Why Is My Coffee Not Brewing? (Troubleshooting Your Coffee Maker)

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You’ve just made your perfect cup of coffee, but it doesn’t taste as good as usual. So you think there might be something wrong with your coffee maker.

It’s easy to feel frustrated when something isn’t working as it should, especially when it comes to something as important as our morning coffee.

Don’t worry; troubleshooting a coffee maker is easy! 

We’ll walk you through the most common problems and how to fix them.

Check Your Machine’s Power Source

Checking the machine’s power source when the coffee maker is not brewing correctly is an essential step in troubleshooting the malfunction. 

Here are some steps you can take to check if the power source is causing your coffee maker not to brew:

  • Make sure the plug is fully inserted into a working outlet. If it appears loose or disconnected, try connecting it to another outlet.
  • Check the circuit breaker box and confirm that the switch is in the “on” position for whichever part of your house has power going to your coffee maker.
  • Look at your coffee maker’s cord and ensure there are no frayed or exposed wires; this could indicate a problem with your power source.
  • Check if there are any visible signs of burn marks near where you plug in your coffee maker. This could indicate that there was an issue with electricity flowing through correctly.

Inspecting your machine’s power source can help determine whether or not this contributes to why your coffee maker isn’t brewing correctly. 

After checking for issues with the power source, if you still haven’t found a solution, let’s look at another potential cause.

Check Your Water Level

Checking the water level when the coffee maker is not brewing correctly is a reasonably straightforward process. 

Here are some steps to help get you started:

  • First, ensure that your coffee maker has enough power source – securely plugged in and switched on.
  • Next, locate the water tank and check if it has been filled with enough fresh, cold water.
  • If the tank appears empty, refill it with cold tap water or filtered water up to the maximum fill line indicated on the tank.
  • Once you have filled up the water reservoir, please turn off the power switch and wait for at least 5 minutes before turning it back on. This will allow a little time for your coffee machine’s components to reset.
  • Place a cup underneath your filter holder and press the ‘brew’ button to run a brew cycle without any coffee grounds. The cup should then fill up with fresh water – this lets you know that there is sufficient pressure within your system to produce good-quality coffee.
  • If no water comes out of the filter holder or there is only a slight trickle, check that all your valves are open and free from blockages; if necessary, use a paper clip or similar object to clear them out. Also, check if any filters need replacing, as these can often become clogged over time which can reduce the flow rate significantly.

By following these steps, you should now be able to assess the water level in your coffee machine when it isn’t brewing correctly so that you can get back to enjoying your cup of coffee in no time! 

If the problem persists, let’s look at what could be causing other malfunctions with your coffee maker.

Check Your Coffee Filter

Checking the coffee filter when the coffee maker is not brewing correctly is a simple process that can help diagnose the issue and get your coffee maker running again. 

Here are some steps to follow:

  • First, unplug the coffee maker from its power source and remove any carafes or containers.
  • Locate the filter basket in the machine near the top behind a lid or door. If your filter basket has a paper filter instead of a reusable one, you’ll want to discard it and replace it with a new one.
  • Next, inspect the filter basket itself for any signs of damage, such as cracks or dents, if it is made of plastic or metal. If there are any visible signs of damage, you’ll need to replace the entire container before proceeding further.
  • Ensure your filter is properly placed inside the basket so that all grounds can be contained accordingly; if you need a reminder, most baskets will indicate where to place the filter (usually facing downwards).
  • Carefully check for any obstructions within inlet holes at the bottom of your filter basket, which might prevent water from entering correctly. If anything appears to be blocking them, you should use tweezers or another small tool to remove it carefully without damaging any parts of your coffee maker.
  • Finally, reassemble all parts and try to rerun a brew cycle – if your coffee maker is now functioning as expected, then you know it was the filter that needed replacing.

By taking these steps and following them diligently, you should be able to check your coffee filter when your coffee maker isn’t working correctly and hopefully get back up and running soon!

However, if none of these solutions work for you, then look into other potential causes, like the grind size of your coffee.

Check Your Grind Size

Another possible cause when a coffee maker is not brewing correctly is incorrect grind size. Checking the grind size is a simple process that only takes a few minutes.

Here are some tips to help you get started:

  • Make sure you have fresh coffee grounds – old grounds can cause the coffee to taste bitter or weak and be challenging to brew.
  • Look at the grind size of your coffee grounds – if it’s too coarse, it will take longer for the water to pass through and extract flavor. On the other hand, if it’s too fine, your brew will become overly strong and bitter. Most experts recommend using a medium-fine grind for a balanced cup of coffee.
  • Use a burr grinder instead of a blade grinder; this grinder provides more consistent sizes, so you can ensure you get an even extraction every time.
  • Experiment with different grind sizes; start with medium-fine, then adjust according to your preference. Make notes so you can remember what works best for future use.

Once you’ve checked the grind size of your beans and ensured that they are fresh and properly ground, it’s time to give your coffee maker another try!

If everything was done correctly on all the malfunctions, your coffee maker should be working properly again.

If this isn’t the case, then it may be best to call a technician, as there could be an underlying issue with your machine that requires professional expertise.

How to clean your dirty coffee machine?

Cleaning a coffee machine can be daunting, especially when the appliance has been neglected for some time and is now covered in stubborn grime.

However, with the right approach and cleaning supplies, you can easily make your coffee maker look new again, no matter how dirty it may seem.

We’ll show you how to clean your coffee machine with easy-to-follow steps, so you don’t have to worry about any grime, dirt, or limescale buildup again.

Clean your dirty coffee machine in 8 easy steps:

  • Start by unplugging the coffee maker from the power socket and allow it to cool down.
  • Empty the unit’s remaining coffee grounds, water, and old filters.
  • Remove any mechanical parts that can be taken apart and cleaned separately, such as the filter holder, carafe lid, portafilter basket, drip tray, and water tank.
  • Use a soft cloth or brush to wipe down all exterior surfaces on the machine.
  • Using a damp cloth dipped in a solution of mild dishwashing soap and warm water, clean all interior surfaces within the coffee maker, including its nozzle area, carafe rest pad, and the top surface of the hot plate.
  • Rinse all removable parts with fresh water, then put them back into place in the unit.
  • For more thorough cleaning, fill up the main reservoir with one part vinegar to two parts cold water, then start the brewing cycle halfway through. Then turn it off for an hour before resuming until completion. Discard any remaining solution afterward, then run fresh water through several cycles until there is no longer a vinegar smell or aftertaste in your brewed coffee.
  • Once emptying all liquid contents from the coffee maker are, dry off all interior and exterior surfaces entirely before plugging it back into its power source for use again.


Coffee enthusiasts know that their morning cup of joe needs special attention if they want great results every time they brew their favorite blend.

Of course, proper grinding size and fresh filters are essential for ensuring that each cup tastes just right—but even then, things may occasionally go wrong if something gets blocked along the way or if you forget about changing those filters regularly!

We hope these troubleshooting tips will help keep your coffee maker running smoothly so you can enjoy delicious cups every morning!


Why is my coffee machine not pouring coffee?

There are a few possible reasons why a coffee machine may not be pouring coffee. First, the power may be off, or the machine may not have been properly plugged in. Check to ensure the power cord is securely connected and turned on. Secondly, the water reservoir may be empty or blocked. If the water reservoir is low, fill it with fresh cold water and check for any blockages in the tube running from the reservoir to the pump. Thirdly, if you’re using pre-packaged pods or capsules to make coffee, ensure they are compatible with your machine and seated properly. Fourth, check for clogged filters or group heads, which should be cleaned regularly. Lastly, if all else fails, it may simply need resetting.

How often should I clean my coffee machine?

It is essential to clean your coffee machine regularly to ensure you enjoy the freshest, most flavorful coffee every time. Generally speaking, it’s recommended that coffee machines be cleaned at least once a month – more often if you use your machine heavily. This will help keep your coffee tasting great and free of any residue or bacteria. Additionally, it will prevent rust buildup and extend the life of your machine.

Why is my coffee coming out so light?

Several factors can contribute to a light-colored cup of coffee. The most common is the grind size of your beans; if they are too finely ground, it can restrict the water flow and yield an under-extracted cup. You’re also possibly using too little or low-quality coffee beans, leading to a weak cup. Additionally, the brewing temperature of your water might need to be higher and hot enough to extract all the flavor from your beans properly. Finally, it’s also possible that you’ve over-filtered your coffee, removing any oils and flavors produced during the extraction process.

Why is my coffee maker not pumping water?

There are several possible causes for a coffee maker not pumping water. Perhaps the most common is an obstructed filter, which a buildup of sediment or scale from hard water may cause. It’s also possible that the pump itself is clogged; if so, it can often be cleared with a paper clip or small needle, although this should be done with care. The water pump could also be faulty, so you may need to replace it. Additionally, there may be an issue with the power supply; check all your connections to ensure they are correctly secured. Finally, always make sure that the water tank is full before brewing.

How long should a coffee maker last?

High-quality coffee makers can last for several years when properly taken care of. To extend the life of your machine, it’s essential to regularly clean and descale it using approved products or natural solutions like vinegar or lemon juice. You should also check all connections and replace any worn-out parts as needed. Additionally, always store the coffee maker away from extreme temperatures and humidity to prevent damage. If properly taken care of, a coffee maker can last anywhere from three to five years or more.

Why does my coffee maker stop brewing halfway?

There are several possible causes for a coffee maker to stop brewing halfway. First, it’s possible that the filter is blocked, either from too much sediment or scale from hard water or from over-filling it with too many grounds. Additionally, if your machine has an auto-off feature, it could be shut down prematurely due to age or wear and tear. Finally, it’s also possible that the heating element is not working correctly; if so, you may need to replace it. To prevent this from happening again, always be sure to descale and clean your coffee maker regularly. ​

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Luca Dupres is the founder of Brew Coffee Daily, a website devoted to helping coffee enthusiasts make better decisions about buying and brewing quality coffee. Luca has been a coffee lover since 2014 and is passionate about food, traveling, and writing. He founded Brew Coffee Daily in 2022 with the mission of helping people make better decisions about coffee and providing them with resources and advice about all things coffee. Luca firmly believes that anyone can make great coffee with the right tools and guidance.

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