Author Topic: Nespresso style coffee machines and variable volumes  (Read 789 times)

robgul

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Nespresso style coffee machines and variable volumes
« on: April 18, 2020, 08:28:18 am »
As mentioned in another thread last week (problem now solved) I have an Aldi Nespresso-type coffee pod machine.

It delivers what appear to be varying amounts of coffee - as an example:  make one cup using the large cup button then make another using the same button and volume is significantly different??  (That's using the same make and model of pod)   

The variations appear inconsistent across different makes/models of pod.  Machine has been descaled (last week), had a cleaner pod run through it 2 days ago and has been reset to the factory defaults.

Thinking it through:
1  Is the delivery mechanism dictated by time that the pump runs (presumably 2 settings for 1 or 2 cups)
2  Is the delivery mechanism dictated by the volume of liquid the pump processes (this seems unlikely given the isssue)
3  Do different pods make a difference - i.e. the coffee content may be looser/denser which would affect water pass-through.  [We have Aldi #4, 6 & 7 pods (plastic case) and some Lor pods (aluminium case)

You can tell we're on lock-down if I'm down to asking about this!

Ideas/experiences please?  Google suggests it is an issue but doesn't seem to have any conclusions.

Rob

T42

  • Old fool in a hurry
Re: Nespresso style coffee machines and variable volumes
« Reply #1 on: April 18, 2020, 09:12:33 am »
Normally with Nespresso-type machines you can set the extraction time/volume in advance, so there shouldn't be any random variation. The pods should all weigh the same, too, and I don't think the packing density should matter since the machine has a built-in high-pressure filter.
I've dusted all those old bottles and set them up straight.

Jaded

  • The Codfather
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Re: Nespresso style coffee machines and variable volumes
« Reply #2 on: April 18, 2020, 10:15:04 am »
Yes, you can change the time that the water runs for both buttons.

I changed my short button so it doesn’t overflow the little cups I have  ;D
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citoyen

  • Occasionally rides a bike
Re: Nespresso style coffee machines and variable volumes
« Reply #3 on: April 18, 2020, 10:43:16 am »
Ideas/experiences please?

Leaving aside the possibility that it's a fault in the machine, my best guess would be you're not slotting the pods into the machine properly - or at least not in a consistent way.

With my son's nespresso machine, you do have to be careful with the alignment of the pods when you drop them in.
"The future's all yours, you lousy bicycles."

robgul

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Re: Nespresso style coffee machines and variable volumes
« Reply #4 on: April 18, 2020, 12:16:14 pm »
Yes, you can change the time that the water runs for both buttons.

I changed my short button so it doesn’t overflow the little cups I have  ;D

Yes, yes - but the issue is that the amount dispensed isn't constant - first pod fills the cup, making a second cup with a new pod (with same button) issues less coffee.

Rob


Jaded

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Re: Nespresso style coffee machines and variable volumes
« Reply #5 on: April 18, 2020, 12:18:24 pm »
Ah, yes, I see now!

I do get small variations, but not enough to be worrying/annoying, also sometimes the machine takes ages to make the same amount of coffee. Not the issue you have though.
If you don't like your democracy, vote against it.

robgul

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Re: Nespresso style coffee machines and variable volumes
« Reply #6 on: April 18, 2020, 12:19:29 pm »
Ideas/experiences please?

Leaving aside the possibility that it's a fault in the machine, my best guess would be you're not slotting the pods into the machine properly - or at least not in a consistent way.

With my son's nespresso machine, you do have to be careful with the alignment of the pods when you drop them in.

Pods seem to go in consistently - I guess it may just be because it's a cheap £40 machine from Aldi. 

For the first year of its life it only made 2 or 3 cups a day when I had it at the LBS I managed . . . . now, because our main plumbed-in Fracino machine is under lockdown at the factory for servicing, we're using the Aldi machine for in excess of about 8 cups per day (so a temporary issue ... but for how long?)

Rob

Re: Nespresso style coffee machines and variable volumes
« Reply #7 on: April 18, 2020, 12:37:16 pm »
Most electrical gadgets I've bought from Aldi over the years have developed faults or had some sort of issue.  Their milk frother, for example, would burn the milk on an area of the "non-stick" interior and was difficult to clean.  I eventually bought a Lavazza one, which was only a fiver more (on offer) and is far better in every respect.

With these experiences, I went straight for a Nespresso Krups machine rather than the Aldi one.  It's been faultless for 2 years, again was only a few quid more than the Aldi knock-off and came with a starter pack of 20 capsules.

As with cycling gear, these days I'm going down the "buy better - buy once" route  ;)

robgul

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Re: Nespresso style coffee machines and variable volumes
« Reply #8 on: April 18, 2020, 12:47:19 pm »
Most electrical gadgets I've bought from Aldi over the years have developed faults or had some sort of issue.  Their milk frother, for example, would burn the milk on an area of the "non-stick" interior and was difficult to clean.  I eventually bought a Lavazza one, which was only a fiver more (on offer) and is far better in every respect.

With these experiences, I went straight for a Nespresso Krups machine rather than the Aldi one.  It's been faultless for 2 years, again was only a few quid more than the Aldi knock-off and came with a starter pack of 20 capsules.

As with cycling gear, these days I'm going down the "buy better - buy once" route  ;)

I'd agree on your final sentence - the Aldi machine, as I said, was just for the shop with no expectation that it would be pressed into service at home in the absence of the BIG machine.  At least we can get a coffee fix without resorting to the cafetiere/French press even if it is variable :thumbsup:

Rob

fuaran

  • rothair gasta
Re: Nespresso style coffee machines and variable volumes
« Reply #9 on: April 18, 2020, 01:04:37 pm »
It's all just a pointless waste of packaging.

robgul

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Re: Nespresso style coffee machines and variable volumes
« Reply #10 on: April 18, 2020, 01:32:55 pm »
It's all just a pointless waste of packaging.

Yep - pods are not exactly friendly to the environment ... and are a bit of a rip-off for price.    It's just a stopgap for us.

Rob

Re: Nespresso style coffee machines and variable volumes
« Reply #11 on: April 18, 2020, 01:49:31 pm »
One thing to try is running with out a pod in it, and then the hot water heats the cup. Tip that out and then shove a pod in. Wastes water and electricity, but it's something that people do.

Also run it twice without a pod in it to see how much water comes out.

T42

  • Old fool in a hurry
Re: Nespresso style coffee machines and variable volumes
« Reply #12 on: April 18, 2020, 02:33:10 pm »
One thing to try is running with out a pod in it, and then the hot water heats the cup. Tip that out and then shove a pod in. Wastes water and electricity, but it's something that people do.

Not a waste. All coffee machines gunge up with time and a hot rinse cleans them out.
I've dusted all those old bottles and set them up straight.

robgul

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Re: Nespresso style coffee machines and variable volumes
« Reply #13 on: April 18, 2020, 09:56:15 pm »
One thing to try is running with out a pod in it, and then the hot water heats the cup. Tip that out and then shove a pod in. Wastes water and electricity, but it's something that people do.

Also run it twice without a pod in it to see how much water comes out.

Tried running it without a pod, twice for small button and outputs were near identical - ditto large button.

Then ran with pods twice for small cups and outputs identical - dranks them!

So, perhaps the machine had just been having an aberration for the past 4 or 5 days?  I did run the cleaner pod through it today and did the factory reset (which I had done a couple of days ago) again.

(We use a drop of water from the kettle to warm the cups - the main machine when it's here has the cups stored on the top, Costa/Starbucks/Cafe Nero style, to warm them)

Thanks for the thoughts

Rob

Feanor

  • It's mostly downhill from here.
Re: Nespresso style coffee machines and variable volumes
« Reply #14 on: April 19, 2020, 11:38:13 am »
If you look at the exploded diagram of a Nespresso machine ( google it, they all seem to be basically the same ), then you'll see there is a flow meter.
The quantity of coffee dispensed is measured through this; it's not based on a timer.
These can and do fail, and are easily replaceable.
I've not ripped one apart, but I expect it's a simple impeller design, and the impeller becomes sticky and stops rotating freely.

I have a Sage espresso machine here (not Nespresso) whose flowmeter has failed.
It began to intermittently dispense irregular quantities by failing to stop at the required volume.
It now does not stop by itself at all. ( Actually, it eventually does. I think there's a backstop timer to guard against flowmeter failure. )

I've not replaced the flowmeter because I actually prefer being able to manually stop it when I like.

robgul

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Re: Nespresso style coffee machines and variable volumes
« Reply #15 on: April 19, 2020, 02:43:07 pm »
If you look at the exploded diagram of a Nespresso machine ( google it, they all seem to be basically the same ), then you'll see there is a flow meter.
The quantity of coffee dispensed is measured through this; it's not based on a timer.
These can and do fail, and are easily replaceable.
I've not ripped one apart, but I expect it's a simple impeller design, and the impeller becomes sticky and stops rotating freely.

I have a Sage espresso machine here (not Nespresso) whose flowmeter has failed.
It began to intermittently dispense irregular quantities by failing to stop at the required volume.
It now does not stop by itself at all. ( Actually, it eventually does. I think there's a backstop timer to guard against flowmeter failure. )

I've not replaced the flowmeter because I actually prefer being able to manually stop it when I like.

That's interesting with the flow-meter . . . the machine seems OK now so I'll not attempt any major work on it!

Thanks

Rob