How to clean Cuisinart coffee maker? The right way to do it!

Whether you use filtered water or tap water, mineral and limescale buildup in your coffee maker is inevitable. You need to descale and clean your Cuisinart Coffee Maker every three to six months.

A clean coffee maker is the secret to a perfect brew every time. In this guide, we’ll dive right into how to clean your Cuisinart coffee maker and keep that java flowing just the way you like it.

How To Clean Cuisinart Coffee Maker?

When you should clean the Cuisinart coffee maker?

Most of the Cuisinart coffee makers have a self-cleaning function, and the “clean light” starts blinking when cleaning and descaling are needed.

But if for some reason the light is not blinking or your Cuisinart coffeemaker lacks the “clean light” feature you should look out for the following signs.

As soon as you notice any of these signs it’s time to clean and descale the Cuisinart coffeemaker thoroughly.

  • The temperature of the coffee is not as hot as it used to be.
  • The coffee maker is taking longer to brew a cup of coffee than usual.
  • There is a weird burnt taste in the cup of coffee.
  • Your coffee maker is not brewing a full cup of coffee.

Even if you don’t notice any of the signs above it’s a good practice to thoroughly clean the coffeemaker once in every 3 to 4 months or after 300-400 cups of coffee.

Also Read: How To Use Cuisinart Coffee Maker

How often should you clean the Cuisinart coffee maker

There are many working parts of the Cuisinart coffee maker here’s how often you should clean them.

Daily cleaning

Here’s the list of parts that need to be cleaned after every brew

  • Coffee filter basket/K cup pod holder
  • Carafe and the Carafe Lid
  • Grinder
  • Drip Tray

These parts must be cleaned daily to maintain the flavors and the freshness of the brew. To clean simply disassemble these parts and rinse them with warm soapy water.

In most Cuisinart coffee makers these parts are dishwasher safe. So you can easily clean them by putting them in the top rack of the dishwasher.

Monthly cleaning

You should change the charcoal water filter every month or at least every sixty days depending on the quality of water you are using for brewing.

You can buy replacement charcoal water filters here.

Also, remove the water reservoir (if it’s removable) and rinse it with warm soapy water.

Cleaning the exterior of your coffee maker should also be a part of your monthly cleaning routine to maintain the shiny look of the coffee maker.

Just wipe the exterior with warm soapy water (or you can also use a glass cleaning solution for extra shine) and let it dry.

Quarterly cleaning

Cuisinart recommends descaling the coffee maker every 3 to 6 months or after every 300 cups of coffee whichever comes first.

Regular descaling is crucial for maintaining the optimal performance of your coffee maker. Limescale buildup, a common occurrence in coffee makers, can lead to malfunctions and affect the quality of your coffee.

How to Clean Cuisinart Coffee Maker with Clean button | (Step-by-step Guide)

Self-cleaning coffee makers from Cuisinart are very easy to clean. They have useful cleaning indicator that becomes solid whenever there is a need for cleaning.

Clean Cuisinart Coffee Maker

What do you need

  1. A soapy solution
  2. A piece of cloth or towel
  3. Warm water
  4. White Vinegar

Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to clean a self-cleaning Cuisinart maker.

1) Clean the outside

You can start by cleaning the outer surface of the coffee maker by dampening a cloth or towel with warm soapy water and wiping off the surface.

Don’t use a scorching pad or anything abrasive otherwise, the body of the coffee maker will become full of scratches.

2) Prepare the Descaling solution

Now it’s time to start the descaling process. Descaling will remove any limestone build-up inside the machine.

To start, empty the water tank and remove the charcoal water filter.

Fill the water reservoir with 2/3 of the water and 1/3 of the white vinegar solution.

3) Hit the self-clean button

To initiate the descaling, firmly press and hold the self-clean button for three seconds. Once the “self-clean” indicator light begins blinking, release the button.

The vinegar-water mixture will automatically begin the cleaning process, effectively removing any residue or impurities from the coffee maker’s internal components.

Allow the solution to flow completely through the machine until the indicator light turns solid, signaling the completion of the self-clean cycle. This process typically takes around 10-15 minutes.

4) run the rinsing cycle

To effectively eliminate any traces of vinegar left after the cleaning cycle, proceed to rinse the coffee maker with fresh water.

This step is crucial to prevent the unpleasant taste of vinegar from affecting the flavor of the following brew.

Simply fill the water reservoir with clean drinking water and activate the clean cycle. Allow the water to dispense completely.

It is recommended to repeat the rinsing cycle two to three times, ensuring the complete elimination of vinegar residue.

Also Read: Best self Cleaning coffee makers

How to clean Cuisinart coffee maker WIthout Clean Button

Depending on the model of the Cuisinart coffeemaker, there are three ways to start the descaling cycle.

  1. Press the 6 oz and 8 oz buttons simultaneously until the clean light starts flashing.
  2. Press the hot water button
  3. Keep pressing the largest cup-size button until the water and vinegar solution in the reservoir is finished.

How to Clean Grinder of Cuisinart Coffee Maker

Cleaning the grinder regularly prevents stale coffee residue from building up and compromising flavor. Here’s how to clean it properly:

  1. Unplug the coffee maker and remove the grinder basket. Tap out any loose grounds into the trash.
  2. Use a small brush to dislodge remaining coffee particles inside the grinder and chute. A clean toothbrush works great.
  3. Rinse the grinder basket thoroughly under hot water to remove all traces of residue.
  4. Let all parts dry fully before replacing the grinder basket.

It’s crucial to brush out the grinder after each use. Leftover grounds quickly go stale and will taint the taste of following brew.

How to clean a Cuisinart coffee maker without vinegar

Vinegar is a commonly used descaling agent, but there are other options as well.

Lemon Juice

Lemon Juice is an excellent substitute for vinegar but it’s quite expensive though. To descale, just prepare a regular 2/3 water and 1/3 lemon juice solution and run the cycle.


Vodka is another excellent but expensive substitute for vinegar as alcohol has good cleansing properties. Just prepare a regular 1 to 3 ratio Vodka to Water solution and run the descaling cycle.

Baking Soda

Baking soda is one of the common household substances and it has good cleansing properties too.

Add 6 to 8 spoons of baking soda to water to prepare a descaling solution.

You can also add baking soda to the Vinegar and water mixture to prepare an extra strong descaling solution.

Some Useful Tips for cleaning Cuisinart coffee maker

  • Always use filtered water with vinegar because direct tap water may add other mineral deposits inside the machine to further complex the cleaning process.
  • After Descaling, allow the carafe to reach room temperature before filling it with cold water because suddenly adding cold water causes a drastic temperature change that can cause the carafe glass to crack or shatter.
  • Clean the removable parts like the Coffee filter basket/pod holder, Carafe and Carafe lid, Drip tray, and the Grinder (If present) every time you brew a cup of coffee.
  • Do not use concentrated vinegar solution (use dilute solution) because it can become difficult to neutralize the smell of concentrated vinegar.
  • To maintain the shiny look of the coffee maker wipe the exterior body with a glass cleansing solution.
  • Make sure to remove the water filter while running the descaling cycle.
  • Change the charcoal water filter every two months.

Final thoughts

That wraps up our deep cleaning guide for Cuisinart coffee maker models! Remember to descale, scrub, and decalcify all parts to get that factory fresh performance.

Share your best Cuisinart cleaning tips in the comments!

I’d love to hear your favorite descaling solutions, the cleaning schedule you follow, or any stubborn stains you’ve tackled.

Frequently Asked Question

how to turn off the clean light on the Cuisinart coffee maker

Sometimes even after properly cleaning and descaling the machine, the clean light won’t go off in the Cuisinart Coffee Maker.
In that case, try running the descaling cycle 2-3 times more. There may be extra minerals in your coffeemaker that weren’t removed during the first cycle.
If the light is still on consult with a professional from Cuisinart support.

Is vinegar or baking soda better for cleaning the coffee maker?

Vinegar is the best choice for cleaning a coffee maker and is way better than baking soda.
Vinegar removes all the odors and mineral buildup from the coffee machine. While you can also use baking soda for cleaning but it will not be that effective.




Johny Morrisson is a passionate coffee enthusiast and an avid blogger dedicated to exploring the world of coffee.

Whether it's repairing or troubleshooting coffee equipment, reviewing cutting-edge brewing machines, or delving into the latest coffee trends, Johny's writing captivates readers and invites them on a flavorful journey.

When he's not writing, Johny enjoys traveling, seeking inspiration from different cultures and coffee traditions worldwide.

Leave a Comment