How many hours per day an espresso machine can be idle?

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DaumierS

#1: Post by DaumierS » Jun 12, 2017, 11:28 am

Without making a shot, I mean. That is if someone makes only 2-3 shots per day, but at uncertain times, can he/she keep the machine idle for, say, 6 hours? Would it lead to an excessive scaling? Also, wouldn't the hot water in the boilers be worse after several hours? With making tea I could certainly taste the differences between using the fresh water and already boiled once water.

DaumierS

#2: Post by DaumierS » Jun 12, 2017, 11:33 am

For example, if one wakes up randomly, anytime from 8am till 11am, can he/she program the machine to wake up at 7:30am every day? Even though it will be used for one shot only once, say, at 11am? and then turn it off at noon? Would it result in excessive scaling?

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JohnB.
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#3: Post by JohnB. » Jun 12, 2017, 1:13 pm

It doesn't matter how you use your machine you will get scaling if you use hard water. Keep the hardness level under 50PPM & you'll be fine. You'll also want to check the PH/alkalinity of your water to make sure that it is not acidic.
LMWDP 267

DaumierS

#4: Post by DaumierS » Jun 12, 2017, 8:13 pm

I got a feedback from LM customer support, they recommend to keep the machine on 24/7, even if you are making only a few shots per day. This answers my question.

I somehow was under impression that the longer you keep the boilers hot, the more scaling the machine gets. I am wondering, do people here keep their machines on 24/7, as a matter of fact?

rilec

#5: Post by rilec » replying to DaumierS » Jun 12, 2017, 8:44 pm

As a newbie, I'm curious to know this as well...

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JohnB.
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#6: Post by JohnB. » Jun 12, 2017, 9:43 pm

DaumierS wrote:I somehow was under impression that the longer you keep the boilers hot, the more scaling the machine gets. I am wondering, do people here keep their machines on 24/7, as a matter of fact?
I have in the past but decided that I slept better with the machines off at night. Both of mine are on timers & come on at 6am/off at 6pm. I keep the water in the 40PPM range so no scaling issues.
LMWDP 267

samuellaw178
Team HB

#7: Post by samuellaw178 » Jun 12, 2017, 10:48 pm

DaumierS wrote:I somehow was under impression that the longer you keep the boilers hot, the more scaling the machine gets. I am wondering, do people here keep their machines on 24/7, as a matter of fact?
My understanding is, if you switch your machine on & off, scale is more likely to form. Mineral solubility decreases as temperature cools down. So the mineral will precipitate out of the water. Even if you heat it up later, it's less easy to dissolve. Once you have limescale/crystal as a 'seed', it's also easier for subsequent scale to deposit at the site.

The only exception to this is if you have a boiler leak and water is evaporating all the time, mineral will then concentrate (less water over time) and it will start scaling more easily when it's left 24/7.

Best bet is use the right water.

Another consideration is gaskets/parts wear faster when you have your machine on 24/7. All machines can be left on 24/7 but that's the trade off. 6 hours idle is easy for most machine, as long as it has autofill and appropriate protection system (unlike single boilers like Silvia). For long idles, it's also wise for the boiler to have some sort of insulation (to keep internal components colder and less electricity consumption).

DaumierS

#8: Post by DaumierS » Jun 12, 2017, 10:55 pm


DaumierS

#9: Post by DaumierS » Jun 12, 2017, 11:47 pm

An obvious observation, but still. After 20-30 min the PID controller window says that the target temperature has been reached. But the quality of shots, if I do not give the machine at least extra 30-40 min to heat up, will be quite mediocre.

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Peppersass
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#10: Post by Peppersass » Jun 13, 2017, 2:35 am

JohnB. wrote:I have in the past but decided that I slept better with the machines off at night. Both of mine are on timers & come on at 6am/off at 6pm. I keep the water in the 40PPM range so no scaling issues.
Glad to see someone else sleeps better with the machine off. In fact, I have mine on only about four hours a day, which is my coffee drinking window.

I happen to have a whole-house energy monitor that records usage on every circuit. When I kept my espresso machine on for 16 hours a day it was the third largest consumer of electricity in the house (behind the entertainment center plasma TV / class-A amps, and my large desktop computer.)