La Marzocco GS3 burnt smell steam wand and group

Need help with equipment usage or want to share your latest discovery?
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#1: Post by glena »

Hi there!

I have a relatively new La Marzocco Gs3 (bought in August 23) and i noticed a weird smell coming from it. I first noticed it when steaming milk, the steam smells like burnt plastic. Also when i pull water from the group head, the water tastes like plastic. To make sure my water is not the problem i made a blind taste with 2 cups of water. One from my group head and one heated with a kettle. The water from the kettle tastes perfect, the water coming out of the La Marzocco tastes bad. Did anyone have the same?

Happy to hear from you!


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#2: Post by bostonbuzz »

That's a bit of a stumper. My first thought is you don't purge your wand and you have rancid milk in the boiler. However, the steam boiler and brew boiler water never come in contact with each other except incidentally while pulling hot water from the water tap a small amount sits in the tea mixer that goes in the brew circuit when later brewing. That's probably not enough to be a weird taste in the brew boiler from the steam boiler. So if you have a weird taste in both, it must be from a common issue.

The common area is the reservoir/plumbing to the pump and from the pump to the first mixing valve. It's possible you have some electrical short that burnt the reservoir tube or the braided stainless line from the pump to the tea mixer, but you would see that just by looking. Maybe you have some issue in the pump?

Of course you may have odd taste, I guess. Water always has some metal taste from espresso machines, but burnt plastic is quite different.
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