The Best Steam Broom

Updated on August 17, 2023

After testing 6 steam brooms, we particularly recommend the Black+Decker FSM1616-QS as it offers the best value for money on the market. If you’re looking for a more versatile option, allowing you to wash all types of surfaces, we recommend the Black + Decker SteaMitt FSMH1321JSM-QS because of its many accessories.

This comparison is certified 100% impartial and follows our selection process.

Our choice, Best value

Black+Decker Steam-mop Lift&Reach FSM1616-QS

With variable steam flow, a removable tank and a rectangular head that converts into a triangular head and swivels 180° for better maneuverability in nooks and crannies, this steam mop scores all the right points.

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Black+Decker Steam-mop Lift&Reach FSM1616-QS

This steam mop from Black+Decker boasts an impressive 1600 W, and is easy to handle thanks to its modular head and 180° swivel. In fact, part of the head can be detached from the main rectangular block to form a triangular head, more practical in corners. In our opinion, its handle offers a better grip than that of the Vileda we also tested. However, the absence of a parking mode (allowing the broom to stand upright on its own) detracts from its ergonomics.

When we first used it, we had to wait 20 seconds for it to warm up, but after that, the waiting time dropped to just 15-16 seconds. Its weight of 2.3 kg didn’t seem heavy to us, and we found that the power cable (5 m) fit better than on other models, impeding movement less in practice. On the other hand, its removable 350 ml tank requires regular refilling if you want to clean your entire interior.

There are 3 different steam levels accessible from the handle, which is more practical for a change of floor type along the way in our opinion. Note that the broom comes with 2 cleaning cloths, machine-washable at 60°C. In our tests, they were dry after around 4 hours. Finally, we measured that it emitted a reasonable noise of 56 dB at a distance of 1 m and at maximum power.

 

 

Best mid-range

Black+Decker SteaMitt FSMH1321JSM-QS

To tackle all types of surfaces, this model comes with 12 accessories, including a practical cleaning glove for treating high surfaces, and also offers 3 different steam flow rates.

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Black+Decker SteaMitt FSMH1321JSM-QS

The SteaMitt sets itself apart from the competition by offering a microfiber cleaning glove and other accessories that you use by detaching the tank from the handle, transforming the device into a handheld cleaner. It can be used on all surfaces, including hard floors and carpets, as well as kitchen and bathroom fittings. With such versatility and a particularly fast heat-up time (16 to 18 seconds from the second use), we’ll forgive its slightly weak 1300 W power rating, knowing that you can still adapt the steam output to the surface being cleaned using 3 power levels.

During our tests, the broom managed to clean dried, sticky beer on tiles in 1 to 3 round trips, making it very effective. On the other hand, we found its ergonomics perfectible. Not only did we feel that its weight (2.7 kg) was poorly distributed, but above all we found that it didn’t glide well enough over the floor, making its handling unpleasant. What’s more, it doesn’t include a parking mode, which isn’t very practical. Fortunately, as its main unit is removable, it was easy to fill its large 500 ml reservoir directly from the tap.

Atypically, the approx. 6 m power cord comes out on the left side of the unit (when viewed in the way of use), which is convenient in use (less in the way of left-handers and possible to hold in the hand by right-handers to make moving around easier). Nevertheless, the big weak point of this model is its high noise level (61 dB at 1 m distance at max steam).

 

Cheap alternative

Vileda Steam Plus

Simple to use, it’s the only steam mop in this selection with a parking mode that lets you leave it standing without a stand. It includes 3 mops in its box, offering greater practicality for everyday use.

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Vileda Steam Plus

With 55 dB measured at a distance of 1 m at maximum power, this is the quietest steam cleaner in this selection. During our tests, we found that its triangular head was particularly useful for effective cleaning in nooks and crannies. What’s more, its cloth was just as easy to fit as that of the previous 2 models, since you simply press the head onto it and it holds firmly in place with hooks. And to remove it, simply pull it out.

His 6 m cord is attached lower down on the device, which is convenient in use, as it doesn’t get caught in your legs. On the other hand, you mustn’t pull on it too much when the broom is held upright in its parking mode, as it then tips over very quickly. We also criticize its handle, which doesn’t offer the best grip.

While its 400 ml tank is fixed, you should know that the brand has included a measuring cup in the box, making refilling easier. In addition to 3 microfiber covers washable at 60°C (and already dry after 4 hours), this steam mop comes with a special attachment for carpets and rugs. On paper, it’s not the most powerful model on the market, but its rapid heating (15 seconds from first use) contributes to a formidable quality/small price ratio. In short, this model is ideal for small houses or apartments.

 

Our selection

Our choice, Best valueBest mid-rangeCheap alternative
Black+Decker Steam-mop Lift&Reach FSM1616-QS Black+Decker SteaMitt FSMH1321JSM-QS Vileda Steam Plus
With variable steam flow, a removable tank and a rectangular head that converts into a triangular head and swivels 180° for better maneuverability in nooks and crannies, this steam mop scores all the right points. To tackle all types of surfaces, this model comes with 12 accessories, including a practical cleaning glove for treating high surfaces, and also offers 3 different steam flow rates. Simple to use, it's the only steam mop in this selection with a parking mode that lets you leave it standing without a stand. It includes 3 mops in its box, offering greater practicality for everyday use.
£ 131.44 on Amazon See the price on Amazon See the price on Amazon

 

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How did we test?

In order to test the steam mops, we started by assembling each one (inserting the handle and placing the mop) and checking whether adding water was done simply (presence of a measuring cup, removable reservoir, reservoir doesn’t leak…). Next, we timed how long each model took to preheat (on first use, but also on subsequent uses). When information was not given, we also measured the length of their power cord..

After which, we used each of them to clean various types of dirt to judge their effectiveness: soy sauce, sweet and sour sauce, footprints, dried and sticky beer. Obviously, steam washing doesn’t remove solid dirt and isn’t as effective at removing what sticks as a mop with cleaning product would be.

In use, we were also able to give an opinion on the ergonomics of the device (weight, maneuverability, grip of the handle, gliding on the floor, presence of a parking mode, the whole mop takes the steam or just part of it? etc.). Overall, we have to say that none of them shone for formidable ergonomics. Finally, we measured the noise emitted by each model using a sound level meter placed 1 m away from the main unit and at full power.

 

How to choose your steam brush?

Steam cleaners get rid of the toughest stains and disinfect your surfaces by killing the many bacteria on them, all without any products. With this process gaining momentum, the device has come in three formats: the sled model, the steam brooms we’re going to talk about and the handheld steam cleaners.

The steam brooms we tested

The distinguishing feature of a broom model is that it’s compact and primarily designed for floor cleaning. However, it can be difficult to choose a quality model that is suited to your needs.

To help you with your purchase, here are the first essential criteria to check before acquiring a steam broom:

  • Surface compatibility: most steam sweepers can only be used on hard tile-type floors. Use on parquet or linoleum is not recommended. Some models come with an adapter for carpets and rugs, which require more delicate treatment. There are also some “hybrid” brooms, with accessories for treating surfaces other than floors. In all cases, opt for brooms with adjustable steam flow, and therefore adaptable to different types of surface.

Head of a steam broom

  • Power : corded models are generally more powerful than cordless models, since most of the power is then concentrated on steam flow and not on battery maintenance. On average, between 1500 and 2000 W are recommended, with an average flow rate of 3.5 bar for deep cleaning.
  • Heating time: this depends mainly on the power of the steam mop. The higher the wattage, the faster the heating. Heating time can vary from ten seconds to over a minute. This is an important factor because, if the tank capacity of your steam mop is reduced, it can quickly prove annoying to waste precious minutes waiting for it to heat up again.

Marie times the heating time of a steam broom

  • Autonomy : this depends on the capacity of its tank. The average is around a 500 ml tank, guaranteeing autonomy of around 20 minutes. However, it can also vary according to the power and quantity of water used in the steam production process. For cordless models, you also need to take into account the autonomy/recharge time. On the whole, it’s rare to see devices take longer than 20 minutes.
  • Ease of use and maneuverability : ideally, opt for a device with a removable reservoir, weighing no more than 2.5 kg, and fitted with an ergonomic, height-adjustable handle. Check the size and shape of the head: triangular, for easier access to corners, and rectangular, for faster cleaning. In the same idea, if you’ve opted for a variable-power device, the various adjustment knobs must be legible, accessible and easily adjustable.

Setting up the tank of a steam broom

  • Maintenance: while it gets the job done faster, your steam mop requires more maintenance than your floorcloth. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions, to preserve it for many years. Preferably choose a device with an anti-scale filter, but clean it after each use. If the steam mop has washable pads (most do), rinse them at least once after use, and always dry them thoroughly to avoid any risk of mildew.

 

Other steam brooms we recommend

Shark Klik N’ Flip S6003EU (€117.45 at time of publication): A solution for larger spaces, but noisy. Although it doesn’t have everything going for it, we still liked this model for its double-sided use. So, when you’ve already cleaned part of your floors, you can simply turn the mop head to its other side to enjoy a clean mop to finish your chore. This opens up the possibility of cleaning larger areas. During our tests, we noted that it really did produce continuous steam, even a little too much, since there was a little water on the floor at maximum power (3 levels available). Unfortunately, however, it wasn’t very effective, as we had to make up to 5 return trips to remove the stickiest traces (dried beer). Nevertheless, handling seemed a little better than others, with the weight (2.7 kg) more evenly distributed. Admittedly, the 8 m cord does get in the way, but that’s often the case with this type of device. The cloth was easy to put on and take off, slipping easily around the tabs provided. It can be machine washed at 40°C, but colored stains won’t come out easily (as has been the case with all models). Finally, its major drawback is its very high noise level of 76 dB (at a distance of 1 m on max steam).

 

Other steam brushes tested

Bissel PowerFresh LiftOff 1897N (€135.15 at time of publication): Despite being the quietest of the models tested, we preferred to leave this steam mop out of our selection because of its lack of practicality (the most painful to place/remove the mop, the shape of the mop means it washes a little less well in the machine than the others, the steam release button you have to constantly press, the weight…).

Polti Vaporetto SV620_Style (€141.00 at time of publication): As well as being the least ergonomic (not maneuverable, doesn’t glide well on the floor, heavy and only 12 to 20 cm wet on the 31-cm-wide mop), this model produced virtually no steam in use (even when waiting for more than 5 minutes of warm-up time). It emits a pumping hum, barely interspersed from time to time with a steam noise for 5 to 10 seconds, before resuming the hum for the next 45 to 60 seconds.

 

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