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So many switches, so little time

Everything needs to be controlled, so here we take a look at all the various types of switches and how they function
Switches of all types are used around your espresso machine to control different functions, from turning the machine mains on and off, to detecting pressure inside the boiler.

All switches on the machine operate along the simple lines of the light switch in your house, either making a circuit or breaking a circuit, i.e. by allowing or disallowing the flow of electricity from one point to another, in order make some other machine component function.
Whilst there is a great variety of designs, they can be broken down into the following types and areas of operation:

Rocker Switch, Push Button - mainly used for machine on/off and beverage selection.

Rotary Switch - these are larger power handling and used mostly for machine on/off.

Microswitch - generally used for sensing that something has happened.
All switch designs do have a MTBF factor, Mean Time Between Failure, which means the switch is only designed to carry out a certain number of operations before it is expected to malfunction.

Normally the failure presents itself as the contacts inside the switch not making contact and making the circuit, simply fault finding using a meter is used for checking these types of fault.
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