Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Did your new VII work fine initially but have an in warranty (year one) problem later. Post here for advice. Later report on your fix. Posted photos documenting repairs are encouraged.
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scot
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Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by scot » Wed Mar 19, 2008 4:37 pm

I have had an issue for a long while (say last summer) where randomly if I hit the either of the buttons to pull a shot, I hear the click of the solenoid opening the water flow valve, but the motor doesn't run (water does flow though, however very slowly). Hit the button again to shut it of and again to start it (and maybe repeat) then the motor starts. Flow is fine and everything looks great. This also happens randomly when the boiler needs to refill.

There was another post in here about a similar sounding issue but I the videos have gone down so I can't compare directly.

Any ideas?

Am i up for a new motor? Unfortunately I might have to move this to the out of warrantee section but there is more traffic here for now :(

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Post by JohnB » Wed Mar 19, 2008 10:16 pm

Possibly you have a loose or dirty electrical connection??
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Post by Bushrod » Thu Mar 20, 2008 9:29 am

Hmm. Mine was doing this once in a while. I purchased in Jan 2008. It hasn't done it for a couple weeks though.

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Post by scot » Thu Mar 20, 2008 9:49 am

Wouldn't doubt a dirty connection, but the question is where. The main button is obviously working since the solenoid is opening. Thats where I am a bit confused.

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Post by JohnB » Thu Mar 20, 2008 10:15 am

You'd have to look at a wiring diagram. Have you run the problem by the service guys at CC? Might save you a lot of time.
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Post by bbqnut » Thu Mar 20, 2008 5:41 pm

I had a similar issue, but my pump would always "run", meaning I could hear it, but when it failed, no water would come out.

Turned out to be a faulty pump that had leaked for who knows how long. Jason promptly sent me a new pump, and that was that.

I would get with Jason on email and/or phone, and he will get you taken care of.

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Post by scot » Sat Mar 29, 2008 1:37 pm

I haven't had a chance to call yet, been out of town. Got back and of course tried to pull another shot. Nothing. Crap.

Ten tries later and out came my luscious brown goo :) Yum.

So this morning, based on inspiration (ie turkish coffee) I decided to pull the pump off to see if it was leaking. Easy job, two compression fittings and a metal band later and it was galled in place. A couple taps later and off it popped. Inside looked clean and dry. Spinning the pump by hand and it felt "ok". Plugged in the unit and hit the shot button, motor spun. Did it ten times in a row, spun up every single time.

Over to the sink and poured out the pump, spun it by hand, poured it out. Put water in backwards (and spun backwards of course). Some "stuff" came out. Didn't really look like metal shavings but maybe. VERY small specs of black, flushed it a bunch. Put it back on the machine without water, turned the pump on and it spun no problem. Tried a number of times, yep spins free. So I put the metal band back on and then put on the water. Turned everything up and.. nothing. Doh.. wait the metal band wasn't evenly on so it was actually pushing the pump off center, which would torque the rod from the motor. Replace the band correctly and now it spins each and every time I hit the button.

Did I "fix" it? Not sure, i'll give it a couple days before I come to that conclusion.

Pete

Post by Pete » Wed Apr 16, 2008 8:09 pm

I had a "me too" on this problem. It started last week and got progressively worse over three days. Either single or double shot buttons, and when the pump didn't run to fill the steam boiler both boilers would shut down and I'd get the evil blinking red light with all others off. Thanks to scot for directing me to the pump. I pulled it found no debris in it but found it hard to turn by hand. I dribbled some mineral oil around the shaft and spun it with my portable drill. Five days now with no lock ups.

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Post by bbqnut » Fri Apr 18, 2008 10:44 am

I smell a problem with some Fluid-O-Tech pumps...

:cry:

Niko

Post by Niko » Fri Apr 18, 2008 1:55 pm

There may be a bad batch of apples out there.

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Re:

Post by milnerb1 » Sat Nov 22, 2008 9:50 am

This issue has started happening with my machine. The pump seems to intermittantly delay coming on. It occassionally happens when pulling a shot or when the boiler needs to refill.

Has anybody found a definitive cause for this issue?

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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by Niko » Sat Nov 22, 2008 12:47 pm

You can try removing the pump to see if there's any build up of anything in there.
The pump is much easier to remove than you think, just get a very long philips screwdriver and reach down from the top of the machine to loosen the screw holding the collar around the ring (on the connection holding the pump onto the motor). Of course you'll need to remove the top and front panels but it's really simple and it allows you to take a quick peek. You can move the pump just enough to see what's in there, look for corrosion or any kind of build up.
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scully

Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by scully » Sun Dec 07, 2008 6:17 pm

We just replaced our pump 5 days ago because it wasn't coming on at all, but the motor would spin fine when the old pump was not connected. now, 5 days later, the new pump is sometimes not turning on. did anyone figure out if it's a problem with the type of pump, electrical issue, etc?

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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by Niko » Sun Dec 07, 2008 6:22 pm

Did you get the same exact pump? - Fuid-o-tech, or something like that, people always talk up how good Procon pumps are but I think Fluis-o-Tech owns them. I don't mean this in the slang term "owned" as in better but literally that company owns the former :grin:
Maybe it's a sticking valve that's creating the current problem...
did you try running some cleaning detergent to clean out some possible built up coffee oils in the pipes?
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scully

Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by scully » Sun Dec 07, 2008 6:58 pm

yes, we got the exact same pump (fluid-o-tech) and it worked flawlessly for the first 3 1/2 days. i was thinking of detergent, but had done a straight water backflush a few shots before the problem started happening, so i was a little gunshy about doing anything else. maybe i'll try some cafiza. i was just hoping someone had had a revelation re this subject and just hadn't posted it.

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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by Niko » Sun Dec 07, 2008 8:40 pm

I was having valve problems several months ago that seemed to go away after a massive cafiza session. Of course too much Cafiza can be a bad thing too, just be careful and use the small recommended amount for backflushing. Hopefully this will clear things up. It wouldn't surprise me if it's a minor problem since the machine did sit idle for a long period of time (I assume).
La Spaz VII (with timer) S5 Steam Arm & Passive Pre-Infusion, Mazzer Mini E Type B, MACAP MC4 Doserless,
MACAP Autotamper, 3 Thor tampers, Espro convex & CoffeeLabs tamper.
Scace Device, Alessi steam pitchers, Motta Steam pitcher, etc..

La Spaz S1 S5 Steam Arm w/ progressive preinfusion, Compak K3 Touch Doserless, Espro flat tamp
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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by milnerb1 » Sun Dec 14, 2008 10:06 am

scully wrote:We just replaced our pump 5 days ago because it wasn't coming on at all, but the motor would spin fine when the old pump was not connected. now, 5 days later, the new pump is sometimes not turning on. did anyone figure out if it's a problem with the type of pump, electrical issue, etc?
u

I called Roger at Chriscoffee and he instructed me to remove the brass pump by unscrewing the collar with a phillips.

On my machine, you simply unplug, and take out the front panel. Then reach up from under the machine to unscrew the collar. Once loosened, the brass pump will break free from the motor.

Plug in the machine and engage the grouphead 10 times to make sure that the motor responds every time.

Then try to turn the shaft on the pump. It should be relatively easy to turn with fingers.

If not, then you may need a new pump.

If there is debris in the pump, you may be able to clean it out in the sink.

scully

Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by scully » Tue Dec 16, 2008 8:08 pm

are you having this issue also?
we did all that and bought a new pump, but it is doing it sometimes even with the new pump. i backflushed with cafiza and that sort of helped for a bit. we're resigned to live with it until after the holidays when we can pay someone to take a look :p

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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by chas » Tue Dec 16, 2008 8:37 pm

There's always the possibility that you got a bad pump to replace your original pump with, but that is on the low side probability wise.

What I would try first - assuming you have at least a cheap voltmeter - is to verify when you see the problem that you are getting voltage at the pump motor. If not then you could have a bad wire or connection between the switch and the motor or a bad switch. If you always have voltage at the motor when the pump is not coming on then the next thing to do is disconnect the pump from the motor and test just the motor and ensure that it is not binding.
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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by aptosca » Sun Dec 28, 2008 8:24 pm

Blah. I won/lost this lottery last week. Sounds like exactly what's happening to my early 2007 VII. It started out intermittently but is becoming more frequent.

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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by chas » Sun Dec 28, 2008 8:38 pm

There's always a chance that one of the switches is going bad but this is easy to check since you have both a one-cup and a two cup button. If only one is doing it then that switch is probably going bad. However, if both buttons exhibit intermittent pump turn on, then it is something else.
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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by aptosca » Sun Dec 28, 2008 8:41 pm

Yeah. Don't think it's the switches because I can hear the solenoid click. And it happens, less obviously, when the boiler wants to refill, too, I think. I think I hear the solenoid click in that case too, but don't hear the motor/pump (though I'm less sure because it does that when it wants.)

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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by aptosca » Sun Dec 28, 2008 8:57 pm

Definitely has damp gunk between the pump and the motor. Is that a definitive diagnosis of bad pump?

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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by chas » Mon Dec 29, 2008 10:45 am

Yes, it sounds like you're one of a growing number of V1/V2 owners with a pump seal failure.
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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by JohnB » Mon Dec 29, 2008 12:01 pm

I'm guessing that most if not all of these bearing failure/leaking pumps started out just like mine 12-14 months earlier with minor weeping & could have been fixed in warranty before they got ugly. I think that adding a small section to the website or posting some type of sticky on the forum advising new owners to check this area before the 1 year warranty is up would be a good idea.
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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by aptosca » Mon Dec 29, 2008 12:07 pm

I had a similar idea.

I was also thinking we could have (if we don't already?) something along the lines of a yearly maintenance parts and labor (I was even thinking Chris could package it with a bit a of a discount and/or reduced/free shipping if it doesn't hit $50).

I know I need new water cartridges (and since I only need them once a year, it doesn't seem worth the hassle of going elsewhere, particularly if I need group gaskets, which I do, which I figure I'd get through Chris.) Anything else? I don't actually go through Cafiza fast enough to need a new container of it.

Anything else?

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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by chas » Mon Dec 29, 2008 12:11 pm

Did you have to remove your motor and pump together to be able to separate the two? They change certain design elements from time to time so I am wondering if this has been easier for some folks than it was for me. In my case there is a collar that holds the two together which is secured by a long Phillips screw. Unfortunately the screw head was pointing up and there was no way I could get at it without removing both. However, when I reassembled things, I rotated that collar 180degrees. In the future that should allow me to remove the pump for inspection much more easily.
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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by aptosca » Mon Dec 29, 2008 12:19 pm

I was able to unscrew the collar. It was set at the same orientation you mention but I do have a really stubby screwdriver that I was able to get in there. And I do mean really stubby; I have several of these and only one was stubby enough to get in there with clearance.

My screw was slotted not Philips, though.

I also rotated flipped and rotated the collar when I put it back, making it easier to get at. I haven't replaced the pump yet, but I've reassembled things so I can keep making something while I go through the diagnosis/repair process. It's been intermittent for me, though with increasing frequency. Hasn't happened since I reassembled, though.

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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by chas » Mon Dec 29, 2008 12:39 pm

aptosca wrote: My screw was slotted not Philips, though.
Actually the screw on mine was one of those where you can use either a slotted or a phillips screwdriver.
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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by aptosca » Mon Dec 29, 2008 12:54 pm

Now that you mention it, mine might have been, too. Visibility was pretty limited when I started and now that I think of it, I might not have noticed when I had it out.

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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by JohnB » Mon Dec 29, 2008 1:49 pm

The screw head on mine was facing down so I was easily able to come up from underneath. Yet another advantage of the Supermodel legs! If anyone replaces their pump before I do how about opening it up & posting some pics? Alternatively if you don't want to deal with it mail it to me & I'll do it.
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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by Niko » Mon Dec 29, 2008 2:49 pm

The screw on mine was facing up and it was really easy to access with a long-ass Philips screwdriver.
The pump and area where it meets the motor looked pristine like Chas'
The VII out here is OK so far after two years.
I have yet to check the old S1.
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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by scot » Wed Apr 22, 2009 6:05 pm

After a year and some my pump is still flawless after pulling it and doing my work. I think this is just an issue where they didnt lubricate enough (thats always a problem!) from the factory. Take it apart and put some food safe lubricant in there. Spin it around, put more in, spin it some more, put more in.

Don't keep trying when the motor cant spin, that will eventually burn it out.

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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by JohnB » Wed Apr 22, 2009 10:45 pm

scot wrote:After a year and some my pump is still flawless after pulling it and doing my work. I think this is just an issue where they didnt lubricate enough (thats always a problem!) from the factory. Take it apart and put some food safe lubricant in there. Spin it around, put more in, spin it some more, put more in.

Don't keep trying when the motor cant spin, that will eventually burn it out.
What are you lubing? The pump shaft? Motor bearing?
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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by scot » Thu Apr 23, 2009 9:55 am

the surface between the pump and the housing (basically spray or otherwise put lube in every crevice where movement occurs. Not the shaft where it slides into the motor though, that should remain dry. My guess is that the pump is not being perfectly held by the bearings, or that the bearings themselves are slightly binding up. A bit of extra lubrication on all of the walls in the pump itself overcomes that issue.

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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by JohnB » Thu Apr 23, 2009 10:47 am

So you removed the pump cover & sprayed lube inside where the impellers are??
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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by scot » Thu Apr 23, 2009 11:56 am

Yep, first I cleaned it all out pretty well, finding some "stuff" in there but it didn't solve the problem. Then the second time I pulled it apart I sprayed some food save silicone lubricant in every opening I could find, spun it around, more lube. Spin a bunch more, lube. Repeat for a while. VERY small amounts each time.

I have had no issues since.

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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by shinto » Wed Sep 18, 2013 2:44 pm

some pictures would be nice here, I'm having issues with my pump not coming on to refill the hot water boiler and is hard to turn by hand,If lubing the parts is a solution I would love to know how to do it :grin:
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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by chas » Wed Sep 18, 2013 3:11 pm

It's already been done. You just need to find the right thread.

viewtopic.php?f=28&t=486
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Re: Pump not turning on (sometimes)

Post by shinto » Wed Sep 18, 2013 6:08 pm

Thanks chaz, my pump problem solved by removing the water pressure reducer I recently added , once I removed it the pump started to function as normal.
I added the water pressure reducer to solve a dripping issue I had from the expansion valve (i'm not sure this was solved)
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