Full Review – Kärcher Multi-Purpose Steam Cleaner

Karcher is a brand that is synonymous with efficiency and power when it comes to steam cleaners. They have developed a name for themselves by producing powerful, effective vapour steam cleaners that can be used for nearly any mess in your home. The Kärcher Multi-Purpose Steam Cleaner continues in this tradition, and provided us with an excellent test product that performed very well in every test we subjected it to. When we tested it, we found we could operate the device for over 20 minutes without requiring a refill. Additionally, the separate boiler/mop setup of the Multi-Purpose means you can refill the tank even while it is being used, eliminating the need to wait for water to boil before use. For the price, we highly recommend testing out the Karcher Multi-Purpose for your general steam cleaning needs. It is flexible, lightweight and provides an excellent starting point for those interested in testing out steam cleaning options.

The Good:

To start with, the Karcher Multi-Purpose provides 3.5 bar pressure through a separated mop/boiler combination. We found this strong enough to power through almost any job we put in front of it. The adjustable steam control gave us just the right amount of steam depending on the work we needed it to do.. Even when we did have to conduct a refill, the Multi-Purpose has a continuous steam function which permits you to refill the water even as the device is producing more steam. This eliminated the wait times most steam cleaners have after refills and helped cut down on our overall cleaning times, particularly for larger rooms.

We really liked the price of the Multi-Purpose. For the same price as most steam mops, it provides you with steam jets that are twice as powerful and eliminates the waiting associated with waiting for heat up. We were also impressed by the 2-year guarantee that comes with the product. Karcher is known to stand behind their products and this is a rarity that most steam cleaning manufacturers do not provide. This makes it ideal as a first-time steam cleaning purchase as you are guaranteed to get your money’s worth and the product itself is among the better ones we tested.

The Bad:

Although there is much to say for the Karcher Multi-Purpose, it does have some shortcomings. With a relatively small 500 mL water tank, regular refills will be a necessity. Although the continuous steam function makes this a relatively minor issue, it will require you to make regular trips for water adding to your cleaning times. The hose only extends 4 metres in any direction, meaning larger rooms will require you to move the boiler regularly.

One of the bigger shortcomings of the Karcher Multi-Purpose is that it does not feature a carpet-gliding attachment. This limits the number of places it can be used effectively although we found that it worked great on tiled floors and countertops. Depending on whether your home has a lot of carpet or not may determine whether or not this is the right product for you. To add to this point, the Multi-Purpose is not ideal for outdoor use. This is normal for most steam cleaning products, but it is something that limits its abilities.

What We Love:

– Very powerful
– Great for nearly every surface in your home
– Continuous steam function means no waiting for heat-up
– Extremely lightweight and flexible
– Can be used on fabrics and upholstery

What Can Be Improved:

– Water tank is small and requires regular refills
– Extension hose extends only 4 metres and limits mobility
– Can’t be used on carpets or outdoors

Hoover SteamJet Express Handheld Steam Cleaner

The Hoover SteamJet Express is a portable little steam cleaner which is designed to get into small, cramped areas and perform the job of cleaning them with minimal time spent on heat-up or refills. It has the advantage of being a handheld steam cleaner, making it very light and easy to use, with a simple trigger-use system.

It is among the most powerful handheld steam cleaners we reviewed and produces a significant amount of steam, despite having a relatively small water tank when compared to vapour steam cleaners.

The Good:

The Hoover SteamJet Express has a lot going for it. It is extremely compact in the way most handheld steam cleaners are. It provides a lot of steam power for its size, and can be operated for up to 15 consecutive minutes without the need for a refill. It is also very flexible as it can be used for spot-cleaning carpets or as a general-purpose cleaning option for countertops, windows, grout or appliances. We even found it useful when defrosting a freezer quickly and efficiently.

In terms of heat-up time, the SteamJet Express is ready to use in less than 30 seconds, making it one of the faster steam cleaners we found to go from refill to work. It comes with a number of accessories which make general above-floor cleaning a breeze. Additionally, the price alone makes this steam cleaner a great choice as a first-time steam cleaner purchase. With it, you will know whether or not steam cleaners are an effective method for cleaning your home without breaking the bank in the process.

The Bad:

While the price is right and there are a lot of great things to be said about it, the SteamJet Express has the shortcomings of many handheld steam cleaners. For one, it has a very limited water tank capacity, which will make refills unavoidable for large-scale cleaning jobs. This limits the number of jobs it is able to accomplish and removes the ability to clean large surfaces like floors and carpets efficiently. A few reviews we browsed also claim that the attachments such as the wire brushes do not stand up under extended use, although we found no indication of this.

What We Love:

– Very lightweight and easy to use
– Powerful enough for general-purpose cleaning
– Heats up very quickly and no wait times to continue cleaning
– Great for spot-cleaning spills on carpets and floors
– Can be used on almost all surfaces including windows, grout, countertops
– Well-priced

What Can Be Improved:

– Limited water capacity means more refills required for larger cleaning jobs
– Not ideal for large-scale cleaning jobs
– Difficult to use on wide areas of carpet or tiled floors

Fabric Steam Cleaners

Steam cleaners designed for use with fabrics have been around for a while. That being said, it took a long time to perfect a system that allowed for a deep clean while simultaneously avoiding too much exposure to moisture. Today’s fabric steam cleaners are far and above some of the best to have ever been invented. They can come in handheld or full-system forms, allowing you to move around your home easily and thoroughly cleaning your furniture, drapes, clothing and towels.

These excellent cleaning machines give you an alternative to dusting on a regular basis, adding moisture to the air and removing additional particles from your home, limiting the amount of dust which collects and giving you a quick cleaning option that doesn’t involve chemicals of any kind.

When it comes to purchasing a steam cleaner for fabric, it is worth taking a look at vapour and handheld devices since they give you options both for portability and for “dry steaming”. The benefit of dry steaming is the production of high-pressured steam using as little water as possible. This limits the amount of water that makes its way into your furniture, which eliminates the risk of water damage that most water-based cleaning solutions have.

Ideal Steam Cleaners For Fabrics:

Handheld

PROS:

– Portable and lightweight for every situation
– Easy for localized cleaning
– Able to target problem areas

CONS:

– Do not run for very long
– Some use too much water for effective cleaning
– Can damage some kinds of furniture and fabrics

Vapour Steam Cleaners

PROS:

– High pressure systems allow for deep cleaning
– Run for a long time when compared to most steam cleaners
– Dry steaming can be used on any kind of fabric without risk of damage

CONS:

– Heavier cleaning system
– Requires more energy
– Costs more than handheld devices

Morphy Richards 12-in-1 Steam Cleaner

The Morphy Richards 12-in-1 is a great choice for those looking to do regular, everyday cleaning on all floored surfaces. With 400mL of water tank storage, this Steam Mop/Handheld steam cleaner gives you enough steaming time to cover most floors in your home quickly and easily. The carpet-attachment allows you to cover both your hardwood, tiled and carpeted floors with minor time spent changing parts. The built-in boiler safety system means you don’t have to wait for this steam mop to cool down before switching out accessories. We particularly liked the portability and light weight of this model. Although we don’t suggest it, there is also an attachment for handling upholstery and fabrics.

What We Liked:

– Lightweight
– Easy to use
– No wait to switch accessories

What Could Be Improved:

– No as much water storage as vapour steam cleaners
– Less pressure than vapour steam cleaners
– Upholstery attachment did not perform well

Efbe-Schott SteamEasy 4-Bar Steam Cleaner

The Efbe-Schott SteamEasy 4-Bar is a fantastic steam cleaning system. It encompasses everything you could want in a handheld steam cleaner: power, mobility, runtime and flexibility. With a 1.1 litre water tank, multiple extensions for different surfaces around the house, and with a portable handheld design, you can use this steam cleaner all over the house from ceiling to floor.

We absolutely loved the 4 bar pressure we achieved with it which blew every comparable device we tested out of the water. In our experience, you simply don’t get 4 bar pressure from a handheld device.

Of Note:

From a comfort perspective, it was one of the only devices we tested that was absolutely thermo-regulated, meaning it can be operated without feeling warm to the touch. Many devices tend to overheat after extensive use. Not so with the Efbe-Schott SteamEasy. It also comes with a shoulder strap for easy portability. This is great since a 1.1 litre tank of water can become heavy after extended use.

Everything about the SteamEasy is made for easy, effective use. Above all, the best part of our experience with Efbe-Schott was the customer service. Unlike many steam cleaners, this company stands behind its products and provides a 7/7 customer support service which allows you to get replacement parts or help with the machine if necessary. We did not have a problem with the device we tested, but it is great to know that a company stands behind its product even after you have bought it.

In terms of negatives, there are a couple of issues we had with the SteamEasy. Although it is capable of general floor coverage and cleaning carpets, we found it much more useful for spot-cleaning and power-cleaning rather than full-floor cleaning. This steam cleaner was designed for use on construction sites and it shows in how powerful, portable and efficient it is. That being said, it will work effectively for general-purpose home cleaning, and has the muscle to take care of the big messes when necessary. It can be overkill with regard to light dirt cleanups, however.

What We Love:

– Most powerful handheld steam cleaner we tested
– Huge water tank allows for long run time
– Very portable, easy to use

What Can Be Improved:

– Might be overkill for light house messes
– Best for emergency cleaning
– Can get heavy without shoulder strap

Carpet Steam Cleaners

Carpet steam cleaners are what most people think of when they hear the words “steam cleaners”. Traditionally, these have been large, clunky machines that focus on removing stains from carpets. Rather than using steam cleaners as an emergency measure to remove stains from carpets, most of the products we have collected are meant to be used as part of your normal cleaning cycle. This keeps your carpet fresh and sanitized while avoiding stains setting in.

The benefits of carpet steam cleaners is that they are created with portability and ease of use in mind. Most are either portable units that look like vacuum cleaners, or can be mounted on your shoulders so you don’t have to worry about annoying cords getting in the way.

The primary consideration you should take into account when considering what carpet steam cleaner to get is how much bar pressure it holds and, depending on the amount of carpet in your home, the amount of water it contains. This will help in decided how long the steam cleaner can operate for and how deep the steam will penetrate into the carpet.

Ideal Steam Cleaners For Carpet:

Handheld

PROS:

– Extremely portable for easy use
– Allows you to specifically target problem areas of your carpet
– Can be placed on shoulder or back for portability

CONS:

– Very little water capacity
– Not ideal for large carpeted areas
– Can get heavy if not mounted

Vapour Steam Cleaners

PROS:

– Dry steaming gives deep clean
– Large water capacity for large carpeted areas
– High pressure systems provide highest sanitation

CONS:

– Large systems can be unwieldy around the home
– Requires more energy
– Heavier than handheld options

The Shark 2-In-1 Electric Steam Cleaner Full Review

The Electric Steam Cleaner Mop & Handheld Steamer!

As far as steam mop/handheld steam cleaner combinations go, the Shark 2 in 1 is a fantastic choice for homeowners looking to make their regular cleaning regimen a bit faster and easier. The mop function is terrific for regular cleanups, ensuring the floor is fresh and clean with no allergens present.

The handheld breakaway section is excellent for cleaning tasks around the house including tiled and hardwood floors, bathrooms, kitchens and furniture. We have even heard of people using it to defrost their freezers.

What we particularly enjoy about this particular addition to the Shark steam cleaning family is that it can be used literally anywhere. Whether you are planning on taking care of the weekly buildup of dirt and grime or taking care of a significant spring cleaning project, you have the right tool in the Shark 2 in 1. Attachments and differentiated settings allow you to decide how much steam pressure you want to use, and how you want to use it.

We found the jets on this device to be more powerful than many other steam mops we tested, with the added benefit that it transforms into a handheld steamer with the push of a button. We were impressed with how it worked from start to finish, and would highly recommend it to anyone looking for a handy, flexible steam cleaning mop for their home.​

On the other hand, there were some noteworthy inadequacies we have seen in other reviews. Generally speaking, the difficulties come from a lack of steam pressure – a consistent complaint when it comes to these devices. Anything that is portable and is capable of boiling water to create significant amounts of steam will be prone to mechanical failure. When we tested it, we did not come across this problem, but we can’t ignore the reviews of other users. Another issue we have seen referenced regularly is the inability of this device to clean serious messes. As we mentioned above, we would not suggest it for heavy-duty cleaning. It is designed to handle regular, day-to-day jobs.

That being said, we are satisfied with our test of the Shark 2 in 1 and would suggest you give it a try to see if it’s right for you.

What We Love:

– Enough power for basic, everyday use
– Very flexible for all jobs around the house
– Reasonable price based on comparable products

What Can Be Improved:

– Other reviews have found the steam jets to be weak
– May not be able to handle serious messes
– Can’t take much punishment

Morphy Richards 9-in-1 Upright & Handheld Steam Mop

As far as home cleaning goes, this is really the only product you need. As with all steam cleaners, it removes the need for harsh chemicals and corrosive substances in your home. However the true beauty of this device is that it allows you to operate it as either an upright steam mop and it includes a detachable handheld steam cleaner which allows you to get into messy corners, countertops and onto upholstery. It performed well in nearly every one of our tests, but struggled when it came to excessively heavy grease during our barbeque test. For everyday cleaning, you won’t find many better products on the market, and certainly not for the price.

There are many aspects of this device that we enjoyed during the test phase. To start with, the 400 mL water tank capacity meant that the operating time of this mop surpassed most other comparable products. With most devices this can take upwards of 5 minutes, which just adds more time to your cleaning schedule. The boiler system is second to none and allows for instantaneous cleaning without having to wait for warm-up. This also means that when you do have to refill, you can fill and immediately move back to cleaning without having to wait.

There is also a detachable handheld steam cleaner which can be used for any surface from countertops to ovens and grout to carpet. It can also extend to be used for windows, clothing and tiled floors, depending on your cleaning needs. The great thing about this extension is that it does not lose any power when it is used. Many other detachable handheld options don’t perform at the same level as the mop.

Unfortunately, the device is not without its faults. At only 14 minutes of runtime, it allows you a bit less cleaning time than most steam mops. However, we felt this was counteracted by the fact there is no heat up period, meaning the refill process is quick and easy. The steam mop carpet attachment was also not as good as others we have tested, although it got the job done.

What We Love:

– Very powerful for a steam mop
– Great detachable handheld steam cleaner for multiple surfaces
– No heat up time

What Can Be Improved:

– Shorter runtime than some steam mops we tested
– Carpet attachment is okay, but not great

Pifco 10-in-1 Steam Mop

As far as steam mop/handheld steam cleaner combinations go, the Shark 2 in 1 is a fantastic choice for homeowners looking to make their regular cleaning regimen a bit faster and easier. The mop function is terrific for regular cleanups, ensuring the floor is fresh and clean with no allergens present. The handheld breakaway section is excellent for cleaning tasks around the house including tiled and hardwood floors, bathrooms, kitchens and furniture. We have even heard of people using it to defrost their freezers.

With a 400mL water tank, the 10-in-1 Steam Mop is very average in terms of runtime and the need to refill for steam cleaning devices. It requires a heat-up time of about 30 seconds, which is a bit slower than the industry average of 20 seconds. That being said, the primary talking point here is the price. Depending on the brand you buy, this device is about 5 times cheaper than the average steam mop/handheld detachment equivalent. This makes it an excellent entry-level steam-cleaner and one we would suggest you try out before moving on to larger purchases.

That being said, with lower price comes less functionality. We felt that this steam mop was put together less solidly than most steam mops we tested, and therefore is more likely to fail. Based on our experience, we estimate that this product will likely last for about a year of consistent use before needing to be replaced. Most products we tested average between 3 and 7 years of active service, so this is not a bad deal with all factors considered. The two big disadvantages it features are a relatively small service area (about 5 metres) and the fact that it is not really made for cleaning carpets. All being said and done, if you live in a typical house and do not need a miracle-working steam cleaner, this is probably the right product for you – especially as a starting item.

What We Love:

– Very easy to use
– Great starting steam cleaner
– Extremely affordable

What Can Be Improved:

– A bit flimsy compared to other steam mops
– Not made for carpets
– Requires regular refills

Beldray 10-in-1 Steam Cleaner

The Beldray 10-in-1 Steam Cleaner is a great first-purchase option for those wondering if a steam cleaner is the right choice for their home. It features a steam mop for full floor coverage from tiled floors to hardwood and even carpet. It also has a handheld detachable option for covering the areas of your home that a mop can’t reach – countertops, cupboards, stove tops, sinks, bathtubs and grout. It can even be used effectively to clean windows from top to bottom. We think it is a great product for the cost since it takes care of everyday cleaning tasks with ease and gives you a taste of the power of steam cleaning.

The Beldray 10-in-1 has a 450mL water tank, which surpasses most steam mops on the market and provides you with about 15 minutes of operational steam time before a refill is necessary. The amount of water used by the mop can be altered according to the degree of the mess you have to clean up, and it only takes about 20 seconds to reach full steam potential. This means that the breaks between use are minimized and you can complete your regular cleaning more quickly and efficiently. With 3 bar pressure coming out of the steam jets, the power of this device is incredible when compared to most steam mops on the market. Unfortunately, that power comes at a price.

To start with, the 10-in-1 is very heavy at almost 5 Kg. This is about twice the weight of the average steam mop, and can make regular cleaning a bit tiresome. We found the attachments were a bit flimsy. Although we never experienced a failure while we tested it, this is something to be aware of. Lastly, the regular refill intervals made cleaning large spaces a bit of a chore. However, we do not see this being a problem when used in the average household.

What We Love:

– Very powerful versus other comparable products
– Extremely flexible
– Great starter steam cleaner

What Can Be Improved:

– Regular refills are a bit of a pain
– Can get heavy if used for prolonged periods of time
– Not a great choice for upholstery