Repair Your Clogged Coffee Maker

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About: I like building things. I like to experiment with alternative methods of heating and cooling houses.

Intro: Repair Your Clogged Coffee Maker

Don't throw away your coffee maker just because it only makes steam and has stopped gurgling water up into the brew basket.  I have repaired a couple coffee makers by forcefully spraying water into the "fill area".(Unplug first of course).   This clears the pipes going down into the heating element area. This method didn't work on my expensive MR-COFFEE machine.  So i was forced to remove the cover and find what was clogging it up. This is not very hard to do and you don't need many tools.

OTHER BRANDS are built similarly to the Mr. Coffee.  If you are trying to fix some other brand or model all you need to do is find out what is clogging the hose --- as I describe here --- and your repair should be similarly easy.

Step 1: Preparation to Fix Coffee Pot

SAFETY first, so unplug the coffee pot and LET IT COOL DOWN (if you had it on)!  This will help you avoid burning yourself on the hot-plate. Next....dump out all the water left in the water-resivoir into your sink. Try to be rather thorough to get ALL the water out because it will be necessary to turn the machine upside down to remove the bottom..... and you don't want puddles of water dropping into the display-board-section. 

Step 2: Tools You Will Need:

You don't need many tools but one of them is somewhat difficult to find... the SECURITY torx bit. I bought my set of SECURITY-torx-TIPS at harbor freight tools for only a few dollars.  The security torx is just a standard torx screwdriver bit with a HOLE in the middle and a little pin.  You will have difficulty removing 2 of the 6 screws on the bottom because they are "security" type torx.  The other 4 screws
are standard phillips.  Another way to get the 2 security torx screws out that might work is to use a SOLDERING IRON.  Just heat up the torx screw untill the plastic melts then pull the case apart.  Of course, you will need to have all the other screws out first! 

Step 3: Down-spout Removal & Fix

The downspout hose is easy to remove. Just pull on it!  The other hose is the UP-spout. 

Step 4: Something Looks Funny Here!

Other coffee pots just have a hose... but the Mr-coffee has a VALVE inside the hose. It is a valve that controls the water flow... but this valve is very small and clogs easily.  Mine had a small piece of coffee residue sticking to it that kept the valve clogged.   Just remove the gunk... and that fixes the clog!  To remove the valve... just squeeze the hose and it pushes right out.  When installing the valve, be sure to put it back RIGHT SIDE UP.  The next step shows a close up of the valve so you can see what to look for.

Step 5: VALVE Cleaning and Replacing:

Notice the little ball inside the valve.  It sits on top of a few little pegs that hold it up so water can flow around it.  This is right side up.  If you turn it around the other way, then no water will flow.  If you install it backwards, just re-do the whole procedure and turn it around.

Step 6: Finish Up the Repair.

Re-attach the downspout and put the bottom back on. When I finished my "simple" repair, the coffee pot would not turn on properly!  It seems I got some water into the display-board area.  So i quickly unplugged the appliance.  No harm was done because I dried the upper-board out, using my wifes hair-dryer. DON'T OVERHEAT it...  I just mildly heated the front and sides of the coffee pot for about an hour.  This evaporated the moisture inside the front control panel.  Alternatively, if you have this difficulty you could also just set the coffee pot aside and let it sit for a few days for the moisture to evaporate.   If you suspect any water got into the upper display/control circuits, then let the coffee pot sit to dry out for a couple days before plugging it back into the electrical outlet.

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    47 Discussions

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    Jan Krebs

    1 year ago

    Thank you so much!!

    I was preparing to buy a new coffee maker to replace my Oster (after cleaning it with vinegar three times in a row) when I found your advice. It was a bean that fell into the water reservoir and from there to the outbound tube. Water-hosing the machine did the trick. I will never again pour the ground coffee directly from the grinder to the filter INSIDE the machine.

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    swanderJan Krebs

    Reply 6 months ago

    many coffee makers have provisions for charcoal filters placed at the base of the water tank, in the little hole at the bottom. They act as filters for particles/beans too as well as removing 85% of the chlorine in US tap water. They look like little square or barrel shaped tea bags. and are about $1 a piece in 6 packs.

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    EternalW

    2 years ago

    Working w/ Capresso CoffeeTeam G6, model 464. Burr grinder works fine, coffee moves thru channel, but then there's a click & no water moves anywhere to do anything, no water sounds, nothing...just that click. In dealing w/ other appliances, sounds like it's the circuit board. A clogged up or downspout would make some kind of noise, wouldn't it? Tried it on Grind/Brew & Brew alone & both exhibited same response. These Capresso machines are pricey, as well as difficult as all get out to get into. Sadly, this is our second in about 4 years, but it makes awesome coffee w/out going totally coffee snob & spending several hundred bucks.

    3 replies
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    EternalWEternalW

    Reply 2 years ago

    After a couple of hours of tear-down & troubleshooting, found both hoses unclogged. Looks like Jura/Capresso will repair, turn-key including shipping & handling, for $75. Replacement is $150. For a $200 coffee maker, I'll do the $75 repair. Customer support rep said they'd probably just put a new body on the machine & ship it back...since they probably can't repair it. Since nothing was moving, no noises, nothing after the click, I'm still thinking circuit board & they don't sell internal parts. Nice.

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    swanderEternalW

    Reply 6 months ago

    capresso 464/465 are same model but 465 has no heat (sort of) and only uses $60 thermal pot to keep coffee hot. If it just clicks, I bet the heating unit is open or the 156F/30C thermo limiter is bad. see if there is continuity between the 2 ends of the heating unit found under the bottom plate (5 screws and pry opposite the 2 tabs) and also on the 2 resistors in series. The way these work is the water is drawn into the silicon tube and passes a one way check valve and the C shaped heating element that also heats the hot plate. when the water reaches its own level past the check valve in the up tube, it stops and starts to heat up.. Once it expands/boils (1000W heater on these bad boys) it expands back against the check valve which closes and the water is boiled out the up tube into the coffee grounds filter. The process keeps repeating itself until there is no more water. The heater then goes very hot with no "coolant" and trips a thermo switch shutting off the cycle. The 156F/30C thermo switch is located right on the heating element and I bet it is serviceable as many use the same principle. It looks to be bonded or brazed on but it may just be pressed in there. You can also sub in a glass pot onto a 465 model by removing the heat insulator plate that is under the heating coil, its just a standoff so the heater does not contact the base of the pot! The 464 may also have a 2 hour timer on the heater element via the PCB which may not be on the 465 PCB (or more likely not soldered in) that keeps the hot plate going at a reduced rate (maybe through the 2 series resistors? (warm1 and warm2 on PCB?) I found that with the hot plate insulator plate removed, the coffee stays hot much longer in the glass carafe as it is heated as it brews, not only from the percolation.

    capressa.jpg
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    jasonhavensEternalW

    Reply 1 year ago

    Thanks for your posts. We have a different Capresso model, but the same issue. I've reached out to the Jura customer service and hope that they provide a similar response.

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    MukhtarM1

    Question 6 months ago on Introduction

    i have (italy|) MZ segofedo coffee machine The water coming to the bottom tank not to the nozzle tape after i changed the o ring

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    Divine Friend

    8 months ago

    I have a Mr. Coffee series SJ and it was clogged so I followed these directions and it brews like new, seems there was some paper towel pieces in the flow stop. Thanks bigly.

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    bedingbedang

    9 months ago

    Thank you! Mine is a Hamilton Beach 40715 espresso maker. The pump wouldn't push the water. The problem was the little ball got stuck in the tube that goes inside the pump to prevent water going back into the reservoir.

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    Djobryan

    10 months ago

    Hi guys!!! I have a Mr. Coffee maker/Cafetera TJX series. My issue is I put water and coffee grounds in the machine, make sure everything is correctly placed and turn the brew on. It immediately beeps like it's done brewing the coffee, but no noise or movement inside whatsoever. Like it's not even registering there's water in it. The hot plate isn't getting warm either...???... Not to mention I just ran it through a cleaning cycle literally a day ago... Should I try the steps mentioned here or do you think it's something else or just shot?? Thank You All ❤️

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    WendellB8

    1 year ago

    thanks for the help; I could'nt done it without this service; a flathead with firm pressure worked fine too!

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    pykler

    1 year ago

    Sunbeam 12 cup programable coffee maker, was clogged with a coffee bean! Thx this worked like a charm.

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    CarolynD39

    2 years ago

    My Mr Coffee maker model ftx41cp stopped brewing. I tried the the cleaner but of course the cleaner did not work. what should i do now

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    DragonJedi

    2 years ago

    Unclogging the tubes going into the heating coil on the bottom worked on my different coffee maker as well. Thanks!

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    toolhardy

    2 years ago

    Thanks to all for taking time to post your suggestions over the years. My Hamilton Beach Model 49980 was just sputtering and making noise but not producing any coffee in the pot this morning. Before digging into the plastic case with tools I ran about 10 oz of straight White Vinegar then used an application of a decalcifier named "Dip It" through the tank. Whatever was blocking the flow of water cleared and I now have a free flowing coffee maker. Lesson learned: Use decalcifier monthly as suggested on the bottle to avoid blockage.

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    DickieT

    2 years ago

    Thanks for the pics! Because of you I was able to figure out our problem & signed up to this site as another person below had just to thank you. We have a Mr.Coffee latte maker & a very small removable filter(?) the size & shape of a hollow pencil eraser with teeny holes on the end covered the valve ball area of the water intake hose. It was clogged, I think, & after soaking & cleaning it, it wouldn't stay put in its original spot without clogging. So I just removed it and enjoyed the coffee-making properties of the machine again, all without having to take the machine apart!!!! Super careful now to take the basket out of the machine to fill it with a paper filter & coffee in case those tiny holes were there for the reason I think they were...

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    HazelO3

    2 years ago

    This is great advice. I didn't know that spraying water into the "fill area" could actually fix a broken coffee machine. I like how you went through the detailed steps to find and fix the problem in more expensive coffee makers. What maintenance would you suggest so that the coffee maker doesn't clog up? Thanks.

    http://www.coffeetech.net.au

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    JohnG40

    2 years ago

    Our coffee maker keeps quitting at 1 or 2 cups. I have to turn off grinder and start again each time to get a jull pot.. Trouble with the timer ? homebrewer7@gmail.com

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    TheodoreF1

    3 years ago

    Thanks! After removing the water tube, and giving it a good few shakes - we heard the valve shake - and knew that there were no further obstructions. Gave the water tank a good cleaning - and removed coffee debris from around the top part of the coffee filter holder. Used a cotton tip swab to release hard to remove debris. Recommend that if you swab, like I did, place plenty of paper towels in the water tank - to PREVENT any debris from being swept into the water tank. And of course, do this with the plug disconnected, and remove the paper towels when done cleaning! Word of caution to those that follow this instructable - there is/are capacitor(s) on the power board, at the base of my coffee maker - capacitors can retain enough of an electric charge to hurt or kill you. It doesn't take much to stop a beating heart or cause respiratory paralysis. Google it.

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    KristenF1

    3 years ago on Step 3

    Thanks for this! It was easy to follow and results turned out great. The valve wasn't so much clogged itself, there was a coffee bean in the way. Must be more careful when grinding the beans in the AM. So glad we didn't need to buy a new coffeemaker! One note, I was able to remove the security torx screws using a very small flat head screwdriver -- an idea I got on another instructable on this site. Thanks again!