ieguy Senior Member Joined: 30 Nov 2012 Posts: 3 Location: Riverside, CA Expertise: I live coffee
Espresso: Silvia Grinder: Mazzer Mini Vac Pot: Hario, RIP Drip: Clever Coffee Dripper Roaster: Behmor, modified Poppery I
Posted Fri Nov 30, 2012, 4:00pm Subject: Does my Silvia need a new pump?
I'll start by saying, I've read this forum off and on for years, and always search here when I need an answer and I've always found it. But this is the first time I've posted anything here. I'm having a problem with my Silvia, and I'm not sure what the root of it is. When I go to pull a shot, it starts off normal for the first couple seconds, then slows to a trickle (really more like a drip -- the flow nearly stops). In order to get a normal sized shot, I need to grind much coarser than I used to, and of course it tastes horrible.
A little history, I've noticed this happening before right after de-calcifying, but repeating the process and letting it soak a bit longer before flushing has solved it, and I've since been de-calcifying more regularly. This time, it just started happening randomly, and de-calcifying doesn't help, even with a long soak. I do backflush about every month, and soak the shower screen in Cafiza every time I do. When this started happening, I made extra sure it was clean, and soaked it in Dezcal as well
So, I searched here for ideas, thinking it's probably the pump. I found some suggestions to check to see if it's the OPD valve, so I put the blind filter in and turned it on, but no water came out the return tube. I found a link on here describing how to remove the pump for replacement, and another poster said that removing the pump and soaking the parts in vinegar fixed his pump issues. The description of the problem didn't sound the same, but the procedure sounded easy enough (it was) so I tried that, but no improvement.
So, does it sound like I need to replace the pump altogether? Or does this sound like something else entirely? Help is definitely appreciated.
SStones Senior Member Joined: 24 Nov 2012 Posts: 518 Location: Canada Expertise: Professional
Espresso: Giga 5, ECM Giotto, Rocket... Grinder: Anfim Milano-Best Vac Pot: No :( Drip: Some $30 thing from Walmart Roaster: I buy pre-roasted.
Posted Sat Dec 1, 2012, 8:23pm Subject: Re: Does my Silvia need a new pump?
You say the pump runs and sounds normal with no portafilter in, but provides no flow when it has to overcome the backpressure of properly ground coffee. If the pump is stalling out, actually going quiet before reaching the pressure needed to overcome the coffee(Or the relief valve) then you can try descaling the pump, but will need to replace it soon enough, anyway. If it still sounds almost the same, not getting muffled at all, there is more hope that cleaning/descaling it will help it last for even longer. Replacing the pump is an easy job. Any Ulka EX series from 41 to 65 watts (120V) will suit your brass-boilered machine. A canadian distributor of this pump That's a decent price for the pump, if it's convenient for you. You can probably find it locally. Basically, you'll find that the outlet threads screw right onto your fitting, the inlet is just a push-on hose (Cut a half inch off if it's stretched out and loose).
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