How to Clean a Coffee Maker
Waking up early in the morning, nothing gets you in the right mood for the day ahead than a nice cup of freshly-brewed coffee. A staple mood-setter and wake-up beverage, we almost always enjoy our early morning coffee fix through a coffee maker. Our coffee consumption usually continues throughout the day.
This subjects our coffee maker to various degrees of wear and tear. It also might cause degraded quality of coffee due to the contamination from sediments, lime and molds. There is also a possible health risk involved. From these arises the necessity to clean our coffee makers.
A coffee maker’s water reservoir is usually victim to sediment buildup. Tap water usually contains large amounts of minerals which eventually build up. As this area is commonly very visible it is easy to see if any sediment accumulation has occurred. Wipe and clean the water reservoir area.
Use vinegar in cleaning your coffee maker
It’s also advisable to use a vinegar and water solution so that the water passageways are also chemically cleaned. The solution breaks down the sediment buildup. It would be necessary to wash and run the reservoir using fresh water to remove traces of vinegar taste. Using filtered or distilled water will significantly reduce the possible amount of sedimentation that will form on your coffee maker. It is also very important to regularly clean the water filters.
It is important to clean the innards of your coffee maker to maintain adequate performance. Minute amounts of leftover coffee grounds as well as dried-up coffee bean oils can build up over time and cause problems including foul odors, molds and bad-tasting coffee. Thoroughly remove any leftover coffee from the pot as well as the filters and the filter bed. If you are using a single cup coffee maker be sure to remove any pods. Remove any coffee bean oil buildup by using the water and vinegar solution.
For best results it is best to complete a whole brew cycle using the water and vinegar solution. This assures you that all the passageways of water are cleaned. After a full brew cycle allow the coffee maker with the solution to sit for at least fifteen minutes for the vinegar content to react with the impurities and break down sediments and oils. After this step thoroughly clean your coffee maker to remove any vinegar then complete 2 brew cycles using only pure water to remove any remaining unwanted vinegar taste from your coffee maker.
These steps are applicable to most pod or drip-type coffee makers. Cleaning other types like the French press and coffee pots are more straightforward as these items are washable. Espresso machines however are a bit more complicated but generally follow the concepts described above.
Cleaning espresso machines basically start from physically cleaning each part especially the group heads, the steam wands, portafilter and the basket. After this it is generally a good time to flush your system using the recommended solution or detergent. The detergent breaks down the oil buildup in your machine. It might be necessary to repeat the flushing until no more gunk appears on the water. Afterwards clean and flush twice using only water to remove traces of detergent.
Cleaning your coffee maker is very simple and will make sure you enjoy your unit for many years to come. What more, it also gives you the discriminating coffee drinker better-tasting coffee!