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How to descale a HX machine properly

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  • simonsk8r
    replied
    Originally posted by homeslice View Post
    I have the same machine. I'll look over my descaling procedure on Monday and get back to you. I've done it a few times without a problem.
    Oh that would be awesome, would really appreciate that. I have no idea if descaling is something I even need to do for this machine still..

    Thanks homeslice! (I think I've ALWAYS wanted to say that phrase... yes finally!)

    Leave a comment:


  • homeslice
    replied
    Originally posted by simonsk8r View Post
    Thought I'd post this here.

    I just did my first descale of my Profitec Pro 500. I didn't take it apart or anything, but just did the method in the manual (dissolving descaler in, running it through group head, back flush, empty out boiler through hot water tap, wash water tank and refill with fresh water, empty boiler and refill 3-5 times to clear out descale solution).

    Am now up to my 13th time of emptying and refilling the boiler, and the water still had a slight smell. It is getting better, but it is strongest smelling out of the steam wand :s. Not sure what to do, should I not worry about it?

    I've been adding water from the hot water tap to a cup and adding some bi-carb to see if it fizzes up, and it still is fizzing up a slight bit (which shows there's still a bit of solution in there...).

    It doesn't say you shouldn't ingest the descale liquid, just to keep it out of your eyes hehe...

    Its ingredients are citric acid 10-30%, tartaric acid 1-10%, anionic surfactants <5%.

    Wondering if I should just keep draining the boiler and refilling with fresh water from this point until the smell goes (have put a lot of water through already now...) or just not worry...
    I have the same machine. I'll look over my descaling procedure on Monday and get back to you. I've done it a few times without a problem.

    Leave a comment:


  • simonsk8r
    replied
    Thought I'd post this here.

    I just did my first descale of my Profitec Pro 500. I didn't take it apart or anything, but just did the method in the manual (dissolving descaler in, running it through group head, back flush, empty out boiler through hot water tap, wash water tank and refill with fresh water, empty boiler and refill 3-5 times to clear out descale solution).

    Am now up to my 13th time of emptying and refilling the boiler, and the water still had a slight smell. It is getting better, but it is strongest smelling out of the steam wand :s. Not sure what to do, should I not worry about it?

    I've been adding water from the hot water tap to a cup and adding some bi-carb to see if it fizzes up, and it still is fizzing up a slight bit (which shows there's still a bit of solution in there...).

    It doesn't say you shouldn't ingest the descale liquid, just to keep it out of your eyes hehe...

    Its ingredients are citric acid 10-30%, tartaric acid 1-10%, anionic surfactants <5%.

    Wondering if I should just keep draining the boiler and refilling with fresh water from this point until the smell goes (have put a lot of water through already now...) or just not worry...

    Leave a comment:


  • steve7
    replied
    I’d hesitate on using vinegar for a couple of reasons - for one the taste, but also as mentioned above, it is aggressive to metal. Check some of the YouTube videos on rust removal where this is tested.

    I use hydrochloric to clean the calcium off the chlorinator in my pool. A 10% solution creates a lot of fizz and gets rid of the deposits very smartly, but I would hate to think what it would do to a nice coffee machine. Last resort stuff for a machine that is almost completely blocked.

    Leave a comment:


  • Dimal
    replied
    I think that some of the commercial products available these days use a healthy proportion of Phosphoric Acid in combination with other chemicals (I don't know which). Used a commercial version of Bombora's Triple Action Descaler many moons ago, which uses this particular acid, to clean up an old Bezzera HX boiler. The end result was very good indeed, and fast - All internal surfaces came up as pristine afterwards...

    Mal.

    Leave a comment:


  • kike10
    replied
    Thanks for your info guys, much appreciated

    Leave a comment:


  • noidle22
    replied
    I use straight citric acid when soaking parts. For E61 group heads and their associated plumbing, I leave it in for 24-36 hours then check.

    I find that after this time pretty much all of the scale is gone. If there were any spots that were particularly thick, it may have not eaten all the way through yet. In this case I just lightly brush away any excess that it easily removed then let soak for another few hours.

    Providing time is not a concern, I find this method easy and effective.

    Leave a comment:


  • Lyrebird
    replied
    Citric is fine but slow. The solubility of calcium citrate is actually quite low so the solution will saturate. Since citric is like $5 per kilo it is not worth your time to stuff around, just make enough citric to do several soaks and change the solution every hour.

    Acetic acid (vinegar) is a bit more effective but also more aggressive on the parts. Amidosulphonic acid (Sulphamic acid) is excellent but hard to buy in domestic quantities. Hydrochloric acid is the most effective of all but it will attack the parts very quickly unless you are very careful.

    Leave a comment:


  • kike10
    replied
    Hi all,

    So i just pulled apart my Giotto cos I found some scale on the mushroom. So far i’ve removed all the pipes and disassembled the group head. There’s a bit of scale ,really not that bad. So was wondering what descaler i could use to soak the parts in a bucket? a citric based one be ok? TIA

    Leave a comment:


  • Lyrebird
    replied
    Originally posted by Dimal View Post
    G'day mate....

    Yes, Citric Acid does work to a point.
    It also leaches tiny amounts of copper from the brass (and copper pipes) in situ, when chlorinated water is used (tap water) which leaves the peculiar pinkish copper appearance afterwards.
    Citric applied to brass will preferentially dissolve the zinc, a process known (logically) as dezincification. Copper dissolves much more slowly so the surface layer becomes copper rich, hence the pink colour.

    Leave a comment:


  • lordvader
    replied
    Hey all.
    I just tried descaling a p500 as per this video (https://youtu.be/yEGfyJkWSqU). The steam wand, however, still smells of descaler (everywhere else the water smells fine).

    Is there anything omitted from that video?

    Leave a comment:


  • trentski
    replied
    What Mal said. Mainly that the citric acid tends to dislodge chunks of dcal that the cause problems by blocking things.

    Maybe the reaction with the copper causes that behaviour I don't know, but that is less of an issue with commercial purpose developed descalers.

    Leave a comment:


  • Dimal
    replied
    G'day mate....

    Yes, Citric Acid does work to a point.
    It also leaches tiny amounts of copper from the brass (and copper pipes) in situ, when chlorinated water is used (tap water) which leaves the peculiar pinkish copper appearance afterwards. Only atomic levels of copper is displaced and not really a concern.
    While not a problem in itself, there are better products around that do a more efficacious job on the scale deposits and avoid the situation of loosening chunks of scale that may end up in other parts of the hydraulic circuit causing future problems and much heartache...

    Mal.

    Leave a comment:


  • steve7
    replied
    Chris

    Why not store bought citric acid? Do you mean the descalers based on citric acid (I think Sunbeam uses that) - or the citric acid powder you can buy in supermarkets around the spices section? I have used the powder to descale kettles and it seems to work well without leaving much taste.

    I have quickly searched the forum without seeing other people saying why it would be bad for an HX machine.

    Leave a comment:


  • TheSpiceIsLife
    replied
    Hi folk, new member here.

    We recently purchased a secondhand Expobar Megacrem 2 group high cup machine. Of course the place that sold it too us told us it was "in great condition" yadda yadda.

    We're getting some white particulate matter coming out of the hot water outlet, so now I'm wondering if I should descale it. Done a little bit of research and I'm figuring I can disconnect the water inline hose from the mains water, make a reservoir out of a bucket and some pipe fittings and flush some descaling agent through it.

    What do I need to be aware of here? Do I need to disconnect a water level probe on the boiler to make sure the descaling agent reaches the top of the boiler? Am I going about this the right way? Should I be doing a more involved dismantling and cleaning if I want to do the job properly?

    I'm confident around 240v electricity, and am a pretty handy fellow. Any help would be greatly appreciated, and if anyone knows where I can get my hands on a service manual for this puppy that would amazing!

    Thanks!

    Leave a comment:

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