Eureka Atom - counter starts, relay click, no grinding

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patriot dude
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#1: Post by patriot dude »

I bought a Eureka Atom 60 almost 4 years ago and almost since it was new, it has had a inconsistent issue/problem that eventually goes away but comes back months later. I am currently dealing with it so I decided get serious and try to solve. Approximately every 6 months or so it will get into this cycle where it will not start grinding when any switch or button is pressed that would normally start the motor, that is until I power off and then turn back on whereas it will work again for one time. To be more descriptive, when I press the button, I will hear the small click of the relay only which is very quiet and the timer on the screen will begin to count down or up as usual, the screen reflects that the motor is grinding but only the relay has clicked, it is not grinding. I'll push in my portafilter to start and I'll hear the relay click but motor won't start, then I reset my grinder with on/off switch and the grinder will work only once and then need to be reset again. It is a strange problem that I guess is either an issue with the screen or with the relay board below the motor or perhaps the motor itself. Amazingly 100% of the time if I turn off the grinder and back on, then it will grind again by using any of the normal buttons that start the motor, either from the screen or portafilter switch, but typically it will only work once and rarely twice but I'll then I must power off/on the grinder again to get it to grind once again. I know this sounds crazy, generally this will be an issue for a week or maybe two and then the grinder just continues to work normally without needed to be turned off/on and basically works fine as it did in the past where I can start/stop the grinding as many times as I would normally and it performs as you would expect. Then eventually some months will pass and I'll push in my portafilter to start and I'll hear the relay click but motor won't start, I reset with on/off switch and the grinder will work only once and then need to be reset again. Back into the issue just like in the past. It is a strange problem that I guess is either an issue with the screen or with the relay board below the motor. Have any of you had this or a similar issue? I have poised this question to the folks at Clive and Scott has been very helpful, I am just still having the problem.

I disassembled and thoroughly cleaned my grinder last night, I checked all connections, vacuumed and blew out all the loose grinds, also removed the top burr and really cleaned that chamber out. There was some caked up super fine coffee powder in areas that had been building up over the years but it was not clogged that I could tell. The chute had coffee in it but I don't think it was backed up, just was there from when I last used it. The little thins metal clump separator does hold grinds behind it but I'm sure they blow past once the grinder starts. My goal was to reassemble it "as new" at least as far as it being cleaned out. I plan to order the V2 chute once they're back into stock at Clive. I hate to say the issue still happening just like it was before I cleaned and checked everything.

I do not make large adjustments in the grind setting that would bind the burrs, it is always between 7 and 7.5 (this number may be arbitrary, I don't know but that is my grind setting for espresso only). Motor must be fine because it always works, screen works and the relay does click when the motor doesn't start. What other component could it be? Should I replace the screen? I got a new screen almost three years ago but never installed it because this problem has always eventually gone away, which is a whole other confusing thing. I would never expect this type of problem to just resolve itself for months and then return but over the years, this has always been the case. Currently it's driving me nuts but, hell next week it might be working normal again.

If anyone can shed light on what parts I should replace, I'm certainly up to repairing this grinder but I don't want to randomly buy parts and trial and error it until it's fixed.

Regards,
Adam

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spopinski

#2: Post by spopinski »

Seems like it's a problem with the starting capacitor for the motor is faulty?

patriot dude (original poster)
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#3: Post by patriot dude (original poster) »

That does seem like the most likely part to me however I lack the experience in diagnosing this. Surprisingly neither Clive or Seattle Coffee Gear has made the capacitor suggestion but that is one of the first things that came to my mind as well.

The hardest part about this for me to understand from the beginning is how resetting the machine always allows it to work again.