A worthy upgrade to your bucket and mop, the best steam cleaners will provide a deep clean, removing stubborn stains as well as grease and grime. No doubt they'll leave your home looking spic, span and sparkling. Many steam cleaners kill up to 99.9 per cent of bacteria, and the best bit is that all they require is water — no cleaning solution or harsh chemicals. So, we've written a helpful buyer's guide on what makes the best, the best.
Last chance Black Friday deals on steam cleaners
We interrupt the regularly scheduled content to let you know that although Black Friday is over, there's still time to grab some last-chance Black Friday deals on steam cleaners for floors. Want to grab a bargain? These are the retailers that still have the best deals live, or keep scrolling to continue reading our buyer’s guide.
£10 off: Vax Steam Fresh Combi Multifunction Steam Cleaner, WAS £90, NOW £80
27% off: Polti Vaporetto Smart 100B, Steam Cleaner, WAS £249, NOW £183.90
20% off: Philips Handheld Steamer 3000 Series, WAS £49.99, NOW £39.99
17% off: BISSELL Vac and Steam, WAS £179.99, NOW £149.99
It's not just hard floors they clean, too, as many models come with different attachments so that you can steam clean just about every appliance and surface in your household, whether that be your cooker or your carpet. They're also ideal for disinfecting furnishings in your household that you can't clean as regularly, such as your curtains, sofa and mattress. You can get steam cleaners for clothes, upholstery and more.
There's a whole host of steam cleaners to suit a range of budgets and different tasks, so we've found something for everyone. Do your windows look filthy? Well, consider a window steam cleaner to tackle any grime. Whether it be a steam cleaner for tiles or primed to tackle your grimy windows, we've found the best steam cleaners. You'll even spot some handheld portable steamers from brand favourites, including Shark, Vax and many more.
Best steam cleaners at a glance:
• Best all-around steam cleaner: Vax Steam Fresh Combi Multifunction Steam Cleaner - view on Argos
• Best handheld steam cleaner: Beldray BEL0701TQN 10-in-1 - view on Amazon UK
• Best window steam cleaner: Kärcher Window Vac WV5 Premium - view on Very
The best steam cleaners
Best all-around steam cleaner
Whether it's hard floors, carpets, windows or even your oven, the Vax S86-SF-C can really clean it
- Extremely versatile — can be used on hard floors, carpets, windows and household appliances
- Long lead allows you to clean decent surface area
- Can be a little fiddly to fill up due to small fill hole
Best powerful steam cleaner
The Polti Vaporetto has the largest tank capacity in our roundup, this steam cleaner is ideal for
- Ideal for cleaning a multitude of surfaces
- Powerful with a large tank, ideal for deep cleaning
- Heaviest steam cleaner in our round-up
Best handheld steam cleaner
Beldray is a trusted brand in the world of household appliances. After all, they have been
- Great value for money
- Takes a while to heat up
Best garment steam cleaner
A garment steam cleaner is a nifty piece of equipment to give clothes a little refresh and
- Quicker than using an iron, as it heats up in 30 seconds
- Safe to use on all fabrics
- Great for travelling
- Takes longer to remove creases from larger garments
Best window steam cleaner
This steam window cleaner from Karcher may be pricey, but it's definitely cheaper than paying a
- Easy to use, saving time and money in the long run
- Can be used on multiple smooth surfaces
- The battery takes quite a while to recharge
Best lightweight steam cleaner
Weighing in at just under 2kg, the Black +Decker steam mop is ideal if you suffer from mobility
- Lightweight and easy to manoeuvre around the home
- Can be used on a range of different surfaces
- Affordable option for those on a budget
- No steam controls
Best vacuum and steam cleaner
When it comes to steam cleaning your floor, it's important you give it a good hoover, and this one
- Multifunctional, saves you doing two jobs
- Very powerful
- Only suitable for hard floors
Which is the best steam cleaner?
While this is personal and comes down to your budget and what you're using your steamer for, for us, it's got to be the Vax S86-SF-C Steam Fresh Combi Multifunction Steam Cleaner. Not only does it have a decent price tag, but it's great value for money, too, as it can clean so many areas in your home. The fact it can turn into a handheld steam cleaner too, really allows it to do it all; upholstery, curtains, kitchen and bathroom appliances — you name it!
We really like the option of having a detergent tank, too, just in case you want to eliminate odours and unleash a little more freshness. Plus, you can start using it in 20 seconds, and it has a two-year guarantee — we don't see what's not to love.
Things to consider when shopping for a steam cleaner
Weight: You may not be too fussed about this initially, but the last thing you'll want to do is be lugging around something heavy. If you suffer from back pain or mobility issues, again, this is something you will want to think about to make it as easy as possible to use.
Water tank capacity: A larger tank will take longer to heat up but will last longer. Whereas a small tank will be quicker to heat up, but you will have to refill it more often. Some steam cleaners have detachable tanks so that you can easily refill them, and with some models, you can do this throughout steaming without having to wait for the device to cool down.
Variable steam options: Some models have a few (the steamer we've included from Polti has four!), while more basic models may only have one. It's therefore important to think about what this steam cleaner is for; do you want it for a really deep clean, or is it to simply keep on top of dirt and grime? If you are looking for something more thorough then having more steam options is probably ideal. Although some steam cleaners can detect the surface, they're on and automatically adjust the amount of steam released accordingly.
Attachments: If you want to save yourself some money in the long run, purchasing a steam cleaner that comes with attachments so that it can be used for lots of different appliances and surfaces could be wise.
What accessories do I need for my steam cleaner?
This is really up to you, but a lot of steam cleaners will come with their own accessory attachments. Steam cleaner mops are the only models that may not come with a lot of accessories, as they don't have a detachable handheld unit, therefore, they usually only come with cleaning pads. It's always a good idea to buy a few of these as backup for any steam cleaner. Some models may have a detergent compartment, so you may want to get some of this. However, it will only provide a nice scent and won't have any extra cleaning benefits.
Bryony Firth-Bernard is a product writer for Yours. On the weekend she loves whipping up new recipes in the kitchen and spending time with her friends and family.