I am extremely wary of coffee makers such as the Keurig maker because they can harbor mold, bacteria and algae like crazy. Think about it: the water reservoir is warm, wet and dark – ideal conditions for bacteria and mold to grow. Thankfully there is a solution for your personal coffee maker at home, and I’m going to show you what that is in a second. However, you need to be wary about coffee makers in public places like offices and hotel rooms, where you can’t necessarily be sure it has been cleaned properly. I never use them in hotel rooms. Instead I ask for a tea kettle, and if they can’t accommodate me (which is often the case!), I bring my own mini travel kettle. This way I can make my own tea. The same goes for water dispensers!! I rarely dispense water from one of those big coolers or machines unless I know for a fact that it is cleaned regularly (which they often aren’t).
So, here’s the eco-friendly solution because I really don’t want to have to use bleach.
For a regular sized coffee maker machine, you will need:
- 1.5 cups white vinegar + 1 cup
- 1/5 cups water
- 1 NEW scrubber sponge
- Earth-friendly dish soap
- Locate and remove the water reservoir from your machine*. Stand it in your sink.
- Place the vinegar and water in a measuring cup and microwave for 1.5 minutes.
- Be careful removing it because it will be super hot.
- Pour 3/4 of the water/vinegar into the reservoir. Leave for 3 minutes.
- Re-heat the water/vinegar for 50 seconds. Turn the reservoir upside down and pour the the vinegar/water over the base making sure you hit the opening. Leave for a minute.
- Fill your sink with hot, soapy water, and immerse the reservoir. Scrub it well. Rinse and air dry.
- Heat the remaining 1 cup of vinegar in microwave for 1.5 minutes. Pour it into a sprayer bottle. Spritz the rest of the machine, and leave for a few minutes. Dry with a clean cotton cloth.
- Reassemble your machine, and run a full cycle of fresh water through it before making your next cup of coffee.
- When you are not using your machine regularly. Remove the reservoir, wash and dry it before reassembling.
- Do the thorough vinegar clean at least once a month.
*If your reservoir doesn’t come out of your machine, you can pour the hot vinegar solution into it while it’s still in the machine.