Question about Bialetti Moka Express 6-Cup Coffee Maker

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I have just bought a new Bialetti 6 cup and am frustrated beyond belief. The first time I used it, I got a small amount of coffee. Since then, I haven't gotten even a drop. Steam comes out of the spout but no coffee rises into the chamber. I have the water filled to just below the pressure nozzle and the basket full of expresso ground coffee. I took everything apart to make sure there were not blockages, have tried brewing on medium and high temperatures,and still only steam. Any suggestions??

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  • kellyros Aug 23, 2010

    Thanks for your suggestions! I did everything that you suggested but the problem remains. First I cleaned all parts and tried 2 rounds of just water in the coffee maker. They worked perfectly and took 10 minutes each to complete the "brewing". I ground up some fresh coffee making sure to make it coarser than what I usually have .It was a little coarser than white sugar. I filled the basket close to the rim and did not touch it. On went the top nice and snug, onto the element just as the previous two trial runs, and in 10 minutes I was seeing lots of steam but no coffee. I'm stumped! What do I try next? :)

  • kellyros Aug 24, 2010

    I continue to not get coffee! I have followed all of the suggestions but still am not getting my coffee maker to cooperate. When I brew just water and leave the coffee basket empty, the water is pushed up into the upper chamber as it is suppose to. I have tried several different types of coffee grains...fine, medium, and coarse. I have filled the basket with coffee to almost level with the top and not pushed it down. I have filled the water to just below the valve. I have tried medium and high heat. I am so stumped as to why I am still not getting coffee. Please help me before I throw the whole thing out.


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Yep, load of suggestions. Moka are quite difficult to use if you are not used to them:

Try cleaning the filter. It may be clogged after brewing in the wrong way.To clean, remove rubber gasket, remove filter disk from upper part of the Moka, and clean it.
The gasket must be replaced if there had been overheating. In that case the gasket looks stiff, melted, and the moka may drip water from water container sides while brewing.
If gasket looks Ok, leave it.

Ensure that water level is BELOW the valve, if water is covering the valve, there will be no space for air chamber before reaching coffee, and you get only steam. If there is water getting inside the coffee basket before pouring coffee, then water level is too high.

Put coffee until you reach more or less the edge of container basket. DO NOT PRESS coffee, or you will get a strong bad-testing coffeee or only steam.

About the flame, use a small hob, with flame staying below the base of the water container. A technique is keeping flame lower while reaching boiling point, then putting it up when the moka starts brewing. I suggest just keeping a well heating flame on a small knob and ensuring that the flame is staying below the base of the moka.

Ensure that the coffee mix is not too fine-grinded, even if Italians use often electric coffee machines in moka, it may result more difficult to get a brew out of thin-grinded coffee.
Percolated machine coarser mixtures will give a milder brew, but they are easier to use. Mokas brew like Lavazza are the best.

If that still does not do the job, try doing a couple of brews with water only, then do a coffee brew following hints above.

Extra hint: to get the best brew use purest possible water. Use Arabica blend for a fuller taste.

Let me know if the moka is finally working, in that case please do not forget to accept the solution.

All the best.


Posted on Aug 23, 2010

  • Ginko
    Ginko Aug 23, 2010

    Did you ensure that water level was right below valve? Level must be touching the lower edge of valve, but must stay below the valve, check from the inside of water reservoir before placing the coffee basket.

    Also ensure that coffee had not been pressed inside the basket.

    The cap of the Moka must also stay closed most of te time while brewing, or top of the steam may get too cold resulting in brew not reaching the top.

    Also check that coffee basket is not clogged by blowing in the trunkated cone pipe at the base of the basket.

    Did you try brewing with no coffee? If that works, then the moka works too, and you are doing something wrong in procedure.


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For some reason this is not assembled correctly at the factory. Take it back for exchange instead

Posted on Aug 25, 2010

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