How to Descale Your Keurig Machine

The Keurig can accomplish a remarkable number of tasks on its own. Unfortunately, descaling is not one of them. 

What does descale mean on a Keurig? For starters, every Keurig device will need to be descaled if you want the machine to endure on your countertop. In short, it means to clean the tubes and interior parts of the device that otherwise builds mineral deposits and accumulates oils that affect the flavor of coffee. 

At its worst, a Keurig machine left uncleaned can give way to mold, yeast, and bacteria as a result of wet coffee grounds that cling to areas of the device. How do you descale a Keurig coffee maker is a common question; thankfully, it has a pretty simple solution. Learn more about how to properly maintain your Keurig coffee machine to enjoy delicious brew after delicious brew. 

How to Descale a Keurig

To safely descale your Keurig, there’s only one solution on the market that comes with guarantees, and it’s the Keurig-brand Descaling Solution. The official solution promises to remove tricky mineral build-ups, keep the machine clean for as long as six months after one descaling session, and is odorless—certainly, a perk over some of the homemade options. 

The steps to descale using this Keurig descaling solution:

  • Pour solution into the reservoir. In this case, you’ll need the whole bottle. Note that the Descaling Solution is compatible with all versions of the Keurig. You may also consider rinsing the reservoir and wiping down other areas of the device before going through the cleansing process. 
  • Add water. You’ll want to fill the reservoir. Use filtered water, if you can. 
  • Perform cleansing brew. Run the machine as you normally would, on its largest setting. Make sure a cup is set to catch the water about to come through. 
  • Repeat cleanse. Continue this process to descale your Keurig with vinegar, until the reservoir is emptied. 
  • Pause. Give the solution about 30 minutes to do its job and soak into the components of the machine. 
  • Rinse. To accomplish this, use filtered water to run through another full reservoir, or until it’s clear there’s no residue from the solution. 
  • Brew. Congratulations—you can now brew coffee that’s fresher than it’s ever been. 

Homemade Descaling Solution

Looking to skip the proprietary Keurig solution? There’s a DIY option for that with homemade descaling solution. And you might not even need a trip to the store to make it work. 

Here, some DIY Keurig descale instructions:

  • Wash parts. For the sake of adding some thoroughness to this homemade method, make sure to wash the reservoir, mug stand, and any other removable components with soap and water before embarking on the machine’s descaling. Dust off the rest of the machine with a soft cloth; don’t forget to dust the coffee holder, where coffee debris sometimes finds a home.
  • Add vinegar. Yes, vinegar. Use white distilled vinegar for this process, adding it halfway to the top of the reservoir, filling the rest with fresh water. 
  • Cleanse. Like above, this is a matter of paying attention and having patience. Run the machine through several cycles until the reservoir is emptied. Let it sit, and then repeat the process but with water only—perhaps adding a few extra cycles for the sake of completely taking out any vinegar taste that may linger.
  • Brew. Congratulations, you can brew fresher-than-ever coffee. Just make sure to do this process, with vinegar, approximately every three months. It’ll save your coffee’s flavor, and your wallet some of its hard-earned cash by not needing to replace the machine.

Descaling your Keurig machine regularly will help you to keep it clean and in good working order -- ready to prepare a taste-tempting cup of coffee whenever your coffee cravings call.