If you live in an area that has hard water like I do, fighting the ugly, residual buildup is a constant battle. The white scale left behind by hard water is a harmless mixture of mineral deposits consisting primarily of calcium and magnesium. While the scale is harmless to humans, it is unsightly and does clog up tiny water openings within appliances such as an automatic drip coffee maker (tea makers too). Hard water deposits are easy to remove from teakettles and coffee makers, here’s the tricks that work for me –
How to Remove Deposits from Teakettle
Pour equals amounts of water and white vinegar into teakettle, place on the stove top on high heat and bring to a boil. Turn heat off and allow teakettle to sit for a few hours, overnight if possible. Pour out water and vinegar mixture. Repeat process until all white scale hard water deposits have been removed. To prevent the hard water buildup from returning, follow this removal procedure once per week, especially if the teakettle is used on a daily basis.
How To Remove Buildup from Coffee Maker
Hard water buildup inside an automatic drip coffee maker (or iced tea maker) will slow the drip flow and affect the flavor of freshly brewed coffee (or tea). To remove the hard water buildup, fill the water reservoir on the coffeemaker with half water and half white vinegar. Turn the coffeemaker on and let it drip till it reaches the halfway point in the drip cycle, then turn the coffee maker off. Let the water and vinegar mixture sit for one hour, turn the coffeemaker back on so the drip cycle will finish.
Pour water and vinegar mixture out of carafe and wash with mild dishwashing liquid, rinse well, then refill with clean water and pour into coffeemaker. Turn the coffeemaker on and let it run through several cycles, using clean water with each cycle, to thoroughly rinse out all traces of vinegar and hard water scale. Repeat this process weekly to prevent hard water deposit buildup in a coffeemaker that is used daily. Monthly cleaning should prevent hard water buildup in coffeemakers or drip tea makers that are used less frequently.
Vinegar is a disinfecting cleaner and deodorizer, when removing hard water deposits in a coffeemaker or teakettle, the scent of vinegar deodorizes the air. Cooking odors like fish and onions are zapped right out of the kitchen air. When the vinegar and water mixture is poured down the kitchen sink, the sink surface and drain is disinfected and deodorized too.