For the best coffee drinking experience, you need to clean your espresso machine regularly. Neglecting to clean and maintain your espresso machine leads to residual milk and coffee ground building up, which ultimately affects the taste of your coffee and may damage your espresso machine. For this reason, it is essential to maintain and keep your machine clean at all times.
While they are high-end and complex, you will be surprised just how easy it is to clean an espresso machine.
Do you have an espresso machine but do not know how to clean it? Keep reading to learn how to clean and maintain your espresso machine.
What Is An Espresso Machine?
An espresso machine is an appliance that brews espresso, an Italian drink that has been adopted by coffee lovers globally. There are different espresso machine models available for at home or commercial use. An espresso machine differs from a coffee maker in that it produces espresso by pumping 1.5 ounces of hot water through firmly packed thinly ground espresso coffee. The result is a shot of espresso, which is a slightly thick dark brown liquid with a bit of crema on top.
Depending on your preference, you can make different espresso variations with your espresso machine.
How Does An Espresso Machine Work?
An espresso machine comprises different parts and pieces that work together to make a quality espresso. You will start by pouring coffee grounds into the portafilter, then compress them by pushing them into the tamp, where the portafilter is locked in place on the group head. Next, the machine will brew water from its water source, and the pump will send the pressurised water via the group head holding the portafilter.
The water will then pass through the coffee into a cup. In a different cup, the steam wand heats the milk. Essentially, the machine pumps boiled water from the boiler and turns it into steam before it comes off the end of the steam wand to heat the milk.
How Often Should You Clean Your Espresso Machine?
How often you clean your machine may vary depending on how often you use the machine. Overall, you should establish a cleaning and maintenance routine that includes regular checkups and replacing specific parts annually. When you replace the smaller parts regularly, you can avoid corrective maintenance, which can be pricey and mean you cannot use the machine until it is fully repaired. However, there is daily, fortnightly, monthly, and annually annual cleaning that should be performed.
How To Clean Your Espresso Machine
There are different ways to clean your espresso machine. How you clean your machine will vary depending on the dirt buildup and the maintenance you have given the machine. Here are the different ways to clean your espresso machine:
Daily Espresso Machine Cleaning
It is essential to clean as you work. There are different daily cleaning and maintaining habits you should employ. For instance, wipe the steam wand after use, purge the steam wand after and before use, and flash the group head before a round of espresso. Old grounds and oils from the coffee beans may add an undesirable flavour to your shot of espresso.
It also helps to ensure your cleaning cloths stay fresh, clean the drip tray, portafilter baskets, and draining hose. A water backflush is also crucial to maintaining your machine, and you can wipe down the dispersion screen afterwards. You can also brush the group head to remove and loosen coffee grounds, then use the blind filter and coffee machine detergent and repeat the process till the water comes out clean.
Every 2-4 Weeks Espresso Machine Cleaning
During this period, you need to do a complete espresso machine clean. Start by taking out the dispersion screen and soaking it and the portafilter basket in a cleaning solution. Then do a group head brush scrub and a full detergent backflush.
You can also take this time to wipe down the whole espresso machine and repeat all the other daily cleaning procedures.
Every 6 Months Espresso Machine Cleaning
Cleaning your espresso machine every day is not enough. Ensure that you clean the steam wand (this only applies if you use it) and your grinder every six months.
This is also an excellent time for you to check your water filter softening system and replace it. It would help if you also considered changing the portafilter baskets and shower screens as it helps prevent leaks between the group head and the portafilter. Drain the steam tank of your espresso machine after every six months to avoid a calcified steam tank, especially if your water is mineral-heavy.
Annual Espresso Machine Cleaning
It is essential to clean your machine annually and even use professional help for this. It would help if you also aimed to replace parts like the waste pipe, brew actuator bearing, expansion valve, shoulder bolt sims, hot water and steam valves, and anti-suction valve.
It also helps to check your portafilter baskets and see if they need replacing. While all these items are expensive to replace, they present a better alternative to closing your cafe and waiting for the machine to get fixed.
Cleaning and maintaining your espresso machine is essential. It ensures you make quality espresso as there is no buildup to interfere with the flavours. Maintaining your machine also improves its longevity.
Get Your Own Espresso Machine From The Artisan Barista!
At The Artisan Barista, our goal is to provide our clients with the best espresso gear and tools. Whether you want to start a cafe or want to brew authentic espresso in the comfort of your home, we have got you covered. We have a number of high-quality espresso machines you can choose from depending on your preference.