The pleasure of delicious coffee depends not only on a high-performance coffee machine, but also on a good coffee grinder, a valuable ‘helper’ that should not be underestimated. For the grinder to work properly and for a long time, regular maintenance is essential. In this article, we present you with some tips on how to clean your coffee grinder to the best of your ability and enjoy a perfect coffee every time.
Why is it important to clean the coffee grinder?
Regardless of whether you own a professional coffee grinder, a coffee grinder with a dosing unit, an automatic coffee grinder, an electric coffee grinder or an on-demand coffee grinder, cleaning the grinder is essential to ensure optimal coffee taste. Over time, oils and coffee grounds get stuck between the grinders: the grounds become stale and the oils can start to alter the taste of the coffee in the cup. In addition, residues from ground beans can reduce the grinding performance of the espresso grinder.
Regularly cleaning the hopper with a damp cloth will remove oily residues from the coffee beans. If the hopper is already very oily, you can also use soap. Finally, make sure that the clean hopper is dry before adding new coffee beans.
How to clean the grindstones of the coffee grinder
In addition to cleaning the coffee grinder with a special cleaning agent, it is important to thoroughly clean the grindstones and the grinding chamber. Older coffee can get caught between the teeth of the grindstones, in which case it is necessary to open the grinder and remove them, and also clean the grinding chamber.
- Clean the grindstones. To clean the grindstones, it is necessary to use a good brush with stiff bristles that can detach the grindstones from the cutting teeth. Brush the grindstones thoroughly to remove the accumulated coffee residue: you will be amazed at how much coffee residue has accumulated.
- Clean the grinding chamber. When removing the grinders for cleaning, it is the perfect opportunity to remove the coffee that has collected inside the grinding chamber. A first method to remove the coffee is to use a brush in combination with a vacuum cleaner. The brush can be used to remove the stuck grounds and suck them up with the hoover hose. Alternatively, a brush and some compressed air can be used to detach and blow the jammed grounds out of the chamber. Once everything is completely clean, you can reinstall the grindstones and reassemble the grinder.
What cleaning agent should be used for a coffee grinder?
Contrary to what you often read, rice grains and vinegar are not suitable for cleaning a coffee grinder. Grinding rice can damage disc and conical grinders, while the use of vinegar instead of descaler is highly inadvisable. Furthermore, not only are rice and vinegar not formulated to clean coffee equipment, but most manufacturers will void the warranty if you have used rice in your coffee grinder.
To ensure effective cleaning of your grinder, you must therefore invest in specific detergents.
Urnex cleaners are food-safe products for cleaning stand-alone grinders and super-automatic espresso machines. Made from cereals and grains, these special cleaners are designed to remove oils and coffee residues from grinders.
Simply remove the coffee from the grinder and set a medium grind. After placing the tablets in the bean hopper and grinding, the Grindz will remove the stale grounds and oils that have accumulated over time. Once finished, simply fill the hopper with coffee and operate the grinder until the Grindz powder residues are expelled from the grinding chamber.
Changing the coffee in the grinder
If you like to enjoy different types of coffee on a regular basis, we suggest you check that you have completely removed the last ground coffee before switching to a new blend.
Even if the bean hopper is empty, there is still coffee inside the grinder. This applies even if the grinder is running and nothing comes out. Coffee remains accumulated inside the grinding chamber, the chute and on the grinders themselves until new coffee is run through to replace it. Therefore, when you want to try a new coffee, it is always a good idea to run some through the grinder before brewing. Finally, we suggest adjusting the grind of the new coffee to ensure optimal extraction.
How often to clean the grinder?
The frequency with which to clean the grinder is influenced by several factors, including the frequency of use and the coffee beans used. The darker the coffee beans are (and therefore oily), the more often you need to clean the grinder, preferably once a week. As a rule of thumb, we recommend cleaning the grinder after about 15 kilograms of ground beans to ensure excellent coffee.
Just like an espresso machine, your grinder needs a bit of maintenance to always work at its best and allow you to enjoy delicious espresso coffee. If you have never cleaned your grinder, you now have all the right tips for doing so!