water overflow s1

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zedex
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water overflow s1

Post by zedex » Fri Dec 07, 2018 3:30 pm

Hi. I have a small water issue. Now this happens maybe once every 2 weeks. When my vivaldi s1 heats up, the steam boiler overfills and leaks out onto the counter. I know its the steam boiler because we have tea in the morning and i use water from the steam boiler. Usually, i fill up 1 cup for tea, and the machine refills the steam boiler. But when it leaks all over the counter, i can fill up 3 cups of water before the boiler starts refilling. I didnt even think 3 cups was possible. After the machine refills i can use the machine for 2 weeks and machine is fine, then again. I find water all over the counter.
So i figure 1 of the water fill sensors is corroded up and overfills. Second question. When it does overfill and creates water all over the counter, where is the water leaking out of? Is there a valve of some type releasing water? Hmmmm.
Thanks.

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chas
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Re: water overflow s1

Post by chas » Fri Dec 07, 2018 6:06 pm

There are 3 ways that water can escape the steam boiler. 1) Loose hose or fitting 2) Vacuum Breaker Valve 3) Pressure Release Valve.

You can probably rule out #1 since that issue would likely leak continually. The VBV, assuming it is working correctly, can only leak before the water comes to a boil. Steam pressure pushes it closed in normal operation. The Pressure Release Valve would cause an explosive leak when the steam boiler pressure got too high.

The most obvious place for a leak is the Vacuum Breaker Valve while the boiler is initially heating. However, this would be the effect and not the cause. The most likely cause is that the water level sensor has either been pushed up and needs to be pushed back down and the bolt holding it tightened or it has become encrusted with minerals and needs to be removed and descaled in white vinegar or citric acid.
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zedex
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Re: water overflow s1

Post by zedex » Sat Dec 08, 2018 8:03 pm

Thank you Chas. :grin:

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chas
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Re: water overflow s1

Post by chas » Sun Dec 09, 2018 6:40 pm

Have you been able to get a handle on your specific issue yet?
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zedex
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Re: water overflow s1

Post by zedex » Thu Jan 10, 2019 5:41 pm

Hi Chas. No not yet as i have a few more questions. I dont want to take the machine apart until i know if i will need specific seals.
So another small issue is the water dispenser dripping. I assume there may be a deposit/foreign object maybe in a solenoid?
So question 1. Will i need parts/seals when i take apart the boiler?
and 2. The dripping water dispenser,will i need parts for that? If so i will order parts first, and then tackle the tear down.
And question 3. Where can i order these parts in the US or Canada?
Thanks
Colin

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chas
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Re: water overflow s1

Post by chas » Fri Jan 11, 2019 1:45 pm

If you're still just trying to track down that leak, you only need to be removing a couple of fittings from the top of the boiler. Putting them back only requires Teflon tape wrapped around the threads. You should only need to remove the top of the boiler if you plan to descale. If you are planning that, there is a round gasket you'll need to order first. Replacing it can be a bear. The gasket sits in a groove in the lid and you'll need to pry and scrape for quite a while to get the groove completely cleaned out and ready for a new gasket.

Steam Boiler Gasket

The hot water issue must be the solenoid valve. Just try removing the valve and flushing out the fitting. Something must be stuck in there preventiing it from closing completely.
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Re: water overflow s1

Post by zedex » Sat Jan 12, 2019 11:46 pm

Thanks Chas.

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Re: water overflow s1

Post by zedex » Sat Jan 26, 2019 3:52 pm

Gaskets are ordered.:) Its leaking daily now which is ok because i can see where the water is coming from. Its dripping directly under the left hand side of the machine where what looks like a drain fitting.When the machine comes on, the machine starts pumping water into the steam boiler and stops, and thats where its overfilling. Then the brew head boiler comes up to temp and power switches over to the steam boiler. Thats where i assume the water is dripping steadily out of the pressure valve. Once the boiler gets to temp the pressure valve closes, no more dripping. So my question Chas is. What is monitoring the water level in the steam boiler? Is it a mechanical sensor inside the boiler like a float in a car or truck fuel tank? And what is stopping the water from continually filling the steam boiler? I am going to find out when i pull it apart but until the gaskets come in i like to see in my head whats going on.
Thanks
Colin

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chas
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Re: water overflow s1

Post by chas » Sat Jan 26, 2019 4:07 pm

There's a water level sensor that sticks down into the top of the boiler. When water hits the end of the sensor, a current flows through the water to the boiler sides which are grounded. The control board detects this current flow, and turns off the pump and the solenoid valve.

Due to the way this works, you can't reliably detect a full boiler when using distilled or pure R.O. water. It may even be problematic if your water has very low mineral content. The newer Dream machines let the user adjust the water level sensitivity but the older machines can't do this.

Do you mean water is leaking out of the drain in the middle, bottom of the boiler? If so there is just a bronze cap over a threaded fitting that is welded into the bottom of the boiler. You may be able to just tighten this cap or, worst case, put some teflon tape around the threads and replace the cap.

Even if you have a slight leak, the pump may come on frequently to try and keep the boiler filled up to the tip of water level sensor, but that alone shouldn't make it overfill.
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Re: water overflow s1

Post by chas » Sat Jan 26, 2019 4:16 pm

BTW: The top of the boiler has an Over Pressure Valve (OPV) and a Vacuum Breaker Valve (VBV). The way you decribe the "Pressure Valve" is the way the Vacuum Breaker Valve is supposed to work. So if you are really talking about the VBV you are OK. And since it doesn't close until the Boiler starts generating steam pressure, if you do have an issue causing a boiler overflow, this is where water is most likely to pour out.

It is normal for the VBV to spit water and steam for up to 30 seconds before it closes.
Labelled S1 Boiler.jpg
Labelled S1 Boiler.jpg (120.01 KiB) Viewed 1152 times
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Re: water overflow s1

Post by zedex » Sat Jan 26, 2019 4:49 pm

Hi. Yes Chas.Im pretty sure the water is coming out of the VBV. Simply because when the machine is heating up there is a steady drip drip drip every second until finally the machine is hot enough and you hear the spitting,steaming ftt fttt ffttt at the VBV. When the spitting stops. No more dripping. So i think the overfill of water is steadily coming out of the VBV until sufficient pressure closes that valve. So am i safe to assume that the water level sensor may be corroded with deposits causing an overfill? Seems plausible. Thanks for that pic BTW.:)

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chas
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Re: water overflow s1

Post by chas » Sat Jan 26, 2019 6:37 pm

You will notice an inner and an outer bolt on the water level sensor. The outer one connects the entire assembly to the boiler. The inner nut cinches a plastic insulated sleeve against the sensor. With time and heat the plastic sleeve shrinks a bit. This can allow the boiler pressure to push the water level sensor up. In this case, you can try just pushing the sensor down and then tighten the inner bolt. If that's not the issue, then loosen the inner bolt so you can pull the sensor out. Hopefully, there is a lot of mineral deposit on the bottom inch or so. If so, soak it in warm white vinegar until the minerals are loose enough to scrub off. Then install it and try again, If it still fails, you probably want to buy a new one.

Steam Boiler Water Level Sensor

The above is $18 plus shipping at CCS. Free shipping if you have other odds and ends you need to get up to $50.
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Re: water overflow s1

Post by chas » Sat Jan 26, 2019 6:41 pm

BTW: If you do end up buying a new one, you'll need to lay it side by side with the old one and cut it to the same length. This sensor is pretty universal across a number of machines. They are made long so they can be cut to the right length. It's just a metal rod; i.e. no wires inside.
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zedex
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Re: water overflow s1

Post by zedex » Sat Jan 26, 2019 8:24 pm

Awesome Chas. Much appreciated. I will post back once i have the machine apart and fixed.

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Re: water overflow s1

Post by bgour » Tue Feb 05, 2019 1:40 pm

I've had this problem too, twice in the ten years I've had my S1. On both occasions the level sensor looked absolutely fine but after a clean and reinstall all was well again. Unfortunately the events also played havoc with my boiler pressure gauge and now it no longer returns to zero.

I see you're in BC. If you're in the lower mainland the water here is very low TDS (as in near zero) and that likely contributes to this problem. I've recently added a calcite remineralization filter to my setup and that's given a small bump to the TDS, hopefully enough to avoid this problem in the future.
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dhbdhb
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Re: water overflow s1

Post by dhbdhb » Mon Feb 18, 2019 5:35 pm

I have this problem too, like ones every two weeks. Lots of posts about the issue on this forum but can't seem to find much about how to resolve it. My machine is NOT grounded maybe that will fix it !? I will try...

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Re: water overflow s1

Post by dhbdhb » Thu Feb 28, 2019 4:36 am

The Dream machine was, like most other appliances delivered with a plug where the 'ground pin' doesnt connect with the ground connection in a Danish socket. Ideally, you cut the cord and install a 3-legged plug that fits your socket on all appliances delivered with this french/german-standard plug. I never bothered on this machine until recently. No problems since.. Weird that the problem occured only after more than a year after purchase but I'll risk it and say the problem is RESOLVED.

zedex
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Re: water overflow s1

Post by zedex » Wed May 22, 2019 4:41 pm

Bgour. Im in the Okanagan Valley.:)

Ok. Got it all apart. That steam boiler gasket is not easy to get out. :) Took about an hour to scrape it out. Holy mackerel i didnt imagine there would be about 1/2 a cup of hard deposits inside and the water sensor was pretty covered as well. All cleaned up ready to go.Took apart the steam solenoid valve and that was pretty deposited too hence the drip drip. All cleaned up. Now the coffee boiler. That big brass castle nut, if i take that nut off, looks like the element will come right out but. Will that need a special gasket because the one i got for the coffee boiler is a large rubber o ring gasket looks like for the other end of the boiler. Not the element end. How does one generally get that brass nut off? Special wrench?
Thanks

zedex
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Re: water overflow s1

Post by zedex » Wed May 22, 2019 10:42 pm

Bad news. Got it all back together. Hooked water back up. Hit power, water started to fill boilers,and then shut off. had to unplug. Hit power again. Water filling up boilers, and water is spewing out of the over pressure valve for some reason. The only thing i took apart was the steam boiler and i only removed the top of boiler. Nothing else. Hmmm. WTF.

Im thinking the level sensor is kaput. Question. The plastic tube that surrounds the level sensor. The plastic hangs past the metal by about 1/2 an inch. Cleaning the sensor i noticed the 1/2 inch of plastic was filled with crud so i cleaned it out. Perhaps that crud was actually allowing the sensor to work. I dunno.

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