How Long Does a Keurig Machine Last?
Keurig coffee machines are extremely popular devices because they are quick and easy to operate. They come with a little added expense, but you’re paying for the convenience rather than the machine’s ability. Considering how easy, fast, and effective they are, how long can a Keurig machine last before it fails?
The average lifespan of a Keurig coffee machine is about 3 to 5 years. As with most things, its longevity depends on how well its made, the components that go into it, and how well you maintain it throughout its use.
Keurig machines are often put to work in office environments as well. You can easily slash its lifespan in half with that level of use. It probably doesn’t get maintained as well in an office either. Keurigs come with a warranty and other brands that do the same thing. That’s something worth factoring in as well.
- How Long Does a Keurig Machine Last?
- The Lifespan of a Keurig
- How Do You Increase a Keurig’s Lifespan?
- Cleaning your Keurig
- Cleaning and Descaling the Rest
- How to Keep Your Keurig Machine Clean
- Keurig Warranty Coverage
- All Things Considered…
- Common Mistakes Keurig Owners Make
The Lifespan of a Keurig
Believe it or not, 3 to 5 years is pretty long for just about any machine. A Keurig can last as long as it does because it’s pretty simple. The needle is probably the most faulty part on a Keurig simply because of its small size and the fact that it’s not an interior part and is actively used.
Keurigs last longer than other brands that essentially do the same thing. Most people call these brands “knock-offs, ” which is what they are. You also have the regular cost of replacing the K-cups every time you use the machine.
Most people don’t take the time to perform regular maintenance on their Keurig devices, which is understandable. A Keurig is just one of those machines that you expect to keep on working until the day that it doesn’t. In that way, it’s much like a box fan.
However, if you want the maximum amount of time (5 years, for the most part), regular maintenance is a must—every few days, if not every day. Although a Keurig is typically priced higher than other models, it lasts longer, so you pay less in the long run.
The only comparable coffee maker, in terms of longevity, is a Cuisinart Coffee Maker, lasting between 2 and 5 years. Whether they follow the Keurig design or not, most coffee makers tend to fail long before a Keurig will.
How Do You Increase a Keurig’s Lifespan?
Coffee machines will get pretty gunky and get that way in a hurry. Surprisingly, some people like it that way so it’s no big deal. That’s fine, assuming you like it that way, so long as you understand that it undermines the longevity of the coffee machine.
In this case, we’re dealing with Keurig machines, but since they are making coffee, they get gunked up. When you first pull your Keurig out of the box, it’s as squeaky clean as it’s likely to be again.
If you want to get five full years of coffee goodness out of the thing, you’ll have to keep it looking like it came right out of the box. But you don’t have to do it every day.
Cleaning your Keurig
Just give it a good once over at the end of each week. There are a few good ways to clean it without it becoming too much of a hassle.
- Buy a toothbrush that’s not for brushing your teeth
- Get some pure white vinegar
- Dishwashing liquid (Dial or something similar)
- Microfiber cloth
It’s honestly not that much of a pain. Keurigs are designed in such a way that they’re pretty accessible, and if all you ever cleaned were the removable parts, you would still be doing much better than most people.
Take your Keurig over to the sink and start by disassembling it as far as you can, removing all the pieces designed to be removed. This includes the reservoir, the drip tray cover, and the tray itself.
Remove the holder piece for the K-cup, and be careful not to prick your finger or hands with the sharp needle that pops into the K-cup lids. The holder and the funnel should come free pretty easily.
Fill one side of your sink with soap and hot water, then place all your removable parts. Let them soak for no less than 15 minutes to half an hour. When you come back, go ahead and wash them thoroughly. You can use the toothbrush for this or whatever you typically wash the dishes with.
The toothbrush will allow you to get into difficult spots like the hinge of the reservoir lid. It’s also good for hard-to-clean coffee stains or residues.
Cleaning and Descaling the Rest
As far as the rest of the machine is concerned, you can descale it, but the rest will need to be wiped down thoroughly. You can’t use a bunch of soapy water for this part because the rest of the machine is difficult to rinse off.
Just stick with a cloth dampened with hot water. Use that to clean the outside of the Keurig. You will probably notice that after a week of use, there is a build-up around the K-cup holder. This is residue from coffee grounds, and you’ll discover it’s almost greasy in feel and texture.
Wipe that stuff down thoroughly. Use the cloth to reach any areas, and ensure the dark, greasy residue is up. You can avoid that residue build-up by not splashing any coffee around or allowing it to drip after you’ve removed the cup.
Limescale build-up is what you want to worry about in the places you can’t reach. You have to “descale” your Keurig machine to get rid of it. That’s where the white vinegar comes in.
- Fill up the reservoir with your white vinegar
- Start brewing like you normally would for a cup of coffee in the morning
- Do not put a K-cup in place for this process
- Remove the reservoir
- Clean the reservoir thoroughly to remove all of the vinegar
- Fill up the reservoir with water
- Run it again
- Run it again and continue doing so until that vinegar smell is completely gone
Some will just tell you to run the water once after the vinegar has gone through. However, unless you like your coffee with a tinge of white vinegar, you need to run until the smell of vinegar is gone.
Vinegar smells pretty strong, so you will notice it if it’s still there. It may be that one fresh water run-through is enough to eliminate the smell. Or, it may take several times. Just run the brewing process until the smell is eliminated to be sure.
How to Keep Your Keurig Machine Clean
It’s one thing to clean your Keurig machine periodically. It’s another to keep some good habits going when you’re using it throughout the week.
Use Distilled Water Instead of Tap
Unless you are positive that you have soft water, rather than hard water, coming out of the tap, it’s better to brew your coffee each morning with distilled water. You can pick up a gallon bottle of distilled water at the grocery store.
Hard water leaves deposits behind that are difficult to clean off. Those deposits also require the coffee pot to work harder for longer, which reduces its overall longevity.
Go Through the Descaling Process Once per Month
You don’t have to descale your Keurig once every week. While it’s important to clean your Keurig once per week thoroughly, the descaling process can wait. If you like to descale it once per week, it will certainly not hurt anything. It’s just not necessary to do it that often.
Rinse Once Per Day
While you should thoroughly clean all of the removable parts once per week, rinsing the parts after each use is also a good idea. Rinsing the parts daily will make the cleaning and descaling processes much easier later in the week or month.
You also want to rinse everything thoroughly if you brew something other than coffee, especially if it’s sweet or potentially sticky once it dries up on the surface of the Keurig.
Keurig Warranty Coverage
If something goes wrong with your Keurig, especially soon after you buy it, you may be able to get it replaced for free. Keurig warranty coverage is exactly one year, and it guarantees that the machine is free of all defects and Keurig guarantees the workmanship quality of the product.
However, some things might void the warranty if you’re not careful. Keurig is Keurig Dr. Pepper Inc. If you place any kind of K-cup into the holder that is not a Keurig Dr. Pepper K-cup, your warranty is void and useless if the machine breaks while using it.
Keurig will also rescind the warranty if the problem that damaged the machine was caused by user error. Of course, there’s is very little that Keurig can do to tell whether or not you used an official K-cup or not. So that would be up to your integrity.
A part of user error would be to avoid cleaning your Keurig machine at all. That’s something that Keurig will be able to determine when they receive the machine. As a part of filing your warranty claim, you will have to take your machine to an authorized Keurig retailer or mail it to Keurig Dr. Pepper.
If your Keurig is no longer under warranty and breaks down, buying a new one will probably be more cost-effective than paying for a repair. You can always purchase insurance for your Keurig (through something like AKKO), but it’s pretty rare to do that for a relatively inexpensive machine.
All Things Considered…
Assuming you take good care of your Keurig machine, it should last 3-5 years. Even if you get only three years out of it, that’s two years beyond the warranty, and most coffee machines don’t last that long.
Take good care of your Keurig machine, clean it regularly, and descale it once a month, and you will have a long-lasting Keurig.
Common Mistakes Keurig Owners Make
This great video from TopMyCoffeePlease gives a solid overview of what you should and shouldn’t do with your Keurig coffee maker.
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