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Thread: help with cleaning my Silvia

  1. #1
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    help with cleaning my Silvia

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Hi everyone!

    Im about to do my first big clean on my Silvia - long overdue!

    Do I need to backflush with espresso machine cleaner and if so how do I do it exactly? What are the main things that I should clean ie do I need to remove anything? how often do I need to do this?
    cheers,
    Dom

  2. #2
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    Re: help with cleaning my Silvia

    Dom,

    When I cleaned my Silvia I simply followed the instruictions on the espresso cleaner packet i.e I dissolved the cleaner into the water tank and ran it through the tank, pump grouphead until all gone and then flushed a tank full of fresh water through. Backflushing with a little cleaner in the blind filter is a good idea. I lock my portafiller in with the blind basket (with cleaner) and run the brew switch for maybe 5 or 6 seconds until I hear the pump change pitch which indicates the system is pretty well pressurised, then switch the brew switch off which releases it all through the 3 way valve. Note however that IIRC backflushing is not recommended by Rancillio for the Silvia. I feel that the occasional backflush is OK and it sure clears out a heap of crap.

    You will need to remove the showerscreen too for a clean, best before all the flushing is done. This can be tricky as they are sometimes really tight and its easy to slip with a blade screwdriver and damage the screen. Try using a socket head to unscrew it before a screwdriver. Also, I found that removing the screw when the machine is warmed up is easier - but bloody hot!. The screen is easily cleaned once removed. I think I use warm soapy water.

    The rest like getting rid of grinds up in the grouphead seal is straight forward and if you clean after every use like I do you will find there is not much up there.

    There should be more info on this site and other about cleaning, have a good read first.

    Matt

  3. #3
    Mal Dimal's Avatar
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    Re: help with cleaning my Silvia

    Hi domc,

    Welcome to CoffeeSnobs and trust you will enjoy the experience ;D.

    A great site to do with most things related to Silvias, is Randy Glasss and this page here.... http://tinyurl.com/d9qaz explains how to backflush your Silvia and what goes on when you do it. Hope it helps out,

    Cheers,
    Mal.

  4. #4
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    Re: help with cleaning my Silvia

    Hi Dom,

    The reason Rancilio dont recommend backflushing is the Vibration Pump doesnt like overpressure against the blind filter. *

    It doesnt say this in the machine manual, but the manual doesnt say much else either.....

    Heres a gem : "The user has not to: wash the machine with water or vapour jet".....or ..." dip the machine in water or other liquid". * :-?

    Im glad I read that part *because I was giving serious consideration to soaking it the laundry tub and then hitting it with the Gerni. *:o

    Sorry back to the topic...
    *
    Some of the espresso cleaners instruction on the packaging say to flush for 10? seconds or so. This instruction i guess is intended for commercial machines with rotary pumps.

    With the Silvia & blind basket, the pump will start to labour almost instantly when the basket fills up with liquid which only takes a couple of seconds anyway. When this happens, switch the pump off pretty much immediately and the pressure which has already built up i this short time will flush the liquid back thru the 3way to clean the gunk out so theres no point running the pump any longer against "dead head" anyway.

    If you like reading: http://home.surewest.net/frcn/Coffee/HowToBackflush.html

    ..and if you really want to get technical theres a link on the page all about 3way valves & backflushing (10 pages worth!!!!) but its got piccies so thats OK

    Personally, I dont backflush often (laziness more than anything) but I do rinse the screen every day (or at the end of every use) with the blind basket fitted and the PF loosely in place jiggling it [the handle] about so when running the brew switch the water leaks out the edges, runs down the handle and scalds my fingers. * * I guess everybody does this so that makes it normal. Shes Italian and beautiful so you should expect to get burnt and learn to like it *(Anyone owned an Alfa?)

    I agree with MattG about removing the screen, need a steady hand with the flat blade screwdriver so best not after having "too many" doubles.
    A nylon brush & soapy water does the trick. Obviously dont use steel wool or any of the harsh chemicals or metal cleaners *that youd find in the cupboard under the kitchen sink at your Grandmas

    Happy scrubbing

    Steve *


  5. #5
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    Re: help with cleaning my Silvia

    oh...... the link i posted is actually the same one as Mals ....beat me by 40minutes whilst I was in the midst of my verbose waffling.

    Didnt see Mals post until after id hit the post button.
    Shouldve pressed the refresh key.

  6. #6
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    Re: help with cleaning my Silvia

    Oh Yeah,

    Forgot to add to my previous post to make sure you clean the water tank. It can build up deposits over time and get a little oridinary ;).

  7. #7
    Mal Dimal's Avatar
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    Re: help with cleaning my Silvia

    Quote Originally Posted by SteveA link=1154519964/0#4 date=1154533068
    oh...... the link i posted is actually the same one as Mals ....beat me by 40minutes whilst I was in the midst of my verbose waffling.

    Didnt see Mals post until after id hit the post button.
    Shouldve pressed the refresh key.
    Ya gotta be quick :P,

    Mal.

  8. #8
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    Re: help with cleaning my Silvia

    Behmor Brazen - $249 - Free Freight
    cheers for that guys - ill be onto it soon...time permitting of course!
    Dom

    ps. for all the Adelaideans out there Ive found coffeeparts.com are way cheaper than Rio Coffee (even factoring in freight) for all your cleaning needs at least - and probably everything else for that matter!



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