General Cooking (rec.food.cooking) For general food and cooking discussion. Foods of all kinds, food procurement, cooking methods and techniques, eating, etc.

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
  #1 (permalink)   Report Post  
Old 08-07-2006, 07:20 PM posted to alt.home.repair,rec.food.cooking
external usenet poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 4,555
Default descaling a Gaggia expresso machine

I just dug the ol' expresso machine out of the back of the cabinet after
a couple of years since it's been used; dusted it off, filled it with
water and tried to use it. The heater works, the pump works, but no
water comes out. t's plugged up with scale somewhere.

I put a pint of water and a 1/2 tsp of citric acid in it and let it sit
for a while and tried it again. No joy. I took the screen off and it
was clear. I notices a stainless steel bolt (looks like a big
carburator jet) in the middle under the screen. I unscrwed it with a
13mm wrench and it is obviously plugged up. I turned on the pump with
this jet removed and it works.

I have the jet (online parts store calls it a boiler valve) soaking in
some vinegar, but I don't know if that'll do it. The valve looks like
it would come apart with two 13mm wrenches.

Is this something that will clean out OK if I just give it time in the
vinegar (or citric acid)? Will I ruin it if I take it apart? Will I
ruin it if I use something stronger, like hydrochloric acid (diluted
50%)? I also have phosphoric acid, which is safer for stainless steel,
but I dunno if it will remove calcium scale.

Worst case is I have to buy a new valve for $20 plus shipping.
Wha'd'ya think?

Thanks,
Bob

  #2 (permalink)   Report Post  
Old 08-07-2006, 07:48 PM posted to alt.home.repair,rec.food.cooking
external usenet poster
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 2
Default descaling a Gaggia expresso machine

zxcvbob wrote:

I just dug the ol' expresso machine out of the back of the cabinet after
a couple of years since it's been used; dusted it off, filled it with
water and tried to use it. The heater works, the pump works, but no
water comes out. t's plugged up with scale somewhere.

I put a pint of water and a 1/2 tsp of citric acid in it and let it sit
for a while and tried it again. No joy. I took the screen off and it
was clear. I notices a stainless steel bolt (looks like a big
carburator jet) in the middle under the screen. I unscrwed it with a
13mm wrench and it is obviously plugged up. I turned on the pump with
this jet removed and it works.

I have the jet (online parts store calls it a boiler valve) soaking in
some vinegar, but I don't know if that'll do it. The valve looks like
it would come apart with two 13mm wrenches.

Is this something that will clean out OK if I just give it time in the
vinegar (or citric acid)? Will I ruin it if I take it apart? Will I
ruin it if I use something stronger, like hydrochloric acid (diluted
50%)? I also have phosphoric acid, which is safer for stainless steel,
but I dunno if it will remove calcium scale.

Worst case is I have to buy a new valve for $20 plus shipping.
Wha'd'ya think?

Thanks,
Bob


I think that's the check valve aka 3-way valve, and you will most likely
have to carefully take it apart. There's a ball and spring arrangement
inside so be careful and take note how its arranged. Clean the orifice
and then reassemble. Unless you take it apart, the cleaning solution
will take a really long time to get that orifice clean since its blocked
on one side by the ball and spring.
HTH - Love my Gaggia

--
Grandpa

What is that dripping from my fingers?
Why it looks like time.
  #3 (permalink)   Report Post  
Old 08-07-2006, 08:19 PM posted to alt.home.repair,rec.food.cooking
external usenet poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 10,962
Default descaling a Gaggia expresso machine

zxcvbob wrote in news:4habbeF1qegvoU1
@individual.net:

Worst case is I have to buy a new valve for $20 plus shipping.
Wha'd'ya think?



Bob,

You could accelerate the vinegar action by putting it in a plastic bottle
or jar and shaking it for a while. Maybe add some oil to the vinegar for
some lube factor?

$0.02,

Andy
  #4 (permalink)   Report Post  
Old 08-07-2006, 08:20 PM posted to alt.home.repair,rec.food.cooking
external usenet poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 4,620
Default descaling a Gaggia expresso machine

Oh pshaw, on Sat 08 Jul 2006 11:20:19a, zxcvbob meant to say...

I just dug the ol' expresso machine out of the back of the cabinet after
a couple of years since it's been used; dusted it off, filled it with
water and tried to use it. The heater works, the pump works, but no
water comes out. t's plugged up with scale somewhere.

I put a pint of water and a 1/2 tsp of citric acid in it and let it sit
for a while and tried it again. No joy. I took the screen off and it
was clear. I notices a stainless steel bolt (looks like a big
carburator jet) in the middle under the screen. I unscrwed it with a
13mm wrench and it is obviously plugged up. I turned on the pump with
this jet removed and it works.

I have the jet (online parts store calls it a boiler valve) soaking in
some vinegar, but I don't know if that'll do it. The valve looks like
it would come apart with two 13mm wrenches.

Is this something that will clean out OK if I just give it time in the
vinegar (or citric acid)? Will I ruin it if I take it apart? Will I
ruin it if I use something stronger, like hydrochloric acid (diluted
50%)? I also have phosphoric acid, which is safer for stainless steel,
but I dunno if it will remove calcium scale.

Worst case is I have to buy a new valve for $20 plus shipping.
Wha'd'ya think?


You could try CLR and/or coffeepot cleaner. Neither will hurt the machine.
You will still probably have to probe the tiny whole with a needle.


--
Wayne Boatwright
__________________________________________________

I never met a repo man who didn't do speed.

  #5 (permalink)   Report Post  
Old 08-07-2006, 08:25 PM posted to alt.home.repair,rec.food.cooking
external usenet poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 1,583
Default descaling a Gaggia expresso machine

In article ,
zxcvbob wrote

Is this something that will clean out OK if I just give it time in the
vinegar (or citric acid)? Will I ruin it if I take it apart? Will I
ruin it if I use something stronger, like hydrochloric acid (diluted
50%)? I also have phosphoric acid, which is safer for stainless steel,
but I dunno if it will remove calcium scale.

Worst case is I have to buy a new valve for $20 plus shipping.
Wha'd'ya think?

Thanks,
Bob



Try some Lime-Away. And have $28 in your hip pocket just in case.
--
-Barb
http://jamlady.eboard.com Updated 7-5-06, Pannekoeken
"If it's not worth doing to excess, it's not worth doing at all."


  #6 (permalink)   Report Post  
Old 08-07-2006, 08:26 PM posted to alt.home.repair,rec.food.cooking
external usenet poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 4,555
Default descaling a Gaggia expresso machine

Grandpa wrote:
zxcvbob wrote:

I just dug the ol' expresso machine out of the back of the cabinet
after a couple of years since it's been used; dusted it off, filled it
with water and tried to use it. The heater works, the pump works, but
no water comes out. t's plugged up with scale somewhere.

I put a pint of water and a 1/2 tsp of citric acid in it and let it
sit for a while and tried it again. No joy. I took the screen off
and it was clear. I notices a stainless steel bolt (looks like a big
carburator jet) in the middle under the screen. I unscrwed it with a
13mm wrench and it is obviously plugged up. I turned on the pump with
this jet removed and it works.

I have the jet (online parts store calls it a boiler valve) soaking in
some vinegar, but I don't know if that'll do it. The valve looks like
it would come apart with two 13mm wrenches.

Is this something that will clean out OK if I just give it time in the
vinegar (or citric acid)? Will I ruin it if I take it apart? Will I
ruin it if I use something stronger, like hydrochloric acid (diluted
50%)? I also have phosphoric acid, which is safer for stainless
steel, but I dunno if it will remove calcium scale.

Worst case is I have to buy a new valve for $20 plus shipping.
Wha'd'ya think?

Thanks,
Bob


I think that's the check valve aka 3-way valve, and you will most likely
have to carefully take it apart. There's a ball and spring arrangement
inside so be careful and take note how its arranged. Clean the orifice
and then reassemble. Unless you take it apart, the cleaning solution
will take a really long time to get that orifice clean since its blocked
on one side by the ball and spring.
HTH - Love my Gaggia



Thanks. I did take it apart; I felt the spring in there as I was
loosening it, so I was careful not to let it fly apart. I had used a
needle to poke the hole that was completely blocked before I took it
apart when I was trying to just soak it clean.

I soaked the taken-apart valve in vinegar for a while, then used a Q-tip
with some phosphoric acid to clean the inside where the check ball
seats. Rinsed it, put it back together, and ran some fresh water thru
the machine.

It's working just fine now. :-) It's kind of odd that the holes don't
line up between the 2 halves of the valve and the water has to travel a
little ways through the screw threads. The water doesn't seem to mind.

Best regards,
Bob
  #7 (permalink)   Report Post  
Old 08-07-2006, 08:46 PM posted to alt.home.repair,rec.food.cooking
external usenet poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 54
Default descaling a Gaggia expresso machine


"snip
: Is this something that will clean out OK if I just give it time in the
: vinegar (or citric acid)? Will I ruin it if I take it apart? Will I
: ruin it if I use something stronger, like hydrochloric acid (diluted
: 50%)? I also have phosphoric acid, which is safer for stainless steel,
: but I dunno if it will remove calcium scale.
:
: Worst case is I have to buy a new valve for $20 plus shipping.
: Wha'd'ya think?
:
: Thanks,
: Bob

Each of the different Espresso Brand makers sells "Descaling Liquid". They all
stress NOT to use acids.

This is for, of course, after you have got it clean from the blockage as it has to
circulate.

You should be able to go on line to Gaggia to find a manual for your machine and
it will describe the routine descaling operation.

The modern electronic ones signal that you have to do a descale after 'x' number
of cups.

If you use only deionised water to fill the machine you will not need to descale
in the future.

Frenchy


  #8 (permalink)   Report Post  
Old 08-07-2006, 09:04 PM posted to alt.home.repair,rec.food.cooking
external usenet poster
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 2
Default descaling a Gaggia expresso machine

zxcvbob wrote:
Grandpa wrote:

[...]
I think that's the check valve aka 3-way valve, and you will most likely
have to carefully take it apart. There's a ball and spring arrangement
inside so be careful and take note how its arranged. Clean the orifice
and then reassemble. Unless you take it apart, the cleaning solution
will take a really long time to get that orifice clean since its blocked
on one side by the ball and spring.
HTH - Love my Gaggia



Thanks. I did take it apart; I felt the spring in there as I was
loosening it, so I was careful not to let it fly apart. I had used a
needle to poke the hole that was completely blocked before I took it
apart when I was trying to just soak it clean.

I soaked the taken-apart valve in vinegar for a while, then used a Q-tip
with some phosphoric acid to clean the inside where the check ball
seats. Rinsed it, put it back together, and ran some fresh water thru
the machine.

It's working just fine now. :-) It's kind of odd that the holes don't
line up between the 2 halves of the valve and the water has to travel a
little ways through the screw threads. The water doesn't seem to mind.

Best regards,
Bob


Glad I could help. Don't ask me how I knew about the ball and spring!
Enjoy the espresso!

--
Grandpa

What is that dripping from my fingers?
Why it looks like time.
  #9 (permalink)   Report Post  
Old 08-07-2006, 09:39 PM posted to alt.home.repair,rec.food.cooking
external usenet poster
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 265
Default descaling a Gaggia expresso machine

My favorite cleaner for this type of things is a mixture of baking soda
and vinegar. The combination of the two, fizzes and bubbles things
fairly clean. It's totally harmless.

The combination also is good to pour down your drain once a week. And
if you put it in a coffee canister, and swish it around a bit, rinsing
afterwards with clear water, your cannister will appear brand new. .
..no cloudy glass!

Myrl Jeffcoat
http://www.myrljeffcoat.com

  #10 (permalink)   Report Post  
Old 09-07-2006, 01:46 AM posted to alt.home.repair,rec.food.cooking
external usenet poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 5
Default descaling a Gaggia expresso machine

zxcvbob wrote:

I just dug the ol' expresso machine out of the back of the cabinet after
a couple of years since it's been used; dusted it off, filled it with
water and tried to use it. The heater works, the pump works, but no
water comes out. t's plugged up with scale somewhere.

I put a pint of water and a 1/2 tsp of citric acid in it and let it sit
for a while and tried it again. No joy. I took the screen off and it
was clear. I notices a stainless steel bolt (looks like a big
carburator jet) in the middle under the screen. I unscrwed it with a
13mm wrench and it is obviously plugged up. I turned on the pump with
this jet removed and it works.

I have the jet (online parts store calls it a boiler valve) soaking in
some vinegar, but I don't know if that'll do it. The valve looks like
it would come apart with two 13mm wrenches.

Is this something that will clean out OK if I just give it time in the
vinegar (or citric acid)? Will I ruin it if I take it apart? Will I
ruin it if I use something stronger, like hydrochloric acid (diluted
50%)? I also have phosphoric acid, which is safer for stainless steel,
but I dunno if it will remove calcium scale.

Worst case is I have to buy a new valve for $20 plus shipping.
Wha'd'ya think?


I think that if you post in alt.coffee you'll get some responses from people
who fix Gaggias for a living.

--
--John
to email, dial "usenet" and validate
(was jclarke at eye bee em dot net)


Reply
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules

Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
descaling coffee machine caroline[_2_] Coffee 5 17-08-2011 12:26 PM
Gaggia Cubika Coffee Machine Charles Turner[_2_] Coffee 25 27-11-2007 08:39 AM
what pump expresso machine do I buy D. Ross Coffee 0 09-12-2004 07:43 AM
gaggia expresso machines Smokeyone Coffee 5 02-11-2004 05:18 PM
Cleaning Expresso Machine-Help me! BabyJane Hudson General Cooking 6 26-10-2003 05:07 AM


All times are GMT +1. The time now is 05:55 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Copyright ©2000 - 2022, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright 2004-2022 FoodBanter.com.
The comments are property of their posters.
 

About Us

"It's about Food and drink"

 

Copyright © 2017