When the Presto first arrived from Amazon, I had high hopes for it. At last, I thought, coffee brewed at the proper temperature and at a reasonable price! Unfortunately, the first thing I noticed after unpacking the unit was the somewhat overwhelming smell of plastic or solvent coming from the water reservoir. No problem, I said to myself, I'll just run a few pots of water through it before I make coffee, and that should take care of it. But UGH! Even after running several pots of water through the machine, the first pot of coffee was horrible and had a strong taste of plastic solvent.
Let me be clear. I'm not talking about a mild or somewhat unpleasant plastic odor. I'm talking about FUMES, like they'd coated the inside of the water reservoir with plastic model cement. Yuck!
For some time after that, I devoted myself to trying to get rid of those fumes. I tried baking soda, vinegar, and lemon juice, alone and in combination, and I let the various treatments soak for hours. One reviewer on Amazon suggested stuffing the water reservoir with newspaper, so that the paper would absorb the odor, and I even tried that, several times. Each of the treatments seemed to help some, but the odor always returned.
As for the taste of plastic in the coffee, I suppose that decreased over time too, but the first few pots were so bad that I could never really enjoy the coffee from the Presto. Real or imaginary, I also worried about the health effects of plastic leaching into the coffee. Who needs that with their morning cuppa?
So after a few weeks of trying to deal with it, I moved the Presto out to the garage, where it remains today, and eventually ended up getting a Technivorm from Boyd Coffee.
From what I've read, not all the Presto coffeemakers suffered from the plastic fume problem, but if you get one that does, I recommend you just return it, because there's a good chance you'll never be able to get rid of the plastic smell and taste.