You'll need a new one every year or so...

Apr 26, 2010 (Updated Apr 27, 2010)
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:Great tasting coffee, attractive appearance, easy to use, thermal carafe.

Cons:Doesn't last long, even with fastidious cleaning.

The Bottom Line: It brewed an excellent cup of coffee, which it kept hot without burning for several hours. Some features were pointless, and the longest I had one last was 2 years.

.....I am about to throw away my 2nd Mr. Coffee 10-cup coffee maker!!!

I bought one of these impressive looking coffee makers about 3 years ago.  The main reasons I chose this particular coffee maker were the stainless steel thermal carafe, the 10 cup capacity, the generously sized reservoir filler opening (or whatever you want to call that!), the timer, the clean function and the water filter discs that make the coffee taste so much better and you really only need to replace them every 6 months or so! 

So, as I LOVE coffee so much, I wanted to have a reliable coffee maker that would also look nice on the counter since I use it twice a day.  I bought my Mr. Coffee from Target and paid around $59 for it. 

What's in the box?:

The coffee maker itself with a handy storage space in the back for the 4 ft power cord, the 10 cup stainless steel thermal carafe with the locking lid, and the water filter assembly that sits on top of the coffee filter basket.  Obviously the instructions manual too!!

I plugged it in and set the time on the generously sized and very well lit clock on the front of the machine.  I played with all the buttons and set the timer too, so I could have my hot coffee ready to go at 5:00am, when I am up and driving my figure skater to the ice arena. 

The various buttons on the front of the machine allow you to set the coffee maker to start immediately, or start at the preset time.  There is also a "clean" setting which takes an hour or so, and is supposed to de-scale and clean out the tubes and reservoir.  You can also select the strength of brew you prefer.  I always choose regular, I didn't notice much difference, but the strong brew setting does take longer.  The reservoir is filled from the top of the machine, and the water level indicator is on both sides of the machine, and very easy to see.  The basket and filter sit under the lid, inside the machine, and the water filter assembly sits on top of the basket.  The hot water pours through the filter before hitting the coffee grounds.  This filter really makes a difference in the taste of the coffee, and is very easy to change every 6 months or so.  Refill discs cost $3 for 2 discs.

I brewed the first pot of coffee, it took about 15 minutes to brew, so this is not for the desperate coffee deprived person!!  When the coffee brewing was complete, the earsplitting "brewing complete" beeping was loud enough to wake everyone in the household up.  On later models of this coffeemaker, the brewing complete alarm can be turned to quiet, or off (thank goodness).  Although the carafe is stainless steel, and thermal, the people at Mr. Coffee for some reason decided that it still needed a hot plate to sit on.  I think this is a waste of power, it is totally unecessary with a thermal carafe!!! but they also make one with a glass carafe, so maybe they are interchangeable.

When pouring the coffee, you must press the button on top of the handle with your thumb to open the valve and release the lifesaving brew!! the button is well placed right where your thumb would be anyway when pouring from a jug, so it is not awkward.  The spout is well shaped and there is no dripping.  The carafe can be removed for pouring for a short time while still brewing without any dripping. 

The coffee was hot and delicious and stayed hot in the pot for a few hours without being scorched by the hotplate as in a glass carafe.  The clock on the front of the machine switches to the "brewing" timer for 2 hours after the coffee starts brewing, basically telling you how long ago the coffee was brewed.  When the 2 hours is up, the hot plate goes off, and the clock returns to it's regular time telling function.  

After about 10 months of use, the coffee maker started creating more steam than water, and brewed less than a pot of practically luke-warm coffee.  I had not used the "clean" function every month, as I was instructed to do, so I put it through the clean cycle 5-6 times, and when that did not work, I used vinegar in the clean cycle a couple of times.  When that did not work, I tried CLR, that did not work either. 

I contacted Mr. Coffee, as the coffee-maker was still under warranty.  The 1st customer service rep was rude, but started troubleshooting the problem anyway.  As soon as I told her I used CLR as a last ditched attempt to clean it, she gleefully told me I had voided the warranty, and hung up on me.  I called back, got a customer service manager on the phone, explained the problem again, and the rudeness of the last rep, and was immediately offered a replacement as my using CLR had not caused the problem, the unit was obviously defective. 

The new unit is essentially the same as the old one, but has the beeping volume control...that was nice!!  This time I used the clean cycle fairly regularly, but now that this one is almost 2 years old, the same problem has started, lots of steam, half a pot of luke-warm coffee, and now it is out of warranty. I ran the clean cycle several times, with vinegar too, and it made no difference.  Steam poured from every crack and crevase, and the steam even made it's way inside the electronics now, the clock stopped working!.  It's done, time to throw it away unfortunately. 

I'm now perusing epinions for suggestions on a more reliable coffee maker, I don't mind spending a little more, as long as I get a good cup of coffee, a thermal carafe, and more than 2 years use out of it!  

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