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How to Prime a Keurig

How to Prime a Keurig [3 Easy Steps]

Your Keurig machine may give you a “Prime” error message if the water in the reservoir doesn’t come out. Water might not be getting through for more than one reason. It could be that the reservoir isn’t lined up right, it’s dirty, or something is blocking the needle.

Running a water-only brew cycle on your Keurig makes these problems easy to fix. This guide shows how to prime a Keurig, remove mineral buildup, and clean the inner tubes. You can make perfect cups of tasty coffee in just a few minutes.

Step-by-Step Guide for How to Prime a Keurig

Here are the three steps for how to prime a Keurig coffee machine. It’s preferable to perform all three since it’s good routine maintenance, even if the prime error doesn’t appear on your Keurig panel.

If you have already completed some of these stages, you might want to try bypassing them and see if they still work.

1. Clean the Water Reservoir

One thing that can cause a “prime” error with a Keurig is a dirty water reservoir. Then, the first thing you should do is clean your water tank.

Remove the Water Reservoir

Pull the water reservoir’s cap, and remove the water reservoir from your brewer. Since misalignment is one factor in the Prime error, you might be tempted to re-install the reservoir as is, but you should probably clean it while you’re at it.

Clean the Reservoir

Use soft dish soap and a soft, non-abrasive cloth to clean the reservoir. Do not forget to access the outlets on the interior and outside.

Rinse it well, then let it dry. Don’t forget to rinse well and get all the soap out. This may need to be done more than once to eliminate all the residue.

Re-attach the Reservoir

Once the water has dried in the reservoir, please put it back in the machine. Be sure to put the water filter in the reservoir first if it comes with one. Ensure the part is in the right place and there are no air bubbles.

Run a Brewing Cycle with Water

Fill the reservoir with water until the line that says “Max” is reached. Don’t let the reservoir fill up too much. Start the brewer and position a cup under the drip tray to collect the water.

During this process, don’t add any K-cups. Pull the handle out and let it down, but leave the holder for the portion packs empty. Start brewing by turning on the machine. You’ll need to do this a few times to clean the brewer.

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2. Clean the Needles

If your Keurig still says “Prime” after you’ve cleaned the water reservoir, it’s time to wash the needles. Your Keurig has two needles: one that lets hot water into the K-Cup and one that allows coffee out of the K-Cup and into your cup below.

Turn the Power off

Put the device into power save mode and remove the plug from the wall outlet.

Take out the Holder

Pull up on the handle and hold the upper half of the holder tightly. You can get the K-Cup holder off the brewer by pushing up on the bottom with your finger.

Take Apart the Holder

The holder can also be taken apart. Holding the top and bottom together, pull or twist them off. This will show a small tube with a hole for the exit needle.

Clean the Needle’s Hole

Put a paper clip into the hole’s bottom using a straightened one. Any stuck-on bits can be broken up with a gentle turning motion. This process might need to be repeated a few times after wiping the paper clip. Note that the paper clip cannot be pushed through the eye of the needle and out the top.

Clean the Funnel and the Holder

Run warm water over the funnel and its holder to clean them. Allow some water to pass through the exit hole and needle. This will get rid of any leftovers even more.

Set the holder and funnel aside and let it dry in the air. The drying process can be sped up with a paper towel.

Clean the Needle

If you lift the handle, the entrance needle can be found beneath the brew head. It would help if you cleaned both of the holes because there are two of them.

As you did with the funnel, clean the needles with a paper clip. The needle is extremely sharp, so take extra care with your hands and fingers.

Reassemble the Portion Holder

Put the Keurig back together after reassembling the funnel and holder. The holder should snap into place once you line it up with the opening’s lines.

Run a Brewing Cycle with Water

Fill the reservoir with water to the “max” line and set a cup on the dish. Press the “brew” button to start a cycle that only uses water to clear out any leftover debris.

3. Clean the Filter Screen

You can also eliminate the “Prime” message by following the steps below to clean the filter screen.

Turn your Machine off

The filter screens should be cleaned after the machine has been turned off and the plug has been removed from the outlet.

Remove the Reservoir

First, remove the water reservoir from the device and empty it of all the fluid previously contained.

Clean the Base Port

You can find the base port on the base that supports the reservoir. It is a small opening. Use a damp cloth to clean it.

Clean the Filter

First, clean the port and mesh screen filter frequently part of the water reservoir. Get your sink ready, and then run water through the filter while it’s in the sink to get rid of debris.

To completely rinse it off, fill the reservoir with liquid, replace the lid, fasten it in place, and shake it vigorously a few times.

Turn the reservoir over and fill the base port with water. If there is dirt inside, use your finger to take it out.

When cleaning the port, it’s also important to compress the spring with your finger several times to loosen any buildup that may have accumulated as the water ran over the port.

Re-install the Reservoir

Put the reservoir back where it belongs on the base. Remember to install the water filter attachment if the machine has one before changing the reservoir if it does.

Put water in the reservoir and a cup on the tray. Start brewing with only water to complete the procedure. For the best results, brew a few times with only water.

How to Prime a Keurig with Vinegar?

Pour vinegar into the water up to the halfway point. Fill the rest of the water tank with fresh water. Put the K-cup in the device and start brewing. Empty the reservoir after each brew cycle.

To eliminate bacteria and lime deposits, you should descale your coffee maker. Descale is easy to do and can improve the taste and function of your coffee in just a few minutes. Keurig has some helpful videos that show how to descale coffee makers.

A blocked portion of a Keurig coffee maker stops or reduces coffee production. If your machine is clean, but the indicator is still on, hold the 8oz and 10oz keys for 5 seconds.

The brewer’s exit needle may become jammed after descaling, rendering brewing impossible. Keurig’s can also fail to brew because the injection tubes can get clogged.

Get a paper clip if the coffee machine’s exit needle becomes stuck. When the scale is off, the device will report that coffee is brewing but won’t brew. If you use vinegar for descaling, replace the water filter cartridge, so the vinegar flavor remains after the descaling process.

You should use warm soapy water to wash and clean the parts of a coffee machine. Some models might even have features that can go in the dishwasher. The coffee maker’s interior should be cleaned just like the exterior.

Fill your reservoir with 2 glasses of water and 4 cups of white vinegar to disassemble and clean it. In a few minutes, the machine makes lukewarm vinegar in cups without a filter.

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How Long Does a Keurig Take to Prime?

A Keurig takes about 3 minutes to get ready to use. At this point, the water is drawn into the apparatus and heated to the proper brewing temperature.

When error messages come up on Keurig Prime coffee makers, they usually mean one of three things. When the word “Prime” appears on the screen, it means you are too late. Three steps must be completed before your machine is prepared for use and ready to go.

A dirty reservoir is often the cause of the “Prime” error. Use a soft, non-abrasive cloth and gentle dish soap to eliminate the mess. You can clean the brewer without using a K-cup if you want to. What is the best course of action to fix this Keurig Prime problem?

The reservoir and the filter screen are the two locations that require cleaning. It could mean that minerals and other leftovers have built up in the machine’s tubes and tanks. If you want to descale these devices, you can do it with relative ease by using white vinegar or vinegar that has been specifically formulated for use with these machines.

Descaling a Keurig coffee machine might be able to get rid of the “Prime” error message. In addition to deep cleaning, full descale is another option for this machine.

Dialing up Keurig

If your machine is still broken, something is amiss. It would be a great idea to call Keurig’s helpful customer service specialists and ask for help. A free replacement might be provided if your Keurig is still protected by the manufacturer’s warranty, which normally lasts between one and three years for most models.

You should have no trouble agreeing with Keurig because they offer some of the greatest customer support in the coffee industry. Call them if your equipment is past its warranty period but still needs help.

Due to numerous recalls caused by faulty parts on occasion, Keurig machines may still cover you even after your warranty has run out. What do you have to lose if your device still isn’t working? Don’t hesitate to contact them and ask for assistance.

Is Keurig Not Working? Try Out These Ideas!

You may do a few things if your Keurig takes too long to brew or doesn’t appear to be heating up. First, check the machine for blockage indications. A plunger is a quick and easy way to solve this problem. If that doesn’t clear a clog in the machine, vinegar will. It might be necessary to hold off on using the device until it has fully warmed up.

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How do you determine whether a Keurig needs priming?

Most of the time, if your Keurig is having trouble pumping water, it must be primed. Some models have alerts for certain prime errors. The Elite and Classic brewers flash three lights while priming: add water, heating, and small cup buttons. Keurig’s special version and platinum brewers display “Prime” on the LCD.

What does “prime” mean on your Keurig?

As a rule, Keurig’s primary message indicates the presence of mineral buildup in the machine’s reservoirs and plumbing. Calcium and limestone are minerals that might linger in your water and obstruct the water flow in your coffee maker. Descale and clean your Keurig regularly to avoid this problem.

How Often Should You Descale a Keurig?

The frequency of limescale removal depends on how frequently you use the device and how hard the water is that you use to make coffee. If your Keurig doesn’t have a sign telling you when to clean it, you should clean it about every two months.

What Causes the Keurig Prime Error?

Prime implies your Keurig isn’t getting enough water from its reservoir. Sediment in the water supply, lint from wiping the reservoir, and grains of charcoal from the filter are all potential culprits.

The manufacturer recommends using filtered water to avoid this problem. Platinum and Special Edition brewers will display Prime and refuse to brew. The small cup size, heating, and add-water indicators will flash on devices without a display screen.

Why doesn’t my Keurig pump water?

Scaling of the water, which accumulates and obstructs the water pump in Keurig’s, is the most likely because of their inability to pump water. There are a few solutions available for addressing this issue. The simplest method is to remove the water reservoir from the Keurig, empty it, and then partially refill it.

What does Prime mean in a coffee maker?

When you try to operate, the absence of water (or coffee) tells you there’s a problem, even if there is no indicator. Priming is another word for letting air into a machine. Most of the time, this is easy to fix. Even doing it automatically for you is occasionally possible with devices.

How often should you use vinegar in a Keurig?

Use white vinegar or a descaling solution to clean the water reservoir by removing the mineral buildup. This is something you only have to do every 3 to 6 months.


When the reservoir, needles, or reservoir is dirty or out of alignment, your Keurig will show the Prime error message. Washing the reservoir and needles is the best method to prime your Keurig, so do that.

Then, ensure every component is lined up and in the proper location, particularly the reservoir. If you don’t prime your Keurig, it will keep telling you to prime it, the amount of coffee you get will go down, and the coffee will start to taste funny.

We know how frustrating it is not to have coffee in the morning. Although spending hours getting this device back to work is a headache, not everything is flawless. We hope this article helped you figure out how to prime a Keurig to solve your problem.

Best Coffee Sip Editorial

We deeply appreciate the profound impact a superb cup of coffee can have. Beyond being a mere beverage, it embodies a sensory journey that tantalizes the taste buds, enlivens the senses, and provides solace in our everyday routines. With an unwavering commitment to excellence, our team of dedicated professionals embarks on a mission to empower you in refining your coffee brewing prowess. Drawing upon our expertise, we aim to guide you in discovering the optimal equipement and techniques that will elevate your coffee experience to unprecedented heights.

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