So my wife and I have a Delonghi EC155 espresso machine that we have used for years. Lately it's been having a lot of trouble pushing the water through the coffee. We can hear the pump pumping, but the water just barely drips out. We end up having to pull it 2 or 3 times to get a full shot (or just wait for the drips to fill up the shot glass).
I opened up this machine once before in the hopes of cleaning it, but found almost everything inside pretty clean and the plumbing is all sealed up. So I'm a little befuddled as to what to do next.
How do I fix my machine so that the shots come out in a single pull? I wonder if my pump just can form enough pressure anymore - can I measure the pressure?
A note on the grounds: We have the grinder set to the finest grind, which comes out like a fine sand. We've had it this way for a long time and not had any problems. We fill the basket to about 1/2 full (it's a double shot basket, and we only need one shot - the single shot basket was fed to the garbage disposal years ago) and tamp. I've been tamping more lightly recently, thinking that the problem was grounds that are too compressed to let the water through.