Leaking steam boiler Profitec Pro 700

Equipment doesn't work? Troubleshooting? If you're handy, members can help.
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#1: Post by NorthWoodsMud »

Hi all, I'm new to the group and looking for some guidance as I trouble shoot my now leaking PP700. I have taken off the covers and elevated the machine to get a look at all components. It was immediately apparent there seems to be an issue with the steam boiler due to rust on the bolts that secure the heating element.

The 2nd attached image shows the system after I ran a full cycle and allowed it to cool and shows some water drops and the rusty parts. The leak is inconsistent and can be a teaspoon or, flood the counter at times.

I suspect I can just tighter the nuts, but in other posts this approach seems to open a can of worms. Is there a gasket in there that is fried? A sealant that has dried out? Or, has the heat/cool cycle and vibrations from the pump loosened things up?

The system holds pressure just fine and rises to temp too. The leak occurs following cool down and not while under pressure.

Thanks in advance for any insights.

- Alex

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#2: Post by austinado16 »

Alex, my guess would be that there's a big rubber o-ring there. If it were mine, I'd remove the heating element and replace what ever gasket or o-ring might be there. If I found that it was just an o-ring, I'd take it to the hardware store and see if I could match it up, even if for only the time being, while I ordered the correct o-ring (for example, I find it's a red o-ring, which is heat resistant, and all I can find at the hardware store will be the black o-rings).

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#3: Post by JRising »

I fear that you will find that the element-flange is so rusted that it may allow leakage past the new o-ring. But if you find a local shop with ECM/Profitec parts, you may want to try just the o-ring first and save a hundred bucks.

Of note: That's a lot of rust. My first reaction is "Oh My, that's an excellent example of the acidic rusting problem you get from hydrogen exchange softeners on city water with a lot of chloramines" If you are using a Hydrogen Exchange softener, I think you'll want to switch to a Sodium Exchange softener when it comes due.

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#4: Post by HB »

It looks like #18 below, part P9013:

See Profitec Pro 700: Parts Diagram from WholeLatteLove
Dan Kehn

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#5: Post by mwdnasa »

Hi, bit late to the party, but here goes. My Pro700 is about 6-7 years old and a year ago I found a puddle under the machine.

I flipped the machine upside down, removed the cover for the steam boiler, removed the 3 nuts (one was very corroded (why would one use non-stainless nuts here?! shame on you Profitec!)). Ensure to soak the rusty nut with lubriant and as you loosen it go forth and back (not just one direction) as you might snap the stud otherwise (just like I did with my rattle gun - thankfully up high so I have enough length left). Look up on YT- how to remove rusted bolts if you need.

Once the nuts were off I cleaned the boiler and heating element and replaced the Oring with a new one. I ran a M10 ? (cant remember) thread cutting die along all three studs to clean them up. (spent a few bucks on this tool, but replacing studs on this boiler or the boiler itself would be a giant pita, so I erred on the side of caution). Replaced nuts and washers with stainless ones too. There was a bit of pitting under the Oring on the boiler which concerned me. I left the cover for this access hole off as it just delays the puddles showing up so the problem can just fester should it reoccur. (brew boiler was fine at this stage)

About one year later I open the machine for some other reason and find leakage on the brew boiler - same problem it seemd. But as the drips where hitting the pump motor so far no puddle under the machine! Brew boiler had to come out fully to get access to heating element. So remove boiler from machine, mark carefully the orientation of all the fittings! (score it with a ruler or similar). Some fittings needed re-seating with plumbers tape too as there was evidence of leakage around the threads.
Removed heating element and found horrible corrosion on the boiler itself. And the heating element was corroded too. Had to get the sealing surface on the boiler machined on a lathe, no way around it. (got the boiler material tested too while at it - its only SS304! shame on you Profitec! I expected SS316 which is more corrosion resistant). Once heating element was back in place and everything assembled it turned out that the heating element itself had corroded through. Tiny pinhole. So had to order a new one and wait for delivery. Once that was in place machine was finally working again. Photos below are of the brew boiler repair.