All coffee equipment requires ongoing care and maintenance. From the day-to-day to restoration, understand what’s involved
Cleaning and maintaining your coffee equipment with United Baristas Workshop
Clean and maintain your coffee equipment to preserve its value, protect against revenue loss, and lift the quality of the coffee you serve your customers.
Planning your service regime? Need to speak to an engineer? Make sure things get done by understanding who performs what function, when and why.
All coffee equipment, and more specifically espresso machines, require regular cleaning. It is envisaged by equipment manufacturers that a baseline level of service will be carried out in situ by staff members.
Regular cleaning reduces wear and prevents that build up of deposits that lead to more serious issues.
The types of tasks in this category primarily include general daily, weekly or monthly cleaning, for example, cleaning steam wands, group heads, and burrs.
Identify all the cleaning tasks required for each item of coffee equipment and add these tasks to your daily, weekly tasks.
Most coffee equipment requires several front-end services per year. These tasks include tasks such as the replacement of group head seals, burrs, and water filters.
These tasks can either be performed in house, or by an engineer during a service visit. It is important to plan who and when is going to perform these tasks so that there is no confusion.
Servicing can take the form of a front end service (in situ in the premises), or a full service commonly undertaken in the engineer’s workshop facility. Many businesses chose to alternative front end and full services, so a machine benefitting from bi-annual servicing would typically have one front end service and one workshop service each year.
Espresso machines also require require annual certification to comply with the Pressure Systems Safety Regulations (PSSR). Checks and certification can now be performed by engineers who have undergone training to become a ‘component person’. Many businesses now coincide boiler inspections with a service.
When a machine has been poorly maintained and breaks down an emergency call-out is required. Emergency call-outs can and do happen; but they are a sign that something went wrong long ago, and almost always a sign that routine cleaning and maintenance has not been undertaken.
During a emergency call-out, not much can be done other than a temporary fix to get the machine back up and running until a full service can be scheduled.
It’s best practice for baristas and businesses to actively plan to carry out regular cleaning, maintenance and servicing to prevent breakdown, loss of revenue, and further lift the quality of the coffee they serve their customers.
Machines that have been damaged in an accident, been out of service for a period of time, or have been seriously neglected typically require servicing in a workshop to ensure all components are functioning again. As long as parts are available, many espresso machines can be almost fully repaired.
Restoration & Rebuild
Older and vintage machines can often be returned to working condition. Restoration becomes more challenging if parts are no longer available or the bodywork and chassis require significant work. There are some spectacular classic espresso machines still in circulation, if you are lucky enough to get your hands on one!