The best steam cleaner comes designed to banish bacteria, and they can be instrumental tools when it comes to keeping your homes clean, safe, and germ-free. Heat treatment is very effective for killing viruses as well, and you can use it to lift out stains and sanitize your carpet, clothing, furniture, upholstery, mattresses, pillows, and any water-safe fabric.
If you take the time to compare products, the best steam cleaner is even versatile enough to work well on ovens, sealed wooden and tile flooring and walls, windows, rugs, and carpets.
A high-quality steam cleaner needs nothing besides water from your tap to work, and it doesn’t require you to add chemical products or detergents to work well. If you’re curious as to what the best steam cleaners are, take a look at our review roundup and our buying guide.
- 1. McCulloch Heavy Duty Steam Cleaner
- 2. BISSELL Little Green ProHeat Portable Cleaner
- 3. Shark Lift-Away Pro Steam Pocket Mop
- 4. Dupray Neat Steam Cleaner
- 5. PurSteam Handheld Pressurized Steam Cleaner
- 6. Steamfast SF-370 Canister Steam Cleaner
- 7. Wagner Spraytech Steam Cleaner
- 8. Dr. Purifier Handheld Steam Cleaner
- 9. PurSteam ThermaPro 10-in-1
- 10. Bissell PowerSteamer 3-in-1 Steam Mop
- How to Choose the Best Steam Cleaner
- Four Reputable Steam Cleaner Brands
- Best Steam Cleaner Buying Considerations
1. McCulloch Heavy Duty Steam Cleaner
The best steam cleaners has a very deep cleaning ability paired with a high level of versatility. It’s the best multi-purpose steam cleaner that works on a host of items. You can use it to remove water stains from appliances, lighten up your grout lines, refresh your furniture, lift stains out of your carpet, and clean your oven. The hot steam sanitizes when it cleans to leave your home clean.
Once you turn this steam cleaner on, it’ll start producing steam in eight minutes. This may seem like a longer warm up time, but it’ll produce steam cleaning for up to 45 minutes on a single fill to give you a great amount of cleaning capability. It comes equipped with 18 versatile accessories that allow you to clean more thoroughly, and it has a 15.7 foot power cord to extend your reach. Finally, you get a two-year warranty.
- US-based customer service team
- Steam cleaning hose is nine feet long
- Comes safety-tested and certified
- Gaskets are cheaper and prone to melting
- Button to release the steam cleaning is very stiff
- Plug gets hot with extended use
2. BISSELL Little Green ProHeat Portable Cleaner
Bissell’s Little Green cleaner uses suction and hot water to lift stains out of your carpet while replacing the need to pull out a full-sized scrubber each time you want to clean a small area. It works well to pull stains out of rugs, upholstery, carpet, pillows, furniture, mattresses, automotive upholstery, your appliances like ovens and much more. The onboard heating element is effective at quickly heating up the water for cleaning in under 30 seconds.
There are two tanks that are very easy to clean, and the cleaner has a very portable and lightweight design that makes it easy to move. The tanks can hold 48 ounces of water, and this is more than enough to tackle small spots. You get a flexible hose to extend your reach with this steam cleaner, spraying crevice tool, and a durable stain brush to help you get the job done quickly and efficiently. The clear tanks allow you to monitor the water levels as you use it.
- Available with several cleaning solutions as a package deal
- Built-in hot water heater works quickly in under 30 seconds
- Certified frustration-free packaging
- Hose is difficult to clean
- Nozzle isn’t very durable
- Tank can leak when you first fill it
3. Shark Lift-Away Pro Steam Pocket Mop
If you want to quickly clean and sanitize your hard floors, the Shark Lift-Away Pro Pocket Mop is one of the best steam cleaners available. Falling into a mid-price range, it comes equipped with a double-sided mopping pad that clips securely to the bottom of the mop. This is a slightly bigger mop, and this makes it very quick and easy to cover a lot of ground and cover large swaths of your hardwood, tile, or laminate flooring on the hard floors with a single swipe.
There is a removable handheld steamer attached to the body of this steam cleaner that allows you to clean and sanitize furniture, rugs, carpeting, upholstery, and more. You’ll get three levels of clean that can easily scrub, mop, and dust your floors. The three-foot hose gives you nice reach, and you can machine wash your dirt grip pads between uses to keep them looking nice. The touch-free pad release keeps your hands clean when you want to remove it to wash it.
- Comes with dual sided dirt grip pads
- Has a handheld steamer in the body
- Get three levels of intelligent cleaning capabilities
- Hose isn’t long enough
- Handle may be too tall for shorter people
- Challenging to attach the pad to the mop
4. Dupray Neat Steam Cleaner
If you want a more futuristic tool, the Neat Steam Cleaner from Dupray is the best budget pick on the market. It has a unique cube design wrapped in a sleek white outer shell. The interior is a cylinder steam cleaner that comes with a host of accessories you can use to tackle big and small projects around the house, like deep cleaning your bathroom. It has a 1.6-liter water tank that ensures you won’t have to fill it too often between jobs, and you get roughly 50 minutes of cleaning per fill.
This steam cleaner can help you quickly clean your floors, remove stuck-on debris from your countertops and appliances, restore your grout to pristine condition, remove limescale from your bathroom, and bring back the shine to your oven. It does take around 20 minutes for the water to warm up, but it also comes with a two-year limited warranty from the date of purchase.
- Heats water up to 135°F
- Has a compact and sleek design
- Gives you 50 minutes of cleaning time per fill
- Longer wait time to heat the water
- Has no water level indicator light
- Can be difficult to contact customer support
5. PurSteam Handheld Pressurized Steam Cleaner
PurSteam’s steam cleaner comes with premium quality components that won’t wear out or break down with repeated use. The hot pressurized steam it releases easily eliminates stains, grime, grease, and bed bugs without using any harsh chemicals to get the job done. It’s a fast and effective way to take on tough jobs around the house like sanitizing your furniture, and it can easily lift stains out of your rugs, carpet, and upholstery.
The portable and lightweight design allows you to move it from room to room without a problem, and this steam cleaner comes with a 9.8 foot cord that is long enough for indoor and outdoor use. It works on hard floors, tile, ceramic, hardwood, washable wallpaper, cotton, wool, granite, and laminate tiles. It heats up very quickly in three to four minutes, and you get a nine piece accessory set with heavy-duty attachments in each purchase.
- Warms up in three or four minutes
- Comes with heavy-duty accessories like a crevice tool and more
- Very portable and lightweight
- Can leak when in use
- Trigger is very rigid
- Instructions are not clear
6. Steamfast SF-370 Canister Steam Cleaner
The steam cleaner by Steamfest comes with a 15-foot power cord that won’t hinder your movement, and the integrated cord wrap, 6.5-foot hose, carrying handle, and wheels give you excellent reach for those tight spaces. The water tank will heat up in just eight minutes, hold 48 ounces of water per fill, and it can give you up to 45 minutes of steam cleaning time. You’ll be able to sanitize and deep clean without the use of harsh cleaning agents or chemicals.
When you buy this, you’ll get 15 versatile accessories that include a jet nozzle, utility brushes, mop pads, fill cup, scrubbing tools, squeegee, and much more. This cleaner tackles stains, grime, and grease on appliances, laminate, wood flooring, granite, grout, ceramic tile, autos, grills, and more. The customer service team is in the United States, and you get a full warranty that lasts for two years beyond the date of purchase.
- Has a very sturdy and stable base
- Comes with a handle and wheels for easy movement
- 45 minutes of steaming time per fill
- Accessories are hard to find
- Not strong enough for hard water stains
- Body gets very warm with extended use
7. Wagner Spraytech Steam Cleaner
Wagner Spraytech’s steam cleaner gives you natural and chemical-free cleaning power that easily lifts away grime and dirt on several areas of your home. It works wonderfully for wallpaper removal, and you get a specific attachment to help you tackle this process. It has a wide base with larger wheels that make it easy to move it from project to project. It reaches up to 212°F, holds 48 ounces of water, and it’ll run for up to 45 minutes between fills to take on those larger projects.
This steam cleaner has several useful and quality attachments like a squeegee and extension tubes included that allow you to clean your showers, floors, toilets, sinks, countertops, appliances and more with ease. It features a very user-friendly design that allows you to get the steam cleaner up and running within a few minutes. The red light switches off to indicate that it’s ready to go.
- Can clean up to 20% faster than other tools
- Has a special wallpaper attachment
- Very bright colors with a sleek design
- Slightly heavier at over 13 pounds
- Trigger lock is very difficult to pull
- Might not be powerful enough for very messy jobs
8. Dr. Purifier Handheld Steam Cleaner
This is the best multi-purpose steam cleaner from Dr. Purifier that’ll help you take on your daily disinfection and household cleaning projects. You can safely use it on your countertops, shower, sinks, refrigerators, ovens, windows, furniture, flooring, and small miscellaneous items like your litter box, car seats, grills, mattress, toys, and bedding. This best multi-purpose cleaner is 100% chemical free and safe to use in these areas, and it leaves no residue.
There is a safety lock on the handle to prevent accidental burns, and the end has a safety cap installed. The nine-foot power cord makes it easy to move around the room without stopping, and you get a very portable and lightweight design. It emits 1050W of power, and the steam’s temperature ranges between 250°F and 270°F in just 15 to 20 minutes. Finally, there are nine accessories included in each purchase that help to extend your cleaning capabilities.
- Comes with nine accessories
- Has a safety lock on the handle
- 100% chemical-free and leaves no residue
- Safety cap is very thin
- Guide is confusing
- Accessories are very thin
9. PurSteam ThermaPro 10-in-1
The ThermaPro 10-in-1 unit is great for tackling both large and small projects around your home or business. The built-in handheld steamer allows you to clean much more efficiently, and it has a flexible hose with attachments to help you reach higher without having to bend or stretch. It gives you 99.9% sanitation without using any chemicals, and it has a special surface scrubber attachment that lets you clean hard floors and soft surfaces.
There are three adjustable modes on this steam cleaner that help you change your steam levels to match your project’s needs. It has an 11.5-ounce reservoir that will give you between 20 and 25 minutes of cleaning time per fill. It’s safe to use on any surface, and the cleaner has a free replacement policy. You also get a two-year warranty from the date of purchase to protect you against defects and damage.
- Cost-effective option
- Uses high-quality components
- Gives you 20 to 25 minutes of run time per fill
- Has a more narrow head
- Puts out too much uncontrolled steam
- Not heavy enough for stuck-on stains
10. Bissell PowerSteamer 3-in-1 Steam Mop
The Bissell PowerSteamer rounds out our list. It can blast away grease, grime, dirt, mold, and stains across a broad range of outdoor and indoor surfaces. This is a heavy-duty machine that works well on automobiles, grills, workshop floors and counters, ATVs, boats, patio furniture, and sealed flooring. It’s an upright steam cleaner that quickly and easily transforms into a handheld unit and an extended-reach unit.
You’ll get rid of 99.9% of the germs without any chemicals, and it has several different steam modes you can tailor to your job. This has an on-demand trigger that lets you control how much steam you release and how powerful it is. The wall mount system allows for convenient storage, and it has on-board accessory storage to keep everything together. There are 29 accessories included in each purchase.
- Converts from an upright unit to a handheld
- Has a nice storage bag
- Comes with 29 different accessories
- Have to hold the trigger the entire time you use it
- Accessories aren’t the highest quality
- Wall mount system is flimsy
How to Choose the Best Steam Cleaner
When you start shopping for a steam cleaner, it’s important to be able to narrow down your choices right from the start. One of the first things you want to do is decide which type of steam cleaner you want to buy. There are four broad categories, and picking one or two will take away several of your choices so it’s not so overwhelming. The categories are:
- Handheld Steam Cleaner – A handheld model is smaller than other steam cleaners, more portable, and they’re usually cost-effective. However, you sacrifice a larger water compartment, power, and run time. It works well to get small stains out of your carpeting or around the house, and they’re very easy to store when you don’t need it.
- Mop – Steam mops work well for cleaning hard floors or hardwood floors like wood or tile. They look like stick vacuums and are very lightweight. These mops are usually very affordable, and you can get them with a large variety of accessories. They come in different sizes, and some even have the capability of converting to a handheld unit.
- Cylinder Steam Cleaner – Also called a canister steam cleaner, this unit is slightly larger and more stable than the first two. It has a canister on wheels that attaches to the steam head using a long hose. You can take on larger cleaning jobs due to the bigger water tank, but it is slightly bulkier and more difficult to maneuver in tight spaces.
- Vapor Steam Cleaner – Vapor cleaners work very similar to cylinder cleaners. It uses dry heat instead of wet heat, and this is what sets it apart. You won’t have to wait for your floor to dry with this, but it tends to be on the more expensive side than the other three options. It’s also slightly larger, and this can make cleaning tight areas challenging.
Steam cleaners work well on both indoor and outdoor projects, and they’re powerful enough to give you excellent results without any streaks or water spots.
Four Reputable Steam Cleaner Brands
Once you decide on a type for your steam cleaner, you can narrow it down even more by only picking ones from reputable brands. While there are many available, some are more well-known than others. Getting a reputable brand will help you get into touch with their customer service agents easier if you should have a problem. The brands include:
- Bissell – Bissell has a solid reputation for putting out excellent products like vacuums, scrubbers, and steam cleaners. They offer affordable options, and they have almost every type of steam cleaner available.
- McCulloch – While McCulloch is newer to creating steam cleaners, they have thousands of positive reviews and ratings. They created a heavy-duty steam cleaner that can tackle residential and commercial-grade projects with ease.
- Shark – Known for creating some of the best on the more expensive end of the spectrum, Shark has a great reputation for customer service. They make mops and handheld steamers, and they can take on larger projects.
- PurSteam – Finally, another well-known brand is PurSteam. They produce almost exclusively steam cleaning units, and it’s not hard to find any style you’re after with this brand. They’re known for using quality parts and having a responsive customer care team.
Best Steam Cleaner Buying Considerations
When you’re ready to compare the top models, you should use a specific set of criteria to compare them all. This way, you can discard ones that don’t fit into the box, and this can make shopping a tiny bit faster and easier.
1. Weight and Size
You’ll find the best steam cleaners in a broad range of sizes, weights, and shapes, and the bulkiness depends on which type you choose. Make sure you take a look at your potential steam cleaner’s dimensions and decide if you’re willing to have a bulkier model. If it’s a pain to use your steam cleaner due to the weight or size, this can be a deterrent to ever taking it out.
You have to keep your storage capabilities in mind too. If you have a tiny apartment or home, storage space is at a premium. Chances are, you won’t have the space to store a larger unit. Many people like to tuck it out of sight into a closet between uses.
In a perfect world, the price wouldn’t be an issue. However, it does, and the type you pick out will play a major role. You can find mops or handheld units at very reasonable prices, but the canisters and vapor types tend to be on the higher end. However, these models may work out for more applications, so it’s easy to justify the price.
A lot of the best budget models we reviewed came solidly in the mid-price range, and they’re more than powerful enough to take on household projects. If you plan to use your steam cleaner commercially, be prepared to pay a higher price for it because it’s usually more powerful.
3. Water Tank Size
Even the best steam cleaners will only produce the steam cleaning you need to clean and sanitize when you have a water tank. A smaller steam cleaner has a smaller tank, and this means that you’ll have to refill it more often when you clean grout or other projects. However, they usually heat up faster than the larger units.
Decide if you want a large or small tank and compare them to the various steam cleaner styles. Handheld units and mops usually come with smaller tanks while vapor and cylinder units have bigger tanks and longer run times between refilling and heating.
No matter which style you decide to use, they almost all come with accessories and attachments included in the purchase. If you plan to use your steam cleaner for more than just carpets or routine stains, take a close look at the accessories and attachments. You can get everything from squeegees and upholstery tools to wire brushes and extension handles. The more areas you want to clean, the more attachments or accessories you’ll need.
If your steam cleaner comes with accessories or attachments like an extendable hose or brushes, it broadens your cleaning capabilities.
Double-check and see how much pressure your steam cleaner has and the maximum temperature range for the steam cleaning. This will give you a good idea on the projects it can and can’t take on. The higher temperatures produce a drier steam cleaning and usually put out more pressure to provide a slightly deeper clean that will get rid of germs and bacteria. They may cost more, but you’re usually getting a better clean with them.
6. Ease of Use
Most steam cleaners are relatively straightforward and easy to use. The lighter models are usually more streamlined and easier to work with than the larger models. However, the larger models have more power associated with them. If you’re worried about not being able to handle a heavier or larger unit, it’s a good idea to stick to the lighter ones.
No matter which steam cleaner you choose, it’ll most likely run quieter than a vacuum. Look and see how many decibels the product lists because this will give you a good idea on the noise levels. You can also take a look at the reviews and see what people say about the noise when they use it.
Steam cleaners are a fast and efficient way to kill germs and bacteria around your home and make it safer for your family.
The best steam cleaners can help you tackle a large range of projects around your home while giving you the peace of mind that comes with knowing you’re killing germs and bacteria in a safe and effective way. Our short best steam cleaner guide and review round-up ensure you’ll have everything you need to make a solid selection based on your wants and needs.