Urnex Line Overview
We know, we talk about cleaning and maintaining your machine a lot. We know you know there’s a good reason for that! But today we want to take a look at Urnex’ line of cleaning products so you can actually put that knowledge into action. There are certainly other cleaning products you can use out there, but we’re big fans of how simple Urnex makes it to maintain your machine! Let’s take a look at each product.
Dezcal and Biocaf Descaler
The first product we’re taking a look at is Dezcal. This is a simple descaler that breaks down limescale. You probably already know how important descaling your equipment is, but here’s a refresher. As you use your coffee equipment, and this is true of any equipment that contacts water, mineral buildup will occur. This is because water contains minerals! While you can use distilled water, it won’t work in many machines that need mineral content to avoid tripping the water sensor. In other words, the machine might think there’s no water in the tank and refuse to operate if you use distilled water.
Dezcal is a material formulated to break up this limescale buildup and clean out your equipment. This descaler is available in a powder and liquid form, depending on you and your machine’s preference. You can also get Biocaf descaling liquid and powder, which is a little more expensive but made from biodegradable materials, so it’s a bit nicer to the environment. Both are much better than vinegar, which can impart smells and flavors that can be very hard to get rid of. It’s important to note that you should follow your manufacturer guidelines for descaling, as some machines (such as E-61 group machines) should only be descaled by a technician.
Cleaning and Backflushing
Urnex’ general cleaners come in a few different types. There’s their Biocaf powders in a couple of different sizes, and their cleancaf powder. Again, the Biocaf line is a little more expensive, but also fully biodegradable. There’s also their Full Circle espresso machine cleaning tablets and their Cafiza cleaning powder. Both of these are used for backflushing your espresso machine.
To make this a little easier to understand, the Biocaf and Cleancaf cleaning powders break down the oils that build up as you use your drip brewer, Chemex, French press, or other slow brewer. It’s worth using this powder regularly to get the freshest tasting coffee. How regularly is down to use, but it’s worth doing every month or two if you brew a couple of pots or cups per day.
Cafiza and Full Circle are used for espresso machines. Cafiza and Full Circle can both be used to backflush a semi-auto machine, which cleans the brew group. You can also drop Full Circle tablets into your superauto brew group to clean that. Again, how regularly you should do this depends on use, but it’s worth it every week or two for very fresh tasting espresso.
Milk System Cleaner
Steam wands and milk systems can get very gross. In addition to purging your steam wand assembly you should absolutely soak it in one of Urnex’ milk system cleaners every month or so. This will prevent the fats and gunk from milk to build up in your steam wand assembly. On the superatuo side, cleaning regularly with Rinza will keep your milk fresh for every drink. It’s hard to overstate how important this is!
Urnex’ Grindz and Full Circle grinder cleaners do just what you’d expect: Clean your grinder. These tablets are a simple way to break down the oil buildup found on your burrs and in the grind chamber. This is another example of Grindz being a bit more affordable with Full Circle being a little bit more environmentally friendly.
SuperGrindz is a bit different. You may be familiar with the old adage to avoid using oily beans in your superautomatic espresso machine. This, as you may know, is because oily burrs in a superauto can’t be removed for cleaning. While we still recommend against regular use of oily beans, SuperGrindz can at least help extend the life of your superauto’s grinder. With a few tabs in the hopper (as explained in the instructions) you’ll be able to clean out some of that oil buildup in the grind chamber and on the burrs. It’s not a perfect solution or one that will make it totally safe to use those oily beans, but it’s nice to have a cleaning option for these grinders!
So there you have it, a look across Urnex’ products and what they’re used for. We hope this has helped stem some confusion you might have about their lineup! If you’d like to get even more info and hear a really great conversation between myself (Pat) and Maria from Urnex please check out our podcast episode on the subject here or wherever you get your podcasts!