Asked on May 21, 2015

Keurig coffee makers--Bad taste after cleaning.

Barb Gercone
by Barb Gercone

Concerened about bacteria in Keuring coffe maker, I used vinegar to clean my Keurig. After several rinses and made several cups of clear water. Tried to brew a cup of coffee and it tastes aweful like vinegar. I have brewed two more and still the bad taste remains. I removed the charcoal filter in the tank thinking it had absorbed the vinegar taste but it still tastes sour! What can I do to get rid of this bad taste? Help anyone?

  17 answers
  • Terry Terry on May 21, 2015
    You need to rinse and rinse.
    • See 1 previous
    • Barbara Jo Grant Morgan Barbara Jo Grant Morgan on Jan 06, 2018

      I had to fill reservoir about 5 times and run it all through. Think smell, taste finally out! Will try a cup of tea later. Already had to throw away 4 pods that were disgusting. Money wasted!

  • Elizabeth Sunset Elizabeth Sunset on May 22, 2015
    Hi! I bought a Keurig at a yard sale and wanted to make sure it was really clean so I went online and found that the brand site has a TON of videos on how to clean and use their products properly. Here is the link:
    • Barb Gercone Barb Gercone on May 22, 2015
      @Elizabeth Sunset Thank you Elizabeth I will check out the website and videos!
  • Christine Thompson Christine Thompson on May 23, 2015
    I cleaned my Keurig for the first time last week. I removed the charcoal filter first. I ran the vinegar through once and let it sit for an hour, then ran another cup through and let it sit again. Then emptied the vinegar out of the water reservoir, rinsed it well, and replaced it with fresh water. I then ran cup after cup through until I could no longer smell the vinegar in the water, and then ran 2 more cups through again just to be sure. I always picked the largest cup size. All tastes fine. Had to replace one Keurig because my young daughter thought she would try milk in the machine for a hot chocolate, and didn't tell me. When it didn't work she rinsed out the milk and added water. I just thought it was clogged and tried the vinegar method. Well of course vinegar, milk, and heat results in something really gross and thick cheese like clumps clogged it. Nothing would flush it out. If I had known about the milk I would never have used the vinegar. I hope you have much better luck.
    • Peggy Peggy on Dec 15, 2017

      I haven't remove the filter either for cleaning with vinager, I wonder if that why the coffee rate bitter. Can you buy replacement filter at Walmart

  • Kathy Cummings Huffman Kathy Cummings Huffman on May 23, 2015
    Just a bit of trivia for you all, did you know the man that invented the Keurig wishes he had never done it? All the little plastic cups tossed in the garbage bothers him, he feels he has created an environmental monster. I have no opinion one way the other as I don't drink coffee but I thought that was an interesting tidbit.
    • See 3 previous
    • Barb Gercone Barb Gercone on May 23, 2015
      @Kathy Cummings Huffman Oh I did not think you were Kathy! We are all responsible for creating a mess for furture generations to deal with! Have a great day! We are good here ;)
  • Therese Ryan-Haas Therese Ryan-Haas on May 23, 2015
    @Kathy Cummings Huffman . I felt the same way. I was given the Keurig. To save the land fills, and cash I tried to refill the pods lol. Hubby thought I was nuts. Then I found San Francisco Bay coffee. Cups are 97% biodegradable and are half the price!
    • See 3 previous
    • Therese Ryan-Haas Therese Ryan-Haas on May 28, 2015
      @Barb Gercone I agree with you. I even bought 6 of those reusable cups. ( $1 each at the American Science and surplus store) Was such a pain to clean.
  • Christine Thompson Christine Thompson on May 24, 2015
    Funny thing, I don't even drink coffee. I use mine for tea. If I can't get the Keurig tea on sale I just use the machine for hot water for my tea bags. I hate it when my husband makes coffee with it before I use it for tea. You get left over coffee residue in the cup holder, even after I remove it and rinse it thoroughly and it leaves a bad taste in the tea.
  • Linda Haluska Linda Haluska on May 16, 2017

    I love my coffee...therefore I love my Keurig. I recently just cleaned mine with vinegar and experienced a similar problem...still flushing it out. However, I had come across a reusable filter for the Keurig. You just add your own coffee grain in Brew it in your Keurig as if it was a K-Cup. I love mine

    • See 2 previous
    • Ann Ann on Nov 10, 2019

      Hi did you ever resolve your issue with your coffee taste ? I am just at a lost what to do. I have rinsed and rinsed and though it’s not as strong of a bitter taste, but I still feel my liquid cream/almond milk hasn’t mixed the same every since the clean. I am concerned and I don’t want to be drinking particles of cleaning solution. Should I just invest into a new one ?

      thank you

  • Rogena Woods-Mitchell Rogena Woods-Mitchell on Jul 03, 2017

    I purchased the single and large reusable K cups and have been extremely pleased. I rarely find the coffee that I enjoy on sale in the Keurig cups and I too didn't really like the thought of all the non recyclable trash. But I'm STILL running clear water through my unit to remove the sour taste 🙄

  • Kmdreamer Kmdreamer on Jul 04, 2017

    rinse more water through it

    • See 1 previous
    • JoAnne P Thorn-Miller JoAnne P Thorn-Miller on Aug 02, 2018

      If you find out, please tell. A couple gulps of vinegar coffee this morning, after initially thinking it would only be the first or maybe second cup has me decaffeinated. And after reading these accounts of how many tanks of water they went through, I am discouraged. Your post is pretty recent. I was also pretty heavy handed with the vinegar, I have cleaned other coffee makers without any problems.

  • Christine Thompson Christine Thompson on Dec 15, 2017

    I have the add on filter that goes in the water reservoir. I got it at Wal-Mart. You can get spare ones there also. You are supposed to change them every 3 months I think.

  • Dusty Kramer Dusty Kramer on Dec 18, 2017

    I received a new Keurig Compact model as a gift and after the recommended cleaning procedure from the installation instructions I found that it produced coffee with a debilitating burnt plastic taste. I found online hundreds of similar complaints. After performing the many recommendations for additional cleaning, the burnt plastic taste could not be eliminated. In my case it was not the reservoir causing the problem as many online people suggest, but something internal. I have returned the item for store credit. It's hard to understand how Keurig allowed this problem to surface in the first place. Apparently they do not conduct on-going quality control.

  • Kathy Hewitt Kathy Hewitt on May 06, 2018

    Still rinsing mine, but if you love your Keurig and worry about the environment Amazon sells a cutter that disassembles the cups, the empty cups go in plastic recycle and the paper filters and grounds go into garden. All that's left is the little piece of foil on top and I'm working of that.

  • Daniel C Pierce Daniel C Pierce on Jul 07, 2018

    I rinsed for full tanks of water through mine before I made coffee.

    An easy way to tell if there is still cleaning solution in the water is to put a little cream in the used water. If it sperates into curds, you still have acid in the water. Keep rinsing.

    Lemon juice, white vinegar, and Keurig descaling solution are all acidic, to remove lime scale, which is a base, thus they will all cause milk/cream to separate into curds (chunks) and whey (liquid).

  • Laura Michalski Laura Michalski on Jul 07, 2018

    Thanks, I am grossed out I was drinking that acid in my coffee today. I will rinse 3 more tanks then. Thank you!

  • Kmdreamer Kmdreamer on Jul 08, 2018

    If you have the one with the caraf so 2 of them if you have by the cup I would do 2 whole water tank fulls

  • Kmdreamer Kmdreamer on Jul 08, 2018

    Just a FYI you could buy coffee pods on ebay or ocean state really cheep victor Allen’s coffee is great it’s at ocean state and Christmas tree shops

  • Kmdreamer Kmdreamer on Aug 02, 2018

    You have to at least rinse 3 tank fulls of clean water