Pros: Excellent cup of coffe
easy to use
warms up quickly
Cons: smallish water reservoir
cleaning regularly is a must
K-cups are expensive
Needs one larger setting
I've had my B70 for four years. Has it been worth it?
With the advent of "on demand" coffee makers, retailers like Starbucks are less of a necessity. Keurig gets it right with the B70.
Fit and Finish
The B70 Is mainly comprised of plastic. The clear water container hold enough water to make two to three good sized cups of coffee, and will not allow the user to run the pump dry. The B70 tells the users to add water and flashed two blue LED's that light up the container when water is needed. This feature is done with a small floating "disc" on the side of the water reservoir, and this can be a problem. (read on)
Even though it is mainly comprised of plastic components, it has held up well in the 4 years that I have had it. The needle-like pin in the base of the K-cup receiver has remained sharp through 4 years of DAILY use – usually 3 cups of coffee a day.
The EL backlit display is easy to read and easy to understand. With options for several sizes of cups and even an option for cold brewing, finding a size that fits your needs isn't a major task unless you're like me and use a very large coffee cup
The black finish has a tendency to show dust so a regular outside cleaning is mandatory to keep the coffee maker looking good.
The unit won't allow a user to attempt to brew without the reservoir in place.
I have found that in order to make a full LARGE mug of coffee, I must use the LARGE size option, brew a cup, then use the SMALL size option and brew AGAIN in order to get a full cup. While this isn't a major problem, having one more, larger brew size would be nice.
K-cups get expensive quickly. While it is nice to be able to brew a variety of coffees and tea, I find that I like the same coffee every morning. Using a K-cup, you can expect a cup of coffee to run about 25 to 50 cents a cup.
Using the optional refillable brew cup is the answer to making even cheaper coffee, but this comes with a caveat. A large tin of coffee will being to "sour" quickly, making a bitter cup rather quickly. Unfortunately, there really is no fix for this. But it's still cheaper to brew your own batch than to buy K-cups, even if you end up throwing away half a can of store bought coffee.
It takes only a few moments for the unit to get up to temperature after turning it on. I find that having the power switch on the back is a real pain and would like to see Keurig move this to the front.
Being able to use the coffee maker with guests at the house is great. It's wonderful to be able to let our guests choose their own coffee and get a unique cup every time. K-cups generally make a fantastic cup of coffee and we've yet to be disappointed.
The B70 has both an auto-on and an Auto Off feature. This is great for those that don't want to wait for the unit to warm up in the morning, or who often forget to turn it off. The down side is that you can't set the unit to automatically brew a cup of coffee. So for those of you that like to wake up to the smell of a fresh pot, this might not be the coffee maker for you.
The B70 will also let you set the default cup size. This is a great feature for those that don't like to fumble around with buttons in the morning (like me).
If course, this unit can do much more than brew a cup of coffee. My wife loves to make hot tea in it as well. There are many flavored K-cups available and none have disappointed in this area.
Where it has fallen short is with making Hot Chocolate and Hot Cider. These K-cups general make a weak version of the drink, often not emptying the K-cup entirely. Our kids have learned that, when the brew is done, to remove the top of the K-cup and scrape out what chocolate is left and deposit it in their cup. This usually solves the problem. We've learned to use the B70 as a "hot water" maker and use packaged hot-chocolate instead of the K-cups. This not only produces a better product, but is much cheaper.
We have yet to find a good way to make spiced cider with the K-Cups as well. We normally use packaged instant cider and just make hot water with the B70. The K-cups that produce cider are woefully inadequate, making more of a tea and less of a cider.
We haven't found much use for the cold water setting on the B70, since we have an iced tea maker, but I can see how it would be useful for someone who likes iced coffee or single serve iced tea.
If the B70 has a weakness, this is it. While it's easy to clean, there's not really indicator that tells you it NEEDS to be cleaned until it stops making full cups. In our house, we have very hard water. About once every 6 months we have to go through the ritual of cleaning the maker out using vinegar. This normally clears out any residue left and the maker starts making good cups again.
The only way we know it needs cleaning is that it spits hot water back into the reservoir rather than making a cup of coffee completely. We are usually left with a ¼ to ½ brewed cup and a warm reservoir.
Letting hard water deposits collect in the reservoir is a sure fire way to ensure you will have problems. The little "disc" that floats in a channel on the side of the reservoir that is used to detect the water level will easily get stuck when the reservoir is dirty. It's either stuck at the top or the bottom. This means you can inadvertently run the reservoir dry, or won't be able to make coffee regardless of how much water is in it.
A good cleaning will solve this problem, but it does need to be watched.
All in all, we love our B70. It faithfully makes coffee every morning as long as we keep it clean. Using the accessory filter to make your own brew really helps keep the cost down and let you enjoy those fancy K-cups when you really want to. It's been a faithful coffee maker for 4 years and there is no sign of it ever giving out.
Keurig really made a great product!
It is now June of 2013 and our Keurig is STILL making coffe, but it has recently started to make unpredictable amounts, despite a thorough cleaning. I believe it is time for a replacement, but this coffee maker has easily made several thousand kups of coffee, teas, hot coacoa, and hot water for other needs. We have incredible hard water in our home and I suspect the problems we are now experiencing are in no way associated with the quality of the machine. We will be replacing out keurig with another keurig. - we still very highly recommend this coffee maker!