How to Clean a Coffee Thermos: Step-by-Step Guide

After reading this article, you should be well equipped to clean a coffee thermos in a timely, efficient manner.
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Last updatedLast updated: October 11, 2021
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Coffee is an integral part of many people’s lives, but unfortunately, it is not always very accessible. This is mostly because people get their cup of Joe from the neighborhood coffee shops rather than making it at home. If you make your coffee, there would be no scarcity if your favorite shop weren’t open.

Your coffee thermos would not just improve your chances of experiencing a caffeine rush when you need one but would also keep your coffee at a more desirable temperature. Don’t believe us? scienceabc.com Trusted Source Why Does A Thermos Keep Things Cold Longer Than It Keeps Things Hot? » Science ABC A thermos appears to be more effective for keeping cold liquids chilled because the difference in temperature between the ambient temperature and perceived “cold” and “hot” liquids. www.scienceabc.com reports that your batch of coffee can be kept hot for up to two days with a premium thermos.

Advantage number two would be utilizing your own coffee thermos and always having coffee when you need it. Finding out how to clean a coffee thermos helps you enjoy your thermos use even more.

Tools and materials, you will need to clean a thermos

How to Clean a Coffee Thermos: Step-by-Step Guide

You already have all the necessary tools for cleaning at home, but pay attention to your thermos’ material.

Most thermoses are designed with three major components in mind; the cup on the top, the stopper that prevents spillage, and the body. This body is arguably the most important of the thermos when it comes to the heat retention of your beverage or drink.

The body houses are usually designed so that the coffee-carrying compartment of the thermos contains two walls, separated by a vacuum. The structure aside, though, all the thermos parts would need to be cleaned for it to be truly healthy.

Depending on the materials used in making your thermos, the following tools and materials could be used in cleaning it.

  • A long-handled bottle brush: if you are wondering why you need a brush; it’s because nothing scrubs better than a brush. If you are wondering why you need one with a long handle, it’s because we can guarantee that you would struggle to get your hand deep enough into a thermos to clean it properly. If you’re confused about which brush to get, this bottle brush from Masthome stores comes well recommended by those lucky enough to have tried it out.
  • A clean towel: after washing the thermos, it would require drying, and it having a towel to do that would be nice. The towel to be used should be absorbent and soft. However, we would advise that a towel only be used on the exterior as it might not be hygienic to use a towel on the inside of your thermos, no matter how clean it may appear.
  • Cleaning liquid or solvent; based on your need or preference, there are several cleaning liquids or substances you could use to clean your thermos ranging from a traditional dishwashing detergent, vinegar, baking soda, and salt & ice.
  • Water: either cool water or hot water could be used depending on the cleaning method.

How to clean a coffee thermos: Instructions

How to Clean a Coffee Thermos: Step-by-Step Guide

Salt and eggshell are the ingredients that help you to clean a thermos in the easiest way.

Having the necessary tools and materials is one thing; following the right procedures to keep your thermos clean and safe is another. This emphasis on a right procedure should be well noted as using a thermos with a dishwasher could damage the lining. If you are to do this, check if the thermos is dishwasher suitable.

The “right procedure” would, however, vary by method, and any of the following methods could be utilized:

  • Soap and water method

This is the most common cleaning method for any type of washing or cleaning and it stays so for thermos as well. Its popularity is largely due to the fact that it can be done with household materials and along with your other dishwashing duties.

All you have to do to clean your thermos this way is empty the thermos of its contents, rinse it out with water, add a suitable amount of detergent into it, and gently scrub the inner compartment using the long handle brush.

Upon scrubbing the insides, you should wash the outer parts as well. The same process should be carried out on the cup and stopper, and all the components should be thoroughly rinsed.

  • Baking soda and water method

To use this method, pour a tablespoon of baking soda into the thermos, add an appropriate amount of water, shake, and leave for about two to three hours. Once the waiting time is over, pour the baking soda solution into the thermos and wash with soap and water. The baking soda serves to remove tough stains and smells before the soap is used.

  • Vinegar method

Vinegar is a household cleaning agent and is used as a component of many homemade cleaning solutions. This method is popular for its simplicity and the use of non-toxic household material. All you need to do here is pour some white vinegar or a cup of apple cider into the thermos and add an appropriate amount of hot water. Shake the contents of the thermos and leave for about an hour. Once done, pour out the contents of the thermos and rinse with hot water. The thermos should be rinsed as many times as is necessary to get the odor of vinegar out.

  • The scrubbing with salt and ice method

This is more homemade and is simpler than the vinegar method. All you need is some ice and salt. You pout the ice into the thermos along with two spoons of salt. After that, use the brush to scrub the insides of the thermos for about five minutes and then pour out the contents before rinsing with warm water.

  • Eggshell cleaning method

Eggshells have always been a component of many homemade detergent mixtures, so it shouldn’t be that much of a shocker to see it here. The procedure is quite simple; you get some eggshells together, crush them, pour them into the flask and add hot water.

Shake the contents of the thermos for about five minutes and then pour out its contents. Once done, wash again with soap and water and rinse thoroughly. The eggshells would serve as abrasives and help dislodge any fixed dirt in the thermos. They are, however, not popular for cleaning thermos as they could leave scratches on the inside.

Dissolving stains and Deeper cleaning

Considering that the contents of your thermos are coffee and not just water or juice, it might be harder to get some of the stains that might accrue. As such, conventional methods might not be as effective. Not to worry, though; the methods outlined above are just as effective at dissolving and removing stains.

How to Clean a Coffee Thermos: Step-by-Step Guide

Adding vinegar and baking soda together creates a fizzy chemical reaction that can help dissolve stains and loosen up gunky messes.

If the stains are still tough to get out, try combining some of the methods. In addition, using both vinegar and baking soda to clean Trusted Source Why are vinegar and baking soda so good for cleaning? | Live Science Why are common household items like baking soda and vinegar such good cleaning agents? www.livescience.com is very effective for cleaning due to their wide Ph ranges.

Drying

Proper thermos drying can either be done by hand using a soft dry towel or by air-drying. A combination of air and hand drying methods can ensure the thermos is dried well after being washed.

Keeping a coffee thermos clean for longer

A key part of maintaining the functionality of an appliance or tool is proper maintenance and the same goes for a thermos. Though the thermos might be used for storing coffee, this doesn’t mean the coffee should stay there forever. A good practice to develop would be emptying, rinsing, and washing the thermos at the end of every day.

Allowing the coffee to remain in the thermos for too long would not just lead to the development of a bad odor but it would also lead to deeper stains. Beyond these, though, is the possibility of microbial build-up within the thermos.

Tips on how to remove the coffee smell

A distinct feature of coffee is the smell. This smell is immediately recognizable to anyone who has consumed the beverage before. Regardless of the origins of your coffee beans or the type of coffee drink you are consuming, chances are the smell would still be the same.

However, having a thermos that smells of coffee even after it is washed indicates that you are not washing or cleaning your thermos well as the. The smell can easily be gotten rid of with a variety of cleaning materials, one of which is this cleaning tablets from Essential Values. Here are a few other tips on how to remove the coffee smell from a thermos:

1. Use vinegar with hot water

The vinegar method outlined earlier also removes odors as well. It should be noted, though, that when used in cleaning, vinegar leaves behind its own unique smell as well. As such, after using the vinegar, be sure to rinse thoroughly with hot water if needed.

2. Baking soda and hot water

Baking soda is popularly used for removing odors because in fridges and cupboards. This makes it suitable for this function in a thermos as well.

3. Trying bleach

How to Clean a Coffee Thermos: Step-by-Step Guide

Using a bleach cleaner will not damage equipment or hard, nonporous surfaces, including stainless steel, plastics, glazed ceramics, glass, porcelain, and other materials. It can be used to safely clean and disinfect surfaces.

Bleach is a powerful cleaning Trusted Source How to Make Your Own Disinfectant Bleach Solution You don’t have to buy expensive cleaning products to kill germs in your home. Learn how to mix and use a bleach cleaning solution safely. www.verywellhealth.com agent and can be used to clean as well as remove odors. However, bleach has a strong odor itself and after using, the thermos would need to be rinsed thoroughly and air-dried as well.

Other methods that can be used to eliminate odors from a thermos include:

  • Scrubbing with ice and salt
  • Washing with detergent
  • Using a vinegar-baking soda mix

Final thoughts

It doesn’t matter how strong a pot of coffee you have prepared and stored in your thermos or how much caffeine is present in the cup of coffee, it can be cleaned properly, and if you use the right procedures and tools, it would be.

The alternative to preventing strong stains is to measure coffee with or without scales, to control the strength and reduce the potential for staining. However, even if that were done the knowledge of how to clean a coffee thermos would still be an important part of owning one.

Make sure your coffee thermos stays clean and for longer periods as proper cleaning could help preserve and elongate the life span of your thermos. Such a simple attitude to using your thermos could be the difference between using it for mere months or for several years. In case you’re eager to change your thermos at all, you may look up the list of the best coffee thermos.

References

1.
Why Does A Thermos Keep Things Cold Longer Than It Keeps Things Hot? » Science ABC
A thermos appears to be more effective for keeping cold liquids chilled because the difference in temperature between the ambient temperature and perceived “cold” and “hot” liquids.
2.
Why are vinegar and baking soda so good for cleaning? | Live Science
Why are common household items like baking soda and vinegar such good cleaning agents?
3.
How to Make Your Own Disinfectant Bleach Solution
You don’t have to buy expensive cleaning products to kill germs in your home. Learn how to mix and use a bleach cleaning solution safely.
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