How To Clean A Coffee Maker Without Vinegar

What does it take for your coffee maker to serve for a long time and not create problems for you out of the blue? The first is to read the instructions, and the second, probably the most important thing, is to provide her with good care, that is, cleaning.

Most of you are well aware of what a coffee machine is. Many even know how to care for coffee makers. But some just want to drink freshly brewed aromatic coffee every day, without delving into cleaning. This is because they do not want to burden themselves with unnecessary worries. But the quality of the drink, its temperature, and the appearance of the foam directly depend on the care of the coffee machine.

A coffee machine is an expensive apparatus for making delicious coffee, but for it to function well, it needs regular cleaning. Coffee makers, just like any household appliance that heats water, limescale forms. If you do not regularly descale the heating elements, the energy consumption increases, the operation of the device deteriorates, and it may fail in the long run.

How to clean a coffee maker without vinegar

Since vinegar is not the best cleaning agent to use in coffee machines, lemon juice or baking soda can be used instead. Lemon juice can help in cleaning the coffee maker effectively, just like vinegar. The best thing is that it doesn’t leave an unpleasant odor on the machine after cleaning.

Furthermore, lemon juice contains a natural acid that is effective for cleaning the machine. It kills all the bacteria, breaks calcium deposits, and stains. The only drawback of using lemon juice is that you need to crush many lemons. But you can make your work easier by using a juicer machine.

Step by step guide on how to clean a coffee maker with lemon juice

Prepare cleaning agent

Here, you to prepare the solution for cleaning the coffee maker first. Prepare lemon juice and add water. The solution should be in equal proportions. The amount of solution to be used will depend on the size of a coffee maker.

Clean the removable parts of the machine

Before starting your cleaning process, ensure that you clean the removable parts of the coffee machine first. You should clean all the removable parts, like nozzle and filter.

Empty your coffee maker

If the machine still has anything inside, ensure you empty it. If there is water, make sure you pour it out first. Then, fill the machine with the lemon and water solution you had prepared. After that, press the brew button. Ensure that you brew about one carafe and don’t use coffee.

Leave the coffee maker for one hour

This will allow the lemon solution to dissolve the scale and remove accumulated impurities. If you do not have an hour, you can wait for only 30 minutes.

Repeat the cooking cycle again

After an hour, turn on the coffee machine again. Allow the remaining cleaning solution to pass through the appliance completely. In the tank for ready-made coffee, you can find brown and white crumbs in the solution. This is normal and indicates that the cleaning solution is doing its job successfully.

Drain the lemon solution from the coffee jug

When the coffee maker finishes the brewing cycle, drain the used lemon solution into the sink.

Rinse the water tank and coffee machine filter container thoroughly

Use warm soapy water to rinse the coffee machine filter container and water tank. You can rub the container with a sponge or just rinse with soapy water. When you finish rinsing the container, drain the soap solution from it and rinse it with clean water to remove traces of foam.

Pour fresh water into the coffee maker

When everything is rinsed, pour fresh water into the coffee maker. Pour enough water into the coffee machine.

Start the brewing cycle without coffee three times

Press the brewing button to start the brewing cycle using only water. Allow the cycle to complete. Then repeat two more times. Water will need to be drained and refilled before each cycle. Allow the coffee maker to cool for 3-5 minutes between brewing cycles.

Wash the outside of the coffee maker with soap and water

Drain the appliance from the last cooking cycle. Remove the coffee jug and reusable filter from the coffee maker. Wipe all exterior surfaces of the appliance with a microfiber cloth soaked with a small amount of liquid soap. Then wipe everything with a clean cloth moistened only with water.

Be sure to wipe off any coffee stains that may have appeared on the appliance over time.

Assemble the coffee maker

Make sure that there is no residual dirt or scale left anywhere. When done cleaning the appliance, replace the coffee jug and insert the filter into the coffee maker. Now you can safely make yourself a cup of fresh coffee.

Why is it not advisable to clean the coffee machine with vinegar?

Vinegar
Image from Eak K. on Pixabay

Vinegar can damage the inside of a coffee maker, rubber pads. It is still the most popular cleaning product at home, as it has a wide range of uses. Many people use it for general cleaning and disinfection, for example for washing windows, dishes, floors and much more.

Household appliances with a water heating element (such as a kettle or a coffee maker) must be cleaned regularly. Some people believe that vinegar cleans limescale, but it damages the coffee machine’s hydraulic system. In addition, it leaves its smell and taste in the machine.

What tools can be used to clean the coffee machine? Why can’t you use vinegar?

Vinegar consists mainly of acetic acid and water. There is a misconception that vinegar is great for cleaning the coffee machine and descaling. However, coffee machine manufacturers strongly recommend that you purchase only specialized descalers and never descale with vinegar or vinegar-based products. The following are reasons to avoid using such products:

1. Ineffective result. Vinegar contains acetic acid, while citric and lactic acids are included in specialized descaling agents. Vinegar dissolves limescale, but, unlike professional descaling agents, it does not effectively clean the coffee machine and does not completely remove oily deposits.

2. Vinegar has a pungent odor, which is not easy to get rid of. Mixing with coffee oils, it gives the drink an unpleasant taste. Receptors of the tongue perceive 10 thousand taste shades, but some of them, such as vinegar, have a stronger effect on the receptors and overlap other taste sensations.

3. Slow process. During the tests, it was revealed that the process of descaling with vinegar takes 3.5 times longer than a professional descaler.

In addition, other descaling agents are not recommended. This primarily concerns means based on inorganic acids, for example, sulfuric, hydrochloric, and sulfamic. Such products can damage the coffee machine nozzle system. The exception is drip-type coffee machines that do not use a pump. They are equipped with tubes with thicker walls, so white vinegar can be used to clean them.

It is likely that cleaning the coffee maker with vinegar or the same citric acid will lead to the rapid rusting of metal elements and a quick failure of the equipment. In the best case, it can be repaired, in the worst – you will have to purchase a new one. It is important to remember that careful handling and proper care are the keys to the long-term operation of household appliances.

What to remember

  • Vinegar, citric acid, and other products containing aggressive substances (even of natural origin) are unacceptable for cleaning fragile equipment.
  • Do not use aggressive chemicals for cleaning. In extreme cases, the use of soft household substances are allowed: for example, gel for dishes.
  • When cleaning, use a soft sponge or cloth that will not scratch the walls of the device.
  • After flushing, it is important to dry the coffee machine thoroughly so that water does not get into the electronic control module.

In order to protect equipment from imminent breakdowns, and yourself from expensive repairs, it is best to contact experienced craftsmen. Professional descaling of the coffee machine takes just a few hours and is completely inexpensive so that you can order it as many times as the owner needs. Specialists will do all the work in the best possible way, after which they will return the cleaned equipment to the customer.

What and when should I use to remove the coffee machine scale?

Limescale affects both the taste of coffee and the performance of the coffee maker. Regular descaling is essential to ensure the long life of your espresso machine. The frequency of decalcification depends on the hardness of the water, and the amount of water passed through the machine system.

Most manufacturers recommend descaling every 2-3 months. Automatic coffee machines usually signal when decalcification is necessary since they are programmed to alert the user after a certain number of liters of water passed through it.

In hand-held coffee machines, you do not have an indicator. Therefore, cleaning must be carried out at intervals every 2-3 months.

To sum up, it is paramount not to clean your coffee maker machine without vinegar. There are many reasons why this is not advisable, as discussed above. After going through the article, you will know how to clean a coffee maker without vinegar.

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