Breville Filter Size Lights Blinking: Here’s An Easy Fix

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If you’re a Breville coffee maker owner, you may have encountered an issue with the filter size indicator light blinking.

This can be frustrating and confusing, especially if you’re unsure what the blinking light means or how to fix it.

In this blog post, we’ll explore the possible reasons why your Breville filter size indicator light is blinking and provide you with some troubleshooting tips to help you get your coffee maker back up and running smoothly.

Whether you’re a coffee aficionado or just someone who enjoys a good cup of joe in the morning, this post will provide you with valuable information to help you get the most out of your Breville coffee maker. So let’s get started!

Why Do The Filter Size Lights Blink On A Breville?

The filter size lights on a Breville machine blink to indicate that there is an issue with the coffee grinder.

If the bean hopper is not correctly locked into position, the lights flash between single and double basket size.

This is a safety feature that prevents coffee brewing when the hopper and top burr are not fully locked.

The grinder has two components, the burr grinder and the hopper of the machine. If the grinder is not locked properly, the filter size lights will flash.

The issue can also be caused by coffee beans blocking the grinder or when the contact pressure switch is not engaged.

In such cases, it is important to troubleshoot the machine by first checking the hopper and top burr to make sure they are fully locked in place.

Ensure the Coffee Grinder In Locked In Correctly

Ensuring that the top burr grinder and hopper are fully locked is the initial step to take when troubleshooting your Breville espresso machine.

However, it is essential to be careful when applying force to avoid damaging any part.

If it still doesn’t lock with a little force, there may be coffee grounds stuck in the grinder or hopper, and it requires cleaning.

It’s important to note that even when not using the coffee grinder, you still need to lock the hopper and coffee grinder for the machine to work properly.

Check The Contact Pressure Switch

To fix an issue with the contact pressure switch on your Barista Express, make sure that the hopper pins are correctly engaging with the switch when you lock it in place.

In some cases, the switch can slip off its locator pins, causing the hopper pins to pass over it without engaging.

This can lead to the machine thinking that the hopper is not properly locked, which can cause operational issues.

The Portafilter Is Not Seated Properly

If the portafilter size doesn’t match the group head or isn’t securely locked in place, the filter size light may start flashing.

If your portafilter is not seated properly on your Breville Barista Express, there are some simple steps you can take to ensure that it is correctly positioned.

Firstly, make sure that the group head is clean and free of any coffee grounds or debris.

Next, align the portafilter handle with the “INSERT” position on the group head. Insert the portafilter into the group head and rotate the handle towards the right until it is firmly locked in place.

If the portafilter still does not seat properly, check for any visible damage or wear on the portafilter or group head.

If the issue persists, it may be best to contact Breville’s customer support for further assistance.

Properly seating the portafilter is essential for ensuring that your machine is functioning correctly and for achieving optimal espresso extraction.

The Filter Basket Might Be Dirty

As you use your espresso machine over time, it is natural for coffee oils and residue to accumulate in the machine and filter basket, which can eventually lead to clogging and other issues.

This can interfere with the machine’s sensors, causing it to malfunction and the filter size light to blink.

In some cases, the light may blink due to excess coffee grounds in the portafilter, which can prevent the machine from operating properly.

To prevent these issues, it is important to regularly clean and maintain your espresso machine.

This includes regularly cleaning the filter basket and portafilter, descaling the machine as necessary, and following the manufacturer’s recommended maintenance schedule.

By keeping your machine clean and well-maintained, you can ensure that it continues to operate effectively and that you can enjoy delicious, high-quality espresso for years to come.

Maintain The Coffee Grinder

To maintain your Breville Barista Express and prevent it from breaking down, it’s essential to keep the coffee grinder clean.

Over time, coffee grounds can get stuck in the grinder, causing it to become clogged and unable to lock in properly.

This issue can result in the machine not functioning properly, and you won’t be able to make a good cup of coffee.

To clean the coffee grinder, start by unplugging the machine and removing the hopper. Use a cleaning brush or a dry, lint-free cloth to remove any coffee grounds and debris from the burrs and the chute.

It’s important to avoid using water to clean the grinder, as it can damage the machine’s electronic components.

Cleaning the grinder regularly is also essential to keep it in good working condition and extend its lifespan.

The grinder is one of the most important components of the Barista Express, and taking care of it will help ensure that you get a perfect cup of coffee every time.

A clean grinder can also help preserve the flavor of your coffee, preventing any stale or off-tasting notes from tainting your brew.

In addition to cleaning the grinder, it’s also essential to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for regular maintenance and cleaning of the Barista Express.

This includes descaling the machine, cleaning the portafilter, and wiping down the exterior.

Regular maintenance and cleaning will keep your machine running smoothly and help you enjoy delicious, barista-quality coffee at home for years to come.

To clean the grinder of your Breville Barista Express, you can follow these simple steps:

  1. Begin by locating the hopper on your machine and unlocking it to empty out any remaining coffee beans. After this, replace the hopper and lock it back in place.
  2. Next, set your grind size to 16, which is the maximum setting, and power the grinder until it is empty.
  3. Pull the wire handle of the upper burr upwards and twist it counterclockwise to unlock and remove it, along with the hopper.
  4. Use the burr brush to clean both the upper and lower burrs, and use the grind outlet brush to clean the outlet.
  5. Once cleaned, match the index marks and bring the upper burr back into a firm position.

The Filter Basket Sensor Might Be Malfunctioning

The filter size light on the Breville Barista Express is an important feature that accurately detects whether the portafilter is properly seated.

However, like any other electronic device, sensors can sometimes malfunction, causing the light to blink unnecessarily.

This can happen even if the portafilter is correctly seated. If you’ve already tried the previous troubleshooting steps and the issue persists, you can try resetting the machine by unplugging it and waiting for a few minutes before plugging it back in.

This simple step can often resolve issues related to malfunctioning sensors. If the blinking persists, it’s recommended to contact Breville’s customer support for further assistance.


The Breville Filter Size Lights Blinking issue can be frustrating, but it is often easy to fix.

By following the steps outlined in this guide, you can quickly identify and resolve the issue.

Remember to keep your machine clean and well-maintained to prevent future problems.

If the issue persists, don’t hesitate to contact Breville’s customer support for further assistance.

With proper care and attention, your Breville Barista Express can continue to make delicious espresso drinks for years to come.


What does filter size mean on Breville Barista Express?

The Breville Barista Express has filter sizes that are determined by the diameter of the portafilter and the filter baskets used for brewing espresso.

The machine comes with a 54mm stainless steel portafilter that works with both dual and single-wall filters to provide full flavor.

To choose between single or double espresso shots, simply press the “Filter Size” button and the machine will dose the appropriate amount of ground coffee into the portafilter during the grinding process.

Can I fix the Breville filter size blinking issue at home, or should I take it to a technician?

Whether you can fix the blinking filter size issue on your Breville machine at home or need to take it for repairs depends on the cause of the problem.

If the light is blinking due to a minor issue, such as not locking the bean hopper into place, you can easily fix it at home.

However, if it’s caused by a malfunctioning sensor or other technical problems, it’s best to have it repaired by a professional technician.

Attempting to fix complex issues on your own can potentially cause more harm to the machine and lead to more costly repairs in the future.

How do I choose a filter size on Breville?

To choose a filter size on a Breville espresso machine, insert the appropriate filter basket (1 cup for a single shot, 2 cups for a double shot), place the portafilter into the grinding cradle, and press the “Filter Size” button to select your desired filter size (single or double).

The machine will dispense the required amount of ground coffee based on the selected filter size.

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Jacob Harris

Jacob is a coffee enthusiast who turned his passion into a career. As the owner and editor of Karma Coffee Cafe, he shares his extensive knowledge and recommendations, captivating fellow coffee lovers.

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