Nuova Simonelli Ellimatic / Faint hissing sound

Equipment doesn't work? Troubleshooting? If you're handy, members can help.
F9zSlavik

#1: Post by F9zSlavik »

Hi all, now that I got a PF for my Elli finally and now that I am using her, I've noticed a hissing sound. Not quite sure where its coming from. Maybe someone can tell me where to look. She is making good espressos, no issues there. I'd like to keep this baby running for as long as I can. I took a video of it, the video exaggerates the hissing sound, it's a little faint but still very noticeable. On top of the boiler, where the PRV should be, i see what looks like a thermal sensor. Not sure if gas is leaking from there or is suppose to leak from here. Maybe someone can share some light. Also noticed deep inside, mid of the boiler, I see a lot of green scale. Not sure what that is all about. Maybe someone can educate me.


Ignore the drawn marks on the pic

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another_jim
Team HB

#2: Post by another_jim »

Mild hissing is almost always a slow steam leak from one of the fittings at the top of the boiler or from the steam valve. If you listen closely you should be able to locate it. Sometimes simply tightening the fitting will work; sometimes you'll need sealing tape, or a new a seal or gasket.
Jim Schulman

F9zSlavik (original poster)

#3: Post by F9zSlavik (original poster) »

Having a hard time finding where the hissing is coming from. Ive notice that in the group head, at the top there is a metal block with a plate on it. It looks like its missing 2 screws. I put a glass near it and it didnt fog up.
I do see a lot of green material behind it, there are a few fittings near it with some scale around it but nothing that would indicate a leak.
Would it be best if i took her apart? You mention seals and gaskets, do espresso use special gaskets? Could i use telfon tape?








F9zSlavik (original poster)

#4: Post by F9zSlavik (original poster) »

In order for me to get to the fitting on the bottom, I have to remove the pipe at the top. It's super tight though. Do I use some sort of wd40 or something to remove it without stressing the pipes?

F9zSlavik (original poster)

#5: Post by F9zSlavik (original poster) »

Removed 2 pieces of pipes last night. I can tell that it was leaking trhough one of the threads where the cap nut fastens. Cleaned it, put it back together and bam, hissing went away. Or so I thought. I hear another faint hiss. Not even sure where that one is coming from. Seems to me I have to take her apart, clean it and then put her back together.

Or maybe someone can answer this, is it normal for it to hiss a little? Very faint, almost can't tell the difference between that and the boiler sounds

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another_jim
Team HB

#6: Post by another_jim »

The machine is old, so slight steam leaks at the fitting will be normal, although you need to repair them. However if the hiss is in water lines rather than steam lines, he machine may be running too hot. Usually with machine this old, you will need to take it apart, descale and clean everything to get rid of all the small leaks. An Ellimatic, a very basic machine dating from the 1990s, may not be worth the effort, except as a learning project.
Jim Schulman

F9zSlavik (original poster)

#7: Post by F9zSlavik (original poster) »

So i took your advice, and this is pretty cool I like doing this, I took her apart. I didn't take apart the boiler as that is too risky however I did manage to get the bottom nut off, it did bend the boiler a little but after a little WD40, it did the trip. It had a pretty think layer of something because I could not poke it all the way through with a skinny screw driver. I manager to move or dissolve whatever was blocking it and basically ran citric acid through it and rinse it a bunch of time. Weird hair like things came out, brown transparent things, can't quite explain it. My guess is, water wasn't filling the entire boiler due to contaminants. After doing this and cleaning several pipes, she ran cooler! The hissing persisted. I did manage to clean the area I suspected the leak was coming from and walla, found it, she is leaking from the area where the neck of the group head connect to the boiler. I guess all the years of removing the PF eventually cracked it a little.

She is running strong and it would be a real shame to let her die. I called up someone who does soldering/welding work. He said as long as its copper, it should be fixable!

My ONLY concern is the gasket of the boiler. Obviously I have to open her up, but the gasket that is wedge between the top and bottom part is probably old. Where can I get a replacement gasket? I could just have the dude weld the whole thing shut. Since I can't find any replacement parts, if the heating element dies, then I can truly set her to rest. I tried looking everywhere for a replacement boiler but I can not seem to find one. Any suggestion? in the mean time, going to the welding and see how that works out.

In Mexico, anything is possible lol and for cheap!


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another_jim
Team HB

#8: Post by another_jim »

I hope it works out. You've gotten beyond my competence, and I hope someone experienced in restorations can join in. There is another thread about modfying an Ellimatic that may help.
Jim Schulman

jannus

#9: Post by jannus »

I had to take an ellimatic boiler apart some years ago. Just get a gasket making shop to cut you a teflon circle gasket the same inner- and outer diameter as the current gasket ( I think I used 2mm PTFE), and then drill holes through for the bolts. Works like a charm, and I've even opened it up a few times without any leaks when closing it up again. It's fairly cheap, simple, and works well. Don't be too shy to add the relatively small bit of extra effort.
Good luck!
Jan

F9zSlavik (original poster)

#10: Post by F9zSlavik (original poster) »

Just wanted to give an update. Boiler has been repaired but it started to leak again when I slap on the PF. Group head has a bridge to the boiler. Took it back and he reinforced that area. Should not leak anymore. I will be picking it up tonight. I will do a shot for you guys tonight or tomorrow!
Even with the leaks, this little guy pulled amazing amazing shots!