How To Maintain Your Espresso Machine: The Basics

Pulling a great shot of espresso means dialing in your grind, figuring out the right ratio, timing your shot- and cleaning your espresso machine.

Though it may be intimidating to start taking things apart, regularly maintaining the components of your espresso machine will keep your coffee tasting great and your home café running smoothly. (Let's estimate you make about 1 - 3 drinks a day with your machine.) 

Why does cleaning make such a big difference in espresso?

Espresso machines build up coffee oils all over the brew path- visible and invisible. With time those oils turn rancid and create off-flavors in your espresso. Even with exceptional beans, the best equipment, a stellar grinder, and a perfect work flow, a dirty machine will completely change the taste of your coffee. 

Additionally, those oils can clog up your basket and screens, slowing down your extractions and throwing off your perfectly timed recipe. Espresso is complicated enough without adding another variable! 

So we’ve put together a series dedicated entirely to maintaining your machine, where we’ll discuss individual components of your espresso machine and the steps needed to take care of them.


Steam Wands

Filter Baskets

Gaskets and Dispersion Screens

Just want someone to tell you when to do everything? Check out our Espresso Machine Maintenance Cheat Sheet which condenses all of this information into a handy chart. 

espresso machine maintenance reference chart