How to Clean a Coffee Maker Without Vinegar
Why do You Need to Clean Your Coffee Maker
If you are anything like me, you count on your trusted coffee maker to give you that fresh cup of Joe to get your morning started just right.
Many of us clean the carafe and may even clean the coffee reservoir, but forgot about the inside of the coffee maker.
Sediment, lime, calcium and mold can build up in your coffee maker, preventing you from having a truly great cup of coffee!
If you have a white coffee maker you may see some of this build up, but it can go completely unnoticed in a black one. The only thing that you may start to notice is a bitter tasting cup of coffee.
A good cleaning can remove this build up and bring your coffee maker back up to its peak performance.
Your coffee maker should be cleaned monthly to be free of sediment and oils to provide you with the best cup of coffee possible.
Harsh Chemicals and Vinegar to Clean Your Coffee Maker
Most recommendations for cleaning your coffee maker are to use vinegar or a solution such as CLR, which will get your coffee maker clean.
The downside to these cleaners are that both solutions have a very strong and unpleasant odor.
I recently just bought a new coffee maker because I used CLR to clean my old one and I could not get rid of that smell! I made several cups of coffee and it tasted horrible! I had to give in and buy a brand new coffee maker.
Now that I have a fresh start I wanted to find a solution to cleaning up the sediment without using vinegar.
Cleaning Your Coffee Maker with Lemon Juice
The citrus smell of lemons is prevalent in many of the cleaners that you can buy in the store. Lemons provide a refreshing and invigorating smell that is welcomed in most homes.
Did you know that you can make your own cleaners with lemons and save yourself money and the exposure to harsh chemicals?
Lemons are acidic and can provide some antibacterial and antiseptic properties for cleaning. That acid is just the thing that is needed for getting rid of the build up in your coffee maker!
Lemon juice is a fresh, convenient and inexpensive cleaner.
You can either use fresh lemon juice or you can easily find lemon juice concentrate at the grocery store.
I prefer buying a large bag at of lemons and always having them handy. I use them for skin care, cleaning and of course eating!
Step by Step Instructions for Cleaning with Lemon Juice
- Make sure your coffee maker is free of any coffee grounds and run your machine through a water only cycle once. Make sure you have an empty filter in place so that it runs properly.
- Mix a solution of 1/2 parts lemon juice and 1/2 parts water.
- Discard the water from the carafe and turn off the coffee maker.
- Pour your solution into the coffee maker (turned off) and allow your solution to sit for approximately 15 to 20 minutes. This will give the lemon juice time to really break up the oils.
- Turn the coffee maker on and allow the solution to run through (again make sure you have an empty filter in).
- If it has been an extremely long time since you have cleaned your coffee maker you may want to repeat the process. Please beware to NOT put the HOT solution back through, this may ruin your coffee maker. Make a fresh solution to pour into the pot or let the original solution cool completely and run it back through.
- When the cleaning is complete run a clean water cycle through the coffee maker one or two more times to get rid of any lemon smell or taste.
- Remove any removable parts (the carafe, coffee reservoir, etc.) and wash them with the same lemon solution to remove any oils that remain. Then re-wash these parts with dish soap and water to remove any lemon taste.
Now you have a beautiful, clean coffee maker and can enjoy your coffee, knowing that it is free of bacteria and foul tasting build up! The best part is that your house won't smell like vinegar until Easter comes ;-)