3 Common Coffee Machine Problems And Solutions

You can fix coffee machine problems by yourself, in most cases. So, instead of calling a technician or sending your machine in for repairs each time, it helps to learn how to fix common problems.

Common coffee machine problems include not turning on, not heating up, slow or no water flow, or leaking water. Any of these problems will prevent you from getting your morning cup of coffee. So, you should learn how to troubleshoot and repair these issues yourself.

There are plenty of different coffee machines on the market, from your basic household coffee pot to sophisticated models with all the bells and whistles. This guide will walk you through common problems they all share and how to fix them.

What To Do If A Coffee Machine Is Not Working?

When your coffee machine isn’t working as it should, it typically boils down to these four common problems:

Coffee Machine Isn’t Turn On

Parts to check: Check the coffee machine’s incoming power supply. Specifically, its power cord, plug, wall socket, and the circuit breaker for that wall socket.

These parts work together to supply the power your coffee machine needs. If there is a problem with one or more parts, your coffee machine won’t turn on.

What happened: The many parts supplying power to your coffee machine can each fail in different ways.

For example, the power cord could have suffered tears, rips, or other types of damage. That damage is enough to stop electricity from flowing through to your coffee machine.

Besides that, the wall socket could be defective, and the circuit breaker might have tripped.

Troubleshooting the wall socket and circuit breaker only takes a few moments. First, check the circuit breaker at your building’s main electrical box. Meanwhile, plug your coffee machine into a different socket in another room and see if it works.

If it does, that means the first wall socket is to blame.

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Solution: You can solve some of these incoming power supply problems yourself. For example, you can buy a replacement power cord and reset a tripped circuit breaker.

However, dealing with a defective wall socket is dangerous if you don’t have the necessary skills. A safer option would be to engage a qualified electrician to diagnose and fix your socket.

Read: How To Clean A Breville Coffee Machine? Step By Step Guide

Coffee Machine Isn’t Heating Up

Parts to check: When your coffee machine refuses to heat up, you’ll want to troubleshoot the heating element. But never forget that the heating element has supporting components, namely the thermostat and thermal fuse.

The heating element produces heat, and the thermostat regulates how often the element turns on or off.

However, all coffee machines have safety mechanisms that protect the heating element against overheating. For example, some use thermal fuses, while others use a safety thermostat that simultaneously protects and regulates the heating element.

What happened: When the coffee machine turns on but doesn’t generate heat, it’s likely that the heating element has failed. As a result, electrical current can’t pass through the element and therefore won’t produce heat.

Besides that, a tripped thermostat or blown thermal fuse can also stop the heating element’s power supply. 

When the coffee machine overheats, it trips the thermostat or blows the thermal fuse. As a result, the electrical circuit is broken, and the heating element cools down thoroughly.

Solution: Failed heating elements cannot be repaired. So if that’s the root cause here, you’ll have to replace it with a new one. The same goes for blown thermal fuses. They can’t be reused after sacrificing themselves to break the electrical circuit.

However, a tripped safety thermostat can be reset. You’ll have to open the coffee machine to access the thermostat and push its button to reset the component.

Read: Why Breville Coffee Machine Not Turning On? – Troubleshooting Guide

Coffee Machine Has Slow Or No Water Flow

Parts to check: Firstly, check that the coffee machine has an incoming water supply. There should be water in the inlet hose or water tank for it to work.

Besides that, you must also check for a limescale buildup and faulty water valves.

What happened: Assuming your coffee machine has a steady water supply, it’ll have slow or no water flow if there’s a severe limescale buildup or faulty water valves.

More specifically, you’re likely to find a limescale buildup around hot parts of the machine, like around the heating element. Meanwhile, valves at the water tank, in the tubes, or even a solenoid valve could also fail to open and let water through.

Solution: You can remove limescale buildups by descaling the coffee machine. Start the cleaning cycle if your machine has one, and run vinegar through the machine to clear the limescale.

You can also inspect each water valve in the machine and clean it of any impurities. For example, coffee grounds and dirt can jam the valve and prevent them from opening normally.

Read: 4 Common Ninja Coffee Maker Problems

Coffee Machine Is Leaking Water

Parts to check: A water leak in your coffee machine has something to do with the water tank, hoses, hose connectors, and drain.

A crack or clog at any of those points can cause water to leak to places they don’t belong.

What happened: The leak in your coffee machine could originate from a cracked water tank or a pinhole leak at the hoses.

Besides that, you’ll want to check the hose connectors. Hoses are bound to the connectors using metal clips. However, the machine’s vibrations can shake the hose loose after an extended period.

Lastly, a clogged drain can overflow and cause water to leak. Coffee machines are prone to clogs thanks to coffee powder trapped inside.

Solution: In the short term, you can patch up any leaks in your water tank or hoses with waterproof tape. However, those are only meant to work briefly until you can get the necessary replacement parts.

Replace your cracked water tank and any hose sections with leaks in them. Then, ensure that the hoses are attached firmly to the connectors.

Lastly, flush the drain with water from both ends to remove clogs and restore smooth water flow.

Read: Cuisinart Coffee Maker Troubleshooting

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Successfully troubleshooting a coffee machine will require general knowledge about the appliance. So here are a few more questions and answers to help you better understand your coffee maker:

Can You Service Your Own Coffee Machine?

Yes, you can service and repair your own coffee machine. That’s especially true with household models, which are very straightforward and tend to have fewer complex components. However, you’ll want to lean on professional service technicians for professional coffee machines.

How Do I Reset My Coffee Maker?

You can reset your coffee maker by power cycling the unit. Firstly, disconnect it from the wall socket. Then, leave it alone for 2 minutes. During that time, the electronic components in the machine will reset themselves. Lastly, reconnect the power supply and turn your machine back on.

Read: How To Fix Breville Espresso Machine Frother Not Working – Troubleshooting Guide

What Is The Lifespan Of A Coffee Machine?

A typical coffee machine can last around 5 years. Naturally, higher-end models will last longer thanks to better components. Still, you can maximize your machine’s lifespan with regular cleaning and maintenance, including descaling.

How Do I Know If My Coffee Maker Is Broken?

You’ll know your coffee machine is on if it won’t heat up and brew coffee. That’s its primary purpose, so failing to do that means the machine is not in good shape.

How Do You Know When To Replace Your Coffee Maker?

You should replace your coffee maker when it’s no longer worth fixing. For example, its problems happen more often than ever before, and you’ll have to pay a lot for new parts. You should consider investing in a newer, better coffee maker when that happens.

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