Fixing a leak in the Illy Francis Francis X7.1 coffee machine

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After few years of duty my Illy Francis Francis X7.1 (yeah two times Francis, they must have had fun) made the circuit breaker trip.

The issue is quickly identified being a leak between the boiler and the input tube (from the pump). From the leak the water drops slowly directly on the electrical contacts of the valve beneath it. (The one valve that injects the water into the capsule)

Overview inside Illy Francis Francis x7.1

Leak Illy Francis Francis x7.1

The Ceme series 55 valves are directly driven by the 230V (European model) so that means it really does not like water on its contacts. Even dry the valve continued broken.

Valve Ceme 55 Illy Francis Francis x7.1

Since those Ceme valves are not that easy to find, I decide to sacrifice the steam jet function and by that I mean to use the second valve in place of the first one.

Obviously I also needed to stop the leak. So a very small hose clamp did the job but I had to tighten the screw quite well otherwise the leak came back.

Solution leak Illy Francis Francis x7.1

Solution leak 2 Illy Francis Francis x7.1

The coffee machine is now running issueless every day for at least six months.

The power electronics do not seem to have suffered. Triacs and other components are like new.

Always handy here are two exploded views of the machine.

Exploded view Overview Illy Francis Francis X7.1.pngExploded view Inside details Illy Francis Francis X7.1


6 responses to “Fixing a leak in the Illy Francis Francis X7.1 coffee machine”

  1. Pero says:

    The valves are different. How did you manage to user the steam valve in place of the main one?

    • admin says:

      Hi, the valves are indeed different but as far as I remember the only difference was the operating temperature range that is higher for the steam valve. Physically they seemed to be equal so I think it is OK to replace a less capable valve by a more capable valve.
      I wouldn’t do the opposite, replacing the steam valve by the coffee valve, it might melt down and be risky.

      • Pero says:

        The valves are physically different. The moving part from the bottom valve doesn’t fit into the steam valve.

        • admin says:

          Yes indeed my comment was incomplete and it is true that the whole valves are different. What I exchanged are the solenoids that drive the actual valve. Those seem to be physically compatible.

  2. Martin K says:

    Thanks for your detailed instructions. Had exactly the same fault, but our RCD saved the valve – all that was needed was a new hose clamp.

  3. Marvin M says:

    Took mine (X7) apart because for every cup I made, about a mug(!) of cold water ran up from its foot, as well as heaps leaking/dripping/streaming from around the ‘steam chamber’.

    Completely disassembled everything, bathed most parts in cream of tartar to dissolve the limescale. The four screws keeping together the ‘steam chamber’ were in variously rusted condition: Two were badly leaking, so corrosion and some anodisation from the various iron and copper elements…

    Put back together (to my surprise, all cables correctly connected), and no more central leaking; but still cold water appearing in the ‘foot’ of the thing brought by the tube.

    Not sure why? Some valve not completely closing? I didn’t get how that black valve works… blackbox, essentially.

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