Quick cleaning your espresso machine daily is just as important as a weekly chemical cleaning. While it is important to do a chemical backflush weekly, it is just as important to clean promptly when you are done making drinks. These quick cleaning tasks only take a few seconds but will add a lot of life to your machine.
After pulling a shot or steaming milk, there will be residual coffee grounds and milk buildup. After time, the buildup will affect the quality of your coffee, and more importantly, can damage your machine. We have seen countless machines come in for maintenance with a lot of grime. This is damaging to your machine but is also affecting your drink quality. We want you to have great, clean tasting coffee every morning, so we’re going to walk you through some quick and simple daily tasks to help you keep your machine clean and in tip-top shape.
Purging the Group Head
After you grind, tamp, and extract your espresso, it is important to immediately flush, or purge the group head. You can do this by simply taking your portafilter out as soon as you can after pulling your shot and wiping it clean. Then proceed to purge the group head for about 1-3 seconds to ensure all coffee grounds and oils are being flushed out of the screen. If you let the espresso grounds sit up in the group head, it will cause buildup. Even if your screen appears to be clean on the outside, the inside could look very different, which can be detrimental.
Purging the Steam Wand
Steam wand purging is also very important as milk buildup can cause damage and affect flavor as well. You want to make sure to purge your steam wand both before and after you steam your milk. You can do this by simply placing a rag over the end of the steam wand and turning it on for 1-2 seconds prior to steaming your milk. This ensures you aren’t getting any residual water from the steam wand into your milk. After you have steamed your milk, be sure to immediately wipe the steam wand clean and then purge again for an additional 1-2 seconds. This is done best with a damp rag.