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Lelit PL041QE started blowing GFI outlet and reduced steam performance
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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > Lelit PL041QE...  
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Transam
Senior Member


Joined: 25 Dec 2012
Posts: 5
Location: Virginia
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Lelit PL041QE
Grinder: Vario
Posted Sun May 4, 2014, 10:50am
Subject: Lelit PL041QE started blowing GFI outlet and reduced steam performance
 

2 year old Lelit PL041QE was running well then one day started blowing the GFI breaker outlet. Thinking it might be the outlet as they do go bad, I moved it to a regular outlet and it worked. So I started my normal process but the steam process only went about half way before it ran out of steam. The milk was barely warm. Hmmmm. I turned the steam off, ran a little water through the wand to recharge the reservoir, let er heat up go until the light came on as always (which took longer than normal) , and even the second time it still didn't get the same milk as hot as it did the previous day. Frothing is out of the question so the steam pressure isn't as strong either. I cleaned and descaled the machine and during the process I put one hand on the fridge and the other on the Lelit. I got a nice little tingle, enough to make me let go quickly. I tried touching the stove and the Lelit at the same time, got the same thing! Thought about standing in water but figured I tested it enough :)

I think it is obvious that I have an electrical problem which could be causing the reduced performance as well. I am fairly handy, have a voltage tester, but am not sure I want to tackle this.

Is there a known issue that is easy to test for that could be causing this? Or is this a job for a professional? Appreciate any input or suggestions.
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1stline
Senior Member
1stline
Joined: 24 Jan 2002
Posts: 496
Location: Freehold, NJ USA
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: Undisclosed
Grinder: Indisclosed
Vac Pot: Bodum Electric
Drip: None
Roaster: None
Posted Mon May 5, 2014, 10:41am
Subject: Re: Lelit PL041QE started blowing GFI outlet and reduced steam performance
 

This seems like a boiler run dry, then then the heating element exposed to air and melting. The heating element will need to be checked with a multimeter.

 
Sincerely,
Jim Piccinich
Business Partner
1st-line Equipment, LLC
www.1st-line.com

Follow us on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/1stline
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Transam
Senior Member


Joined: 25 Dec 2012
Posts: 5
Location: Virginia
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Lelit PL041QE
Grinder: Vario
Posted Mon May 5, 2014, 5:01pm
Subject: Re: Lelit PL041QE started blowing GFI outlet and reduced steam performance
 

Sounds like a nuclear meltdown.
What am i looking for, high resistance?
You seem close, I noticed the shock is higher when the steam switch is on (had the girlfriend 'hold this').
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Transam
Senior Member


Joined: 25 Dec 2012
Posts: 5
Location: Virginia
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Lelit PL041QE
Grinder: Vario
Posted Mon May 5, 2014, 5:40pm
Subject: Re: Lelit PL041QE started blowing GFI outlet and reduced steam performance
 

Going to make me show my ignorance.

Attached is an image of what I think is the boiler (above where the portafilter connects). At roughly 7, 9, and 11 are dual connector sensors. I checked Ohms across the 2 connectors of each and got .4 Ohms on all 3 pairs. I then checked each to ground, got a full 1 on each (assume this is max resistance, so no short).

Not sure if this is good/bad news, awaiting diagnosis or further instructions.

Transam: Lelit2.jpg
(Click for larger image)
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1stline
Senior Member
1stline
Joined: 24 Jan 2002
Posts: 496
Location: Freehold, NJ USA
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: Undisclosed
Grinder: Indisclosed
Vac Pot: Bodum Electric
Drip: None
Roaster: None
Posted Tue May 6, 2014, 9:54am
Subject: Re: Lelit PL041QE started blowing GFI outlet and reduced steam performance
 

Transam Said:

Sounds like a nuclear meltdown.
What am i looking for, high resistance?
You seem close, I noticed the shock is higher when the steam switch is on (had the girlfriend 'hold this').

Posted May 5, 2014 link

Please understand, for liability reasons, we can not post here how to evaluate anything electrical as serious personal injury or physical damage can result. If you purchased the unit from us, you can email me using the contact form on our web site. Otherwise, the unit would need to be sent in for evaluation.

 
Sincerely,
Jim Piccinich
Business Partner
1st-line Equipment, LLC
www.1st-line.com

Follow us on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/1stline
Twitter: http://twitter.com/1stline
Blog: http://1st-line.blogspot.com/
YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/1stlineespresso
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calblacksmith
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calblacksmith
Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 7,781
Location: Riverside, Ca, U.S.A.
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: ECM Vene. A1, La Cimbali M32
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Roaster: gave it a try, decided no
Posted Tue May 6, 2014, 12:49pm
Subject: Re: Lelit PL041QE started blowing GFI outlet and reduced steam performance
 

What he said. The most to be said is that it sounds like a melted element. The heater should be replaced. A near 100% proof positive of a bad heater is that it pops the GFI, on top of that, you should NEVER feel ANY electric power at any time on the machine. The by far, most common way for that to happen is to have a bad heater.

Send it in for service if you are not comfortable and know what you are doing with electricity.

 
In real life, my name is
Wayne P.
Anything I post is personal opinion and is only worth as much as anyone else's personal opinion. YMMV!

Feed the newbs, starve the trolls and above all enjoy what you drink!
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Transam
Senior Member


Joined: 25 Dec 2012
Posts: 5
Location: Virginia
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Lelit PL041QE
Grinder: Vario
Posted Tue May 6, 2014, 1:39pm
Subject: Re: Lelit PL041QE started blowing GFI outlet and reduced steam performance
 

Ah come on, I'll have the girlfriend test it for us :)

I unplugged it to do the testing and am reasonably OK with electricity. It runs as long as it is connected to a regular outlet and not connected to the GFI outlet, perhaps the GFI is more sensitive since this is what it is for. Also, it makes Espresso which is even heated, just doesn't produce much steam for the milk. It was purchased from 1st Line so I'll head there.

Thanks
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1stline
Senior Member
1stline
Joined: 24 Jan 2002
Posts: 496
Location: Freehold, NJ USA
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: Undisclosed
Grinder: Indisclosed
Vac Pot: Bodum Electric
Drip: None
Roaster: None
Posted Tue May 6, 2014, 1:53pm
Subject: Re: Lelit PL041QE started blowing GFI outlet and reduced steam performance
 

Transam Said:

Ah come on, I'll have the girlfriend test it for us :)

I unplugged it to do the testing and am reasonably OK with electricity. It runs as long as it is connected to a regular outlet and not connected to the GFI outlet, perhaps the GFI is more sensitive since this is what it is for. Also, it makes Espresso which is even heated, just doesn't produce much steam for the milk. It was purchased from 1st Line so I'll head there.

Thanks

Posted May 6, 2014 link

Please understand, that other members in this forum (who may be less inclined with electricity) may follow what is posted, and then all sorts of legal issues occur. You can email for assistance at my sales address.

 
Sincerely,
Jim Piccinich
Business Partner
1st-line Equipment, LLC
www.1st-line.com

Follow us on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/1stline
Twitter: http://twitter.com/1stline
Blog: http://1st-line.blogspot.com/
YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/1stlineespresso
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emradguy
Senior Member
emradguy
Joined: 31 Mar 2011
Posts: 3,124
Location: Houston
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Duetto II; Twist v2
Grinder: M Major, Macap M4 x2, VDD...
Drip: Espro presses; Aeropress
Roaster: H-B "List of Favorites"
Posted Tue May 6, 2014, 2:41pm
Subject: Re: Lelit PL041QE started blowing GFI outlet and reduced steam performance
 

Transam Said:

Ah come on, I'll have the girlfriend test it for us :)

Posted May 6, 2014 link

Now, that is funny!

 
.
Always remember the most important thing is what ends up in your cup!
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Frost
Senior Member
Frost
Joined: 26 Jul 2007
Posts: 2,095
Location: Sierra
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Isomac Venus
Grinder: Lelit PL53
Roaster: Poppery I w/variac, MET, BT
Posted Tue May 6, 2014, 2:42pm
Subject: Re: Lelit PL041QE started blowing GFI outlet and reduced steam performance
 

Transam Said:

Ah come on, I'll have the girlfriend test it for us :)

I unplugged it to do the testing and am reasonably OK with electricity. It runs as long as it is connected to a regular outlet and not connected to the GFI outlet, perhaps the GFI is more sensitive since this is what it is for. Also, it makes Espresso which is even heated, just doesn't produce much steam for the milk. It was purchased from 1st Line so I'll head there.

Thanks

Posted May 6, 2014 link

Given the symptoms and obvious safety issues with electrical shock, you should immediately quit using the machine until you have the heater replaced. This is what GFI outlets are designed to protect you from. The case of your machine is currently charged with 120Volts AC.  In addition, the insulation of the cal rod  heater is releasing into the brew water where it will cause more problems, and not something you want to drink either.
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