How Do I Clean the Inside of a Coffee Percolator?

clean-inside-coffee-percolator Credit: Katherin Ziegler/Digital Vision/Getty Images

To clean the inside of a coffee percolator, empty the machine, fill the reservoir with a mixture of distilled water and white vinegar, run the cycle on the machine, run a few more cycles with only water, and wash the filter and carafe. Cleaning a coffee maker takes about an hour and requires distilled water and white vinegar.

  1. Empty the coffee percolator

    Remove any water, coffee or coffee grounds from the coffee maker. Be sure to empty both the carafe and reservoir. Rinse out the carafe with hot water.

  2. Use white vinegar

    Fill the carafe halfway with white vinegar and halfway with distilled water. Pour the mixture into the reservoir.

  3. Run a cycle

    Turn on the coffee maker, and run a regular brew cycle with the vinegar and distilled water solution. When the cycle is complete, allow the solution to sit in the carafe for at least 15 minutes.

  4. Remove the vinegar

    Pour out the vinegar solution, and fill the reservoir with distilled water. Run the brew cycle again. Repeat until the coffee maker no longer has an odor from the vinegar. Use fresh distilled water each cycle.

  5. Wash the filter and carafe

    Use hot, soapy water to wash the filter and carafe, or place them on the top rack of your dishwasher. After they are clean, the coffee maker is ready for normal use.