Keurig Keeps Shutting Off While Brewing Or Descaling (Solved)

Struggling with your Keurig coffee maker shutting off during brewing or descaling?

This guide provides quick solutions to fix your Keurig and ensure smooth, hassle-free coffee brewing.

How To Fix A Keurig That Keeps Shutting Off While Brewing Or Descaling

Here are the 8 things you could try when trying to fix your Keurig that keeps shutting off:

  1. Manually puncture the K-Cup to reduce pressure inside.
  2. Remove excess water from the machine.
  3. Unstuck the floater in the water reservoir.
  4. Reset the thermostat.
  5. Tap the pump to dislodge debris or blockage.
  6. Perform descaling to remove mineral buildup.
  7. For older models, force descaling by holding the brew button.
  8. Call Keurig customer service if none of the above things worked.

Let’s take a closer look at each of these steps below.

Keurig Keeps shutting off

Puncture The K-Cup Twice

First, manually press the K-Cup onto the bottom needle of the machine to puncture it. Then, remove the cup, turn it 90 degrees, and place it back before closing the lid.

This creates two holes in the K-Cup, helping to reduce internal pressure. Try brewing a cup to see if it fixes the issue.

This technique is particularly useful for milk-based K-Cups, but it may also work with regular K-Cups. However, you run the risk of getting grounds in your Keurig coffee.

This method works especially well for K-Cups that contain milk. It might also be effective for standard K-Cups, but there’s a chance that grounds end up in your Keurig Coffee.

Drain Excess Water From The Keurig Coffee Maker

  1. Remove the water reservoir.
  2. Press your finger against the suction port where the reservoir attaches.
  3. With your finger still on the port, turn the machine upside down.
  4. Gently tilt the machine side to side to let any trapped water come out.
  5. Replace the water reservoir.
  6. Plug in the machine and test it with a new pod.

Floater Stuck In Water Reservoir

Your Keurig coffee maker might stop brewing or have descaling problems if the water tank’s floater gets stuck.

This floater indicates the water level, and if it’s stuck, the “add water” light may stay on. This can happen due to scale buildup or not using the machine for a while.

To fix it, take out the water tank and gently shake it to free the floater. For future prevention, clean the tank and floater with vinegar. Then, refill the tank and check if your Keurig is working properly again.

Reset The Thermostat

Some people have found that the issue is related to the thermostat and that resetting it might help. Here is how to reset the thermostat:

  • Remove the Keurig’s cover to access the thermostat.
  • Find a small white button with wires attached to it on one of the sides.
  • Use a paperclip or needle to press it.

For detailed instructions, you can refer to the full guide I’ve written on resetting the Keurig’s thermostat.

image showing where to reset with a paperclip

If resetting the thermostat doesn’t resolve the issue, move on to the next step.

Tap The Pump

To fix a Keurig machine that shuts off due to pressure or blockage, you should first check the pump.

This is a small cylindrical component usually located on the top side of the machine, with tubes connected to it.

You can gently tap on the pump with a screwdriver or a similar tool. This action might dislodge any debris or blockage causing the problem.

After tapping the pump, turn the Keurig on, choose your cup size, and press the brew button. If the machine brews without shutting off, you have successfully resolved the issue.

Alternatively, without opening the machine, you can try tapping the sides and top of the Keurig a few times, this method has worked for me a couple of times.

Your Keurig Needs To Be Descaled

If your Keurig coffee maker keeps shutting off while brewing or descaling, it might be a sign that it’s time for a thorough cleaning.

Mineral deposits can accumulate inside the machine, affecting its performance and causing unexpected shutdowns. Regular descaling is key to keeping your Keurig in top shape and also prevents it from eventually spraying everywhere.

Here’s a descaling guide for various newer Keurig models:

For older models, check YouTube for descaling instructions for your specific machine.

You should descale your Keurig every 3 to 6 months, depending on your water’s hardness and how often you use the machine.

Older Keurig Shuts Off When I Press The Brew Button

If you own an older Keurig coffee maker like the K-Select, K-Elite, 2.0, or K-Classic. Your Keurig may shut off right after you press the button, so you can’t even descale it properly. There is a simple solution, you can force it to descale.

Here is how to force an older Keurig model to descale:

Step 1: Prepare the Cleaning Solution & Fill the Water Reservoir

To descale your coffee maker, you will need a mixture of warm water and vinegar. This solution will help remove any build-up or clogs inside the machine that might be causing the problem.

Pour the water and vinegar mixture into the Keurig’s water reservoir. Make sure it is filled adequately to run the cleaning process effectively.

Step 2: Start the Brewing Process

Press the brew button on your Keurig. If the machine shuts off, hold the button down until it starts brewing. This forces the machine to pump the cleaning solution through its system.

Step 3: Repeat the Process

Continue holding the brew button until the entire cleaning solution has been pumped through the machine.

You may need to repeat this process several times to ensure that the internal components are thoroughly cleaned.

Step 4: Check the Machine’s Functionality

Before attempting to brew coffee, press the brew button to see if the machine works on its own. If it still shuts off, continue holding the button while brewing your coffee.

Step 5: Monitor Progress Over Time

It might take a few tries of repeating the cleaning process for the Keurig to start working normally on its own.

Keep trying this method until the machine functions properly without having to hold the brew button.

Step 6: Maintain the Machine

To prevent future issues, clean the machine regularly with water and vinegar. This will help ensure that any build-up or clogs are removed and that the machine continues to function properly.

If the problem persists or occurs frequently, it may be time to consider upgrading to a newer model.

The Last Thing You Could Try

Your last option is to get in touch with Keurig customer service. They’ll usually help you troubleshoot your Keurig coffee maker.

If they find that the problem isn’t easy to fix or they can’t figure out what’s wrong, they often offer a new machine, sometimes even when you’re out of warranty.

I’ve heard of cases where the warranty had already expired, but Keurig still gave a 20% discount on a new machine.


In conclusion, to address the issue of a Keurig coffee maker shutting off while brewing or descaling, several solutions can be employed.

These include manually puncturing the K-Cup, removing excess water, checking the floater in the water reservoir, resetting the thermostat, and tapping the pump.

Descaling is essential for optimal performance, and older models may require forced descaling using a water-vinegar solution.

Regular maintenance is key to preventing future issues. With these steps in mind, you can ensure your Keurig coffee maker continues to deliver great-tasting coffee for years to come.

Thanks for reading!