file Cleancaf

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11 years 10 months ago #2914 by cappuccino1
Cleancaf was created by cappuccino1
Hi everyone,

Recently on the web I encountered some sources that say
that Cleancaf which is a descaler and cleaner is not safe to use on an espresso machine. I want to use it on my new month-old Rancilio Silvia. Even though I have just purchased the Cleancaf for $5.95 I don't know for sure now if it is safe to use on my Silvia and I would like to descale my machine as soon as possible but I can switch to something else.
Someone recommended Soli Soli Pol to me ,which is a liquid but I cannot find anywhere on the web proper instructions for its use on an espresso machine.
Anyhow I just want to know if it is safe for me to descale my Silvia with Cleancaf this evening.

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11 years 10 months ago #2915 by colin
Replied by colin on topic Cleancaf
cappuccino1 wrote:

Hi everyone,

Recently on the web I encountered some sources that say
that Cleancaf which is a descaler and cleaner is not safe to use on an espresso machine.


Nonsense. Please cite your sources.

I suggested to you in e-mail that you use good old citric acid (dehydrated lemon juice) -- about 10$ a kilo from many pharmacies and health food stores... enough for the life of the machine...

1 teaspoon in a liter of water.

Why anyone would pay $10 for an ounce of powdered aluminum citrate (or whatever it is...) is beyond me.

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11 years 10 months ago #2917 by Bobby
Replied by Bobby on topic Cleancaf
Whole Latte Love has a good demonstration video on how to descale the Sivlia:

How to descale the Silvia

+1 Colin - CleanCaf is harmless. According, to Jim Schulman's Insanely Long Water FAQ it's just citric or tartaric acid. It's harmless though it may come out of the machine with a greenish tinge due to dissolved copper. In case you don't want to check out the whole FAQ here's the relevant bit:

Descaling Solution
Generally, a flush through descaler uses about .5 to .75 fluid ounces (1 to 1.5 tablespoons, or 8 to 12 grams) of citric or tartaric (grape) acid powder dissolved in 1 liter of water. This is a 2.25% to 3.5% solution, equivalent to 33% to 50% dilute lemon juice. Cleancaf and other coffee manufacturers' descalers use this formula. Theoretically, these amounts will dissolve about 12 to 18 grams of scale per liter, but that would require leaving the solution in for several days; in practice, it is used for an hour or two to dissolve up to 5 grams of scale.

The formula is mild enough to be harmless to espresso machine components, but it will come out of brass or copper machines with a slight greenish tinge. This comes from milligram levels of dissolved copper and is no cause for alarm.

Five pound bags of citric or tartaric acid cost about $10 at home brewers' or soapmakers' supply stores. This is roughly a 20 year supply

Descaling Intervals Know the hardness of the water you're using, and how much you use the machine. Descale when accumulations are between 2.5 and 5 grams. More often is a waste of time, less often may result in scale build up. Check out section 1.7 for instructions on determining your set up's scaling rate.

Single Boiler Machines
For single boiler machines, preventive descaling is no problem, just follow the instructions given by the manufacturer. In general, this involves filling the boiler, letting the solution work for about ten minutes, and replacing it by running it out of the steam wand under pump pressure. This procedure is repeated three to five times, until about a liter of descaler is used up. Then the machine is flushed with water until any taste is gone.

Manufacturer's recommendations differ on whether the brewhead should be flushed or not. This is not surprising. The water's temperature drops and LI rises as it moves from the boiler to the head, so scale won't form there. In scaled machines however, fragments can move from the boiler into the head, fouling the gicleur valve. My guess is that with regular descaling, flushing the head is unnecessary but harmless.

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11 years 10 months ago #2919 by cappuccino1
Replied by cappuccino1 on topic Cleancaf
I have already seen the video by wholelattelove on descaling the Silvia.

Thanks anyways guys.

cappuccino1

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11 years 10 months ago #2921 by colin
Replied by colin on topic Cleancaf
I am going to pick on you cappuccino1:

Pay attention and read the words.

I will break you of the habit of e-mailing
everyone with the same question, trust me.

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  • Setting it straight
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11 years 9 months ago #3003 by Setting it straight
Replied by Setting it straight on topic Cleancaf
While I'm sure it's safe for your coffee machines, Citric acid is NOT dehydrated lemon juice. It is made from fermented forms of a safe type of bacteria, like the cultures in yogurt are made, as this is MUCH cheaper for manufacturers than actually powderizing and selling lemon juice in dehydrated form. When you buy citric acid powder, it isn't from lemons.

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