Keurig coffee made using stale water that has been in the brewer for too long tastes awful. What’s more, such water can leak out and cause damage during transport. That’s why it’s important to know how to drain your Keurig brewer for storage and transportation.
Can you drain all the water out of a Keurig?
It’s possible to drain all the water out of a Keurig, even though these single-serve coffee machines don’t come with a drain plug. Draining helps to prevent limescale buildup, which happens faster when you leave water inside the Keurig water reservoir for too long.
What’s more, water left inside the Keurig can freeze and cause damage to the coffee machine. Standing water inside the internal water tank and tubing can also encourage the growth of mold and bacteria. Finally, residual water from the inner tank can leak out and cause damage to other items during transportation.
How to empty a Keurig
To completely empty a Keurig unit, you need to disassemble the brewer unit. The instruments that you’ll need for this task include a flat-head screwdriver, syringe/straw, and a needle-nose pair of pliers. Take note, though, that there are some Keurig models that can be easily drained without the need for disassembly.
Empty the Keurig via the side or bottom
Go through the user manual
The goal is to access and drain the inner, hot water tank. However, this component is usually difficult to access and different Keurig models have different designs. You should, therefore, start by going through the user guide to have an understanding of the location of the different components that you need to disassemble to access the internal tank.
Note: Knowing where the different parts are located is important as you don’t want to cause damage to the brewer by doing the wrong thing.
Let the brewer cool down
Before you start disassembling your Keurig, you need to unplug it from the electrical outlet and give it 30 minutes to cool down. Failure to do so can lead to a scalding accident due to the water inside the internal tank still being hot.
Disconnect the internal drain hose
First, you need to access and detach the internal drain tube and disconnect it. Your manual will let you know where this component is located. Depending on the location, you’ll need to either unscrew the side panel or bottom panel to access the drain hose. Use a flat head screwdriver to unfasten the screws securing the panel in position.
Once you can see the white, plastic drain pipe, pull out its fitting to disconnect it. In some Keurig versions, the drain tube will be affixed to a cable, which you’ll have to cut with a knife. Ensure you have a replacement cable tie if this is the case, as you’ll need to reconnect the internal drain hose later on.
Drain the water
With the drainpipe now disconnected, direct the open end towards a cup to collect the water that’s coming out. This stage takes some time, but eventually, all the water will be drained out of the brewer.
Reconnect the drain hose/reattach the panel
Once done, reinsert the hose back into its fitting. Alternatively, use a cable to tie it into place if you’d cut one earlier. Meanwhile, to reattach the side panel or bottom panel, you need to follow the manufacturer’s user manual.
Empty the Keurig via the top
Another effective method of draining a Keurig coffee machine is by accessing the internal water reservoir via the top of the brewer, instead of disconnecting the drain hose that connects the internal pump to the external tank. Follow the steps below to completely empty your Keurig for storage using this method.
Detach the top of the Keurig
To access the internal tank, you need to remove the top of the Keurig brewer. Start by lifting the pod holder handle and unfasten the 2 screws that secure the brewer’s top to the machine using a flat head screwdriver. With the top now loose, pull it forward and upwards to slide it free from the Keurig unit.
Disconnect the silicone tubes
At this point, you should now be able to see the exposed inner tubing of the Keurig. Situate the two silicone tubes that connect to the top of the internal water reservoir (one of them is L-shaped). Then, unfasten the zip ties that secure them in place.
To loosen the zip ties, you can grasp them with a pair of needle-nose pliers and shake the loose. Alternatively, if you have replacement zip ties, you can simply cut them with a sharp knife and then disconnect the tubes.
Drain the internal tank
With the upper tubing disconnected, you can now drain the Keurig. Simply invert the Keurig and water will start draining out through the internal tank’s L-shaped opening. This method of draining a Keurig is rather slow, but you can speed it up by placing a thin straw over the open end of the disconnected tube. Doing so helps to improve airflow into the internal water reservoir, resulting in faster drainage.
Reconnect and reassemble all the parts
Once you’ve drained all the water out of the brewer, return it to an upright position and start to reattach and reassemble the parts that you’d removed earlier. Start by reconnecting the silicone tubes. To do this, wiggle the zip ties that you’d loosened to secure the tubing.
Meanwhile, if you had cut them, tie down the tubes using replacement zip ties. Finally, slide the brewer’s top back into position before screwing it tight to secure it in position.
Dismantle the Keurig 2.0
If you have a Keurig 2.0 and want to drain its internal tank by disassembly, follow the process detailed below:
i. Access the chrome ring located at the top back of the Keurig brewer by lifting the brewer’s handle. Unsnap the ring from the body to remove it. This can be done by simply pushing the five snaps in and up.
ii. Next, lower the brewer handle and place it in an inverted position. Proceed to unfasten the 6 screws at the bottom of the coffee machine. Doing so will enable you to detach the front and side panels.
iii. After sliding out the front panel, return the Keurig to an upright position. Then, unfasten the two screws on the top of the water tank side of the Keurig. Follow up by prying open the top collar using a prying tool.
iv. Next, take out the water intake assembly and disconnect it from the tubes connected to it.
v. Unscrew the bottom of the motherboard to remove the internal filter.
vi. Next, detach and slide out the water tank assembly by turning it around and unfastening the screw on the white plastic washer.
vii. Rotate the Keurig to its initial position and detach the filter located behind the motherboard. Once the filter is fully detached, drain it completely.
viii. Detach the tube at the top of the tank and the one leading from the pump assembly to the water reservoir. At this point, water will start to flow out. Use a syringe to expel any residual water.
ix. Once done, reassemble all the parts that you had dismantled.
How to drain a Keurig 2.0 without disassembly?
Keurig brewers are designed to brew only if the external cold water tank is filled up with water. Therefore, you can drain the internal tank by tricking the machine into thinking that the external reservoir is full. To do this, follow the steps outlined below:
i. First, detach the external water tank from the Keurig unit and empty it completely. Once done, reinsert the empty reservoir onto the Keurig brewer.
ii. Next, reach for the float at the bottom of the water reservoir and slide it up to the top of its track. This is a metal disk that automatically lets the brewer know when the cold water tank is empty and needs to be refilled. Therefore, by adjusting it to the top of the track, you’ll be tricking the Keurig into ‘thinking’ that the reservoir is full.
iii. With the float magnet n the full position, you can now start brewing to drain out water inside the internal hot water tank and tubing. Put a collecting cup underneath the exit spout and press the ‘brew’ button.
iv. Once all the water has drained out of the Keurig, the ‘prime’ signal will come on. This message lets you know that there’s no water left inside the coffee machine and the internal water tank is completely drained. If the ‘prime’ display isn’t activated, it means there’s still some water in the inner tank and you’ll need to repeat the drainage procedure starting from step (ii) above.
How to remove the water reservoir from Keurig?
To detach the cold water reservoir/external tank from your Keurig and empty it for storage, start by removing its lid off the top by pulling it. Then, lift the water tank upwards while simultaneously pushing to the right of the brewer. Once the reservoir comes out, pour the water into the sink.
Keurig.com: How do I drain and store my brewer?