Tips for Keeping your Saeco fully functional.
Here's a few Tips for the countless number of people having problems with the Saeco Line Super Automatics Machines.
These are more Suggestions if you will on what you can do that will help your machine last as long as possible.
Tip 1. Surge Protector. Get one and use it on your machine. About half of the problems associated with saeco's revolve around a power....or lack of power problem.
Even the smallest Surge can send your machine out of whack. Worse yet if it loses power while in mid cycle, it can jam the brew system.
Tip 2. Bottled Water. Coffee is 90% Water, so by contrast quality water will increase the quality of the cup. Try an artisan water like fuji or italian bottled water, or even filtered water. This small tip will not only keep your machine insides clean, it'll make for a way better espresso.
Tip 3. Ditch the Oiley Beans. All Super Automatic Espresso Machines, even the 20,000 dollar commercials have one major flaw. They Hate Oiley Coffee Beans. Why? Its simple, Oiley Beans Gum Up the inside of the grinder and brew drive system and clog them.
Another Reason to Ditch Oiley Beans? Being a 2nd Generation Artisan Roaster Oiley Beans scream a few things. Oiley beans are usually over roasted. The oil on the beans isn't a good thing, the oil represents the flavor oils from inside of the coffee emerging out. Once they become oxodized the coffee loses flavor almost immediately. Oiley beans are also a sign of beans that have aged, which again, is not a good thing. Proper Espresso Should have very little to no Oil on the beans with a Uniform Color Darker then a city roast.
They Only Time there is an exception is with a french or dark roast, where the ashy tones are allowed.
Best Advice here is try to find a local roaster. The quality is usually better then any of the commercial corperate counterparts and your actually supporting people like you. What kind of people is that??? People who have a genuine love for coffee and want people to share that love.
Tip 4. Descaling. Even with bottled water the machine should be descaled every other month. You have a variety of options here. I personally use cleancaf for its ease of use and the fact every packet has the instructions on them.
Tip 5. Brew Group Cleaning. Clean the Brew Group with Soapy Water. No chemicals necessary. You'll also need to purchase some silicone lubricant which is sold by saeco. It must be food grade. The lubricant is applied around the inside ridge of the puck area of the brew group. The first 3 coffee's on the machine should be tossed there after to clear it of residue.
Tip 6. Turn Machine off after each use. When you don't need it, don't leave it on. Leaving it on for long periods of time creates air pockets inside the boiler of the machine and can dry out the inner gasket of the boiler unless you have the new J Style Boilers that come with the newer lines from Saeco.
Tip 7. Be careful of your grinder. Firstly, I tell people every day. This machine is not ment to make commercial quality espresso. Its just not possible. It was ment to make for a better experience than the traditional italian moka pots that make fairly terrible coffee. If you want a stronger coffee, then the answer is in itself, try other coffee's.
The machine enhances good coffee, and by comparison, enhances the flaws in bad coffee. Inferior Coffee's will have little crema and bad taste. The machine will try the best it can to accomodate the coffee. The Elongated pre infusion cycle help take even the worst coffee and make it look like it gives increadible crema. The proof comes afterwards, where the crema will decipate from the bad coffee's but will stay strong on the true espresso blends.
Setting the grinder any lower then 2, regardless of the model, it warrent for clogging and/or damaging the unit. If the coffee is too fine, it'll clog the unit, and usually cause the brew drive to strip the gears and even worse, i've come across cases where its even broken the brew drive.
This concludes my Tips for Keeping your Saeco functional post. I hope this helps people and gives them incentive to step out of the box when it comes to conventional coffee's that are on the market.
on May 27, 2008 | Saeco Royal Professional Espresso Machine