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Keurig Troubleshooting: The 10 Most Common Mistakes

Keurig Troubleshooting

Keurig Troubleshooting

Keurig Troubleshooting: Keurig machines are renowned for consistently producing coffee day after day. However, this doesn’t mean that these coffee makers are without their issues. Whether it’s due to wear and tear or manufacturing quirks, all kitchen appliances have their own set of problems.

Here are some solutions for addressing common Keurig issues. It’s important to note that while Keurig machines are designed for convenience, understanding how your machine works can be beneficial, especially when troubleshooting any issues that may arise. Regular maintenance and cleaning are also essential to ensure the optimal performance of your Keurig machine.

How A Keurig Coffee Maker Works

Understanding how your Keurig coffee maker works can be beneficial, even though the whole point of having a Keurig is its simplicity in making coffee. This knowledge will come in handy when troubleshooting any issues you may encounter with your machine.

While there are various models in the Keurig original and Keurig 2.0 ranges, the core mechanisms remain the same. The Keurig brewing process consists of two essential parts: the machine itself and the unique K-Cups produced by the brand.

To begin the brewing process, the K-Cup is inserted into the chamber. It is punctured at the top by an upper needle, allowing hot water to enter. Simultaneously, it is punctured at the bottom to allow the brewed coffee to flow into your cup. When you press the brew button, water from the cold-water reservoir is pumped into the heating chamber.

Once the water reaches the optimal temperature, it is pumped to the brewer, passing through the coffee grounds within the K-Cup. Despite being a capsule coffee maker, the Keurig utilizes an extraction method similar to drip coffee. This differs from Nespresso coffee makers, which employ pressure extraction similar to that of an espresso machine.

Common Keurig Troubleshooting Issues

Below, we’re listing 11 common problems you may encounter with your machine.

1. Keurig Won’t Switch On
– Ensure the power cord is properly plugged into the socket.
– Check the functionality of the power socket by testing other appliances.
– Test the Keurig machine in a different outlet.
– If the above steps don’t work, try holding down the power button for 10 seconds or unplugging the machine and removing the water reservoir. Let it sit unplugged for one hour before reassembling and switching it on. If the issue persists, contact Keurig customer care.

2. Keurig Is Not Heating Water
– If the coffee maker dispenses water properly but it comes out cold, try switching the machine off and on again to reset the heating mechanism.
– Clean the pipes to ensure proper water flow. If it’s an issue with the water pump, try holding the brew button for five seconds or consider replacing the water pump.

3. Keurig Is Stuck In Preheating Mode
– If the preheating process takes longer than usual, try switching off and unplugging the machine to restart the preheating process. Alternatively, some users have found that filling the reservoir with hot water can force the machine into brew mode, although this is not recommended by Keurig.

4. Keurig Is Not Dispensing Water Properly
– If the machine doesn’t dispense the expected amount of water, it may be due to clogged water lines. Cleaning the machine and running a water-only brew cycle can help unclog the water lines and resolve the issue.

5. Coffee Contains Grounds
– Grounds in your coffee indicate that your machine needs cleaning, particularly the exit needle. Over time, grounds from K-Cups can accumulate in the needle, which can then find their way into your cup. Cleaning the needle with the Keurig tool or a paper clip and running a water-only brew cycle can help resolve this issue.
– If you encounter grounds in your coffee when using a reusable K-Cup, check that the capsule is closed correctly, not overfilled, and that you are using the recommended grind size.

6. Keurig Is Leaking From The Bottom
– If your machine is leaking from the bottom, it could be due to a leak in the cold-water reservoir. Check if water has pooled underneath the reservoir and inspect the small rubber band known as an O-ring. If the O-ring is broken or misaligned, it can cause leaks. You can replace the O-ring, but make sure to get the correct size. If the reservoir is cracked, you’ll need to order a replacement tank.

7. Keurig Is Leaking When Brewing
– Leaking during the preheating or brewing cycle can be caused by overfilling the water reservoir or a clogged machine. Cleaning the machine thoroughly can help resolve this issue.
– Another potential cause is a loose or broken upper gasket, which creates a seal between the K-Cup and the water hose. Check if the gasket is correctly aligned and replace it if broken or missing. If these solutions don’t work, there may be a broken valve or hose inside the machine that requires contacting customer care.

8. Keurig Switches Off Mid-Brew
– The machine may switch off mid-brew if the reservoir is not seated properly, causing a disruption in the connection between the magnetic contacts. Ensure the reservoir is correctly in place and check the auto shut-off feature settings to ensure they are appropriate or turned off.

9. “Add More Water” Error Message
– If you have sufficient water in the reservoir but receive this error message, there may be an issue with the machine not detecting the water level correctly. Try filling the reservoir to the maximum level and ensure it is seated correctly.

10. Coffee Tastes Bad
If the taste of your Keurig coffee has changed, it may indicate the need for a thorough cleaning. Limescale build-up or residue from coffee grounds can affect the taste. Follow the descaling and cleaning instructions provided by Keurig.

– If you recently cleaned your machine, residue from the descaling solution or vinegar may linger. Empty the water reservoir and run a few cycles with fresh hot water to remove any remaining residue. Replace any filters that may have absorbed the cleaning solution.- If you’re dissatisfied with the general quality of coffee, consider using filtered or bottled water, adding a water filter to the machine, using a reusable K-Cup for brewing with fresh grounds, choosing a smaller cup size for stronger coffee, or removing your cup early to avoid watery drips.

How To Clean A Keurig


Regular descaling is crucial due to the buildup of calcium carbonate deposits, known as limescale, inside the machine. This can affect the taste of your coffee and potentially damage the machine. Descaling should be done every 3-6 months, or more frequently if your water has high mineral content. To descale your machine:- Empty any existing water from the reservoir and add a descaling solution or a 1:1 solution of white vinegar and water.
– Run the machine on a brew cycle without a K-Cup inserted and repeat the process until the reservoir is empty.
– Let the machine sit with the power on for 30 minutes (4 hours after using vinegar) before switching it off, removing, and rinsing the water tank.

Cleaning The Removable Parts

Regularly cleaning the removable parts, such as the water reservoir, lid, K-Cup holder, and drip tray, is essential. Wash these parts in warm soapy water with a soft cloth, ensuring they are thoroughly rinsed and air-dried. Additionally, cleaning the needles and waterline as often as required is important. To clean the exit needle:
– Remove the pod holder from the brewing chamber and the funnel to expose the tube on the underside of the pod holder.
– Use a straightened paper clip to gently remove any debris from the tube, rinse it under running water, and leave it to air dry.

For detailed instructions on descaling and cleaning your Keurig, refer to the manufacturer’s guidelines or the available online resources.

By following these cleaning procedures, you can maintain your Keurig effectively and ensure that your coffee tastes fresh every time.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, it is important to prioritize the cleaning and maintenance of your Keurig machine, even if it is currently functioning well. Regular descaling and cleaning of removable parts can help prevent potential issues and ensure the longevity of your machine. By taking these maintenance steps, you can continue to enjoy a smooth and hassle-free brewing experience with your Keurig.


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