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The 5 Best Steam Mops (2022 Review)

Steam mops remove tough grime from hard floors around your home using hot water vapor instead of harsh chemicals. In this review, the This Old House Reviews Team researched the five best steam mops on Amazon to help you find the one that’s right for you. The products included in this article are available at various retail stores, local home centers, and online retailers like Amazon.

steam mop Adobe

Are you looking for a steam mop to add to your household cleaning arsenal? We’ve reviewed five of the best steam mops on Amazon, considering their maneuverability, capacity, and other offerings. If you’re in the market for a chemical-free cleaning method, read our review below.

Best Scent Control: BISSELL PowerFresh Steam Mop

This steam mop’s 16-ounce water tank heats up in just 30 seconds to clean your sealed hardwood, granite, marble, ceramic, and linoleum floors. It has three steam levels to give you more or less water vapor based on how tough the grime is. It also comes with a soft head pad, a scrubbing head pad, two scent discs, and a carpet glider.

Key Features

  • 6.82 pounds30-second heat time
  • 16-ounce water tank
  • 23-foot cord
  • Three steam levels
  • Two-year warranty

What Customers Are Saying

Customers were pleased with the lightweight nature of this steam mop. They also said that it was versatile, working on a variety of surfaces. The limited number of customers who gave this product a negative review said that there was hardly a difference between the steam settings.

Shortest Heat Time: O-Cedar Steam Mop

This mop turns the water in its tank to steam in only 20 seconds so that you can get to cleaning quicker. It also has a triangular head that fits in corners and comes with two reusable microfiber pads that absorb dust, dirt, and bacteria.

Key Features

  • Five pounds
  • 20-second heat time
  • 400-milliliter water tank
  • 19-foot cord
  • Three steam levels
  • One-year warranty

What Customers Are Saying

Those who gave this steam mop positive reviews said that it was maneuverable and produced a lot of steam. Some customers struggled to grip the mop’s handle in an ergonomic way that didn’t cause hand or wrist strain.

Most Versatile: LIGHT ‘N’ EASY Steam Mop

This machine acts as both a steam mop and a handheld cleaner. You can detach the body to turn it into a smaller steamer that cleans, deodorizes, and dewrinkles curtains, upholstery, and clothing.

Key Features

  • 6.3 pounds
  • 30-second heat time
  • Three steam levels
  • One-year warranty

What Customers Are Saying

Customers liked that this mop was durable, easy to push, and effective at reaching awkward spots. Some users said that it wasn’t powerful enough for tough grime, even on the highest steam level.

Best Mopping Pad: Shark Genius Steam Mop

Ideal for cleaning a large living room, this steam mop’s double-sided head flips the pad to the other side when the first one gets dirty. Since it comes with two dual mop pads, you have the equivalent of four heads that trap dirt.

Key Features

  • 5.77 pounds
  • 30-second heat time
  • 220-milliliter water tank
  • 22-foot cord
  • Three steam levels
  • One-year warranty

What Customers Are Saying

Happy customers appreciated how much dirt and grime this steam mop’s included pads could pick up. However, some users struggled to fill its tank with water or attach and remove its mop pads.

Most Heavy-Duty: McCulloch Steam Cleaner

For deep cleans in large homes, consider this heavy-duty steam mop. It has a 48-ounce water tank that can deliver up to 45 minutes of continuous, chemical-free steam to eliminate grease, grime, and dirt. Its nine-foot hose also has a lockable trigger to produce constant steam.

Key Features

  • 12 pounds
  • Eight-minute heat time
  • 48-ounce water tank
  • 45-minute runtime
  • 15.7-foot cord
  • One steam level
  • One-year warranty

What Customers Are Saying

Customers used this steam mop for unconventional purposes, such as removing wallpaper, cleaning ovens, and eliminating bed bugs. However, negative reviews claimed that it didn’t get hot enough.

Buyer’s Guide

To choose the steam mop that works best for your cleaning needs, it’s important to consider heat time, maneuverability, and more. Read below for information that can help you make an informed purchase.

Flooring

Look for a steam mop that can clean tile, hardwood, and the other materials that the floors around your home are made from. If you purchase a steam mop that only works with one type of flooring, it’s going to require several machines to get all of your floors clean.

Maneuverability

A lightweight steam mop is easier to push around and carry from room to room. However, it likely has a smaller water tank that requires more frequent refills. Another element that affects maneuverability is the mop’s head. A swiveling head can clean corners and other hard-to-reach spots.

Heat Time

Heat time measures how long it takes the water in a steam mop’s tank to heat to 212 degrees Fahrenheit and turn to steam. This time frame depends on the size of the water tank and the power of the steam mop. Most mops preheat in under a minute, but heavy-duty cleaners can take 10–15 minutes.

Steam Strength

Flow rate measures how strong the stream of water vapor from a steam mop is. The higher the flow rate, the more powerful the stream. A low level of steam should be sufficient for dust. If you have stains or other stuck-on grime, you need a higher steam level. For versatility, you can find a steam mop with multiple steam settings.

Water Tank

The water tank in your steam mop should be big enough to get the job done without stopping for refills but not so large that it’s difficult to maneuver or carry. Most steam mops hold around 15 ounces of water. To monitor the water level while you’re cleaning, look for a transparent tank.

Accessories

Most steam mops are sold with accessories. Common accessories include:

  • Reusable pads
  • Scrubbers
  • Scent discs
  • Jet nozzles

How a Steam Mop Works

Steam mops turn water into water vapor by heating it to 212 degrees Fahrenheit, which is the temperature at which the liquid turns to gas. When the water is boiled and pressurized inside of a sealed chamber, it releases a forceful stream of steam that loosens stains. In addition to targeting grime, the steam from steam mops also disinfects surfaces. The steam is hot enough to kill any bacteria that are living on your floors.

How To Use a Steam Mop

To make cleaning your floors with a steam mop easy and efficient, follow these basic guidelines.

Check for proper assembly

Before you begin cleaning, make sure that all of your mop’s components are working properly.

Use the right water

It’s important to follow the manufacturer’s recommendation regarding the type of water to use in your steam mop. Most steam mops work best with distilled water because it’s free of minerals that can clog the unit.

Let the mop preheat

Wait for your mop to produce steam before you use it. Once it’s preheated, start using it immediately, as letting it sit for too long in one spot can cause heat damage.

Prepare the floor

Sweep or vacuum your floor prior to mopping it. Otherwise, you’ll just move the dust around.

Do a spot test

Before using your mop for the first time, test it on an inconspicuous spot, such as under your couch. This is especially important if you have floors that are sensitive to moisture and heat. Set the steam to the lowest level, then lightly press the mop down on the concealed area to see how it responds.

Move the mop slowly

Push the mop forward to cover your floor in steam, then pull it back to get the pad to pick up any leftover dirt. Do this slowly over every square inch of your floor.

Change the mop pad

Don’t let the pad get soaked in steam, as this can cause streaks. It’s helpful to have at least one extra pad on hand in case you need to change it in the middle of your cleaning session.

Maintain the mop

After using your mop, you can’t just put it back in your closet. Follow the below tips to get it ready for storage.

  • Drain the water tank.
  • Place the pad in the washing machine.
  • Wipe the mop with a dry cloth.
  • Store the mop in a cool, dry space inside your home.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the benefits of using a steam mop?

Here are some of the reasons homeowners choose a steam mop over a regular mop:

  • It kills bacteria.
  • It neutralizes dander, dust, and other allergens.
  • It cleans without chemicals that are harmful to your family and the environment.

Can steam mops damage hardwood floors?

Steam mops shouldn’t damage a sealed hardwood floor unless this flooring has been weakened by constant contact to direct sunlight. If your floor is in sunlight, try the steam mop on an inconspicuous spot before using it to clean the entire surface. You shouldn’t use steam mops on unsealed hardwood floors at all because moisture can seep into their cracks.

What types of floors do steam mops work best on?

Steam mops work on a variety of surfaces, including:

  • Sealed hardwood
  • Vinyl
  • Ceramic
  • Marble
  • Porcelain

What materials aren’t safe to clean with steam?

You shouldn’t use a steam mop on polished or waxed floors because it could dull their shine. Steam isn’t safe on leather, velvet, or silk either.

Why Trust The This Old House Reviews Team

This Old House has empowered homeowners for more than four decades with top-notch home improvement content in the form of television programs, print media, and digital content on its website and social media platforms. The This Old House Reviews Team focuses on creating in-depth product and service review content to help inform your purchasing decision for just about any item or resource that you might need for your home. The This Old House Reviews Team has written over 1,000 reviews on products in the home space, from cordless drills to kitchen trash cans, lawn mowers, and dining room decorations.

We recommend products in each review using an intensive research process, spending hours combing through the best available models on Amazon. For a product to make our list of top picks, it must hold a solid sales record on Amazon, have consistently positive customer reviews, and offer unique features, among other factors. After narrowing down our list of recommendations, we conduct additional research and sometimes in-person testing to ensure that the products meet our standards. Once we conclude the research phase, we craft a well-rounded, user-friendly article that includes our recommended products and additional information to help homeowners like you make the right purchase.

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