Every time you make a new serving of espresso or cappuccino, a residue of coffee oil remains in the espresso machine, milk powder and scale accumulate.
All of this over time can spoil the taste of the finished drink and become an excellent environment for bacteria. In order for the espresso machine to last a long time and the brewed coffee to be delicious, it must be cleaned properly. Deep cleaning your coffee machine at least once a month will help remove dirt from the inside of the device, prevent tartar build-up, and develop harmful microorganisms.
Generally, maintenance specialists recommend cleaning once a month at normal water hardness levels, but if the water is hard, cleaning should be done more frequently.
Now many coffee machines will let you know when it’s time to clean. Such devices have a unique built-in indicator that, after brewing a certain number of cups of coffee, will start to flash and inform you that it is time to clean the device.
If your espresso machine does not provide such a function, you will need to determine the need to clean yourself. It is easy to do this:
- The taste of coffee changes. It turns sour with an unpleasant bitterness.
- There is a scale residue on the bottom of the cup after drinking coffee.
- The water heating time has increased and the coffee spills into the cup with difficulty and with a slow drip.
- The device began to work louder, with creaking sounds.
How to choose cleaning products for an espresso machine
There is a range of fine espresso machines to choose from at home: capsule, caldea, horn. You can find out how to select the suitable one espresso machine for your home without losing your budget. Every time it is used, you can clean the surface of the device and do some minor procedures to keep it cool and tidy.
After a month or so, it will become clear that the home espresso machine needs to be thoroughly cleaned. Before continuing with the cleaning procedure, carefully read the instructions for the device. Most manufacturers provide recommendations on how to clean, how often, and which cleaning products to use.
Now, the household chemicals market offers many options for domestic and foreign manufacturers of espresso machine cleaning products. These include powdered and liquid substances, tablets and capsules. Each type has its advantages. Usually the cleaner is selected for a coffee machine from a particular company. Famous brands such as Saeco, Krups, DeLonghi, Bosch and others produce their cleaning products. They cost more, but the result is better. If you do not want to spend money, you can choose a cheaper analog.
Cleaning products differ not only in the way of implementation but also in purpose. For example, preparations for removing coffee oils are not suitable for descaling, that is, descaling. Before using the powder or liquid, it is necessary to consult the preparation instructions and the coffee machine. If you have lost the operation manual for your device, search for it on the Internet by entering the espresso machine model in the search bar.
All cleaning products contain acids in their composition, which come in handy with the removal of impurities. The product must not include the presence of toxic substances.
Powders are considered universal cleaning agents. Before use, the powder is mixed with water in specific proportions. Then, you pour it into a tank with water in the appliance. Powders effectively cope with the removal of scale and coffee oils; Avoid corrosion of the metal elements of the coffee machine. You can choose powdered products from the same brand as the coffee machine.
Liquid cleaners are easier to use. It is not necessary to dilute them with water beforehand, such as a powder. The liquid preparation is immediately poured into the water tank up to the highest mark.
Whichever tool you choose, read the instructions carefully. Non-compliance with proportions and improper cleaning of the coffee machine can damage the entire device.
Tablets and their type: Capsules, used for capsule squeezing machines, are a more modern and safer means of descaling. It is the same powder, just compressed into a tablet. This packaging is convenient because a tablet is used for a cleaning session. Manufacturers of cleaning tablets offer them in two versions: for descaling and removing coffee oils. The main thing to consider here is that one tablet does not replace another. If you need to descale, buy the right tablet. Before use, the tablet must be completely dissolved in water and only then can the cleaning process begin.
Automatic cleaning is the easiest way to remove scale and coffee oil residues from the brew unit. But not everyone has that function; Automatic cleaning is usually provided for more expensive models of espresso machines.
The process itself is quite simple – all you have to do is follow the instructions carefully, step by step.
- Clean the tray and the coffee grinder from coffee residues.
- Fill the tank with hot water to the maximum level.
- Pour in the previously prepared solution.
- Activate automatic cleaning. Cleaning normally takes about 5 minutes.
- After disconnecting, rinse the water tank and pour in clean water.
- Perform the usual coffee brewing mode twice.
- Then make coffee, but serve it. The first cup of coffee after descaling is necessary to remove chemical residues and clean the espresso machine.
Care and maintenance tips
Any equipment needs care and the espresso machine is no exception. Follow these simple rules and the coffee machine will last you a long time:
- Before buying a cleaning product, read the instructions for the coffee machine. Of course, it is better to give preference to cleaning products of the same brand.
- once every two weeks or once a month, do a full cleaning of the device
- Do not get carried away by home remedies. It may cause the espresso machine to break down.
- When making coffee, use purified water. Therefore, the scale will form more slowly.
- Rinse the cappuccino machine after each serving of the prepared drink.
- Use high-quality coffee beans or ground coffee from proven brands. Cheap coffee analogs can clog equipment.
Take care of the coffee machine regularly, and then it will always make you delicious aromatic coffee.