One part of espresso machine maintenance is descaling from time to time. This is an easy process that won’t take much of your time, but it’s a key to your machine working properly and producing excellent-tasting espresso for you. Follow our descaling a Delonghi espresso machine instructions listed below.
Descaling a Delonghi Espresso Machine Instructions
This is a simple maintenance task that you will only have to do once in a while; depending on your water and frequency of use, you may need to descale once every month to once every few months. You need to remove the buildup that occurs in your hot water tank over time.
The basic process to follow is to use the descaling solution (mixed with water), run it through the machine as directed, and then run plain hot water through the machine afterward, as directed by the manufacturer. More detail and video below.
Use the manufacturer recommended product to descale your Delonghi espresso machine, which is the De’Longhi EcoDecalk Descaler, Eco-Friendly Universal Descaling Solution for Coffee & Espresso Machines, 16.90 oz.
You will also need a container to collect the water coming out of the machine during this process. In the video below they use a small casserole dish.
You should mix a solution of 1 part descaler to 10 parts water. Fill the hot water tank with this mix and then run the machine on a descaling, cleaning, or hot water cycle.
Machine settings vary so if you’re not sure, refer to your specific product manual.
Make sure to collect the water in a container that’s big enough, such as the small casserole dish used in this video.
Once the solution has been running through the machine for about ten seconds, turn on the steam wand so the cleaner can run through it as well.
Wait ten more seconds and then turn the wand back off.
Then you’re going to let the machine rest for 15 minutes.
After 15 minutes has elapsed, run the machine again and repeat the process until the water tank is empty.
Once this cleaning cycle completes, you’ll need to run plain hot water through the machine.
Just fill the tank with plain water and repeat the above process to flush the cleaning solution from the machine.
Why Do You Need to Descale a Delonghi Espresso Machine?
Buildup of limescale or other minerals occurs over time, and this is completely normal. This can clog up your machine and affect performance and coffee taste.
The manufacturer states that descaling your espresso machine on a regular basis can reduce the chances of premature equipment breakdown, improve the taste of your espresso, improve the crema you get with your espresso, and increase energy efficiency.
How Often Do You Need to Descale?
The frequency depends on a few factors. First, your machine can let you know with an indicator message, in which case you don’t have to keep track of the time between descalings but just watch for the alert. How often you use your machine is the biggest factor that determines how often you need to descale.
In some households, espresso machines get used multiple times per day every single day, but you may only use yours on the weekends when you’re having a leisurely morning with a homemade latte. Water harness is the other main factor determining how often you need to complete the process. Hard water has a higher mineral content that means the buildup will accumulate faster.
What Happens if You Don’t Descale an Espresso Machine?
If you don’t descale the machine, the buildup will keep happening until you’ll eventually find very noticeable performance issues with the machine. The machine can become clogged, which affects brew temperature and leads to having espresso that doesn’t come out right. Another consequence is that you machine is more likely to break down sooner than it ever would with proper care.
Can You Use Vinegar to Descale an Espresso Machine?
Many people want to know about using vinegar to descale since it’s less expensive than the proper cleaning solution, and it’s also something most of us are likely to have on hand already. But the answer is that vinegar isn’t a strong enough solution to effectively remove the buildup in your machine.
Proper maintenance is important if you want to get the best results from your machine and keep the machine’s operation trouble-free for as long as possible. Descaling is easy to do and just takes a little bit of your time once a month to every few months, depending on your water hardness and frequency of using the machine.