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How to Clean a Coffee Maker

May 18, 2024

Are you someone who brews their own coffee? If so, you’re in the right place.

In this post, we’ll be going over how to clean and maintain your coffee maker so that you can make a fresh pot of joe every time!

The Importance of Cleaning Your Coffee Maker

Coffee makers are a haven for residue and other contaminants, with some studies finding them to be one of the germiest places in the home. But it’s not just about hygiene; those remnants of coffee grounds and water minerals can also compromise your brew’s flavor and aroma.

By maintaining a clean coffee maker, you’ll be able to make better-tasting coffee and express the character of your selected beans.

The Impact on Coffee Taste

importance of cleaning your coffee makerCoffee is all about the oils and flavors extracted during the brewing process, but when old coffee oils turn rancid, they can leave an unwelcome bitterness.

While cleaning the appliance is important, the last thing you want to use is soap – that will leave a residue that will alter the taste of your coffee. Opt for specialized cleaning products like ACTIVE Coffee Maker Cleaner Tablets instead. They are specifically designed to keep your coffee tasting great without any soapy aftertaste.

Maintaining Your Coffee Maker’s Efficiency

A coffee maker with hard water buildup will not only brew slower but can also overheat, leading to inconsistent cups.

That’s why regular descaling is so important – you want to maintain clear pathways inside your coffee maker to ensure a proper brew cycle.

Remember, using a descaler like ACTIVE Coffee Machine Descaler Liquid is not just about taste—it’s also about performance.

Extending the Life of Your Coffee Maker

A machine that’s well looked after is less prone to malfunction and will save you from the hassle and costs of sudden repairs.

For example, regular cleaning and descaling will extend the lifespan of your coffee maker significantly. It’s also worth noting that many manufacturers require regular maintenance as part of their warranty coverage, so neglecting your coffee maker’s cleanliness could end up costing you more than just a good cup of coffee.

Everyday Cleaning Tips for Coffee Makers

Regular cleaning might sound tedious, but it’s surprisingly simple and goes a long way in preventing the buildup that can ruin your coffee’s taste and your coffee machine’s efficiency.

Whether you own a traditional drip coffee maker, a sophisticated espresso machine, or a handy Keurig, cleaning your coffee maker daily is crucial for its performance.

Cleaning Your Drip Coffee Maker

Drip coffee makers are known for their simplicity and convenience. But even the simplest machines need love.

First things first, make sure to dispose of the coffee grounds after each use. It’s also a good idea to give the filter a quick wipe.

Once a week, take it a step further by washing all removable parts, like the coffee pot and filter in hot soapy water. If your drip coffee maker has a glass carafe, you can use a mixture of hot water and a bit of dish soap to keep it sparkling and stain-free.

Cleaning Your Espresso Machine

cleaning espresso machineDaily maintenance should include purging the group head to clear out coffee residue and steaming the wand before and after use to prevent milk buildup.

Don’t forget to rinse the portafilter and basket under warm water and give the machine’s exterior a loving wipe-down with a damp cloth.

Cleaning Your Keurig Coffee Maker

Keurig machines are known for being convenient, but they still need regular cleaning to operate smoothly. Make it a habit to rinse the drip tray and clean the pod holder daily to avoid clogs and buildup.

A quick wipe of the exterior will also keep it looking new, and don’t forget to leave the lid open after every use to let the interior dry out.

Deep Cleaning Techniques for Coffee Makers

Every now and then, you’ll want to give your coffee machine a deep clean and that’s where products like ACTIVE Coffee Maker Cleaner Tablets and ACTIVE Coffee Machine Descaler Liquid come in.

These products are specifically formulated to tackle the tough stuff—oils, mineral deposits, and scale—that can affect your coffee’s flavor and your machine’s performance.

Why Choose ACTIVE Products?

ACTIVE tablets are pre-measured, which simplifies the deep cleaning process. They’re also non-toxic and safe for all coffee machine brands so you won’t have to worry about introducing anything harmful into your next brew.

How to Use ACTIVE Cleaners

Using ACTIVE cleaners for coffee machines is straightforward. For the Coffee Maker Cleaner Tablets, simply follow these steps:

  1. Place one tablet in the water reservoir

  2. Fill the reservoir with warm water

  3. Run a cleaning cycle. This process will wash away the oil residues and mineral buildup that can interfere with your coffee’s flavor and machine’s functionality.

  4. After the cycle, run a brew cycle with just water to rinse out any remaining solution, and you’re done

For descaling, mix the ACTIVE Coffee Machine Descaler Liquid with water in the reservoir and initiate a cleaning cycle. Afterward, rinse thoroughly by running a few cycles of clean water through the machine.

How Often Should You Deep Clean Your Coffee Maker?

For optimal performance and flavor, we recommend deep cleaning your coffee maker once every three months. Regular maintenance will help prevent the build-up of mineral deposits and residue.

However, if you’re a heavy user or if your coffee maker is in a commercial or office setting, you might need to deep clean more frequently—perhaps even bi-weekly—to maintain optimal performance and coffee flavor.

Alternative Cleaning Methods

alternative cleaning methodsThere are several alternative cleaning methods that you can use if commercial products such as ACTIVE are not available. For example, you can use common household items like baking soda, lemon juice, and white vinegar.

Baking Soda

Baking soda is a powerhouse when it comes to cleaning. To use it for your coffee maker, follow these steps:

  1. Dissolve a quarter cup of baking soda in water

  2. Run the mixture through a brewing cycle in your coffee maker

  3. Pause the cycle and let the mixture sit in the machine for a few minutes

  4. Complete the brewing cycle

  5. Run a few cycles of clean water through the coffee maker to ensure there’s no baking soda residue left behind

Lemon Juice

Lemon juice is another fantastic natural cleaner, thanks to its acidic properties that can help dissolve mineral deposits. Here’s how to use it to clean your coffee maker:

  1. Mix lemon juice with an equal part of water

  2. Run the mixture through a brew cycle like you would with other cleaning solutions

  3. Make sure to rinse your coffee maker thoroughly afterward to remove any lingering citrus taste


Vinegar is perhaps the most well-known cleaning alternative due to its acidity and ability to dissolve limescale.

A vinegar solution, made of equal parts water and distilled white vinegar, can work wonders on your coffee maker.

However, be sure to rinse your machine thoroughly afterward to remove any vinegar taste that might otherwise seep into your next batch of coffee.

Caring for Coffee Maker Components

The carafe, filter basket, and water reservoir all play crucial roles in the brewing process, and each needs its own cleaning regimen to ensure the best coffee possible.

Carafe Cleaning Tips

The carafe should be rinsed with warm water after each use and thoroughly cleaned with hot soapy water or a baking soda solution every week.

For those pesky coffee stains, a baking soda paste or even a scrub with lemon rinds and rock salt can help restore your carafe’s shine.

Filter Basket Maintenance

filter basket maintenanceCoffee grounds and oil tend to gather in the filter basket, which is why you want to clean it regularly.

Simply rinse it with warm water after each use, and if it’s dishwasher safe, consider giving it a cycle for a deeper clean.

For metal filters, a vinegar soak and gentle scrub will keep it in brewing shape.

Cleaning the Water Reservoir

Given the water reservoir’s susceptibility to limescale and contaminants, regular cleaning with soapy water or vinegar is a must. If it’s dishwasher safe, take advantage of that feature for a hassle-free clean.

Always leave the lid open after cleaning to let it dry completely and prevent contamination.

Keeping Your Coffee Maker Clean

By incorporating daily rinses, weekly washes, and regular deep cleans with ACTIVE into your routine, you’ll be able to maintain not only the taste and efficiency of your coffee maker but also its longevity.

So, take pride in your coffee ritual and give your coffee maker the care it deserves.

Key Takeaways

  • Regular cleaning of your coffee maker will help prevent contaminants, and coffee oil residue, all of which can affect the taste and hygiene of your brew

  • Proper maintenance and descaling with specialized products like ACTIVE will not only enhance flavor but will also increase the efficiency and lifespan of your coffee maker

  • Deep cleaning every month with products like ACTIVE Cleaner Tablets and Descaler Liquid, or alternative household items like vinegar or lemon juice, is essential for optimal machine performance

How to Clean a Coffee Maker – FAQs

What’s the best way to clean a coffee maker?

how to clean a coffee maker faqsACTIVE Cleaner Tablets and Descaler Liquid are the best options when it comes to cleaning your coffee maker. They are specifically designed to remove oils, residues, and stains, and will enhance the flavor of your brew.

How do you clean the inside of a coffee maker with vinegar?

To clean the inside of a coffee maker with vinegar, mix equal parts white vinegar and water, fill the reservoir, and run half of a drip cycle. Then, run a cycle with water twice to ensure the vinegar smell is gone.

How often should I clean my coffee maker?

You should rinse and wipe your coffee maker daily after every use.

Consider using specialty cleaning products like ACTIVE Coffee Maker Cleaner Tablets or Descaler Liquid every month, or more often for heavy use or commercial settings.

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Lucas Bennett

Meet Lucas Bennett, a former coffee shop owner and current espresso aficionado. With years of hands-on experience in the coffee industry, Lucas now pours his expertise into writing comprehensive guides. His passion for coffee shines through in his meticulous tips on brewing the perfect cup and maintaining high-performing equipment. He takes pride in helping enthusiasts and novices alike elevate their coffee and espresso experiences.

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