two cups of coffee from a coffee maker

How long do coffee makers last?

There are two types of people in this world – those who must start their day with coffee and those who are nuts. Joking aside, when you’re a coffee-lover, you can’t fathom getting going into your day without a perfect cup of coffee.

Coffee also has some astounding health benefits to go with it when you don’t dump in tons of cream and sugar. Organic varieties are healthiest and allow you the best penetration of antioxidants. So coffee is good for you and it puts pep in your step.

When you buy a coffee maker, you can’t expect it to last forever. It will eventually need to be replaced. However, there’s much you can do to prolong the life of your coffee maker. If you make coffee daily, you’re putting wear and tear on your appliance. While necessary to get that cup, you should be prepared to buy new coffee makers throughout your life to fuel your mornings or round out your dinner parties.

If you’re wondering how long coffee makers last, it really depends on a variety of things like how often you use it, how you care for it, what you put into it, and so on which, if you keep reading, you’ll fully discover. Why not brew yourself a cup of coffee now to enjoy as you read through how to make your coffee maker last?

How Long Do Coffee Makers Last?

The length of time your coffee maker will last depends on quite a number of things. It all boils down to, pardon the pun, how they’re being used as well as the quality of the coffee maker you choose. When buying a coffee maker, or any appliance for your home for that matter, you should be choosing something that has value and quality. If you simply buy the cheapest coffee maker you can find, you might be disappointed in a short while.

But how long do coffee makers last? Generally, a quality coffee maker will serve you well for 5 years on average. If you buy a cheap one, it’s not going to last as long. Conversely, if you take very good care of a quality coffee maker, you may find it lives to brew your coffee for even longer than that.

If you take your coffee seriously, you should expect to invest in a quality machine that is built to last and stand up to your daily coffee brewing demands. The initial investment might be higher than you’d like but do keep in mind that buying cheap products always results in replacing them before you would like and at the end that costs you more. If you have to keep buying a new coffee maker every year or so, you’ll be wasting time and money. The cheap ones always seem to break when you desperately need coffee, leaving you to scrounge around for that random instant coffee you bought for emergencies.

Another point to make here is that if you’re using water from the tap and you have hard water, your coffee pot won’t last as long as it would if you used soft water. True that you can use filtered or bottled water, many people pour it right from the tap into the pot. If you’re not sure which type of water you have, you should find out. A simple filter on your faucet can help solve the problem and keep your new coffee maker thriving.

There are many other factors to consider when it comes to how long your coffee maker will last. If you keep reading, you’ll know more about that and what you can expect from your coffee maker.

Factors That Dictate How Long Your Coffee Maker is Going to Last

When you bought your last coffee maker, were you thinking about how long it would last? That’s OK, most people don’t. It seems people think about the design and color (does it go with the style of your kitchen?), the brand, or price and forget about everything else because COFFEE! But if you’re getting ready to replace your current model for a new one, you should look at the following features to make the best purchase.

– The price of your coffee maker

As mentioned earlier, if you buy a cheap coffee maker, you really will get what you pay for. That advice is almost as old as time itself and applies to just about everything under the sun that you can buy. That’s not to say that you need to spend a fortune on your new coffee maker, but if it’s dirt-cheap, it’s likely not going to last.

Aside from that, cheap coffee makers could be faulty. You want to invest in quality because you want to have your coffee each day without fail. High-quality parts and proper engineering cost money. There are many coffee makers that are high-quality that fall into a reasonable price category, but if you choose a cheap model just because it’s cheap, you’re going to kick yourself later on.

While every coffee maker will have some sort of warranty, most of the time those cheap models will break after that period, forcing you to go out and buy a new one. Instead, buy quality first off. Don’t let price be the leading factor in your decision.

– Find out about the warranty and terms

Speaking of warranties, you should find out what the manufacturer provides and the terms of it before you buy your new coffee maker. Any quality coffee maker manufacturer will give you a solid warranty or some sort of guarantee. In most cases, if it breaks due to a defect or during the coverage time, they’ll usually repair it or replace it for free. One big clue that you’re buying into quality is how good the warranty is. Companies lose out when they have to constantly repair or replace shoddy work so one that has a generous warranty means you’re likely making a solid choice.

– How often you use it

The frequency with which you use your coffee machine is also a big factor in how long it’s going to survive. For those that must have coffee every day, your coffee maker isn’t going to last forever. But if you only keep one in your kitchen to brew up gourmet stuff after hosting dinner parties here and there, yours will likely last a long time.

– The quality of the coffee maker itself

You certainly don’t need to buy the absolute most expensive coffee machine out there (unless you want to, of course), but quality ones will not be what you see for $10. Quality products in the coffee sector do exist for reasonable prices though. It’s one thing to compare prices of the same coffee maker because that’s apples to apples. But if you’re comparing the low-end model to a high-end one, it’s apples to oranges. You don’t have to spend more than your budget allows, but don’t go cheap because you want to save money. Price should be kept in mind but quality should override your decision. If you save money now by buying cheap, you’ll come to regret it in a year or so when your coffee maker stops brewing forever and you have to replace it. You’ll spend much less when you go with quality.

– How you maintain it

If you want to ensure your coffee maker makes it through the years, you should always clean it. When you neglect to do this, your coffee can taste bitter or burnt. Use a mild, soapy detergent and warm water to clean out the carafe. And when the heating plate is cool, wipe it off with a soft, clean rag.  

For the inner parts, you should take the time to clean it out as well. The oil that comes from your coffee beans builds up inside your coffee maker. This is why when you first start using it, your coffee tastes amazing but after a while, it can taste acidic. To clean all those parts inside, fill your carafe all the way up with water and allow it to brew without any coffee.

Once that round has been completed, do it again, this time adding either vinegar or lemon juice to the water. This should help get out any stuck-on gunk. You may also want to do a third round to ensure that your next pot of coffee won’t taste like vinegar or lemons.

– Water type and filters

Your coffee maker may come with a filter or may require you to use a paper one. You should always maintain the filter for your coffee maker. Disposable ones should always be thrown away and the reusable ones should always be cleaned.

But aside from that, the water you use can cause problems down the road. If you filter your water, you keep it from depositing minerals into the tubing and pumps of your coffee machine. Hard water will always have more minerals that will gum up the works. By filtering your water, you keep those clogs from happening in the tubing. If that’s not possible, you can use tablets that dissolve in warm water. These will reduce the minerals in the tubing and help clear the way.

How do you know if your tubes are getting clogged? Check to see how long it takes your coffee machine to brew. If it takes longer than before, it’s time to get those inner tubes cleaned fast to prolong the life of your machine.

Types of Water for Making Coffee

And as we just mentioned, water can have a great deal to do with how well your coffee maker performs, not to mention how delicious your coffee tastes. After all, great coffee must come from great water and quality coffee beans.

– Bottled water

When you brew your coffee, do you pour in bottled water? If so, you’re using the best quality that can bring you a wonderful cup of coffee. Even in not-so-fancy machines, your coffee will taste very pure and divine, something you’ll treasure with every sip.

– Tap water

For many people, they turn to the tap to fill up the coffee pot. In areas where water is treated well, this isn’t an issue. But if you lived in a place like Flint, Michigan where the water quality has sadly been in great dismay for years, using tap water, even though it would be boiled, would be a horrible idea.

Even if you live in a place with quality tap water, you should ask yourself if you know what’s coming out of your faucet with your water.

– Filtered water

A great option if you’d rather use the tap is to add a filter onto your faucet. This will eliminate any unwanted items in your water for a purer experience. Additionally, as we discussed above, it can also help prolong the life of your coffee maker if you have hard water because it will keep those mineral deposits from clogging up the inner parts.

Do You Take Proper Care of Your Coffee Maker?

When you buy your new coffee maker, you will get a manual telling you how it works, more about the warranty, and how to maintain your machine. You shouldn’t just tuck it away and ignore it. Manuals are never the most scintillating reading experience but nevertheless, you should take a look at what the manufacturer suggests for cleaning it.

If that doesn’t prompt you to take action, do know that when you don’t clean your coffee maker often, it gets germs and limescale buildup too. And particles from that end up in your coffee.

Another factor to keep in mind is how you treat the machine itself. Keep it on a steady part of your counter so it doesn’t fall off. The outer part might seem durable but if it takes enough beatings, it could dislodge and inner part. Should you notice something is wrong with your machine, you should contact the manufacturer. If it’s still under warranty, they will take care of it according to what is offered in the warranty. If not though, you should take it to a specialty repair place or consider sending it in if there’s nothing of the sort near your location.

Don’t ever try to fix it yourself. You can troubleshoot by putting water through it but never try to take it apart yourself or you could create a fire hazard for the future.

How to Know When You Need to Replace Your Coffee Maker

Not sure if it’s the end of the road for your coffee maker or not? Here’s what to look for to know that you need to buy a new coffee machine now.

– It doesn’t heat the water properly

According to the Specialty Coffee Association of America (SCAA), the ideal water temperature for coffee should fall between 195 and 205F. If you brew your coffee and your machine doesn’t seem to serve it up as hot anymore, use a meat thermometer to test the waters, unless of course the coffee right out of the pot is lukewarm.

When that heating element fades out, your coffee won’t taste right. It will be weak or sour in flavor. You can replace the heating element, but if it’s an older model, you’re better off buying a new coffee maker. 

– You can’t find pods for it anymore

Many people are up in arms about the type of coffee machines that use pods because of environmental issues. But another thing to consider when choosing one is that it might become obsolete before long. If you have a coffee maker that uses pods and no one is making the type of pods you need for your machine, that’s a huge indicator that your coffee maker is out of date.

– It just doesn’t work

There is truly nothing worse than being bleary-eyed and trudging into the kitchen, going through the motions of getting that coffee going only to discover your coffee machine doesn’t work anymore. Unless you find it’s out of warranty.

If it’s been years since you bought it and the warranty period has come and gone, it’s going to be much more efficient and financially smarter to just go out and buy a new one. There are many things that can be wrong with it from a broken pump or some other broken piece inside the machine. It may wind up costing more to have it fixed than to simply replace it.

– You need an upgrade

Perhaps you bought a decent model coffee maker a few years ago, something simple that gets the job done. And there might be nothing wrong with it. But your tastes may have shifted where you want something a bit more advanced to make the specialty coffees you love so dearly. In this case, it might be a good idea to go buy the upgraded version.

You can have fancier coffee to enjoy at home, definitely a worthy investment that will save you down the road from stopping in that café every day for a cup that costs at least $5. If your current coffee machine is still in working order, consider keeping it as a backup in case you have extra guests visiting during the holidays or are hosting a party. You can also sell it or give it away.

– You’ve outgrown it

For some people, the problem isn’t that there’s anything wrong with the machine or how it brews. It might just come down to the size. Perhaps you’ve had this coffee machine for a few years from when you were single and met the love of your life or have moved in with roommates and need more coffee for everyone. Single-serve coffee makers are wonderful for those that live alone or solo coffee drinkers in a family, but if your living situation has changed to include more coffee lovers under one roof, buying a new coffee machine is the best way to share the love together.


For those that love coffee, having a working coffee machine is imperative. Your coffee machine isn’t designed to last forever, but you can do a few things to help maintain it and keep it running well for years to come. When it comes time to buy a new coffee maker though, you should always choose a quality product that is built to last, brew after brew.

You may even find that life situations impact when you buy a new coffee maker, like getting married or having a shift in tastes for coffee. You don’t need to wait until your current unit breaks to replace it, but if yours is older, you really should consider a new one now or else you’ll wind up with an empty coffee mug!


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