Rancilio Silvia Insteon Warmup Timer

I've been upgrading my Rancilio Silvia espresso machine. The PID temperature controller operating instructions recommend a 45 minute warmup period prior to pulling the first coffee shot. This allows the temperature of the group head below the boiler to stabilize, which reduces water heating during the shot, and allows for quicker intervals between shots for the water temperature to restabalize.

I run an Insteon based home automation network, so I decided to install an Insteon plug in on/off module that I had available.

Insteon On/Off Module

The completed installation

These timer modules look quite contemporary
You could also install a mechanical or standalone digital timer. In my case, I wrote a very simple program in my Universal Devices ISY-994i home automation controller to switch on the pre-heat function at 5am, and shut it off at 9am.

ISY 994i Program to shut the Rancilio Silvia Off at 9am Every Morning
If you look at the program folders - you'll note that I have a folder called "Home" - which only allows programs to run when the house is not in vacation mode. If we leave the house for an extended period, we'll set the house on vacation mode which runs automated lighting programs, and also prevents certain programs from running. In this case - the expresso machine will not pre-heat if we're not at home.

ISY 994i Program to shut the Rancilio Silvia On at 5:15am Every Morning

The automated shutoff program will also help prevent the machine from being left on all day, and potentially triggering the 165C overheat trip sensor when the boiler eventually runs out of water. This has happenned to me twice in about 10 years.


In use for two weeks now - it works great and I'm really happy with the upgrade. I make sure the machine is filled with water and the front panel power switch left in the on position at night, with a couple of coffee cups left on the warming tray. I also leave the portafilter in the group head to help keep the heat in the group head. In the morning, I come downstairs, and the boiler temperature has stabalized and the group head is hot and ready for making coffee.

Sources and Links

I hope you found this post useful. Feel free to ask questions in the comments section below. I answer all questions. If you're interested, you can help support this site by using the following links to Amazon.com in the United States. My go-to place in Canada for Insteon automation components is Aartech.ca.


No comments:

Post a Comment