L'anna water height sensor and possible vacuum valve issues

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Postby bruceb » Mon Sep 22, 2014 8:42 pm

My guess: It's the touchpad.
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Postby dr.chris » Tue Sep 23, 2014 8:57 am

The wife emailed Scott, who sent a nice detailed reply. The gist of which is, as Greenbeen suggested, starting off with checking (and testing) the boiler level probe, checking wiring and then escalating from there.

The touchpad isnt horribly expensive (from what I have seen on european sites) and is simple enough to fit, and I wouldnt mind changing some wiring also. Has to be cheaper than getting an engineer in.

Thanks for the suggestions and I'll update as things develop.
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Postby GreenBean » Tue Sep 23, 2014 5:04 pm

That sounds like a good approach, Chris. I am glad to hear that a new touchpad is not too expensive. As you say that makes it worth trying if the probe and the wiring look to be OK. Bruce has much more experience of these things than I can ever hope to have so I expect he will be proved right in the end :D He usually is :wink:
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Postby dr.chris » Wed Sep 24, 2014 12:11 pm

Well I don't know how this telefixemup thing works but you never know
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Postby CakeBoy » Thu Oct 02, 2014 9:03 am

So sorry for being late in on this. This will sound insane but try the flow meter. We had the same problem and so since has another member and both ended up being the flow meter. We spent ages replacing parts, including the button panel, thinking exactly as Bruce has, before we figured it. To be honest, I think the flow meter was the last thing left to try! Can't guarantee it is the same in your case but they are not expensive so it's worth a go. Think about it, the flow affects both the fill time and what the buttons perceive. My memory is terrible these days, so I can't remember more about it, or unfortunately who the other member was, but even Scott was surprised by what it turned out to be. Good luck Chris :)

Edit: Just found it. The other member contacted last year via PM about selling a machine with a perceived volumetrics fault rather than replacing the keypad and it was clearly the same issue we had experienced a year or two before. A new flow meter sorted it for both he and us previously. I think I am confident now in advising try a flow meter.
Last edited by CakeBoy on Thu Oct 02, 2014 9:24 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby dr.chris » Thu Oct 02, 2014 2:34 pm

Thanks Cakey. That would indeed make sense. I suspect its related to the earlier problems too.

Current situation is that we recently made contact with a localish engineer who in theory is popping around today or tomorrow, who thinks he can determine the problem quickly. The wife is reduced to using an old cafetierre at home and shes not happy!
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Postby CakeBoy » Thu Oct 02, 2014 9:37 pm

I hope it's sorted soon Chris. Our Anna is quite a lady of a certain age these days and many of her parts have been replaced over the years. Fingers crossed for you :)
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Postby dr.chris » Fri Oct 03, 2014 3:07 pm

Do you know - I took out the flowmeter and had a look and there is nothing to it really, just a little plastic thing with blades and a couple of bits of metal to generate a current. If there is a problem I can only suspect that water has somehow got into the circuit which generates the signal

Following non appearance of the first engineer Wife has tracked down an alternate who should be visiting us tomorrow. The Fall back situation is going to be ordering a few things from Scott.

We have had Anna for 5 years now I think. She has been a great addition to the house. And she is easy to work on. I just need to know what I am doing...

(Edit - 1st engineer has got in touch , apologetic about the delay and citing being too busy to have been in touch before. Its a bit late now but his heart is in the right place.)
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Postby CakeBoy » Fri Oct 03, 2014 8:49 pm

Ah, I forgot to mention that, we did the same and the flow meter looked fine, but it wasn't. I think you are right, it's definitely on the circuit side, but if the second engineer doesn't arrive, please just order a flow meter. I am that certain :)
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Postby GreenBean » Sat Oct 04, 2014 8:25 am

bruceb wrote:My guess: It's the touchpad.

CakeBoy wrote:.... please just order a flow meter. I am that certain :)

I am going to hedge my bets here and say that I guess that one of you is wrong and I sincerely hope that one of you is right :wink: I will keep my fingers crossed that one of the engineers turns up and can reproduce the current problem and trace the cause.
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Postby bruceb » Sun Oct 05, 2014 4:32 pm

Oh, I have no problem being wrong! Cakes has had a personal relationship with Anna for years, I've only met her once or twice so my guess was nothing but that. And besides, the flow meter is considerably less expensive than the touchpad, I believe. 8)
Three Francesconi (CMA) espresso machines - Rossi, San Marco, LaCimbali, Faema and 2 Mazzer Major grinders- CoffeeTech Maggionlino, Hottop, Alpenröst and HW Precision roasters.
I decided I needed a bit of a change so I roasted some Monsooned Malabar. That was a change!
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Postby CakeBoy » Sun Oct 05, 2014 6:37 pm

It is a really odd one because the flow meter is the last thing that would appear to be causing it. Yes, you are spot on Bruce, the touchpad is not cheap, as we found out when we went for that first too. Of course, it could be a touchpad fault, they must go wrong after all, but these same symptoms in ours and the subsequent one did end up being the fortunately inexpensive flow meter. Though in Chris' case, it might just be his Anna complaining about the northern water and chillier weather! :)

Hey Chris, have you had to do much major maintenance? Our Anna needed a new pump, heater, heat cut out probe, vac valve, obviously the flow meter, steam wand washer and various other bits from about six years onward. She is good as new though bless her :)
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Postby dr.chris » Mon Oct 06, 2014 8:58 am

New pump. New controller (that was last year) Thats it so far. Pump made a big difference, as you could hear the previous one trying to 'catch' the water and failing. Replacing the controller was a very expensive way of dealing with an inability to register water height in the tank.

2nd engineer came round fiddled with things for and hour and a half and left, basically saying it might be the flowmeter or it might be the relay, but he didnt have those parts with him. He did replace the fan in the flowmeter but not surprisingly that hasnt helped yet. We were not terribly impressed. He knew what he was doing to an extent but wasnt great with Anna. Given that she is quite a generic machine that was a little concerning. He was hoping to sell us a service but that isnt going to happen.

Seriously thinking about chasing up the first engineer and if hes good actually getting a full service done. Not cheap, but once every 5 years isnt the end of the world.
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Postby CakeBoy » Mon Oct 06, 2014 10:10 am

It is surprising how some engineers are. Someone in the trade once told me that few had any engineering qualifications at that time. I have no idea if that is true but I have little reason to doubt it and experiences like yours seem to bear that up. A lot of computer engineers are the same, they know a fair bit but it's not until their fault finding skills are put to the test that it becomes clear just how good they are.

Exactly, the fan in the flow meter has nothing to go wrong. It will be the contacts part of it. Like yours, our flow meter was thoroughly cleaned initially, but we found no difference until it was changed. I think the relay less likely because you are getting a specific one light error. A faulty relay would surely present random lighting of the keypad. The single light error perfectly matches both ours and the subsequent machine's behaviour when suffering flow meter issues :)

Edit: I have just green reminded, yes my memory really is that bad these days, that we also had a new relay between cleaning the old file meter and finally changing it. That might be very relevant in your planning.
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Postby dr.chris » Mon Oct 06, 2014 11:15 am

Yes. I can believe all that in that I really dont think this guy had anything over me beyond experience. Now experience is very important, because I dont know what I am looking for with problems like this (but then there is TMC :) ) but all the plumbing and the basic electrics are straightfoward to deal with, given the right mind (or lack of) and a bit of experience with cars and domestic plumbing and electrics.

One more thing. He was talking about a boiler inspection, which we dont technically need because its a home machine (and given useage, water hardness and giving her a good descale every so often its unlikely to be an issue). But from what I have read I understand that if there is an inspection it should be carried out by someone other than the engineer doing the work
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