As an espresso machine enthusiast, you know the importance of keeping your coffee maker in top condition. A good quality espresso machine is a significant investment and you’ll want to make sure that it lasts for as long as possible. Inevitably, with regular use it can be easy for your machine to start showing signs of wear and tear. That's why it's essential to take these steps to extend its lifespan.
So let's dive into some tips for prolonging the life of your espresso machine and ensuring that it continues to provide you with delicious coffee for years to come.
This is step number one for obvious reasons. Keeping your espresso machine clean is essential for its longevity. After each use, take a few minutes to wipe down the surface and remove any residual coffee oil that can attract mold and bacteria. Make sure to wipe down the shower screen to remove any grounds that may have been left over from extraction. A dirty machine is not only unsanitary, but it can also affect the quality of your coffee. By taking the time to clean your machine, you'll keep it looking and functioning like new.
Create A Backflush Routine
While it’s not necessary to backflush daily with home espresso machines, using a cleaning detergent like Urnex’s Coffee Equipment Cleaning Powder every 1-2 weeks is essential to keeping your grouphead in proper working order. Insert a backflush disc into your portafilter and then add a small amount of cleaning detergent to your portafilter before rinsing your grouphead thoroughly. This will not only add years to the life of your machine by keeping the grouphead clean of any coffee residue, but also keeps your extractions consistent for the best tasting shots.
Change Your Gasket & Shower Screen Annually
When you first receive your home espresso machine, you’ll likely notice the portafilter does not lock completely perpendicular to the machine. If you imagine the grouphead like the face of a clock, the portafilter will likely lock in at the 7 o’clock position at first, which is completely normal. Over time you’ll notice it begins locking in at 6 o’clock, and then at 5 o’clock, which is a sign you’ll need to replace the grouphead gasket to keep leaks from forming.
When you replace the gasket it's a good idea to replace the shower screen at the same time as some of the holes may have been clogged after a year’s worth of usage. You’ll want to replace both parts every year or so to keep your extractions consistent.
Using high-quality coffee beans and maintaining a clean grinder are important factors in the quality of your espresso. By using low-quality or particularly oily coffee beans, your grinder can become clogged with residue and cause the grinder to jam or break down entirely. Cleaning your grinder’s burrs and chute with a brush every month or so will prevent long-term jamming issues.
Storing your espresso machine in a cool, dry place is key to prevent rust and other forms of corrosion. Avoid storing it in humid or damp areas, as this can speed up the wear and tear process. Keeping your machine in a safe and protected place will help ensure that it lasts for many years.
Always follow the manufacturer's instructions for using your machine. Make sure you have it plugged into the proper receptacle and that receptacle is wired properly. Overloading the machine or using it for extended periods can cause damage to the internal components, reducing its lifespan. By using the machine properly you'll ensure that it continues to function properly and provide you with a perfect cup of espresso every time.
Schedule Routine Checkups
Just like your car needs a tune-up every now and then, so does your espresso machine. Schedule routine checkups with a professional to keep it in top condition. During these checkups the professional will inspect the machine, perform any necessary maintenance and replace any parts that may be worn out or damaged. This will ensure that your machine is running smoothly and providing you with the best possible coffee experience.
By following these simple tips, you'll ensure that your espresso machine lasts as long as possible and continues to provide you with delicious coffee for many years to come.