How To Clean A Drip Coffee Maker Without Vinegar

Caring for a drip coffee maker involves more than just tidying up its exterior. It’s typical for mineral deposits to gather within the spray forward tube and the water tank. To eliminate this buildup inside your coffee machine, there are numerous descaling options available, ranging from store-bought products to DIY solutions.

One of the most common descalers is vinegar, which is easy and inexpensive to use. It is capable of both cleaning and sanitizing at the same time. Since vinegar has such a high acidity, it’s good at removing minerals. Also, it comes at a very low price and is easy to get. However, it takes a few cycles for all of the calcium and other minerals to be removed from the coffee maker. 

Even if you don’t want to use vinegar in your drip coffee maker anymore, you have many other options at your disposal. In this article, we provide you with a few tips on how to properly clean a drip coffee maker without using vinegar.

Descaling Solution: How To Make It At Home

The descaling products on the market contain chemicals that are acidic and strong enough to remove mineral deposits from a coffee maker. You can make a descaling solution with common household items as well. If you DIY a descaling solution, you will save money, as well as be in control of what goes into your coffee maker. Compared to commercial descalers, natural descalers offer similar results.

Baking Soda

Mineral deposits and stains from coffee makers can be removed using baking soda. This is better at cleaning than descaling. You might have to run this solution a few times for it to get rid of all the scale. Baking soda will make your coffee maker shine like new and won’t leave a scent or taste behind.

To make the solution, add a teaspoon of baking soda to about a liter of warm water and stir.

Lemon Juice

The easiest way to get rid of scale is with lemon juice. Despite being acidic, lemon juice is all-natural, so you won’t have to worry about it ruining your coffee maker. You have to rinse the coffee maker with water to get rid of the lemon taste. 

To make a solution, mix ⅓ lemon juice into ⅔ water.

Citric Acid

The low pH makes citric acid an excellent mineral remover. The smell is pleasant, and it rinses off easily. Due to this, citrus acid is perfect for descaling. Cleaning solutions often smell and taste like chemicals after they have been used. Citric acid leaves no residue behind. Due to its lower acidity than store-bought cleaners and vinegar, you’ll likely need to execute more cycles to achieve the same result.

To make a solution, add a tablespoon of citric acid pellets to a gallon of water.

How To Descale a Drip Coffee Maker Without Vinegar 

It is important to descale your coffee maker so that mineral deposits and hard water deposits can be removed. Perform the cleaning at least once a week, especially if you have hard water. Here are the steps you need to take to descale a drip coffee maker completely:

Step 1: Prepare The Baking Soda And Distilled Water Mixture

Pour distilled water and add baking soda into a coffee maker and fill it up. The solution should be about a teaspoon of baking soda to a liter of distilled water. For example, pour 8 cups of water and 2-3 teaspoons of baking soda into a 12-cup reservoir.

Step 2: Set Up The Brewing Process

Pour the descaling mixture into the water reservoir to start a brewing cycle. The mixture will help remove calcium and mineral deposits from the coffee maker.

Step 3: Dispose of Brewed Cleaner

After the pot of brewed descaling mixture has filled up, make sure you remove all of the descaling solutions.

Step 4: Rinse Again Using Fresh Water

Plugin the coffee maker, then turn it on and pour distilled water into the reservoir. To get rid of any unwanted flavor left by that descaling solution, you’ll have to run a second brew cycle. If the smell has not gone away, repeat this process as many times as necessary.


Using your sense of taste as a guide will allow you to identify when it is time to clean your coffee maker. The only way to guarantee that every cup of coffee you make tastes good is to make sure you clean your drip coffee maker regularly. Maintaining your coffee maker will prevent contaminants like bacteria from building up and ensure it will last a long time.

While you can use many different brands of chemicals, we suggest you try cleaning your coffee maker with the natural methods above. We hope you find our article about cleaning and descaling your drip coffee maker helpful.