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Thread: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

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    Senior Member coffeechris's Avatar
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    Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

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

    I concerned about my expobar minore, i did some research and decided to descale my machine. I thought i read up on the right information and what to do. After descaling to what i had learnt and the directions it now has this awful metalic acidic taste which i dont seem to be able to flush out.. After reading on here and a few other places i see some say dont flush through the steam wand??

    the water coming out of the hot water tap on the right seems ok, yet the water out of the head has a funny tatse as does the steam wand. how is this when the water for the head and the hot water come from the same boiler? I am hoping i have not damaged the machine and was wondering what i should do to get ride of that taste?? I have flushed the machine with water over and over again.....

    if someone has some infomation on what i may have done and how i can go about fixing it, it would be greatly appricated :)

    Chris :)

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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    Yes Chris- you have a brew boiler full of descaler. Dual boiler machines are difficult to descale.

    Best bet is to flush a heap of water through the group. Try perhaps 10 litres in the hope of diluting the descaler sufficiently so that you can use your machine.

    Failing that, you can disassemble sufficiently to drain the brew boiler, then refill with fresh water before reassembly.

    As always with descaling, you only do it if required ;)

    Good luck.

    Chris

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    Senior Member coffeechris's Avatar
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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    Thanks very much for your quick infomation on this, i will do what you have said in hope i dont need to dismantle to drain the boiler? If i do need to do that is it a easy process??

    I have taken in your last comment most of all "As always with descaling, you only do it if required"..... :)

    Once again thank you

    regards,

    Chris

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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    Hi Chris and Chris,
    Whats the easiest way to find out if your Expobar needs a descale? Ive heard of checking the mushroom? Ive had mine 2 years and havent descaled yet. Use water straight from the tap to fill the tank.
    Coffee tastes great but im worried of the evil that could be lurking in my boiler

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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    Quote Originally Posted by 0C343D281E33255C0 link=1321299560/3#3 date=1321311153
    Hi Chris and Chris,
    Whats the easiest way to find out if your Expobar needs a descale? Ive heard of checking the mushroom? Ive had mine 2 years and havent descaled yet. Use water straight from the tap to fill the tank.
    Coffee tastes great but im worried of the evil that could be lurking in my boiler
    Go the mushroom PB,

    Might be worth looking at some filtration. Prevention is*way more desirable than cure- esprcially with dual boiler stuff ;)

    Chris

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    Senior Member coffeechris's Avatar
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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    Quote Originally Posted by 477F766355786E170 link=1321299560/3#3 date=1321311153
    Hi Chris and Chris,
    Whats the easiest way to find out if your Expobar needs a descale? Ive heard of checking the mushroom? Ive had mine 2 years and havent descaled yet. Use water straight from the tap to fill the tank.
    Coffee tastes great but im worried of the evil that could be lurking in my boiler

    I was told i need to descale often, yet i have also been told i dont need ot descale at all so i cant answer you. Im still trying to flush my machine out to get rid of this taste. I think it might be option B and drain the boiler. Can someone tell me how i should go about this? or should i take it to someone too look at?

    Phatboy i hope you get a resolve with your 3 way valve. There is nothing worse than your one love not working properly...

    Chris

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    Senior Member fatboy_1999's Avatar
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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    Yep - check the mushroom as an indicator of whether you need to descale. I have a reminder to check mine every 6 months and if I look at the mushroom and it still seems pretty good, I set the reminder for another 3 months.

    Flushing water through the dual boiler takes a while. I usually have the machine out of coffee making action for about 5 hours all up. All the while comparing this green tinged water coming out of my machine with clean water to see the progress.

    I actually keep about 4 samples along the way just to remind myself that I AM making progress.

    Brett.

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    Senior Member coffeechris's Avatar
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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    i dont want to sound silly but when you imply about checking on the mushroom, what do you mean? please explain :) Im still cleaning out the machine with water, but im comparing the water from the group head and steam wand to that of the tap should i be doing this or is there a difference?


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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    Quote Originally Posted by 49454C4C4F4F49425843592A0 link=1321299560/7#7 date=1321348223
    i dont want to sound silly but when you imply about checking on the mushroom, what do you mean? please explain :) Im still cleaning out the machine with water, but im comparing the water from the group head and steam wand to that of the tap should i be doing this or is there a difference?
    Here is a good page showing the mushroom
    http://coffeetime.wikidot.com/the-mystery-of-the-e61-group-mushroom

    As for the comparing of water, I look for the machine water to be close to the tap sample and when it is, I then go by taste. Not swallowing mouthfuls, just a dab on the tongue to see that there is no metallic or chemical taste left. Once happy, pull a shot and throw it down the sink and then pull another one to actually drink and see how it stacks up.

    My understanding of the dual boilers is that brew water comes from one and steam/hot water comes from the other, so I would be drawing water through the hot water tap rather than the steam wand.
    See:
    http://expobaraustralia.com.au/index/modules/load/Catalogue/page/coffee_machines/category_id/7/menu/2/product_id/82


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    Senior Member coffeechris's Avatar
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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    thanks for that info fatboy, it gives me a understanding of the process. So from what you were saying from youre understanding the water for the steam and the hot water come from the same boiler?
    I must say im still not happy with the taste and i have flushed the machine so many times. Im thinking i should empty the boilers.

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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    Yes - The water for steam and hot water come from the same boiler.

    The process you followed with the descale soultion to begin with, will have put it into one or both of the boilers.

    One other point. You have probably done this, but just in case... make sure you remove and clean your plastic water tank as well, as there may be descale residue in there as well. And that would impede your progress once into the flushing part of the process.

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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    Where do you guys get your descale solution from?

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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    I have used cafetto restore, which I got from Coffeeparts, and Cleancaf from Coffee-a-roma.

    I have only used Cleancaf once so far. I grabbed it as I was in there buying ACF cups and needed some as my cafetto had run out.

    Both products appeared to handle the job well, but I would lean towards cafetto as my choice moving forward.

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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    Fatboy did you replace your little filter that sits in the water tank?

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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    I have done so twice in my machines lifetime.

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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    Is my mushroom really dirty?


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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    To me it looks EXTREMELY dirty.
    The all dull black part is shiny chrome when new (and hopefully retains some of that underneath).

    2 years on tap water - I think it shows.

    But I am no expert - perhaps one of the sponsors who see more of these than me can confirm?

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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    Hi Massimo,

    It shows some scale at the bottom and I suspect the black oxidation is most likely salt or corrosion caused by salt (chloride ions).

    I wouldnt descale at this point, but would recommend you invest in some quality filtration.

    Chris

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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    Hi Chris....What filtration what would you recommend?

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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    Quote Originally Posted by 6951584D7B5640390 link=1321299560/18#18 date=1321424323
    Hi Chris....What filtration what would you recommend?
    Bernard of Bombora supplies is the expert and his recommendation is the Brita C150- Australia wide.

    Cheers

    C

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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    Quote Originally Posted by 2F283D2B26301678707070490 link=1321299560/14#14 date=1321420691
    I have done so twice in my machines lifetime.
    Did you order a new filter from Expobar direct?

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    Senior Member fatboy_1999's Avatar
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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    Bombora - via their retail website.
    http://fridgefilters.com.au/In-tank-Resin-Water-Filter/
    Hope the link is OK mods!

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    Senior Member coffeechris's Avatar
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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    well after trying and trying to pump water through to get the acidic taste out its gotten better but not good enough... So i called expobar who dont advise putting a descal type fluid through these machines. I wish i had have asked that before i put it through the machine.

    So i can do one of two things take it to them to do take it apart and clean out the boilers. Or attempt to do this process myself??? whats to do what to do any advice???

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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    How many litres of fresh water have you flushed through Chris. What did Expobar recommend to use?

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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    Something that I found made the whole task easier for me (not with my DJE-DB yet), was to disconnect a pipe from the top and bottom areas of the Boiler. Then using suitable high pressure-ish hose (reinforced garden hose is OK), connect this to a pond-pump through a reservoir to save water, or straight to the garden tap if water loss isnt a big issue, then flush away to your hearts content. Water goes in the bottom and out the top.

    If you want to flush through the Group (E-61), reconnect the top connection and open the Group Actuating Lever and capture the water via what ever method or arrangement will work best for you. Other Group designs will require alternative temporary reconfiguration in order to flush out this way.

    The pond-pump we have uses a ceramic spherical impeller setup that is completely sealed so I also used this to continually recirculate descaling solution through the boiler until completely clean. Just makes the entire process less messy and easier to manage. We already had the pond-pump so very little extra expense was involved... These are only very general guidelines, as what suited me may not suit someone else. Might be worth a try though.... :)

    Mal.

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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    phat boy, to be honest i believe i have put more than 15 litres through. Although the taste has somewhat improved its still not to where it should be. It seems whenever i turn it off and come to use it again the next morning the taste has regained some strenght in the taste again....

    Expobar did recommend to use anything? which i will take up with them when i go there....??

    Mel thanks for the advice, i have a pool pump I had a laugh.... but i decided late last night that i would take the machine down today and let them have a look at it. Even though i would like to pull it apart and have a look, im just not 100 % sure on where to start and what i may detroy on it??

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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    The Expobar boys will get it right for you Chris ;)

    I guess this thread is a heads up to all of those with dual boiler machines.

    So far, we have been fortunate to have not been asked to run a descale on a dual boiler and I am hoping that continues for a long time.

    I am currently running Bomboras Brita C150 on the LM at home and after 3 years of great water with a replacement each year, the machines squeaky clean. If/when, it will also be removal of the brew boiler as per Mals method. Its not too tough on the LM, but its a mongrel job requiring significant disassembly on the Alex Duetto for example. Id think the labour component could run to 3 or 4 hours to do it properly.

    For mine, unless youre running your espresso machine on filtered rainwater, its false economy not to invest in quality water softening filtration.

    Chris

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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    You have confirmed what i thought would be the best thing to do and thats to take it to expobar so they can tinker with it. I could give it ago but i think someone who knows the machine inside and out would be the far better option.

    You were saying about the a quility water sotfener? what sort of water softener is suitable for machines like this, as i want to invest in something to keep my machine in good condition...

    regards,

    Chris

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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    Quote Originally Posted by 5A565F5F5C5C5A514B504A390 link=1321299560/27#27 date=1321569738
    You were saying about the a quility water sotfener? what sort of water softener is suitable for machines like this, as i want to invest in something to keep my machine in good condition...
    Quote Originally Posted by 6D585552667A565F5F5C5C390 link=1321299560/26#26 date=1321562712
    I am currently running Bomboras Brita C150
    ;)

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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    after taking my machine back to expobar, it still hasnt fixed my problem of the citric acid taste in my machine. Like me they flushed a large amount of water through the machine. There advice was to taking apart the machine and soaking the parts affected in water and a neutraliser which i am wary about doing ( the pulling apart scares me ). However that what i am going to do to try and fix it. So if there is anyone out there who can give me some dos and donts when doing this it would be very appreciated.

    Also this is a warning for anyone to think twice before putting anything but water through a machine like a expobar minore and others like it

    Cheers

    Chris

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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    Couldnt they have done that for you?

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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    Theres some dos and donts in this thread below from when I was seeking espresso wisdom before pulling my machine apart.
    I also learnt from reading heaps of the rebuild threads to see what went right and wrong for others in their rebuilds.


    http://coffeesnobs.com.au/YaBB.pl?num=1318835557

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    Re: Expobar minore and descaling, problem????

    phatboy yeah they could have done it for me i think, they seemed to me pretty busy and not too keen to do it though. Which is ok i would like to try it myself. If i have trouble doing it im sure they will be helpful in directing me in the right direction.
    pavoniboy, thanks for the useful information i will have a good read through it :)

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    Assuming that you de-assemble the machine, would it be safe to then use CLR?

    Is it the case that you have to replace all the seals / gaskets or are the pretty sturdy?

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    Quote Originally Posted by BeanMonkey View Post
    Assuming that you de-assemble the machine, would it be safe to then use CLR?

    Is it the case that you have to replace all the seals / gaskets or are the pretty sturdy?
    No. Buy a commercial descaler formulated for espresso machines. http://coffeesnobs.com.au/brewing-eq...r-descale.html
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    Senior Member Yelta's Avatar
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    Why oh why do people keep wanting to pour strange chemical cleaning concoctions into their machines, is it simply to save a few bucks or are they just not real smart?

    Reminds me of this little gem I read years ago.

    Difficulty arises when specialists must communicate with the general public.

    A refreshing example can best be provided by the following little story: There was once a plumber of foreign extraction who wrote to the Bureau of Standards in Washington, D.C., that he had found hydrochloric acid was fine for cleaning drains, and that it was harmless. Washington replied: "The efficacy of hydrochloric acid is indisputable, but the corrosive residue is incompatible with metallic permanence." The plumber wrote back that he was mighty glad the Bureau agreed with him. The Bureau replied with a note of alarm: "We cannot assume responsibility for the production of toxic and noxious residues with hydrochloric acid and suggest you use an alternative procedure." The plumber wrote he was happy to learn that the Bureau still agreed with him. Whereupon, Washington exploded: "Don't use hydrochloric acid, it eats the hell out of pipes!!"
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    I was thinking of pulling a descale on my HX machine only to discover that almost no scale on the mushroom... There was just very faintest greening on the bottom of the mushroom which came off with a wipe. Although the chrome has started peeling off on one side of the mushroom... Is this normal for a machine that's just 1 year old?

    im just wondering if the peeling is caused by scale which might have been removed through chemical backflushing.

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    Thanks guys for the tips. Never liked the idea of CLR. $10 for the proper stuff is reasonable, considering CLR is about $17. As with car detailing, the least aggressive approach should be used first, then step it up if desired results aren't met.

    Still need my question answered regarding seals and o-rings. Coffee machines aren't like motorcycles, where you buy a rebuild gasket kit that has everything in the pack.

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    Quote Originally Posted by javatime View Post
    Although the chrome has started peeling off on one side of the mushroom... Is this normal for a machine that's just 1 year old?

    Yep .... nothing to worry about

    BTW don't be scared of doing a descale, just do it when necessary. I inspect mushroom in my machines every New Year and then descale or hold off.

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    Having just bought some proper descaling solution to have handy for my Expobar dual boiler which I have had for only 3 months I am VERY glad to have read this thread. I will not be descaling!

    The recommended Brita C150 system is about $400 + plumber fee to install if necessary.

    My question is about the resin filter.

    I use a simple on tap Brita filter to fill the machine with filtered de-chlorinated water and have assumed the resin filter descales the water. Is this correct?

    If it is effective it can be recharged by flushing with salt or you can buy a new one for about $9.00 and they are said to last for 3 months. For the cost of the C150 alone I can buy about 40 of these which would last 10 years!!!

    Thoughts?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Talk_Coffee View Post
    I bought some commercial descaler today. The one I bought is concentrated. You add 25ml to a liter of water and place it in the water reservoir.

    I took out the mushroom and inspected it. Was pretty good but did have some small traces of scale. When I removed the scale that the solution didn't remove the chrome was gone and revealed sections of copper. So, I decided to strip down the group and let all the parts soak for ages. The descaling solution was crap and did absolutely nothing. I ended up have to use it un-diluted for it to do anything. How is it suppose to work in your tank if it can't remove scale from a part that was soaking for hours.

    I ended up having to clean it all by hand. Not sure what I'm going to do about the tanks. :/

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    Senior Member Yelta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BeanMonkey View Post
    I bought some commercial descaler today. The one I bought is concentrated. You add 25ml to a liter of water and place it in the water reservoir.

    I took out the mushroom and inspected it. Was pretty good but did have some small traces of scale. When I removed the scale that the solution didn't remove the chrome was gone and revealed sections of copper. So, I decided to strip down the group and let all the parts soak for ages. The descaling solution was crap and did absolutely nothing. I ended up have to use it un-diluted for it to do anything. How is it suppose to work in your tank if it can't remove scale from a part that was soaking for hours.

    I ended up having to clean it all by hand. Not sure what I'm going to do about the tanks. :/
    What brand of descaler did you buy?

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    Clean Machine

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    Senior Member Yelta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BeanMonkey View Post
    Clean Machine
    Clean Machine is a back flushing powder not a descaler, back flushing is an entirely different operation to descaling.

    What you need to descale is something similar to this, Cafetto Restore Descaler.
    Barista Accessories Cafetto Coffee Machine and Grinder Cleaning Products | Coffee Parts

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    Quote Originally Posted by Yelta View Post
    Clean Machine is a back flushing powder not a descaler, back flushing is an entirely different operation to descaling.

    What you need to descale is something similar to this, Cafetto Restore Descaler.
    Barista Accessories Cafetto Coffee Machine and Grinder Cleaning Products | Coffee Parts
    Commercial link removed per site posting policy
    Last edited by Javaphile; 9th November 2014 at 09:48 PM. Reason: Commercial link(s) removed

  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yelta View Post
    Clean Machine is a back flushing powder not a descaler, back flushing is an entirely different operation to descaling.
    Yeppers- backflushing sure is different to descaling Yelta. We often get new players who confuse them or assume that backwash detergent is descaler.

    Good rule of thumb:



    Chris
    Last edited by TC; 9th November 2014 at 04:32 PM. Reason: more info

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    Chris,

    You you agreeing with Yelta in saying that I'm using the wrong stuff?

    Cause I got it from one of the site sponsors and spoke at length with the machine technician there about the products and what to do etc.

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    Beanmokey, if the link you provided is for the product you're using for descaling I wouldn't be too concerned.

    Yelta appears to have jumped to conclusions and Chris appears to have suffered a bout of groupthink. Surprisingly, Chris has even provided a link to a "Clean Machine" brand descaler, but a different one to that which you identified.

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    Senior Member Barry O'Speedwagon's Avatar
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    .....or maybe Chris was just saying 'yeppers' to the statement that backflushing is a different operation to de-scaling (given that he followed that statement of agreement with links to the two alternate products).
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    Quote Originally Posted by Barry O'Speedwagon View Post
    .....or maybe Chris was just saying 'yeppers' to the statement that backflushing is a different operation to de-scaling (given that he followed that statement of agreement with links to the two alternate products).
    Got it in one Barry

    Not a case of "groupthink" rather a note for those who may read the thread in the future.

    We have seen plenty of machines backflushed with descaler and descaled with backflush detergent. One might call it a trap for new players.

    BM I am well aware that Clean Machine produce a liquid descaler. Regardless, we prefer the performance of the powdered product that I pointed readers to.

    Chris



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