is there supposed to be a rubber ring on the lid to help force the steam out through the steamer? Because mine is bubbling up out of the top, and I think there used to be a rubber ring, but can't remember.
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My XP5240 also started blowing the steamer wand off after about 3 months of use, despite fiollowing the Krups cleaning instructions. Here's what I did to fix it.
A: The Problems. The wand has three holes in the coffee end (center, and on each side). The center hole gets blocked with milk residue. This causes a pressure build up in the wand assembly, and eventually this is enough pressure to overcome the three gripping clips that hold the wand to the nozzle tube. I suspect this was an intentional design for safety. It's unfortunate that it also sprays the user with milk when it lets go.
The second problem is that removing the wand requires that the outer clip retainer ring to be slid down to release the clips. Many users don't realize this and try to pry or twist the wand off. This breaks the clips.
B: The Solution The wand has to be regularly and throughly cleaned. Just soaking it is not enough. Do it this way:
1. Slide the clip retainer ring down, and then hold the steam tube and gently move the wand straight down. DO NOT try to twist the wand to one side, or you WILL break the clips.
2. Holding the ring, unscrew the coffee nozzle end. The wand separates into three parts: Outer tube, inner steam tube and decorative cylinder.
3. Use a needle or very fine wire (approx 0.4mm) to clear the three holes in the coffee end nozzle.
4. You now need to clear the metal wand tube of milk residue. I found that a 7/64" drill bit was perfect to do this, as it fits snugly in the tube. The amount of gunk removed was surprising.
5. Blow the tube clear from both ends. If it's clean, you will be able to see light through all three holes. If not, go back to step #3.
6. Make sure that there is no milk residue on the steamer tube nozzle where the wand clips on. Milk contains fat, and this is an unwanted lubricant.
After cleaning, my steamer works properly for several days. I also located a 21mm ID O-ring at the local hardware store to hook over the clips. This provides a bit more clip gripping pressure, but will still allow the wand to come off should steam pressure gets excessive.
Check the end of the steam valve, if that is not blocked, check where the wand connects to the valve, on some models they inserted a teflon piece that was supposed to hep the machine with steaming but that gets blocked, remove and throw away.
When steaming the milk/cream make sure to hold the rubber nozzle to the very bottom of the cup and also make sure you are leaving enough water to produce the steam after brewing a cup of espresso. Also you'll want to check the breather tube that sticks up from the nozzle and make sure it is free of buildup.When the steamer is operating correctly it should produce a loud growling sound.
the proper replacement steam ring has an up-side & down side. the brew-head plate must be installed with the grooved side facing up; the steam ring has a groove in one side that fits over the top up the brew-head plate...does this solve the problem? if not, you may have the wrong steam ring/the brewhead plate may be installed incorrectly...oh, nov of 08...i seriously hope you've figured this out already. if not, you don't happen to still have machine in your possession, do you? if so, i'll buy it for $5.
Both tubes must be in the water. If you haven't used the machine for awhile, fill the water canister, turn the espresso maker on and also turn on the delivery switch (the top switch on the EC140). You'll hear the pump and in a second or two water will begin to exit the boiler nozzle. Immediately turn the delivery switch off. Wait for the "OK" light to come on. Press the "Steam" switch (the middle switch on the EC140, place an empty cup under the frother and turn the steam control knob on top in the counterclockwise direction. Steam will come from the frother. Be very careful to avoid contact with this steam.
Not dim, though you may need to find a long screwdriver.
I've already disassembled my machine, which is the ES37S model. Yes, you remove the rubber stopper. Then you take a long and skinny screwdriver and remove the phillips-head screw at the bottom of that hole. With that screw removed, the entire plastic top of the machine comes off.
I still need to find the milk-steamer knob, which is broken on mine, so I'm in search of a parts distributor. If you have any idea where I can find Briel parts in the US, I would appreciate any contact info you may have. Thank you. ;)
Try opening the frothing valve by turning the dial and force water through it instead of steam by pressing the middle, coffee button. You may be experiencing vapor lock. Once the water comes through the steamer valve, turn the steamer knob off and release the coffee button. Then try the steamer button with the steamer dial open. This may do the trick.
This is not a fix but it may be a way to at least get an espresso without milk. I opened the panel on the back and removed the to wires at the top of the circut panel. They are both fixed to a plug so all you have to do is gently pull. This turned of the steam/water function and the the water came through the head as it is suppose to. I did not get all the parts with mine so if anyone tries this please post the outcome. Remember to unplug the machine before you open the back. I will post the real fix if I figure it out.