Troubleshooting for Traditional Espresso Machines
Problem: A single light is flashing continuously on the keypad.
Possible Cause: Water is unable to pass through the espresso grounds.
Possible Solution: Tamp may be too hard or coffee grounds may be too fine; tamp with 30-50 pounds of pressure and coarsen the grind to speed up the extraction.
Problem: All of the keypad lights are flashing.
Possible Cause: This is most likely a water or fill system-related issue, i.e. a clogged water filter or a clogged fill valve.
Possible Solution: First, check to be sure your water is turned on. Then, check the replacement dates for the cartridge(s) on your filter system. If they are out of date or have no date, they may be clogged (sometimes resulting in a reduced flow rate.) Call your water filtration provider for service, otherwise call your service tech.
Problem: Espresso seems cold and under-extracted.
Possible Cause: The water used for brewing the espresso is not hot enough.
Possible Solution: If you are rinsing portafilters between shots, do so only briefly with water from the hot water jet, not tap water. (Using tap water can cool the portafilter; allowing the hot water jet to run too long may deplete the hot water reserved in the machine.) If the espresso is still cold, there may be a problem with the coffee boiler heating system. Call your service tech.
Problem: Shot extraction times are fluctuating drastically.
Possible Causes:
a. cracked portafilter basket
b. inconsistent dosing and packing habits
c. equipment-related issues
Possible Solutions:
a. Inspect portafilter basket for cracks and replace with a new basket if necessary.
b. Make sure coffee dose and packing pressure are consistent from shot to shot.
c. If the problem persists, the culprit is likely equipment-related, i.e. dull grinder burrs, dirty or faulty flow meters, or a problem with the coffee boiler heating system. Call your service tech.
Problem: Espresso machine won't steam.
Possible Causes:
a. steam wand obstruction
b. machine is not turned on
c. boiler problems
Possible Solutions:
a. Check the steam wand tip for clogs and use a paper clip or similar object to poke out the steam tip holes.
b. Make sure the machine is on. Some machines have a three-way power switch: Off, Fill, On (Heat). Turn the power switch to the On (Heat) position.
c. If the steam boiler gauge reads above 1.5, turn off the machine and call your service tech.
Problem: Shots pour unevenly.
Possible Cause: Portafilter diverter screw out of position, or a buildup of coffee grounds/residue in the spout.
Possible Solution: Adjust, or simply remove, the portafilter spout diverter screw. Rinse the spout under the hot water jet to remove any obstructions.
Problem: Water will not dispense from group head, but pump kicks on.
Possible Causes:
a. The original screw used to secure the screen has been replaced by the wrong sized screw.
b. major equipment problems
Possible Solutions:
a. Make sure the screw holding the screen in place allows water to pass through.
b. If pump squeals when activating the groups, water isn't getting to the pump. Check to be sure your water is turned on and is flowing through the filter system. If you need assistance with this, call your service tech.
Troubleshooting for Franke Espresso machines
Problem: Franke machine is giving "Flow meter" error.
Possible Cause: Dirty flow meter or some kind of build up inside the tubing or the grind may be set too fine.
Possible Solution: Loosen the thumbscrew that secures the piston. Take out the piston and disconnect the rubber tube. Break up a cleaning tablet and add to a steam pitcher half full of hot water. Soak the piston in this solution for 10 minutes. Rinse, then reinstall the piston by reattaching the rubber hose, replace the piston, and tighten (not overtighten) the thumbscrew. Follow by running through a cleaning cycle. If the cause is too fine of a grind, adjust to a coarser grind. Call your service tech if you need help with this.
Problem: Franke Evolution is giving "No beans" error.
Possible Cause: Beans are not being fed into grinding chamber when they should.
Possible Solution: Add beans to hopper if it is empty, make sure metal slides are pulled out.