I have recently ended up with a used Rancilio Silvia (unknown which version but included was its manual with a F.n number on a sticker). This type of single boiler machine is new to me, but I have done some research.
When performing the 'dry' startup as instructed I...
Fill the water tank, make sure both pipes are deep in the water..
Remove portafilter and open the steam knob..
Open the coffee delivery switch and then the power switch...
The machine then makes (a lot) of noise.. The first time for a long time 10 - 20 seconds.. But water does not dispense from the steam wand as expected.
After about 30 seconds, minor steam starts to escape, and a few drops of water, but in fear of the boiler element, I turn the main power off after 30 seconds, when the manual tells you to repeat.
If I repeat this process, the next time the system is started the loud pump noise is usually only for 2 - 3 seconds, and if this is in succession the steam and bubbles / drips of course comes quicker (as I presume the element is hot) somewhere in the mid 20 seconds count. I am fearful of repeating multiple times, seems its not doing what I expect, but this is a new (to me) machine.
Also of note is that leaving the machine to cool, every start, there is the loud pumping noise, I would imagine in a healthy primed system, without air in it, that it should start quietly each time ?? Otherwise I would be waking a household for that first mornings shot.
I suspect there is an actual pump problem, am I doing each step correctly, is there something I can test or check ?? Is there a way to 'force' water in to prime the pump via the pump line ?? Or is it likely just a weak or broken pump ?? Whats my next diagnosis step ??
I am fairly handy, and was looking to PID the silvia once I had become more skilled at its manual use anyway, so service and repairs, if possible, I would prefer to DiY on principal as well as cost.