Best Steam Generator Irons of 2020

Updated
Categories Ironing
These picks know how to let off steam.

If you ever hear someone say they love ironing, they’re probably lying. Or maybe, they just have a steam generator iron.

These handy irons are our top choice when it comes to laundry day. The amazing power makes it easier to remove creases and wrinkles. It will speed up your ironing, making it easier to tackle that pile of laundry quickly.

We’ve put together a list of the best steam generator irons that will change laundry day forever.

Table of Contents

    What is a Steam Generator Iron?

    If you’ve never heard of a steam generator iron, prepare for your life to be changed. You’re probably familiar with steam irons, which have the ability to produce steam and spray water. These typically make it much easier to get wrinkles out, but steam generator irons go a few steps further.

    Steam Iron vs Steam Generator

    A steam iron is known for its internal water reservoir which usually has a capacity of about ¼ of a liter.

    The water is boiled to produce a good amount of steam. This is wonderful for dampening the fabric, helping you to tackle creases and wrinkles. But if you’ve used a steam iron, you’ll be familiar with the low steam pressure and the need to constantly refill the reservoir.

    A steam generator iron, on the other hand, is connected to a rubber hose. This means the water tank and heating element are stored separately. The water tank averages at about 1.5 liters. This means you can do six times as much ironing before needing to refill the reservoir!

    There are also big differences when it comes to the volume of steam. A good steam iron usually produces around 40 grams of steam per minute.

    A steam generator iron, on the other hand, can produce a higher constant steam volume. The ones we recommend average about 120 grams per minute. The steam generator iron is more than doubly as effective as a normal steam iron!

    When it comes to steam boosting, the figures are even more interesting. A good steam iron from Amazon will give you about 150 grams per minute (1). Meanwhile, the steam generator irons we recommend can do up to 500 grams per minute.

    Steam generators also pump out steam at higher pressures. On average, our top steam generator recommendations have 4.5 bars of pressure. So if you need extra help tackling wrinkles, choose one of these top steam generator irons.

    Pros and Cons of a Steam Generator Iron

    There are some pros and cons of a steam generator iron to consider before buying.

    PROS:
    • The hand unit is lighter because it doesn’t have a water reservoir.
    • Quicker ironing time.
    • Large volumes of high-pressure steam.
    • Effective on stubborn creases.
    • Water reservoir needs to be refilled less.
    • With some fabrics, you only need to iron one side.
    CONS:
    • It can take up to three minutes to heat up.
    • More expensive.
    • The base unit is bulky.
    • You might need a specialised ironing board.
    • The hose can be annoying for some.
    • The noise from the water tank and heating can be loud.

    How to Choose a Steam Generator Iron

    When choosing your steam generator iron, there are some things to look out for.

    Pressurized or Non-Pressurized

    There are two types of steam generator irons: pressurized and non-pressurized.

    Pressurized ones have boilers which push the steam out at a higher pressure. This penetrates deep into the fabric, perfect for stubborn creases. The pressure level is measured in bars, so have a look at the specifications to see the bar measure. It generally ranges from five to eight.

    Non-pressurized steam generator irons are similar to steam irons in their function. The main difference is that you get a much higher steam output.

    So if you want the most effective steam generator iron, we recommend going for a pressurized model.

    Tank Capacity

    Even though steam generator irons have a typically larger water tank than steam irons, the size still varies. If you do huge amounts of laundry at once, consider choosing one with a larger water tank. This will save you trips to and from the sink.

    Weight

    We’ve mentioned that these irons are lighter than steam irons, but the added pieces can still be quite bulky. Do you plan to travel often with your steam generator iron? Then check the weight to make sure it’s suitable for your needs.

    Temperature Control

    Some people don’t mind if they can’t choose the temperature. And some models we recommend have automatic temperature control, so you don’t have to decide. But if you like to change the temperature depending on the fabrics, look for one with manual temperature control.

    Ironing Time

    If you’re doing huge batches of ironing, we recommend choosing a model with a high ironing time. We know how annoying it can be to run back and forth from the tap with a regular steam iron.

    Thankfully, most steam generator irons have a higher ironing time, but definitely look at the specs before deciding.


    The Best Steam Generator Irons of 2020

    Finally, the moment you’ve all been waiting for. We spend hours researching the most functional and best reviewed products on the market — just for you. These are our recommendations for the best steam generator irons!

    1. Rowenta 400-Holes Compact Steam Station

    Best Lightweight Steam Generator Iron

    Rowenta 400-Holes, Green DG7530 Compact Steam Station 1800-Watt, Advanced 40-Oz Water Capacity
    Check Price

    The entire weight of a steam generator iron will never be super light. Because of their external water tank, these are bulky items. But the Rowenta 400-Holes Compact Steam Station is a good solution.

    This iron is compact but powerful. It has 400 microsteam holes. This ensures an even distribution of steam and precision on smaller areas, like hems and collars.

    It has up to three times more steam than a regular old iron. The steam output is 120 grams per minute. So if you want to save time on ironing, this steam generator iron will do the trick. Plus, it’s lightweight, so you won’t get as tired out as you normally do.

    The water tank allows for 90 minutes of continuous ironing before needing to refill the tank. It’s also removable, so you don’t need to shut down the whole ironing system to refill it.

    This is also great for professionals, because you can use the handheld iron to do vertical steaming. It’s great for curtains, blankets, mattresses, pet beds and much more.

    PROS:
    • 400 microsteam holes.
    • Lightweight.
    • 90 minutes of ironing.
    • It has an eco-mode.
    • You can use regular tap water.
    CONS:
    • Leaks water from time to time.

    Additional Specs

    Tank Capacity1.2 liters
    Ironing Time90 minutes
    Steam Pressure5 bars
    Temperature ControlManual
    Weight9.3 pounds

    2. Rowenta DG8520 Perfect Steam

    Best Steam Generator Iron for Hard Water

    Rowenta DG8520 Perfect Steam 1800-Watt Eco Energy Steam Iron Station Stainless Steel Soleplate, 400-Hole, Purple
    Check Price

    If you live in a hard water area, the Rowenta DG8520 Perfect Steam is a great choice. That’s because it has a unique anti-scale function. The “calc away-system” automatically collects calc. It tells you when the unit needs emptying so you don’t risk ruining your iron.

    The 400 holes allow for incredible steam power which gets out even the most stubborn of creases and wrinkles. This iron will leave you with smooth and crisp clothes. The steam is a continuous 80 grams per minute, making ironing fast and easy.

    The Rowenta DG8520 has an amazing control panel. Here, you can find the eco button, the Calc Away indicator, the water tank refill indicator and the restart button. This steam generator iron is user-friendly and easy to use.

    PROS:
    • Limescale protection.
    • 400 steam holes.
    • Amazing control panel.
    CONS:
    • Prone to leaking.

    Additional Specs

    Tank Capacity1.4 liters
    Ironing Time90 minutes
    Steam Pressure5 bars
    Temperature ControlManual
    Weight12.2 pounds

    3. Dupray SteamIron Steam Generator Iron

    Best Steam Generator Iron Sewing And Quilting

    Dupray SteamIron Steam Generator Iron
    Check Price

    If you love sewing and quilting, you’ll know the struggles of finding a good iron. For this fun hobby, you need an iron that can get hot and produces a lot of steam. You need something that is going to zap away those creases and wrinkles effectively. Therefore, there’s no better choice than a steam generator iron — they’re the kings of steam!

    We recommend the Dupray SteamIron for your quilting and sewing needs. This amazing European iron produces three times more steam than a regular iron. It produces up to 120 grams of steam per minute. This will help to cut down your ironing time and give you consistent results for the most stubborn of creases.

    Another big reason to choose this one is because of the temperature control. You’ll want to be able to adjust the temperature depending on the fabric. With this iron, you can reach heights of 320°F to ensure speed and efficiency.

    PROS:
    • High steam output.
    • Temperature control.
    • Comfortable cork handle.
    • Anti-drip soleplate.
    CONS:
    • No water gauge.
    • Need to wait until cool to refill water.

    Additional Specs

    Tank Capacity1 liter
    Ironing Time1 hour
    Steam Pressure3.5 bars
    Temperature ControlManual
    Weight11 pounds

    4. ABOX Garment Handheld Steamer

    Best Steam Generator Iron for Travelling

    ABOX Garment Steamer, Steamer for Clothes, 1300W Steam Iron, Handheld Steamer with Removable Water Tank, Travel Steamer with 40s Fast Preheating
    Check Price

    If you move around a lot for work or leisure, you need a steam generator iron for traveling. Well the ABOX handheld garment steamer is one to consider.

    The ABOX is a 4 in 1 tool. It can do flat and vertical ironing, steam ironing, and dry ironing. This product can cover all your ironing needs! Plus, the powerful steam output works on stubborn creases while it sanitizes clothes, too.

    Unlike some of the other steam generator irons, the ABOX heats up in only 40 seconds! However, the water tank is quite small and only allows for seven minutes of ironing before it needs to be refilled. But the size of this iron does make it perfect for travelling — pop it in your suitcase and off you go!

    The final reason we love the ABOX is because it has a ceramic soleplate and thermostatic technology. This is so that the iron doesn’t burn or ruin your clothes, even your delicates.

    PROS:
    • Lightweight.
    • Suitable for any fabric.
    • 4 in 1 iron.
    • Sanitizes and de-wrinkles.
    CONS:
    • Small water tank.
    • Not as effective as other steam generator irons.

    Additional Specs

    Tank Capacity100 ml
    Ironing Time7 minutes
    Steam PressureN/A
    Temperature ControlNone
    Weight1.4 pounds

    5. NAHANCO DG5030 Rowenta's Professional Steam Iron

    Best Compact Steam Generator Iron

    NAHANCO DG5030 Rowenta's Professional Steam Iron Station, High Power Vertical Steam Output, Compact (Pack of 1 Iron)
    Check Price

    The NAHANCO steam generator iron is about as compact as they come. If you’re tight on cupboard space, this one will do its best to fit in a small area without taking up too much room. It does have a large water tank of 1.2 liters but it celebrates a more compact design.

    In terms of ironing, you’re going to get awesome results with the NAHANCO DG5030. It has a high pressure steam generator at a whopping four bars. If you struggle with stubborn wrinkles, this iron is one to consider.

    We also love this one because of how it handles thick fabrics. The 120 grams per minute of steam helps with thicker fabrics like jackets and jeans. Say goodbye to huge creases and never fading wrinkles!

    We love that this product has a built-in storage for the cord and a locking system for easy portability. This makes it compact and easy to store. Plus, you’ll get 90 minutes of ironing time with one refill.

    PROS:
    • Compact design.
    • High-pressure steam generator.
    • Good for thick fabrics.
    • 90 minutes ironing time.
    CONS:
    • Auto shut-down mode is too fast.

    Additional Specs

    Tank Capacity1.2 liters
    Ironing Time90 minutes
    Steam Pressure4 bars
    Temperature ControlManual
    Weight11.4 pounds

    6. Philips PerfectCare Elite GC9650

    Best For Fast Ironing

    Learn More

    The Philips PerfectCare Elite is the most powerful for the fastest ironing. It has 7.5 bars pressure and up to 500 grams of steam boost, which allows for the most effective ironing.

    The large water tank (1.8 liters) is detachable, too. You can refill any time without stopping the iron. 1.8 liters generally allows two hours of ironing without refilling. Amazing!

    The OptimalTEMP technology means that you don’t have to play around with temperature settings. No more waiting for the temperature to change between fabrics. No more pre-sorting clothes by fabric.

    Now, you can iron all fabrics, going from jeans to silk, with the guarantee of no burning. This is because of the perfect combination of temperature and continuous steam.

    PROS:
    • Easy to use.
    • OptimalTEMP technology.
    • High-pressure steam.
    • Two hour ironing time between refills.
    CONS:
    • Noisy.
    • Larger ironing board required.

    Additional Specs

    Tank Capacity1.8 liters
    Ironing Time2 hours
    Steam Pressure7.5 bar
    Temperature ControlAutomatic
    Weight11.2 pounds

    7. Laurastar Lift Steam Iron

    Best Handheld Steam Generator Iron

    Laurastar Lift Steam Iron, Pure White
    Check Price

    All steam generator irons have a handheld attachment, but the Laurastar Lift Steam Iron goes the extra mile. With this iron, the base is handheld, too. This makes it simple to lift, move around and carry from place to place.

    This steam generator comes with amazing bonus features. It ensures care of all textiles, so it’s a great iron for every fabric. It also eliminates creases in a single movement, so you don’t need to constantly go over your clothes.

    We love that this comes with a heat resistant iron mat. You can lay your iron down on it while it’s still hot in case you need to go to another room for a minute.

    The Swiss technology of this iron concentrates on de-wrinkling fabrics while also killing 99.99% of bacteria and 100% of dust mites. Consider this iron if you’re looking for one that’s effective and hygienic. Plus, it works 15 times faster than other steam generator irons.

    PROS:
    • Handheld base.
    • 15 times faster.
    • Kills bacteria and dust mites.
    • Works on all fabrics.
    CONS:
    • Noisy.
    • Heavy base.

    Additional Specs

    Tank Capacity1.1 liters
    Ironing Time1 hour
    Steam Pressure3.5 bars
    Temperature ControlManual
    Weight12 pounds

    8. Reliable 120IS Maven Steam Iron

    Best Budget Steam Generator Iron

    Reliable 120IS Maven Steam Iron - 1500W Ironing Station with Ceramic Soleplate, Iron Lock for Easy Carry, 1 LTR Removable Water Tank and Auto Shut-Off, Digital Display, Continuous Home Steam Iron
    Check Price

    Steam generator irons aren’t easy on the bank account, we know. They’re great investments for people who do a lot of ironing on all types of clothes. But we have found a great product that is budget-friendly: the Reliable 120IS Maven Steam Iron.

    This iron has a one-liter water tank, six bars of pressure and great steaming capability. The filter needs changing quite often and might end up adding to the cost of the iron. Nonetheless, the product itself works great.

    The Reliable 120IS also has a pro detail tip. This helps you iron hard to reach places, like the tiny space between small buttons.

    This steam generator iron also values safety features. It has an auto shut-off function which registers after 10 minutes of no use. Plus, the iron lock makes it easy to move from place to place without dropping the parts.

    PROS:
    • Budget-friendly.
    • Pro detail tip.
    • High pressure.
    • Auto shut-off.
    CONS:
    • Filter needs replaced often.
    • Expensive replacement parts.

    Additional Specs

    Tank Capacity1 liters
    Ironing Time1 hour
    Steam Pressure6 bars
    Temperature ControlManual
    Weight9.12 pounds

    9. Reliable Professional Iron Station

    Best Professional-Grade Steam Generator Iron

    Reliable Professional Iron Station, .66 Gallon Water Capacity, 1800W (Boiler and Iron), 50 PSI, Stainless Steel Tank, Coper Heating Element, Aluminium Soleplate, Pressure Gauge, 7' Hose Made In Italy
    Check Price

    Looking for a professional-grade steam generator iron? The Reliable Professional Iron Station is the one!

    This is the #1 choice for professionals. The Reliable Professional Ironing Station excels at providing quality, dry, pressurized steam. If you’re after a crisp and clean finish for your clothes, this iron does the job. It softens the fabric fibers quicker from the heat of the iron.

    This iron comes with a comfortable cork handle to make the ironing easy and durable. The hose is also seven feet long, so you can keep the tank on the floor while you do the ironing. It doesn’t need to weigh down your ironing board.

    We love that this amazing iron has four safety systems. These include a pressure switch probe, a safety thermostat, a safety cap with a valve, and a low water indicator.

    PROS:
    • Lightweight handheld part.
    • Professional.
    • Comfortable cork handle.
    • Pressurized dry steam.
    CONS:
    • Heavy tank.
    • No visible water gauge.

    Additional Specs

    Tank Capacity3 liters
    Ironing TimeUp to 3 hours
    Steam Pressure3.5 bars
    Temperature ControlNone
    Weight18.5 pounds

    10. Rowenta All in One Iron and Steamer

    Best All in One Steam Generator Iron

    Rowenta QR1020 IXEO All in One Iron and Steamer Solution with Three Position Smart Board, Black
    Check Price

    It can be frustrating to possibly have to get a larger ironing board just to suit your steam generator iron. But with the Rowenta All in One Iron and Steamer, you don’t have to. This classy product comes with an iron, steamer and ironing board.

    Want more? It comes in white, or a black and gold model, which we love!

    With this product, you can steam vertically by hanging the clothes on the hanger. You can iron or steam horizontally, when you swivel the board to a flat position. Or you can even iron or steam at an angle if you prefer. The choice is yours.

    The Rowenta All in One is perfect for all fabrics. We love it for curtains, furniture and mattresses. You can easily transport this steam generator iron from room to room using its built-in wheels.

    The height is adjustable. The steamer sanitizes 99.9% of odor-causing bacteria. And lastly, the Turbo Steam Technology removes wrinkles and creases quickly and easily.

    PROS:
    • Includes ironing board and hanger.
    • Vertical, horizontal or angled ironing.
    • Safe for all fabrics.
    • Sanitizes 99.9% of odor-causing bacteria.
    CONS:
    • No auto shut-off.
    • Hanger gets knocked off easily.

    Additional Specs

    Tank Capacity1 liter
    Ironing Time1 hour
    Steam Pressure5 bars
    Temperature ControlNone
    Weight32.5 pounds

    Steam Generator Iron Comparison Chart

    ProductBestTank CapacityIroning TimeSteam PressureTemp ControlWeight
    Rowenta Steam StationLightweight1.2 L90 min5 barsManual9.3 lbs
    Rowenta DG8520 Perfect SteamHard Water1.4 L90 min5 barsManual12.2 lbs
    Dupray SteamIronIron Sewing & Quilting1 L1 hr3.5 barsManual11 lbs
    ABOX Garment Handheld SteamerTraveling100 ml7 minN/ANone1.4 lbs
    NAHANCO DG5030 Professional Steam IronCompact1.2 L90 min4 barsManual11.4 lbs
    Philips PerfectCare Elite GC9650Fast Ironing1.8 L2 hr7.5 barAuto11.2 lbs
    Laurastar Lift Steam IronHandheld1.1 L1 hr3.5 barsManual12 lbs
    Reliable 120IS Maven Steam IronBudget Pick1 L1 hr6 barsManual9.12 lbs
    Reliable Professional Iron StationProfessional-Grade3 L3 hr3.5 barsNone18.5 lbs
    Rowenta Iron and SteamerAll in One1 L1 hr5 barsNone32.5 lbs
    Jump to the Full Steam Generator Iron Reviews

    How to Descale a Steam Generator Iron

    Although a lot of steam generator irons come with anti-scale technology, some don’t. It’s important to know how to descale yours in case you experience build up.

    Top Tip

    Do you have a steam generator iron with anti-scale technology or a calc build up unit? Then follow the manufacturer’s instructions to properly deal with this.

    However, if you need to do this yourself, follow these instructions:

    1. Clean the soleplate: First, clean the soleplate. Dampen a large clean cloth and wipe it over a slightly warm soleplate. Adding a tiny bit of toothpaste can help get rid of extra grime.
    2. For the insides: Mix together equal parts water and distilled white vinegar.
    3. Fill: Fill the reservoir to about ⅓ full.
    4. Turn on: Turn it to medium heat and let it steam for five to ten minutes until the solution has evaporated.
    5. Refill: Refill the reservoir with fresh water and repeat step four.
    6. Wipe: Wipe the base and steam vents with a paper towel.

    To help prevent limescale build up, empty the water tank every time you’ve finished ironing.


    Choose a Steam Generator Iron

    If you do a lot of ironing and always aim for the freshest and crispest finish, then choose a steam generator iron.

    Steam generator irons are definitely an investment, but we believe they’re worth it. They’re the best irons on the market. The high pressure and continuous steam helps to get out stubborn wrinkles easily.

    There are lots of different kinds of steam generator irons. If you have hard water, choose one with a built-in scale remover. Always on the move? Choose a handheld steam generator iron.

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    About the Author

    Beth McCallum

    Beth McCallum is a 20-something freelance writer & book blogger with a degree in creative writing, journalism and English literature. Beth firmly believes that a tidy house is a tidy mind. She is always looking for new ways to sustainably clean and tidy her house, that's kind on the environment but effective in the house, too!
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