How to drain water from your lever espresso machine

The lever espresso machine represents the state of the art with regard to the preparation of an espresso according to tradition.

As baristas manage the infusion process completely manually, in fact, they are able to add their own personal touch to the preparation of a coffee with a unique taste.

Although there are subtle but important differences between the various models (in particular, you can read our guide to find out the difference between traditional lever and spring-lever coffee machines there is one aspect that all machines have in common: the need to keep them clean.

The water that we put into our machines is never completely pure and in the long term the solids inside precipitate, ultimately dirtying or damaging the internal components.

Although washing the inside of the boiler is one of the least frequent operations, it is nonetheless important in order to ensure the efficiency of our lever coffee machine.

But how should you carry out a complete cleaning? What are the steps to clean it correctly, like a pro? Follow our guide and find out how to drain water and thoroughly clean your machine.

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How to empty the lever espresso machine


The water must reach the boiling point to ensure healthy coffees that are always free from bacteria or mould residues.
But, as mentioned above, to thoroughly clean the coffee machine, it must first be emptied completely and all the water remaining in the circuits must be removed.

In fact, adding water daily simply dilutes the water already in the machine, without really removing the accumulated residues completely.

Although different models have different designs, there are some operations that are substantially similar, if not identical, for most coffee machines:

  1. First, turn off the machine and open the steam valve. Releasing the pressure in the machine is the first step to take before proceeding to cleaning the machine completely.
  2. After removing the drip tray, it is necessary to locate the drain valve. It is usually located at the bottom of the boiler or near the drain tray.
  3. At this stage, we are ready to drain the hot water by slowly opening the drain valve. The operation could take a few minutes and you need to have a little patience; if only a small quantity of water drains out, it could be that its passage is blocked by limescale, in which case you would need clean the top of the boiler.
    When the water has completely drained, the valve can be closed.
  4. Open the steam valves, turn on the steam nozzles, and keep them locked in the ON position. This operation will allow you to clean this part of the machine completely.
  5. Fill the boiler using the manual filling valve.
  6. Drain the machine again by opening the drain valve and then close it again once all the water has drained out.
  7. Fill the boiler ¾ full.
  8. Close the steam valves, position all the levers in the OFF position

Et voilà, the machine is now clean and ready to use.

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