5 Reasons Your AeroPress Might be Leaking (And How to Fix It)

Jake Bonneman
January 13, 2023

You're in the zone, carefully crafting the perfect cup of coffee. You're making your final descent into coffee bliss, pushing down the plunger on your AeroPress, imagining how incredible this cup is going to taste, when suddenly—tragedy.

Your AeroPress has sprung a small leak.

Drops of rich, velvety coffee go spilling all over the white Calacatta quartz countertops you had installed yesterday.

All over your favorite 100% alabaster mug from the Qing Dynasty.

All over the faux albino snow leopard skin rug you just came into possession of the other night (under mysterious circumstances).

You're in a state of coffee disaster.

You can taste the delicious, smooth, grit-free irony as your dream cup of coffee has turned into a nightmare. You can feel the anger bubbling up inside of you, much like the carbon dioxide escaping from the fresh coffee grinds that were just bathed in pristine, 195°F spring water.

What will you do? What will you become?

You could try making coffee with a different coffee maker. But we all know that's just not going to happen.

Then you remember that you can just buy a new AeroPress for under $40. So you shrug it off and enjoy the rest of your day.

No. That's crazy talk—you must fix the problem. I admire your grit.

If you've suddenly found that your AeroPress is leaking a small amount of coffee when you press down on the plunger, don't panic or give up on life entirely. There are a few potential reasons why this might be happening to you. And fortunately, most of them are extremely simple fixes.

Why is My AeroPress Leaking? 5 Possible Solutions:

  • One possible reason for AeroPress leakage is that the rubber seal on the plunger is damaged or worn out. This gasket is what keeps the coffee from leaking out as you press the plunger down. If it's been damaged or misshapen somehow—like if someone accidentally ran it through an extra long, extra super hot dishwasher cycle—you'll need to replace it.
  • Another potential cause of an AeroPress leak is that the filter basket isn't seated properly. This can happen if you didn't screw on the filter basket tightly enough—very common. To fix this, simply unscrew the filter basket, replace the paper filter if necessary, and then screw the basket back on tightly—making sure it’s not screwing in at an angle because of stray coffee grounds or other obstructions.
  • Third, the coffee grounds you're using might be too fine. When the grounds are too fine, they can block the water from passing through the filter quickly enough and cause a big mess. To fix this, all you have to do is use a coarser grind of coffee. If you find the coffee isn't as strong as you'd like after using a coarser grind, you can always just let the coffee steep a little longer. In an AeroPress, it won't take much extra time.
  • You just might be pushing the plunger down too quickly.  If you're pressing down too hard or too fast, the coffee can slip past the rubber seal and start to leak. Or the coffee might have nowhere to go, and start trying to look for the path of least resistance out of the main chamber—which happens to be everywhere but in your coffee mug. To prevent this horror, make sure you're pressing down slowly and evenly.
  • Finally, as with any coffee brewer, it's possible that there is simply something wrong with the AeroPress itself. If you've tried all of the above solutions and your AeroPress is still leaking, you just may need to replace it. AeroPress brewers have a manufacturer warranty that lasts for 1 year from the purchase date. Fortunately, they're so inexpensive that if yours is out of the warranty period, and you are one of the rare AeroPress owners who experiences a problem you can't fix easily, it's not the end of the world. Just get a new one.

Ah, the sweet sound of silence.

No more hissing and gurgling as you try unsuccessfully to guide that velvety smooth coffee into your mug.

All those sleepless minutes, worrying about what you were going to do about your next cup of coffee. The world can now go back to normal—what a relief!

Again, in most cases, a leaking AeroPress is an easy problem to fix. With just a minute or two of troubleshooting, you should be able to fix the problem and get back to enjoying your perfect cup of coffee.

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Jake Bonneman
January 13, 2023
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