When you’re making your morning cup of coffee and having breakfast, the cleanliness of your Keurig is most likely is the furthest thing from your mind. But it’s something you should definitely think about every once in a while.
Don’t wait until you find something gross floating around in your morning brew. There are parts of the Keurig you should be cleaning every week while other parts only need your attention every few months.
None of these parts are going to be difficult to tackle. Just keep reading and we’ll tell you how to clean your Keurig coffeemaker because it’s sure to be germy.
WHY A CLEAN KEURIG IS A HAPPY KEURIG
Unfortunately, your kitchen and everything in it attracts dangerous bacteria, mold, and even yeast if they aren’t cleaned often enough. Yet, there never seems like enough time in the day to clean it all.
Maybe you give your Keurig a quick wipe down while you’re in the midst of cleaning the countertops. It shines beneath the kitchen light and you move on with your day until you’re back in that same spot tomorrow, cleaning your counter and wiping down your Keurig.
But the truth is, the coffeemaker needs much more than a quick wipe down. If you want it and yourself to perform at peak level, you have to give your Keurig a much deeper clean.
There have been cases where Keurigs that weren’t well maintained developed mold and bacteria that made their owners sick. There are also less severe cases when dirty Keurig parts caused coffee to taste funny or pour slowly.
Either way, nothing is worth getting sick or having a funky tasting cup of coffee that took too long to pour in the morning.
Why Your Keurig Gets So Gross
You Keurig and essentially every other item you own that holds standing water are likely to become breeding grounds for bacteria and molds that can cause illness. Other items where bacteria are known to grow rapidly are traditional (non-Keurig) coffeepots, loofahs, sponges, and even water bottles if there’s a little left inside.
Keurig knows about these possible bacterial dangers. One of their spokeswomen told The Huffington Post that Keurig is “is committed to creating brewers and pods in a way that brews the perfect cup of coffee, tea, and other beverages while maintaining the highest safety standards.”
In fact, to keep consumers safe, Keurig created a descaling product that she recommended using every 3-6 months.
HOW TO CLEAN YOUR KEURIG COFFEEMAKER
There are a few tools you’re going to need before you get started with the cleaning process. Don’t worry, it isn’t anything too outlandish.
You may already have a couple of these things on hand.
- Some Keurig water filter refills
- White Vinegar
- Keurig Descaling Solution
- Keurig 2.0 Needle Cleaning Tool
These products won’t all be used at once. They are required for each of the different steps of the Keurig cleaning process.
Different parts need to be cleaned at different time intervals. Some need to be cleaned weekly, others every two months, and some every three to 6 months.
Here’s the full break down:
These parts if your Keurig need to be cleaned every week:
- Mug tray
- K-cup holder
- Water reservoir
Start by unplugging the coffee maker. Then clean the K-cup holder and mug tray in warm soapy water.
You won’t need anything special, your regular dish soap will be fine. Once they’re clean rinse, them off and set them aside on a lint-free towel. Allow the parts to air dry as wiping them with a cloth can leave bits of lint and fabric behind.
Next, you will need to remove the water filter. Then clean the surfaces with a dampened soapy rag.
When you’ve finished wiping down the exterior, you can plug the Keurig back in.
You will address your water filter every two months. This will keep your coffee tasting fresh.
First, you’ll need to soak a new cartridge for about 5 minutes in water. After that, rinse it off for a minute or so.
Then you’ll need to lean the mesh part of the bottom filter holder. After that, you will be able to place the new cartridge into the top water filter holder.
Press the lid down until it’s secure once the cartridge is in. Now you can place it back into the reservoir and you’re finished.
Every 3 to 6 Months
When hard water minerals build up in your coffee maker, its performance can become compromised. This is why the Keurig will need to be descaled every 3-6 months.
Use your best judgment with how often you perform this cleaning. How often it’s needed depends on how much coffee it makes.
Start by pouring white vinegar or the Keurig Descaling Solution into the reservoir. You’ll need about 10 ounces.
Put a mug in the mug tray and begin the brew cycle. Don’t use a K-cup with this.
Allow the Keurig to run as normal. When your mug is full, pour your cleaning agent into the sink.
So that tomorrow morning’s brew doesn’t taste like vinegar or the solution, go through the process again using 10 ounces of plain water.
When it’s Needed
There are other parts of your Keurig that should be cleaned whenever you see they need to be. For instance, if you see leftover grounds in the K-cup holder, you can clean them out with a sponge. This will keep them from making their way into a future cup.
If you notice your Keurig is brewing slower or less, you might need to clean the needles. Sometimes coffee grounds will get stuck in them. which will block the water’s entryway.
Before you clean these parts, make sure you unplug the Keurig. If you have a Keurig 2.0, you can clean the needles with the Keurig 2.0 Needle Cleaning Tool. If not, you can use a paperclip.
TIPS FOR YOUR BEST CUP OF COFFEE
Cleaning your coffee maker regularly will keep it performing its best while also giving you some great tasting coffee. But cleaning isn’t the only way to make sure your coffee always tastes its best.
Here are a few more tips for your best cup ever:
Use Cold Water
The water you use in your coffee should be cold and the grounds should be nice and fresh. If the water is warm or the grounds are old, you’ll end up with a stale tasting cup.
Add a Bit of Salt
No, we’re not going for a salty cup of coffee here. Just add the smallest pinch of salt you can grab to get the bitterness out of your K-Cup.
The little bit of sale will create a chemical reaction within your cup that will make the coffee less acidic. Swapping the bitterness out for a smoother taste.
Make a Hotter Cup
Keurig users often complain about their coffee not being hot enough after the cup has brewed. And there sadly isn’t an option to adjust the temperature.
If its been several hours since you used your Keurig, run a cycle with plain water before you make your coffee. This will pretty much preheat the coffee machine for your real cup. Meaning yours will be nice and hot.
Don’t Buy Too Much Coffee
There are some bargains you will get when buying in bulk that seem too good to pass up. Never allow coffee to be one of them.
Although K-cups are sealed very well, the smell and taste of your coffee can still degrade over time. In fact, experts say that coffee can start to lose its flavor within a half hour of it being ground.
Don’t Use the Last Few Drips
This tip isn’t for you if you like to multitask while your coffee brews in the morning. Pull your mug from the mug tray during the last few seconds of the cycle.
If you like a strong cup, you will notice the difference without the last of those watery bits. Don’t worry about the mess, it’s the reservoirs job to catch that overflow.
Just don’t forget to clean it.
If you like reading about how to clean your Keurig coffee maker, you’re going to love the rest of our blog!
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