Coffee Makers, Maintenance & Cleaning Coffee Makers

Step-by-Step Guide: How to Descale Keurig Mini for Longevity

Written by

Erica Cervenkova

Coffee Holli Top Pick

If you’re a proud owner of a Keurig K-Mini, you’ll know it’s a fantastic single-brew coffee maker. But, like any machine, it needs some TLC to keep it running smoothly.


Descaling is a vital part of this care routine. It’s the process of removing mineral buildups, specifically calcium deposits or scale, that can accumulate over time.

So, let’s dive into how to descale your Keurig K-Mini efficiently.

Materials Needed

  • Descaling solution or vinegar and water.
  • A vessel for discarding the solution.
  • Purified or filtered water (not distilled).
  • Safety pin for cleaning the K-Cup Holder needle.

Step-by-Step Process to Descale Your Keurig MINI


Once you have everything necessary prepared, you can begin the step-by-step process of descaling your Keurig Mini brewer. Here’s what you need to do.

Step 1: Preparation for Descaling

Keurig Mini Preparation for Descaling Initial Setup

Your first step in this DIY descaling journey is ensuring you’re fully prepped. Don’t underestimate regular cleaning and descaling! 

It’s vital for your Keurig Mini’s life. Keurig recommends descaling your machine every three to six months


Aim for a ratio of three parts water to one part vinegar to prepare your vinegar and water solution.

Step 2: Starting the Descaling Process

Keurig Mini Pour Descaling Solution into Water Reservoir

It’s time to get started. You need to pour your descaling solution or vinegar water into the reservoir. Once that’s done, hit that power button to bring your machine back to life. 


Keurig Mini Activate the Function Button Start Descaling

Open and close the basket to activate the function button. Watch out for the indicator light – it’ll start blinking. Press K to kick off the descaling process.

Step 3: Running the Descaling Cycle

Keurig Mini Running the Descaling Cycle

After the descaling, you’ll want to follow up with a rinse cycle. Well, make those three rinse cycles, to be precise. 

Keep in mind:

You might want to use a Keurig rinse pod while doing this. The convenience of this could speed up the rinse process.

After this:

Toss out the spent descaling solution and fill the reservoir with fresh, purified, or filtered water.

Step 4: Completing the Process

Once the rinse cycle is complete, it’s time to work on the finishing touches

The inside of your K-Mini brewer should be clean now. However, if you notice any error indicators, you should troubleshoot the problem.

On the other hand:

If everything is working fine, feel free to take the safety pin you prepared beforehand and run it through the brew head needle. This should scrape out any debris stuck up there. 

Coffee Holli’s Pro Tips for Maintaining Your Keurig Machine

Descaling your Keurig brewer is one of the many ways to keep your brewer in tip-top shape. Here are a few more recommendations for maintaining your machine: 

Keurig Mini Cleaning the Machine

Rinse Cycle Recommendation:

  • I always run a water-only rinse cycle every few days. This is especially important if I don’t clean the pod holder after every use.
  • I’ve noticed that these rinse cycles prevent flavor crossover from one K-Cup to another, ensuring each cup of coffee tastes just as it should.

Cleaning the Top Needle:

  • I use a simple safety pin for this task. It works wonders in unclogging the needle and getting rid of any coffee grounds that might be stuck inside.
Keurig Mini Unclogging the Needle

It’s a small step but makes a big difference in maintaining a smooth brewing process.

Erica Cervenkova
Coffee Connoisseur, SCA Member

As a coffee connoisseur and member of the Specialty Coffee Association, I am dedicated to understanding the sustainability of coffee pods and the impact it has on the environment. My expertise lies in the realm of capsule coffee machines, from the likes of Keurig and Nespresso to other well-known US brands. I am passionate about sharing my knowledge and helping others make informed decisions about their coffee choices. Whether you're a coffee enthusiast or just looking for a new way to enjoy your morning cup, I'm here to help.


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