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new Saeco Xsmall Plus leak?
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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > new Saeco Xsmall...  
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brddd
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Joined: 23 May 2012
Posts: 6
Location: Toronto
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Wed May 23, 2012, 11:47am
Subject: new Saeco Xsmall Plus leak?
 

Greetings, last night I purchased my first espresso machine after years of using french presses, mocha pots, and recently the aeropress.   I got the Saeco Xsmall Plus as a compromise due to it being a small form factor with me living in a tiny condo with precious kitchen counterspace.

After one night and one morning of fiddling with it, I am able to produce some decent 30ml shots using Lavazza Oro beans (am trying them until I get the blue again).

Des[ite this, I am nervous that it is leaking, and am not sure if it is normal behaviour.   After a few shots, the drip tray on the right side contains quite a bit of light brown water.   No water made it into the drip tray through the spouts, and it appears to be coming from the brew unit above.  

I'll do more tests tonight to measure precisely how much water is leaking from 1 shot.  But it seems to be several shots worth of water after 3 or 4 shots.

I'm worried that if this is a leak it could affect the pressure, or leak more and more until it completely malfunctions.    But it could also be normal behaviour of water run off from the completion of the shot.   I'll have to look in the manual in more detail but initially I did not see mention of this.   I would expect that this should not happen.

Can anyone provide any comments on this?  Thanks!
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rabbit
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Joined: 3 Sep 2008
Posts: 234
Location: maine
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: v.3  miss sylvia
Grinder: baratza  vario, encore
Vac Pot: presspot
Roaster: fresh roast sr300
Posted Wed May 23, 2012, 1:55pm
Subject: Re: new Saeco Xsmall Plus leak?
 

does your machine have a 3way silanoid?
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brddd
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Joined: 23 May 2012
Posts: 6
Location: Toronto
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Wed May 23, 2012, 5:19pm
Subject: Re: new Saeco Xsmall Plus leak?
 

rabbit Said:

does your machine have a 3way silanoid?

Posted May 23, 2012 link

Good question.   After reading about 3-way valves, it explains the behavior but given it is a $599 machine I would guess that it doesn't.   There is no reference to one in the manual.

When I remove the "brew group" there is specifically a drain going into the drip tray.  The brew group sits above this and there is a space between it and the drain.  

After some tests water goes into the drip tray during a rinse/self clean (yes I'm catching the water from the spout) and during a shot.  

A rinse/self clean puts about 3/4 ounce of water in the drip tray, and a 1 ounce shot puts about 1/2 ounce of water in the drip tray.   The water is a clear light brown colour.

Aside from saying to empty your drip tray daily, the manual makes no mention of this behaviour.
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rabbit
Senior Member


Joined: 3 Sep 2008
Posts: 234
Location: maine
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: v.3  miss sylvia
Grinder: baratza  vario, encore
Vac Pot: presspot
Roaster: fresh roast sr300
Posted Wed May 23, 2012, 5:59pm
Subject: Re: new Saeco Xsmall Plus leak?
 

dose the manual say anything about backflushing?
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brddd
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Joined: 23 May 2012
Posts: 6
Location: Toronto
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Wed May 23, 2012, 6:10pm
Subject: Re: new Saeco Xsmall Plus leak?
 

rabbit Said:

dose the manual say anything about backflushing?

Posted May 23, 2012 link

No.   Nothing at all.  I'll call the store I bought it from and Saeco tomorrow.  <sigh>
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brddd
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Joined: 23 May 2012
Posts: 6
Location: Toronto
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Thu May 24, 2012, 7:56am
Subject: Re: new Saeco Xsmall Plus leak?
 

Saeco said this could happen if my brew group is plugged with grinds, but on a new machine (2 days old) this should not happen and is likely a defective brew group.  :(  

It is definitely not normal behavior is what they confirmed.
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rabbit
Senior Member


Joined: 3 Sep 2008
Posts: 234
Location: maine
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: v.3  miss sylvia
Grinder: baratza  vario, encore
Vac Pot: presspot
Roaster: fresh roast sr300
Posted Thu May 24, 2012, 2:46pm
Subject: Re: new Saeco Xsmall Plus leak?
 

is it under warranty???
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brddd
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Joined: 23 May 2012
Posts: 6
Location: Toronto
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Thu May 24, 2012, 5:44pm
Subject: Re: new Saeco Xsmall Plus leak?
 

rabbit Said:

is it under warranty???

Posted May 24, 2012 link

Yes, it's  3 days old. :)

I examined it thoroughly and there are no blockages.   The last test reassures me a little bit.   I opened the door and held down the door sensor to watch it in action.   It seems like it goes into the drain after the shot finishes as it flips back.   I'll watch it again in the morning, but that means it should not affect the shot as it is just the extra water being flushed.  

Saeco thought this was not normal so it is worth it for them to look at it just in case.
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coffeesykes
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coffeesykes
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Posted Fri May 25, 2012, 3:45am
Subject: Re: new Saeco Xsmall Plus leak?
 

I used to sell Saeco machines, I had an Xsmall and other models on the floor as demo's, all these machine work the same, the brew group drips when ejecting the used puck of coffee and its pretty normal for some dripping to occur, depends on the the grinder setting to some degree whether puck will be dry or moist.

If you have to dump the drip tray because its full on each espresso brewed then you might have a leak elsewhere.

Does the coffee taste strong enough?

PS if its brand new then bring it to Saeco to be checked out. Feel free to contact me, this model has few a quirks but is reliable
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brddd
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Joined: 23 May 2012
Posts: 6
Location: Toronto
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Fri May 25, 2012, 6:47am
Subject: Re: new Saeco Xsmall Plus leak?
 

coffeesykes Said:

I used to sell Saeco machines, I had an Xsmall and other models on the floor as demo's, all these machine work the same, the brew group drips when ejecting the used puck of coffee and its pretty normal for some dripping to occur, depends on the the grinder setting to some degree whether puck will be dry or moist.

If you have to dump the drip tray because its full on each espresso brewed then you might have a leak elsewhere.

Does the coffee taste strong enough?

PS if its brand new then bring it to Saeco to be checked out. Feel free to contact me, this model has few a quirks but is reliable

Posted May 25, 2012 link

Thanks for the comments.   I do have it set to the finest grind settings, and it is calibrated for a 1 ounce shot.  This takes about 8 seconds so I don't think it is choking, in fact this seems too short.

The coffee does taste strong enough although it could be a bit thicker but that could be the beans.  (Lavazza Oro)   The crema is fantastic.   I'm much more awake in the morning compared to the aeropress.  :)

I spoke to Saeco support twice and they agree the volume of water in the drip tray I'm seeing is not normal unless it was clogged which it is not.   0.5oz of water per 1oz shot is going into the drip tray.  After 4 shots, the right side of the trip dray is mostly full.

They put me in touch with a service center in my area, and they also agree that is too much water.  A little bit after each shot when it dumps the puck is normal, but not that much.

I'll be taking it into their shop tomorrow to get a technician to look at it which is going to take about a week.  :(

At least I've confirmed I'm not completely crazy.  :)
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