Are steam mops overrated? Do they really lift away dirt and grime? A lot of people may have heard that steam mops are better than a traditional mop and bucket.
Well, we’re here to say that it could be true.
We all know that there are a lot of mops out there claiming to be the best for your home. But what entices us about the steam mop is its ability to kill pathogens and buff flooring at the same time. So, let’s get to it and find out more about steam mops.
Why Buy a Steam Mop?
If you’re going to spend a decent amount of money on a steam mop, you want it to be merited. Well, the good news is that there are a lot of advantages a steam mop can offer you. Let’s take a closer look.
1. Kills Germs and Bacteria
Steam is hot water vapor and this can eliminate bacteria and pathogens from surfaces (1). This means it can rid your floors of bacteria like Salmonella, which may be present on surfaces for up to four weeks (2).
In fact, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) recommended steam cleaning for preventing the spread of the norovirus in 2011 (3).
In addition, steam vapor may be able to get rid of pesky mold. It’s common for mold to grow in bathrooms when there’s moisture in the air. Using a steam mop over tiles and grouting might help to successfully remove it (4).
Hold the steam mop in place for five seconds
2. Floors Dry Faster
Have you ever noticed how wet a floor becomes after using a traditional mop? This may prevent you from entering the room for a while. It might even damage your flooring.
Steam mops, though, don’t soak your floor to clean it. Rather, they only make it damp enough for the mop head to do its job. Of course, since the floor isn’t flooded, it’ll dry a lot faster.
Even when you’re doing a deep clean, your floors can be dry for guests coming around soon. This may make it safer for pets and children too since it’ll be less slippery.
3. Removes Stubborn Grime
Sometimes regular mops just aren’t suitable for tough stains and marks. You could also use some elbow grease and get down with scrubbing on your knees. Alternatively, you could make it easy by using a steam mop.
The heat and water vapor can help to remove stubborn grime and loosen marks on your floor. This may be a lot quicker and easier to use. There’s definitely going to be less scrubbing involved.
4. No Need to Use Harsh Chemicals
A lot of cleaning agents and solutions can be damaging to your floor. They may include strong chemicals, which might strip your flooring of its natural color and shine over time. Ultimately, this may shorten the lifespan of your home flooring.
The good thing about a steam mop is that there’s no need for any cleaning solutions – it just uses water. This might help to clean your floor and promote years of enjoyment. It can also be cheaper on your wallet too.
Do you really want your home to smell of bleach or other strong chemicals? If your answer is no, you may want to consider a steam mop.
Don’t use steam mops on unsealed wooden floors
5. Pet and Child-Friendly
If you have young children or pets in your home, you may be conscious of the chemicals you are using. With a steam mop, there should be nothing toxic for your kids or furry friends. It’s also beneficial for those with allergies (7).
We’ve even found that steam has the natural ability to kill fleas, including some eggs, adults and larval fleas (8). This may be for you if you have pets and don’t want to use harsh chemicals.
It is, however, worth noting that the humidity from steam cleaning can encourage the hatching of flea eggs after one or two days. The few that reappear will have to be dealt with again.
Choosing the Best Steam Mop
With so many products out there to choose from, we’ve narrowed down some good features you may want to look for.
1. Fast Heat-Up Time
When you wish to clean with your steam mop, you don’t want to wait forever for it to be ready. So, when you’re browsing to make a purchase, look out for one with a fast heat-up time. We’d say that around 20 to 30 seconds is as quick as it gets.
2. Adjustable Steam Levels
A steam mop that has different intensities may be good if you’ve got different types of flooring in your home. This means you can simply change the steam level depending on the task at hand.
In addition, a dial may also be beneficial depending on the cleaning task. For example, if you are cleaning your floors every day, you may choose a low setting. Whereas if you’re completing a deep clean, the high setting might speed up the job.
3. Microfiber Mop Head
The steam loosens any grime and dirt but this has to be trapped by the mop head. Microfiber may be the best material for this task.
Microfiber is able to remove 99 percent of bacteria from your floor (9). Combined with the natural sanitation qualities of steam, this may help to get your home spick and span. It has fibers to lift and hold bacteria and debris.
4. Large Water Tank Capacity
The larger the water tank, the easier it is to clean without refilling. If you’ve got large spaces to clean, the fewer trips to the faucet the better.
Look out for steam mops with a large water tank capacity to make the job less of a hassle. We’ve seen sizes between 9 fluid ounces and 16 fluid ounces.
Use distilled water to fill up the water tank
5. Fragrance Discs
Do you like fresh fragrances and leaving a pleasant smell behind when you clean? Perhaps you can look out for a steam mop that provides fragrance discs. These attach to the mop head so that a lovely fragrance is present in the room.
Do you want to clean more than just your floors? Look out for a steam mop that has a detachable, handheld function. This can let you target specific areas of grime by hand, especially surfaces and grouting.
Some will give you the option to clean furniture and clothing as well. The handheld option will be necessary for this as it offers more precise control.
The Best Steam Mops of 2020
We’ve put a lot of time and effort into finding the best steam mops for you. This has involved countless hours of research and reading through customer reviews. Check out our top five below.
1. LIGHT ‘N’ EASY Steam Mop
What we love about this one is its versatility. It’s not only suitable for cleaning floors, it also turns into a garment and handheld steamer. This means you can use this for your furniture, clothing, and grouting too.
Just unclip the handheld tool and you’ve got a handheld steamer. The nozzle and hose included make it straightforward to use and to revive cotton and other soft materials around your abode.
The smart switch and sensors on the mop mean it’s easy to start cleaning. You can start cleaning in as little as 30 seconds. You’ll know you’re ready to go since the digital indicator light will stop flashing.
The digital steam control means you can choose your desired steam intensity. Options range between low, medium and high.
With the wide mop head of 11.8 inches by 6.8 inches, you may cover a lot of ground. It’s suitable for use on practically all flooring. It also has a microfiber cloth pad for capturing dirt.
The ergonomic handle makes it easy to glide around without any effort. A water cup is included for filling up the steamer with water. There’s even a hook for organizing the power cord for storage.
- Digital controls for scrubbing.
- Versatile cleaning around the home.
- Features detachable handheld steamer.
- May not be suitable for taller individuals.
Why We Love It
Digital Controls for Scrubbing
You have the ability to choose the steam level you require. There are three settings available, enabling light or deep cleaning. You can easily switch at any time.
This steam mop is effortless to use thanks to the smart switch. You just have to tilt the handle to activate the steam and start gliding the mop over the floor. To stop, simply stand the steamer upright.
You don’t have to use any buttons – it’s all automatic with your movement for ultimate convenience.
Versatile Cleaning Around the Home
In addition to the microfiber mop head included, there’s also an attachment for cleaning furniture and clothing. This may help to remove creases and freshen up materials. The flexible hose is easy and lightweight to use.
Features Detachable Handheld Steamer
It’s easy to detach the handheld steamer and clean surfaces, grouting and wall tiles. There’s a steam nozzle included for targeted cleaning, with a smart sensor for activating the steam. You might want to blast away oil and stubborn grime.
Just hold your hand over the smart sensor to begin and remove your hand to stop. It’s simple.
Keep In Mind
May Not be Suitable for Taller Individuals
Unfortunately, this steam mop is only 46 inches in length. This may mean it’s not going to be comfortable for taller folk. It doesn’t have an adjustable handle and you might want to watch you don’t injure your back.
|Handle Length||46 inches|
|Water Tank||11.5 fluid ounces|
|Mop Head Dimensions||11.8 inches by 6.8 inches|
|Extras Included||Microfiber mop head, flexible hose, steam nozzle, and water filling cup|
2. Shark Genius Hard Floor Steam Mop
Don’t you hate having to touch a dirty mop pad when you’ve cleaned all your floors? Well, with this mop, you don’t have to. You just press a button and it releases the mop pad into the laundry basket.
What’s more, the two mop pads are double-sided, which means you just have to flip it over once it gets dirty. This may help you clean faster and avoid changing your mop head while you’re trying to complete your daily chores.
They’re microfiber for mopping up spills and dust, which means they’re also reusable. The strips of grip material might be good for stubborn dirt. You can hand wash or throw them in the machine afterward.
Another good feature is the large water tank. It can store 12.3 fluid ounces of water for creating the steam. With the direct steam channeling, this may allow for evenly distributed steam onto the mop pad.
You’ve even got intelligent steam control on this Shark mop. With three settings you can choose the amount of steam you want to deliver to your flooring.
Do you have any tough grime on your floor that won’t seem to budge? Perhaps the “steam blaster” function might work. This allows you to deliver a concentrated steam spray onto the spot through the nozzle.
- Steam blaster for sticky messes.
- Large water tank for efficient cleaning.
- Includes dual-sided dirt grip pads.
- Doesn’t stand up on its own.
Why We Love It
Steam Blaster for Sticky Messes
We all know that some messes require a little bit more scrubbing. But you don’t have to use elbow grease with this steam mop.
Instead, you can take advantage of the “steam blaster” setting to loosen it up. Then you can simply wipe it away with the microfiber mop pad.
Large Water Tank for Efficient Cleaning
With the large water tank, you may not have to refill your steam mop so often. It can help to deliver constant steam for buffing your floors with 12.3 fluid ounces of water.
There’s a water fill flask included with this mop to make it easy to fill up when it’s necessary.
Includes Dual-Sided Dirt Grip Pads
Not a lot of steam mops offer the dual-sided dirt grip pads, but this one does. They’re made from a reusable microfiber so that it’s soft and non-abrasive on your flooring. Just flip over the mop to use the clean side.
It has the zigzag pattern of grip material, which may help take away that tough dirt.
Keep In Mind
Doesn’t Stand Up on Its Own
The one downside to this steam mop is that you have to lean it up against something. Its weight means that it can fall over on its own, which may become annoying when you’ve got to pause.
|Water Tank Capacity||12.3 fluid ounces|
|Cord Length||22 feet|
|Mop Pad Material||Microfiber|
|Extras Included||Two dirt grip pads, spray bottle with cleaning solution, and water fill flask.|
3. O-Cedar Microfiber Steam Mop
This is the only steam mop on our list that has a triangular head. This may be good for tackling those small and hard-to-reach spots around your home, such as corners and narrow spaces.
We like that this product has a lightweight design. It’s only 5 pounds, which may make it easier to carry up and down stairs. It also heats up fast – just wait 20 seconds and it’s ready to go.
It’s supplied with a soft microfiber mop pad. The pad is machine washable up to 25 times, which may help reduce waste and help the environment. Just avoid using fabric softener and lay it out flat to dry.
It also includes an extra refill. You’ve got a spare when you’re washing your other mop pad and it may save you some money. This steam mop can also be used to clean carpets thanks to the snap-on glider that’s included.
There’s an easy-to-use steam level function. All you’ve got to do is twist the dial to any point between minimum and maximum.
- Triangular head for small spaces.
- Adjustable steam level for control.
- Heats up fast.
- Mop head is small at 12 inches by 8.8 inches.
Why We Love It
Triangular Head for Small Spaces
The mop head is unique, unlike the standard rectangular mop head shape. This may be a better option for cleaning behind furniture, in corners and underneath obstacles in your home.
Adjustable Steam Level for Control
This steam mop can be suitable for all of the different floors in your home. By simply adjusting the dial on the front of the steam mop, you can control the steam emitted.
This means you can decide between a quick clean to shine your flooring or a deep clean when it’s necessary.
Heats Up Fast
You don’t have to wait a long time to get cleaning if you’ve got a busy schedule. Plug it into the nearest power outlet and you’ve only got to wait around 20 seconds for the steam to begin. This is 10 seconds faster than some others on the market.
Keep In Mind
Mop Head Is Small at 12 inches by 8.8 inches
Compared to some other steam mops, you may find this one has a smaller head, covering less surface area. It’s 12 inches by 8.8 inches and this might require more motion and effort to clean a larger space.
|Number of Mop Heads Included||Two|
|Start-Up Time||20 seconds|
|Extras Included||Snap-on carpet glider|
|Mop Head Dimensions||12 inches by 8.8 inches|
4. Bissell PowerFresh Steam Mop
Do you want to make your home smell fresh and welcoming? You might want to try out this steam mop. Not only can the steam sanitize your floors but it can also make your home smell fantastic.
The mop head uses microfiber attachments for restoring your floors. There’s a soft pad included for everyday cleaning, plus a scrubby pad for resilient stains. It weighs 6 pounds.
Another good thing about this steam mop is the customizable steam level. The digital control enables you to choose the level of steam you want for your cleaning needs.
A lower setting will be best for everyday buffing, while a higher setting might be ideal for monthly deep cleans. For stubborn dirt, there’s a flip-down scrubber you can try. This may help to remove marks on your flooring or any grime that won’t budge.
- Tackle stubborn dirt with the flip-down scrubber.
- Customizable steam level.
- Includes refreshing spring breeze fragrance discs.
- Doesn’t have an adjustable handle.
Why We Love It
Tackle Stubborn Dirt With the Flip-Down Scrubber
The scrubber brush is a good accessory that may help with scuffs and tough marks. Simply flip it down with your foot and it can scrub away behind your steam mop. Then you can just fold it back up once you’re done.
Customizable Steam Level
The adjustable steam levels mean that you’re not limited to cleaning one type of floor. You can adjust the digital control between low, medium and high.
Includes Refreshing Spring Breeze Fragrance Discs
Now you can leave a clean and revitalizing scent behind while you mop. This is the only steam mop on our list that includes this awesome feature. The spring breeze fragrance is released due to the steam heating up the disc.
It’s recommended to take out the fragrance disc before you wash the mop pad. This may help to prolong the scent.
Keep In Mind
Doesn’t Have an Adjustable Handle
This product doesn’t have an adjustable handle. So, you’ll need to check if it’s the right length (46 inches) for your height to avoid any discomfort while cleaning.
|Cord Length||23 feet|
|Power Rating||1500 watts|
|Extras Included||Microfiber soft pad, microfiber scrubby pad, two spring breeze fragrance discs|
|Water Tank Capacity||16 fluid ounces|
5. Bissell Symphony Pet Steam Mop and Vacuum
If you have pets, you may be interested in this two-in-one steam mop. You can save time and energy cleaning up after your furry friends since this model vacuums and steams at the same time. You can get rid of hair and scrub away dirty paw marks.
It’s suitable for use on a variety of flooring and weighs 9.74 pounds. This includes marble, hardwood, and linoleum. It only takes around 30 seconds to warm up before it can be used.
With the 12.8-ounce water tank, you may only have to fill it up once when you’re cleaning your floors. We also like the “dry-tank” technology with this product, which is designed to keep moisture out. This may prevent bad odors from your vacuum and steam mop.
Furthermore, you don’t have to touch the dirt when you’re emptying your vacuum. With one button, you can empty all the debris straight into the trash.
There is a disposable pad for one-off messes and a microfiber pad that can be reused. You can simply throw it in the washing machine. You’ll receive an eight pack of odor-eliminating scent discs as well.
- Disposable and reusable mop pads for all cleaning tasks.
- “Drop-IT” tank for hands-free disposal.
- Cyclonic vacuum for powerful suction.
- Some customers experienced leaks.
Why We Love It
Disposable and Reusable Mop Pads for All Cleaning Tasks
You can be armed for every cleaning task. So, if you’ve discovered a bad mess caused by your pet or an accident, you can use the disposable pad. For every day and regular cleaning tasks, you might want to use the reusable one.
Drop-IT Tank for Hands-Free Disposal
Nobody wants to clean up all the dust and dirt and then have to get it on their hands. Once you’re finished with the vacuum, you can take advantage of the Drop-IT tank to avoid touching any germs.
Cyclonic Vacuum for Powerful Suction
We love the ability to vacuum before steam mopping the floors. This might save you time, as you can vacuum up loose debris before buffing your surfaces.
But this isn’t an ordinary vacuum – it’s cyclonic. You don’t have to purchase any bags. Unlike other vacuums, the cyclonic system means that you can collect dust and dirt without losing suction.
Keep In Mind
Some Customers Experienced Leaks
During our research, we did notice that some customers experienced leaks with this mop. They seemed to be coming from the bottom of the mop head and the water was dripping out onto the floor.
|Steam Power Rating||1100 watts|
|Vacuum Power Rating||400 watts|
|Warm-Up Time||30 seconds|
|Water Tank Capacity||12.8 fluid ounces|
|Product||Award||Weight||Water Tank||Mop Head Dimensions||Extras|
|LIGHT ‘N’ EASY||Most Multifunctional Mop||6.4 lbs||11.5 oz||11.8″ x 6.8″||Microfiber mop head, flexible hose, steam nozzle, & water filling cup|
|Shark Genius||Best For Hygiene||5.78 lbs||12.3 oz||—||Two dirt grip pads, spray bottle with cleaning solution, & water fill flask.|
|O-Cedar Microfiber||Best For Corners||5 lbs||—||12″ x 8.8″||N/A|
|Bissell PowerFresh||Best For Bad Odors||6 lbs||16 oz||—||Microfiber soft pad, microfiber scrubby pad, two spring breeze fragrance discs|
|Bissell Symphony||Best For Pets||9.74 lbs||12.8 oz||—||N/A|
Full Steam Ahead
Purchasing a steam mop may be one of the best cleaning decisions you ever make. It has the ability to sanitize your floors in a kid and pet-friendly way, avoiding the need for strong chemicals.
Some features you may want to look for include fragrance discs for a pleasant smell and microfiber for effective cleaning. A large water tank may also make things more efficient, along with a quick heat-up time.
Is there a steam mop on our list that you like? Leave us a comment below and let’s talk about it!