Brewing Health: How to Safely Clean and Maintain Your Coffee Maker

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Updated on:

September 20, 2023

Beyond the Beans: Tackling Coffee Maker Cleaning Like a Pro

Why do coffee makers need cleaning?

Coffee makers are the unsung heroes of the kitchen because they always provide us with the best coffee. However, the surroundings are chilly and damp. How can I understand the significance of growth in the same circumstances? Molds could be present in your coffee maker. Additionally, minerals build up in coffee makers. The main elements in water are calcium, magnesium, and sodium. However, they could leave behind a mineral buildup that damage your coffee makers and mugs.

This may eventually hinder the effective drip operation of your brewer. If you don't frequently clean the brewing basket and other components, you might also notice that the residue makes your coffee more and more bitter. Additionally, the wet environment of remaining coffee grinds can promote the development of bacteria, yeast, and mold.

In this guide, we will show you how to clean a coffee maker and bring it back to a tip top shape with a steam cleaner.

Key Takeaways:

  • Regular Cleaning is Vital: Coffee makers should be cleaned monthly to prevent mineral buildup and bacteria growth.
  • Diverse Cleaning Methods: The text explains how to clean various coffee makers, including drip and Keurig machines, using methods like white vinegar and steam cleaning.
  • Enhanced Coffee Experience: Keeping your coffee maker clean not only ensures better-tasting coffee but also prolongs the machine's life, making it a worthwhile practice.

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Table of Contents (Show)

Table of Contents (Hide)

How to Clean a Coffee Maker for a Better Tasting Morning Cup?

Your coffee maker or coffee poy may look like it's clean. A clean coffee maker can show a few signs: oils and minerals accumulate on your coffee maker and pots, leaving them greasy and causing stains. But germs and bacteria we're not seeing can cause more serious problems.

According to a recent NSF international report coffee machines are the five most germiest in the world containing 50% of the tested reservoir containing yeast or mould. The bacteria can cause an allergic response and infection, which is why your coffee maker can cause serious damage.

clean a coffee pot

How to clean a coffee pot

Plan to clean your coffee maker once a month if you use it every day. Only once every three to six months could be necessary for occasional coffee consumers. However, you should clean your coffee maker if you see obvious accumulation around the pot or basket or if your coffee tastes strange. Make sure to have no coffee residue before beginning the cleaning process.

What you will need

  • distilled white vinegar
  • water
  • lint free cloth
  • paper filter

Step 1: Fill the coffee maker with vinegar and water

Fill the reservoir of your coffee maker with a 50-50 solution of white distilled vinegar and water to start cleaning it. If your coffee maker has a particularly bad buildup, you can increase the vinegar to water ratio. In addition to cleaning the coffee maker and carafe, the vinegar also dissolves any built-up mineral deposits.

Step 2: Run the brew cycle

After inserting a filter in the brew basket, start the coffee maker. Turn off the coffee machine halfway through brewing, and depending on how much buildup needs to be removed, let the remaining vinegar solution soak in the carafe and reservoir for between 30 and 60 minutes.

Step 3: Cleaning the filter basket

Put the coffee filter basket in the solution of soapy water. Allow it to soak if the coffee grit is still there. Gently scrub the filter with a kitchen sponge, being sure to get into any crevices.

Step 4: End the cycle and flush

Restart the coffee maker and let it finish the brewing process. Pour away the vinegar solution after discarding the paper filter, if there is one.

You can now remove the coffee maker's vinegar flavor and smell. Put a filter in the basket, add new water to the reservoir, start the coffee maker, and allow it to finish the brewing process. The filter should be taken out, the water emptied, and a new cycle started with fresh water. Use a clean cloth to clean your coffee maker and coffee pot.

clean a drip coffee maker

How to clean a drip coffee maker

Step 1: Remove the brew basket and filter

Discard the grounds and any disposable paper filters after removing the brew basket. Remove any permanent filters you may have as well.

Step 2: Solution

Hot water should be partially poured into your sink or a sizable container.

Water with dish soap added. Use a brand that is ideally designed for oil removal.

Step 3: Clean the coffee maker

In the hot, soapy water, add the brew basket and permanent filter (if you have one). Coffee grounds and oily residue should be thoroughly removed by washing with a gentle cloth or sponge.

Step 4: Clean the carafe

Throw away any leftover coffee and give the carafe a warm water rinse. Clean the carafe thoroughly with a soft cloth or sponge after adding a small amount of the soapy water.

Step 5: Rinse

Warm water should be used to rinse the carafe, permanent filter, and brew basket. Place them on a drying rack after wiping with a dry cloth.

Step 6: Inspection

To clean off any residue, wash down the coffee maker's inner lid, outside lid, and brewing area using a soft cloth dipped in soapy water. After that, wet a lint free cloth with fresh water to remove any remaining soap.

clean your Keurig coffee maker

How to clean your Keurig coffee maker

A Keurig coffee maker is shaped a little differently than a regular coffee pot.

What you will need

  • dish soap
  • toothbrush
  • lint free cloth
  • water
  • white vinegar

Step 1: Wash the exterior of the Keurig coffee maker

Fill the reservoir of your coffee maker with a vinegar solution (mix vinegar and water with equal parts) to start cleaning it. If your coffee maker has a particularly bad buildup, you can increase the vinegar to water ratio. In addition to cleaning the coffee maker and carafe, the vinegar also destroys any built-up mineral deposits.

Step 2: Clean the inside of the coffee maker

Use a clean toothbrush to carefully brush out any coffee grinds that have become caught in the K-Cup holder while the removable parts are being washed or soaked. Use a moist cloth to clean any accumulation while you're inside. To complete the task, wipe the outside with a towel that has been soaked with all-purpose cleanser.

If you see any limescale building (white crusty buildup), just apply some white vinegar to a portion of your cloth, place it on the problem area, and let soak for a few minutes. The white spots should fade before your eyes if you wipe again. Reassembling the Keurig coffee maker will be the last step

Step 3: Clean with vinegar solution

Make sure there are no pods inside the Keurig coffee maker before you begin cleaning it. On the tray, set a sizable empty mug. Remove the water filter, if any, and empty the reservoir of any remaining water. Fill the reservoir up to the top with a 1:1 mixture of distilled vinegar and water. Turn on your Keurig, choose the largest cup size, and let the vinegar mixture go through the device as many times as necessary for the "More/Add Water" light to appear. After each brew, empty the hot liquid from the mug into a sink.

Step 4: Let the solution sit and rinse the water reservoir

Give the Keurig coffee maker at least 30 minutes to rest. After the allotted time has passed, remove the reservoir and wash it under water to remove any remaining vinegar. There may be a need for several rinses.

Step 5: Run the brew cycle with water

To remove the vinegar from the machine, repeat Step 3 but this time use only clean water. Put another bare cup on the drip tray. Fill the reservoir with water all the way to the top. Utilize the largest cup setting, and let the water cycle through the machine until it empties. Your freshly cleaned Keurig is now prepared for your upcoming morning brew!

coffee machine cleaning with steam cleaner

Cleaning a coffee maker with a steam cleaner

fortador volt mini steam cleaner

Fortador Volt Mini

For cleaning and sanitizing a range of items, including all types of automobiles as well as houses, workplaces, medical facilities, and many various types of commercial organizations, steam cleaning has emerged as the favored method.

Eco friendly method

Steam cleaning is eco-friendly since it can cleanse and deodorize a variety of surfaces with little to no additional detergent or other agents. The primary benefit of steaming is its capacity to eliminate and kill over 99% of bacteria, viruses, germs, and other pathogens. For many different cleaning tasks, using a sizable diesel-powered seamer is not viable.

The Fortador steam cleaner is also able to clean kitchen appliances like your coffee maker. Steaming the outside of a drip coffee maker will kill bacteria.

tips of good coffee

Tips to maintain cleanliness of your coffee maker for longer

  • Coffee should be brewed using demineralized water.
  • If you're filling the water reservoir with the carafe, only do so if you wash it with hot, soapy water after each use.
  • Never keep used grounds that are damp in the coffee maker for a long period of time.


Your coffee maker will function properly and last longer with routine maintenance, which is rather easy.

The residue may accumulate more quickly if your home has hard water (water with a high mineral content) or if you frequently fill the water reservoir of your coffee maker from a rinsed carafe rather than a clean one. In this situation, a monthly clean-up is advised.

Some coffee machines have a cleaning indicator that is audible or visible, and that typically occurs before a forced downtime. By being proactively proactive with maintenance, you can reduce the downtime. Other brewers have a setup for their cleaning cycle that is often described in the instructions. Always adhere to the cleaning guidelines provided by the manufacturer.

About the Authors

Sabrina Tretyakova
In the world of cleanliness and hygiene, Sabrina Tretyakova stands as a beacon of expertise and dedication. As an ISSA-certified cleaning technician, Sabrina brings a wealth of knowledge and three years of unwavering commitment to her profession. Having served a staggering 1,200 clients
Lev Tretyakov
With over 25 years in the industry, I bring extensive sales expertise in heavy equipment across diverse sectors. Pioneered the first CAD/CAM school in CIS countries. Proud owner of Miami's premier auto detailing hub, Totaal Steam Detailing, hailed as the finest in Miami-Dade by Google.

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