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KitchenAid Coffee Maker Cleaning Guide

Knowing how to clean your KitchenAid coffee maker the right way will help you keep it working at its best. Some basic cleaning should be done daily or after every use, while deeper cleaning needs to be done on a less frequent basis. Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about cleaning a KitchenAid coffee maker.

How To Clean Your KitchenAid Coffee Maker Daily

To keep your coffee tasting great, it is important that you clean all of the removable parts after every use of your KitchenAid coffee maker. Always be sure to unplug your coffee maker first before starting any cleaning.

Removable Parts

There are four parts to your KitchenAid coffee machine that you should clean when you are done brewing. You can wash all of them by hand with warm water and soap. If you have a dishwasher, you have the option of putting only two of these parts in there on the top rack to clean them.

KitchenAid Coffee Maker PartHow To Clean
Brew BasketTop Rack Dishwasher or Hand Wash
Gold Tone Permanent FilterTop Rack Dishwasher or Hand Wash
Carafe & Coffee Pot LidHand Wash Only
Water TankHand Wash Only

Coffee Machine Exterior & Under The Lid

When you’ve finished washing the removable parts, you should clean the exterior of your KitchenAid coffee maker and under the lid before putting the parts back.

Start by wiping down the outside of the machine with a damp cloth. Then open up the brew basket lid and use a damp cloth to wipe the showerhead on the underside of the lid. This will help remove any lingering coffee splashes or residue from your last brew so that they don’t end up causing clogs. Place all removable parts back in side the brewer.

It is up to you if you want to leave the brew basket lid open. On the one hand, this can help reduce moisture inside the coffee maker. Less moisture means slower bacteria growth. The flip side is that leaving it open can also allow debris like dust or pet hair to enter your machine. I personally would choose to keep the lid closed.

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How To Deep Clean Your KitchenAid Coffee Maker Every Few Months

The water used to brew coffee causes limescale buildup inside your machine. While not toxic, this can impact the brewer’s water flow, temperature and performance. It can even affect the taste of your drink. Descaling, also known as deliming or decalcifying, is the name of the deep cleaning process that removes these minerals. You need to do this deep cleanse in addition to the basic cleaning above.

How Often To Descale A KitchenAid Coffee Maker?

A good rule of thumb is that a you should descale your KitchenAid coffee maker every 3 months or 100 brew cycles, whichever comes first. This is true if you are using filtered water, bottled water or tap water with a low to normal mineral count. That’s because all of these types of waters contain minerals. The only type of water that does not have minerals is distilled water. However, KitchenAid strongly recommends against using distilled water. Not only does it lack minerals you need for your coffee to taste good, but it can also cause damage to the metals parts inside your machine.

If you use tap water and your tap has “hard water,” meaning it contains higher level of minerals, you should descale more often. Every one or two months would be best. Hard water will cause the limescale to buildup inside your machine even faster. If you are not sure about the level of minerals in your water, get a low-cost water testing kit.

Some KitchenAid coffee maker models may have a clean light that will turn on when it is time to descale. If your machine does not, try to stick to the schedule above. You should also descale ASAP if you start to have any of these issues:

  • brew speed is too slow
  • the volume brewed is less than you expect
  • coffee does not come out
  • coffee starts to taste bad
  • machine makes a rumbling or gurgling noise while brewing
  • there is white residue on parts of the machine

Can You Descale With Vinegar?

If you look in your Kitchenaid user manual, you may see that the descaling instructions use vinegar. If you have some around and you are comfortable with that, go for it. Follow the steps below. Many other coffee maker manufacturers advise against using vinegar. White vinegar contains 5-8% acetic acid and apple cider vinegar has 5-6%. This type of acid can wear down metal and cause leaks. Vinegar is also less effective than other cleaners at removing oils left by used coffee beans. Plus, it may leave a taste or odor which may make your drink unpleasant. That isn’t how I like my coffee to taste…

Instead, I think the best way how to clean a coffee maker without vinegar is with commercial cleaning tablets. In fact, there is one made by the parent company of KitchenAid (Whirlpool) that they also recommend you use with your coffee maker.

Affresh Coffee Maker Cleaning Tablets Recommend for Kitchen Aid
Affresh Coffee Maker Cleaning Tablets Recommend for Kitchen Aid

How To Descale A KitchenAid Coffee Maker With Affresh Tablets

Once you have your tablets, follow these simple steps to deep clean your KitchenAid coffee maker:

  1. Discard any coffee from the brew basket. Remove any water filter if your model has one.
  2. Fill your KitchenAid coffee maker water tank with fresh water. Drop in one cleaning tablet.
  3. Press the CLEAN button. Then press the BREW button. This will start the descale cycle. It will take about 30 minutes to complete.
  4. When the descale cycle is over, the coffee maker will beep 3 times and the CLEAN icon should turn off. It if stays on, repeat steps 2-3 with another tablet.
  5. Empty the water tank and clean it with warm soapy water.
  6. Now you’ll want to rinse your machine. Fill the water tank with fresh water only. Without any coffee in the machine, hit the BREW button.
  7. Repeat the rinse cycle in step 6 one more time.

How To Clean A KitchenAid Coffee Maker With Vinegar

If you want to use vinegar to descale your KitchenAid coffee machine, follow these steps:

  1. Discard any coffee from the brew basket. Remove any water filter if your model has one.
  2. Add six cups of white vinegar and 6 cups of fresh water to the KitchenAid coffee maker water tank.
  3. Press the CLEAN button. Then press the BREW button. This will start the descale cycle. It will take about 30 minutes to complete.
  4. When the descale cycle is over, the coffee maker will beep 3 times and the CLEAN icon should turn off. It if stays on, repeat steps 2-3 with another fresh batch of vinegar and water.
  5. Empty the water tank and clean it with warm soapy water. You want to make sure there it doesn’t have any lingering vinegar smell.
  6. Now you’ll want to rinse your machine with clean water only to get rid of any vinegar inside. Fill the water tank with fresh water only. Without any coffee in the machine, hit the BREW button.
  7. Repeat the rinse cycle two or three times (or more if necessary) until the vinegar odor is gone.

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