how to descale keurig supreme with vinegar

Descaling Keurig Supreme (Plus) with Vinegar: The Affordable Alternative

In the previous article, we discussed how to descale your K-Supreme with Keurig’s solution and mentioned the option of using vinegar as an alternative. Today, we’ll delve into the details. Descaling with vinegar is a proven method to eliminate mineral buildup and ensure your coffee brews at its finest.

In this concise guide, we’ll lead you through the steps, explore the time involved, make a comparison between vinegar and Keurig’s descaling solution, and troubleshoot potential issues after descaling. Let’s embark on your path to a cleaner, more flavorful cup of coffee!

Descaling Keurig K-Supreme & K-Supreme Plus with Vinegar

Materials Needed

  • Distilled white vinegar (64 fluid ounces)
  • Measuring cup
  • Fresh water

👇 The following descaling steps apply to Keurig K-Supreme K910 and K-Supreme Plus K920 Brewers.

Step 1: Prepare Your Keurig K Supreme

  • Make sure the Keurig machine is unplugged and that there are no K-Cups in it.
  • Remove any water filter if you have one.
  • Empty the water reservoir.
step1 Prepare Keurig K Supreme no k-cup

Step 2: Prepare the Vinegar-Water Solution

  • Fill a measuring cup with 14 ounces of distilled white vinegar.
  • Pour the vinegar into the water reservoir.
step2 fill measure cup 14 ounces white vinegar

Step 3: Enter Descaling Mode

  • To initiate the descaling process, turn off the power to the Keurig machine.
  • Simultaneously press and hold the 8-ounce and 12-ounce buttons for 3 seconds until both the K and descale lights illuminate.
  • Press the K button to start the descaling process.
step3 press 8-ounce 12-ounce buttons 3 seconds

Step 4: Descaling Cycle

  • The machine will run approximately 14 ounces of the vinegar through the system.
  • After the cycle is complete, pour the hot liquid into the sink.
  • Repeat this process until the low water light comes on, typically requiring two cycles.

Step 5: Rinsing

  • Empty and rinse the water reservoir thoroughly.
  • Fill the reservoir with fresh water up to the max fill line.
  • Press the K button to initiate the rinsing process.
  • Pour the hot water from the rinse into the sink.
  • Repeat the rinsing process until the DESCALE notification turns off, usually requiring several cycles.
  • Once rinsed thoroughly, your Keurig K Supreme is ready for use.
Step5 fresh water Rinsing

How Long Does It Take?

The total time required can vary slightly based on your machine’s specific model and the thoroughness of your rinsing steps, but here’s a general idea of what to expect.

  1. Preparation: Preparing your machine by emptying it of water, K-Cups, and any filters usually takes just a couple of minutes.
  2. Descaling Process: The actual descaling process, which involves running the vinegar and water mixture through your machine, typically takes around 15 to 20 minutes. During this time, your machine heats up the solution and circulates it to dissolve mineral buildup.
  3. Rinsing: Rinsing the machine with fresh water is the step that can add a bit more time. Expect to spend an additional 10 to 15 minutes to ensure that all traces of vinegar are removed.
  4. Additional Rinsing (Optional): If you want to eliminate any lingering vinegar smell or taste, you can perform extra rinses, which can take another 5 to 10 minutes.

So, in total, descaling your Keurig K-Supreme with vinegar can be completed in roughly 30 to 45 minutes, including preparation and optional additional rinsing. This process might be slightly longer or shorter depending on your machine’s specific model and your efficiency in performing each step.

Vinegar vs. Keurig Descaling Solution: Making the Choice

Descaling your Keurig K-Supreme or K-Supreme Plus is a crucial maintenance task to keep your coffee maker performing at its best. While both white vinegar and Keurig’s official descaling solution can get the job done, they come with their own set of benefits and considerations. Let’s dive into the pros and cons of each to help you make an informed choice.

White Vinegar – The Budget-Friendly Champion


Cost-Effective: Perhaps the most significant advantage of using white vinegar is its affordability. A bottle of distilled white vinegar, which is typically used for descaling, costs just a fraction of the price of Keurig’s descaling solution.

Effective Scaling Remover: White vinegar is a powerful descaling agent. Its acidity effectively dissolves mineral buildup and scaling inside your coffee maker, helping to maintain optimal brewing performance.

Readily Available: White vinegar is a household staple for many, making it an easily accessible descaling option. You likely have a bottle sitting in your pantry right now.


Odor: One notable downside of using white vinegar is the strong vinegar odor it can leave behind. This scent might linger in your coffee maker and, occasionally, affect the taste and aroma of your coffee.

Additional Rinsing: To completely eliminate the vinegar smell and taste, you might need to perform extra rinses, adding a bit of extra time to the descaling process.

Keurig Descaling Solution – Convenience with a Cost


Convenience: Keurig’s descaling solution is designed to be convenient to use. It comes pre-measured, eliminating the need for mixing precise vinegar-to-water ratios.

Odorless: Unlike vinegar, Keurig’s descaling solution doesn’t leave any residual smell or taste, ensuring that your coffee retains its intended flavor.

Designed for Keurig Machines: Keurig’s descaling solution is specifically formulated for use in Keurig machines, ensuring compatibility and effectiveness.


Cost: The primary drawback of Keurig’s descaling solution is its cost. It is significantly more expensive than a bottle of white vinegar, which can be a deterrent for budget-conscious consumers.

Chemical Ingredients: Some users may prefer a natural descaling agent like vinegar over a solution with chemical ingredients.

As you can see, both white vinegar and Keurig’s descaling solution have their merits. White vinegar wins on the cost front and its effectiveness in removing scaling. However, it does come with the trade-off of a strong vinegar odor. On the other hand, Keurig’s descaling solution offers convenience and odorless descaling but at a higher price point.

Ultimately, the choice between the two comes down to your preferences and priorities. If budget is a significant factor, white vinegar is a practical choice. If you value convenience and an odor-free descaling process, Keurig’s solution might be worth the investment. Regardless of your choice, regular descaling will ensure your Keurig K-Supreme consistently delivers delicious cups of coffee.

Possible Issues After Descaling K-Supreme with Vinegar

While descaling your Keurig K-Supreme with vinegar is an effective and cost-efficient method, it’s essential to be aware of some potential issues that might arise during or after the process. Here are a few common concerns and how to address them:

1. Lingering Vinegar Smell: As previously mentioned, a downside of utilizing vinegar for descaling is the potent vinegar aroma that may persist in your coffee maker. If you encounter this issue post-descaling, you can alleviate it by conducting several extra rinse cycles with fresh water. This should effectively eliminate any lingering vinegar scent.

2. Taste Residue: Sometimes, after descaling with vinegar, you may detect a faint taste of vinegar in your first cup of coffee. To resolve this, run a few water-only brew cycles to ensure that any residual vinegar is completely flushed out of the system. Your subsequent cups should taste just like they used to.

3. Residue Buildup: While vinegar is effective at removing scale deposits, it can leave behind mineral residue. If you see any white or powdery deposits in your coffee maker after descaling, simply wipe them away with a soft cloth or sponge. Regular cleaning can prevent the buildup of such residues.

4. Incomplete Descaling: In rare cases, the descaling process with vinegar may not fully resolve scaling issues. If you notice that your Keurig K-Supreme still experiences slow brewing or other problems after descaling, you may want to consider repeating the process or trying a different descaling solution.

Final Words

To sum it up, descaling your Keurig K-Supreme with vinegar is a smart and budget-friendly approach to keeping your coffee at its best. With just a little effort and the correct method, you’re on your way to savoring consistently fresh and delicious brews.

💡 More Descaling guides on Different Keurig Modes:
👉 How to descale keurig slim?
👉 How to descale keurig slim with vinegar?
👉 How to descale keurig mini?
👉 How to descale keurig duo?
👉 How to descale keurig express & K-iced?
👉 How to descale keurig elite?
👉 Can you descale a keurig with vinegar?

Scroll to Top