I have a 3 year old Solis 70 crema which has given me fairly good service during that time. It has two issues which suggest to me that it is approaching the time to retire the machine. I would like to get a few more months out of it if possible, so I am looking for advice on how to mitigate the problems.
The steam thermostat is not allowing the machine to get a good head of steam. The light goes on far too early and cuts off the heat production. I have gotten around this by either pumping fresh water into the boiler which sometimes turns the light off or partially closing the knob once I have started steaming my milk, which also turns off the light and clicks on the heater. Neither is acceptable, and it takes about 5 extra minutes to get enough steam to foam my milk? Ideas?
My portafilter assembly does not have a good seal with the brew head. When I click the pump switch, I first hear the pump moving water through the system. I then makes a loud steaming noise when I can look around and see coffee spraying from the machine side of the portafilter. After a few seconds this resolves and the rest of the shot comes through, along with some dripping around the outside of the portafilter. I have cleaned all the pieces, and the portafilter is locking in place as tight as I can get it. But I can't get it tight enough to prevent the leak.
Again, I am looking for advice for something I can do on my own ( I have taken it apart in the past to do some repairs, so this is not unthinkable.) I just don't thing that it is worth a $200 service bill which I would probably put towards a Silvia.
GarryG Senior Member Joined: 18 Mar 2004 Posts: 28 Location: Massachusetts Expertise: I love coffee
Espresso: La Spaziale Mini II Grinder: La Cimbali Jr.,Breville Drip: Chemex, Krups, Bodum...
Posted Sat Apr 22, 2006, 8:02pm Subject: Re: Solis 70 Portafilter problem???
I've never had problem #1, but when I've had #2, it's been caused by stray coffee grounds in the slots where the portafilter seals -- usually because I tried to take off the portafilter too soon after a shot (bad idea with the SL-70). What has worked for me is slow and patient cleaning of the area where the portafilter locks in, using moistened, folded paper towels. I just keep swabbing until nothing shows up on the swabs.
If that doesn't work you may have seal damage, and that may require professional intervention.
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