Descaling Nespresso Vertuo Pop: A Complete How-To Guide

Mike C
Written By Mike C

I've been writing about coffee and espresso machines for 3 years. My goal is to provide you with helpful content that you can trust based on my own personal experiences, information from manufacturers, and tips and tricks I've gathered from other coffee and espresso machine users.

I may get commissions for purchases made through links in this post.

Descaling Nespresso Vertuo Pop: A Complete How-To Guide

Nespresso Vertuo Pop vs Vertuo Plus
Nespresso Vertuo Pop Credit Jennifer Payne

The water used to brew your pods contains minerals that build up inside your Nespresso Vertuo Pop machine; descaling removes those minerals. If left untreated, these minerals can have a negative impact on the temperature and taste of your coffee as well as the machine’s water flow. Keep reading to learn more about descaling Nespresso Vertuo Pop machines.

I have included step by step instructions so you will know how to descale Nespresso Vertuo Pop the right way. To begin the process, you will need a descaling solution kit like one of those I review below.

nespresso vertuo pop descaling solution
nespresso descaling solution

How Often To Descale Nespresso Vertuo Pop Machines

In addition to weekly cleaning, Nespresso recommends you descale your Vertuo Pop coffee maker every 3 months or 300 capsules, whichever comes first. If your tap has “hard water,” meaning it contains higher level of minerals, then you should do this more frequently. If you are not sure about the level of minerals in your water, you can get a low-cost water testing kit.

The Vertuo Pop keeps track of usage and will tell you when it is time to descale. The alert will be an orange blinking light that flashes three times. You can still use your machine a few times after this warning light turns on, but it’s best to descale soon as possible. Have you have connected your Vertuo Pop to the your phone using bluetooth? If so, you will also get a descale alert on your phone.

It takes around 20 minutes to finish the process. It cannot be stopped so be sure to start only once you have all of the supplies you need and have enough time to finish it.

Why Descaling Nespresso Vertuo Pop With Vinegar Is A Bad Idea

Nespresso instructions warn that you should NOT use vinegar when you descale your Vertuo Pop. White vinegar contains 5-8% acetic acid. This specific type of acid can wear down metal and cause your unit to leak. As a result, using vinegar can void the warranty on your machine. Instead of damaging your machine by using vinegar, you can use one of these descaling kits to maintain your Nespresso Vertuo Pop. These kits contain safer and effective types of acids.

Nespresso Vertuo Pop Descaling Solutions

Nespresso Descaling Solution, Fits all Models, 2 Packets
  • Official Nespresso Descaling Solution
  • Compatible with all models (Vertuoline and Original line)
  • Includes 2 packets for 2 total uses

This is the official descaling solution kit made by Nespresso and the one that I use personally. Nespresso strongly recommends using only this descaler so I like using it because it makes me feel like I am protecting the investment I made in my machine. The primary cleaning agent in it is lactic acid. This descaling solution will gently eliminate the lime scale that has built up in your machine. Each pack contains 2 kits, so you’ll get two total uses out of it.

Caffenu Nespresso Vertuo Descaling Kit (2 Pack)
  • A powerful and eco-friendly descaler made of plant-based Lactic Acid.
  • Phosphate and chlorine free
  • Includes 2 bottles for 4 total uses

The Eco Descaler for Nespresso Vertuo by Caffenu is a more affordable descaler that also uses lactic acid like the Nespresso solution. It is also phosphate free. Each pack contains two bottles, which is good for a total of four uses. If you descale every 3 months, that is a one year supply.

Impresa Universal Descaler (2 Pack)
  • Best-value descaler compatible with all coffee makers
  • Uses gentle citric and sulfamic acids
  • Made in the USA

The Impresa descaler is a top selling coffee machine descaler. It uses citric and sulfamic acids. Both are gentle on metal and aluminum. A pack has two bottles, enough for four total uses.

How To Descale Nespresso Vertuo Pop

You need a descaling solution. If you would like to see an illustrated step by step for how to descale the Nespresso Vertuo Pop, please click to see pdf pages 21-23 in the user manual.

Prepare The Vertuo Pop

  1. Empty the capsule container. Remove the drip tray and empty it.
  2. Add the solution and clean water to the tank, following the instructions on your solution. If using the Nespresso solution, add one packet to 0.5L or 17 fl oz of water.
  3. Close and lock the machine to turn it on. Allow it to heat up. When the light stops flashing, it has finished heating up.
  4. Open the machine head and empty any used capsule. Close it and leave the lever in unlocked position towards the front.

Start The Descale Cycle

  1. Press and hold the button for at least 7 seconds to enter descaling mode. The button will blink rapidly when it is ready. You then have 45 seconds to start the following steps in the descaling process.
  2. Turn the lever left towards the lock symbol, then unlock by turning right. Hold the button in the unlocked position for at least 7 seconds.
  3. Place a container that is at least 34 fl oz under the coffee outlet.
  4. To start descaling, turn the lever left to lock the machine. Push the button. It will stop when the first phase is done.

Run A Rinse Cycle

  1. Empty and rinse the water tank, drip tray and cup support.
  2. Fill the water tank with fresh water. Push the button to rinse.
  3. When the light stops flashing and becomes steady, the process is done.
  4. Let it sit and dry for at least 10 minutes.
How To Descale Nespresso Vertuo Pop

What To Do If the Vertuo Pop Orange Light Stays On After Descaling?

The descale light on your Vertuo Pop should reset automatically if you followed the instructions all the way through without interruption. You shouldn’t have to do anything. If the Vertuo Pop descale light stays on on, then it is possible you didn’t complete the process correctly. A big mistake people often make is not letting the water tank empty completely during the rinse cycle. Give your machine time to cool down, then try running a descale cycle again, this time using only water and no solution.

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