I couldn’t take it anymore. The ECM Giotto at home has been dripping from the around the portafilter for the past little while. The reason being that the filter gasket was old, hard, and cracked.

So, I pick up a new gasket on the way to the office. This sets me about around $13. This is the easy part.

When I get home to attempt the repair, I find that the old gasket doesn’t want to come out.

The instructions that I found on the web are straight forward and shold work for all E61 group head machines:

– Remove the drip tray

– Take a flat screw driver and lever against the inside of the group head and the outside of the shower filter. The shower filter and gasket will drop out. (yeah, right)

– To re-instate the filter and new gasket. Insert the shower into the new gasket ensuring the flat side of the gasket is facing down.

– Take the portafilter and remove the coffee filter. Place the gasket and shower set in the portafilter and load into the group by applying upward pressure and turning, as if loading into the machine normally. Turn the portafilter around so it goes beyond the right angle position. (yeah right, again….)

What you REALLY need to do:

What you really need to do, if the gasket is hard, is to chip out the old one with a small chisel. Once it cracks and a fair sized piece falls out, use a flat screwdriver to pry out the rest of the old cracked bits of rubber until the rest of the gasket is removed.

If you try to do a brute force prying of the shower filter, I’m pretty sure the screw driver will puncture and damange the shower filter.

To replace the gasket, you need to put a tiny bit of dish soap or food grade lubricant on the outside of the gasket to lube it. Next, fit the gasket back into the groove by prying lightly with a flat head screwdriver so that it is seated all the way around. THEN, use the empty portafilter and use it to press the gasket back into the machine.

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3 Responses
  1. Anonymous says:

    Hi Dan,

    I looked up the ECM Giotto Premium Espresso Machine with the E61 brew group. It’s gorgeous!

    I’m still using the La Pavoni Europiccola exclusively, but thinking about buying a machine for entertaining company this winter. In a recent post you mentioned you use the ECM for parties.

    I like the control of the manual pump, but the inconsistency of the machine is frustrating sometimes. I’ve recently been stopping the shots early, because they seem to start perfectly (consistent with God-shot descriptions), but by the end of the pull it’s over-extracting or turning watery and bitter either way..

    Is the ECM more consistent?


  2. renart says:

    The ECM is consistent in that it applies the same pressure everytime vs. a manual lever machine. If you flush the E61 group out before making a shot, the temperature control is good as well.

    I’m not sure that it makes better coffee thought. Not better than shots that I can pull pretty regularly from La Pavoni.

    What does your coffee puck look like when you are done pulling the shot? Is it solid and even? Or, are the water channels that run around or through the puck?

  3. Ray says:

    We have La Pavoni Tipo Bar T2 and would like to know the procedure for adjusting the timer on the automatic 1/2 cup and full cup disposal as ours will only run for about 5 seconds and stops and as we are 2500km from a service agent I need to tackle the problem myself
    Cheers Ray

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