I had one for about 3yrs , it worked well and was used every morning & every night. I was very happy with it. I bought it in `02 or`03 - anyway not long after we got them into the store , and it died in `05. I then bought a Saeco gran Crema which was still working when i picked up my Bezzera in April this year.
After the first nearly 2 yrs it needed to have the brew valve replaced which cost about $75 from memory. about a 6mths later it happened again and then it stopped working all together a bit after that.
In the machines defense it was used everyday of the week & more days than not it was left on when i went to work and was still on when i came home 8hrs later then used for anothr hr or 2.
This machine was not meant to be left on and i am surprised now that it didn`t pack it in sooner with that type of treatment. On the weekends and days off i used to leave it on all the time - the machine led a hard life and i am sure that it would have lasted longer had i not flogged it. The Saeco Gran Crema that replaced was only on a max of about 2 hrs a day 1 in the morning and 1 at night and it`s still going - i passed it onto a friend of mine.
I was very happy with it and the coffee i made with it. It did alright with BBQs and when company was over, just had to wait a bit in between frothing and making coffee.
There is a lot more to chose from in this price range now than back then
Hope this helps. This is just my experience with the machine. As i used to sell the Gaggia domestic machines, i seldom heard of horror stories about it.