Descaling and cleaning different types of espresso machines

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Regular descaling of the espresso machine is one of the most important things you can do to prepare a magical cup of delicious and hearty espresso, and it goes without saying that doing this process regularly will also significantly increase the life of your espresso machine. Gives.

In our opinion, these two important reasons are completely reasonable and enough to motivate you to clean and prepare your espresso machine at least 3 to 4 times a year. Not knowing how and how to descale the espresso machine is no longer a good excuse for not doing it because it can interfere with one of the joys of your life, which is drinking coffee.

The reasons for the importance of descaling the espresso machine

There are many factors involved in making a delicious cup of espresso. You probably already know that the size, amount, and temperature of the water all have a big impact on the flavor of your espresso.

However, the only factor that can destroy the best balance of these three factors is the accumulation of sediment in the espresso machine.

Here are some of the main reasons espresso machine descaling is important.

The water is not able to reach the desired temperature for brewing

We know very well that the low temperature of the water in the direction of brewing espresso causes the extraction to not take place well and completely. On the other hand, high brewing temperature can cause problems such as excessive extraction.

Simply put, the higher the temperature of the water, the higher the percentage of ground coffee in your cup will be extracted. Although the changes in extraction performance are small, the brewing temperature will have a definite effect on the final taste (learn more about the effect of water in coffee preparation).

The taste of the espresso may be compromised

If the brewing temperature of the espresso machine varies due to sediment, it will be difficult for you to have two cups of espresso that taste the same.

It is generally accepted that the sweetness, body, and bitterness of coffee increase with increasing brewing temperature, while acidity decreases slightly.

As the brewing temperature goes down, the opposite happens. Therefore, as the temperature of the water decreases due to the accumulated sediment, your extraction becomes more acidic and as a result your cup of espresso coffee loses its magic, meaning the loss of the pleasant and constant taste of espresso.

Your espresso machine may be damaged due to deposits

The sediment in your espresso machine can accumulate so much that it blocks the flow of water inside your machine. If the sediment partially blocks the pipes of your device, the amount of water flowing will be limited to both sides of the steam path. If this happens to your espresso machine, it will not be able to heat the milk consistently.

If the deposit is so bad that the pipes of the machine are completely blocked, the machine will not produce steam or milk. Deposit accumulation can also occur on the boiler indicator. If this happens, the device cannot detect the water level correctly, which may lead to the boiler being overfilled and overflowing.

Here it is clear why the espresso machine should be descaled once in a while…

How often should you descale your espresso machine?

If you live in an area with high water hardness, we suggest descaling your espresso machine at relatively short intervals because sediment accumulation can cause serious problems in your machine. If you don’t clean your device regularly, it will be very difficult to remove the deposit afterwards.

Here are suggestions for how often you should descale your espresso machine. Depending on how much you use it and where you live, how hard the water is available to you.

  • If you live in an area with high water hardness and use your espresso machine up to 6 times a day, you should descale it monthly. If you live in an area with low water hardness and use your machine up to 6 times a day, you should descale it every 3 or 4 months.
  • If you live in an area with hard water and use your machine more than 6 times a day, you should descal every 3 weeks. If you live in an area with low water hardness and use your device more than 6 times a day, you should descale it every 2 months.

How to descale an espresso machine using citric acid?

To use citric acid to descale an espresso machine, you need a liter of water plus a tablespoon or two of citric acid to mix with it. If your water is naturally harder than ideal, you may need more citric acid in your solution. (for example, two cups).

Mix water and citric acid well in the container you use. We suggest using room temperature water for this, although you don’t need to focus too much on the water temperature. It can be a little warm or a little cool and it will not be a very sensitive and important issue for you.

Once you’ve mixed your citric acid solution with the water, it’s safe to give it a little taste – you’ll probably get a totally nasty taste on your tongue! Since it is completely natural, it will not harm you, although it may not be your new favorite drink.

Now it is enough to pour the citric acid solution + water into the boiler of your espresso machine and drain this water by filling the water tank and starting the espresso machine through Group.

Don’t forget to pass the water through the steam wand (Steam Wand) of the device so that the descaling of this part can be done well. You basically want to make sure that the solution goes through the small tubes in your machine as well to save everything from sediment. Continue working with the boiler until you run out of solution.

If you’re descaling a machine like the Rancilio Silvia, you don’t have to worry about the citric acid damaging the boiler, since this espresso machine has a brass boiler, but if you want any espresso machine Descale the aluminum boiler with citric acid. You must be careful because citric acid can be trapped in them if it is not passed properly.

How to descale your espresso machine using vinegar?

As you may have used vinegar in different situations to wash and descale items such as kettles and samovar, you know that using vinegar is very similar to using citric acid solution. You can use a variety of naturally occurring vinegars for this, but our method uses standard white vinegar instead of using a mixture or solution such as citric acid.

For the rest of the vinegar descaling steps, it is basically the same as described in the citric acid descaling method. Once again, make sure you don’t neglect your espresso machine’s steam nozzle, as it will probably build up a significant build-up of sediment over time, necessitating de-scaling of the nozzle.

After you’ve run the vinegar solution through your espresso machine for descaling, it’s time to do a thorough cleaning with fresh water to ensure that all the solution and residue left behind is removed from the espresso machine and mission accomplished. Finished!

Run the water through the machine until you feel the vinegar has been completely washed away. Again, you’re likely to encounter oddly colored water. In order to best clean your espresso machine, everything that can be washed separately should be considered and cleaned separately.

Descaling of a single boiler or thermoblock espresso machine

  • Dissolve the descaling agent completely in a tank of water.
  • Remove approximately one cup of the solution in the device through the steam nozzle and then close the steam valve.
  • Turn off the device and let it stand for 20 minutes. This issue is important so that the descaling solution can do its job completely.
  • After 20 minutes, remove about a quarter of the tank volume through the steam nozzle and another quarter through the espresso extraction point.
  • Turn off the machine and let it rest for another 20 minutes.
  • Remove the remaining water through the steam nozzle and portafilter and then wash the device once or twice with clean water to complete the descaling process.

Descaling of a super automatic espresso machine

If your machine has an automatic descaling cycle, refer to your espresso machine manual for instructions on how to perform the descaling process. For machines without automatic descaling cycle:

  • Dissolve the descaling agent completely in a tank.
  • Remove approximately one cup of the solution in the device through the steam nozzle and then close the steam valve.
  • Turn off the device and let it stand for 20 minutes. This is important for the descaling solution to do its job properly.
  • After 20 minutes, remove about half of the solution in the tank from the steam nozzle.
  • Turn off the machine and let it rest for another 20 minutes.
  • Pull out the remaining solution from the steam nozzle and then wash the device once or twice with clean water to complete the descaling process.

Recommended descaling products


used for single boiler, heat exchange and double boiler espresso machines. It is also suitable for manual, semi-automatic or super automatic espresso machines. The descaling of this product is natural and based on citric acid.

Durgol Swiss descaling product for espresso machines

a very popular descaling liquid that is compatible with all types of home espresso machines and performs the descaling process well.

Urnex Cleancaf

a combination of cleaning and detergent ingredients; It is suitable for descaling a coffee machine and cleaning baskets and small sediments. You can also use it for home espresso machines.



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