If your machine is displaying a light on its top, then the time has come to descale your coffee. This light is just like a warning that the machine starts showing whenever it needs to be descaled. It usually happens when the sensors in the machine start sensing that the flow in the device is not regular. The creation of a perfect coffee cup requires a little attention and the factors to be kept in mind such as measuring and grinding etc. if any of these factors are not considered then the quality of coffee may reduce. One such factor is the cleaning of the machine. If you are not cleaning your device regularly then you are not going to get a perfect cup of coffee. When a coffee machine is used for an extended period, the flow of the device may be hindered by the remaining particles stuck in the machine. That is why it is necessary to descale your machine to remove the limescale. We can say that professionally cleaning the machine is descaling. In simple words, descaling your device allows your machine to work with you for an extended period.
What is descaling?
Descaling is the process of removing the particles from the machine that are stuck in the machine due to its frequent use. You might have heard this term for heat exchangers and boilers as well. You can also descale your Nespresso machine by following a few steps. Scale is a thing that occurs that forms minerals inside the components of your Nespresso machine that get hot. The minerals created can get hard on your machine and can become difficult to remove with time. It can ultimately damage the components of the machine that have minerals stuck in them. Every Nespresso machine uses water in it. It does not matter if you are using filtered water or tap water. Each type of water has minerals in it. The minerals like lime are the minerals that are contaminated in the water. These minerals when used in a machine can stick to the parts that get hot whenever the machine is turned on.
The descaling process simply removes these minerals that are stuck inside your machine.
Why do I need to descale my Nespresso machine?
Descaling the machine regularly allows your machine to work properly and for a long period. Although lime and the other minerals in the water are non-toxic. They are not going to harm you in any way. But, it can affect the machine and the coffee quality as well.
When the machine starts heating itself during the brewing process, the lime and the other minerals in the water start forming a layer around the hot spots in the machine. It can also affect the temperature of the machine. As perfect temperature plays an important role in the manufacturing of coffee. It can ultimately harm the quality of your coffee.
A moderate temperature of water to get a perfect cup of coffee is 190 to 210 F degrees. If you do not have this temperature the coffee beans are not going to get extracted at the perfect temperature.
Similarly, not descaling your machine can also force your machine to work normally. If there is a layer imposed on the inner surfaces and the machine is going to force, it will surely damage your machine. It can also increase the amount of electricity used in the brewing process.
Not descaling your Nespresso machine can also cause an uneven flow of water. It can also damage the brewing system. It can cause clogging as well.
What is a Nespresso descaling solution?
Descaling a Nespresso machine requires a descaling solution. This descaling solution can remove the clots made in the inner portions of your machine due to lime or any other mineral from water.
Different types of descaling solutions are available in the market. But the most preferable option is the one made by Nespresso itself. This packet has two sachets of descaling solutions in it. You can flush the descaling solution in your machine to clean it.
Vinegar is considered to be one of the best descaling solutions in the market. But it has a drawback, vinegar breaks the limescale into pieces that can also be stuck in your machine. It becomes very difficult to filter out these particles stuck in the machine afterward.
If you still want vinegar as your descaling solution then use it with a water softener. It will slow the building of limescale in the machine.
You can also use a solution with phosphate and lactic acid. These solutions break the chunks into smaller pieces that can easily be filtered out with brewing.
Vinegar and lemon juice are also used as a descaling option. The citric acid and water in this solution remove the layer of limescale.
The most suitable option is a descaling solution from Nespresso itself. The instructions are mentioned on the back of the packet which makes it very easy to use. It is necessary to add half a liter of water to each sachet. You can also add lemon juice. It will enhance the descaling procedure.
How to descale my Nespresso machine using a descaling solution?
The descaling of a machine requires a few simple steps mentioned below:
1. Choose a descaling solution
The first and most important step is to select a suitable descaling solution. There are two options: either you can buy this descaling solution from Nespresso or you can make it at home as well. Vinegar and lemon juice are considered to be the most frequently used descaling solutions. Vinegar has a few drawbacks; its smell is one of them. Lemon juice is a good option but it needs to be in a good amount. The lemon juice can work very well without creating any problems.
2. Add the solution to your machine
The next step is to add the descaling solution to the machine. If you are using the Nespresso descaling solution then the suggested amount of water from Nespresso is around 0.5 liters to one sachet of descaling solution. A good amount of lemon juice can also be added to the water. It can help the descaling solution to break the imposed layer of limescale into smaller pieces and then brew it out of the machine very easily. Try not to exceed this amount of water. Most of the Nespresso water tanks have a larger capacity but you do not have to exceed this amount because you do not have to dilute the descaler too far.
Adding the solution is an easy process. First of all, take the water tank out of the Nespresso machine. Fill it with water and the descaling solution. Now, place the water tank back in its position. Fit it properly. Place a container under the drip tray of the machine. Make sure that the container has enough capacity to contain the whole water and descaling solution as well.
You can also use multiple containers, if one is filled you can use the other one. As the machine starts the water and descaling solution bursts around the machine and finally drips over in the container under the drip tray.
3. Turn on the descaling mode
The next step is to switch your machine to the descaling mode. Check the machine thoroughly if there is any pod left in the pod container of the machine take it out. Then close the lid of the pod container. Different models have different methods to switch to the descaling mode. Some of the machines have a physical button on to convert into descaling mode.
For other models such as Vertuo Plus, you have to hold the power button for a few seconds. The manual to convert your machine is available on the Nespresso official website. For example, if you own a Vertuo Plus model. You have to hold the power button and then the top of the lever for three seconds. Now, press down the lever.
In the case of Nespresso Pixie, you have to hold both the espresso and lungo buttons for a few seconds. The light will start blinking in the machine.
The next thing you need to do is to let the machine flow this liquid around the machine. For the Nespresso Vertuo Plus you need to press the only button it has on its menu. Similarly, for the Pixie press the Lungo button. This will start running the fluids in your machines and let the water drip out until the tank is empty.
4. Run cycles with clean water
The next step is to run the cycles with clean water. It is preferable to use cold water. Make sure that the container placed under the drip tray is large enough to hold the water. If you do not have a larger container you can use two containers as well by pressing the pause button to stop the dispensing of water in the machine.
For a normal Nespresso machine, you have to rinse the clean water in the machine twice. You have to fill the water container of the machine with fresh cold water. The next step is to press the button to start the flushing of water in the machine. You have to repeat the whole process twice.
In the case of Nespresso Vertuo, you have a larger water tank. It can work if you only rinse the machine.
5. Turn off the descaling mode
After the descaling is complete, the last step is to turn off the descaling mode of the machine. This process is usually the same as you have done to switch the machine to the descaling mode. The buttons are usually the same in both cases.
For the Vertuo Plus Nespresso machine pull down the lever and press the power button for three seconds. Similarly, for the Nespresso Pixie press the espresso and the lungo buttons together for three seconds. You can also take help from the manual provided with the machine to see a step-by-step pictorial work.
Once you have taken your machine out of the descaling mode. You can brew your coffee, you can add the coffee pods to the pod container. Brew the coffee as normal and enjoy it as usual until your machine starts showing the descaling warning on the display.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I need to dilute the descaling agent?
Yes, it is necessary to dilute the descaling agent. 17 ounces of water is required to dilute the descaling solution. 17 ounces of water is also required for the flushing of the water all over the machine.
What buttons do I need to press to descale a Nespresso machine?
Different models have different buttons to start the descaling. For a normal Nespresso machine, you just need to press the power button for a few seconds to start the descaling process.
How to naturally descale my Nespresso machine?
To descale a Nespresso machine naturally. You can use a vinegar solution or lemon juice with a suitable amount of water. You can also use lemon juice with a descaling solution from Nespresso.
How long does it take to descale my Nespresso machine?
Different models have different descaling times. Most of the time, the average time to descale the machines is 15 to 20 minutes.
Where do I need to insert the descaling tablet in my Nespresso machine?
The descaling tablet is inserted into the water tank of the Nespresso machine with a suitable amount of water in it. The descaling solution from Nespresso has two sachets in it.
How much descaling solution do I need to descale my Nespresso machine?
Different models of Nespresso machines have different descaling solutions in them. Usually, a half liter of water is needed with a descaling solution.
Do I need to mix the descaler with water?
Yes, it needs to mix the water with a descaler. The descaling process needs to rinse the water thoroughly in the machine.
How much water do I need to add to the descaler?
Usually, the suitable amount of water used with the descaler is half a liter of water. 17 ounces of water is required to dilute the descaling solution. 17 ounces of water is also required for the flushing of the water all over the machine.
Does Nespresso taste better after descaling?
Yes, we can say that Nespresso tastes better after the descaling because all the limescale is removed from the machine. The machine will start working well and provide a good coffee.
How often should I descale my Nespresso machine?
It is preferred to descale your Nespresso machine after every three months. It is also necessary to descale your machine after using 300 capsules.
What if I don’t descale my Nespresso machine?
The machine will stop working well. The limescale will impose on the inner parts of the machine and it will reduce the quality of the machine.
What is Nespresso descaling mode?
Nespresso machines come with a built-in descaling mode that helps the machine to be descaled very quickly and efficiently. Different machines have different methods to switch to the descaling mode.
Is there any difference between cleaning and descaling my Nespresso machine?
The cleaning of the machine in a professional way is the descaling of the machine. The descaling requires the descaling solutions while the cleaning can be done with any soft cloth and water.