Why does Keurig keep shutting off while brewing?

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Johny Morrisson

It’s very frustrating when you put the pod in your Keurig, hit brew, and your machine refuses to work.

You keep hitting the brew button a few more times, hoping that it starts working again, but all in vain.  

Fortunately, you landed on the right page because I have done proper research and outlined some solutions to this problem.

Usually, a Keurig keeps shutting off because the K-cup hasn’t been punctured by the needle in the pod holder. Other causes might be clogged exit needles, misaligned water reservoir magnets, the machine requiring descaling, or faulty outlets.

3 solutions for Keurig Keep shutting off when you hit the brew

  1. The bottom of the K-cup is Unpunctured – clean the needles
  2. Misaligned magnet in water Reservoir – fix the water reservoir
  3. Mineral Build Up Inside the machine – Run a Descaling Cycle

1) The K-cup is Unpunctured | Keurig needles are dirty, clogged, or broken

One of the most likely reasons Keurig keeps shutting off while brewing is the Piercing Needles of your machine are dirty.

The needles puncture the pod both from the top and bottom to make the way for water to pass through.

If the bottom of the pod isn’t punctured, the water injected into it is unable to escape, and the Keurig will stop brewing to avoid overflow.

This usually happens when you don’t clean your Keurig regularly. Used coffee grounds accumulate at the sharp edges of the needles. And, the needles become unable to pierce the pods.

If your Keurig keeps turning off, open the head of the machine take the coffee pod out, and check whether there is a hole in the bottom or not. You have found the culprit if there is no hole at the bottom.  


There are three solutions to fix this problem

I) Clean the needle with a paper clip

If you notice that there is huge debris of used coffee grounds around the needles then cleaning it with a paper clip will be the best option.

Straighten the head of the paper clip. Open the head of the machine and move the paper clip around the needles to remove all the debris.

II) Poke the hole at the bottom of the K-cup manually by pressing it inside the K-cup holder with force until it gets punctured. Then rotate the K cup to 90 degrees and start brewing.

This hack is actually recommended especially if you are using milk or flavored K cups.

III) Replace the exit needles

If you notice that the exit needles are bent or damaged beyond repair then you can buy replacement pod holders with exit needles.

You can find replacement needles for your model here

2) Misaligned magnet in water Reservoir

There’s a magnet inside the Keurig machine’s water reservoir which detects the water level in the reservoir.

Over time, this magnet might get misaligned from the original position due to vibrations or other reasons. And when the magnet gets misaligned, the water level can’t be detected and Keurig won’t brew coffee.


Unplug the machine and remove the water reservoir(if Keurig has a removable water reservoir), check the magnet inside the water tank to make sure that the magnet on the water reservoir is lined up with the magnet on the brewer.

If the magnet is not aligned properly you can try to align it by yourself or you might need the help of a technician to do it.

3) Machines require Descaling/cleaning

If you haven’t descaled your machine for more than 3 minutes. Then there is a chance that your Keurig keeps turning off because of some blockage inside the machine and it requires descaling.

Maintenance and cleaning are mandatory for the smooth functioning of coffee makers.

If the mineral buildup is left untreated, it causes water blockage inside the machine. This can also cause the problem of Keurig not brewing a full cup or dripping slowly.


To fix the problem you have to descale the machine. Descaling will remove any mineral deposits and completely clean the inside of your machine.

Here’s a brief guide on how to descale a Keurig:

1- Empty the water reservoir and remove any used K-Cups.

2- Pour the descaling solution and water mixture into the water reservoir.

3- Place a large mug or container on the drip tray. Run a brew cycle without inserting a K-Cup. Discard the liquid collected in the mug. And Repeat the brew cycle process until the water reservoir is empty.

4- Refill the water reservoir with clean water and run multiple brew cycles to rinse out any remaining solution.

5- Wipe down the exterior of the machine and remove and clean removable parts like the drip tray, K-Cup holder, and water reservoir.

Here are the descaling instructions for all Keurig Models

Some Hacks to apply if your Keurig keeps shutting off while brewing

If you’re Keurig still keeps shutting off when you try to descale the machine or when you try to brew the coffee there might be some other problem with your Keurig.

In that situation, you can apply these hacks. Probably it will work for you as it helped many users.

1) Remove the excess water

Sometimes the excess water gets into the pipeline and the internal water tank of the machine and causes the Keurig to shut off while brewing.

To fix this, You need to remove the water reservoir and press your finger into the little plastic bladder where the water reservoir fits.

Turn the machine upside down with the finger still holding the plastic bladder. You should now see a lot of water slurping out of the top. Shake the machine back and forth to remove all the excess water.

Now, turn the machine over, reinstall the water reservoir, plug it in, and test it with a new coffee pod.

I know this is a weird solution but it has worked for many users!

2) Use Branded K Cups

Sometimes Keurig will stop brewing if low-quality or incompatible pods are used. Mostly cheap K cup pods are made of low-quality plastics that can’t be pierced easily by Keurig needles.

That’s why I always recommend buying K cups from reputable brands like Green Mountain, Peets, or Starbucks.

3) Reset the Keurig

Resetting your Keurig machine might solve this problem.

Resetting the machine will erase all the data from the machine such as your brew settings. And if the error in the machine is because of some malware in the system it will also be erased.

Simply turn off your Keurig machine and leave it unplugged for half an hour to reset it.

4) Disable the Auto-off feature

Disable the auto shut-off feature on your Keurig if it keeps turning off while brewing. Sometimes the auto shut-off feature causes the machine to automatically shut off while brewing.

5) Leave the machine overnight

Although this is not a proven trick, yes, this works for some users, unplug the machine, remove the water reservoir, and empty it. Leave it overnight.

After a day, place the water tank back, fill it with water, and try to brew. Hopefully, this will fix the issue!

6) Change the Electric outlet or plug of the machine

Sometimes, we think that there is an issue with the machine but in reality, the electric outlet is the main culprit.

So, try plugging the machine into some other electric outlet. If the outlet was the issue your machine will start working properly.

The plug of the machine also starts malfunctioning sometimes because of a short circuit or some wiring problems. You might consider changing the plug if you haven’t found any other issues.

7) A hack for Keurig Supreme models

The Keurig Supreme models have a very tight covering on the water tank.

Because of that, Vacuum might build when the brewer is extracting water from the tank. This will prevent water from exiting the carafe, forcing the machine to shut down and stop brewing.

Try brewing without the lid on to see if that helps.

8) Contact Keurig customer services

If unfortunately, all these hacks won’t work for you, the ultimate solution is to contact Keurig customer service to seek professional help.

Keurig Model reviews

Final thoughts

I know it’s very frustrating when Keurig keeps shutting off while brewing. And the primary reason behind creating this piece of content is to get you out of this problem.

I hope the solutions mentioned in this article will help you and your Keurig will start working properly.


Why won’t my Keurig stay on?

Most of the Keurig models have an auto shut-off feature. That means if you are not using the machine, it will turn off automatically.
The primary purpose of this function is to save energy. But if you don’t like it you can disable it.

How long do Keurigs last?

The lifespan of a Keurig machine can vary depending on the model, usage, and maintenance. On average, a well-maintained Keurig machine can last for 3-5 years. However, some Keurig machines may last longer with proper care and maintenance.


Johny Morrison is a founder and content creator at Coffee About. He knows everything there is to know about coffee and loves sharing his passion with others.

You can often find him sipping a single-origin pour-over, rich French press, or pulling espresso shots at home. Johny loves full-bodied dark roasts – the bolder, the better!

As a former barista, he takes coffee equipment seriously and enjoys experimenting with the latest gear. When he’s not brewing or blogging, Johny is scouting local cafes for his next coffee fix.

2 thoughts on “Why does Keurig keep shutting off while brewing?”

  1. Another issue that we had with our K-Elite was getting some coffee K-cups with no filter in them. The grounds clog up the bottom needle immediately and shuts the machine off. I know because I cut it open and there was no filter. After cleaning, we started checking to make sure the ones we put in have filters by holding them up to the light. That solved our issue with it shutting down while brewing.


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