Skip to Content

Keurig not pumping water? This weird trick worked

Share and spread the joy of coffee

There’s no doubt about it: I absolutely love my Keurig coffee makers. It’s been a kitchen essential in our home for a decade now. The one thing that has troubled me is the fact that sometimes my Keurig stops pumping water. Luckily I found a way to fix this issue, and I’m going to share it with you. This post will show how to fix a not pumping water Keurig, and it’s really simple to do.


Help! My Keurig is Making a Grinding Noise

No doubt you’re familiar with the sounds of your Keurig by now, and you know how to use a Keurig.

You hit the button, the water gets pumped from the water reservoir into the machine to be heated, and it brews out a perfect cup of coffee. You can usually tell by the sound your Keurig makes if it is working properly or not.

Once you start hearing grinding noises, you know that trouble is not far behind. Sometimes you need to descale your Keurig and other times you need to clean the Keurig needle (see the paper clip trick), but if the Keurig water stops pumping, that’s a different issue. Also sometimes you need to know how to reset a descale Keurig warning if the light is not turning off.

Before I give you the answer, let me be clear, this worked for me and may not work for you. It is possible that this repair is doing damage that I don’t know about. I’m not a repair person or a Keurig repair tech. I’m just a guy trying to figure out how to fix his Keurig when it stops pumping out water.


The problem: Why Your Keurig Isn’t Pumping water

To give you an idea of what was happening with my Keurig Classic, I would hit the brew button, and it would spurt out half an ounce of water.

Then my Keurig brewer would make a grinding noise that seemed like it was pumping water, but looking at the reservoir, it was clear the water line was not moving down.

This means that there is no new water being pumped into the Keurig, despite the reservoir being full. The most common culprit is air bubbles in the waterline. To fix this, I tried a bunch of different things, but these are the two that usually worked.


Solution 1: Keurig not dispensing water

The first thing I did was unplug my Keurig and let the water cool off (at least an hour).

Then I removed the Keurig water reservoir, old coffee pod, drip tray and turned the coffee maker upside down in the sink.

This would move the water around and possibly change things on the inside.

Next, I gave it a little shake over the sink. The water inside the machine comes out and into the sink (which is why we wait for the device to cool down first; otherwise, we would scald our hands).

Then I put it back together, plugged it in, refilled the Keurig water reservoir, and tried a brew cycle without a k-cup in it (aka water-only brew cycle).

If the water comes out and the level in the water tank goes down, you have fixed it. You can get back to your water dispensing hot coffee ways.

Sometimes this would fix the pumps’ ability to pump water but not every time.


Solution 2: Keurig not pumping water

If you tried the first solution and your Keurig is still not pumping water, this may work.

This has been my go-to for the last while when my Keurig won’t brew coffee. My hunch is that the water pump has air bubbles in the water lines, and it’s not able to prime the pump. This means we need to force some water through it. Here are the steps:

  • First, make sure you have a third of the water tank full. Be sure to remove the water filter.Keurig not pumping water repair step
  • Next, grab a turkey baster and get some water into it from the water in the water tank.Keurig not pumping water repair solution
  • Next, with the turkey baster partially full of water, put it against the water intake valve inside the Keurig water reservoir of the machine.Keurig not pumping water repair tip
  • Give the baster a squeeze. This shoots water into the machine and hopefully dislodges anything that is causing it not to block and moves the air bubbles through it.
  • You may need to do this a few times.

Once this happens, the air bubbles in the machine should have been moved around, and you likely will get your Keurig returning to its coffee-making ways.

When you are done, plug your Keurig machine back in and hit the power button. Empty out the reservoir and fill it with fresh water.

The grinding of the pump should stop, and the machine will be taking water again.

Your Keurig coffee maker should be able to pump water again, put the drip tray back in its place, empty the water tank and fill it with some fresh water and run it through a water-only brewing cycle.

That’s it! Now you know how to fix a Keurig that is not pumping water. 

You should be back to enjoying your favorite coffee and brewing coffee like a normal Keurig owner again.


Final thoughts on fixing a Keurig that is not pumping water

As a coffee lover, I know that when your Keurig stops pumping water, it’s a terrible way to start a morning. If you hear the same grinding noise, it’s likely your Keurigs water pump has an issue. Hopefully, these two methods will work for your Keurig brewers, and you will be back to enjoying a hot cup of coffee quickly.

If these methods don’t work, it may be a bigger issue, or you may need to replace your Keurig. If that’s the case, check out our best Keurig brewers to help you with your next purchase. We’ve reviewed every Keurig on the market, and there are some pretty cool new features that Keurig has brought out in the last year or two.


Keurig Troubleshooting
This post may contain affiliate links which go towards keeping this site running. Please see our Disclaimer and Privacy Policy for more. We are a member in the Amazon Affiliate Program. Thank you for your support!