How Does A Coffee Maker Work

One cannot simply start a day without a perfect cup of coffee. It does not matter whether you are feeling cheerful or lazy in the morning. A perfect cup of coffee turns out to be perfect for every situation and makes your day great. Before, we needed to rely on coffee houses to get a fresh cup of coffee. But now, we can brew the perfect cup of coffee right in your home with a decent coffee maker.

Ever since coffee makers were first introduced, we can see a constant increase in the relevance and demand of coffee makers as it has a lot of advantages. To name a few, you can get a pure and fresh cup of coffee by simply pressing a button. Also, you can choose the perfect type of coffee for yourself and experiment with different options until you find the best one.

Today, we will try to understand how a coffee machine manages to deliver a cup of coffee and what goes into the process. By the time you finish this article, you will have lots of information about both drip and espresso coffee makers and you can also fix one if there is some problem with the one you own.

Table of Contents

Drip Coffee MakerComponents

Coffee making process



Coffee making process



Drip Coffee Maker

Drip coffee machines are the most popular coffee makers in the industry right now. You will find these machines being used on a daily basis in the majority of commercial outlets as well as in almost every home. These machines use flowing water and pass it through the coffee to get the flavor. Its operation is quite simple and so is its construction.


A drip coffee machine consists of two different sections that are distinguishable from one another. In the top portion, there are several different components that are listed below:

The reservoir

This is the largest section of a coffee machine as it holds a large quantity of water. You need to fill this reservoir with water before you start the machine. While there are a lot of variations in size, all reservoirs carry out the same task.

Dripping section

The dripping area controls the flow of water over the coffee grounds. It is generally made out of plastic and has a porous structure so that water can pass through it.

The Faucet

This is one of the most important parts of the coffee makers. The faucet is generally a tap or a valve that allows the spraying of water over the coffee grounds. This spraying is required to make the grounds perfectly saturated which in turn increases the quality of end results.

Hot water Tube

This tube connects the lower portion of the coffee maker to the upper portion. As the name suggests, it simply carries the high-temperature water from the lower part of the coffee maker towards the top portion so that it can be converted into the coffee.

As for the lower part, it consists of the following elements:

Water tubes

Water tubes in a coffee maker are simply hollow pipes that carry the water around. To make the process even easier, the coffee makers have water heaters built into them. Thus, you can put even normal water in the coffee maker without needing to preheat. This water flows through the water tubes and there are distinct tubes available for both hot and cold water.

Heating elements

The heating element is responsible for raising the temperature of the water. It consists of 2 different parts that are resisting coiling and water tubes. The metal coiling resists the flow of electricity and increases the temperature of the coil. These hot coils come in contact with the water and increase the water temperature.

One way valve

Water can be very hazardous, especially if it is inside an electronic device. To avoid the counter flow of water, a one-way valve is installed below the reservoir of the coffee maker. This valve only allows the flow of water in one direction.

Power circuit

This section includes all of the circuitry and connections of the main power cord. It provides the required energy which is transferred to the heating elements and all other parts of the coffee makers.

Coffee making process

Now that you know what goes into a coffee machine, let’s discuss its working principle and overall coffee making process.

  • First of all, you have to put the water into the water reservoir available on the top of the coffee machine.
  • Once the machine is started, the water is transferred from the reservoir to the lower portion of the machine for heating.
  • Once the required temperature is reached, the hot water is then passed through the hot water tubes.
  • The hot water reaches the faucet and it is sprayed over the fresh coffee grounds to make it completely saturated and then dripped through it to make coffee.


Here are some common problems that you may face with your coffee maker:

1. Flow of coffee is very slow

This usually happens when there is clogging inside the tubes of the coffee machine. It can be because of the impurities gathering inside the pipes over time. To resolve this, you will have to get the machine cleaned thoroughly. After that, make sure you only purify filtered water in the machine.

2. Coffee maker is not providing hot coffee

This issue indicates a problem with the heating element used in the coffee machine. To fix this, get the heating element of your coffee machine checked. It might need a replacement in most cases to deliver hot coffee.


Many people get espresso confused with coffee while in reality, espresso is comparatively thicker and served in a smaller quantity as compared to regular coffee. Even the process used for making espresso differs a lot from coffee and so does the machine used for it. The espresso machines are generally smaller in size than a coffee machine and consist of fewer components. Here are the different elements that are found inside an espresso machine:


The reservoir

Similar to the coffee machines, the espresso machines also have dedicated water reservoirs that store the water. As the quantity of express made in each batch is smaller than coffee, the size of the water reservoir is also compact.


The pump creates positive pressure inside the espresso machine that results in the flow of water. There are different kinds of pumps that are used in different espresso machines. Although, at least 9 bar pressure is required from an espresso machine pump.

Heating Section

The heating of water in an espresso machine is carried out in a similar fashion as in a drip coffee machine. There is a separate metal container that is heated by a heating element and increases the temperature of the water up to its boiling point.


The group head is a simple mechanism inside an espresso machine that carries the water from the heating chamber towards the portafilter. You can take a look at his mechanism as it is located behind the machine where usually the power switch is located.


The last part of the espresso machine is a portafilter. This is a simple filter made out of metal over which the coffee grounds are placed. It is made up of metal instead of plastic as it sustains the pressure which is applied over the grounded coffee.

Coffee making process

Here is how espresso is prepared in an espresso machine:

  • Similar to a coffee machine, you have to fill up the reservoir completely before starting the machine.
  • Once the water has passed through the heating section and reached its boiling point, the machine will alert you about going ahead.
  • After that, take the portafilter out of the espresso machine and fill it with finely grounded coffee beans. Once the filter is full, put it back in the machine and lock it.
  • To prevent any spillage, put a cup under the spout before turning on the machine.
  • Once you start the process, the pump will pass the high-pressure water through the coffee grounds and generate a thick espresso which will be poured into your cup.


Here are some common problems that you may face with your coffee maker:

1. Espresso is not coming out

If you have started the machine a while ago and don’t see any espresso coming out of it, there might be a problem with the water flow inside the espresso machine. To fix this, make sure the water reservoir is completely filled. If that is not the case, you might have an issue with the water pump.

2. There are grounds inside the espresso

If you are finding coarse or even fine particles of coffee beans in your espresso cup, you might have a problem with the portafilter of your espresso machine. It generally happens when the portafilter is bent or unable to withstand the pressure. Once you get the filter replaced, it will resolve this problem completely.


Coffee machines have recently gained a lot of attention from consumers as these handy machines make life a lot easier. Instead of making coffee manually every morning, you can simply pour water into the coffee machine, fill it up with water, and get the coffee at the press of a button.

You will also find different types of coffee machines such as regular coffee machines and espresso machines in case you want to experience different types of coffee. After reading about how coffee makers work, we can assure you that you will completely understand the working procedure of a coffee maker as well as get familiar with common coffee maker problems.







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