Friday, January 22, 2010

How Does a Coffee Maker Work?

We all wake up in the morning and depend on our old friend to start our day - the coffee maker. The only effort we have to put in when wanting to enjoy a mug of coffee is to add a scoop of coffee, add the required amount of water and turn the machine on. We stand back and wait for our coffee to be ready before we can enjoy it. Think about it, have you ever stood there and tried to understand how the water gets from the compartment to the top of the machine? Have you ever wondered what that gurgling sound was? Here is what goes on inside.

If you open the top of the coffee machine, you will find the bucket that holds the water when you pour it in before the cycle starts. If you look inside, you will find a hole in the bucket's bottom, and this will become clear to you very soon. You also see a tube, and the purpose of this tube is to carry the water to the area where it drips out. The drip area is the part you see from the top that contains all the tiny holes. This is where the water arrives from the tube and then simply drips through the tiny holes.

If you turn the bucket upside down, you will see another tube and this is called the hot-water tube. This tube (tube2) connects to the black tube (tube1) that you see when looking at it from the top. Remember the hole in the bottom of the bucket mentioned earlier? Well, this is where tube2 picks up the cold water - from that hole. Also visible inside are the power cord and the on and off switch of the machine.

Next is the heating element. This little part is what makes the water hot. The heating element is just a simple coiled wire. This is similar to filament in your standard light bulb or the element in your every morning toaster. The coil in the coffee maker is held firmly in plaster, and this makes it rugged. This element has two jobs.

* The heating element (or the coil) boils the water when it is put in the coffee maker.* The element makes sure the coffee stays warm once the cycle is complete.

The heating element inside the coffee machine is pressed firmly against the warming plate. A heat conducting grease ensures that heat is transferred competently to the warming plate. The conducting grease is messy and is extremely difficult to get off yours hands. This grease can be found in power supplies, amplifiers - basically anything that squanders heat.

There is a part that's not visible in a coffee maker and this is the one-way valve. This valve can either be in that hole that was mentioned earlier or it could be in the heating pipe, and this pipe is aluminum. If a coffee maker had no one-way valve, the hot water would just flow back into the bucket after trying to make its way up the tube.

Where to Find Coffee Makers

Many people drink coffee every day. They drink it with breakfast, lunch, and even dinner. The workplace introduces many people to coffee as they feel it keeps them awake, alert, and more productive. Coffee makers vary from single cup to multi cup but all generally do one thing. Make coffee. You might wonder where to find a coffee maker that is just right for you. There are many places either near you or on line where you can find a coffee maker.

If you ask most people where to find a coffee maker, they will tell you to go to a local retail store. This is usually a good idea because at a retail store they will usually have entire aisles dedicated to various coffee makers. This helps a great deal as you can compare all the options that the various machines have to offer. You will find coffee makers that make a single cup, eight cups, or even as many as twelve cups at a time. Some will make even more but you usually have to order those. Coffee makers are available in many different styles and colors so you should be able to find one that will match your other kitchen appliances.

If you want to make the best purchase possible, you might want to read some reviews. The Internet has thousands of places that are dedicated solely to coffee makers. Many of these have very thorough reviews by many different people. It can be very beneficial to read reviews on coffee makers before you buy them so you know what you are looking for when you go to the store. Nothing can give you a feel for a new coffee maker than knowing what other people's experiences are with that product.

The Internet is also a great place to purchase coffee makers. There are many websites and on line stores that specialize in coffee makers and can give you some amazing deals. A common place to find a run of the mill coffee maker is a site that sells overstocked goods at discounted prices. There are many of these sites so you can search around and find one you like. You can save up to 75% if you look around carefully. Auction sites can also be a good place to look. Not everything up for auction is used and you can find many deals there. Some websites are promoted by a particular brand and for one price, they will send you a coffee maker and enroll you in some type of coffee club. This usually is a new coffee every month at a reasonable price. If you want to experiment, that might be a good choice.

The most important factor in buying a coffee maker is you. What do you want your coffee maker to do? How many people will it be serving? How much am I willing to pay? These are the most important questions you should ask yourself before buying a coffee maker. If you take your time and choose based on your needs, you will find the one you are looking for.

History of Coffee Makers

Coffee has been used as a drink for well over 2000 years. The first methods of brewing coffee were pretty crude but they have advanced greatly over the centuries. People used to just chew the cherry that came off the coffee tree to get a stimulant effect. Inside the cherry was the coffee bean. Over time with experimentation, people started to roast and then grind the beans for better flavor.

As early as the the late 1700s, coffee makers began showing up. This made it easy for people to brew coffee and not worry about getting grounds in their cup. This was expensive and not many people had them. The basic design is similar to coffee pots of today. There was a pot on the bottom with a place to put your ground coffee on the top. This was connected to a chamber on top where you poured in your boiling water.

People tried many different types of coffee maker throughout the years since then. There have been percolators, vacuum coffee makers, and drip coffee makers. Percolators use a pot over a heat source that forces the water into an upper chamber where the coffee grounds are. The water drips through the coffee and back into the lower pot. You know it is ready when it stops making percolating noises which are easy to hear. Then you remove it from heat before it boils. Vacuum coffee makers use what looks like two pots, one upside down on the other. As it is heated, the pressure forces hot water up into the top chamber where it infuses with the ground coffee. When you remove it from heat, the pressure is reversed and the coffee goes back to the lower pot ready to drink. Drip coffee makers are the kind we are all used to. Whether automatic or manual they work by dumping hot water over coffee grounds that sit in a filter. It strains through into a pot and is ready to drink.

With the advent of electricity, coffee makers became very popular and a little cheaper. In the early 1900s coffee makers really started to boom and by the 1970s almost everyone had a coffee maker in their home. These were usually of the automatic drip variety as they were the easiest to use. Todays coffee makers have many features. They have timers that allow you to specify when you want your coffee maker to turn on, have built in grinders, storage areas, and much more. You can buy home espresso and cappuccino machines also. Coffee makers today range from the single cup variety to commercial units that make gallons at a time so no matter what your need, you can usually find it.

As more and more people start to enjoy different kinds of coffee, coffee makers become easier to use and offer more features. Many combine espresso, cappuccino, and coffee all in one machine but it is rather bulky still. Look for these to shrink in the near future.