Keurig Troubleshooting – When Not Working Properly

By: Olivia Taylor

Keurig Troubleshooting
Photo By: Andrea Piacquadio at Pexels

Keurig Not Working Properly?

Keurig is the original single serve coffee pod brewer. It has been on the market for almost thirty years. People like because its offers a variety of flavors in single servings – convenience without waste. Like with all technology that offers convenience, it doesn’t come without problems. We’ve created a Keurig Troubleshooting Guide: when your machine isn’t working like is should. Take a look at the twelve most common problems and questions regarding your machine.

Keurig Descale Light Stays On

One of the most common problems with the Keurig is the descale light stays on. If you need help with this, you’ve come to the right place. When the descale light comes on, it is letting you know that you need to clean your machine. Once the machine is cleaned, the descale light should turn off.

Here are the steps to descale your Keurig machine:

  1. Unplug your Keurig, to make sure no power is going to the machine
  2. Empty and remove the internal water filter
  3. Grab the descale solution and pour it inside the machine to clean out any built up residue
  4. Plug the machine in, put a cup underneath it, and turn the power on
  5. Pour out the liquid into a sink
  6. Turn on the brewer
  7. Last, rinse the water reservoir

Your Keurig should be cleaned every three months. If the descale light is still on, you can descale your machine with something stronger like vinegar. Simply let the vinegar sit in the machine for an hour or two before plugging in the machine and turning the power on.

This should fix the descale light problem. If it doesn’t and the machine light stays on, hold down the 8oz and 10oz button for 5 seconds and the light will turn off.

Will not descale?

If your Keurig isn’t working well, you may need to descale it. Your Keurig should be descaled every three months. However, if you use our Keurig more often, you may need to do it once a month.

If your Keurig will not descale, you may have a large amount of scale built up. Simply, descale your machine a second time. Citric acid or vinegar can be used to get through build up.

Keurig 2.0 leaking water after brewing?

As with all technology every now and then there is going to be a few problems that pop up and Keurig is no exception. Leaking water after brewing is a very common problem. You don’t have to go out and buy a new machine, because this problem can be fixed with a little bit of effort.

The most common reason why your Keurig is leaking water is because the upper gasket is shot, missing or needs to be adjusted. The gasket is located near the puncture needle. Leaking water usually indicates the gasket is not placed exactly in the right spot.

It is unlikely that your gasket is missing unless you took your machine apart. The most common reason your Keurig is leaking water is because the gasket needs to be adjusted. There should be a solid seal between the incoming water supply and the k-cup to prevent leaking.

If the gasket isn’t in the right spot it can lead to more problems than leaking water. For example, it could lead to coffee grounds leaking out or a combination of leaking water and leaking coffee grounds. Double trouble. Once you fix the gasket your machine should stop leaking water.

Keurig Troubleshooting – Not Heating

If your Keurig is not heating, you can solve this problem by doing some simple troubleshooting. As with most technology, you can usually fix it by a simple reboot or reset. There are a few reasons your Keurig may not be heating.

The heating mechanism may be failing. It is designed to turn off if the machine is overheating. As a result, the water in the machine may not pump properly. Wait a bit for the machine to cool down, then try again.

If this doesn’t solve your problem, you may need to take a look at your water pump. Coffee grounds and debris can get clog your machine which can prevent your Keurig from heating.

Keurig Troubleshooting – Making Noise

If your Keurig is making a humming noise and won’t stop no matter what you may have to do a little cleaning. The first step is to unplug your machine and plug it back in again. If the humming continues, grab a wet dish cloth and clean inside and around the sensor. This quick fix should stop the noise.

Keurig 2.0 Won’t Stop Pumping Water?

Pumping water continuously, is another common problem. A lot of people report that their machine pumps from the second they turn on the machine until they turn it off.

The first thing your want to do is make sure you’re using bottled, filtered or tap water to make your delicious coffee. You should never use soft or distilled water. If switching to one of these doesn’t work, try this quick fix.

  1. Unplug your machine
  2. Take out the reservoir
  3. Turn your machine upside down and shake it a little
  4. Turn it back over and put the reservoir back in

This simple crazy trick along with the right kind of water should stop your machine from pumping water continuously.

Making noise while drawing water?

Even when a Keurig is brand new, it is known to make a lot of noise when brewing. However, if your machine is making more noise than usual, you may need to do some troubleshooting.

Coffee grounds or minerals from water, can clog the lining of your machine. This will force your machine to work hard, and make more noise. It is important to use the right type of filtered water to avoid this type of buildup. The best way to reduce noise is to descale our machine. This will help remove buildup.

Keurig Troubleshooting – Moldy Inside

As with all kitchen gadgets, you have to clean and maintain them to keep them in best working order. If you don’t clean them properly and frequently they could form harmful bacteria or mold. You may suspect mold or bacteria if you coffee is tasting strange.

Preventing mold or bacteria growth is really easy. You should clean and descale your Keurig once every three to six months. However, if you use your machine more frequently, you should clean it once per month.

You can use a descale solution or vinegar. Vinegar will get rid of bacteria and mold from the tubes and valves. If you’ve got extreme buildup you may have to run the clean cycle a few times.

In addition, you should clean the water reservoir with a soft damp cloth. While you may be tempted, you should never put a Keurig in the dishwasher. You shoulld only put dishwasher safe parts in the dishwasher.

If you have mold in your machine, you can also try a mixture of baking soda, vinegar, and water to run through the machine. After running the brew cycle a few times, you’ll want to run it a few more times with just fresh water.

Can Keurig make espresso?

The short answer is no. Unfortunately, there are a lot of things a Keurig can brew but espresso is not one of them. Authentic espresso needs a lot of pressure which is needed to produce ultra strong coffee. However, you can make delicious drip coffee or a macchiato.

The best way to make espresso at home is with a high quality espresso machine. This type of machine has the pressure necessary to extract liquid from the ground coffee beans to make an espresso. A Keurig can only produce a simple infusion.

Can you put milk in Keurig?

The beautiful thing about Keurig is its ability to make many different kinds of hot drinks and coffee. Each person can have their own flavor. One of the biggest misconceptions about this amazing coffee maker is its ability to make drinks made with milk.

Unfortunately, you cannot put milk in a Keurig. Your machine will not work properly if you use milk. If you add milk to your reservoir, it will stick and eventually spoil. You should only use bottled or filtered water with a Keurig.

Luckily, Keurig makes a K-Café machine that makes drinks with milk and even has froth functions.

Keurig Troubleshooting – Not Working

If your Keurig is not working, don’t worry. This is a very common complaint and very easy to fix.

The most common reason your Keurg stops working is usually because of the type of water you are using. You should only use bottled or filtered water with a Keurig. Tap water and well water contain a lot of minerals, specifically calcium. Calcium and other debris can build up in the water lines causing your machine not to work.

The best way to fix this problems is by following the steps below.

  1. If you suspect calcium buildup, descale your machine using vinegar and water. For best results, let your machine soak for a least thirty minutes.
  2. The second thing you can try is to clean the machine by flushing it with only water. Try this a few times.
  3. The third thing you can try is to run the machine as if you are making a cup of coffee, but do not use a K-cup.

If your machine is still not working, you may need to call the manufacturer to see about warranty options.


Keurig is known to make the perfect drip coffee. As with all technology, there is always going to be malfunctions and problems. However, with a little troubleshooting you should be able to fix your Keurig. With minimum effort, and a consistent cleaning routine, you can get delicious coffee and quality results. What your favorite drip? Comment below and let us know.