Today as I found a little time to descale my espresso machine and auto drip, I was thinking about all the coffee machines and two cheap espresso machines that my parents tossed because they broke. The reality is my parents live in an area with extremely hard water and scale builds up fast when machines are heating water inside of them. Since my parents never descaled their machines, the scale eventually I am assuming killed these machines, which is why my parents have only bought twenty dollar machines for the past 20 years or so.
This brings me to the point of this post, you must descale any machine you use to brew coffee with! Otherwise you are probably cutting short the useful life of your equipment. So we must remember with coffee equipment that an ounce of citric acid is worth a pound of cure.
Descaling a machine sounds a little intense, but in reality is pretty simple you are going to mix a citric acid solution, you can get this at Roaste in a seven ounce bag or actually my preference is to get it here in single packs. From there you mix roughly two ounces of per 32 ounces of water and pour it in your machine's empty water tank. Then if you are lucky your auto drip machine has a cleaning cycle that will heat the water up brew a few cups then stop for a while and let it sit, doing this a few times. If you are not so lucky you must do this manually, let your machine brew a few cups stop and let the solution sit in there and disolve any mineral deposits that may have built up, you want it to sit there I would say 15 minutes and do this maybe three times.
After you are done just have your machine brew two pots of water to rince it out and you are clean. I would advise most people to do this every three months and if you live in a area with really hard water probably every month or two.
We spend 100 dollars on a nice auto drip machine and well we should want to keep them going for a long time even if it means using a little money to do so. Right now my auto drip is still going strong after 3 plus years of use and I hope it continues for some time and I know for sure it's not going to be beacuse of scale!
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Coffee: Klatch Ethiopian Gedeo Worka Natural
Taste: Pretty flat, tried to updose and make grind a little coarser. Got the right timing on the shot, but lost a lot of the fruity flavors that make this coffee so good, boring. Going to lower the dose and grind tighter for the next one.