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How to Fix the Keurig Coffee Machine Shutting Off

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Your Keurig coffee machine could be shutting off because it needs descaling, it’s suffering from an electrical fault or another reason.

why does my keurig coffee machine keep shutting off

I’ve used a Keurig machine for a few years and have experienced a few shutdowns. So I took the time to research all the things that could’ve caused them, and found out how to fix them. And now I’m about to reveal all of that information.

So if you want to know about any of the following subjects, you’re in the right place…

  • Some key takeaways
  • Potential causes for Keurig machine shutdowns
  • Fixes for Keurig machine faults 

Let’s get into it, then!

Key Takeaways

  • The main cause for a Keurig shutoff is that it needs descaling
  • Other issues could be electrical faults, K-Cups not being punctured
  • You can fix most issues by descaling and cleaning the Keurig coffee machine
  • Alternatively, you may have to perform a hard reset or speaking to customer support

Most Common Issues Causing Keurig Machine Power Offs

If your Keurig machine shuts down randomly while you’re using it, it’s likely to be one of the following issues. And if you know exactly what the issue is, it’s going to be a lot easier to fix it now and if it happens again in the future. 

These are some of the models that many of these issues could apply to: 

Keurig K-EliteKeurig K-SupremeKeurig K-SlimKeurig K-Express
Keurig K-ClassicKeurig K15Keurig K-SuiteKeurig K4000 Cafe

So, check out the likely causes below and then stay tuned to work out how to fix them.

1. The machine needs to be descaled 

The Keurig coffee machine will often turn itself off during the brewing process if it needs to be descaled so badly that the brew cannot be completed. 

If that’s the case, there’s one obvious thing to do: you’re going to need to descale the machine! 

You should have seen that descaling needed to be carried out by a light on the front of the machine. But this doesn’t work 100% of the time in my experience.

I’ll show you which signs to look out for if the light doesn’t trigger to stop things from going so far again in the future later on. I’ll also show you how to actually descale the machine. 

2. An electrical fault

There are a couple of different electric faults that occur within the Keurig machine. These could be to do with sensors not detecting things like the K-Cups. 

Or, some parts of the machine might not be communicating correctly with other parts and the process is shutting off because it doesn’t know how far through it is.

Exactly what the issue is doesn’t really have too much of an effect on what you can do to go about fixing it. But the main things to try are to turn the machine off and on again and perform a hard reset on the device if that fails.

And if neither of these things work, reach out to the Keurig customer support team. 

There aren’t really any ways to actually diagnose an electrical issue so this one is going to be more of a trial and error process.

3. The K-Cup isn’t being punctured correctly 

If the Keurig coffee machine fails to puncture the K-Cup, it may shut itself off. In this case, there are a couple of things you can try out.

You’ll be able to tell if this is the issue if the machine shuts off after you start the brewing process and then you open it up and the K-Cup hasn’t been punctured. 

One of those is to clean the needles. There are some tips on doing this in the cleaning section later on.

Alternatively, you might have to replace the needles themselves. If you’re within your one year of warranty, make sure to speak to Keurig as they could take care of this themselves.

Alternatively, you can order a replacement part cup holder on Amazon and simply remove the old one and put the new one in. This part contains the needle so there’s no need to replace the needle individually.

4. An auto-off timer has been set 

There might not actually be a fault in the first place! It could be possible that someone has set an auto-off timer, and this can be done by accident.

So you’re going to need to check that this is not the case. To do this, click the settings button a few times until the moon icon appears. Then, use the arrows to scroll between ON and OFF.

Alternatively, you can just perform a hard, factory reset on the machine. You can find out how to do that in the solutions section of this article.

5. The machine isn’t detecting the water tank correctly

Perhaps you’ve filled your water tank up but the Keurig coffee machine still doesn’t think there’s any water in it and this is causing it to shut off.

You can find out if this is the case by looking at the “add water” indicator light on the front of the device.

The reason for this fault is usually going to be a misaligned magnet between the machine and the tank, and I’ll show you how to check that and fix it in the next section. 

But it might be that you simply need to detach and reattach the water tank. Again, you’re going to find out more about that in the next section.

6. You’re using the wrong K-Cups

Some people have reported issues with using particular brands of K-Cups. I haven’t experienced this myself, but it could be possible that third party K-Cups (e.g. those from Costco or Sam’s Club) may occasionally not be read correctly by the machine.

Again, I can’t vouch for this specifically. But it might be a good idea to try using another brand of K-Cups and seeing how that works. One brand I would recommend (as I haven’t had any issues with them) is Green Mountain Coffee Roasters. And they taste pretty good, too!

How to Fix the Keurig Coffee Machine Faults 

Now that we know some of the issues causing the Keurig coffee machine to shut off, it’s time to find out what we can do about them.

1. Restart the brewing cycle 

Sometimes, the fact that your brewing cycle shutoff halfway through might just be a temporary power blip from your mains and not an issue with the machine.

If that’s the case, just lift the handle and restart the brewing process. I’d recommend doing this in most cases before you try anything else.

2. Turn the Keurig machine off and on again

The first port of call for most people for actual issues (because it’s the easiest and least invasive option) is simply to power the Keurig coffee machine off and on again.

I’d recommend unplugging it from the mains for at least 30 seconds and then plugging it back in again. This will reset the internal workings of the machine but it won’t perform a hard, factory reset.

3. Remove the water tank and reattach

Another form of resetting the Keurig coffee machine involves removing the water tank and reattaching it.

Try simply doing this first of all. And if that doesn’t work, try turning the machine off, then taking the water tank off, putting it back on again and powering it back on. Sometimes this can be more effective.

4. Perform a hard reset on the Keurig machine

The next thing to do for most issues is a hard (or factory) reset. This is going to reset all of your settings so it could be a little more inconvenient, but it does go one step further in terms of rectifying faults that could cause shutdowns.

You can do this by pressing the small and medium mug buttons at the same time and then releasing. Then, press the menu button three times so that the clock shows the time “6.09”. Press the menu button again to reset it to “0.00”.

Now press the medium cup button one more time and hold it while pressing and releasing the menu button (stay with me…).

Keep that medium button pressed and press the small mug button before releasing both and unplugging the machine for a few minutes before you plug it back in again.

5. Descale the Keurig machine 

A very common way to fix most of the issues that cause the Keurig coffee machine to shut down is to descale it. Limescale can build up inside your machine over time and cause all kinds of issues. 

You can descale by running some descaling solution through the machine while the machine is in descaling mode.

To find out more about descaling your Keurig coffee machine, check out this article.

To stop things from going this far again in the future, be sure to keep an eye out for the signs that the coffee machine needs descaling.

This could be bad tasting coffee or visible signs of sediment inside the machine.

6. Clean the Keurig machine 

Descaling is just one part of the things you’ll need to do to look after your Keurig machine. It’s also important to keep it clean! I recommend taking the coffee machine apart and cleaning each part of it once per week if you use it every day. 

Make sure to detach all parts of the machine and wash them with warm, soapy water once a week if you use your coffee machine every day. You should also wipe down the rest of the machine with a warm, damp cloth.

I also talked about cleaning the Keurig needles if they’re failing to puncture the K-Cups and this is causing a shutdown of the machine. You can do this by taking a safety pin and poking through the holes to remove excess coffee grounds and then wiping them down.

You can find out all about cleaning every part of the Keurig machine in my article here.

7. Realign the water tank magnets 

The issue to do with the Keurig coffee machine can typically be fixed by realigning the water tank magnets.

You can do this by removing the water tank slightly then simply using your hands to move the magnets into a position where they fully line up. This is typically pretty easy to do as the magnets move fairly easily. 

8. Speak to Keurig’s customer support team

If all else fails, the Keurig customer service team will be on hand to help. And there are three ways that you can get hold of them:

  • On the phone: You can call Keurig’s customer support between 7am and 12am EST 7 days a week on the number 866.901.2739.
  • Via email: If you’re not in so much of a rush, speak to the team via the contact form on their website.
  • Through the post: An alternative method of contact is to write them a letter to the address Keurig Green Mountain Inc. 53 South Avenue, Burlington, MA 01803.

Your Keurig coffee machine will come with one year of warranty as well. So if there is an issue that can’t be fixed within one year of purchase then Keurig will cover you with a brand new machine. 

Keurig Coffee Machine Shutoff FAQ

Here are some frequently asked questions regarding shutdowns of Keurig coffee machines and the answers to them.

When do I need to replace my Keurig coffee machine?

If you’ve been through all the steps listed above and spoken to the Keurig customer support team but there’s nothing you can do, it might be about time to upgrade to a new machine. 

Should I turn off my Keurig coffee machine when not in use?

It’s not strictly necessary to turn off our Keurig coffee machine while not in use. This shouldn’t affect its usability, but it does use a little energy (about the same as a lightbulb), so you could wish to power it off for this reason. 

Last Thoughts: Why Your Keurig Coffee Machine May Be Shutting Off

Common issues that cause Keurig coffee machines to shut down include a build up of limescale, an electrical fault or the machine not detecting the water tank correctly.

These can be fixed in a variety of ways, like those listed above. With my fixes, you should be able to get your Keurig coffee machine working to full capacity in no time.

And if you do feel like you need to replace your Keurig machine due to it failing altogether, check out this article. It’s a guide to the best Keurig models. 

Photo of author


Tim Lee is, as you might have guessed the founder of He is a former barista and a professional web publisher. He has now combined his knowledge and expertise in both subjects to create
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2 thoughts on “How to Fix the Keurig Coffee Machine Shutting Off”

  1. We fill our Keurig water reservoir to the Max line in the morning but don’t use all the water by bed. Should we leave that water in for the next day or empty it and put fresh water in the next morning?

    • Hey Linda,

      Leaving water in your Keurig reservoir overnight is generally safe and won’t cause the machine to stop working.

      It’s fine to use the remaining water the next day. As long as you don’t leave it for more than 48 hours to prevent bacterial growth or limescale buildup.

      For optimal hygiene and machine maintenance, it’s advisable to regularly clean the reservoir and descale the machine every 3 to 6 months

      Hope this answered your question!


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