Elektra Microcasa a Leva Shorting

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#1: Post by jemstu »

G'day all from Perth Australia,

I've had my MCAL for 14 years and all was well until a leak about a year ago and then it stopped working. I had replaced the piston gaskets as well as the main group gaskets etc about 5 years ago and thought nothing of it.

Removed the base and discovered that there was a significant amount of rust under the stand and replaced the element gasket and when turning it on again it tripped the RCD, so thought the element was fried. Unfortunately I didn't test the element with a multimeter, just ordered a new one online.'

New element arrived from Sydney in 3 days (excellent service from Espresso Workshop in Sydney) and I installed it and a new gasket and machine back to its usual perfect performance.

About 2 weeks later noticed more water on kitchen bench so removed the base again and placed machine on blue paper to work out where leak was coming from and seemed to be the pressure stat. So ordered one and replaced it 3 days later.

All fine and well until a short tripping the RCD a few days ago. Seems I have an earth leak somewhere...
Disconnecting the element wires and the machine turns on (light works) and no short. As soon as element connected, short again. So I thought I'd test the wires and main earth was giving intermittent reading. So thought I'd try something else.
Placed the old element in a glass jar with machine upside down. Connected the element wires to old element and turned machine on for a few seconds. Old element seems to be working OK. Disconnected and moved the earth wire and reconnected everything and the machine works again.

2 days later, turned the machine on and another trip of the RCD and external element still works so assume there is a problem with the earth wire not making proper contact? Anyone on here had the same issue with any machine and / or someone with electrical experience who can advise if an earth leak would cause this? Would it work to sand away rust and / or move the earth wire or do I need to replace wiring?

Your help is greatly appreciated!


#2: Post by DJF »

jemstu wrote:G'day all from Perth Australia,

Would it work to sand away rust and / or move the earth wire or do I need to replace wiring?

Your help is greatly appreciated!
A common problem with early/well used McCals with rusty bases. Relocate or clean the earth and you should be good to go.
"24 hours in a day, 24 beers in a case. Coincidence? I don't think so."

jemstu (original poster)

#3: Post by jemstu (original poster) replying to DJF »

Thanks DJF, appreciate it as was worried I'd have to replace the wiring loom and none in Australia. Will let you know how I get on tomorrow.

jemstu (original poster)

#4: Post by jemstu (original poster) »

Hi All,
Well, the saga seems to continue. MCAL was working fine for a couple of weeks and then started shorting again. Used a multimeter and everything seemed to check out as had low Ohm readings on every wire with an intermittent reading on the negative plug to the box connector. So changed out the entire power cord and a new socket plug - no luck.

Does anyone have any experience with bad elements. I replaced the element twice (thinking it was burnt out) so have the original and now 2x new ones and all give the same resistance (~ 56 ohms). When I connect an element externally to the machine there is no tripping, hence thinking it was a ground fault. When I connect the element installed in the machine it trips the breaker again. I've tried different power sockets and same result so know it's not a house wiring issue. There is a good earth connection to the machine and the full earth circuit is fine too (0.3 ohm) as well as each sector of the earth circuit.

Any suggestions before I start the process of replacing every wire individually as I'm more than stumped (and fed up with having stove-top percolated coffee :x ).