A cappuccino maker (a device for frothing milk) is one of the important elements of a coffee machine. The quality of many drinks that the device prepares depends on it – cappuccino, latte, and so on. At the same time, this is a rather vulnerable node that needs to be carefully looked after. About the most common breakdowns of the cappuccinatore and prevention of malfunctions – in this article.
If you are preparing something more complicated than espresso or Americano in a coffee machine, you need a cappuccino maker (steamer, steamer). However, like any part of your device, it needs regular maintenance. Even the highest quality espresso machine requires maintenance. Most of the prevention rules can be found in the user manual (by the way, many people forget about it). Routine cleaning, if done regularly, will minimize problems. However, the elimination of some breakdowns requires more complex manipulations. This includes problems with the cappuccinatore.
There are several types of cappuccino makers for coffee machines.
Manual cappuccino maker . The easiest option. Water vapor forms inside the device, which, due to pressure, flies out through a special tube. The frothing process must be controlled by a person. So it takes a little hands-on experience in this case. To make a good cappuccino, you have to practice frothing milk.
Manual cappuccino makers are the most reliable. They are easy to operate and easy to clean. The quality of their work can only be affected by a long absence of maintenance and decalcification.
Automatic cappuccino maker. As the name suggests, it whips up the lather on its own. Such a cappuccino maker is built into the dispensing group. As a rule, it is connected to the handset to the right or to the left of the group. The main advantage of such a device is that it whips high-quality milk froth by default. However, there are also disadvantages. First of all, the automatic cappuccino maker requires constant maintenance. It may clog due to improper use. Drying out or overheating of the plastic parts can cause the cappuccino maker to lose its tightness.
Foaming agent. This is a special milk container that connects directly to the coffee machine. The principle of operation is simple. Open the lid, pour the milk, close it, put it on a special place in the coffee machine, turn on the desired mode. It should be borne in mind that the glass from time to time can deform and lose its tightness.
Breakdowns in each type of cappuccino maker may differ in detail. But in general, common faults are typical.
Dirty milk frother
This is one of the most common faults. It is usually solved by automatic flushing of the milk system. If, of course, such a function is provided. For the procedure, it is enough to use plain warm water. In some cases, the part must be soaked in special chemicals.
Cappuccino frothers must be washed this way and that. The automatic flush function is necessary here, but it will not completely solve the contamination problem. Therefore, it is necessary to additionally rinse the foaming agent with special chemicals.
For example, this is how the contaminated “insides” of a blowing agent look like.
Cleaning the cappuccino maker at home
Each type of cappuccino maker has its own cleaning procedure. Automatic cappuccino makers and frothers need to be washed especially frequently. After each preparation of coffee, they must be cleaned with water: for this, the machines have an automatic rinsing function. At the end of the day, rinsing with a special solution of detergent for cleaning and disinfection is necessary. In addition, once a month such cappuccino makers need to be disassembled and washed thoroughly. If you neglect these measures, the node will look something like this.
The manual steamer is more unpretentious, but there are some nuances here. After making a cappuccino, do not leave it untouched. This will clog the holes and dry out the rubber seals. Once a month, it is recommended to disinfect the part, remove and soak it in a special solution.
Loss of tightness
Quite a serious breakdown. Most often, it is because of her that milk stops flowing into the cappuccino maker. This malfunction occurs if the cappuccino maker is used for a long time without timely maintenance. Prevention is pretty straightforward. It is enough to monitor the condition of the rubber seals and lubricate them with special food grade silicone.
Another cause of breakdown may be a malfunction in the steam boiler. In this case, it is better to contact the service center for repairs.
Deformation of the body or internals of the cappuccinatore
The plastic parts of the cappuccinatore can be deformed. The reason can be both wear and tear of the spare part. In this case, the part must be changed (in rare cases, the entire assembly must be changed).
Hydraulic system contamination
Limescale and deposits build up in the coffee machine’s hydraulic system over time. As a result, it clogs up (the closest analogy is water pipes). As a result, the water passes through the coffee machine worse, and the output of the drink is less. In the most advanced cases, the entire system can “stand up”. Of course, the cappuccinator is also subject to this scourge. Timely prophylaxis with special cleaning agents will help avoid this problem.
Modern coffee makers have an indicator that signals the need for decalcification. Don’t ignore him.
Pump breakdown is a fairly common malfunction. The main cause is poor water quality (so never fill the machine with water from a well). Deposits and deposits appear on the pipes of the entire hydraulic system and on the pump. The filter, which usually comes with the coffee machine, helps to fight. The main thing is not to forget to change it in time.
This, for example, looks like a tank filter that is dirty due to bad water. The accumulated deposits simply clogged the pump.
If the pump breaks down on the machine, the water supply error indicator or general error indicator will light up. All indicator symbols can be found in the operating instructions for the coffee machine, in the error section. It also describes how you can fix the problem yourself. In some cases, the instruction immediately speaks of the need to contact the service center.
Steam boiler overheating
A fairly rare type of breakdown in modern coffee machines. Most of the models have various fuses and sensors that reliably protect the boiler. However, sometimes it does happen. You should pay attention to several signs. Does the coffee machine suddenly take too long to heat up? Did the sensors start reporting a boiler heating error? In these cases, it is worth worrying. Here it is better not to do anything on your own, but immediately contact a specialized service center.