How to Clean Espresso Machine [3 Simple Steps]

Is there anyone who doesn’t like a warm cup of coffee? I think there’s nobody. A small cup of warm brewed coffee can remove all the tiredness of the whole day. However, the best coffee not only depends on the kinds of coffee beans. The cleanliness of your espresso machine also affects your coffee quality.

So, clean your espresso machine on a daily basis. It is not a difficult job.

I clean my espresso machine by myself regularly. And I’ve seen many of you face problems while cleaning your machines.

So, I’ve written this article to share some simple steps on how to clean espresso machine with you.

Now, if you’re thinking about it, go through the article.

Why Should You Clean Your Espresso Machine

how to clean espresso machine

The coffee beans contain a necessary amount of oil. These oils make the rich crema on top of your delicious espresso. But, these oils cling and emulsify behind the water screen of your espresso machine. They create a film on the basket. As time develops the film starts to plug the filter holes of the filter basket and create deposits.

Thus, they can disturb the function of the machine. That is why you should clean your espresso machine.

However, cleaning an espresso machine is not as tough as you suppose. You can clean these impurities in the home quickly by following some simple steps.

Methods on How to Clean Espresso Machine

When you prepare a shot of espresso, the espresso machine gathers layers of espresso oils. So, it is necessary to clean your machine after use.

Besides, it is highly recommended to clean the machine once a week chemically. It’ll dissolve all the built-up espresso debris. Also, to get rid of built-up milk proteins and mineral deposits, descale your espresso machine.

To clean the espresso machine, you will need a few items like –

  1. Espresso machine cleaner
  2. A dishrag and clean kitchen towel
  3. A container deep enough to soak in the portafilter

There are several methods to clean an espresso machine such as –

Method 1: Maintaining the Espresso Machine After Daily Use

Maintaining the Espresso Machine

01. Scrub the Basket and Portafilter: Shift the basket from the portafilter. Then take a nylon brush or scrub pad to displace grounds from the basket and portafilter. Rinse the portafilter and basket using hot water and dry them with a clean kitchen towel.

02. Purify the Gasket: To clean the gasket, enter the nylon brush into the group. Continue moving the brush around each edge to dislodge grounds from the gasket. Then through the group run water to rinse away the remaining waste materials.

03. Clean the Screen and Underside of the Group: Now take a look at the bottom of the group. Find a screw and loosen it with a short screwdriver. Remove the screen from the underside of the group. Clean the debris from every side of the screen by a scrubby pad or nylon brush. After removing the screen, scrub the interior of the group also. Then screw the screen again back in place.

04. Backwash the Espresso Machine: Insert a basket without any hole into the portafilter. Lock the portafilter in the group. Now, turn the group on and run it for twelve seconds approximately. Again, remove the portafilter, empty the water and follow the process once again.

05. Clean the Steam Arm: If you do not clean the machine, milk proteins will build upon the steam arm. Such residue will affect the taste of your drink and clog your machine. However, to prevent this from happening to maintain the following steps

  • Keep a clean rag over the nozzle of the steam wand.
  • Flush out milk proteins and water by turning on the steam wand for a few seconds.
  • When you’ve steamed the milk, wipe down the steam arm.
  • Place a rag over the nozzle and turn on the wand for one or two seconds.

06. Wipe Down the Machine: Espresso making is a messy process. So, when you’re done, wipe down the entire machine with a clean kitchen towel.

Method 2: Deep Clean Your Espresso Machine Once a Week

Deep Cleaning Espresso Machine

1. Prepare the Cleaning Solution: You should clean the espresso machine chemically once in a week. For this, dissolve the machine cleaner into a bowl of fresh water and then clean the espresso machine.

2. Dismount the Machine for Cleaning: Use the prepared cleaning solution to sanitize the machine parts chemically.

  •  Remove the portafilter.
  •  Remove the basket from the portafilter.
  •  Loosen the steam wand.
  •  Remove the screen from the group.

3. Soak the Parts: Insert the espresso machine parts in the cleaning solution. Allow them to soak overnight.

4. Scrub and Rinse: Now remove the parts from the cleaning solution. Scrub the items with a scrubbing pad to remove the espresso residues. Rinse the parts of your espresso machine with warm water.

Method 3: Descaling the Machine

1. Make the Descaling Solution: Clean your espresso machine with a descaling solution. You should do this usually every three to four months. To make the solution, you have to-

  •  Fill up the reservoir with water.
  • Dissolve the descaling solution to the water.
  •  Follow the instructions described on the cleaner.

2. Use the Solution Through the Steam Wand: Turn on the steam wand of your espresso machine. Now keep a jar under the wand and run around one cup solution through the steam wand. Turn off the steam wand at last.

3. Turn Off the Machine: Turn off your espresso machine and rest it for twenty to thirty minutes in the solution. By the time the solution will start working.

4. Apply the Solution to the Steam Wand and Group: In the first place, turn the machine on. Place a bowl or jar under the steam wand. Now approximately, flush ¼ cup solution through the steam wand. Turning off the steam wand, put the pot under the portafilter. Then turn on the group and also run ¼ cup descaling solution through the portafilter.

5. Flush the Espresso Machine with Fresh Water: At first, fill the reservoir with fresh water. Finally, run the water through the portafilter and steam wand.

If you have a coffee maker then you can also read our article about How to Clean a Coffee Maker.

Final Verdict

Keeping the espresso machine clean helps to maintain the quality of your drink. It also extends the machine’s lifetime. So, learn the steps on how to clean espresso machine properly and follow. Purge and wipe off the machine after every brewing session.

I think, from now on, cleaning an espresso machine will not be a hard task for you. Try cleaning your espresso machine today, and you will become an expert one day.

Work according to the steps and also appropriately. Correctly Tamping, using perfect water-to-coffee ratio, all these skills are to be acquired. And acquiring them is a matter of time and practice. Make your first attempt today, and you will become an expert like me any day.


A. I. Moon

A.I. Moon, an experienced SEO Pythonista, spends his days coding and developing web applications to help business owners. A passionate coffee enthusiast, he believes that drinking coffee fuels his creativity and productivity. His day isn't complete without the rich aroma and invigorating warmth of a perfectly brewed cup. This love for coffee inspired him to found EspressoRivo, a platform dedicated to sharing his coffee knowledge and fostering a community of passionate aficionados.

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