Loving Lately + Pinterest Wins: Zojirushi Water Boiler (and how to clean) – life+running

Loving Lately + Pinterest Wins: Zojirushi Water Boiler (and how to clean)

This is a twofer post about our favorite kitchen appliance: Zojirushi’s Micom Water Boiler. This post is my opinion for which I did/will not receive compensation (even if you click on links). 

Loving Lately: Zojirushi Micom Water Boiler

Zojirushi micom water boiler // lifeplusrunning.com

(Image via Kohl’s)

My introductin to Zojirushi came from a previous roommate who had not only a simliar water boiler, but also one of Zojirushi’s rice cookers. She seemed to run late frequently (like myself) and both those appliances helped her maintain her healthy diet and caffiene habits through the availability of warm food and hot water. Through using her boiler, I discovered that tea and coffee tasted better when the water is at just the right temperature. Too-hot water can make your beverages bitter.

Since Mark and I drink different forms of caffeine in the morning, it made sense to us to have a water boiler rather than a coffee maker, and I loved my roommate’s water boiler. However, the price tag on Zojirushi appliances is, admittedly, daunting. We got our water boiler as a gift for our wedding. I’m not sure if we would have made the plunge on this particular model had we not gotten it as a gift. That being said, this little water boiler has more than proved its worth in our home.

Favorite features

  • Keep warm at multiple temps. This is especially great for me (right now) since I’m at home and drink a few cups of tea a day.
  • Timer function. You can set the water temp and have it automatically ready for you in 6, 7, 8, 9, or 10 hours.
  • Safe unplugging. The boiler has an easy-release electric plug in the back so you can unplug completely and refill without getting the electronics wet.
  • Easy to use. Press a couple of buttons and you’ve got water at the perfect temp for coffee or tea.
  • Warmer off function. Save energy by turning the warmer off when you’re not using it. I hope to remember to do this in the mornings when I start my job.
  • Easy to transport. Typically, we use the boiler in our kitchen. But there are times we’ve used the boiler at others’ homes. This large boiler is nice to have to provide hot drinks for company.
  • Multiple uses. It’s not just for beverages. Hot water is nice to have for recipes or if you’re into instant oatmeal or noodles. 
  • Self-cleaning. We will talk about this more in a bit. Hard water means enivitable buildup.


  • It sings. I’m not joking. It sings “Beautiful Dreamer” when you turn on the timer; additionally, it plays “Bach’s Minuet in G Major” when the water is ready. Although it’s adorable, it is tricky if you pre-set the timer and it’s ready before your alarm goes off.
  • It tells you the water is ready before it hits your selected temperature. The aforementioned singing happens when the water is re-boiled, not when it hits your temperature. You have to wait some time for it to cool down.
  • It reboils when you change to a higher temperature. If you go from 175 to 195 it’ll reboil (212°) instead of going directly to 195°. This takes more time (and wastes energy).
  • Large size. Although the large size is nice for people (like us) who don’t want to fill the appliance daily, I realize it wastes more energy than the smaller versions. We would be okay with a smaller version as we’ve only gone through one container in a day maybe once or twice.

Pinterest Wins: How to clean a (Zojirushi) Water Boiler

Now that I’ve told you all about this thing, how the heck do you keep it clean? I found these cleaning instructions on Pinterest, which I followed. However, it turns out that I should have just RTFM (read the fucking manual) because through doing so I discovered the “descaling” mode.

Here are the instructions verbtim from Zojirushi’s FAQ section of their website:
  • [They] recommend you clean the inner container periodically with Zojirushi’s Inner Container Cleaner (CD-K03E) or citric acid every 1 to 3 months.
  1. Put 1 package of citric acid CD-K03E in a cup and add warm water to dissolve. Pour it into the inner container and fill with water to the maximum water level line. The cleaner may also be substituted with 1/2 cup of lemon juice from concentrate. If using freshly squeezed lemon juice, please be sure to strain first, so the pulp does not get caught in the pump and damage the boiler.
  2. Close the upper lid, insert the power plug and press and hold the REBOIL button for more than 3 seconds. This will activate the descaling mode.
  3. Once cleaning completes, unplug the power plug, detach the upper lid and dispose water where indicated “EMPTY FROM HERE.”
  4. To remove the smell of citric acid, fill the inner container with water. Boil and dispense about a cup of hot water, allow to cool, then dispose the remaining water.

Ta-da! I followed these directions and ended up with a clean water boiler. I also treated my traditional tea kettle to the same citric acid bath (ouch, that sounds painful) and it’s clean as a whistle now, too.


What’s your favorite kitchen appliance? Have you ever owned a water boiler?



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