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Help! Verona - Pump motor running, but no suction from water tank


kevin
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Good thought @Markk, but I'm more convinced by the blocked or valve failed theory - mostly based on there being no suction from the water tank.

Today I got distracted by another project, but I did get the sides off the machine and that lets me see a lot more.  I intend to document the water paths, if I can see into it enough, and then figure out from the readings where the blockage / failure is.

Espresso: QuickMill Vetrano 2B, Niche Zero, Pergtamp, VST 18g basket, Brewista scales

Pourover: Hario V60 number 2, MBK Feldgrind, Acaia Lunar scales

Aeropress: Eureka Zenith 65e, Sage smart kettle

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Hi there,

please bear in mind I k now nothing, I mean literally nothing, Dave and the gang are definitely your best bet, but it reminds me of a problem I had with a different kind of machine - nothing to do with coffee, and I did a bit of a google to see if anyone had mentioned this in relation to your machine and found the following - please please do not do what is recommended in this article without checking it with the excellent, very knowledgacble people here, as again, I cannot stress enough - I know nothing...

air bubbles causing issues in machines unised for a bit

 

ALthouth the article is about noise, I wonder - could it be possible that your blockage is as simple as air in the system?

again - please check with the actual people that know things.

hope it helps.

Edited by Catlady101
missed a bit
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10 hours ago, Catlady101 said:

ALthouth the article is about noise, I wonder - could it be possible that your blockage is as simple as air in the system?

Thanks @Catlady101, what a great find!  I'll definitely bear that in mind when poking around inside the machine.

Espresso: QuickMill Vetrano 2B, Niche Zero, Pergtamp, VST 18g basket, Brewista scales

Pourover: Hario V60 number 2, MBK Feldgrind, Acaia Lunar scales

Aeropress: Eureka Zenith 65e, Sage smart kettle

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I also note this thread https://www.home-barista.com/repairs/quickmill-vetrano-2b-no-suction-in-tank-mode-t45379-10.html which is a very similar sympton, and ends up as a blocked output nozzle from the pump.  Although thinking about it, if the pump output were blocked, I guess I wouldn't be seeing the 9 bar of pressure on the gauge?

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Espresso: QuickMill Vetrano 2B, Niche Zero, Pergtamp, VST 18g basket, Brewista scales

Pourover: Hario V60 number 2, MBK Feldgrind, Acaia Lunar scales

Aeropress: Eureka Zenith 65e, Sage smart kettle

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30 minutes ago, kevin said:

I also note this thread https://www.home-barista.com/repairs/quickmill-vetrano-2b-no-suction-in-tank-mode-t45379-10.html which is a very similar sympton, and ends up as a blocked output nozzle from the pump.  Although thinking about it, if the pump output were blocked, I guess I wouldn't be seeing the 9 bar of pressure on the gauge?

So it must be blocked after the gauge (as I suggested)...unfortunately the gauge take off used to be right close to the pump on the Verona, unless they changed it.

Edited by DavecUK
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Sticks and Stones, sours…or rancid (horrible). Quakers hide until roasted, pick em out and flick them in the bin. Life is too short for bad coffee

 

 

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A bit more progress... I've largely traced the water path, and I think the problem could be the same as the one on that Home Barista thread.  The output from the pump immediately goes into a T, where the straight-on path goes into the brew pressure gauge (so the problem is after this, as you say @DavecUK).  The other output from the T goes into an elbow, and then onto a tube (I think the joint from the elbow onto the tube is where the person in the Home Barista thread said their blocked gicleur is).

Something like this:

```

  Water inputs ---> Pump ---> T ---> Brew gauge

                                                        |

                                                        \---> Elbow ---> (gicleur?) ---> tube off to the boilers

```

In a little test, I disconnected the tube that goes off to the boilers, made sure tube from the tank was submerged, and briefly turned on the machine for the pump to run for a few seconds.  In theory, water should have been spewing out of the elbow where the disconnected tube should have been, but actually there was nothing.  The tube from the tank might have sucked up a small amount of water, I'm not sure.

Given that the brew gauge is reading 9 bar, but nothing's coming out of the elbow, I think the elbow is blocked.  I'm now trying to figure out how to remove it to investigate, and hoping I don't make things worse...

It's the furthest away port on the pump in this photo (the near port is the input):

https://www.flickr.com/gp/magickevin/48L0y4

Edited by kevin

Espresso: QuickMill Vetrano 2B, Niche Zero, Pergtamp, VST 18g basket, Brewista scales

Pourover: Hario V60 number 2, MBK Feldgrind, Acaia Lunar scales

Aeropress: Eureka Zenith 65e, Sage smart kettle

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just work through methodically and you will find it.

 

There won't be a Gicleur (Italian for jet) there, but there should be a 1 way valve and that might be the culprit.

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Sticks and Stones, sours…or rancid (horrible). Quakers hide until roasted, pick em out and flick them in the bin. Life is too short for bad coffee

 

 

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Success!  The problem was around there, I'm not 100% sure which side of the elbow, but it is now unclogged.

I had a terrible time trying to get the elbow off, I think it's loctite'd on perhaps?  However, I noticed that when taking the input tube off, it released the pressure from inside the pump which should have gone out past the blockage (this was the residual pressure ~2.5 bar reading on the brew gauge).  After failing to get the elbow off, I wondered... just wondered... if it was limescale then maybe having released the pressure I could get it to draw just enough citric acid in to dissolve the blockage.

So, I reconnected the input tube (at this point the output tube was still disconnected), submerged the tank feeder tube into a 5% citric acid solution, and ran the pump for 15 seconds or so.  It definitely drew in some of the acid, so I left it like that wondering what to do next.  After a minute or two, completely without warning, the output from the elbow suddenly started gurgling, and then hissing, and then spurted some water out!  It was free again!  (I had anticipated this and had plenty of cloths around to protect the rest of the machine)

I then reconnected all of the tubes, and ran the machine - it was happily drawing in from the citric acid tank, so I let it draw for a while and then it stopped after about the right amount of time for the boilers to be full.  Lifting the lever also properly ran the pump and eventually streamed water out of the group head.

I'm now doing a proper descale cycle.  And I promise never to leave it so long between descaling it in the future...

I'm very grateful to everyone for your help, and especially to @DavecUK for all of your tweaks to the machine design, they really do make the world of difference.

Let this be a warning to everyone else to descale little and often :)

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Espresso: QuickMill Vetrano 2B, Niche Zero, Pergtamp, VST 18g basket, Brewista scales

Pourover: Hario V60 number 2, MBK Feldgrind, Acaia Lunar scales

Aeropress: Eureka Zenith 65e, Sage smart kettle

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@kevin, this is great. Even better than descaling, it’s best to prevent scale build up all together. Take a look at the Osmio Zero, or if that’s not convenient or feasible, think about using Volvic, Tesco Ashbeck or Waitrose Essentials Lockhills. Those bottled waters will scale, eventually, but it will be a few years before there’s any insignificant build up.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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Current: Lelit Elizabeth / Niche Zero / VST baskets / Distilled water + 100mg NaCO3/L

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Also at: CoffeeTime Forum & Niche Zero Owners Group

 

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