Drip coffee machines, or filter coffee machines, are probably the most common type of coffee machine in all households, as traditionally. Until the advent of modern pod coffee machines, filter coffee machines were the most economical and practical. They are called filter coffee machines or drip coffee machines because of their particular method of making coffee (by slow filtering), which we will explain later in more detail.
In this report, we will give you the main clues about which drip coffee maker to buy, how the different ranges differ, and of course, which is the best drip coffee maker for your needs and your budget.
But before we go deeper into the knowledge and typologies of filter coffee machines, let’s take a look at the most popular drip coffee machines on the Internet:
- 1 Electric Drip Coffee Machines: Comparison – Which one to buy this year?
- 2 The essentials about filter coffee machines
- 3 How to choose a drip coffee maker: what to look for
- 4 Top 10 brands of drip coffee machines this year
- 4.1 Russell Hobbs drip coffee machines
- 4.2 Cecotec Coffee 66 drip coffee machines
- 4.3 Ufesa Avantis and Allegro drip coffee machines
- 4.4 Taurus drip coffee machines (Verona)
- 4.5 Melitta Drip Coffee Machines
- 4.6 Bosch CompactClass drip coffee machines
- 4.7 Philips Drip coffee machines (Daily Collection)
- 4.8 Moulinex Drip coffee machines
- 4.9 Orbegozo Máximo Aroma drip coffee makers
- 4.10 Jata drip coffee machines
- 5 The 5 best drip coffee machines of 2021: Analysis
- 6 Manual drip coffee machines: what they look like
- 7 Drip coffee machines with a built-in grinder
- 8 Drip coffee machines with Insulated Jug
- 9 Large drip coffee machines
- 10 4-cup (small) drip coffee makers
- 11 Single Drip Coffee Machines
- 12 Programmable drip coffee machines
- 13 High-end drip coffee machines
- 14 Designer drip coffee machines
- 15 Permanent filter coffee makers
- 16 Retro drip coffee machines
- 17 Drip and espresso machines: 2 in 1
- 18 Commercial drip coffee machines
- 19 The best drip coffee machines, according to the OCU
- 20 How does a home drip coffee machine work?
- 21 Components of a drip coffee machine
- 22 How do you use a drip coffee maker?
- 23 Filter types for drip coffee machines
- 24 Advantages and disadvantages of drip coffee machines
- 25 American coffee machines or filter coffee machines?
- 26 Drip coffee machines at Lidl
- 27 Spare parts for filter coffee machines
- 28 Frequently asked questions and problems with drip coffee machines
- 29 The cheapest drip coffee machines
- 30 Silvercrest drip coffee machine with thermos carafe
- 31 Lists of drip coffee machines
- 32 This year’s best-selling filter coffee machines
Electric Drip Coffee Machines: Comparison – Which one to buy this year?
When we talk about manual filter coffee machines, we are looking at one of the industry segments with the largest number of brands and models. Moreover, most of them share the same range and features (low-end drip coffee machines, simple and with few features that are preferred by consumers).
That is why we think that in order to decide which drip coffee maker to choose, it is advisable to first compare some of the models that are most popular on the Internet (of course, we cannot make a global comparison of all of them, because it would be unmanageable).
The essentials about filter coffee machines
Here you have all the articles we have prepared on the web about the main types of drip coffee machines, as well as other important elements and queries about this popular class of coffee machines:
How to choose a drip coffee maker: what to look for
This is a summary of the main qualities of a drip coffee machine, and the functions it may (or may not) have, which will affect its price. Remember: only look at the ones that really pay off.
- Thermal Jug: the stainless steel thermal carafe is used to keep the coffee hot for a long time (around two hours). Models with glass carafes usually have a heating plate on the base, which manages to keep the coffee at a decent temperature for 30-40 minutes maximum.
- Timer: allows you to set and program the exact time at which the coffee will be made, up to 24 hours in advance. There are quite inexpensive programmable filter coffee makers, so this function is usually a welcome extra.
- Capacity: the normal is 1 litre or 1.25 litres. About 8-10 cups. But there are smaller machines (4-6 cups) that are suitable for people living alone or for households where coffee consumption is low.
- Grinder: machines with the integrated grinder allow you to enjoy totally fresh, freshly ground filter coffee. The result is unbeatable, but none of these coffee machines goes below 100 pounds (sometimes even twice that amount).
A drip coffee machine that has none of these 4 features (what we would call a basic coffee maker) is around 20 or 25 pounds in price, depending on the brand.
Top 10 brands of drip coffee machines this year
There are a lot of brands of filter coffee machines on the market, and many times we buyers are guided by the manufacturer if we do not know much more about the models in question. In this section, we are going to give some brief notes about the best brands of filter coffee machines that exist today on the Internet so that you know how to orientate yourself. Or, at least, the most popular ones among our buyers.
Russell Hobbs drip coffee machines
Russell Hobbs is a British company in the coffee industry that specializes exclusively in this segment of drip machines. They are a real reference in the market, and their catalogue is the widest and most varied in Europe in this type of machine.
We urge you to visit their website to find out more about them all. Below is just a small sample of all the Russell Hobbs filter coffee machines on sale today.
Cecotec Coffee 66 drip coffee machines
There are only two Cecotec filter coffee machines on the market, the Coffee 66 Heat and the Smart. The first one has a digital screen, and the second one does not. Otherwise, the performance is similar between the two. They are two very economical machines with an excellent price/performance ratio.
Ufesa Avantis and Allegro drip coffee machines
Ufesa has a wide range of cheap drip coffee machines on the market. The truth is that all of them are very similar and have different features depending on what you need: the Ufesa Avantis Optima, the Avantis Termo with steel jug, etc. The Ufesa Activa model would be the most modest of the whole range.
Taurus drip coffee machines (Verona)
Taurus is another Spanish manufacturer whose machines are similar to Ufesa. The best known of these is the Taurus Verona drip coffee maker, available in two sizes (6 or 12 cups). A true classic whose premium version is called Taurus Verona Legend (with stainless steel finish). These are medium-low range machines, with a good quality-price ratio.
Melitta Drip Coffee Machines
Melitta is of German origin and is another of the world’s great references in the filter coffee sector. Melitta filter coffee machines are medium-high range, and if you’re looking to spend as little money as possible, this may not be the brand that suits you best.
This is one of the best brands of drip coffee makers, without a doubt, whose standard is the Melitta Look model (with many versions available). Here are some of them:
In short, a brand of filter coffee makers aimed especially at the most demanding users and those who really enjoy this method of making coffee in their day-to-day lives.
Bosch CompactClass drip coffee machines
Bosch is a brand of high-end drip coffee machines, which does not mean that its catalogue lacks more modest models. When buying a Bosch drip-coffee machine, we highlight the Bosch Compact Class series. These are machines with excellent workmanship and quality finishes, somewhat cheaper than the Bosch Comfort Line (top of the line in the industry, with all the letters).
Philips Drip coffee machines (Daily Collection)
The first is a drip coffee machine with a thermal carafe, and the second is one of the few filter coffee machines with a built-in grinder and is priced at the top of the range in this sector. Each of them is a leader in its segment. But don’t expect to spend too little money on one of these. Quality has to be paid for, and Philips filter coffee machines are no exception to that rule.
The most basic ones are the Philips Daily Collection line, available in various sizes and capacities.
Moulinex Drip coffee machines
We return to the Spanish filter coffee makers, and we do so with Moulinex, whose machines are similar to the Ufesa and Taurus machines we have seen before.
The Moulinex Subito or Principio filter coffee machines are their two most outstanding models, but both have little difference. The capacity of 10 cups, plastic body and glass jars are the distinctive features of these very economical drip coffee machines.
Orbegozo Máximo Aroma drip coffee makers
Orbegozo filter coffee machines are among the cheapest on the market. The fact is that all the manufacturers bet on this type of low-cost product, which is logical since filter coffee is not as appreciated among consumers as it is in Central Europe.
When you go to buy an Orbegozo drip coffee maker, you are likely to come across an Orbegozo Maximo Aroma model, the most extensive and well-known line of machines from this Spanish company.
Jata drip coffee machines
Jata filter coffee machines have similar characteristics to those of other Spanish manufacturers: very economical price, basic features, and few complications when handling them. There are three basic models on sale: the Jata drip coffee maker CA288, the CA289 and the CA290. Then there is the CA390, which is bigger and more powerful and has better finishes.
The 5 best drip coffee machines of 2021: Analysis
If you’ve ever wondered which is the best drip coffee maker on the market, the answer will vary depending on your budget and needs. By far, the most powerful filter coffee machines with a built-in grinder are the best, but they also represent an investment that not all consumers on the Internet are able to afford.
To help you decide which drip coffee maker to buy, here are some of the best filter coffee makers you can find on Amazon Internet today. We can assure you that they are all good drip coffee machines, but if you want, you can click on their respective review buttons to find out more about each one.
The Rowenta Adagio filter coffee machine is a very special case in our industry, as it is the only coffee machine marketed by this company (there are no other models). Despite this, it has managed to position itself as one of the market’s reference models.
The Rowenta Adagio drip coffee maker has a capacity of 1.25 litres and is available in various finishes (white or black body) and with a thermal carafe also in different colours. It is one of the most robust and functional machines on the market.
- Filter coffee machine in an elegant and stylish design.
- Shockproof stainless steel vacuum flask keeps your coffee warm and aromatic for up to 4 hours.
- Capacity of 1.25 L coffee for 10-15 cups.
- Illuminated on/off pressure switch and automatic shut-off after the brewing process is complete.
- Swivelling and removable filter holder for easy filling and cleaning
Moccamaster KBG Select filter coffee machine
Moccamaster is a very special brand of coffee machines, as they have a very particular design and all of them, without exception, are very high-end filter machines. Not for nothing does any Moccamaster drip coffee machine model go for around 200 pounds in price.
Here we’ll talk about the Moccamaster KBG Select, which has a capacity of 1.25 litres and is handmade in a traditional way. Its unique copper heater ensures that the water temperature remains constant at around 95ºC, just the right point for the coffee to filter out with the perfect aroma.
- Included components: 1 x Overflow coffee maker from Moccamaster KBG 741 Select - Matt Black, user manual
Melitta Look Therm Deluxe
The Melitta Look model is one of the great European standards for filter coffee machines. It comes in many versions, from the most basic to the most advanced, and the one we highlight in this ranking of the best is the top of the range of all Melitta Look drip coffee makers: the Therm Deluxe.
It is characterised and distinguished from the rest by its stainless steel thermal jug, its 1.25-litre tank and, of course, the impeccable finishes that characterise the German company.
- Wake up with a mild or strong cup of coffee rich in flavour, Indicator on water tank for 10 large cups (125ml) or 15 small cups (85 ml)
- Exceptional taste: Optimal temperature preparation, Adjustable coffee intensity thanks to Aroma Selector, Keeps coffee hot for 2 hours thanks to robust insulated Jug with reinforced double wall...
- Easily handle Jug with one hand, Lid and detachable anti-drip filter, Compatible with 1 x 4 filters, Light up On/Off button, Storage in base for adjustable cable length, Handle, Stainless steel...
- Preserve your machine and the taste of coffee: Descaling program, Calcification display, Programmable water hardness level, Machine washable detachable filter and Jug, Auto-off feature, 1000 W,...
- Contents: 1 Melitta Look IV Therm DeLuxe Filter Coffee Machine, Black/Brushed Steel, 1011-14, 5 Original Melitta White Coffee Filters, Weight: 5.3 lbs, Dimensions (L x H x D) : 9 x 13.7 x 8.2 inches,...
Philips Grind&Brew: with grinder
If you are looking for the best filter coffee machine, surely, in absolute terms, the answer is one with an integrated grinder. And in the market, there are two practically identical ones with this function: one from the Russell Hobbs firm and this 1.2 litre Philips Grind&Brew filter coffee maker.
This is a very long-lived model, which has been on the market for many years and has been updated many times (so don’t be surprised if you come across different nomenclatures).
The grinder allows you to enjoy the unmistakable aroma of freshly ground coffee in every cup, and you can also use the timer (to set the coffee maker at the time you want), and its exclusive spraying technique that allows the water to filter evenly over the entire surface of the filter.
Drip coffee machine Bosch Comfort Line
We finish with the house Bosch, which also has a wide range of filter coffee machines on the market, and from all of them, we highlight its Comfort Line series. The Bosch Comfort Line coffee machines are high-capacity machines (ideal for those looking for a large coffee machine), available in various finishes, and with an integrated descaling function that is rare in this segment.
- Power: 1000-1200 W. Aroma + for individual adjustment of the coffee aroma. Automatic shut-off after the end of the brewing process. Transparent, removable water tank with a handle, visible water level...
- Removable Tilt Filter (1x4). Protection against dripping coffee. Easy to store. Complementary color: black. Device dimensions (mm): 355 x 285 x 230 mm. Number of cups (large / small): 8/12.
- Net weight (kg): 2.335 kg. Type of jug: thermos. Protections: temperature limiter. Water level indicator: readable from the outside. Plug type: Type C/EF - 2 pin (Europlug/FR-DE Hybrid).
- Connected load (W): 1200 W. Frequency (Hz): 50/60 Hz. Plug type: Schuko / Gardy plug with earthing. Voltage (V): 220-240V.
After reviewing these recommended drip coffee machines, it’s time to get to know some of the main types of filter coffee machines you can find.
Manual drip coffee machines: what they look like
All the models that we evaluate on this page are electric drip coffee machines; that is: the water is heated by a boiler that takes its energy from the electrical outlet. There are other types of manual drip coffee machines, which make coffee in a similar way (by dripping or filtering), but which do not run on electricity and therefore do not emit any heat of their own. They must be used with water that has been boiled or heated to the right temperature.
These manual filter coffee machines are more generically called drippers, pour-over or drip cones, and to find out more about them, we invite you to click on the guide we have just linked to.
Drip coffee machines with a built-in grinder
These machines are at the top of the range in this segment. Such is their exclusivity that the number of models on the market is reduced to no more than four or five, and most of them you will not usually find in your physical shop.
The reason is that a filter coffee machine with an integrated grinder is considerably more expensive than a normal one, and the consumer on the Internet is not usually willing to pay such a large amount of money for such a machine (this is not the case with espressos, for example; it is a question of culture and consumer habits).
A drip coffee maker that grinds coffee, apart from the grinder on top of it, of course, usually also has a timer (for programming its operation up to 24 hours in advance), and its capacity is also large. There are a few exceptions, such as the drip coffee maker with a grinder from TM-Electron, which are smaller and allow you to enjoy the aroma of freshly ground coffee for a much more affordable price.
The benchmark brand for this type of drip coffee machines with a built-in grinder is undoubtedly Russell Hobbs. The British can boast of having several models with integrated grinders in their vast catalogue.
Drip coffee machines with Insulated Jug
Drip coffee makers with thermal jugs are characterised by the stainless steel carafe that serves, as its name suggests, as a thermal carafe: it keeps the coffee hot freshly brewed for about two hours.
This is a peculiar and unique feature of filter coffee machines, which have tanks of more than one litre of coffee and do not make individual coffees, but always make the whole tank. And of course, that’s a lot of coffee to drink in one go. If you’re tired of always drinking your filter coffee overheated, you might want to buy a thermal drip coffee maker.
Filter coffee machines with thermal carafes usually have less capacity than those with glass carafes. And of course, they are a little more expensive (but not very expensive).
The vast majority of thermo drip coffee machines only have a thermal carafe attachment, i.e. you cannot choose between using a glass or a thermal carafe indiscriminately. Some machines do have different and independent versions of the same model (with or without a thermal carafe), but normally you cannot use both types of carafe on the same machine.
Large drip coffee machines
The standard size of a filter coffee maker is about 1.25 litres (about 10 cups of coffee). But of course, there is a market segment (not very large either, it has to be said) for large filter coffee machines.
We can define a large filter coffee machine as one that has a water tank of 1.5 litres or more. If you are interested in buying a large drip-coffee machine, here are some examples of what you can find on Amazon today:
4-cup (small) drip coffee makers
At the opposite end to the above are the small filter coffee machines, which normally have a capacity of 4-6 cups of coffee. The tank size of these 4-cup filter coffee machines is usually 0.6 litres, and they are the ideal appliance for users living alone or for very small flats.
Interestingly, they are sometimes more expensive than 10-cup filter coffee machines precisely because they do not respect the standard size. Below are some references for your guidance.
There are also some machines that are manufactured in two sizes (6 or 10 cups) so that you can choose which one you want.
As an intermediate option, it should be noted that some 10-cup drip coffee machines have a function for making 4 or fewer cups (i.e. only a part of the water tank, not the whole tank).
Single Drip Coffee Machines
Your own name says so. These are American coffee makers (they are also known as this) who make filter coffee not by full tanks but from cup to cup. In other words: one cup = one tank = one cup.
Don’t get confused, though: individual filter coffee machines usually deposit the coffee directly into a thermal cup… whose capacity is usually about half a litre. In other words, don’t think about the typical “coffee cup” as we know it on the Internet.
Would you like to buy a drip coffee machine for one person? Well, these are the best options available right now:
Programmable drip coffee machines
The ultimate in convenience: drip coffee makers with a timer that allows you to set the exact moment the machine will start… and make sure you enjoy the hot, freshly brewed coffee.
The good news is that programmable filter coffee machines do not have to be very expensive. This is a widespread feature in this segment, and therefore it is easy to find models with a more than attractive price/performance ratio. If you want to try one out, have a look at our guide to filter coffee machines with a timer, or have a look at some of the models below:
High-end drip coffee machines
On the Internet, they are not very well known because we appreciate filter coffee less. But there are manufacturers of drip coffee machines that specialize only in high-end items. Some of the best brands of drip coffee machines in this respect are:
High-end filter coffee machines have a number of common characteristics that justify this name and that distinguish them greatly from the rest of the market. Some of these features are:
- Maximum quality in the choice of materials and finishes.
- Boilers or heating systems of maximum precision or made of stainless steel to ensure an optimum water temperature at the time of filtering.
- Advanced water spraying systems (e.g. water is sprayed or sprayed evenly over the entire ground coffee cone, instead of being poured only in one place).
- Selection of aroma (intensity) of the filter coffee.
- The already mentioned drip coffee machines with integrated grinder.
Examples of the best high-end drip coffee machines are as follows:
As you can see, we are talking about specimens that are close to or, in some cases, exceed 200 pounds in price. Almost nothing to the apparatus.
Designer drip coffee machines
Well, this is a somewhat abstract concept, but it is a clear reality: more and more readers are looking for designer filter coffee machines to match the style of their kitchen.
Proof of this is the vintage drip coffee machines (we will talk about these later), those with brightly coloured bodywork, or those that do not follow the typical layout with the water tank at the back. In short, original drip coffee machines give a touch of personality to your daily life.
Anyway, there are a lot of factors that influence to consider an original or design drip coffee maker, but here you have some examples that illustrate what we mean:
Permanent filter coffee makers
Many users still use classic paper filters on their coffee machines, but the vast majority of new models already have a permanent mesh filter.
This is a filter that does the same function as the paper ones, but it is reusable: you only have to wash it, and you always use the same one. They are usually made of plastic or nylon mesh (there are different qualities), and there are many models to buy separately.
We are not going to give examples of specific machines, because as we say, the vast majority of new products on the market are drip coffee machines with a permanent filter.
Retro drip coffee machines
A vintage filter coffee maker has a very particular aesthetic, different from the others. Usually, the retro design in a drip coffee machine is achieved with a combination of bright colours and anaesthetic in the head (or main body of the machine) that reminds the classic machines of the ’50s and ’60s of the 20th century.
Its features are usually those of a standard machine (in some cases, they have a timer, but little else), and its price is logically somewhat higher because the design of a vintage filter coffee maker also has to be paid for.
If you want to buy a retro design drip coffee maker, how about these options?
Drip and espresso machines: 2 in 1
What if there are people in your house who like filter coffee and others who need yes or no espresso in the morning? Do you buy two different coffee machines? No, it’s much smarter to buy a drip coffee machine and an espresso machine at the same time, or combi machines. You enjoy both systems in the same machine.
To find out more about them, go to the page we have just linked to, but to get straight to the point, here is a list of the best drip and espresso machines on the market:
Commercial drip coffee machines
They are not widely used in all parts of the world, but in certain regions of the globe (especially in the Americas), commercial filter coffee machines are the preferred choice of businesses, hotels and similar establishments. We already know that in the US much more filter coffee is consumed than in other countries. It is necessary to adapt to the demands of the customers.
The best commercial drip coffee machines look almost nothing like the domestic ones. They only have in common the brewing method, but everything else (capacity, size, aesthetics…) may sound Chinese to us the first time we see one.
If you want to know the best brands of industrial drip coffee makers, the most important reference is undoubtedly the Bravilor or Bravilor Bonamat coffee makers. Their Mondo and Novo 2 models are clear examples of filter coffee machines for the hotel and catering industry, whose characteristics and prices far exceed the competence of a domestic machine. In some cases, they even have two or three independent dispensers or tanks to make several preparations simultaneously.
The prestigious Technivorm company, which markets Moccamaster drip coffee machines, also has some models of industrial filter machines on the market, such as the Thermoking 3000.
Some of these examples are discussed in more detail in our guide of coffee machines for free buffets.
The best drip coffee machines, according to the OCU
You already know that the OCU organises its own rankings of household appliances, with its own criteria and measurements (which usually do not necessarily coincide with ours). It is not our intention to evaluate or criticise their work, but as we know that many readers are also guided by this list, we are going to summarise here which are the best filter coffee machines according to the OCU in 2021.
At the moment, there is no specific list of the best OCU drip coffee machines, although the OCU does give a series of guidelines and recommendations (very generic and a bit too general, to be honest) about what a consumer should look for in one of these machines. It is clear that they talk about all the products on the market, but they are not really experts in any of them.
For example, in the OCU, they mention as a possible disadvantage of filter coffee machines that they are not practical if you want to make a single cup of coffee, ignoring that some models do allow this, or for example overlooking the existence of single-serve drip coffee machines, which we have already talked about here.
Without wishing to discredit the work of the OCU, we believe that it is better to look at websites such as ours, which are truly specialised in the product you are looking for.
How does a home drip coffee machine work?
To help you understand more about how a drip coffee machine works, we use this interesting educational video:
Home drip coffee machines differ from espresso machines mainly because the water passes through the ground coffee. In espresso machines, the water is injected with high pressure through the coffee, which needs to be very finely ground and pressed as otherwise, the water would hardly capture the flavours and nuances of the beans.
In filter coffee machines, on the other hand, the hot water flows very slowly through the coffee in the filter. This coffee needs to be the medium ground because if it is too fine, the water cannot pass through well. As the paper filter is conical in shape, the water that has already been converted into coffee will fall through the end of the filter. Gravity does the rest of the work.
Drop by drop, the coffee will fall into the container that these coffee machines have set up for this purpose under the filters. This is usually a large-capacity glass or stainless steel decanter.
And now that you know how a filter coffee maker works, it’s time to find out what its basic components are:
Components of a drip coffee machine
A drip coffee machine can have different aspects, designs and configurations, but it necessarily needs to have 3 components to be able to function as such:
- Water tank: the water tanks of drip coffee machines are usually large as all the water is used in each preparation. In espresso or capsule coffee machines, a full tank can last several preparations, as only one cup is made at a time. The water in the tank is heated and then passed through the coffee in the filter.
- Coffee filter: The coffee filter is the element that gives this type of coffee maker its name. The ground coffee (not to ground) is deposited in the filter, through which the water will slowly pass and come out, already converted into coffee, at the bottom end of the filter.
- Thermal jug: Due to the effect of gravity, the coffee coming out of the filter drips and falls slowly into a carafe placed at the bottom of the coffee maker. This carafe must be large (normally the same size as the water tank) and can be made of glass or steel. The latter material better preserves the temperature of the coffee stored there.
How do you use a drip coffee maker?
Filter coffee machines or drip coffee machines are very easy to handle, as most of them do not have any options or strange configurations. The first step, once we have made sure that all the components are assembled and fitted, is to add water to the tank.
Then we have to place the filter in the compartment intended for this purpose (usually paper filters are used) and add the ground coffee of medium thickness (this detail is important) inside the filter in the amount we want or that the manufacturer specifies. A quantity of 40 grams per litre is recommended… but this is very generic and depends a lot on each machine, each coffee… and each palate.
Once we have the water, the filter and the coffee ready, we close the filter cover and start the coffee maker. The only thing left to do is to wait for the water to warm up – it takes longer than other coffee machines, as it takes an amount of water equivalent to several cups of coffee – and then to let the coffee drip into the thermal carafe.
Filter types for drip coffee machines
We have already said that a fundamental component in drip coffee machines is the filter they use. There are filters of different types, or rather different materials (paper, cloth, plastic or metal), and not all of them produce the same results in the coffee, so it is important that you know all of them.
If your coffee maker uses paper or cloth filters (usually the ones you have used all your life), the coffee will be much more filtered, with no deposits or sediments. It is, therefore, a much lighter coffee. On the other hand, if you use a metal filter (which is reusable), the holes are a bit thicker and allow more sediment to pass into the final coffee. The result is a coffee with a little more body.
By the way, if you use cloth filters, don’t forget to cure it the first time; that is, the first coffee you prepare should not be drunk but thrown away. From the second time on, you will avoid the unpleasant sensation that your coffee has traces of taste in the filter fabric.
Fabric filters should be thoroughly rinsed and dried before use.
To learn more about this topic, be sure to review our filter guide for coffee machines.
Advantages and disadvantages of drip coffee machines
Perhaps the biggest advantage of drip coffee machines is that they can prepare a large amount of coffee with just one brew (up to 10-12 cups maximum), while espresso machines only prepare single cups. For this reason, drip coffee machines are much more practical if we have to prepare a lot of coffee, if we are a lot of drinkers at home, or if we are going to receive visitors at coffee time. They are also comfortable and clean.
Their biggest drawback? Well, it’s obvious that if you like Italian espressos, very pure and with a lot of cream on top, you’re not going to get it with a drip coffee maker.
The other disadvantage of drip coffee machines is the time it takes to process the coffee. They are not instantaneous, and the process takes several minutes. If you need a coffee on the spot, you’d better have it prepared beforehand.
Some users also complain about the fragility of glass jars, but this is not always the fault of the machines.
American coffee machines or filter coffee machines?
What is the right name? We often confuse American coffee machines with filter coffee machines because the reality is that filter coffee is American par excellence, and the machines preferred in that market are precisely filtered coffee machines.
We prepared a guide with the best Americano coffee machines to try to draw clearly the lines that distinguish them from the traditional drip coffee machines we use in Europe.
A clarifying detail is, without a doubt, the inclusion of the thermal cup that allows you to take your freshly brewed coffee (Americano, of course) down the street.
Drip coffee machines at Lidl
The filter coffee machines at Lidl have played a leading role in recent years, to the extent that the well-known German supermarket firm has marketed two models in this segment: a stainless steel thermos jug (the year 2015) and a more basic white model called the Silvercrest Design Edition drip coffee machine.
The stainless steel model (the popular Lidl coffee machine with thermos jug) is discussed later in this guide. The video above belongs to the much less ambitious Design Edition model.
In any case, Silvercrest seems to have forgotten about filter machines lately, and has opted more for espresso machines.
Spare parts for filter coffee machines
Drip coffee machines have some fairly fragile, easily replaceable components, so it’s easy to get spare parts when you need them. The most common spare parts for drip coffee machines are the filters, and of course, the jugs.
The filters are universal (they can be used for any model, although they must be purchased in the correct size), while the filter coffee machine jugs can be exclusive to the manufacturer or generic.
Drip coffee machine jugs
When buying a spare cup for your drip coffee machine, you should make sure it is the same model and brand as the one you have at home. If you opt for a universal glass jug for your coffee machine, you must make sure that the closing mechanism fits perfectly because often, it is not enough that only the size matches.
We recommend that you choose the official glass carafe from the manufacturer of your coffee machine whenever possible.
Permanent filters for drip coffee machines
Permanent mesh filters do the same job as paper filters, but they have the convenience of being reusable, so you don’t have to change filters and throw away the used filter every time you make coffee.
Most coffee makers come with their own included, but if you break it or just want to try a higher quality one, here’s a list of the most common filter replacements for coffee makers on Amazon:
Paper filters for drip coffee machines
On the other hand, if you are one of those who still use paper filters, the choice is much easier. And you’ll have to constantly replace them so that the operation will be familiar to you.
To buy the right paper filter for your coffee machine, look at the size. 1×4 filters are the normal ones (large or medium filter coffee machines), while 1×2 filters are smaller and are used in small drip coffee machines. Once you know what size filter your machine needs, you can use any brand.
Frequently asked questions and problems with drip coffee machines
Breakdowns in filter coffee machines are common in the long term (as with any small electrical appliance in your home), but fortunately, repairs are usually simple. Also, many models are inexpensive – sometimes it pays more to buy a new one than to eat your coconut, thinking about how to fix your drip coffee maker.
In this section, we are going to give some notes and suggestions on the most frequent questions asked by users of this type of machine.
1.- Drip coffee maker or Italian?
Italian coffee machines or mocha machines are cheaper, but they make coffee by pressure (espresso). This is not the same method of preparation as drip or filtering, so the choice depends on what type of coffee you like best.
2.- What is the best ground coffee for a drip coffee maker?
Electric filter coffee makers should be used with medium ground coffee (neither coarse nor fine), ideally grind your own coffee beans at home, or opt for a filter machine with a grinder. In either case, buy the best coffee beans you can, and grind them just before you start the machine.
3.- How do I clean the drip coffee maker?
Apart from the usual process of decalcifying the coffee machine, you should rinse and dry the carafe very well after making the coffee. It does not matter whether it is made of glass or steel: avoid putting it in the dishwasher and wash it by hand with a non-abrasive scouring pad.
4.- How do you decalcify a drip coffee maker?
The million-dollar question. Fortunately, the process is not very different from that of decalcifying any other type of coffee machine. You must use a descaler liquid in the water tank and start the coffee machine to make several deposits. Once you have done this, rinse and wash both the tank and the carafe, where the result is deposited very well.
5.- Are there drip coffee machines and capsules?
In our combi coffee machine section, you will find several hybrid models, but the most common combination is the espresso and drip coffee machine. However, there is one machine that is out of the norm, and that makes the answer to this question affirmative: the Senseo Switch. It can be used to make single-serve or filter coffee. Whatever you prefer, whatever the occasion.
6.- My drip coffee machine is clogged
The most common reason for blockage in drip coffee machines is the calcification or accumulation of sediment in the machine’s tank or the internal pipes. In the long term, if you do not clean the drip coffee machine, the pump will eventually become clogged for this reason, and consequently, the water will not go up through the filling pipe.
The cheapest drip coffee machines
Here is an example of the cheapest filter coffee machines on the market. We have located and filtered those models that cost less than 20 pounds. These are almost always modelled with a plastic body and without advanced functions. The capacity is usually between 1 litre and 1.25 litres of the tank, and they all have glass jugs (not thermal).
Which is the cheapest filter coffee maker on the market? Well, the answer varies depending on the specific offers and the market situation, but if you look hard enough, you will find a machine with a little known brand and small size (even individual ones). For complete information, here is our guide to cheap drip coffee machines.
If we have to highlight some of the best brands of cheap filter coffee machines, we will stay with these four: Cecotec, Silvercrest, Aicook and TM Electron.
The first of them, Cecotec, we have already talked about at the beginning of this page. It only has two models in its catalogue, but both are very economical and have an excellent quality-price ratio. The other three will be discussed below:
Aicook drip coffee machines
Aicook is a Chinese company known for its low-cost coffee machines (in keeping with the cliché of Asian companies. Their speciality is not drip machines, but they have two very cheap models in their ranks: the Aicook mini drip machine, its characteristic blue colour, and a programmable model that is now out of print on the Internet.
TM Electron filter coffee machines
TM-Electron drip coffee machines also stand out because of their low price. TM-Electron is a Spanish company, and of all its machines, we highlight two of the most basic ones, with interesting finishes (stainless steel included) but below the 20 pounds barrier. Both are of small capacity (from 4 to 6 cups).
Silvercrest drip coffee machine with thermos carafe
In recent years, Silvercrest has tended to focus more on espresso machines, such as the Lidl espresso machine, as they are more popular than filter machines, and we know that this brand always goes for the sun that heats up the most (it tends to play it safe).
The last Silvercrest drip coffee machine to be marketed in recent years did not have a thermos carafe. Silvercrest Design Edition was its name, and as you will see, it is a super basic machine… and super cheap, of course. That’s why it is included in this section on its own merits.
Lists of drip coffee machines
Finally, here is a complete list of all the drip coffee machines reviewed to date on our website:
This year’s best-selling filter coffee machines
Do you want to know which is the best selling drip coffee machine on the Internet today? Well, it’s probably neither the most powerful nor the best performing, but what all these models have in common is that they are drip coffee machines with a great value for the price. No exceptions: