No announcement yet.

Faema E98 Compact A1 - some newbie questions

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Faema E98 Compact A1 - some newbie questions

    Hello CSers

    I just picked up a Faema E98 Compact A1, and am wondering where I could find some info on how to clean it, maintain it, service manual etc.  I tried searching but didnt come up with any results.

    The machine uses a built in tank, but has a drain hose.  Is it possible to sort out a drip tray for this model?

    The machine has not been used for a few months, and I was told the previous owner used it sparingly. 

    I would like to give it a good clean (internally). Externally it looks very good. 

    I am unfamiliar with the operation of these sorts of machines, and would like to get some info to understand their workings etc.  I currently have a Nemox Cafe Del Opera.

    Cheers and thanks

  • #2
    Re: Faema E98 Compact A1 - some newbie questions

    there is no such thing as a service manual. They arent overly complicated machines mechanically. How far you go with the servicing depends on your ability. If youre very picky you could take it apart for a descale and rebuild, however if i were you i would just clean or replace the shower screen, replace the group seal and buy a bag full of new resin filters (the little water filter that floats in the water tank) to replace every 5kgs of coffee or so.

    I use a tupperware container under my drip tray hose outlet to catch drain water. Not ideal, but it works and is easy to empty. Otherwise since its a serious machine that you may never get rid of, if you own your place you could drill a hole in your bench and drain into a bucket underneath.

    Maintenance is mostly just backflushing every week or two with powder, and replacing the group seal every few months. every few years you might like to have it stripped and cleaned and rebuilt to keep it in perfect condition.

    Good luck!


    • #3
      Re: Faema E98 Compact A1 - some newbie questions

      Hi Artman

      your in luck i have a couple of good manuals, not really service manuals but give good info and parts diagrams etc.

      if you send me a PM with a email address i will send them to you. they are PDF

      is yours the volumetric button model ?

      i bought one of these and gave it to my sister, its a solid machine. runs a bit hot so needs a good cooling flush but makes good coffee.

      hers has the tank but a past owner has set it up as plumbed only. they are supposed to be able to do both and have a way to switch it to "tank only" or "plumb to tank" the plumb to tank system uses a solenoid to open a line that still fills the tank and the machine actually continues to use the tank. They did this to avoid the need to adjust the pump when switching between options.  thats assuming you have the rotary pump plumb / tank options.....

      an option for the drain is just run a drain hose across the kitchen bench to the sink. mine runs under the washing up drying rack i should drill a hole but i have stone bench tops and are reluctant.... my sister drains hers the same way


      • #4
        Re: Faema E98 Compact A1 - some newbie questions

        Thanks for the info guys. It does look like a serious bit of gear, certainly makes the Nemox Del Opera look like a dinky toy!!

        Our benches are stone, so I dont want to drill any holes in it. Also, the sink is on the other side of the kitchen. I will have to suss out some sort of tray under it.

        Mine is this model, which I believe is the volumetric one? It was made in 2000. Its missing the plastic around the left most milk frothing "wand", otherwise looks to be quite original.

        I forgot to mention, I did get the original Owners manual with it, but its a bit vague. If anyone wants a scan, let me know.

        It might be a rotary pump as its fairly quiet, I will have to pull the covers off and have a look.

        I enjoy a tinkering so dont mind doing so to get this machine up to speed.

        Can the "filter" in the tank be recharged with salt or would it need replacement?

        Thanks maheel, I will PM you my email.

        When I tried the machine at place of purchase, it looked like the drain hose was blocked. The little "box" that the drip tray feeds into and the drain hose attaches to, was overflowing. Wiggling the hose a bit drained it quickly. I will set it up and have another play to make sure its not leaking anywhere else.

        Is there any sort of "tests" I should do to make sure its all working OK?

        Thanks for the help and info guys.



        • #5
          Re: Faema E98 Compact A1 - some newbie questions

          grab a bit of hose and run it to a bucket while testing
          there is a large bit of electronics under the drip tray you dont want any water going in there......

          mine suffers from a sticky anti vac and sometimes needs the false pressure let out via the steam wand. pretty common and easy fix. i need the teflon coated one...

          the missing plastic is from a "auto milk steamer" junk anyway  

          if you saw it running and coming up to pressure it should be ok, i would check the normal things for safety like making sure all wires look safe and sound.
          check the group head pump pressure id you can or get gregs gauge or if BNE i can lend you one.
          check the boiler pressure gauge, mine rises quite slowly but adjustments should be made on taste and temps as gauges are guides...
          check the volumes on the buttons, but like many you might just use the middle manual on off one 

          to get the side off you use an allen key in the hole on the top and the sides in the middle section sort of pop / slide up and out leaving that top bit screwed in

          might need a cooling flush if left sitting if anything like my sisters, plumbing them in is great !!

          not sure on the filter, i woudl get a proper one like Bombora etc

          i will send the manuals ASAP


          • #6
            Re: Faema E98 Compact A1 - some newbie questions

            Thanks for the manuals maheel.

            I took the side and top covers off the machine, it looks very clean inside, everything looks intact and unmolested etc. Mine is the model with the rotary pump.

            I didnt see it brew as they didnt have any coffee. But the steam was strong, the boiler pressure was just before the green on the guage, and it was backflushing ok with a blinded basket.

            I did notice running the group water after it has been sitting for a bit the water is hot and steamy but soon settles with the flushing.

            I will take out the shower screen, collar, seal and clean everything up and backflush with cleaner and see how it goes.

            Out of curiosity, how does this machine compare/differ to something like the La Scala Butterfly or Rocket Giotto Premium Plus? (apart from the electronic controls).



            • #7
              Re: Faema E98 Compact A1 - some newbie questions

              yeah mine needs a solid flush after sitting, the GHead / boiler design might be the big issue there ?

              as for what is better ? thats so subjective


              • #8
                Re: Faema E98 Compact A1 - some newbie questions

                the group design and aesthetics are the main differences... everything else is more or less the same.


                • #9
                  Re: Faema E98 Compact A1 - some newbie questions

                  Ok, did some more tinkering on this beast.  Cleaned the shower screen, group head etc, they were quite filthy. 

                  I found this "gauze" lodged in the entry to the drain hose, which was partially blocking the hose and causing it to overflow.

                  Could not work out what it was, but eventually found it on the coffeeparts website, its inside the group jet filter:

                  Which is located here (green):

                  When backflushing, the gush of water from the exit pipe (red in pic above) partially misses the drip tray, even though its pointing in the right direction, causing some water to go inside the machine.  I am thinking of extending this to make it lower so it doesnt splash.

                  The anti vac valve was leaking slightly, I took it off and found that the o-ring had gone hard and perished.  Replaced the o-ring for a few cents from a bearing supply shop and no more leaks.  Maheel, maybe yours just needs a new o-oring, there is not much else to go wrong with it?  Its simple to change.

                  I found this hose disconnected up the top of the machine:  It looks like its connects to the top drip/warming tray.  Looks like a washer underneath and secured by a nut on top (both missing) will fix this. 

                  When the boiler fills up from the tank, some water comes through into the drain through the hose that the above mentioned hose tees into.  Is this normal?  It will be a pain once I setup the drip tray as it will fill unnecessarily quickly.

                  I noticed there is a "valve" that directs water from the pump to the boiler and this drain hose (and also the group via the volumetric measuring device).  The valve is shown below:

                  What is the thing on the end (red arrow)?  Perhaps I need to adjust something, or the valve is gunked up, causing the water flowing into the drain when the boiler fills?

                  The pressure gauge was playing up, so I removed the pipe to the gauge and it was blocked, cleared the blockage but the gauge is still playing up, I will test it with a known accuracy gauge and see what it does.

                  The boiler looks to have a layer of scale on its inside wall, I will get some descaling powder and descale it a few times.  I am thinking of filling it via the anti vac valve hole, letting it sit, then draining though the boiler drain "valve".

                  I am going to get the descaling stuff and other parts like seals etc from coffeeparts, want to suss out what I need and do one order.

                  Can the auto frother (whatever its called, the left most attachment) be disconnected so it cant inadvertently be turned on?  I am thinking of unplugging the solenoid.

                  One last question, are the PFs between this machine and E61 interchangeable?

                  Thanks and cheers


                  • #10
                    Re: Faema E98 Compact A1 - some newbie questions

                    your right about the cup warming tray but on mine the hose clamp was gone so the tube would pull off and leave the brass nipple on the tray.

                    i reckon it needs a bit of extra tube so you can actually lift off the tray and reach in to remove it. i find it a bit annoying how it is joined to the tray and hard to get on or off.

                    if you can get a bit of silicone hose for that backwash tube it is way better than PVC type hose, it handles the heat and does not go brittle etc. 

                    some one disconnected the wire to the solenoid on our auto milk thing, you can press the button but nothing happens. i just left it this way

                    someone told me that brass screw in the red arrow is for changing to "plumb in" but its not . i "think" it some sort of over pressure relief valve.

                    When plumbed in the machine is supposed to fill the tank from the line in then continue to draw from the tank. This stops the need to adjust pump pressure if you swap between plumb and tank. ours has been reconfigured to only use plumb in but all the tank bits are still there (some hose was cut?) the tank does not fill and the water sensor has been bypassed (in the bit of plastic where the wires go) for it to think the tank is full.

                    maybe yours is set to low allowing water to exit under boiler pressure?
                    not 100% sure on that one but.... there are so many pipes going all over the place on this model in such a small space, the designer excelled in making it a little extra confusing    lol

                    pedro @ coffeeparts can supply group handles for this, i had to buy one as mine came without....
                    get a new GH seal as well i like the way the GH pulls apart allowing a serious clean rather easily

                    our pressure gauge seems to take a long time to come to pressure, the machine is ready and the gauge slowly rises lagging actual pressure, it seems to be below the water line of the boiler. might be some of the reason, not really reading "steam" pressure ?

                    yours looks in good condition based on internal pics

                    be safe with that 240V  


                    • #11
                      Re: Faema E98 Compact A1 - some newbie questions

                      Thats a good idea re the top tray drain, maybe I will extend the hose and put a joiner in a convenient location, or slide the tube off the brass nipple, otherwise it would be a PITA to take the tray off/on. 

                      Good idea re the silicone hose to extend the backflush outlet, if I cant get one in that big a size, might use a bit of car heater hose or similar, should last better than PVC.

                      I know what you mean re pipes going everywhere!!  I started to get my head around the circuits, but might trace things out with the schematic diagrams etc to understand it fully.  One of the docs you emailed shows how to change from tank to plumb in, including bypassing the water level probes as you say.

                      Perhaps it is a over pressure thing and the pump pressure is too high when its filling the tank and some gets bypassed into the waste?  So on your machine no water gows down the waste when the boiler fills?

                      Re the GH pulling apart, what do you mean?  I pulled the plastic shroud off, the chrome collar, GH seal, the shower screen and distribution disc.  Then to clean the brass GH I just scrubbed and scrubbed with coffee cleaner to get it cleaned.  Is there more dismantling I can do or is that it?  The only other thing I could see possible was unbolting the entire GH off the boiler, or am I missing something?

                      Yep, coffeeparts have the GH seals etc (and excellent diagrams), I will order the bits today from them.  Re their diagrams though, some bits are under Cimbali, some under Feama, but there are some bits of the machine that are missing in any of their diagrams.

                      I always play it safe with the power, unplug etc.  Looks like a mouse has lived in the machine at some stage, a bit of poo around on closer inspection and the insulation on the braided hose from the pump has been nibbled, as has some of the insulation between the boiler and tank.  All the wires etc look untouched luckily.  I can always get an electrician friend to look over the machine too to make sure all is OK.

                      I cant wait to get this running!!  Still trying to figure out what to do to sort out something for the drip tray.

                      Also thinking of making one of the PF naked by cutting out the bottom, the chrome inside the base of one of them looks a bit worn/eroded so might as well make use of it.

                      Thanks for all your help guys!!


                      • #12
                        Re: Faema E98 Compact A1 - some newbie questions

                        the group head has 3 bolts in it and if you take them out the "outer ring" can be removed. It might be stuck on with coffee gunk but.

                        in the coffeeparts diagrams under the cimbali area you can see the bolts "new inox" they are the allen key replacements for the originals.

                        i had to check the diagram as i suddenly thought i was talking BS ... ;D

                        RE wiring for plumb in, shows how much i studied the manual i sent you... lol will have to have another read

                        without running a hose to a waste container its going to be a small tray unless you jack it up off the bench

                        i gave this one to my sister as a gift she loves it


                        • #13
                          Re: Faema E98 Compact A1 - some newbie questions

                          Ah ok, thats what I meant by the chrome collar (retained by 3 hex nuts on mine).  Looks like I removed everything possible for the clean.  [smiley=thumbsup.gif]

                          Yeah, I will have to maybe raise the machine to sort out the drip tray to make it usable.  Yet to plunk it on the kitchen bench to see how it will fit, its huge!!!

                          Are you able to confirm with your sister if any water goes to the drain while the boiler is refilling?  This seems to be the only unkown/malfunction on the machine.

                          Out of curiosity, how much are these machines worth roughly?



                          • #14
                            Re: Faema E98 Compact A1 - some newbie questions

                            Originally posted by 78747D707079150 link=1303139144/4#4 date=1303174060
                            mine suffers from a sticky anti vac and sometimes needs the false pressure let out via the steam wand. pretty common and easy fix. i need the teflon coated one...
                            Mine had a sticky anti-vac valve too. I just replaced the o-ring, and now it works perfectly again. Easy to change and only a few cents for the o-ring.


                            • #15
                              Re: Faema E98 Compact A1 - some newbie questions

                              will ask and i have to go do the anti vac on it so will test while there, maybe Bill can check also did not notice the issue when i was cleaning / sorting it

                              they are not that big lol my brug is bigger.....
                              and worth every cm^2 they take up
                              add a big grinder and...... ;D

                              like every thing 2nd hand only worth what people pay and all depends on condition
                              bargain at 500?
                              still cheap at 1000?
                              ok at 1500?
                              bit steep at 2000?