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Small Drip Coffee Makers Buying Tips

Aug 13, 2008
It is possible to buy drip coffee makers that will grind beans, work on a timer or probably even play the theme from Spider Man. That is not what we are talking about here, though. This is about buying a simple unit that will get you your dose of caffeine without giving you a headache in the process. I have found the two most important factors are long term reliability and having a carafe that pours well.

Unfortunately, it is pretty hard to judge the reliability of an unknown coffee maker. They tend to become history when the heating coil breaks or a non-replaceable fuse blows. The only guide here is to buy a model that someone you know has owned for a while or buy from a company you feel has good credibility with their small appliances. Otherwise, you will just have to wing it.

The issue of the carafe is interesting. There is little that is more frustrating than buying a coffee maker with one of the dreaded dribble carafes. You try to pour a cup of coffee from one of these and it goes everywhere but in the cup. Owners often feel that the problem is with their coordination, when what they are facing is simply poor design. It should be possible to bring a bottle of water into the store and test how the display model pours before you buy, but I have never actually seen anyone do this. If nothing else, it should make good theater.

If you plan to put your new coffee maker under a kitchen cabinet or in some other confined area, you might want to measure just how much space you have before you buy. Most coffee makers fill from the top and have a hinged lid that must be lifted. Trying to wiggle this in and out of a tight space can be pretty annoying, especially if you have not had your coffee yet.

Coffee makers that stop flowing when the pot is removed allow you to pour a cup before the entire pot is finished brewing. This is a must for all you impatient types out there who simply can not wait.

Coffee tastes best from a glass carafe. Some people inadvertently have backhanded the carafe into their sink while cleaning, smashing it to pieces. Obtaining a replacement carafe can be more trouble than buying a new coffee maker and cost nearly as much. If you have obliterated your carafe more than once, you might want to buy a coffee maker with a plastic one. While the coffee wont taste quite as good, it will taste better than no coffee at all.

Most people replace their coffee maker right after the old one stops working. Often, they are just not interested in all the fuss and bother involved in shopping around for a new model. They may even buy the first reasonable looking coffee maker they come across. Surprisingly, this approach is not as shortsighted as it might seem. A basic coffee maker is both a simple and inexpensive device. While one bought at random may not have exactly the features that you want, it is pretty likely to do a credible job.
About the Author
Before buying a coffee maker,check out the award winning Presso at Presso America. Focusing on the area of coffee makers, and espresso makers, Anthony Sastre writes articles for Presso America
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