Handy Buying Guide
When choosing a coffee maker, you should check if it has all the functions you require. This will vary from person to person, depending on his/her taste, and environment.
Home or Workplace?
Your surroundings come into play when you’re deciding on a brewer to buy for yourself, your family or for your office.
A large coffee machine with high capacity and K-Cup pod functionality could be great for the workplace, such as the Hamilton Beach FlexBrew. A shared apartment could use a double brewer, that lets you brew single cups as well as whole pots.
If you’re living alone or part of a small family, a small carafe, like the Motif Elements Coffee Brewer, would be a better investment. For large families, choose the simplest one so everyone in the family can use it.
Which Carafe Should You Get?
Though all the carafes listed on this list are made of stainless steel and double-walled, there are also glass carafes out there that may look more attractive to you.
Beware, though because these glass carafes are rarely successful in keeping your coffee hot for long periods of time. It’s something that comes handy when you brew a full pot.
Steel carafes, such as the BUNN CSB3T Speed Brew, are good at insulating. They’re particularly effective when you wash the inside with hot water before brewing.
What Type of Coffee Do You Like?
A brewer that can make specialty coffee like white macchiato, mocha, and lungo, is absolutely useless for someone who loves plain Americano. Similarly, someone who likes fancy coffee from coffee houses wouldn’t enjoy the experience of making just black coffee with their machine after investing a lump sum.
Therefore, we’d suggest you invest in the Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker if you’re into cafe-style brews. However, you can stick to something like the Zojirushi EC-YTC100XB for regular black coffee.
It’s essential, therefore, to know what kind of coffee you and your housemates enjoy, so everyone’s happy!
What Type of Brew Do You Like?
There’s a lot of options to choose from when it comes to the types of brews. From pour-overs, like the Breville BDC450 Precision Brewer to the best automatic drip coffee maker with thermal carafe like the Cuisinart DGB-650BC, coffee enthusiasts have varied opinions.
It’s all really subjective of course. Different methods give different aroma and flavor, some being mild others strong. Pick a coffee maker that is easy for you to use, so you know what to adjust when your coffee isn’t turning out the way you want it to.
Does It Have Proper Credentials?
The highest credential you can check for is the SCA – the Specialty Coffee Association. They have even provided a guideline, after various researches, on how to brew the perfect cuppa. With the temperature between 196º F and 205º F between 2 to 8 minutes allows for a delicious mug of coffee.
Thankfully, most of the thermal coffee makers on this list such as the Ninja Specialty CM407 Coffee Maker and the Breville BDC450 Precision Brewer follow their guidelines.
Does It Come With a Grinder?
If you’re into the fresh ground and brewed coffee, it’s a good idea to look for one that comes with a grinder, like the Capresso 465 CoffeeTeam TS. Though this can complicate the cleaning process a bit, companies have adapted to the situation and some provide tools to make things easier.
Freshly ground coffee has a unique flavor that many coffee lovers are fans of, therefore having a grinder built-in would make their lives delightful!
How Much Does It Cost?
Expense is quite an issue when it comes to coffee makers. The more functions it has, the pricier it gets, like the Ninja Specialty CM407 Coffee Maker. However, it’s often a good idea to invest in one that’s expensive.
This is because, with a coffee maker, it’s a long term commitment. People have gone up to 20 years using the same coffee machines, and I’m sure those brewers didn’t come cheap.
It takes money to make a device durable. Hence, usually, expensive machines are worth the expense.
FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)
We have assembled the most common questions asked by customers, so here they are!
01. How Long Does A Thermal Carafe Keep Coffee Hot?
Thermal carafes are an extremely useful device, especially for coffee makers. When you have a massive load of work or you are pulling an all-nighter, a hot cup of coffee needs to be ready for you.
Thermal carafes are super-efficient in these situations, as they can keep coffees hot for the longest hours. Even the lowest quality carafe can maintain a warm temperature for about 2 hours. The best ones out there can keep your coffee hot for up to 12!
02. Are Thermal Carafes Better Than Glass Carafes?
Thermal carafes are generally more expensive than glass carafes, but there’s a good reason behind it. Though they’re not as attractive and presentable as glass carafes, they allow several benefits that you’d miss out on if you decide to be economical.
It’s obvious that a thermal carafe is able to keep your coffee hot for much longer, as it’s built with an insulating material. A glass carafe requires a hot plate in order to achieve that. Thermal carafes also slow down oxidation and preserve the flavor of the coffee for longer periods.
03. Should I Get A Permanent Filter Or Paper Filters For My Coffee Maker?
Permanent filters can sometimes alter the taste of the coffee brewing through, depending on the material used to make it. Paper filters, on the other hand, add a very unique flavor to the brew. The coffee ground is filtered more thoroughly through paper filters, leaving no residue.
When it comes to eco-friendliness, the permanent filters are a better pick as they can be reused. Paper filters, though biodegradable, have to be disposed of after every use, increasing the effect of deforestation.
Paper filters make the cleaning process easier than when using a permanent filter, and they also come cheaper.
04. How Do I Clean A Thermal Coffee Maker?
This is one of the questions that come up frequently in these thermal coffee maker reviews. However, don’t be intimidated; it’s actually super easy!
So, the best way to clean a coffee maker is to run it without adding the coffee. Let us guide you step by step.
- First, you ensure that your coffee pot is empty. Remove any coffee residue that’s left with a brush.
- Next, you take 2 cups of cold water and add it to 1 cup of vinegar and mix. Basically, keep the ratio of the mixture 2:1 according to your coffee maker’s capacity.
- Then, pour this solution into the coffee brewer’s water reservoir.
- Turn on the coffee maker but don’t open the dispenser. Let the vinegar sit in the brewer for 15 to 20 mins, then let it pass through.
- Finally, get rid of the taste of vinegar by running water through the machine a couple of times.
And you’re good to go!
Now that you’ve seen the various styles and designs of coffee makers on our list, you’ll be able to make a knowledgeable and conscious decision.
It’s a good decision to look through these reviews before purchasing, because, let’s face it, it is a great investment. Especially if you’re getting one of the expensive ones!
We hope our buying guide helps you pick out the best one, whether it’s for your home or workplace. Till next time!