Cleaning your house can be a daunting task, especially with little munchkins running around dropping anything and everything, or demanding jobs and deadlines and whatnot. Just the mere thought of having to sweep, vacuum, and then drag along a mop and water bucket afterward is enough to dishearten anyone. Luckily we have 21st-century technology coming to our rescue with these convenient machines called steam cleaners.
Steam cleaners are now the number one most efficient and easy method of cleaning and sanitizing floors. They are there to handle all the extra tasks that your typical vacuum can’t, like for example removing grime from your carpets and rugs or mopping the wet hard floors. Some even come with smaller tools that allow you to clean smaller parts, like bathroom tiles, oven trays, windows, and all your furnishing. An average steam cleaner is able to kill germs easily and remove those stubborn stains without resorting to harsh chemicals.
To help you select a top quality steam cleaner, we have compiled a list of our best steam cleaners down below, so keep reading to get the full description on each product for a more informed choice.
Top 10 Steam Cleaners Of 2020 Reviewed
1. Bissell PowerFresh Pet Steam MopBest Steam Cleaner for Pets
The Bissell PowerFresh Pet Steam Mop is the perfect choice for pet owners. This model allows you to clean muddy footprints and other sticky dried on spots using the built-in Each Scrubber. This steam cleaner also comes with digital controls that allow you to choose between three steam levels. The included Odor Eliminating Fragrance Discs helps you eliminate any pet odors inside the home. The microfiber pads are washable. And the model is able to produce steam in less than a minute. However, the water tank is a bit small which means frequent refills. It doesn’t clean tile grout well. And the cord isn’t long enough.
- Odor Eliminating Fragrance Discs
- Digital controls for varying steam levels
- Washable microfiber pads
- The cord is not long enough
- Small capacity water tank
- Doesn’t clean grout well
2. Shark Steam Pocket Mop (S3501)Best Steam Cleaner for Hardwood Floors
The Shark Steam Pocket Mop makes mopping your floors easy and fun. It features a 20-foot quick-release power cord and 2 washable microfiber pads. Its water tank capacity is 450ml which is adequate enough for cleaning your floors in one go. And your floors dry up pretty quickly. However, you need to use distilled water to prolong the mop’s lifespan. The model requires you to manually pump the mop in order to generate steam. Also, it can’t clean grout.
- 20-foot quick-release power cord
- Large capacity water tank
- Requires distilled water
- Manual pump
- Not for cleaning grout
3. McCulloch MC1275 Heavy-Duty Steam CleanerBest Steam Cleaner for Grout
If you plan to do a lot of steam cleaning, then nothing beats the McCulloch MC1275 Heavy-Duty Steam Cleaner. The large capacity tank (48 ounces) enables you to start cleaning in under 8 minutes and will give you up to 45 minutes of non-stop steaming. The lockable steam trigger ensures your hand won’t be cramping while you do an hour-long steam-cleaning. The 18 accessories that it comes with provide you with incredible versatility. Windows? Check. Grout? Check. Kitchen floor? Check. Plus, the steam hose is 10 feet long which enables you to clean hard-to-reach places. Even better, the model comes with a 2-year hassle-free warranty. However, replacement bristles for the brushes are hard to find. There’s no storage solution for the cord and the hose. Plus, it is a bit heavy.
- Long cord and hose length
- 18 versatile accessories
- Lockable steam trigger
- Replacement bristles are hard to find
- No storage solution for cord and hose
4. Light ‘n’ Easy Multifunctional Steamer S3601Best Steam Cleaner for Clothes
If you’re not sure whether to go for a mop or a handheld steam cleaner, then you should definitely check out the Light ‘n’ Easy Multifunctional Steamer S3601. This steam cleaner is a mop that can be transformed into a handheld steam cleaner for those quick jobs and hard-to-reach places. It even comes with a steam nozzle. You can use it for garment steaming or steam cleaning your sofa. You can use it to steam clean your kitchen faucet or your hardwood floors. The Smart set digital steam control lets you choose between 3 steam levels to customize your cleaning. However, the instructions in the manual are vague which can lead to user error. There is no indicator on the water level of the tank. Plus, the cord is a bit short.
- 2-in-1 steam cleaner
- Smart set digital steam control
- Light and easy to use
- Vague instructions
- No indicator of water level
- Short cord
5. PurSteam Handheld Pressurized Steam CleanerBest Steam Cleaner for Sofa
The PurSteam Handheld Pressurized Steam Cleaner may be small but it’s mighty powerful. This handheld steam cleaner is lightweight and portable. It comes with 9 accessories to enable you to deep clean various areas of your home. For a handheld device, this model comes with a long cord at 9.5 feet. Plus, this comes with a safety lock that prevents you from opening the reservoir until it has cooled down. However, the instructions are poorly written. The reservoir needs frequent refilling. And this is not ideal for cleaning large areas.
- Long cord
- Includes 9 attachments
- Poorly written instructions
- Small capacity water tank
- Not for cleaning large areas
6. Shark Professional Steam Pocket MopBest Steam Cleaner for Tiles
Unlike the Shark Steam Pocket Mop, the Shark Professional Steam Pocket Mop features digital controls. Not only that, but you can also choose between 3 levels of steam to customize your cleaning. Moreover, the mop features technology that allows double-sided cleaning with every pad. The Professional Steam Pocket Mop also comes with two different shaped mop heads and pocket pads – a triangle and a rectangle. Along with swivel steering and the ability of the mop to release steam from all sides of the head, you can easily clean hard-to-reach places such as tight corners, underneath furniture, etc. However, the water tank is a bit small which means you need to refill a bit more frequently. The cord isn’t long enough for some users. And the model doesn’t seem to last more than a year.
- 3 levels of steam
- Double-sided cleaning
- Two different mop head shapes
- Small capacity water tank
- The cord could be longer
- One year lifespan
7. O-Cedar Microfiber Steam MopBest Steam Cleaner for Carpets
The O-Cedar Microfiber Steam Mop is unlike most other mop steam cleaners. First off, it comes with a triangular head which makes it easier to clean tight spaces and corners. It’s extremely lightweight at only 5 lbs. And it comes with a snap-on glider for refreshing carpets and an extra washable microfiber pad. The mop has adjustable steam level settings to allow you to customize your steam cleaning. And the O-Cedar only takes 20 seconds to start steaming which makes setting up the mop quick and easy. However, the cord isn’t very long which requires frequent plugging and unplugging. The pads are thinner than other models’. Also, the water tank has a small capacity.
- Triangular head
- Adjustable steam level settings
- Short cord
- Thin pads
- Small capacity water tank
8. Steamfast SF-370WH Multi-Purpose Steam CleanerBest Steam Cleaner for Curtains
If you want a really powerful steam cleaner for your home, then you should definitely consider the Steamfast SF-370WH Multi-Purpose Steam Cleaner. It is a powerful 1500-watt cleaner that can heat water to over 200º F and a 45-ounce water tank that provides you with continuous steam for up to 45 minutes. It comes with 15 different accessories such as a steam mop so you can easily clean sealed flooring surfaces. And it comes with on-demand controls. You can press the trigger to release the steam and even lock it so you get continuous steam without cramping your hand. However, the cord is a bit short – just 15.4 feet. The squeegee attachment is a bit flimsy. And the unit is quite bulky which can make storing it difficult.
- Locking steam trigger
- Includes 15 different accessories
- Heats water to over 200º F in just 8 minutes
- Short cord
- Squeegee attachment is flimsy
9. Shark Genius Steam MopBest Steam Cleaner for Laminate Floors
The Shark Genius Steam Mop is a more advanced model than the Steam Pocket Mop and the Professional model. Yes, it also comes with 3 steam levels like the Professional which allow you to customize how much steam the mop will produce. But that’s as far as they go in terms of similarity. This particular model uses dual-sided Dirt Grip pads through which steam is released. But for targeted stains or debris in grout lines, you can also get a powerful burst of steam through the steam blaster which is located in front of the mop. Even better, you never have to touch the dirty pads after cleaning because the mop features Touch-Free Technology. A press of a button lets you attach the grip pad to the mop as well as release it straight into a hamper after use. However, the reservoir is only 350ml. The mop is quite expensive. And the mop is a bit heavy and hard to push.
- Dual-sided Dirt Grip pads
- Steam blaster
- Touch-Free Technology
- Small capacity water tank
- Heavy and hard to push
10. Dupray Neat Steam CleanerBest Steam Cleaner for Cars
The Dupray Neat Steam Cleaner doesn’t look like your average canister steam cleaner. For one, the canister portion is a box that is 9.5 inches by 10.5 inches in size which makes it quite compact. Not only that, the canister is quite light and portable with its retractable handle. The tank has a large capacity – 1600 ml or 54 ounces – which lets you steam clean your home for up to 50 minutes. It even has an integrated funnel which makes refilling the tank incredibly easy. The hose is long at 2 meters. The steam cleaner produces the hottest steam at 275°F/135°C which is low in moisture (easier to dry). At this heat, you can be sure that 99.9% of bacteria and viruses won’t survive. Even better, the heat up time is 7 minutes. Plus, you get 18 various accessories. However, the mop head has no swivel which makes it hard to maneuver. The handle gets pretty hot which makes it uncomfortable to use. Also, there is no indicator of the current water level in the tank.
- 18 various accessories
- Super-heated steam at 275°F/135°C
- Large capacity tank
- The mop head has no swivel
- Handle gets hot
- No water level indicator
How to Choose the Best Steam Cleaners: The Ultimate Buying Guide
Steam cleaning is a healthy, eco-friendly, and effective way to clean the surfaces in your home. When used correctly, it penetrates the pores of a surface to force out dirt and other substances that cause stains. Not only that, the steam is able to kill 99.99% of germs and bacteria. If you’re looking for a steam cleaner for your home, you probably already know that not all steam cleaners are made equal. To find out which one is best suited to your cleaning needs, you’ll need to know what factors to consider. Our handy buying guide should help.
How Does Steam Cleaner Work?
As the name suggests, steam cleaners produce steam or vaporized water clean surfaces. To do that, it heats the water past the boiling point. The steam is usually over 200 degrees Fahrenheit. The cleaner then uses pressure to release the steam through the nozzle. The heat of the steam causes embedded dirt to loosen on a surface, enabling you to wipe or scrub the dirt off. Aside from getting rid of dirt, some steam cleaners are hot enough to kill germs, bed bugs, fleas, and even viruses.
Where Can You Use a Steam Cleaner?
There are many areas within your home that can be cleaned by a steam cleaner such as your bathrooms, kitchen, windows, screens, sliding glass doors, and mirrors. You can also use a steam cleaner to unclog drains, clean grout, car detailing, sanitize pet cages, remove wallpaper, and sanitize toys and other baby stuff. Steam cleaners can also be used to clean soft surfaces such as carpets, draperies, upholstery, pet beds, and mattresses.
Take note that steaming is not suitable for all types of surfaces. Those that cannot tolerate moisture such as unsealed concrete or wood, delicate fabrics, unsealed marble, and paper items such as wallpaper cannot be steam-cleaned.
Types of Steam Cleaners
There are three main types of steam cleaners – handheld, canister, and mop steam cleaners.
Handheld Steam Cleaners
These are the smallest type of steam cleaners. A lot of models like the PurSteam Handheld Pressurized Steam Cleaner look similar to a tea kettle due to it’s long, pointed snout. This type is lightweight and portable. It is also quick to heat up. For these reasons, handheld steam cleaners are perfect for small messes or quick cleanup jobs such as cleaning your stove or around your kitchen faucet. They are also ideal for cleaning hard to reach places. Generally, models in this category cost between $25 to $40. They usually come with accessories such as a scraper, a fabric steamer, and a detail brush. Take note that the water inside the cleaner typically only lasts 10 to 20 minutes before you need to refill the tank with water. This is not a model that you use to clean the entire kitchen floor.
Canister Steam Cleaners
These steam cleaners look a lot like canister vacuum cleaners such as the Steamfast SF-370WH Multi-Purpose Steam Cleaner. They feature a canister on wheels, a long hose, and a wide variety of accessories such as a mop head, a detail brush, a scrub, and an angled nozzle. This type of steam cleaner is able to handle a wide range of cleaning tasks inside the home. The steam cleaner is usually easy to maneuver and able to clean hard-to-reach places. The tank usually holds enough water to allow you clean for a full 45 minutes to over an hour before requiring a refill. Plus, these can produce steam in less than 10 minutes.
These steam cleaners can handle large surfaces such as sealed hard floors. They can also be used for car detailing. Like handheld models, these can come with a wide variety of accessories to increase its versatility. Canister steam cleaners usually cost around $100 to $200 though high-end models can go higher than that. One thing to note about this type of steam cleaner is that it does take up space which means you’ll have to find a dedicated storage place for this when not in use.
Mop Steam Cleaners
Steam mops, as this is otherwise called, look a lot like stick vacuums. The Bissell PowerFresh Pet Steam Mop is a good example They are lightweight and easy to use. You can clean all sorts of dirt on your floors including muddy footprints, dried-on food, and even kitchen grease within minutes. Unlike canister steam cleaners, these can only run for 15 to 20 minutes before requiring a refill of water which means it’s not an ideal choice for cleaning large areas. Usually, you’ll get one or two heavy, reusable microfiber pads with your steam mop which “traps” dirt and grime that was loosened by the steam. Aside from the microfiber pads, some models also come with other cleaning attachments such as scrubbers.
Quality top steam cleaners usually cost around $60 to $150. They are quite compact which makes them much easier to store compared to canister steam cleaners. However, these are only suitable for cleaning hard, sealed floors such as linoleum, laminate, and tile.
So, How Much Cleaning do You Need to Do?
When looking for the right steam cleaner, think about what kind of cleaning you are planning to do. For small tasks that only require a few minutes of steam such as cleaning around the bathroom faucet, then an inexpensive handheld steam cleaner is enough. If you have a lot of ground to cover, you’re going to need a canister steam cleaner that won’t require you to constantly refill the reservoir.
How Much Storage Space Do You Have?
Handheld and mop steam cleaners like the Shark Steam Pocket Mop (S3501) are easy to store since they’re pretty compact. Canister steam cleaners, on the other hand, are bigger and require more storage space. In addition, you also have to consider the attachments that are included with the model. Even the cord and extension hose may not have its own storage solution which means you have to consider them when calculating storage space.
What Other Features Should You Consider?
The boiler has to be durable and rust resistant like the boiler of the Dupray Neat Steam Cleaner that has a lifespan of 3 years. Stainless steel or aluminum boilers are best since they won’t be prone to cracking or rust compared to plastic boilers. In addition, the boiler must be continuous-fill which means that you are able to add water as soon as the reservoir is empty without having to wait or the boiler to cool down (which could take as long as 15 to 30 minutes).
Locking Steam Trigger
Holding the trigger to keep the steam coming won’t be so comfortable if you’re cleaning large areas. A locking trigger like what is featured in the McCulloch MC1275 Heavy-Duty Steam Cleaner lets your finger means you won’t have to constantly be pressing the trigger. In addition, you might want a model that has variable settings as this allows you to manually set how much pressure is used to release the steam.
Extension Hose and Nozzle
For canister steam cleaners, you’ll want an extension hose and nozzle that will enable you to clean hard-to-reach areas. You might also want a cord that’s long so you’re more able to move around freely.
Your steam cleaner is only as versatile as the accessories it comes with. For example, soft brushes allow you to clean the walls and grout of appliances while metal bristle brushes are best for cleaning grills. For windows and tiles, you’re going to need a squeegee. The PurSteam Handheld Pressurized Steam Cleaner comes with 9 accessories including an ironing brush for steaming garments and a straight nozzle for cleaning grouts.