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  • Gaggia Classic leaking steam from group

    Hi guys,

    Just wondering if anybody else had this problem?

    My 12 month old Gaggia Classic has noticably lost steaming power recently. It has been reasonably well maintained, ie cleaned and de-calcified every couple of months.

    You can see the steam leaking from the group-head about 10-20 seconds after switching to steam. As I am steaming the milk, I can hear drops of water hitting the group-head and turning to steam.

    Any ideas what could be causing this?

    Cheers


  • #2
    Re: Gaggia Classic leaking steam from group

    This is caused by your faulty group valve... it is either the piece of little rubber stopper in the valve has harden or aluminum flakes/lime-scale particles inside boiler thats jamming up the valve from closing fully. Easy job to DIY if you want!

    part 58 in the following link:
    http://www.gaggiaparts.com/GaggiaCoffee.html

    a pic of the rubber stopper...

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Gaggia Classic leaking steam from group

      Cheers for that Easy Henry.

      Just one thing though... my Gaggia Classic looks like the one on this page:

      http://www.gaggiaparts.com/GaggiaClassicCoffee.html

      Which doesnt have the stopper valve, but a three-way solenoid valve.

      Do the Classics sold in Oz differ?

      *confused*

      Cheers

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Gaggia Classic leaking steam from group

        I just took apart a classic 2 days ago and I was quite sure I saw it there (although I was paying too much attention Ill take another look tomorrow and post another reply. The classic I took apart was from OZ btw... The pic I posted was from a Carezza thou ;p

        give me 24 hours...

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        • #5
          Re: Gaggia Classic leaking steam from group

          haha... sorry.. what was I thinking, theres not group valve because it uses a 3-way... Faulty info... sorry!

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          • #6
            Re: Gaggia Classic leaking steam from group



            Well, now I am totally confused......



            What could be causing the problem then?

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Gaggia Classic leaking steam from group

              easy_henry, I have a Gaggia Espresso and I am pretty sure it has one of these. I have removed part 56 of the link provided (Shower Holding Plate), but I dont see the group valve. Do I need to remove the Group Body to get at it?

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Gaggia Classic leaking steam from group


                Just wondering will back-flushing help with my steam problem?

                I think I read somewhere that you can do it with a bit of plastic bag or similar instead of a blind basket, is this true and what do people suggest?


                Cheers

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Gaggia Classic leaking steam from group

                  Well, I managed to solve this problem at last.

                  I realised I was descaling the boiler cold, as the instructions were unclear. Apparently they assume that the machine is hot. :-[

                  Anyway, I descaled the machine whilst at operating temp, and it now has a full head of steam!

                  Beauty! ;D

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Gaggia Classic leaking steam from group

                    Originally posted by Spelunx link=1177585743/0#7 date=1178974413
                    Just wondering will back-flushing help with my steam problem?

                    I think I read somewhere that you can do it with a bit of plastic bag or similar instead of a blind basket, is this true and what do people suggest?


                    Cheers
                    Plastic bag??? You fancy putting 8-9bar of pressure (roughly 120psi) onto a plastic bag? Get yourself a blind filter and dont muck around with the plastic bag. The blind filters are not expensive and Coffee Parts stock them.

                    Backflush with water regularly and do a chemical backflush every couple of weeks (depending on machine usage).

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Gaggia Classic leaking steam from group

                      Trumboli, something in the back of my foggy braincells tells me you should not use distilled water in Gaggias, something to do with the re-uptake of minerals during the heating process, thereby eroding the boiler...
                      suggest you check with boffin-brains like JavaB and Mal...

                      cheers,
                      L

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Gaggia Classic leaking steam from group

                        as i said, trumboli, it is a vague recollection... :-/
                        i might be completely wrong here .

                        ill see if i can pull up the thread...

                        L

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Gaggia Classic leaking steam from group

                          you are right, Trumboli, it had to do with the auto-filler sensors and whether they would work with distilled water. :-[

                          L

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Gaggia Classic leaking steam from group

                            Hi guys,

                            Yep, coffee made with distilled water is decidedly flat.... tried doing it this way a long time ago and did not like it at all :P.

                            Re: using distilled water within a vessel comprising dissimilar metals, such as that in the Classic. In principle it can be ok but the longer distilled water is left open to the atmosphere the more acidic it becomes as CO2 is taken up and carbonic acid is formed. pH levels can go to less than 5.0 and that is quite low enough to begin sacrificial corrosion of the Al components of the boiler. This wikipedia article describes what is going on.

                            Much, much better to stick with bottled water or tap water filtered through appropriate filtering systems, at its most basic a Brita Jug works fine but is limited in its long term efficacy to prevent scaling. Hope that helps ,

                            Mal.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Gaggia Classic leaking steam from group

                              The dissolved calcium/magnesium salts actually act as a "buffer" to maintain a high pH (alkaline) and help prevent corrosion (but unfortunately they result in the build up scale).

                              With commercial machines they often use reverse osmosis (almost identical to distillation) but having purified the water, calcium and magnesium salts are added back in (in controlled amounts) before it is used to make coffee. The hardness in the water makes a considerable improvement in the taste of the coffee.... I would never use distilled or deionized water for coffee.

                              And for anyone reading this who has a machine with a water level sensor (typically prosumer and commercial machines) Never - NEVER EVER - use distilled or deionized water.... the level sensor requires the passage of current through the water.... no ions in the water.... no current flow and the machine will never think there is water in the boiler - and continue to try and fill it!!!!

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