How Clean Is Your Machine?

The vast majority of callouts we receive to fix machines are totally avoidable. These repairs are often disruptive and can be an expense that you can really do without.

A machine that hasn’t been properly cleaned and maintained will need repairing sooner than one that has. Not only that, but a dirty machine will never give you the quality of coffee that your customers deserve.

Imagine how an espresso coming out of here must taste…

We’re here to give you a few pointers on how to keep on top of your cleaning and show you what to avoid. Firstly, here’s why an unclean machine could cause you problems:

  • The oils and acidity in coffee are not good friends with your shower screens. A buildup of spent grounds up inside your coffee machine will age your rubber seals and lead to foul-tasting coffee. Imagine running water through the same grounds over and over for hours, and then drinking the results. To some extent, this is what your customers could be tasting in their cup.
  • Your water has a huge impact on the health of your machine. Like in a kettle, the buildup of limescale will impact the effectiveness of the machine’s boiler, and will also lead to coffee that doesn’t taste as good as it should. Adequate water filtration is a must for a well-functioning machine that can produce delicious drinks.

Things to do during service:

  • Purge and wipe your steam wands after each use. A buildup of dried milk should never end up in contact with a customer’s drink, and you don’t want it lining the inside of your steam wands. 
  • Flush your group heads after pulling each shot. You want to avoid a buildup of oils and spent grounds up inside your shower screen, for cleanliness and taste’s sake. Do a taste test having flushed vs not flushing – you’ll notice the difference!
  • If you have a free moment, give your group heads a flush with clean water (no detergent). Aim to do this hourly, if you can.

Things to do every day:

  • Take apart your portafilters, soak in Puly Caff (or similar) for 20 minutes. Scrub them clean, rinse thoroughly, and reassemble.
  • Backflush your group heads with a Puly Caff (or similar) solution, then repeat with clean water. Scrub any grounds/oils away from your shower screen.
  • Soak your steam wands in Puly Milk (or similar) to clean away any milk residue. Unscrew the steam wand tips and dislodge any milk from the steam wand holes.
  • Before serving any coffees after cleaning, be sure to pull a ‘waste shot’ through each group head (to remove any detergent residue).

Once a week, remove the shower screen from each group head along with the rubber seal and clean thoroughly.

Once a month, check your water filtration system and see if your filter cartridges need replacing. 


Ensure that your machine is serviced annually, and any necessary boiler inspections have been done. If you’re not sure if/when these are due, or for any other support (including stocking up on cleaning equipment) contact us at info@rountoncoffee.co.uk.

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