Over the past couple of weeks, we took a look at how much power an espresso machine uses and whether it’s better to leave it on all the time or turn it off when not in use. As a follow up to those videos, I promised to take a look at a timer that can have your machine all heated up and ready to go when you are. Now in a minute I’ll tell you about my favorite. But if you have one you’re using, use those comments and tell everyone about your experience.
So the criteria I used to select my timer:
First, old school timers were out. I wanted one that allowed me to control my machine from anywhere. You know, so I could turn it on when away from the office and it would be ready for me when I got there. It also had to run multiple schedules in a day, with schedules that were adjustable by days of the week. I wanted a timer that's widely available and made by a well known brand. It had to be rated to handle the power requirements of a typical prosumer level dual boiler machine. I wanted one that worked with both android and iOS devices as well as systems like google home and assistant and amazon echo. And finally it had to be really easy to use and reasonably priced.
Wemo Switch by Belkin
The winner for me was the Wemo switch from Belkin. I’ve been using it with my Profitec Pro 700 for about a week now and could not be happier. I have it turn on my machine about an hour before I’m ready to use it in the morning and then turn it off a few hours later.
Setup was straightforward. Downloaded the free Wemo app to my phone, plugged in the switch and selected the switch’s temporary WiFi network on my phone
Open the Wemo app where you can take a picture of the device if you want and give it a name. after that enter the password for the WiFi network and that’s pretty much it.
Within the app you can turn the machine on or off from anywhere you have a WiFi or cellular connection. Tap the Rules icon and you can setup multiple schedules by time and day of the week.
In my example I have it set to turn on weekdays from 6 to 8:30am and weekends from 7 to 10am.
If you turn the machine on manually through the app or button on the switch, you can use an auto-off timer to automatically turn it off after a certain amount of time. One thing I was not able to do was enable the auto off timer when I had a schedule enabled.
So what did I Iike about the switch? Well It’s a well know brand and seems to be the most popular WiFi switch available. The setup and app were very easy to use. There’s the instructions that came in the box and that’s really all you need to get started, short of the password for your home WiFi network. But if you want more info it’s all easily accessible in the app.
There’s a manual switch on the outlet so you can turn it on without using a device if you want to. I was pleasantly surprised to find that when turned on manually, it still followed the auto turn off rule I had set in the app. And even cooler, if your WiFi network goes down the switch still follows any enabled schedules or auto-off rules. In my research there was some user confusion as to whether the switch would still work without WiFi, but in my testing it did even if there was no power to the WiFi network. It still turned the switch on and off at scheduled times.
Now one word of caution: there are some machines out there that may exceed the 15 amp, 1800 watt power rating of the switch. So if you’re unsure of the power requirements of your machine, I’d advise consulting a professional before using a switch like this.
That's the Wemo WiFi switch. It’s widely available for about 35 to 40 bucks online or at most home stores. Again, if you’ve got some comments leave them below. Thanks for reading and be sure to come back soon for more of the good stuff on everything coffee brought to you by Whole Latte Love.