Water from brew head instead of steam wand when priming

Hello,

I’ve acquired a Saeco Rio Vapore (non-branded Starbucks Barista) machine that had been in storage for a few years. I’ve determined that it needs a new brew head gasket, but before spending money on parts I want to check on the one other strange behaviour I’ve noticed.

When attempting to prime the machine as instructed in the manual, turning the steam knob on causes water to come out of the brew head instead of the steam wand. I am able to get water/steam through the steam wand by waiting for the machine to heat up and steaming that way, so it does not appear to be a blockage.

Any ideas? Will continuing to use and “prime” the machine this way cause problems down the line?

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