elbardo Senior Member Joined: 25 Nov 2010 Posts: 4 Location: N.America Expertise: Just starting
Posted Wed Oct 3, 2012, 10:30pm Subject: La Cimbali m21 Junior problems, any help appreciated!
First post, looking for some technical help on my Cimbali M21 Junior (2004 version with the touch pad between the steam and hot water knobs). Bought it used in April, has a great documented history including full service in February. Haven't had any issues until the other day.
Two days ago, went to make my morning coffee. The boiler pressure, which is usually around 0.9-1.0 bar, was sitting at about 1.7 (just in to the red on the gauge). Didn't think a lot about it at the time, went to bleed off the steam and pull a shot, but there was no steam. And no steam on the steam arm, and not really anything happening on the hot water tap either. I found that the anti suction valve (the valve on the top of the boiler, closest to the left side) had water in it and had leaked a little.
At this point, I looked around a little, and saw a suggestion that the boiler might be overfilled and unable to make steam. I drew some more water out through the grouphead, and let things heat up. I was able to get some steam on the steam arm and to get a mediocre shot.
The next day, I found the same thing in the morning. 1.7 bar, no steam. Followed the same procedure. The anti suction valve started to leak steam and continued to do so really until I turned the power off again.
I'm hoping someone here has had a similar situation with their cimbali and could provide a little advice. I'm not sure if it's simply a matter of a new anti suction valve, is the auto fill system to blame, or something else? Before I pull the auto fill probe, do I need to drain the boiler (machine is off of course, and cool).
rezz Senior Member Joined: 17 Aug 2011 Posts: 85 Location: Dallas Expertise: I live coffee
Espresso: La Cimbali Junior, Expobar... Grinder: Mazzer Major, Kitchenaid... Vac Pot: Why? Drip: Really? Roaster: Hot Top, Gene Cafe
Posted Fri Oct 5, 2012, 12:13pm Subject: Re: La Cimbali m21 Junior problems, any help appreciated!
That is interesting. Well, pulling water through the grouphead will not do anything to the water in the boiler. The boiler water can only be drawn out through the hot water nozzle, steam arm, or by opening the drain plug. The heat exchanger is what feeds the grouphead, and that comes in through a different route. I would recommend draining the machine using the drain plug on the left side of the boiler, then taking off the anti vacuum valve on top, and watching to see if the machine fills up to the point that water comes out of that hole once you turn it on. If it doesn't, see how it behaves otherwise for a few days. If it does overfill and water flows out of that hole, then you most likely have an autofill problem, but let's see what happens when you drain and refill first.
Water should not be leaking out of the anti vacuum valve.
If your gauge was at 1.7, it may mean that water has gotten into it because the machine has overfilled. Once you fix the problem, if the gauge is still reading erroneously high, you will need to take it off and evaporate the water out of it.
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