Coffee Pots for Dummies

About a year and a half ago, our old cheap basic Mr. Coffee coffee maker fizzled out and died with no warning.  Being my typical thrifty self, and also in a hurry to replace the source of my caffeine intake, I headed out to the closest bargain outlet to find a new coffeemaker.  Ollies is nearby, and usually has a good supply of reasonably priced quality housewares.  Since it sells close-out items, you’re never quite sure what will be in stock, but I am pretty flexible.  If it works, and is cheap, I’ll be happy.

Apparently, Ollies does not get a good supply of coffee makers.  At just about any given time they have lovely Farberware pots and pans, chef grade ceramic casserole dishes, and soft 200 thread count sheets.  But the supply of  coffee makers is usually very limited.  I got the only brand they had, some Cafe Belmondo close-out that had been part of some coffee promotion at one time.  For $20, how bad could it be?  And I didn’t feel like going to the other side of town to deal with the Wal-Mart crowds.

At first, the coffee pot seemed decent, although Big Daddy rolled his eyes at the no-name brand.  “Look, it has a timer.  We can set it before we go to bed and have coffee waiting for us,”  I pathetically argued to get his endorsement.  This was not the best argument since Mr. Wizard already has much of our household running on timers, and the old coffee pot was one of those items.

Before long, the digital read-out on the clock disintegrated, making it impossible to set the timer.  The replaceable mesh filter still allowed coffee grounds to get into the finished product so we had to buy the weird cone-shaped paper filters.  I used to be able to place the Mr. Coffee pot in the dishwasher, but since the lid didn’t come off this new gadget, I had to wash it by hand.  The spout dribbled coffee onto the counter every time we poured.  But the most annoying thing of all was…the damn thing turned off after two hours.  Whether you’re done with your coffee drinking or not, the stupid machine stops warming your pot of brew.

More than any other flaw and feature, the two-hour shut-off is the one thing that annoyed us most.  We like to enjoy our coffee throughout the day, not gulp it down in an hour or two.  I have a thermos carafe, but that’s just one more pain-in-the butt thing to wash.  And Big Daddy actually likes the taste of coffee that has been cooking all day on the warmer.  I should have asked for a new coffee maker for Christmas.  In fact, I saw one for about $10 at Wal-Mart while I was Christmas shopping.  I could kick myself for not buying it.

Saturday I got a 10% off coupon from Ollies.  Today I used the last of my cone-shaped coffee filters.  This perfect storm convinced me to try my luck again at buying a coffee maker.  There was another no-name brand, and it had the stupid two-hour shut-off.  Then I spied a Black and Decker model.  It was factory serviced, but who cares?  The filter basket was round, and it was a brand name.  There was no mention of it shutting down after two hours.

I brought it home and set it up.  I ran water through it to clean out the dust before I use it.  And then I read the booklet that proudly mentioned that it automatically shuts off after two hours!!!

Is this a law now?  Do they think we’re all too stupid to turn off the coffee pot when we’re done?  I realize most of us Americans are too stupid to understand the health care issues without them being properly explained by our elected elite, and soon they’ll have to limit our access to junk food and such because we’re too dumb to realize it’s not good for us, but really!  Taking away our steamy midday cup of java?  This is really a low blow.

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13 Responses to “Coffee Pots for Dummies”


  1. 1 Chris February 23, 2010 at 1:20 am

    Give me a little time alone with it. I’m sure I can disable the auto-shutoff.

  2. 2 Cyndi February 23, 2010 at 7:48 am

    Yes! Mine annoyingly shuts off after 2 hours. I can only guess they’re afraid they’ll get sued if some idiot leaves it on, goes on vacation for two weeks, and comes home to…..a really hot and likely charred coffee pot? Can they self-combust or cause other serious damage if left on that long? I doubt it. But it is a huge pain in the ass. I like to drink coffee throughout the day too and every day when the beautiful green light is not on I curse this stupid feature!

    • 3 les February 23, 2010 at 8:01 am

      I know. Why can’t we have a choice? In aisle one: coffee makers for litigious forgetful idiots. In aisle two: coffee makers for responsible people that have been making coffee for 20 years without this stupid feature and are still alive to tell the tale.

  3. 4 Consuella Banana Hammock February 23, 2010 at 9:27 am

    les, i hope you have learned a valuable lesson. you NEVER NEVER NEVER let a price tag influence your choice of coffee makers. it is coffee dammit! it has to be good. you have to dish out some dough. don’t mess with the java. EVER.

  4. 6 Dawn February 23, 2010 at 7:15 pm

    As Ricky Ricardo would say, “That’s ridiculous!”

    I make mine one cup at a time. I’ve replaced a hundred coffee makers and I just can’t go back to the machine anymore.

    I need a donut.

  5. 7 robinaltman February 23, 2010 at 8:03 pm

    That seems really really dumb. I guess they are made like that for stupid litigious coffee drinkers. But the smart mid day coffee drinkers are screwed. I’d go with Chris on this one.

    I’ve switched to the stupid Braun Tassimo single cup things, because of my husband. I was really resistant to the idea, but it’s won me over. It takes 2 minutes for a great cup of fresh coffee. And, get this – no cleaning the pot. You can use those 20% off coupons for Bed Bath and Beyond when you buy the little coffee thingies, or get them in bulk for cheaper.

    • 8 les February 23, 2010 at 11:37 pm

      One cup at a time, ladies? But…but…who gets the first cup? Hubby and I would each need our own machine…or we’d be duking it out!

    • 9 john pratt August 25, 2015 at 2:16 pm

      Those single cup makers only make 6 oz of coffee, what do you do when you use a 20 oz cup to drink your coffee from, make it 3 times for one cup?

  6. 10 Whitney Browner June 18, 2010 at 5:46 pm

    VERY VERY VERY nice indeed!

  7. 11 Lou Coldcoffee Robertson December 4, 2012 at 11:00 pm

    Disable the 2 hour timer? As Tim the toolman Taylor would say… eeeeehhh? If you know how PLEASE PLEASE share. The hub goes to work at 5…… I get up at 8… I might have to go drag the old old …old coffeemaker out of the shed.

    • 12 les@mamaneeds2rant December 5, 2012 at 8:56 am

      If you get up at 7, Lou, you’d have a chance. You can’t disable the thing. BUT what we do is hit the off button, then hit the on button again for another 2 hours. We do this several times during the day to keep the warmer on. At first I was afraid this would ruin the coffeemaker, but I got to the point where I didn’t care so I tried it. And it works–but only for 2 hour intervals at a time!

  8. 13 houstonbch December 16, 2012 at 11:22 pm

    This is sadly too funny to me. I have the same complaint and finally decided to google it. This was the first result. I thought I was alone in my quest for a coffee maker for adults. Nothing I own turns of when it decides except for the coffee maker. I do the same as you and turn it off and back on every couple hours. It’s a Black & Decker too, but for an inexpensive machine it makes a nice cup of coffee. But I decided to check about a way to disable auto off before convincing myself to ask Santa for a new, adult coffee maker that will respect the fact I am more intelligent and do not need supervision.


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