How To Clean Nespresso Vertuo: Step-by-Step Guide

Published: 06/27/23 •  10 min read
How to clean Nespresso Vertuo: Step-by-Step Guide

Nespresso machines are a delight to have at home. They are compact, versatile, and produce delicious espresso.

A Nespresso Vertuo machine is a popular choice for coffee lovers. It offers a range of delicious coffee flavors in a convenient and easy-to-use device.

However, it is essential to clean your Nespresso Vertuo machine regularly to maintain the quality and taste of each cup. Proper cleaning and maintenance are crucial in extending the machine’s lifespan. It enhances the taste of the coffee, keeps the machine hygienic, and keeps your Vertuo from not working.

Moreover, regular cleaning ensures that your Nespresso Vertuo offers an optimal coffee brewing experience.

However, learning the proper technique and steps for effective cleaning is essential. The main components to focus on during cleaning include the drip tray, capsule container, and water tank.

Additionally, the coffee machine requires descaling. You must regularly descale your Nespresso based on the manufacturer’s recommendations.

If you are a noob in the cleaning department, this article will provide a straightforward guide on effectively and efficiently cleaning a Nespresso Vertuo machine.

Moreover, you will find detailed instructions about the descaling process to keep your Vertuo machine in top-notch condition. Read on!

If you have a different Nespresso model, read one of these instead:

And if you need other troubleshooting for your Nespresso:

Basic Cleaning and Maintenance of the Nespresso Vertuo Coffee Machine

By following a cleaning routine, you can ensure that your Nespresso Vertuo machine stays clean and functions optimally for a long time. Regular cleaning and maintenance not only prolong the life of your machine but also ensure the best-tasting coffee every time.

 A Nespresso Vertuo Coffee Maker placed on table

What you will need

Prepare the Coffee Machine

Before starting to descale a Nespresso Vertuo, you must perform some preparatory steps. These steps are essential to make the descaling process more efficient:

Step 1: Removing and Cleaning the Water Tank

The water tank is a crucial component of your Nespresso Vertuo machine. To clean the water reservoir, follow these steps:

  1. Turn off the coffee machine and unplug it.

  2. Remove the water tank by lifting it from the base of the coffee machine.

  3. Empty any remaining water and rinse the tank with clean water.

  4. If necessary, use a soft cloth or sponge with mild soap and water to gently clean the inside of the tank.

  5. Rinse with clean water and dry thoroughly before reattaching the water tank to the machine.

Adding fresh water to the Nespresso reservoir after cleaning it

Note: Use only clean, cold tap water in the tank to ensure optimal brewing performance.

Step 2: Cleaning the Drip Tray and Capsule Container

The drip tray and capsule container helps keep your Nespresso machine clean by catching spills and used capsules. Follow these steps to clean and maintain them:

  1. Remove the drip tray and capsule container from the coffee machine.

  2. Empty any liquid from the drip tray and dispose of any used capsules from the capsule container.

  3. Wash both components with warm, soapy water and a soft cloth or sponge.

  4. Rinse the removable parts with clean water.

  5. Let the removable parts dry before reassembling and placing them back into the machine.

Attaching the drip tray to the Nespresso Brewer after emptying its contents

Step 3: Clean the Exterior

It is essential to clean the exterior regularly for your coffee machine to look clean, aesthetically pleasing, and in good shape. Unplug the coffee machine and remove any K-cup. Use a damp cloth with mild soap and water to gently wipe the exterior surfaces. Rinse the machine with clean water and towel dry.

Descaling the Nespresso Vertuo Machine

Apart from regular cleaning, descaling your Nespresso Vertuo (or Nespresso Inissia) after 250 cups or 3 months is essential. Doing this will efficiently remove mineral buildup or coffee residue from the machine and provide you with the best-tasting coffee.

Follow these easy steps to efficiently descale your Nespresso machine:

Step 1: Choosing a Descaling Solution

There are various descaling solutions available on the market. You can use the Nespresso descaling solution as it’s specifically designed for their machines and ensures optimal cleaning. 

Nespresso Descaling Solution for all Nespresso machine models

You can also use white vinegar, critic acid, and lemon juice to prepare a descaling solution at home. However, you must use them in the correct proportion. Otherwise, these ingredients may damage the machine and void the warranty.

Step 2: Performing the Descaling Cycle

Before descaling a Nespresso Vertuo:

Ensure the water reservoir is empty and clean. Fill it with 0.8 liters of fresh water and add one unit of the Nespresso descaling solution. Next, place an empty 1-liter container under the coffee outlet to collect the solution during the cycle.

To begin the descaling cycle, ensure you turn off your Nespresso machine. Press and hold the button with the lever in the down position for three seconds. An orange light should appear, indicating the machine is in descaling mode and ready for the descale cycle.

Lock the lever and press the button to start the descaling process. The coffee machine will begin dispensing the descaling solution through the coffee outlet into the container.

Step 3: Performing Rinse Cycles

Once the descaling cycle is complete, rinse the water reservoir to remove any remaining descaling solution. Fill the reservoir with fresh water and place the container under the coffee outlet.

To remove any residual descaling solution, press the brew button again and allow the coffee machine to dispense fresh water through the coffee outlet.

After the rinse cycle, turn the machine off to exit the descaling menu.

By following the above steps and using the appropriate descaling solution, you can effectively maintain your Nespresso machine and ensure it consistently delivers excellent coffee.

A Nespresso machine dispensing water during rinse cycle

How Often Should You Descale Your Nespresso Vertuo?

To properly maintain your Nespresso Vertuo machine and prevent mineral build-up, it’s essential to descale it regularly. Descaling will remove lime scale and other residues that can accumulate inside your coffee maker.

The frequency of descaling depends on the hardness of the water and the number of capsules used. Nespresso recommends descaling your coffee machine every three months or after 300 capsules, whichever comes first.

Maintenance Tips For Your Nespresso Vertuo Machine

Here are a few essential maintenance tips for your Nespresso Vertuo to work more efficiently:

Addressing Water Flow Issues

Various factors, including debris, lime scale build-up, or water pressure issues, can cause water flow problems in a Nespresso Vertuo. To address these issues, follow these steps:

  1. Perform a cleaning cycle

Rinse the water tank and fill it with fresh drinking water. Ensure there are no used capsules in the holder, then turn the machine on and press the brew button three times within two seconds. Water should begin flowing out within two minutes.

Adding fresh water to the Nespresso reservoir for a cleaning cycle
  1. Clean the coffee spout and external parts.

Regular maintenance includes cleaning the coffee outlet and external parts of the machine. You can use a soft brush and odorless detergent to prevent damage or lingering smells.

  1. Change the water filter

Check the filter for debris, and replace it with a new one. You must change the water filter every three to six months to maintain your machine’s longevity.

Preventing and Removing Mold Growth

Mold can develop in a Nespresso machine if not adequately maintained and cleaned. To prevent mold growth in your coffee machine, follow these steps:

  1. Eject the used K-cup into the pod container. Regularly remove used capsules from the container to prevent mold build-up.

  2. Wipe down the machine’s exterior and clean the machine head using a soft cloth and odorless detergent.

  3. Opt for gentle cleaning solutions rather than harsh chemicals or abrasive materials, which can damage the machine.

If your coffee machine has mold, consider registering your machine and contacting the manufacturer via e-mail for further advice on proper cleaning and maintenance procedures.

Improving Coffee Taste and Quality

To enjoy the best quality coffee from your Nespresso Vertuo, follow these tips:

  1. Ensure that your machine produces hot water and steam to make tastier coffee. If the coffee is cold, contact Nespresso for warranty claims, as the heating block might need replacement.

  2. A well-brewed Nespresso coffee has a rich crema. Consider descaling the machine if the crema appears burnt or lacking in quality.

  3. Regularly clean excess coffee grinds from the machine to improve coffee taste and quality. Use a soft brush to prevent damage.

By following these troubleshooting tips and regular maintenance guidelines, your Nespresso Vertuo coffee machine will continue to produce high-quality coffee.

Cleaning Nespresso Vertuo Accessories

Accessories like milk frothers, drip trays, and pod containers of Nespresso Vertuo also require frequent attention from your side. Here’s how you can regularly clean these parts:

Cleaning the Milk Frother

The milk frother is an essential accessory for Nespresso Vertuo users who enjoy milk-based beverages. It is crucial to clean the milk frother to maintain the hygiene and working of your coffee machine.

Start by detaching the frother from the machine and disassembling its parts. Carefully remove the whisk and any other removable components. Use warm water and mild dish soap to clean the bowl, whisk, and lid.

A Nespresso milk frother disassembled for cleaning purposes

Avoid using abrasive materials or harsh chemicals, as they may damage the surface or leave a residue that could affect the taste of your beverages. After washing these parts, rinse them thoroughly to eliminate any soap residue, and dry them with a soft cloth.

Use a damp cloth to wipe the steam wand down after every use. Gently remove any milk residue stuck to the wand, ensuring the attachment is clean and free from build-up.

Cleaning Other Accessories

Nespresso coffee machines come with various accessories that require periodic cleaning and care. Here are some guidelines for looking after these items:

Empty and rinse the reservoir regularly to remove impurities and ensure a fresh taste. Consider using filtered water in your machine to minimize mineral build-up.

Remove the drip tray and cup platform from the Nespresso Vertuo Plus, clean them using warm water and mild dish soap, and dry them before reassembling them. It helps prevent any bacteria growth and ensures a clean brewing environment.

Empty the pod container frequently, as leaving used capsules inside for an extended period may result in mold or unpleasant odors. Wash the container with warm, soapy water and let it dry before putting it back into the machine.

Using a soft, damp cloth, gently wipe down the machine’s exterior to maintain its appearance and remove any dust or debris.


It is necessary to descale a Nespresso Vertuo to ensure a consistently delicious coffee experience for years.

It only takes 20 minutes, a little water, and some descaling fluid to thoroughly clean your coffee maker and make it ready to use.

Fill the water container, turn the lock lever until the orange light flashes rapidly, and press the button again. All you need to do is wait for the machine to descale independently.

Descaling your coffee machine will remove scale build-up and residue, improving the quality of coffee.

Hans Mast

Hans loves coffee and loves teaching about coffee