Here at Prana Chai, we comprise a team of seasoned hospitality industry veterans. With decades of combined cafe and coffeeshop experience, we know the issues that face small coffee business owners.
Ensuring that pricey coffee equipment investments are taken care of by our staff is one of the highest priorities of a small business, and while we often take exceptional care of our espresso machines, our grinders often do their job and are forgotten during the cleaning process. Oils and residue build-up just like they do on other equipment - tainting the taste of the coffee and making the machine work harder than it should. Here are our tips for taking care of your coffee grinders to ensure years of reliable service.
The Daily Grind
Throughout the day, brush coffee grounds from places they collect with a soft-bristled brush. This ensures old ground coffee doesn’t make their way into your brew. Every grinder is different - some allow you to remove the burrs to brush down, others you could use a vacuum or a brush to get to those hard-to-reach places.
No matter what sort of grinder you have, you should always try to remove loose grounds and wipe the machine down as frequently as possible. One step you should add to your daily routine is running grinder cleaning pellets through your burr grinders for 30 seconds.
This is an easy step that helps clean the grinder blades, ensuring each and every cup tastes as fresh as possible. Using a brush alone will not remove the old oils from the burrs. Every machine is different - but many will require servicing on a semi-frequent basis, too.
Your espresso grinders will need to have their blades changed periodically, depending on the level of use. Here’s a rough guideline for how often you should look at replacing your burrs, depending upon the volume of coffee your shop goes through and what machine you have.
Please refer to this great article and list from espressoparts.com that collates manufacturers' recommendations for burr replacement for a number of leading grinders, and walks you through how to replace the burrs yourself.
1-2 kgs OF COFFEE GROUND DAILY = replace burrs every 12 months
2-3 kgs OF COFFEE GROUND DAILY = replace burrs every 6 months
3-6 kgs OF COFFEE GROUND DAILY = replace burrs quarterly