How Often Should I Change My Grinder Burrs?

We contacted a bunch of grinder manufacturers and asked them how often the burrs on their grinders should be changed. We’ve put their recommendations into a chart for you below. Most espresso grinders should have the burrs changed at least once or twice per year. Most Retail grinders should have the burrs changed once every one or two years.

When burrs get dull the following can happen:

  • The espresso and filter coffee will under extract and not taste so good. Dull burrs tend to make espresso and filter coffee taste sour, bitter, astringent, and lack sweetness. Maybe the coffee used to taste good, and now it doesn’t. This is a pretty good sign that the burrs are dull.

  • The espresso grinder will dose inconsistently. Sometimes the grinder will dose too much coffee, and then all of a sudden it will dose too little coffee. This happens because dull burrs create a lot of fines. These fines cause ground coffee to clump, and stick in the grinder chute.

  • Your grinder may clog, and fail to start or cause a breaker to trip. Dull burrs can create so many fines that they clog the grinder.

  • Your espresso will extract inconsistently. The fines created by dull burrs can cause one shot to run slowly, and the next shot to run quickly.

  • You keep making the grind finer to get the extraction, and body you want out of the coffee. We recommend that when you get the burrs changed you write the date on a piece of tape or label maker and attach it to the grinder. This can help you remember when to change them the next time.