Breville Dual Boiler Mods and Maintenance - Page 23

Need help with equipment usage or want to share your latest discovery?

#221: Post by jgordon311 »

pcrussell50 wrote:The "whole ring" style is the old design that is now obsolete. You have two choices:

1) you can buy a new group for about $160 and replace it yourself. It's a fairly big though straightforward job (and it comes with a new portafilter too). It will be of the new design that uses the two piece insert scheme that is easy to do.

2) Send it in to Breville. For the fixed fee, which includes free shipping both ways AND they even pack it for you, they will either fix it or send you a brand new machine. My guess is it a bigger job than they want to pay for and they send you a new one.

Thank you, Peter. Do you have a link for the correct group? I found this one: ... 39503.html from the same thread I spoke of. Thank you for your help.


#222: Post by pcrussell50 » replying to jgordon311 »

Yes, that is the one. And you should probably order a spare set of group collar inserts as well for later on down the road in case you wear out your new ones again... Though if you are gentle they should last for years before needing replacement. Mine lasted years and never did wear out.

LMWDP #553


#223: Post by clc12rock »

Do you guys use the water filter in your machine? I mix distilled water + Third Wave Espresso for the water in my machine, so I was thinking maybe the filter is pointless or possibly even removing minerals from the water.


#224: Post by pcrussell50 » replying to clc12rock »

Filter is pointless. I don't use it. The pickup at the bottom should have a wire mesh screen on it. That should be enough to trap any coffee grind particles that somehow still make their way in.

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#225: Post by pankrakes »

Hey does anyone here have an extra drip tray grill sitting around? A while back, user eltakeiteasy posted about his modification to fit the Acaia lunar (Breville Dual Boiler (BES920XL) Drain Tray Mod for Acaia Lunar Scale).

I just bought the Pantechnicon insert for the linea mini (insert only) and I am going to try to cut it into my existing tray. In the event I royally mess up my drip tray, I want to have another as a backup. Its out of stock right now from Brevill but I can get it on rereplacement parts. I figured I'd check here first and see if anyone has it laying around and want to offload it. ... 01741.html


#226: Post by grufromtheloo »

Anyone know if you can manually descale the BDB? There's an older 920 unit I am going to try to bring back to life and no way am I running the programmed descale cycle. Is it possible to remove probes then fill with vinegar/descaler and drain out ports? Worse case I'll remove the boilers if I absolutely have to.


#227: Post by pcrussell50 » replying to grufromtheloo »

You shouldn't have to remove the boilers. The drains will do. You can remove clean and inspect the solenoid too. And unless there is scale blockage in the group, that should be good enough.

On the boilers, you can unclip the wires from the sensors, and pull the sensors for cleaning and inspection. From there you can shine a light into one of the openings, or slip a cheap wifi endoscope in and have a look around, before and after descaling.

FWIW, one of the Aussies over on coffeesnobs insists that he knows why the descale process goes wrong and knows how to avoid it. And he may well be right. But I still prefer to run safe water like the big dogs.

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#228: Post by zooey105 »

Hey y'all.. I have a weird situation with my BDB. It was my dad's and I've had it for a few years now. The symptoms:
  • Heats up fine
  • No leaks whatsoever
  • Steam wand works fine
  • Hot water tap works fine
  • Pulling a shot: no reading on the pressure gague and no water at all out of the group head. The main pump makes normal noises as if there should be a shot
I've taken the thing apart and replaced the main pump and solenoid. I've cleared the lines to my best ability and descaled both boilers. I have also soaked the entire showerhead assembly in citric acid and blown through all the inlets/outlets to confirm nothing's blocked there.

I can feel hot water going out of the 2nd boiler and through the solenoid for the hot water toggle valve, but from what I can tell when pulling a shot, the water seems to be stuck, not going from the 2nd boiler into the solenoid. My thoughts:
  • the water is not exiting the 2nd boiler into the solenoid for some reason electric reason
  • the water is somehow getting trapped in the solenoid assembly blocking further pressure OR the solenoid isn't switching to let it through in 'pulling a shot' mode (which would be the above issue)
As of note, a few weeks before this started happening I got the 'SERVICE' indicator on the machine (6000+ shots, send in for repairs, etc.) Is there any chance Breville somehow programmatically locks me out of pulling a shot? Any ideas? I've been searching all online (including here) for the past few weeks but found nothing.


#229: Post by pcrussell50 »

I think you've already reasoned your way to the number one suspect... lack of electrical activity to the solenoid. Time to verify:
1) do you keep the top cover with the screws out and stored safely somewhere so you can lift off the cover any time you like?
2) IF the solenoid is opening, you will hear it click, and more importantly, you will feel it click if you put your hand on it
3) if you are still unsure, pull one of the blade connectors off the pump, then you will not have pump noise drowning out the solenoid
4) if the solenoid is getting power it will click open and hum while it remains open

At 6000+ shots, that makes you an iron man. I had one of the original BDB -900's. It lasted six years before I sent it into Breville because it stopped pre infusing. But it had around 3000 shots. It is entirely possible that Breville "cut you off", with the "service" message.

So what if this actually happened?
1) Well of course you could send it off to Breville. And they will probably send you a new machine.
2) You have an opportunity to get it working again and try something new before you do. You will need to make yourself a test switch. Some lamp cord with two prong plug on one end, an on/off switch in the middle, and you crimp a couple of blade connectors on the other end. If you put your blades in place of the Breville blades and plug the other end into the wall, you now have direct manual control of the solenoid. If you turn on the pump, and then flick on your manual solenoid switch, water will run and you will be back in business... albeit manually
2A) So what, you say? Well... you can now try to duplicate the fabled "Londinium profile". By first running up the pump at full power, no pre infusion, and THEN opening solenoid, you will be able to fill the headspace and get pressure on the puck, ASAP. At five bar, cut the pump while keeping the solenoid open. Bump the pump every so often as needed to keep five bar. After you get first drops, then turn the pump back on and finish the shot as usual. You are looking to grind fine enough that it takes about 20-30s to get first drops at five bar or so pre infusion.

This ^^^ is what I've been doing for about the last month that a mate of mine has had a Londinium. It is the most forgiving and fault tolerant profile I have ever tried to date. Beautiful, great tasting extractions.

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#230: Post by zooey105 »

Oh man, you are my hero. Stepped through it all and pointed me exactly where I needed to go: manually opening the solenoid does the trick. Thank you so much!

Makes me wonder if it was a part on the logic board that went bad, or if it really is a 'SERVICE' issue. Regardless, looks like I'll be running a Londinium profile! I see a few of your videos on youtube.