Steam mops are considered among the safest steam cleaners capable of cleaning most floor surface types without the need for chemical detergents. With no chemicals used, steam mops are safe to use even with young children and pets around. With the market already flooded with different types of steam mops, identifying the best one for your needs can be confusing at times. Outlined below are a few factors you should consider when shopping for the ideal steam mop.
1. Floor Surface Type
While a steam cleaner comes in handy in almost all hard surfaces, special considerations ought to be made for other surfaces, and especially wooden surfaces.
Particular attention is needed when cleaning wooden floors with a steam mop. You'll, therefore, need to look for a steam mop with adjustable moisture, heat, and steam settings to avoid damaging the floor or its coating. You may also have to look for one with a carpet attachment to help keep carpets safe while cleaning them.
2. Size of the Cleaning Area
This is particularly important for those with multiple stories and larger homes. Many of the steam mops on the market have a relatively small tank, hence designed for the average house. A large cleaning area means the mop will need a larger tank to enable you to clean everywhere without having to refill several times per session.
Standard steam mops also come with short cords meant for simple jobs. It would therefore be advisable to go for a steam mop with a significantly longer cable. Cleaning machines with longer cords are mostly desired for they are much easier to operate when working in vast spaces. You also get to save lots of time when working on multiple rooms and large areas - see here to find out more.
3. Cleaning Material
The type of cleaning material used on the steam mop should be considered and especially if you have a wooden floor. Experts recommend going for machines equipped with a microfiber cloth for it cleans wooden surfaces efficiently without causing any damage. In addition to this, microfiber materials can be reused multiple times, are easy to wash, and trap dirt easily.
4. Ease of Use
A good steam mop should be easy to use. Some of the best brands can fold flat and swivel easily, hence recommended when cleaning around obstacles and especially furniture that cannot be moved around. Give special attention to the handle comfort and ergonomics to ensure you don’t have to stretch, bend, or get blisters due to the handle's hard surface.
5. Heat-up Time
The ideal steam mop should take less than 30 seconds to heat up. Avoid steam mops that require more than a minute to heat up. This however depends on how busy you are, budget, and other factors.
Steam mops that can be accessorized are the most preferred today. This is because you will need extra cleaning cloths to change when the original one is dirty and needs cleaning. Some mops will come with additional attachments to make cleaning hard to reach areas such as windows, doors, and the bottom of furniture easier. Look out for extra accessories when shopping for one.