I just recently purchased an ECM Technika and have noticed recently that my shots have been fairly inconsistent. A friend suggested that I backflush the machine, but didn't have a chance to explain to me exactly how to do that. Can anyone tell me how to backflush my machine? How often should I do this?

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    Oh, and btw. Congrats on the new coffee machine. Keep it clean and be nice to it :) Commented Jan 27, 2015 at 22:39

2 Answers 2


Backflushing is a fairly straightforward procedure. You only need two things:

The procedure needs repeating a few times (3-4):

  • Install the disc in the portafilter
  • Add in a bit of cleaning detergent.
  • Turn on the coffee machine until you hear the pump start to labour, once this happens turn the pump off, and the hot water with detergent will spray out of your 3-way valve. This is quite likely to cause spraying so try to be careful.

After you've done this, repeat the procedure without detergent to flush the soap suds from the machine.

Normally you would do this about once a month. This is highly dependant on how you feel the machine is doing, but it's definitely recommended that you do this if you use the machine a lot (Some people recommend doing it around every 30th espresso).

After this it is a good idea to run one espresso shot through the machine to clear everything out and not leave any residue.

You can find further details here

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    If you're going to buy / order a backflushing disk, be aware that they are also often called "blind filter" or "backflush basket". Make sure you buy the right size for your machine (58mm in case of the ECM Tecknika, and similar machines with an E61 group head). Commented Feb 15, 2016 at 15:54

Backflush is a very common and is not very big deal I can help you out. but first you must understand that When we backflush we pressure release to blow cleaner up into the brewing components and The cleaner will remove the old coffee oils, dirt and deposit that causes coffee to taste bitter and rancid. Follow these steps

  1. Put a blind filter and add up to 3 g of teaspoon dish wash or espresso cleaning tablets and Lock your portafilter.

  2. Trigger the brewing cycle for 10 seconds and allow the machine to release the pressure. Repeat 5-8 times, depending on how dirty your head is.

  3. Remove portafilter. Activate brew cycle and rinse portafilter in a stream of water. Stop cycle.

  4. Insert blind filter. Lock your portafilter into group head and now clean blind filter without the cleaner and repeat step 2 to rinse and make sure no detergent residue is left.

  5. Make and discard a shot in espresso machine (only for detergent backflush).

  6. Soak filters and the metal of portafilter (avoid submerging plastic handle) for 30 minutes in 1 teaspoon of detergent powder per of hot water.

  7. Rinse with water and put filters back (only for detergent backflush).

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