I love coffee makers, and I always thought it was a pity I could not take them everywhere. And I really mean everywhere, including outdoors.
Since I didn’t want to resort to instant coffee with cold water, I had to find a solution for brewing a nice hot cup of coffee without an electric outlet.
The Makita coffee maker is one of the first cordless machines that popped up.
But is it any good?
I wondered the same, so I spent hours researching. In this Makita coffee maker review, I’ll share with you everything you need to know about this model.
Let’s dive in.
Makita Coffee Maker: a Quick Overview
Makita coffee maker is a cordless machine that you can operate on a rechargeable battery and brew coffee anywhere you like. It’s quite a handy option for construction sites since there are probably many Makita tools around.
Why is that useful?
Because you can operate this coffee maker with batteries from these tools.
Just pop the battery out of your drill and into the Makita coffee maker and brew yourself a cup.
However, if you don’t already have a Makita battery, you’ll have to buy it separately. That can add up quite a lot to the total price, which I’m not thrilled about.
Of course, you can’t expect the battery to last for too long. A single charge is enough to make 1 to 3 cups of coffee, depending on the battery strength.
Then you’ll have to put it on the charger. Luckily, Makita batteries charge in under an hour.
Now, what I like about this machine are the options. You can choose between coffee grounds and pods, depending on your preferences.
What’s also great is that you don’t need paper filters for ground coffee! The machine comes with a permanent filter, which is durable and easy to clean. You’re both saving money and the environment by switching from paper to a permanent one.
- Lightweight and compact, this coffee maker is easy to transport
- Works on a battery, so you don’t need an electric outlet to use it
- You can choose between coffee grounds and pods, depending on what you prefer
- Comes with a permanent filter, so you don’t have to repurchase paper ones
- Only makes 1-3 cups at a time, so it’s not suitable for larger groups
- The battery is sold separately, which increases the total cost of the machine
A Deep Dive Into Features of Makita Coffee Maker
Okay, so that was a quick preview of what the Makita cordless coffee maker does.
Now, let’s talk about each feature in detail so that you can get a better insight into how suitable this machine is for you.
How good is the design?
The first thing you notice about Makita DCM501Z is that it’s the same signature blue shade as other tools by the same brand. If you already own Makita tools, having everything in the same style is definitely eye-pleasing.
The exterior of this coffee maker is made of plastic. But before you start thinking – that’s not the most durable choice of material – I’ll stop you right there.
True, a plastic coffee maker might not last you as many decades as a metal one would.
However, the plastic on this model is by no means flimsy. And, like any Makita product, this machine is also built to last.
And don’t forget that this is a portable coffee maker. Plastic is the way to go if you want to keep it lightweight.
On its own, the Makita coffee maker weighs 3.2 pounds. However, you should also take into account the weight of the battery as well as water when the tank is filled. When you add that up, the coffee maker can weigh about 5 pounds. Still, not too bad for a portable machine.
Speaking of batteries, this model can be powered by either of these two lithium-ion versions:
- 12V max CXT
- 18V LXT
Of course, they have to be Makita batteries.
The idea behind this is that you’re already using Makita power tools, so you surely already have at least one of them.
However, if you don’t own Makita tools, that means you have to buy the brand’s battery just for this coffee maker, which adds up to the cost. Depending on the type, a battery can cost half the price of the coffee machine!
Now, one thing I really like about this coffee maker is that you get a nice stainless steel mug. It’s heavy-duty and perfect for construction sites and outdoors.
It’s a perfect size – it fits snugly underneath the spout, thus preventing getting splashed when coffee is being poured. The choice of material also makes it durable and great at heat retention, keeping your coffee hot for a long time.
IN A NUTSHELL
For a portable coffee maker, this machine checks the boxes: it’s lightweight, compact, and durable. Since it uses Makita batteries, it’s an efficient choice for anyone already owning power tools. But for others, the cost can really add up.
What’s the capacity?
This coffee maker has a compact design with portability in mind, so we don’t really expect it to make a large batch of coffee at once.
The water tank is tiny – just 8 ounces. Which does make sense, don’t get me wrong. If you were to fill enough water for 10 cups of coffee, that would make it quite heavy and not as portable.
But this still means that if you want to make more than one 5 oz cup, that means refilling in between.
Now, how many cups can you make at once?
Well, it depends on the battery.
With a 12v battery, you can only make a single cup of coffee at a time. So the larger the battery, the more coffee you can make – but the numbers aren’t skyrocketing.
The strongest battery you can find is the 18v 6.0Ah, and with it, you can only make 3 cups at once.
I didn’t expect the battery life to be that short, but that only shows how much more power a coffee maker uses compared to a drill, for instance.
After you’re done, you’ll have to recharge the battery before using your power tools again. And depending on the size, that can last up to an hour, which isn’t that impressive.
IN A NUTSHELL
Both the size and capacity of this model are rather small. But that’s to be expected from a portable coffee maker.
How well does it perform?
What I really like about this coffee maker is that you can choose between coffee grounds and single serve coffee pods.
The model comes with a nice permanent drip coffee filter, so you don’t have to keep track of your paper filter amount when you’re on the go. Not just that, but you’re also more environmentally friendly by eliminating paper filters.
Now, if you’re brewing pre-ground coffee, Makita recommends using 50 grams of coffee per liter. In other words, that’s about two tablespoons per cup, which is slightly weaker than the so-called golden ratio.
But of course, the exact amount depends on your personal preferences. If you want a stronger cup of java, simply add more grounds.
As for the coffee pods, you can’t use your favorite K-cups and other compatible options. Instead, you have to use 60mm coffee pods, which basically look like round tea pouches.
These pods are not that easy to come by, as only a few brands make them. But given that you can use pre-ground coffee as well, I’m not too bothered by the pods.
You should also keep in mind that this is not the fastest brewer out there. Exactly how long it takes to make coffee depends on the battery strength:
- 18v – about 4 minutes
- 12v – about 5.5 minutes
Most non-portable coffee makers can make a whole carafe by that time.
As far as quality goes, you get a pretty decent cup of regular coffee with this machine. It’s piping hot, yet not burnt – just the right temperature.
Of course, if you follow the Makita recommendation, your brew will be rather thin. But if you go with your own preferences, you can make a really nice drink.
IN A NUTSHELL
This model allows you to use your favorite ground coffee or a coffee pod. In both cases, you get a pretty great coffee for a portable coffee maker.
Is it easy to use?
I’m really amazed at how simple this coffee maker is to use. In fact, I’d go as far as to say that it’s probably easier than a machine you might have at home.
Basically, all you need to do is:
- Insert the battery into the designated slot
- Add either coffee grounds or pods into the brew basket
- Add water to the tank
- Press the power button
It can’t get any simpler than that.
I also like that this coffee maker has an automatic shutdown after brewing is done. Of course, a smaller battery would be empty by that time anyways. But if you’re using a larger battery and brewing a single coffee cup, this nifty feature preserves battery life for something else.
What’s also great is that the machine will shut down in case there’s not enough water in the reservoir. That way, it prevents overheating and malfunctioning.
IN A NUTSHELL
With a single operating button, this coffeemaker is as straightforward as it gets.
How simple is it to clean the machine?
Maintenance is also simple with this machine. Again, it makes sense. You’re probably going to use this coffee maker in a place without an electrical outlet. It only makes sense that water might also be scarce.
And given that battery lasts just enough to brew coffee, it would be really odd to use a second battery charge just for running a daily cleaning program.
What you should do every day is:
- Wipe the exterior with a damp cloth
- Wash the ground or pod basket with soapy water
Of course, limescale is bound to build up with any machine, and Makita is no exception.
Luckily, descaling is also a piece of cake.
You just need to add citric acid to the full water tank, then run a brewing cycle without coffee.
IN A NUTSHELL
This coffee maker is quick and easy to maintain. You need to rinse the parts on a daily basis and descale every few months.
Do you get your money’s worth?
The question you’re probably wondering the most: is this coffee maker worth the money?
Well, it depends.
This coffee maker has a price tag at par with most coffee makers of the same capacity. But if we take into consideration that it’s portable, then it’s really cost-effective.
However, keep in mind that you also need a Makita battery to make it work. If you already own Makita cordless tools, then you have one that you can use for the coffee maker as well.
But if you don’t, you’ll have to buy one separately. That, naturally, adds up to the total cost of this machine – quite a lot, actually.
The battery (depending on its power) can cost almost half the price of the coffee maker!
Well, at least you can save up on buying paper filters, given the machine has a permanent drip filter.
IN A NUTSHELL
The coffee maker works on Makita batteries only. In case you already own one, then the price tag of this coffee maker is rather affordable. But buying one separately increases the total price of the model.
Still unsure about this Makita coffee maker? In this section, I’ve gathered a short FAQ that should solve all your doubts.
Can you make tea with a Makita coffee maker?
Yes, you can. But you shouldn’t add tea bags or leaves to the machine brew basket. Instead, simply use the coffee maker as a hot water dispenser for your tea.
How long does the Makita coffee maker battery last?
The battery on the Makita coffee maker lasts enough to make between 1 and 3 cups, depending on its strength. So, for instance, a 12v/4.0Ah lasts just 7 minutes, while an 18v/6.0Ah lasts up to 15 minutes.
Where are Makita products manufactured?
Since 1985, Makita has been making products here in the US at a facility located in Georgia.
To Sum Things Up
This Makita coffee maker can be both a great and bad purchase, depending on what exactly you want from it.
You should buy this coffee maker if:
- You want a cordless coffee maker
- You prefer permanent to paper filters
- You already own Makita power tools
You should avoid this coffee maker if:
- You want a quick cup of coffee
- You want to brew a larger batch at once
- You don’t own any Makita power tool
Ultimately, it depends on your preferences. But if you are a coffee lover who wants to have a hot cup of coffee everywhere, the Makita battery-operated coffee maker is a good pick.
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