookware with cold water.
  • Using cookware bigger than the burner.
  • Cookware made of thin material and overheating of the cookware
  • Single-ply material
  • Light aluminum material

Also, cookware made of single-ply materials warped easily compared to multi-ply cookware, and aluminum cookware tends to warp easily compared to steel cookware. 

When your regular cookware warps, it’s not a good experience because using them becomes a problem.

The pans and pots get out of shape, and oil flows on one side and makes your food cook unevenly. It is a horrible experience. Here are reasons your cookware is likely to warp:

Rinsing Hot Cookware with Cold Water

This is the leading cause of cookware warping. You should not rinse your hot cookware with cold water because this might result in a thermal shock…

(thermal shock is when an object which is either cold or hot is subjected to a rapid change of temperature, making it either expand or contract unevenly.)

In instances where the thermal shock is stronger than the cookware’s material, deformation, cracking, or warping occurs.

When hot cookware is suddenly exposed to cold water, the atoms in the cookware rapidly contract resulting in warping, and the reason you should let the cookware cool gradually because it cools evenly.

You can prevent this from happening by allowing your cookware to cool for about 10-15 minutes before cleaning it with warm water.

There are, however, some cookware companies that offer a warranty that covers warping. Such a warranty is mostly for high-end and excellent quality cookware.

The Cookware May Be Bigger Than the Burner

If your cookware is more significant than your stove’s burner, it may lead to warping. This happens because only a small section of the cookware is in contact with a heat source.

When the heat is too high, the part in contact with the source of heat expands and contracts before the rest of the cookware is affected.

The uneven expansion and of the cookware causes the cookware to either warp upward or downward. The appropriate remedy for this problem is to use the right cookware for your burners.

Cookware Maybe Made Of Thin Material

Cookware made of thin material is more likely to warp more than thick ones because the cookware’s thin walls expand and contract differently.

Thin material distributes unevenly, leading to warped cookware. A perfect solution for this problem is either using thick-walled cookware or using thin-walled cookware on low to medium heat.

Cookware Made Of Single Ply Materials Warp Easily Compared To Multi-Ply Cookware

Cookware such as pots and pans are made of materials including aluminum and copper or a combination of the two.

These materials allow even heat conduction and retain heat for a long time, making them the best compared to multi-ply cookware. They also do not warp easily.

Single-ply cookware warps easily because it doesn’t conduct heat evenly compared to multiply cookware.

When heat is concentrated in one area for a long time, the pan unevenly expands and contracts, resulting in warping. The center of the cookware is the part that is mainly affected.

A perfect remedy for this is to use multiply cookware.

Aluminum Cookware Tends To Warp Easily As Compared To Steel Cookware

Metals such as aluminum and copper are soft compared to stainless steel, making them susceptible to warping.

This property causes the cookware to expand and contract more easily.

In addition, aluminum absorbs heat quickly but doesn’t retain heat for long and may result in thermal shock, making the cookware warp.

To avoid this warping, go for cookware made of copper, thick aluminum, or cast iron bottom.


You can fix your warped cookware piece. But, you should know that the pan or pot will warp again.

Also, warping weakens the item’s molecular structure, and it can never go back to its original strength.

Just try to avoid the causes listed above, and your cookware will remain in good condition.