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A Guide to How Coffee Makers Work
Every morning, without even thinking twice, millions of people around the world have their first cup of coffee. Coffee has become a part of our way of life, and using the coffee maker has become second nature for many people. In fact, many will tell you that not only do they enjoy their morning coffee, they're actually dependent on it to start the day.
Your morning routine most likely starts out the same as everyone else's - make the coffee and get the paper (or check the news online along with your email if you're more high-tech). But what exactly happens after adding the coffee and water into your coffee maker? Coffee machines are no great mystery, but they're still an unknown for many people. Typically, no one bothers to learn more than the simple steps required to get a great cup of coffee. Read on if you're curious to know more about exactly how your drip coffeemaker works every morning, and how it's able to make such a quick cup of coffee.
Drip Coffee Makers
Your basic coffee maker, drip coffee makers are a staple home appliance across the globe. Automatic drip coffeemakers are the most popular coffee makers in the world, in fact. The modern drip coffee maker is really a simple device, and hasn't changed all that much over the past 30 years.
All drip coffee makers consist of:
The bottom of the coffee maker is home to the coffee machine's electrical equipment. This is also home to the heating element, which is typically composed of an aluminum extrusion with two parts: a resistive heating element and a tube through which water can flow. Normally, the heating element is simply a coiled wire, similar to the filament you'd find in a light bulb or the heating coils in a toaster.
The Coffee Making Process
And now for the important part - making coffee! You know how to add grounds and a filter, and then fill the reservoir with water. But here's where the magic comes into play with coffee makers:
One of the biggest advantages of a simple drip coffee maker is that the machines are designed to make a large amount of coffee at one time. Normally, these coffee machines can make as many as 12 cups of coffee in a single cycle. Additionally, drip coffeemakers allow for you to plan ahead. Since the coffee making system is closed, you can add water and set up the machine the night before without worrying about the water or the coffee beans being contaminated overnight. This way, you're a simple button push away from a great cup of coffee in the morning.
With no real mechanical pump and almost no moving parts at all, drip coffee makers are almost as simple as French press pots, and just as reliable. Some coffee machines have more advanced features, including programmable timers and strength controllers. These coffee machines still utilize the same basic process, however, ensuring they remain reliable and virtually maintenance-free.
Potential Coffee Maker Problems
Despite how reliable coffee makers are today, there are still a few potential issues that can arise over their lifetime. Some of the most common problems that occur in coffee machines include: