A common mistake that home baristas often make is not cleaning their espresso machine frequently enough.
If you use the logic that a cafe making fifty coffees a day should chemically clean their machine once a day, therefore, a home barista making a single coffee a day should clean their machine once every fifty days - you will have problems.
As we have discussed in a previous post, one of the keys to keeping your espresso machine healthy and long-lasting is to prevent coffee oils from building up on your solenoid valve. This build-up happens as coffee residue ages, regardless of how many coffees you make in a day. It’s not so much about how many coffees you make, but how long that residue has been allowed to sit on the valve’s piston.
We recommend any home barista using their machine every day, clean that machine with a chemical tablet no less than twice a week.