I have had two machines, firstly Sunbeam Piccolo Espresso and after about 3 months its stopped a) Producing Steam and b) No cofee would dispense.
So we took it back, got it swapped over for the Sunbeam Cafe Crema II about a week ago.
Now this machine has done something similiar, a) Coffee comes out but it is extremely slow to dispense.
It is still steaming perfectly fine just slow to dispense coffee and I am talking 10 minutes for it to produce enough coffee for one shot.
So couple of questions -
1) What am I doing wrong or is this just crap quality we only make a coffee in the morning, we simply put the coffee in press it down and click the button / turn the dial is there a magic process to stop this continually happening?
2) What would you recommend for a coffee machine / grinder in the vicinity of 200 - 500?
10 minutes for 1 shot?!?!?!?!?!?!
I would suggest doing some reading on the very basics of grind, tamping, and the 30 second shot principle.
The machine isn't the best, but is still capable of producing decent coffee when used properly.
I'm guessing here but your post reads like you aren't grinding? Are you using pre-ground coffee? If so, sounds like it's too fine, which would be unusual because normally pre-ground is too coarse.
But what burr says - learn the process. Almost all problems come back to the grind/dose/tamp part of the process unless you've gone REALLY cheap on the machine and it can't produce the pressure needed.
You'd be better spending the money on a decent grinder and start buying beans. You can get a new Sunbeam EM0480 for around $160 or so at Good Guys.
OP is most likely using pre-ground coffee, most of the problem would be watery/running too fast instead of too slow?? EM4820 comes with Single & Double Dual-Floor Filters, can try double shot with 2/3 ground coffee not tamping too hard. Otherwise should try single wall non pressurized filter with fresh grind coffee/good tamper, I can get acceptable espresso from my ESP8C without dramas many years ago.
You could test the pump by running a brew cycle without the basket in the portafilter and with a large mug or cup under it. It should pump about 200 -300ml of water in about 15 to 20 seconds. If it is much less than this, you probably have a faulty pump, or an internal blockage. If it pumps plenty of water, then the problem is in the basket.
If so, my guess is that you are using the double wall baskets and the tiny hole in the bottom of the outer basket is clogged. I believe that the Sunbeams come with a little tool to fix this. Just poke the fine wire into the hole, wriggle it around a bit and see if that fixes it.
I've had the same problem many times,common with double floor baskets, I now find the ideal solution is,prior to filling your basket with coffee and better still before you even place your basket in the group handle,hold up the basket to a light source, if you cannot clearly see light through the pin hole......check for blockage.
Most sunbeam espresso models come equipped with a pin tool located under the removable water tank,used to clear this likely problem,works for me on all my d/floored baskets,good luck.