7 facts steam cleaning machine companies don't want you to know
The fad of steam as a cleaner and disinfectant has been HOT as of recent, pardon my pun but could not resist...
But do they REALLY work to clean and disinfect?
The short answer is "kinda"...
Here are the limits to steam cleaners both surface and floor models:
1. Fact: Yes, steam will kill bacteria on contact. Most of the bacteria will be killed at 180 degrees F for 3 minutes. But the keyword it in this sentence is, contact. That means you must have direct steam on the surface for 3 minutes straight to do its job. Since the nozzle of most steamers is very small, we argue that realistically most folks who are cleaning are not having the nozzle on the surface with direct steam heat for the mandated time as it would be very time consuming and the machine would run out of water before all surfaces are properly steamed. So, the Youtube videos showing otherwise are smoke and mirrors, or should I say steam and mirrors.
2. Fact: It is very hot- The equipment uses steam at a very high temperature, therefore, its a risk to injury and if not used correctly is not as effective as traditional cleaning and disinfecting methods.
Many have reported injury while using machines. One only has to look at some one-star reviews to see that injury occurs often with the use of these machines as they reach such high heat, reports of blisters and burns are not uncommon.
3. Fact: It is slower-to disinfect with a machine than to clean traditionally with cleaners that contain disinfectant. with traditional cleaning methods, once a surface is cleaned one simply has to quickly spray the area till saturated wait 10 minutes and wipe/mop and the area is properly disinfected. The same cannot be said with steam cleaners when it requires having the nozzle be directly on the surface for 3 minuted straight every square inch of the home would be literally an all-day for several days straight process if at all possible. It is just not that practical, nor is your home properly cleaned/disinfected.
4. Fact: They are not as effective for Deep cleaning - Again, many negative reviews online have reported that these machines do not effectively remove unsightly, unhealthy mold and mildew stains that accumulate throughout homes especially in shower and tub areas. Bleach takes a 10 minutes to dwell time to successfully kill mold, mildew and whiten all your white surfaces in your home and if used as directed is a proven effective and safe way to deep clean.
5. Fact: Steam cleaners and mops are more expensive than traditional proven cleaning methods. Ranging from the one hundred to several thousands of dollars, these machines are out of most people's financial reach. The accessories are also an expense that needs upkeep. Such as the specially designed clothes, hoses, and attachments.
6. Fact: Since stream cleaners are machines they need proper maintenance and upkeep to continue to work. Homeowners have to often buy parts as they wear out, thus occurring an expense.
7. Fact: Steam cleaners are not mobile-Meaning, you are tethered to a machine. Once you reached the end of its cord or hose you have to unplug, wait for it to get hot again to continue to clean. Makes for a clumsy, ineffective, unpleasant cleaning experience.
In conclusion, stream cleaners dispute their slick, overproduced and one can say misleading Youtube videos show, have a long way to go to match conventional, tried and true cleaning methods using inexpensive, accessible cleaners and disinfectants. Our conclusion, save your money. you and your family's health is too important to rely on fads to clean.