ptocko Senior Member Joined: 30 Nov 2010 Posts: 4 Location: Prior Lake, MN Expertise: Just starting
Espresso: Gaggia Classic Grinder: Gaggia MDF
Posted Sat Aug 25, 2012, 9:54am Subject: Gaggia Classic HELP Needed!!!
Hope someone can point me in the right direction in diagnosing a problem I am having with my Gaggia Classic (with PED). Machine was working fine last Tuesday when I left for business travel - problem occured this morning (Saturday) when I went to run it for the first time since being back. Machine is regularily cleaned and descaled (about 1 month ago - 10-12 espressos ago due to business travel). Machine showed it was heating up as normal (according to the PED display got to 224 in about 30 or so seconds) but about 1/2 hour later when I went to make my shot it showed a temperature of 101. The PED did seem to be "sending" the signal to activate the boiler but the temperature was not rising. I flipped the switch to steam and the temperature shot up and maintained 320 - 330 degrees and was able to steam milk with no problem. Not sure if there is a different heating element for steam (versus espresso) but as I said - steam seemed to work fine. Am pretty technical so I don't mind working on the machine but if anyone can help with the diagnosis that would be awesome. Thanks for the help!!
Posted Sat Aug 25, 2012, 10:30am Subject: Re: Gaggia Classic HELP Needed!!!
A few assumptions based on your description. Your PID and sensor seem to be functioning on one side. I am assuming that you gave a specific steam temperature range based on PID readout. That would mean that the sensor or thermocouple are working. I would look in the machine for a loose wire to the SSR or SSR to power out loop, or the SSR itself.
Some SSRs have an LED light to show when they have an on cycle.
The Gaggia boiler has two elements, one on each side and they work together to heat or steam heat.
Sounds like you are not set up to use PID as steam control, just senses temperature when running the steam switch, but that means the standard Gaggia wiring including elements are probably fine.
Posted Sat Aug 25, 2012, 2:20pm Subject: Re: Gaggia Classic HELP Needed!!!
First, just make sure everything is still connected. Sometimes connectons loosen with heat and cool cycles. I do not know what brand you are using for PID and SSR, or thermocouple type, but the sensing side seems to work. Look for a loose or disconnected wire, most likely in the machine, but even at the back of the PID, or at the SSR. My PID has screw in connectors at the back. They became loose as the wires crushed to fit and I tightened and fine since. I never lost function, just found it on recheck.
I am assuming that the PID operates on AC 110v, though DC is possible. It probably switches on with the machine. When the machine is cold, out of PID damping range, the PID should put out an almost constant DC voltage to the SSR. There are also AC SSRs, but not as likely here. Usually less than 32v DC and often about 12v. You could measure that voltage at the back of the PID if you know terminals, and at the SSR input side, small wire side.
If that checks, then you should be getting 110v AC on the output side, large wire side. There may be an LED showing when SSR is working, blinking on and off depending on the temperature.
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