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Old 08-06-09, 08:37 AM   #1
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French press coffee drinkers...a cleaning question for you.

I was recently given a nice french press as a house warming gift. It has been lovely to be able to enjoy really good coffee in the morning. My question is: How often do you take it all apart to clean it? How do you go about this cleaning?
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Old 08-06-09, 08:40 AM   #2
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As far as I know you just rinse them out.
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Old 08-06-09, 08:42 AM   #3
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I wash mine after every use with soap and water. Nothing special.
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Old 08-06-09, 08:43 AM   #4
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I clean the whole thing every time I use it w/ soap and water. The only tricky part in cleaning is the mesh screen assembly. Mine is threaded onto the end of the plunger shaft and I can simply remove it and wash each part and get all the extra coffee grains out of it.
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Old 08-06-09, 08:48 AM   #5
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I wash mine after every use with soap and water. Nothing special.
Do you take it apart to clean it every time?
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Old 08-06-09, 08:49 AM   #6
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I clean the whole thing every time I use it w/ soap and water. The only tricky part in cleaning is the mesh screen assembly. Mine is threaded onto the end of the plunger shaft and I can simply remove it and wash each part and get all the extra coffee grains out of it.
Mine is threaded onto the end also. I've had a difficult time getting it back together correctly so that I can adjust the size of the openings.
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Old 08-06-09, 09:06 AM   #7
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Do you take it apart to clean it every time?
I do, it doesn't take too long. But we don't use it daily and when we do it's after dinner, so not like we're rushing out the door for work or anything.
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Old 08-06-09, 09:08 AM   #8
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I usually only rinse well and run water on plunger in all directions to make sure all coffee remains are gone.

I only take it apart and clean it better with a little soap and rinsing about once every few weeks or so.

My rule of thumb is if you can start to see brown residue on the filter/screen part after rinsing then its overdue for a take apart cleaning.
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Old 08-06-09, 09:13 AM   #9
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i take mine apart and throw it in the dishwasher, every time.
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Old 08-06-09, 09:14 AM   #10
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Full disassembly and washing with soap and/or in dishwasher every time is a bit overkill. Unless you only use it once a month or so, rinsing it without soap most of the time is just fine.
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Old 08-06-09, 09:24 AM   #11
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I use mine daily and give it a thorough dishwasher cleaning once a week. For the daily cleaning I slightly unscrew the filter so that any trapped grains can get out and simply rinse. I tighten it back up then fill the carafe half full with water. Add a little soap and run the plunger up and down to clean. Rinse, repeat, enjoy. I love my press.
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Old 08-06-09, 09:26 AM   #12
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I use mine daily and give it a thorough dishwasher cleaning once a week. For the daily cleaning I slightly unscrew the filter so that any trapped grains can get out and simply rinse. I tighten it back up then fill the carafe half full with water. Add a little soap and run the plunger up and down to clean. Rinse, repeat, enjoy. I love my press.
I'm liking this process. Seems much easier and would still get it clean.
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Old 08-06-09, 09:31 AM   #13
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I'm liking this process. Seems much easier and would still get it clean.
I learned not to clean mine with soap daily because its too easy to get soap stuck in the plunger and not realize it, especially if you're in a hurry. If you have time to ensure its thorough, then fine, but trust me, slightly soapy tasting coffee is NOT fun.

It is worth it though for the much better coffee it makes. I've been using FP on and off for 10 years and daily for the last 3 or 4.
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Old 08-06-09, 09:52 AM   #14
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I have a couple lexan presses for camping.

The only lovin' they see is a rinse with water and they're in great shape.
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Old 08-06-09, 10:20 AM   #15
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I find that an occasional soak/rinse of the metal parts (screen, plunger, etc.) in a diluted bleach solution removes old oils that can build up on the metal that daily cleaning don't get. Sometimes can get funky flavors from things the oil picks up. Besides it restores the metal to it's original shiny color!
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Old 08-06-09, 10:21 AM   #16
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The french do not bathe or shower, so I advise against washing your press in any way.
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Old 08-06-09, 11:48 AM   #17
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I use mine daily and give it a thorough dishwasher cleaning once a week. For the daily cleaning I slightly unscrew the filter so that any trapped grains can get out and simply rinse. I tighten it back up then fill the carafe half full with water. Add a little soap and run the plunger up and down to clean. Rinse, repeat, enjoy. I love my press.
^^^ yep yep yep ^^^

And if I may, a question: Has anyone ever heard anything regarding pressed (and unfiltered) coffee being somehow less than healthy? I think I heard something like that once. Anybody else? Any valid concerns here that anybody knows of?
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Old 08-06-09, 12:16 PM   #18
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i've also heard that its less healthy, something about higher cholesterol from the oils? don't remember.

I've been using it weekdays for several months now. I rinse it after every use, making sure to get rid of any grains of coffee. Sometimes just unscrewing the end cap is enough to get them free. maybe once a week or two I wash with soap and water.
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Old 08-06-09, 12:58 PM   #19
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i've also heard that its less healthy, something about higher cholesterol from the oils? don't remember.
I think that's only from kopi luwak.

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Old 08-06-09, 01:02 PM   #20
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At le casa auf Hobartlemagne, we give ours a daily rinse and a weekly run in the dishwasher (top rack)
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Old 08-06-09, 01:48 PM   #21
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I usually only rinse well and run water on plunger in all directions to make sure all coffee remains are gone.

I only take it apart and clean it better with a little soap and rinsing about once every few weeks or so.

My rule of thumb is if you can start to see brown residue on the filter/screen part after rinsing then its overdue for a take apart cleaning.
Same here.
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Old 08-06-09, 01:51 PM   #22
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i've also heard that its less healthy, something about higher cholesterol from the oils? don't remember.
Well, presse coffee (as well as espresso and any process that doesn't use a paper filter) has more of a substance called cafetol, which naturally occurs in coffee, but can raise cholesterol levels. Is it worth worrying about? I don't know- it's about quality of life, I think.

As to cleaning, I agree with Crackerjab- you don't much soap (1/8tsp, maybe), what with the plunger action and the fine mesh screen and a couple of rinses with hot water gets rid of it.
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Old 08-06-09, 02:00 PM   #23
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I have three identical presses so I can put them in the dishwasher after each use. I only fill up and run the dishwasher about every second or third day. I have been doing this for years and it has not hurt the presses one iota. I do the same thing with my espresso filterbaskets and handles.

PS: I used to use the Bodum Brazil press. But it uses a plastic screw lock to attach the plunger rod to the filter screen. After a few years, the plastic cross-threaded and would no longer secure the plunger rod. I would press down, and the rod would detach from the screen and zip down to the bottom, leaving the screen at the top. I now use the one liter press from Wal-Mart at $ 19.95 each. It uses a stainless steel screw lock which is much more durable. The problem with the plastic screw locks is a known issue for some of the Bodum presses.
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Old 08-06-09, 04:31 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by rsyb View Post
I find that an occasional soak/rinse of the metal parts (screen, plunger, etc.) in a diluted bleach solution removes old oils that can build up on the metal that daily cleaning don't get. Sometimes can get funky flavors from things the oil picks up. Besides it restores the metal to it's original shiny color!

What works even better is a dilute solution of Oxi-Clean or the generic equivalent thereof. I also use this to clean the inside of my thermal coffee carafe (Capresso MT500) once a week or to remove coffee oils and debris on my coffee roasting equipment.

The problem with using bleach is that it can attack stainless steel, if you have any stainless components in your press. Short contact times and thorough rinsing will greatly reduce or eliminate this possbility. We worry about it in the beer homebrewing community from the perspective of sanitizing our stainless steel brewpots. Sanitizing does require a longer contact time.
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Old 08-06-09, 06:04 PM   #25
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Do you take it apart to clean it every time?
Hell no! I'm lazy! Maybe every 2-3 weeks. I scrub down the inside of it rinse the rest under the jet-nozzle part of my sink every day. I find that putting a few inches of water in it then putting the plunger all the way down and swirling the water vigorously removes enough of the previous grinds.
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