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How to Descal a Breville Espresso Machine

How to Descal a Breville Espresso Machine

Cleaning your espresso machine has never been faster and easier

It’s early morning and you can’t wait to have a steamy espresso. You crawl into your kitchen and try to brew a cup, but your machine is acting up. Don’t worry! It probably only needs to land because of the mineral build-up. Descaling extends the life of your machine And It only requires water and a cleaning solution. Here’s a step-by-step tutorial to walk you through this quick and easy process so you can be enjoying your java in no time!

[Edit]things you should know

  • For best results descale with Breville’s solution. Do not use the vinegar solution if your machine has aluminum parts—it can cause irreversible damage!
  • Take out the water tank and pour in the Breville’s descaling solution. Replace the tank and enter ‘Descale’ mode.
  • Press the ‘1-cup’ button to descal the coffee component. Rotate the steam dial left to descal the steam component, then right to descal the hot water component.
  • Repeat until no descaling solution remains, then flush the machine with clean water to remove any remaining solution. Downgrade every 3-6 months to avoid performance issues!


[Edit]descaling your machine

  1. Remove the components of the machine and pour into the descaling solution. First empty the drip tray and water tank, then remove the water filter.[1] Dissolve one packet of Breville’s descaling solution in warm water. Pour this solution into the water tank, then put the tank back into the machine.[2]
    Descale Breville Espresso Machine Step 1.jpg
  2. Enter ‘descent’ mode. With the machine off, simultaneously press and hold the ‘2-Cup’ and ‘Power’ buttons to enter descale mode. The unit will heat up during this process and the power button should flash continuously. [3]
    Descale Breville Espresso Machine Step 2.jpg
    • Your machine is ready for descaling when the ‘1-Cup’ button, ‘Power’ button, ‘Clean/Descale’ indicator, and ‘Hot Water/Steam’ indicator are illuminated.[4]
  3. Remove the coffee component of the machine. To catch the solution, place a 2 liter (68 oz) container under the steam wand. Press the ‘1-Cup’ button to begin descaling the coffee component of the machine – this should take about 25 seconds and the ‘1-Cup’ button should flash continuously.[5]
    Descale Breville Espresso Machine Step 3.jpg
  4. Eliminate the steam and hot water components. Manually rotate the steam dial toward the steam icon – wait approximately 13 seconds for the steam component to descend. Then, turn the Steam dial right toward the water icon – wait about 8 seconds for the water component to drain down.[6]
    Descale Breville Espresso Machine Step 4.jpg
    • Remember to return the steam dial to its original position once you’ve finished descaling the components.
  5. Repeat until no degradable solution remains. At this point, about half of the descaling solution should remain in the water tank. Repeat the previous steps to continue the descaling process until all of the descaling solution has gone through the steam wand.[7]
    Descale Breville Espresso Machine Step 5.jpg
  6. Flush the machine with clean water. Remove the water tank and wash it thoroughly. Fill the tank with cold, fresh water, up to the max line, and reinsert into the machine. Repeat the previous steps with fresh water to make sure there is no residue from the descaling solution.[8]
    Descale Breville Espresso Machine Step 6.jpg
    • Check that there is no odor left from the descaling solution and make sure that the rinse water is not cloudy – it should be clear!
  7. Descale your espresso machine every 3-6 months. It is important to descale your machine every few months to avoid clogging and/or water problems.[9] Some Breville models even have a clean/descale light that illuminates automatically when you need to descale your machine![10]
    Descale Breville Espresso Machine Step 7.jpg
    • If you use your machine in the office (up to 6 times per day), descale your machine every 3 weeks to maintain the quality of your espresso.[11]

[Edit]Alternative Descaling Solutions

  1. Purchase an alternative commercial solution. Although the safest bet is to use Breville’s descaling solution (for warranty purposes), most commercial options are more affordable and just as effective! They come in several options (liquid, powder, and tablet form), so choose the one that best suits your budget and preference.
    Descale Breville Espresso Machine Step 8.jpg
    • It is helpful to look for similar ingredients found in the Breville solution or to buy a substitute from the same manufacturer, such as cafeto,
    • cafetoK’s self-branded descaler is about half the price of Breville’s one.
  2. Try citric acid for a natural alternative. Citric acid is a safe disinfectant found in almost every commercial descaling solution. To make your own solution, mix citric acid with water.[12]
    Descale Breville Espresso Machine Step 9.jpg
    • Unlike vinegar, citric acid cleaning solutions don’t leave a sour smell![13]
    • Because it’s found naturally in fruits, citric acid may not be as effective as the ingredients in commercial descaling solutions—it may take several cycles to completely clean your machine.[14]
  3. Check your machine’s instructions before using vinegar. there is Very Controversy over whether you should clean your espresso machine with vinegar. In general, vinegar is a safe descaling solution, but it’s always best to read your machine’s instructions and/or safety manual. Mix equal parts distilled white vinegar and water for the solution.[15]
    Descale Breville Espresso Machine Step 10.jpg
    • The best way to prevent calcium deposits from building up in your coffee maker is to use only distilled water. If you don’t have distilled water and your coffee machine already has some build-up, you can use vinegar.[16]
    • You can wash and dry all its parts. Then put all its parts together and fill the water tank with half water and half vinegar. Do as many cycles as possible until the tank is empty.[17]
    • You can use vinegar to descale, remove coffee residue, and disinfect your coffee machine.[18]
    • Avoid using vinegar if your machine has an aluminum heating block – the acetic acid in white vinegar can cause potential damage by corroding internal components![19]
    • Flush your machine with clean water 3-4 times to avoid sour taste in your espresso.


  • You can also choose to get off with a Breville And alternative solution. Try descaling with the citric acid solution 2-3 times, then switch to the Breville solution for the next cycle.


  • Check the Breville’s instruction manual to see if using an alternative descaling solution could damage your machine or risk voiding your product warranty.



  1. https://www.breville.com/inspiration/en-us/tutorials/the-barista-express/cleaning-guides/how-to-perform-a-descale
  2. https://youtu.be/Mr3ilRsgzmc?t=23
  3. https://youtu.be/Mr3ilRsgzmc?t=30
  4. https://youtu.be/Mr3ilRsgzmc?t=54
  5. https://youtu.be/Mr3ilRsgzmc?t=50
  6. https://youtu.be/Mr3ilRsgzmc?t=87
  7. https://youtu.be/Mr3ilRsgzmc?t=130
  8. https://www.breville.com/inspiration/en-us/tutorials/the-barista-express/cleaning-guides/how-to-perform-a-descale
  9. https://www.consumerreports.org/coffee-makers/how-to-clean-your-coffee-maker-a9071238280/
  10. https://www.breville.com/inspiration/en-us/tutorials/the-barista-express/cleaning-guides/how-to-perform-a-descale
  11. https://www.liquidline.co.uk/news/a-guide-to-descaling-an-espresso-machine/
  12. https://youtu.be/YUz9a2mVjm4?t=167
  13. https://pubchem.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/compound/Citric-Acid#section=RTECS-Number
  14. https://news.engineering.pitt.edu/when-choosing-cleaners-it-helps-to-know-your-chemistry
  15. https://www.bonappetit.com/story/cleaning-with-vinegar-in-kitchen
  16. [v162085_b01], March 3, 2022.
  17. [v162085_b01], March 3, 2022.
  18. [v162085_b01], March 3, 2022.
  19. https://www.consumerreports.org/cleaning/things-you-should-never-clean-with-vinegar-distilled-white-vinegar-a3336471803/


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