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IMS Shower Screen - detaches under water pressure

When flushing (without portafilter) IMS 35 micron shower screen detaches under water force and falls on the tray. I did not notice this happening the first 3-4 weeks of owning this machine. Any way to prevent this? Lube, hammer...?


  • it's possible that the little holes are somehow clogged. If so, the result of the water flush force is that the screen is pushed out.

    Have you recently lubed the bore above the screen? Some of the grease could have leaked into the mesh of the screen.

    Have you tried cleaning the screen with the powder that agressively removes grease, and/or with acetone?
  • hi igor

    you will find people who will take your experience as evidence that the IMS 35 micron screen is a poor choice and that the IMS 200 micron screen is a better choice

    this may be true for pump machines that suck coffee upwards through the screen when the pump turns off, but it is not the case for lever machines

    it is caused by a portion of the screen becoming blocked

    if it occurs when the machine is relatively new it is due to excess silicone grease travelling down and fouling in the screen, which in turn elevates the pressure above the screen and if sufficiently it will blow the screen completely off

    to remedy remove the screen and place it in a small bowl/similar and add a citrus solvent and allow it to soak for a while, agitating the screen in the solvent every few minutes and perhaps using an old disused toothbrush or similar to work the solvent gently into the screen

    if you want to take the old school approach use Acetone

    i dont know of any other products that dissolved silicone grease - it is really difficult to fully remove

    then rinse thoroughly under a fast running cold tap with copious amounts of water

    if the screen is older and you are time poor just replace it - if you are replacing the screen it is common practice to replace the gasket at the same time as these harden with the heat they are exposed to

    the screen will eventually become clogged with coffee tars, but unless you are putting more coffee in the basket than it was designed to carry, such that you end up with coffee pushed up against the shower screen it should take many months, so i dont see it as a particular chore

    the reduction in the water surge into the brew chamber with the 35 micron screen is more than worth the inconvenience of having to clean the screen a couple of times a year

    kind regards

  • That makes sense, it's probably the silicone grease. I soaked it in citric acid for 20-30 min and there was still some left. I'll try leaving it for longer and try acetone if that doesn't work. Now when I hold the basket in my hand and fill it up with water, it barely drops through... but that might be by design.

    I like the IMS screen, it mostly stays clean with 18g of coffee.

  • Screen pop off in action. This is after 1h in acetone.
  • What happens when you use another screen? And another ring around it?
  • hi igor

    watching your video i suspect you have not driven the screen on firmly enough

    in the first step where you use the portafilter with basket removed to drive the screen into place you push the handle around to the necessary angle

    but in the second step where you add the basket back into the portafilter to effectively increase the extent to which you can drive the screen up into the seal groove you only push the portafilter handle slightly to the right of 6 o'clock

    you need to drive the portafilter handle with the basket in as far to the right as you drove it in step one when the basket was not present

    hold the right hand side of the group with your right hand and drive the portafilter handle to the right with your left hand if this helps you to get more purchase

    let me know

    when you finish the bottom of the portafilter seal should be as close to flush with the bottom of the groove of the seal groove that it lies in as possible - perhaps 1mm still hanging down

    if you achieve this and you have cleaned and rinsed the shower screen it should stay in place, unless the seal has become hard and rigid with heat, as frans mentions


  • ps - hold the screen up to a strong light source to check that the holes in the screen are no longer obstructed - if they are there is more gentle work with the toothbrush and acetone to be performed.
  • Frans - I never tried another screen or ring, but will try if I can’t make this screen to stay on. The ring shybe fine though, only couple of months old.

    Reiss- I’ll try your suggestions when I get home. Since it’s brass I didn’t want to push it too hard.
  • Reiss - IMS screen appears clean, light shines through, I left the screen in Acetone for an hour, boiled it in water and citric acid. Thing is, even with all this force wnen putting it on I can take it off with my bare hands using little effort. So, I did what you suggested, I used more force in both steps to the point I was moving the machine, ring almost flush with the piston, perhaps 0.5mm sticking out. I pull the lever but the screen pops off again. Here is the video

    Frans - I tested the stock Londinium screen and it stayed on after 2-3 flushes. I’ll report back if itstarts slipping too. Here’s the vid
  • Thank you for taking the time to make a clip; it makes it easy

    There are only two possible causes of this issue;

    1. The seal has become hard. To test if the deal has hardened try crushing it from opposite sides of the circumference with your forefinger and thumb; if cracks appear on the outer circumference if the seal it needs to be replaced

    2. The screen isn’t clean. This will be the case if the cause is silicone grease as it is translucent. To test water should run through the screen. You can also try touching in the holes in the former from the top side of the screen down with the tip of a needle and I expect you will get silicone grease on the needle tip.

    I think you will need to scrub it with acetone and an old toothbrush.

    There are no other possible causes
  • Just had a thought; please confirm that you have not put silicone grease on the seal or in the seal groove

    Clean the seal and the seal groove with acetone too as it may have been contaminated with loxeal and the ptfe will cause the seal to slide out in the manner you report
  • I have not put any extra silicon grease (don't have any either). I'll do one more acetone soak and scrub when I get to it but for now it is what it is, I can still make coffee. I can't detect any grease on either the seal or the shower screen. I couldn't scrub woven mesh from the inside , so there might be some grease on that side, or the mesh itself is clogged. I need to place an order for a seal replacement set anyway so that way I'll have a chance to see if a new seal or shower screen makes a difference.

    Squeeze test

    Then I poured some water in the basket to test if water would flow through. It barely did but that could be normal.
  • ill make a clip of water flow through a new 35 micron screen, give me an hour please

    it is clear from your clip that your screen is blocked.

    [video width=425 height=344 type=vimeo]296974131
  • We know what it is. Back to scrubbing...
  • Here is an update. I soaked the screen in Acetone for 24 hours and scrubbed after it but that didn't do anything. Could be my that my wife's nail polish acetone is not powerful enough. Water wouldn't run through as it did in Reiss' video. So it was either ordering a new one or trying to burn it with flame.
    I held it over the flame for about 1 minute, noticed some smoke. Not sure if I made any damage with this method but it seems fine, the screen is not popping off at least. I'll report if any issues with the shot flow.

    Water test video

    Water flushing

    Attached files

  • ha! thanks for telling us how the story ended.

    kind regards

  • I am having the same issue with mine... I did clean all the grease off when the machine arrived... flushed a couple of times, clean any grease again. This was all with the stock showerscreen.

    I then I installed the IMS 35 screen... worked fine for a few weeks and during a flush it popped out. Thinking it was grease clogging the screen, I took it out and cleaned everything again. Could not detect any grease... but nonetheless I cleaned everything... even cleaned the surface with alcohol to make sure it was nice a clean... not just a wipe with a cleaning cloth. I then installed a new IMS 35 (I got a couple of spare IMS 35 screen when I bought my machine) .... well... it is doing it again.

    Reading that acetone did nothing for the OP... I do not have high hopes... I will pull out the first IMS 35 that I installed and dip that one in acetone... the one in there now I have in Cafiza...

    Screen floats so obviously it is clogged...

    Anyway, glad I came across this thread. Let me try the acetone route first before playing with fire...
  • No matter what I did with my IMS I couldn't get it unclogged (I assume it was too much grease in the machine from the factory as I never cleaned it) once I switched to the factory shower screen everything has been fine. Not sure if there was perhaps a bad batch of IMS screens but nothing I can do has fixed the clogging on mine. Hope you are able to fix yours!
  • I was able to clean mine with acetone... cleaned the two I had... took the stock unit from storage as well, just in case. But now I have both IMS screen clean and clear...

    But now I know the trick about using fire to burn the silicone grease from the screen...
  • I was able to clean mine with acetone... cleaned the two I had... took the stock unit from storage as well, just in case. But now I have both IMS screen clean and clear...

    But now I know the trick about using fire to burn of the silicone grease...
  • My ims shower screen was clogged. I had tried to clean it to no avail.. I then read the info in the store that said to use a citrus cleaner. I have DeSolve It citrus cleaner. Took only a minute and used a tooth brush to help clean the screen. Rinsed it thoroughly. Perfectly clean and water flows right through the screen.

    Coffee tastes better too.
  • yes, its great stuff. i expect other brands of citrus solvent/degreaser work just as well.
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