Nespresso OrignalLine meaning of the button lights

The lights in our Nespresso coffee machine are designed to inform us of the machine’s status according to the present situation. However, when there is a combination of steady or flashing lights, it is not so easy to identify what is happening with the coffee maker.

Even though Nespresso evolves its models more and more, the meaning of the lights of its coffee makers has remained practically the same. Here you will find not only the meaning of each light, but we will also discuss in depth the frequency of their flashing and all the combinations that can occur when you turn on the buttons of the machine.

See this article for the meaning of the power button lights on VertuoLine coffee makers

All modes of flashing lights on my classic Nespresso coffee machine

We will begin by explaining the meaning of the flashing lights in the OriginalLine Nespresso coffee makers that have only two buttons for their preparations.

To make things easier for you, we have designed the following table where you can find the machine’s status in the first three columns at any given moment (fourth column). The state of your coffee machine is determined by the number of lights turned on, the state of these lights, and the frequency with which they light up.

LightsStatusFrequencyStatus of the coffee maker
Both lightsOffOff
Both lightsSteady OnReady
Both lightsFlashingFlashing 3x per 2 seconds (fast)Fault
Both lightsFlashingFlashing 1x per second (slow)Warming up
Both lightsFlashingFlashing 3x per 2 seconds (fast)Descaling
Espresso light (lungo light on or off depending on model)FlashingFlashes 1x per second (slow)Brewing espresso
Lungo light (espresso light on or off depending on the model)FlashingFlashes 1x per second (slow)Brewing lungo

Status of your Nespresso coffee machine according to the lights

The lights on the buttons of our Nespresso coffee machine inform us of the machine’s status, and a Nespresso OriginalLine has ten possible statuses in common with the majority of Nespresso coffee machines.

Mode 1: heating

When you turn on your Nespresso coffee maker, it will immediately enter heating mode. In less than 30 seconds, the thermoblock will heat up to 90ºC without exceeding this temperature, which allows you to obtain a coffee brewed at 86ºC.

  • To exit this mode, you must turn off the coffee maker.

Mode 2: self-test

Nespresso machines have a system for thermostat operation (connection and disconnection); it also checks that the thermoblock reaches 90ºC in less than two minutes, and the last five errors are recorded in the coffee maker.

  • The way to exit this state is to turn off the coffee maker.

Mode 3: coffee maker ready

The brewing mode of the coffee maker occurs every time the heating and self-test modes are finished, and the coffee maker enters the “ready mode.” Also, when coffee is finished brewing, exit the “reset mode” or “descaling mode.” The thermoblock remains at 90ºC in this mode.

  • Turn off the coffee maker if you want to exit this mode.

Mode 4: coffee preparation

Every time the espresso or lungo preparation button is pressed, the Nespresso coffee machine automatically enters this coffee preparation mode.

  • Exiting this mode will be very simple. Press the espresso or lungo preparation button again, or wait for the machine to automatically exit this mode when you have finished preparing the coffee.

Mode 5: programming of coffee cup volume

Similar to the previous modes, this mode is given when we hold down the espresso or lungo button to program the amount of coffee we want to obtain (for each button, more than 3 seconds). You can program the volume of your preparations between 10 and 750 ml.

  • For this mode to exist, you must release the button.

Mode 6: descaling

For your Nespresso coffee machine to enter decalcification mode, you must first turn on the machine and wait for it to enter “ready mode.” You must hold down the coffee preparation buttons for 3 seconds, and the decalcification process will start by pressing any button. During this mode, the coffee maker will maintain the thermoblock at 65ºC.

  • If you want to exit the descaling mode, you should not turn off the coffee maker since it will return to the same mode when you turn it on. Just press and hold both buttons for three seconds, and you will immediately exit this mode.

Mode 7: emptying or evaporation

To enter the emptying mode, you must turn off your coffee maker, press and hold the espresso button and turn it on again. The pump will start up, and after 10 seconds, it will stop; the coffee maker will heat the thermoblock to its maximum capacity, 105 ºC, and then disconnect it. After this, the machine will disconnect and be blocked for 10 minutes.

  • Turn off the coffee maker if you want to exit this mode.

Mode 8: reset

If you want your Nespresso coffee machine to enter reset mode, you must turn it off, press and hold the lungo button and turn it on again. The volumes programmed for each type of coffee (40 ml for espresso and 100 ml for lungo) will be reset to the factory settings. In this mode, the lights will turn on for 3 seconds.

  • To exit this mode will not be necessary, as it will automatically go into the self-test mode.

Mode 9: auto shut-off

When the coffee maker has been inactive for a certain period, it will automatically enter this disconnection mode. We are talking about periods of inactivity longer than 9 minutes, but you can change the automatic disconnection time to 30 minutes in the following way:

  1. Turn off the coffee maker and press and hold the espresso button for 3 seconds.
  2. The button will blink indicating the programmed rest time (1 time=9 min / 2 times=30 min / 3 times=off).
  3. Press the espresso button until it flashes at the value you wish to program the off time.

Mode 10: fault

Only if one of the following cases occurs will the machine enter this failure mode:

  1. When the thermostat is not connected.
  2. When there is a short-circuit in the thermostat.
  3. When the thermoblock heats up too slowly.

The fault warning will be displayed through the flashing of the infusion lights. The flashing will occur thrice every two seconds, and the coffee machine will stop operating until the problem is resolved.

Note: The proper functioning of your Nespresso coffee machine can be affected for various reasons. To know the most common faults these machines can suffer and their solutions, check our article on Troubleshooting Nespresso coffee makers.