Want the best out of your fresh beans and to stay out of the repair shop? Keep it clean.
This short article will focus on keeping your espresso machine clean of coffee residue. This is different than Descaling.
One of our favorite cleaners is from Puly. It has a great foaming action and really does a nice job.
The directions on how to use this product are on the bottle as well as in the User Manual of your espresso machine. If your espresso machine is capable of “backflushing”, then please refer to your User Manual on how to do this properly, or search YouTube for a video there a lot out there. Backflushing with no cleaner is acceptable anytime.
Which type of machine do you have?
This cleaner can be used for soaking the portafilter basket/head in to make sure your basket is always clean. These machines would not use this product internally, but a little solution on a wet rag will clean the outside without messing up any patina.
These types of machines may or may not be able to perform a “backflush procedure”. You would need to make sure that your espresso machine has a 3-way dispensing valve giving it the ability to be backflushed. All e61 group head espresso machines need to be cleaned on a regular basis depending on usage.
Yes and yes again. These machines require cleaning all the time depending on usage. From the drip tray to the removable brew group. If you use your espresso machine every day, then a decent brew group cleaning once a month should be ok. Some machines have an actual cleaning program cycle that it can go through. Less sophisticated fully-automatics can be spot cleaned by setting your machine to accept pre-ground coffee and then instead of coffee grounds, just put cleaner powder. If you have never done this before, prepare to be shocked.
How does the cleaning procedure work?
For espresso machines that use a portafilter, you remove the perforated portafilter basket and put in one that has no holes, or a “blank”. It is now a little dish that will hold a small amount of cleaner. After you put it back on the machine, activate the brew cycle for a few seconds then shut it off. The detergent water will then flush out of the 3-way valve into the drip tray. Repeat until the water runs clear.
You can either run the machine program or use coffee cleaner like pre-ground coffee.