Drip coffee makers are one of the most commonly used style of brewing coffee. These machines are the most popular means of brewing coffee because of their simplicity, ease of use and hands-free design.
Drip coffee makers are also usually very resistant, since the heating element is made of durable metal that stays functional for a long period of time. The machines also have water reservoirs so as to ensure that you never have to worry about refilling.
Drip coffeemakers have another advantage over other methods like the pour-over: The water is always evenly distributed through the spray head. This ensures that the coffee drinking experience is consistent, and utilizes the most of your coffee grounds.
Drip coffee makers have been around since the 20th century, and there have been significant advances in the technology that is used. The conductive heating plate has been improved and can now heat water in a few seconds. Some machines also come with a permanent filter that ensures that you never have to replace the filter.
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What is a drip coffee maker, and how does it work?
Drip coffee is a method of making coffee allowing the water flow from the reservoir mounted on top through the filter and coffee ground placed below the reservoir, and drip into the coffee pot until the water in the top reservoir is empty.
Drip Coffee Makers use a simple, yet effective way of brewing coffee. When water is added into the reservoir, it is immediately balanced out with the tubing to ensure that the water stays at a fixed level.
And, the heating plate, which is connected to the tubing, heats up the water rapidly and brings it to a boil. The heating plate also heats the carafe plate to ensure that it is warm. The heating plate maintains the temperature using a sensor.
The boiling water then bubbles through the tubing, and into the spray head. The spray head then distributes the water evenly through the grounds, which are placed in a filter. The coffee then drips (hence the name) through the filter and into the carafe, and is ready to serve hot and fresh!
Advantages and Disadvantages of drip coffee maker
There are numerous advantages to using a drip coffee maker. In fact, the advantages far outweigh the disadvantages, which is precisely why they are the most popular and commonly used ways to brew coffee.
Advantages of Drip Coffee Maker
1. Quick brew time: These coffee makers can make coffee in less than 5 minutes. This is much faster, and hassle free when compared with other methods of brewing coffee. Since the machines work on electricity, water heats up in no time and sets the machine to brew.
2. Adjustability: Since the amount of grounds that are put into the machine can be adjusted, the strength of the coffee is entirely in your hands. Some coffeemakers also offer a strength control function, which lets you have some amount of control over the strength of the coffee.
3. Coffee stays hot and fresh: As mentioned before, the heating plate heats up the carafe. So in case you leave out the coffee for a while, it stays hot and fresh. This is especially great for office spaces since a batch of coffee can be brewed and kept in the machine for a number of people to use.
Disadvantages of Drip Coffee Maker
1. Lesser control: Although the machine offers significant adjustability, it is not absolute. Other brew methods like pour-over usually offer a large amount of control. This control is not available on drip machines.
Top 10 Best Drip Coffee Makers
Considering all the above mentioned factors, let’s look at the top 10 best drip coffee makers!
10. Braun KF7150BK Brew Sense coffee maker
Braun is renowned for their drip coffee makers. They are affordable and brew a mean cup of coffee. Their design is quite innovative, and looks great on any kitchen shelf. That is why they are one of the most popular home brew machines.
They are usually compact and attractive to look at.The KF7150BK Drip coffee maker is no exception. It has an attractive design, and comes with one of the best looking LCD displays on the market.
The display is large and has a 24 hr clock, which lets you brew coffee with precision. It also has strength and temperature controls, giving you a reasonable amount of adjustability. It also comes with a 1-4 cup brew option, which gives you ample quantity that goes straight into the carafe.
- Strength control: Strength control is one of the most essential features on any coffee maker. It lets you control the strength to your liking, and comes with a bold and regular setting.
- Programmable clock: The programmable clock lets you wake up to a freshly brewed coffee that fits right into your daily routine.
- Condensation collection: This machine features a small ledge at the back of the machine, which collects all of the steam and condensation that may make a mess of your kitchen shelf. This eliminates the need to clean up after a brew.
- Large display and control panel: The large display is beautifully engineered. The control panel is also very easy to use, and has preset buttons that are very clicky.
- Unique Carafe: The carafe comes with a unique lid that keeps air out of the coffee, ensuring that the flavors remain intact.
This drip coffee maker is all-purpose and programmable. However, this is definitely best used in a home setting, given that it is designed for a kitchen. It also has a few issues with maintaining the temperature, but is not too common. Therefore, it is a great machine given the extremely reasonable price, and is a great entry-level product.
9. Cuisinart DCC-3200P1
Cuisinart is known for their range of home appliances, including blenders, coffeemakers and grinders. They are innovators in the field of coffeemakers, and have introduced technological trends that have been adopted in the industry. The DCC-3200 is one of their most popular drip coffee makers because it is affordable, attractive and makes bold coffee.
This drip coffee machine has a great set of features, including strength control and auto-off. It is stylish and has a timeless look, and comes in a range of colors that are quite attractive. Given that it is of a reasonable price, its list of features is quite impressive, and rivals some industry grade coffeemakers.
- Adjustable keep-warm temperature: This machine lets you adjust the temperature of the carafe, which offers you a lot of control on the temperature of your coffee even after a few hours.
- Programmable: This machine is programmable with a 24hr clock, which lets you set a timer for your everyday brew.
- 14 cup glass carafe: The carafe is quite large, and can hold upto 14 cups, making it ideal for large brews.
- Permanent gold-tone filter: The permanent filter is reusable and makes brewing much easier.
- Minimalistic control panel: The control panel is easy to use and very ergonomic. It has an attractive look that makes the machine very easy to use.
- Auto off: The DCC-3200 comes with the auto off features, which ensures you save on power.
This coffee maker is perfect for home and office use. The only drawback being the size. It is a relatively larger machine, but is definitely one of the best in its class. Considering the price and the features, this machine is definitely a contender for the best machines in the range.
8. Black+Decker 12 cup programmable coffeemaker
Black+Decker is a household name and makes a range of home appliances. They are trusted all over the world, and deliver durability and consistency with all their products. This drip coffee machine is one of the most bought machines because of the robust set of features that comes with an unbelievably low price.
This Black and Decker coffee maker comes with quick touch programming, which lets you program your machine much more easily than other machines on the market. It also lets you sop. The machine mid brew so you can sneak a cup of coffee on those really busy days. It uses very less power, making it eco friendly.
- Quick touch programming: Programming on this machine is very simple and can be done very quickly.
- Auto off: This machine has a 2 hr auto off feature which ensures that you save maximum power.
- Carafe: the carafe remains hot for over an hour after brew through the keep-warm feature.
- Sneak a cup: the machine lets you sneak a cup of coffee mid-brew, which is great for hurried mornings.
- Water window: The water level is visible at the front of the machine, which eliminates any confusion regarding the level of water in the machine.
This coffee maker is definitely one of the best in the range, simply because of the low price range and the features. The machine comes with features available on high end machines, and yet is sold for a very reasonable price. It can be used in offices or homes, and makes a great addition to your coffee inventory.
7. Hamilton Beach 12 cup coffee maker
The Hamilton brand name is associated with blenders and other home appliances. However, they also make some of the best coffeemakers, that are multi-purpose and extremely versatile. This drip coffee maker is one of the best in Hamilton’s range of coffee makers, and is definitely worth the price
This coffee machine comes with a good set of features, including auto off and a visible water chamber. The machine also lets you brew iced coffee, which is always a great addition to any coffeemaker. It also has a dispense bar that dispenses coffee one cup at a time.
- Large brew capacity: this machine brews upto 12 cups of coffee at a time, which is great for large brews in offices or homes. The coffee is stored in an internal tank, which eliminates the need for a carafe.
- Dispense bar: the dispense bar lets you dispense one cup of coffee at a time. This bar can be pressed with your cup, making it a one-hand operation.
- Removable water tank: the water tank can be removed and filled very easily. This also makes cleaning very easy.
- Internal tank: the internal tank keeps the coffee hot for over 4 hours, which is great for workspaces.
This drip coffee maker is definitely one of the best out there, and has a good set of features that are quite unique. The internal coffee holder ensures that the coffee stays piping hot, and the 12 cup brew capacity is remarkable. It is especially great for office or workspaces for these very reasons.
6. Cuisinart CPO-850 coffeemaker
Cuisinart makes a recurring appearance on this list simply because of the beautiful design, durability and quality of brew that is associated with their coffeemakers.
This drip coffee maker is one of Cuisinart’s best innovations, and has been certified by the Specialty Coffee Association of America’s technical requirements. This easily certifies this machine as one of the best in its class.
This machine makes one of the fastest cups of coffee, and also it is one of the most attractive looking coffeemakers and relies on minimalism.
- Temperature control: the machine lets you brew coffee at hot and extra hot settings, which adds a point on customizability.
- Strength control: The CPO-850 also lets you control the strength of the coffee to your liking, with three settings: mild, medium and bold.
- 8 cup carafe: This coffeemaker has a 8 cup carafe which is more than sufficient to brew for a large number of cups.
- Charcoal water filter: The charcoal filter ensures that any flavor of water that may interfere with the coffee is eliminated completely. It also makes sure that the water is purified.
- Brew Pause: the brew pause feature lets you stop the machine mid brew and sneak a cup of coffee.
- Auto off: the auto off feature ensures that the machine turns off automatically after 2 hours, which saves on electricity.
This drip coffee maker does almost everything right, and delivers industry grade taste and quality. The only problem is the price. This machine is priced quite high, given that it has the SCAA certification of quality. It is great for cafes, homes and office spaces as it has a quick brew time and a large capacity.
5. Zojirushi EC-DAC50 Zutto
Zojirushi brand is lesser known for its coffee makers, but still delivers a great brewing experience. This drip cofee machine has a good set of features, and is quite compact. It is a great personal machine, and has made a lot of innovations to ensure portability.
The water tank can be removed and holds a decent amount of water. It has a cone-type filter which is reusable and of great quality. It also comes with a measurement spoon. The filter cone is placed inside the decanter to make it more portable.
- 5 cup capacity: the machine can brew 5 cups of coffee at a time, which is a good serving size for a small group of people.
- Portability: the filter cone is placed within the decanter, which makes this machine that much more portable. It can also be disassembled very easily.
- Automatic keep warm: Zojirushi is known for their thermoses, and are quite good at maintaining hotness. This is proven through the keep warm function on this machine, which ensures that the coffee stays hot for a long time.
- Removable water chamber: the water chamber can be removed and cleaned with a dishwasher. It can hold upto 0.675 liters of water, which is great for a machine of this size.
This drip coffee maker is the most compact machine in the class, which makes it easy to be carried around. It can be used in a car, office, home, RV or basically any place with a power outlet. It is a good machine, albeit it lacks some important features that a coffee lover may not want to skip.
4. Posame 12 cup Coffeemaker
Posame drip coffee maker has all the features that one may come to expect from drip coffee machines. It can brew upto 12 cups at a time, and brews a good cup of coffee consistently. Condensation dripping from this machine is very less, which makes it very easy to clean and does not make much of a mess.
It is also quite compact and is programmable. The machine can be set to a 24 hr clock quite easily. It has only 4 buttons on it, and a minimalistic display, which makes it very easy to use. The quality of the coffee is also great.
- Programmable: The machine is programmable and can be set to a 24 hr clock so that you get your hot cup of coffee the first thing in the morning.
- 12 cup capacity: It can brew upto 12 cups of coffee, making it great for large brew sessions.
- Anti-drip function: The machine comes with an anti-drip function, which ensures dripping is kept to the minimum.
- Pause mid brew: the machine can be paused between a brewing cycle so that you can enjoy your cup of coffee without waiting.
This drip coffee machine is a good entry level coffee maker that gets the job done. For people who are looking for uncomplicated, easy to use machines, this is the one for you. Since it can brew a large quantity of coffee in a single brew, it is great for offices and gatherings.
3. Cuisinart DCC-1100BK
Cuisinart DCC-1100BK Drop coffee maker has exemplary features, and comes in at a fairly modest price. It comes with the trademark quality of Cuisinart, and brews a great cup of coffee every time. It has all the features like strength and temperature control, and does a remarkable job at finding a balance between versatility and consistency.
It comes in two colors: Black and White, both of which are extremely attractive and complement the design of the machine. It also has a very ergonomic design, with a grip and knuckle guard on the carafe that ensures stability. The design is truly timeless and looks beautiful on any shelf.
- 12 cup carafe: the carafe can hold 12 cups of coffee. It has a knuckle guard and grip, which makes it quite ergonomic and practical.
- Self-cleaning: the machine has a self-cleaning feature which ensures that the time spent on cleaning manually is minimal.
- Brew pause: The brew pause feature, which is standard with every Cuisinart machine, has carried over to this machine as well. You can pause mid brew to enjoy a fresh, hot cup of coffee.
- Charcoal filter: The charcoal filter removes any bad taste from the water and also purifies it. This ensures that you taste only the coffee and nothing else.
- Permanent filter: the permanent gold-tone filter is great, and does not require you to change it periodically.
This drip coffee maker offers some of the top tier features that one may expect form a more expensive coffee maker. It is truly a great machine, with a robust set of features. This machine is great for homes and offices, given that it brews large quantities of coffee in a relatively short amount of time.
2. KitchenAid KCM1208DG spiral showerhead drip coffee maker
KitchenAid drip coffee maker is yet another household name that is known for its quality and utility. KitchenAid has made innovation in technologies for blenders, coffeemakers, sandwich makers, toasters and a range of other home appliances. It is no surprise that the KCM1208DG is also a great machine.
This drip coffee machine has a great set of features, and has especially revolutionized the showerhead. It uses a spiral showerhead, which ensures that water is spread evenly across the bean which yields the optimum extraction of oils. It is very easy to use and features one of the most ergonomic designs on coffee machines.
- 29 hole spiral showerhead: The spiral showered ensures that coffee is extracted evenly, and that the water is perfectly infused with the oils from coffee beans.
- Visible water tank: The water tank on this coffeemaker is visible, and as a gauge which lets you see the precise amount of water.
- 2 brew buttons: this machine has 2 brew buttons, which lets you place the machine in different ways on the counter. This is a great ergonomic design.
- Drip free: the design of the carafe ensures that dripping is minimum.
- Programmable: this machine is programmable and can be set to a 24 hr clock so that you get your coffee the first thing in the morning.
- Self-clean: the machine has a self-clean feature which reduces the effort needed to clean it.
- Strength control: The coffeemaker can brew regular and bold coffee, and can be modified to your liking.
This is a great coffee machine that comes with a really good set of features. It has a large capacity, which means that it can be used for both home and office settings. The coffeemaker makes great coffee due to the spiral showerhead, and makes the maximum use of your coffee grounds.
1. Breville BDC450 Precision Brewer coffeemaker
Breville drip coffee makers are known for their grinders, espresso makers and coffeemakers. They specialize in everything that has to do with coffee, and are renowned for the quality of their products around the world. Most high end cafes use Breville coffeemakers and grinders because of their consistency and taste.
The BDC450 drip coffee maker does not disappoint. It comes with a steep and release valve that holds the water and coffee in contact for smaller brews. The machine also meets SCAA standards, which is an achievement in itself.
- Gold preset mode: this mode automatically adjusts strength and temperature of the brew to the optimum standards set by the SCAA to get a standard, consistent and quality experience.
- Comes with two filter: The machine comes with a flat bottom as well as a cone filter so that you can brew any volume of coffee the way you want it.
- Cold brew: It also has a cold brew setting for your Iced long black cravings.
- Strength control: the machine also has strength control, which lets you brew a strong cup of coffee.
- My brew: It lets you preset your brew preferences so as to eliminate time spent on programming and reprogramming the machine. It lets you adjust the flow rate, bloom time, temperature and strength settings.
- Temperature control: This machine lets you control the temperature with mathematical precision, and maintains it throughout the brew. This is done through the thermo coil heating system.
This machine is hands down, one of the best coffeemakers available on the market. The quality of coffee that it brews is unparalleled. The versatility offered on this machine is not seen in any of the other machines on this list, and is a must buy for all coffee lovers around the world. The only negative of this machine is its price. It is very expensive, but can be purchased for cheap on a sale.
Buyer's Guide : Critical factors to be considered to select the best drip coffee maker
1. Showerhead: The efficiency of the showerhead is one of the determining features of a drip coffeemaker. Since the extraction of the coffee oil gives coffee its flavor, a showerhead must spread water evenly across the coffee grinds. Failing to do this efficiently will result in a flat tasting coffee.
Some machines come with spiral showerheads, and there are some machines that have multiple showerheads. This factor is very important, and must be considered before purchase.
2. Programmability: Programmability of the machine is also a crucial factor that you must consider before purchase. Lower end machines usually do not have the option of programmability, which means that you must manually brew the coffee every morning. This can be a waste of time and an annoyance. Therefore, this factor is important and must be considered.
3. Filters: The type of filter must also be considered. Some filters can only hold a small amount of grinds, which can mean that the coffee may be weaker. Flat filters usually hold more grinds and make coffee much stronger. The flavor of the coffee depends on the filter capacity. You must also consider the type of filter. Reusable filters are most convenient as they do not need replacement after use.
4. Capacity: The capacity of the carafe, as well as the brewing capacity and the water tank capacity must be looked at before purchase. If the coffeemaker is to be used in an office space, always ensure that the machine has a high capacity ad can brew large amounts of coffee.
5. Price: The price of the coffee is most definitely one of the most important determinants of quality and taste, with a few exceptions. The price range must be considered, and must be appropriate to the purpose of purchase. Coffee aficionados may not mind spending $200 on a coffee machine. But if it is to be used in an office setting, it may not be the best option.
How to clean a drip coffee maker?
Step 1: Disassemble the machine. Use a damp cloth to wipe down the filter, chamber and the showerhead to remove any loose grounds.
Step 2: Fill the coffee maker’s water chamber with 1/3 vinegar and 2/3 of water.
Step 3: Start a brewing cycle. Ensure that the brewing cycle is fully completed and switch off the machine.
Step 4: Wash the chamber with lukewarm water and soap. If the calcium deposits persist, follow the same procedure with a descaling solution instead of vinegar.
Step 5: Clean the carafe with water and soap and scrub till completely cleaned.
Drip coffee makers enable one of the easiest ways of brewing a barista style coffee. These machines are automatic, and therefore require minimum effort whilst giving ample control to the user. They are also extremely quick when compared with other brewing methods. This makes drip coffee makers one of the best ways of making coffee.