I recently acquired the same model of espresso maker. I have found that you have to turn it on, and give the water time to heat up before attempting to use the steam function. If you turn on the steam knob too early, it will shoot out a stream of water, so you have to wait till the water is hot enough... probably 3 minutes or so. I'm assuming that you already know that you just place the steam spout into a mug of milk to both heat it up and create foam simultaneously.
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It sounds like a heating element has gone out, you have seriously hard water that has damaged the system or you have a burned circuit. Without doing something I would not recommend with that type of system your only real choice would be to send it back for repair. If it is brand new it should have a 1 year warranty.
It depends on what type of espresso maker you have. Some have two boilers, many only have one. For the ones with a single boiler, there will be a dial or button to raise the temperature of the boiler enough to steam the milk into foam. Just be sure to drain the line of any excess water first. Once the water stops and steam starts coming out, then you can use the steamer to create foamy milk.
I too have the same problem wth HD5179..i took it to philips service centre...they barely looked at it and said SORRY NO SPARES for this model.It seems in INDIA philips does not have facilities to service home use exopresso machines...a sad state of affarirs
The pod holder has an O ring to seal the black plastic disc in,if it is not sealed you will end up with more volume and a weaker coffee without the foam,either knock the disc out and try and seat the O ring and then knock it back in or buy a new pod holder,I had this same problem
Sometimes the rubber seals on these can be very "stuck" after not being opened for a while - about the best way to free them is to pour a little hot (near boiling) water around the outside of the lid to soften up the seal, make sure you are trying to turn it the right way (anti-clockwise) and give it a little force.
You can help prevent this in future by lightly greasing the seal with a tiny bit of vegetable oil - sunflower oil works fine but most should do the job. if the rubber seal looks very distorted or cracked then take it to a hardware store and see if they can find something the right size or try philips support from the same link below.
get the user manual here (sorry not available in english, but is available in most other main languages)
Hope this helps :)