There has been a long-standing debate among coffee lovers whether hard water enhances the taste of coffee. While some argue that the magnesium and calcium ions in the hard water add to the flavor of the coffee, the others think it just makes the coffee bitter.
The debate will go on. However, no matter which side of the aisle you belong to, you must agree that hard water makes the cleaning of the coffee machine so much more difficult. People who live in an area with a hard water supply know the pain. You must buy the best coffee makers for hard water to make things easier.
The ions in the hard water build limescale deposits in the coffee machine. If you miss your descaling routine, the residue can harm the heating system of the coffee maker. As a result, the coffee from the machine will not be hot enough, and the coffee maker will fail to extract the optimal flavor from the beans. Besides, the residue can also clog the water pipe of the coffee machine. In short, it will ruin the taste of your coffee and, eventually, your coffee maker.
Here we have made a list of the seven best coffee makers for hard water available in the market. These coffee machines will help you in this struggle against hard water.
1. Mr. Coffee Easy Measure 12 Cup Programmable Coffee Maker
If you are looking for a fully automatic programmable coffee maker, this model can be a perfect choice for you. This coffee maker comes with a two-step advanced water filtration system. It removes the impurities and minerals to deliver better-tasting coffee.
Apart from this water filter, another feature that makes this coffee machine one of the best coffee makers for hard water is that cleaning it is super easy. You can easily disassemble the parts and put them in the dishwasher. Once you put the machine parts under running water or in a dishwasher, it washes out the residues. Reassembling the machine parts is pretty simple. It also has an automatic cleaning cycle. Besides, you can remove the water tank. So, cleaning becomes even easier.
This Mr. Coffee programmable coffee makers have a built-in permanent coffee filter, so there’s no need to buy paper filters. Just as the name suggests, it is easily programmable, so you can set the coffee machine in the night to get a fresh cup ready in the morning.
It makes up to 12 cups of coffee at a time. Adding to its impressive features is the smart auto-pause feature. Using this feature, you do not need to wait for the brewing cycle to complete to get your cup of coffee. You can just remove the pot and pour the coffee while the brewing is still on.
The machine shuts off automatically after four hours, and the timer tells you how long it’s been since the coffee was brewed. The coffee basket is large enough to hold the coffee grounds required to brew 12 cups. The blooming feature makes sure the coffee grounds are pre-soaked for 30 seconds before the brewing starts. This helps in optimizing the flavor of the coffee.
- Advanced 2-steps water filter reduces the hardness of water
- Easy cleaning with dishwasher-safe parts
- You can disassemble the parts easily
- Removable water reservoir
- Built-in coffee filter
- You cannot alter the warming cycle manually
- The replacement of the water filter is a bit expensive
2. Cuisinart DCC-1150bk Classic Thermal Programmable Coffee Maker
Cuisinart makes some of the best coffee machines for hard water. This classic thermal programmable coffee maker comes with a self-cleaning function. It uses a gold-tone permanent filter to ensure the natural oils from coffee beans sip through and make fresh and aromatic coffee.
Besides, it has a charcoal filter to effectively remove dust and debris from the water. The use of the charcoal filter is optional. If you use pre-filtered water or packaged water for your coffee, you can ditch it.
This Cuisinart coffee maker doesn’t have a pot heater. Instead, it has a double-walled insulated thermal carafe to keep your coffee hot for several minutes after brewing. The carafe can hold up to 10 cups of water. The coffee maker lets you brew smaller pots with its easy-to-adjust 1-4 cup settings.
It also has a brew-pause feature. That means you can pour your cup before the brewing has finished. The 60-second reset feature remembers the setting and where it was in the brewing process so that the final coffee will be as good as any other. The machine shuts off automatically once brewing is done.
If you are looking for a coffee maker that removes the odor and ions from your water before brewing coffee, Cuisinart DCC-1150BK is a good choice. It has a classic design with stainless steel accents that suits any kitchen interior. The quality and taste of the coffee it brews is worth its price.
- It comes with a charcoal water filter
- Self-cleaning function
- It comes with a gold-tone coffee filter
- You can pause the brewing
- Double-walled insulated thermal carafe that keeps the coffee warm
- The water reservoir is smaller
- The carafe is a bit clunky
3. Braun KF6050wh Brewsense Drip Coffee Maker
This coffee maker comes with a charcoal water filter that stops the residues from entering the carafe. It also helps in reducing the limescale deposits. Besides, you can customize the cleaning feature depending on the water hardness levels. It also shows you an illuminated warning sign to let you know when it’s time to descale. These two unique features help you determine the cleaning time and requirement.
You can easily program this machine with a 24-hour timer. So, you can set the coffee machine and leave it on its own. The coffee will be ready when you want. If you forget to shut it off, it has an auto-shutoff feature. However, remember to press the auto-off button while setting the time; otherwise, it will set itself to default two hours.
The coffee maker includes a gold-tone coffee filter. This filter uses a unique PureFlavor system to allow the oils to go into the pot and enhance the flavor. In addition, the coffee is brewed at optimal temperature and time to obtain maximum flavor from the coffee grounds. Its glass carafe is specially designed to lock the aroma and flavor of your brew.
Like the other coffee machines on the list, it also comes with an auto-pause feature, So, you can pour your cup before the cycle ends. The water level indicator lets you know the exact amount of water you need to add to brew your desired cups.
- It comes with a charcoal water filter
- Customizable cleaning feature
- Automatic descaling alert
- Uses the PureFlavor system to optimize the brewing time and temperature
- Glass carafe that locks the flavor and aroma of the brewed coffee
- Refilling the water tank can be a challenge as it opens 90 degree
- You lose all the settings if you keep it unplugged for more than 60 seconds
4. Nespresso Vertuoplus Coffee and Espresso Maker
Nespresso is a well-reputed brand that makes world-class espresso machines for the home kitchen. Their VertuoPlus Coffee and Espresso Maker is one of the best coffee makers for hard water that also makes espresso. You can make barista-graded coffee and espresso with this portable single-serve machine.
This Nespresso coffee maker is suitable for brewing with hard water partly because it has an auto descaling feature. This feature kicks in whenever there is excessive debris build-up inside the coffee maker. Therefore, you do not need to worry about cleaning the coffee machine frequently.
You can adjust the size for both coffee and espresso. It is suited for making coffee for different cup sizes ranging from 5 to 7.77 ounces. You can adjust the platform to different heights to fit in cups and travel mugs.
The Nespresso coffee maker water reservoir is large enough to hold up to 40oz of water. The tank is removable, and you can rotate it in three different positions.
It has an efficient heating technology that enables it to heat up within 15 seconds. In addition, its auto-shutoff feature shuts it off if it remains idle for nine minutes.
You can only use Vertuo capsules in this machine. The smart technology reads the barcodes of the pods and adjusts the brewing setting accordingly. You just need to insert the coffee pods; it will do the rest to deliver a perfect cup of coffee with authentic taste and flavor. The Centrifusion innovation technology that the machine uses makes perfect crema even for large mugs.
The machine comes with an automated capsule lid. You just need to touch the lever, and the capsule lid will open, dispose of the used capsules into the designated bin, and close. The used pods are recyclable through Nespresso’s recycling program.
- Simple one-touch use
- Auto descaling feature
- Makes perfect crema
- Reads the capsule barcode and brews accordingly
- Large and removable water tank
- Vertuo pods are expensive, and you cannot use other capsules
- Some may find the espresso and coffee from this machine a little cold
5. Chulux Single Serve Coffee Maker
The cleaning process is pretty simple. You just need to add water and vinegar and press the button. Furthermore, the filter basket and drip tray are removable and dishwasher safe. Its drip tray ensures that the coffee maker also keeps the brewing space clean.
This Chulux coffee maker can use both coffee grounds and coffee pods to brew café-like coffee. Most 1.0 and 2.0 coffee capsules are compatible. It takes between two to three minutes to brew a cup of coffee. A five ounces cup is brewed in under one minute. Considering the performance, it is as convenient as making instant coffee. However, you get a much better and aromatic coffee. The machine has an auto-shutoff feature that prevents overheating and reduces energy wastage.
The Chulux coffee maker is designed to deliver a fresh cup of coffee every time you brew. Almost all standard-size cups and large travel mugs fit in. You need to adjust the height by changing the position of the drip tray. Also, the coffee maker comes with a vacuum tumbler that keeps the coffee warm for up to four hours. You can use the tumbler to keep cold beverages as well.
The machine has a single-touch operation. As you press the button, the blue light goes on, and it continues to flash until the brewing is done.
Another great feature of this single-serve coffee machine is its various colors to fit any décor. Besides the basic black, you can get this coffee maker in six other colors, including red, blue, cyan, grey, green, and orange.
- Easy to clean feature
- Parts are dishwasher safe
- Simple one-touch operation
- Brews a cup of coffee within 3 minutes
- There is no measuring indicator on the water tank
- It can be a little noisier than expected
6. Hamilton Beach Front Fill 12 Cup Beach Programmable Coffee Maker
As soon as debris builds up, the machine asks you to activate the self-cleaning feature. The coffee maker doesn’t need you to clean it manually. It is compatible with the Hamilton Beach 80674R water filter. However, you will need to buy it separately.
With this machine, you can customize the brewing strength according to your taste. It makes up to 12 cups of coffee, but you can pause the brewing cycle to serve one or two cups before letting the process continue. It also has four brewing settings for a smaller serving.
You can set the time and strength hours before the next brewing cycle so that you get a fresh pot of coffee in the morning or after coming back from work. To conserve energy, the machine shuts off automatically after two hours.
The water tank and the swing-open brew basket are accessible from the front. It enables you to keep the machine anywhere in the kitchen and even inside a cabinet. It also has an easy-to-see water window for your convenience.
Its slim and compact design allows it to fit anywhere in the kitchen.
- Self-cleaning feature
- Cleaning alert
- Front-fill water reservoir
- Sleek and compact design
- Customize brew strength
- No integrated water filter
- No beep sound after brewing is done
7. Keurig K-Select Single-Serving Coffee Maker
Keurig K-Select Single Serving Coffee Maker comes with a water filter handle and a filter. It ensures the residues are removed from the water before brewing. The machine also reminds you when it’s time to descale it to keep the appliance free of debris.
With this coffee maker, you can brew multiple cup sizes. The drip tray is removable and accommodates tall travel mugs up to 7.4 inches. It also has a customizable coffee strength that allows you to enjoy your preference.
The control buttons are simple to use. You just need to insert the capsule and select the desired brew size. The coffee will be ready in minutes. It has an auto shut-off option, but you can override it if you want to keep it on all the time.
This coffee maker is compatible with any type of K-cups. Even the locally made unlicensed ones will work perfectly.
It also comes with a large removable water tank that holds up to 52 ounces of water. This means that you can brew up to five cups of coffee before refilling the water reservoir. The water tank is also removable and therefore easier to clean. It also reminds you when you need to refill the tank.
- It comes with a water filter
- Descaling reminder
- Has a strong brew option
- Compatible with any type of K-cups
- Large and removable water tank
- Water may drip sometimes
- Needs frequent descaling
How to Choose the Best Coffee Makers for Hard Water
If you use hard water to brew your beverage, you need to be extra careful while making your choice. Apart from the regular features offered by a typical coffee maker, you need to consider the following while looking for the best coffee makers for hard water.
You should never pour unfiltered water into your coffee machine if you are using hard water. The sediment build-up will be excessive, and the coffee maker will break down in no time.
As such, you should choose a coffee maker that comes with a high-quality water filter. This will help in reducing the limescale deposits significantly. If your coffee maker doesn’t have a water filter included, make sure you add a supplementary water purifier.
No matter how many times you filter your water before pouring it into the machine, some residue will still be there. Therefore, expect to clean your coffee maker more frequently than those using soft water. Thus, you should always go for a coffee maker that is easy to clean.
Look if it has a self-cleaning function. Coffee makers with self-cleaning are better suited to brewing with hard water.
Auto-Descaling or Cleaning Reminders
Limescale deposits often build up in internal components of the coffee maker that we cannot see. It is often difficult to say when it’s time to run the self-cleaning program. Some manufacturers have included the auto-descaling feature in their coffee makers to solve this problem.
When enough debris is deposited, the machine automatically goes to descaling mode. This is a very important feature for coffee makers using hard water. Even if the descaling function doesn’t kick in automatically, the machine should remind you to clean it.
Ease of Cleaning
Self-cleaning is often not enough to wash out all the residues. Hard water affects the other parts of the machine too. So, it is better if the pieces of the coffee maker are dishwasher safe. For this reason, removable water tanks and drip trays also work better.
For the best experience, ensure that reassembling the parts is not too complicated.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. How to clean a coffee maker from hard water?
You can use an acidic solution to clean the coffee maker from hard water residue. Make a vinegar or lime juice solution, put it in the chamber, and run the self-cleaning program.
If your coffee maker doesn’t have a self-cleaning feature, you can add the acidic solution to the water tank and brew it. Make sure you rinse the system with clean water before you brew coffee in it. Alternatively, you can also use commercially designed solutions made for descaling coffee makers.
2. Can I get coffee makers with a hard water filter?
No water filter can remove all the minerals from the water. The best you can do is to use a good-quality water filter to reduce the residue. Many coffee makers in the market today come with a water filter. However, for some, you have to buy the water filter separately.
There are many different types of water filters used on coffee machines. The most popular water filters used include the carbon and sediment filter. The former uses the porous surface of the activated carbon to trap additives such as chlorine that can ruin the taste of your coffee, while the latter traps any debris in the water.
Therefore, it is important to double-check if the coffee maker you are buying has a water filter or is compatible with external water filters.
3. Can hard water ruin my coffee maker?
If you do not clean your coffee maker regularly, mineral residues will keep piling up. The excessive mineral deposit can do irreversible damage to your coffee machine.
4. Does hard water affect the taste of coffee?
Yes, hard water adds taste to your coffee. The minerals in hard water get combined with the compounds in coffee. As a result, your coffee tastes different. Some may like the taste, but for others, it ruins the taste.
No coffee maker is immune to hard water. A good water filter and a regular cleaning routine can help you minimize the damage. While regular cleaning can reduce the damage, your coffee maker is still likely to fail. Therefore, you need to descale it frequently to get rid of the limescale deposits.
Even if you like the taste of the coffee made with hard water, you should never add the hard water directly into the machine. Always use a water filter to reduce the mineral content. The lifespan of a coffee maker is likely to be shorter when hard water is used. Be careful and maintain your cleaning routine.
Never ignore the warning or cleaning reminder. Replace the water filter frequently. Never compromise with the taste or flavor of the coffee. Enjoy your cup!