Home Remedies for Cleaning Coffee Makers

Clean coffee makers make the best tasting coffee, according to the website Coffee Statistics.

Vinegar

Over time, trace deposits left from the coffee and minerals from the water accumulate in the coffee maker and can change the taste of the coffee. Commercial coffee maker cleaning products are available, but many common home products also are effective in removing unwanted materials from the coffee maker.

White vinegar is probably the most common household product used to clean coffee makers. Mix half vinegar and half water in the water tank of the coffee maker, turn the machine on and allow it to run through the entire coffee-making cycle. Pour out the vinegar mix and run a cycle of clean water before brewing a batch of coffee.

Baking Soda

Mix 1-cup water and 1/4-cup baking soda, and place in the water tank of the coffee maker. Run the coffee maker through its normal cycle. Run three cycles of clear water through the coffee maker to rinse the baking soda mix from the machine.

Bleach

Pour 1 cup of bleach directly into the carafe or "pot" of the coffee maker. Use a rag, along with a spoon or other implement if necessary, to scrub the interior of the coffee carafe. Rinse thoroughly with clear water before using the coffee pot. Do not run bleach through the entire coffee maker. Use only in the glass carafe.

Salt

Mix a 1/2-cup salt with enough crushed ice to fill the carafe or pot. Shake or swirl the pot around to cause the ice and salt to rub against the interior of the carafe. Rinse the carafe with clear water before using the coffee maker. Use the salt only on the carafe rather than the entire coffee maker.

Exterior Cleaning

Clean the exterior of the coffee maker with vinegar or baking soda. Both are effective at cleaning accumulated mineral deposits and brightening the glass. Prepare the mix according to the instructions and wipe the exterior of the coffee maker with a sponge or rag soaked in the mixture. Rinse with clear water. Avoid getting the electrical heating element excessively wet and do not submerge the coffee maker.

About the Author

Keith Allen, a 1979 graduate of Valley City State College, has worked at a variety of jobs including computer operator, medical clinic manager, radio talk show host and potato sorter. For over five years he has worked as a newspaper reporter and historic researcher. His works have appeared in regional newspapers in North Dakota and in "North Dakota Horizons" and "Cowboys and Indians" magazines.