Sunday, January 15, 2023

How to Clean Your Espresso Machine: A Step-by-Step Guide

by Mads

There’s nothing quite like the rich aroma and flavor of a perfectly executed shot of espresso. The problem? Cleaning your espresso machine is a pain in the… you know where. For many, it’s just another chore that must be checked off before enjoying your morning coffee. But when left to fester, the grime and oils from brewing accumulate and can turn your beloved machine into a sticky mess. Luckily, there are ways to make this process painless and (dare we say) even enjoyable. Here is everything you need to know about cleaning your espresso machine at home.

What’s the Best Way to Clean an Espresso Machine?

When it comes to cleaning your espresso machine, the best method for your machine will vary depending on the type and model you own. This is due to the wide range of materials used in their construction. The general rule of thumb is that you should never use water to clean your espresso machine. This is due to the risk of corrosion when water comes into contact with stainless steel. Instead, you should follow a two-step process that begins with a thorough cleaning of the exterior followed by a deep cleaning of the interior. For the exterior, soft, clean cloth is essential for wiping away any residue that has built up over time. The exterior of your espresso machine is where a good portion of this grime will build up, so it is important to clean it regularly. For the interior, you’ll want to remove as much grime as possible with a soft cloth. This first step will allow you to get a good look at what needs to be cleaned. For those stubborn spots, you might want to try a non-abrasive sponge or a cleaning solution such as mild dish soap. In extreme cases, you can attempt to remove stubborn grime with white vinegar, though this is the last resort due to vinegar’s potential to corrode stainless steel.

How Often Should You Clean Your Espresso Machine?

The short answer: as often as possible. The longer answer? Well, how often you clean your espresso machine will depend largely on how often you use it. This is due to the fact that buildup will occur over time, no matter how often you run water through your machine. However, frequent cleaning is essential for the longevity of your espresso machine, especially if you use hard water. Hard water can be a real pain if you’re not careful. It is notorious for leaving mineral deposits and other grime behind, which can quickly build up inside your espresso machine. This buildup can cause all sorts of problems, from clogging water lines to corroding your espresso machine’s metal parts. If you have hard water, it is especially important to clean your espresso machine regularly.

The Dangers of Neglecting Your Espresso Machine

Regularly cleaning your espresso machine is essential for its optimal operation. However, cleaning your espresso machine is not enough. It is also important to regularly maintain your espresso machine. By regularly cleaning and maintaining, you will help extend the life of your espresso machine and help prevent costly repairs. This is especially important if you own a single-boiler espresso machine. These types of machines are less expensive to buy, but they also require more frequent cleaning and maintenance. They cannot handle the same level of abuse that a double-boiler machine can. If you neglect your espresso machine, you risk a buildup of impurities that can clog the machine’s water lines. This can cause your espresso machine to overheat, which could result in a fire or damage to the machine’s parts.

How to Clean an Espresso Machine: Step by step

To clean your espresso machine, follow these quick steps: – Exterior: Wipe down the exterior of your espresso machine with a soft, clean cloth. Be sure to remove any visible residue from the machine’s exterior. This will help prevent dust and other impurities from collecting. – Interior: Disassemble the interior of your machine and wipe it down with a soft cloth. Pay attention to any removable parts, including the group head, portafilter, and steam wand. – Final Cleaning: To finish, you can use mild dish soap to clean any grime that was left behind. Be sure to rinse the machine well after using a cleaning solution.

Tips for a Deep Clean of Your Espresso Machine

If you want to go the extra mile and thoroughly clean your espresso machine, there are a few things you can do. First, you should remove all removable parts, including the water lines, steam wand, and drip tray. You may want to mark these parts with painter’s tape or a sticker to remind yourself where they go. Next, you can scrub the insides of your machine with a soft cloth to remove any built-up grime. For stubborn spots, you can use a cleaning solution or white vinegar. To finish, you can use a paper towel to dry any remaining moisture and wipe down the machine’s exterior. Keep in mind that when cleaning your espresso machine, you want to avoid using anything abrasive. This includes paper towels, sponges, and brushes. While these materials may seem gentle, they can scratch stainless steel and damage other parts of your machine.


There’s nothing like a perfectly brewed espresso shot. But to get that perfect cup, you have to maintain your machine. Luckily, cleaning your espresso machine doesn’t have to be a dreaded chore. In fact, it can be relatively straightforward if you follow a few simple steps. When cleaning your espresso machine, focus on the exterior and interior of the machine to remove impurities. Be sure to avoid materials that could scratch the machine’s surface when cleaning.