Created on: March 07, 2013
Cleaning your coffee maker is about more than just having it look clean. Your coffee will taste better and the machine will most likely last longer. You do not need to purchase any expensive products. Try some of these easy tricks and tips to make cleaning your coffee maker an easier process. Do check if there are any manufacturer specific requirements for your machine to avoid damage.
Basic coffee maker cleaning
Make sure the coffee basket is empty before you begin. Fill your coffee pot about halfway with white vinegar. Pour the vinegar into the water holder. You can pour the vinegar directly into the water section if you do not use a pot for measuring. Using more vinegar will not hurt, but do not overfill the machine.
Start a regular coffee brewing cycle and allow the vinegar to work through the coffee maker. Once the cycle is done, shut the heat off but allow the vinegar to sit in the pot for 10 to 20 minutes. Pour the vinegar back into the water section for a second cycle. Some users will add clean water to this second cycle to fill the machine completely. Start the brewing cycle again.
When the second cycle is complete, turn the heat off and allow the pot to sit with the vinegar for another 10 to 20 minutes. Pour the vinegar down your kitchen drain or disposal. This will help freshen the drain and possibly clean it as well. You may want to run one cycle of plain water through your coffee maker after the vinegar process. A clear water cycle will remove any trace of vinegar that could flavor your coffee.
This cleaning process should be performed once a month for machines that get heavy use. Once every two or three months is enough for machines that get average use. Vinegar will remove mineral deposits that can clog your machine and interfere with the taste of your coffee.
The coffee basket should not be forgotten in your cleaning process. Oily residue left behind in the basket can change the taste of your coffee over time. Grounds can also build up and enter your coffee pot or clog the system. Soaking your basket in warm sudsy water will remove most of the oil build-up. Use a soft toothbrush or small, clean paintbrush to clean between grooves. Even K-cup type machines should have the grounds area cleaned on a regular basis.
A pot with coffee burnt on can also be cleaned easily. Pour some salt and lemon juice into the pot, enough to cover the burnt area. Allow the mixture to sit for two to three hours. The process may need to be repeated for stubborn messes. You can also swirl the mixture in the pot to speed the process. Adding some ice cubes to the mix will help with the swirling method.
Remember to gently wipe down the exterior of your coffee maker to complete the cleaning. Do not use harsh cleansers or heavy scrubbers on the exterior or the warming plate.
Learn more about this author, B. Leslie Baird.
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