It’s understandable why so many people rate steam mops as the best way to clean hard floors. Nothing beats the cleaning and sanitizing power of steam. Floor steamers may also owe their great popularity to the ease with which they clean hardwood floors, tiles, and so many other surfaces in the home. You really can’t beat these appliances for fast and thorough cleaning. It doesn’t take much effort to use a steam floor cleaner and you’re able to get into all sorts of nooks and crannies where other mops fall short. Steam is definitely the best way to clean tile grout and effortlessly blast away mold.
Though, embarking on a search for a good steam mop may seem like an almost impossible task. There are so many options these days and it’s not easy to distinguish between customer reviews and opinions. This is why we’ve done a comprehensive comparison of the top-rated steam mops available to you. Some models are a hit because they are so affordable. On the other hand, we expect the more expensive steam floor cleaners to offer the very best in terms of build quality and high-tech features. But is this always true? In the end, we all want good value for our money. That’s where this review of the best steam mops should be an invaluable resource. Whether you’re looking for the very best, no matter the cost, or good old-fashioned value for money, we’ll help you find what you’re looking for.
1. Bissell Powerfresh Pet Steam Mop
Bissell has earned a reputation for providing some of the best appliances and cleaning products for pet owners. A love of pets seems to be a genuine part of the Bissell philosophy, they even donate a percentage of their product sales to the Bissell Pet Foundation. This makes the Bissell Pet Steam (19404) mop a great choice for animal lovers. It’s not only fantastic for removing pet odor and bacteria, this is also one of the more affordable options from a brand with a stellar reputation for quality and service.
I really like the slim ergonomic design of this steam mop. It’s not only delightfully elegant, but also a breeze to use and easy to carry – weighing only 6-pounds. Though this slim lightweight design can be deceptive, the Bissell Pet steam mop has a remarkably large capacity water tank (16 Oz). With 1,500 watts of power, it takes about 30-seconds to generate steam from startup and there are three steam settings, selected using touch controls on the handle.
There are quite a few handy features that are ideal for cleaning up after pets. The flip down scrubber is wonderful if you need to get rid of hard stubborn dirt, like dried pet mess. It also includes Odor Eliminating Fragrance Discs. So, it’s bye-bye pet odors, hello fresh clean home.
If you’re after a whole lot of extra cleaning gadgets, this Bissell model won’t impress you much. You don’t get any of the handy attachments that you would with their more expensive models. If you want attachments for cleaning grout, a window cleaner, or a clothing steamer, the Bissell 19404 Pet Steam Mop is not going to be your best option.
The bottom line is that you’re getting legendary Bissell quality at a blissfully low price. This means none of the bells and whistles, just the basics. As a remarkably capable floor steamer for a home with pets, I really can’t fault this Bissell model. It appears as though thousands of customers agree with me on that. Of more than 1,000 reviews on Amazon, the Bissell 19404 received an average rating of 4.1-stars, with a very impressive 4.6-stars for hardwood floors.
2. Steam Mop Cleaner ThermaPro
The ThermaPro steam mop comes as a delightful surprise. As I’m not familiar with the brand, and the price seems too good to be true, I did a little extra research to see what the catch might be. Customer reviews all seem to rave about this product. You’re certainly getting a lot for your money. Despite being one of the cheapest steam cleaners, it has just about every attachment one can think of. This is probably the best value for money steam mop you’ll ever find.
The general design of the ThermaPro is nothing short of superb. It has a beautifully slim and incredibly lightweight body, weighing a mere 2.2 LBS. The canister is detachable, making for an easy to use handheld steam cleaner with a good capacity of 11.5 OZ., providing roughly 20 -25 minutes of use from one tank of water.
It has 3 steam modes and takes only 30-seconds to produce super-heated steam. Best of all, you have the versatility of a multi-function steam appliance. Included in the kit are every size and type of scrubbing brush you’ll ever need, a clothes tool, window cleaner, scraping tool, and a bunch of flat surface accessories. They’ve even included an extra set of microfiber pads. These pads are easily machine washable, so this should all leave you in good standing for quite a long time.
It’s seldom that cheap appliances impress me much. Though, in the case of the ThermaPro, I had to put my bias aside and admit that this is a remarkable product. I’m not too sure if the quality is of the same standard as high-end Shark steam cleaners or some of the other top-brands. Though one thing’s for sure, the ThermaPro is by no means cheap junk and you’re getting attachments that can compare to the most expensive options. Bottom line; this could easily be the bargain of the century.
3. Bissell PowerFresh Slim
For an incredibly versatile Bissell steam cleaner, the PowerFresh Slim is not at all expensive. For even better value, the PowerFresh Slim + Accessory bundle on Amazon is really fantastic. I’m torn between this model and the Shark Genius as to which is the best steam mop in this review. I think all the extra attachments and versatility of the PowerFresh Slim has me leaning toward this one. It’s a really great product.
As is to be expected, the steam mop has all the hallmarks of Bissell quality and excellent design. It has a detachable canister for easy cleaning of more than just floors. A wonderful, yet very simple bonus is that you can use the mop extension wand without the floor cleaning pads. This allows you use any of the many attachments to clean up to ceiling height – perfect for cleaning and deodorizing curtains.
The PowerFresh Slim is fairly lightweight (6.4 LBS) and wonderfully easy to maneuver with swivel steering. Yet it’s fully capable of cleaning a large home with ease, thanks to a 13” cleaning head and very reasonable 12 OZ. water tank. You also have the added versatility of steam on demand. The kit includes an incredible array of very useful attachments: bristle brush, fabric steamer, clothing attachment, flat surface scraper, grout tool, and a very handy angled concentrator tool. For extra convenience the tools clip onto the machine, so they’re always where you need them, and it has a wall mount bracket for convenient storage.
The Bissell PowerFresh Slim would certainly be the pick of the bunch of the steam cleaners we’re reviewing here. Like so many, I have the utmost respect for this brand, and this particular model is a cut above the rest. It’s wonderfully easy to use, powerful, and has an incredible array of attachments, all at a very reasonable price for an appliance of this caliber.
4. Light N Easy Steam Mop Cleaner
This steam cleaner is definitely on the higher end of the scale and is priced alongside the best brand steam mops. Make no mistake, it’s not amongst the most expensive, similar in price to Bissell PowerFresh (reviewed above). Though you don’t get all the attachments that the Bissell has to offer. None the less, for excellent performance and quality, the Light n Easy scores top marks, 4.4 stars from more than 2,000 Amazon customer reviews is something to brag about.
Clever design and exceptional functionality make this product truly deserving of the many accolades it has received. It is lightweight, at 6.4-pounds, with an above average 11.5” mop base and a handy 7.8” pad for steaming upholstery and clothing. The handheld steamer detaches with a simple click and release mechanism. Combined with a flexible hose, it makes for versatile cleaning anywhere in the home.
Attachments are limited to a garment steamer that works well on any other fabric or hard above floor surfaces. There are no special scrubbers, grout tools, or scrapers. The Light n Easy steam mop has 3 power settings and an automatic steam control. The latter has been met with mixed reactions, I’m not too sure if it is actually an advantage. A sensor detects when the handle is in the upright position or tilted. When the handle is upright, the steam stops and automatically starts again when the handle is tilted to a normal working position. In theory, this should be great, you won’t waste water when you stop mopping. Though I don’t see this as being much better than a steam on demand touch button on the handle. Several users say that this function is erratic. You may have to push it back and forth to get the steam going. When using the handheld steamer, you usually have to jiggle it about a bit to activate the steam. This isn’t much of an inconvenience, but kind of defeats the purpose of easy to use automation. It might be easier to just press a button to activate or deactivate the steam.
In the end, the minor issue with the automation cannot detract from the fact that this is a remarkable, very versatile, steam mop. I haven’t reviewed many products that have received as much praise as this one has, as is evident by the rave customer reviews from thousands of users.
5. Shark Genius Hard Floor Cleaning System
I will always be one of the first to rave about any Shark product. Not only are these guys amongst the best when it comes customer service and satisfaction, their design and quality ranks amongst the very best. So, even though the Shark Genius S5003D is fairly basic, with no fancy gadgets, it is a great machine. You could pay the same for a steam mop with a whole lot of attachments and fancy features, but it won’t be a Shark steam mop. Not everyone will agree, but I feel that brand reputation counts for a lot.
I’m sure some will find it a little disappointing that the Shark genius does not have a detachable steam unit for above floor cleaning. Many will also miss all the extra attachments for special cleaning situations. The Shark genius has none of these. Instead, it has one of the best floor mop heads ever invented, that’s the genius of its design. The dual-sided dirt grip mop pads have an uncanny way of lifting stubborn dirt from the floor without leaving a scratch or a smudge. This means that you don’t really need any scrubbing brushes, the Genius mop head does this perfectly and is still gentle enough for wood floors and laminates. If you need that extra cleaning power, a booster steam spray is at your fingertips. The Touch-Free technology is something that’s unique to the Shark Genius. You can attach or detach the mop head with the touch of a button, no need to get your hands dirty. The pads are washable and can be reused many times.
The water tank isn’t all that big, but still sufficient at 11.8-ounces. You have three steam settings with electronic controls. It’s also wonderfully lightweight, only 5.78 pounds, and has a very convenient 22’ cord. As I’ve come to expect from Shark, customer reviews have been nothing short of amazing. People love how easily and effortlessly this steam mop lifts even the most stubborn dirt from any type of floor.
You’re not getting any extra attachments when you buy the Shark Genius S5003D. You are, however, getting one of the very best steam mops. The Genius mop head is no gimmick, it’s a real time saver. You don’t need to stop and change over to a scrubber, because the regular mop removes the toughest dirt without any effort, and it won’t harm your delicate floor surfaces.
6. iwoly M11 Steam Mop Cleaner
The iwoly M11 Steam mop is probably one of the best options if you’re looking for a steam mop under $100. Sure, you can find many that cost less, but this is a quality product and it includes a carpet steam cleaning function. On the face of things, this looks like a rather chunky steam cleaner and it weighs more than most, at 7.85 pounds. But there’s a good reason for this, the bulky mop head can switched over to carpet glide mode. This versatility in being a steam mop and carpet cleaner is the biggest advantage to this appliance.
Like the Nice n Easy Steam mop, this model also has the automatic steam or standby mode, depending on the handle position. Though I haven’t heard any complaints about this system being erratic on the iwoly M11. I suppose it isn’t as complicated, as the iwoly doesn’t have a detachable canister for handheld steaming. So, you don’t have that extra convenience of above floor cleaning, but you do have reliable automation. It has 2 electronically controlled steam settings.
There are no extra attachments supplied with the iwoly and it is only a floor cleaner. The real advantage is that you’re getting a steam mop and carpet cleaner in one, easy to use appliance. Best of all, it’s really affordable and incredibly well made.
I know that tech specs don’t always make much sense to appliance buyers. These can often be more confusing than helpful. To this end, I’ll also include a steam mop buying guide to help you find what you’re looking for. Some features may look impressive on paper, but actually serve very little purpose for your individual needs. You may end up wasting your money on stuff you don’t need, while some steam mops could fall short of your expectations. Before you head off to Amazon and click on the first steam mop that appears to be the best, get the facts and make an informed decision. That’s why we’re here, to help you spend your hard earned cash on a product that’s going deliver the goods and is perfect for your needs. Trust me, we’ve spent countless hours researching the best steam mops, so that you don’t have to.
Steam Mop Buying Guide
If you’re still unsure which of the steam mops that we’ve reviewed is going to be your best option, this section of the article should help with your decision. In the steam mop buyers guide, I’m going to unpack the details of buying a steam mop. I’ll describe the various features and functions, so you can see which are the best for your circumstances.
Do You Need a Steam Mop?
A steam mop is often called an electric mop. I suppose this is logical, it’s a mop that uses electricity. But there is a difference between an electric mop and a steam mop. An electric mop has a water tank, and rotating cleaning heads that can accommodate various pads and brushes for different types of cleaning. You use water and detergent, just as you would using a conventional manual mop. The only real difference between an electric mop and a manual mop, is that an electric motor does all the hard work for you and there’s no bending over a bucket. In the end, these appliances use water and detergent to clean your floor and you have to wait for the floors to dry, or use a dry mop once you’re done cleaning, before the floor is usable.
A steam mop heats the water to the point that it produces super-heated steam, usually around 230°F (110°C). There are several advantages to using steam to clean your floors. The steam is almost dry and leaves little to no water on the floor. This won’t damage wooden floors and you can walk on the floor almost immediately after cleaning. Steam is incredibly powerful at cleaning away stubborn dirt and requires no detergent. Steam also sanitizes as it cleans, killing 99.9% of all bacteria and mold.
There are all sorts of attachments that can very useful and I’ll discuss this in detail later.
What to Look for in a Steam Mop
Of the many specifications listed for steam mops, some are more important than others. Some may be essential for your needs. Others may be a nice luxury, but not all that important, and some may be of no use to you and, possibly, a waste of money. So, take some time to consider the features and specifications before you make the final decision.
Any appliance is all about the power they use vs what they deliver. Steam mops can draw anything from 1,000W to more than 1,500W. This means that they are all quite heavy on electricity, similar to a vacuum cleaner. Obviously a 1,000W steam mop will be more economical than a 1,500W machine. But it needs to have the power to heat the steam and maintain the steam as you work. So, an under-powered machine may not be the best.
If a steam mop has a large capacity, it will generally use more electricity. A smaller machine won’t need as much power. If you see an electric mop with a large mop head and water tank, be weary if it’s rated at around 1,000W. You may end up regretting your purchase. An under-powered steam mop will take longer to heat the water before you can use it; and may not be able to supply a constant supply of steam as you work. If the heating unit can’t reheat the water fast enough, you’ll end up with hot water, instead of steam.
The size of steam mop will depend very much on your needs. There’s the physical size and weight of the machine to consider. Obviously, a heavy steam mop isn’t going to be great if you have to take it up or down stairs all the time. The size and shape of the steam mop would be a consideration with regards to storage space and maneuvering it around the home.
Probably, the most important size factor to consider is that of the actual mop head. The cleaning path of a steam mop can vary from around 10” to about 13”. Cleaning large open floors will be done more efficiently with a large cleaning head. Conversely, if you need to clean in between furniture and the floor is quite cluttered, a smaller mop would be beneficial.
The size of the water tank is not critical, it’s more a matter of convenience. A larger tank will require less frequent filling if you intend working for longer times. You can expect anything from 15-minutes cleaning time up to 30-minutes or a little more, depending on the size of your water tank.
Steam on Demand
It’s no just the size of the water tank that affects your working time. A constant flow of steam is probably the most common way that steam mops work. This means that the steam is activated from the moment you switch the machine on until you switch it off. If you stop or pause while you’re cleaning, say to move something, the steam continues. This means that you may get very little cleaning done before refilling the tank, especially if you have to stop mopping frequently as you work.
A steam on demand feature allows to turn the steam on or off as you wish. This is usually controlled by a button on the handle that you press to activate or deactivate the steam. Some work automatically, by detecting the handle position. When the handle is in the upright position, it won’t produce steam.
Another handy steam function is a booster spray, also activated by a button on the handle. Some steam mops have an additional steam jet that will add extra steam when needed. You’ll use this when the normal supply of steam isn’t powerful enough for particularly stubborn dirt. This can save time, as you won’t have to move over the same spot several times to remove the dirt.
Steam Mop Attachments
A detachable canister, that allows you to use the steam mop as a handheld unit for above floor cleaning adds a lot of versatility. This, in conjunction with the type of accessories you use, can add value to your steam mop.
Scrubbers and Scrapers
Many steam mops are supplied with scrubbing brushes of various sizes. These can very useful for removing unusually tough dirt, stains, and even old paint. Different size brushes offer the added versatility of getting into tight spaces, like corners, inside closets, or under stairs.
Some brushes are designed specifically to clean grout. These allow you to clean away soap scum and mold from places like your shower. Scrapers are also handy for getting rid of tough dirt, grime, and old paint from any hard surface.
A steam mop with a clothing attachment allows you to use steam to remove wrinkles from your garments. They can also remove stains at the same time. Steaming your clothes, instead of ironing, has its advantages. Steam is gentle on the fabric and won’t scorch delicate material, like silk. It is usually quicker and easier to use steam; you can remove wrinkles while the garment is hanging.
Cleaning pads for fabric, should not be confused with a clothing attachment. These are similar to the floor mopping pads. They can be used to clean upholstery, curtains and other fabrics. Though fabric attachments don’t fare well on carpets as they are small and may get stuck. Very few steam mops function as a carpet cleaner as well. They need a dual purpose cleaning head to function on both carpets and hard floors.