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Thread: Help for the e61 group head stuck (failed descaling?)

  1. #1
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    Help for the e61 group head stuck (failed descaling?)

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Hi all,
    Need some help here to sort out the problem.
    As I mentioned in anther thread, I got a 2nd hand Giotto Classic.
    I was slowly clean and do other maintains (clean outside).

    However, this morning when I fire it up, I found the water current from group head is smaller than before.
    Tonight, the current even smaller and I notice the needle of pressure gauge wont back to zero unless I give it a general kick.

    I used the commercial descaling tablet (JURA descaling tablet) when I first got this machine.
    Because there are a lot of chuck come out from boiler, so I order the Cafetto vanish descaler and waiting for it to arrive.

    Between these, I did not turn on the lever to use the group head until yesterday.
    I feel like it is some chuck stuck in the heating element or group head?

    Is any way I can get it out except pulling everything apart?
    Or I just wait for the Cafetto descaler to clean the group head pipe?

    I am pretty worried about this machine.
    Cheers
    Colin

  2. #2
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    Re: Help for the e61 group head stuck (failed descaling?)

    Hmm, doesnt sound good. Poor flow rate after descaling - its very likely hard scale has been dislodged somewhere and found its way into the group head, probably at the mushroom, but it could be anywhere and youll have to find it via a process of elimination.

    Another reason to BE PATIENT and only use the correct products- the Jura descaler you used is not designed for this purpose.

    I suggest you read Chris excellent How to descale a HX machine properly sticky if you havent already.

    The pressure gauge sitting higher than zero is perfectly fine, as the pump will continue to pressurise the heat exchanger loop even when the group valve has closed.


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    Re: Help for the e61 group head stuck (failed descaling?)

    Thanks rick_bond,
    Yes, I have read the thread about how to descale the HX machine.

    I did not realize the JURA is not the proper one until I ask peoples suggestion here.

    since I have used the jura descaling tablet, I was do the flushing following the Chris suggestion and clean the appearance of the machine.

    I may not explain the pressure gauge clearly.
    The pressure gauge part is not normal compare to few days ago.
    I can see the pressure gauge slowly comes down when I turn off the power.
    And when I released the pressure from boiler from tap water, the gauge drop pretty quick.

    Now, the situation is the needle stay there after the power is off and machine is cool down.

    I have to use finger to flick the gauge then the needle fall to zero.

    I assume some chunk stuck in the pressure gauge pipe too?

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    Re: Help for the e61 group head stuck (failed descaling?)

    if youre not confident taking it all apart, just wait until your descaler comes and try that. If no luck, then youll have to either pull it apart yourself or get someone else to. Its not hard to do though.

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    Re: Help for the e61 group head stuck (failed descaling?)

    Thanks Mischa,
    It seems like its the only thing I can do now.
    The cafetto will arrive tomorrow (according to the mail).
    i will update the result.

    btw, I just figure out my machine is Giotto premium not classic, according to ECA.
    Its quite a good news.^^

  6. #6
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    Re: Help for the e61 group head stuck (failed descaling?)

    Removing the "mushroom" (the large, top nut on top of the group) will allow you to examine the amount of scale in the group. This reflects the amount of scale in the boilers. Also, removing just the top small nut on top of the group, under that you will find a small, tubular screen that filters all the water that goes to brewing. Looking down inside, under the top nut there is a very small orifice - a "jet" which is called the gicleur (which means jet in French). That can also get clogged.

    On my website I have instructions on maintaining and overhauling the E-61 group.

    http://www.frcndigital.com/coffee/water2.html
    and simple lubing:
    http://www.frcndigital.com/coffee/water1.html

  7. #7
    KJM
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    Re: Help for the e61 group head stuck (failed descaling?)

    Quote Originally Posted by 6A666560677E6C67090 link=1326110703/2#2 date=1326138829
    Now, the situation is the needle stay there after the power is off and machine is cool down.

    I have to use finger to flick the gauge then the needle fall to zero.

    I assume some chunk stuck in the pressure gauge pipe too?
    Could be, but could also be elsewhere in the plumbing...

    Randy Gs most excellent instructions on taking the top of the mushroom apart are pretty straight forward. Id be doing exactly what he suggested and looking at the filter screen and the jet. You dont actually need to go further - if there is crud in either then further disassembly is probably needed to hook all the crud out. It might also be the case that cleaning those 2 things will fix the problems.

    Hope it helps.
    /Kevin

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    Re: Help for the e61 group head stuck (failed descaling?)

    Apology up front to Colin for this frank posting.

    Quote: "....I used the commercial descaling tablet (JURA descaling tablet) when I first got this machine...."

    This is one of the problems of people getting into stuff that they usually shouldnt....the trouble with reading too much stuff in these forums or too much into the stuff in these forums.

    Our advice to people that purchase used heat exchanger (HX) coffee machines, is that if they are working as they should, dont fix them (the old "if it aint broke..."). This is particularly pertinent in the never ending discussion on descaling which can cause more rubbish to dislodge and deposit around the machine causing it to fail where if left alone, there would not have been any real problem.

    Check and descale "externally" if you wish (eg the group head mushroom, group jet and scintered filter as mentioned above), but not internally by way of solutions in the water tank.

    It is very possible this machine will, as a result of running solutions through, require a total disassembly, professional descaling and reassembly at a cost of many dollars for time spent.

    Thank you, to the "lets descale everything in site or that moves" lobby....not* ::)

    Attilio
    very first Cs site sponsor.

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    Re: Help for the e61 group head stuck (failed descaling?)

    Thanks for all, especially "Fresh_coffess" straight and honest.

    Yes, I believe I am too cocky and think the maintain job is not difficult until I get myself into trouble.

    Update the story, I received the Cafetto vanish descaler this morning.
    I follow all the information/suggestion on this forum how to use the descaler properly.

    On my third runs to re-fill the water tank, I notice the boiler stop input the water (pump did not move).
    And there is no pressure, no steam, no water from hot water wand.

    When I lift the lever, the pump did move.

    So according to the previous information around this forum, my control borad (rely) is died, right?

    Is there any other diagnostic way to narrow down the faulty?

    Or I may just bring it to the local Giotto service instead.

    Cheers

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    Re: Help for the e61 group head stuck (failed descaling?)

    refer to another thread.
    http://coffeesnobs.com.au/YaBB.pl?num=1315883733/0#9

    Luckily I kind of pass this not heating problem by push the red thingy of pressurestat back.
    Thanks again for peoples advice.


  11. #11
    KJM
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    Re: Help for the e61 group head stuck (failed descaling?)

    Quote Originally Posted by 666A696C6B72606B050 link=1326110703/9#9 date=1326496125
    Luckily I kind of pass this not heating problem by push the red thingy of pressurestat back.
    Thanks again for peoples advice.
    Errr - Colin - I think that is an over temperature cut-out. Id guess this probably happened when you did the de-scale thing. To me, it says you might have emptied the boiler rather too much and exposed the heating element. This leads to element failure which is expensive...

    Id strongly suggest you have a look at the hydraulic diagrams for the machine and just see what happens when you do whatever it was you did when you descaled. Id suggest you try to ensure you dont do whatever it was again..

    Just my $0.02!
    /Kevin

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    Re: Help for the e61 group head stuck (failed descaling?)

    Thanks KJM.
    Yes, some people advice me its not a pressurestat, its a thermostat.

    I have reset it and descaling with proper descaler (Cafetto), so far nothing happen again.

    However, just another accident jump out here.

    When I turn on/off of the hot water tap (to release the water from boiler). The knob comes off.

    After I look carefully, the middle thingy of valve broken.
    I have check the parts list, it seems not sell separately.
    I will send a email to ECA and coffeeparts to see if they have this small part in stock.

    Everyday I have some thing happen to my Giotto...








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    Re: Help for the e61 group head stuck (failed descaling?)

    Quote Originally Posted by 575B585D5A43515A340 link=1326110703/11#11 date=1326594487
    Everyday I have some thing happen to my Giotto...
    Hang in there, not time to start whinging and moaning yet! You can start doing that when it starts costing you lots of money :)

  14. #14
    KJM
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    Re: Help for the e61 group head stuck (failed descaling?)

    Quote Originally Posted by 212D2E2B2C35272C420 link=1326110703/11#11 date=1326594487
    After I look carefully, the middle thingy of valve broken.
    I have check the parts list, it seems not sell separately.
    I will send a email to ECA and coffeeparts to see if they have this small part in stock.
    If they dont you can always look up your local machine shops. It is made of brass, so itll be un-cheap but you should be able to get another one turned up or that one brazed back together.

    Might be cheaper...

    /Kevin

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    Re: Help for the e61 group head stuck (failed descaling?)

    Thanks Kevin and Mischa (you are right, it has not cost me a lot of money yet ^^).

    Email back from ECM, they did not sell the small part only. They sell the whole valve.
    After brought the broken one to the workshop in our uni, I ask the mechanic if he can just cut a groove below the old one.
    Since I feel I still have space in the knob.

    End up he did this for me, and I return him a cappuccino.
    Now both of us are happy.

    However, another quick question.
    After I put everything back, I can smell the water from grouphead still have some old-tap-rusted smell.
    I wonder if its because I descaled it.
    I will try to flush few times more to see what will happen.

    Cheers
    Colin

  16. #16
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    Re: Help for the e61 group head stuck (failed descaling?)

    Good solution. Could the smell youre smelling be the descaling fluid still contaminating the water?


  17. #17
    KJM
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    Re: Help for the e61 group head stuck (failed descaling?)

    Quote Originally Posted by 7F737075726B79721C0 link=1326110703/14#14 date=1326805006
    After I put everything back, I can smell the water from grouphead still have some old-tap-rusted smell.
    I wonder if its because I descaled it.
    Most likely it is the scale - everytime Ive done something like descale the kettle in the tea room it has a definite smell for a while. It goes away, which I guess means the fine scale which is still attached but somewhat loose eventually all disappears.

    So flushing a lot should do the trick. Since you had so much bother with blockages, seems to me that there was probably a lot of scale in there in the first place. I assume you descaled both the HX loop and the boiler? You need to flush both. The HX loop doesnt hold much volume so that shouldnt be too hard to flush..

    /Kevin

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    Re: Help for the e61 group head stuck (failed descaling?)

    Thanks Mischa and Kevin.
    Probably you both are right.
    Because after read your post, I went back to do the flushing (another 20ish times).

    Then the smell is gone (horay!!), now I just need to sharp my brewing skill.

    Colin



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