Conquering Messes with the Best Steam Mops

Cleaning your floors can be done in several ways, but steam mops offer more merits; they are more sanitary and quicker. If you’re looking to buy one, we have conducted in-depth research and found the best ones you can pick from.

Sharp Steam Pocket Mop Hard Floor Cleaner with Swivel Steering XL Water Tank (S3501)

Best overall

Sharp Steam Mop cleans and protects floors against bacteria and germs by deploying heated steam in a few seconds. This device has a firm handle and swivels 180 degrees to reach tricky areas.


  • 1200W of power
  • Heats water to wipe floors in 30 seconds
  • It comes with two reusable microfiber pads
  • Eliminates germs and bacteria
  • Ergonomic handle


  • Short cord
  • Some users criticized the size and placement of the water reservoir


Sharp’s steam mop wipes your floors clean with advanced features and sanitizes them by removing contaminants.

With 1200W of power, this device is highly powerful to deliver consistent cleaning results for different floor types. It deploys well-heated steam in about 30 seconds, using it to clean floors in simple mopping movements. Even better, your floors dry quickly in seconds.

It is about 1ft long and has an ergonomic handle promoting firm and convenient hold during use. The device also swivels 18 degrees while working for easy maneuverability to reach tricky areas.

Two microfiber pads (that wipe the floors clean) are included in the package, and we like that both sides of each cleaning pad can be used to mop your floors–so that’s like having four cleaning pads. The pads are also washable, making them reusable and saving you the cost of replacing them.

Since it uses only water with no chemicals, the device provides a safe, natural cleaning process suitable for all floors, including hard floors. Although the cord is advertised as 6ft long, many users have complained its length is too short, with some saying it needs to be one or two feet longer.

Another downside is the size and placement of the water reservoir. Many previous buyers said its 15.2 oz tank capacity was small and placed at the front, the lower end of the device, making it stressful to refill.

Overall, the Sharp Steam Mop is powerful, has dual cleaning pads, and is easy to maneuver, making it an ideal product.

Bissell - Steam Mop and Cleaner - PowerFresh Original - Eliminates 99.9% Of germs & Neutralize odours with Flip-Down Scrubber - White

Runner up

The Bissell Steam Mop is a cleaning device more suitable for light cleaning. It uses a wide mopping pad to clean and sanitize floors and has a disk that releases a spring breeze scent.


  • Digital steam control
  • Wide microfiber mopping pad
  • Releases a fresh fragrance while cleaning
  • Removes germs


  • Does not steam well
  • Short cord


This steam mop from Bissell offers functionality and easy controls to provide the best cleaning results. Although, unlike our top pick, it comes with a single microfiber cleaning pad, the pad is wide enough to offer broad reaches, which ultimately means fast cleaning.

The water tank is directly on the cleaning pad and is firmly attached to the device’s frame with an ejector button to detach it for refills. We like that there’s a handle attached so you can effortlessly carry the reservoir to your bathroom to refill. Its 0.45l tank capacity is a little low, but you may find it perfect for small rooms.

Users will find its digital steam control very convenient, selecting from three steam levels depending on the cleaning task. We also think it’s thoughtful the manufacturers included a fragrance disk that goes inside the mop pad to introduce a fresh, spring breeze scent during use.

This device is very sanitary, getting rid of bacteria and germs naturally without using harmful chemicals. Also, the handle is robust and ensures secure holds and easy maneuverability for reaching corners.

Although it has a 1500W power rating, you may find it more suitable for light cleaning than heavy cleaning. This might result from the device not steaming the water hot enough to wipe off tough stains, as reported by many users. Some users have also complained about its cord length, but you will find this is an issue for a lot of steam mops.

Altogether, Bissell’s steaming mop will make a good purchase for anyone intending to use it for light cleaning.

Shark S1000C Steam Mop, White/Seafoam Blue (Canadian Version), 12.68 fl oz

Budget pick

Recommended for hardwood floors by Shark, the S1000C Steam Cleaner is an affordable device that clears grease and dirt on floors. The device is lightweight, requiring less energy to push.


  • Affordable price
  • Lightweight and comfortable to use
  • Suitable for different floor types
  • Removable and refillable tank


  • It does not produce enough steam
  • The cord length is short


A functional device doesn’t always equate to a high price. With this Shark S1000C Steam Mop, prospective buyers can stay within their budget and still get a good product.

This steam mop’s lightweight design immediately catches your attention, which makes its use super convenient, especially since it requires pumping to heat the water. The tank that holds water is portable and can be removed to fill in the sink, eliminating the need to move the whole unit.

This device uses a cleaning pad capable of wiping off grease and other floor stains. However, you should note it is a dirt grip pad made from cotton and polyester and not a microfiber cleaning pad like our first two picks.

One excellent feature is that the joint between the frame and pad rotates to permit users to clean the nooks and crannies of their rooms. Its 1050W rating is a little on the low side, but that’s understandable considering its low price. Shark recommends using it for hardwood floors, but some users have attested that it works for other floor types, such as laminate floors.

Many users have criticized its low-steam action, which produces just warm water, making it challenging to clear off tough stains. Another issue, as with our other picks, is that the cord length is too short. However, you can solve this by getting an extension cord.

Overall, this steam mop is moderately effective considering its low price, and we think it is best suited for people with small rooms that don’t require heavy cleaning.

Bissell, 2747A PowerFresh Vac & Steam All-in-One Vacuum and Steam Mop

Best premium

Bissell 2747A Steam Cleaner is a compact device that simultaneously vacuums and cleans the floor using microfiber soft and scrubby pads. Also, its digital touch control makes it very easy to use.


  • It provides floor vacuuming and steaming
  • Digital steam controls
  • Compact design
  • It uses microfiber soft and scrubby pads
  • It uses scent discs and demineralized water


  • Few complaints about its steaming
  • Some users said the vacuum is considerably loud


A compact but highly effective device, the Bissell 2747A steam mop performs your cleaning tasks with minimal effort and doesn’t take much of your storage space.

With this device, users can vacuum and steam floors simultaneously or choose to perform each function separately; there are three digital control buttons on the device’s handle to decide this.

Users can use this tool to thoroughly and safely clean hardwood, linoleum, marble, ceramic, and tiled floors, eradicating stains, germs, and bacteria. The steam mop uses two quality cleaning pads made from microfiber to achieve the best cleaning results; the soft microfiber pad for light stains and the microfiber scrubby for tough stains. Both pads are fixed in a detachable pad tray to switch or remove the mop pads for washing.

People who like to keep the air fresh while cleaning would like this mop because it uses demineralized water, available in three fragrances. In addition, you can insert spring breeze disks in the mop pad to improve the room’s scent further.

The dry tank function is also a nice touch, keeping water from the dirty tank so the dirt remains dry and can be removed later. The cyclonic vacuum is powerful and can be relied on, but some users complained it was too loud during use. Similarly, some users didn’t find the device’s steaming function as effective as they would have loved it.

In our opinion, the Bissell 2747A Steam mop is a powerful and sturdy tool that will deliver great results and will be an excellent addition to your cleaning tools.

H2O X5 Steam Mop and Handheld Steam Cleaner For Cleaning Hardwood and Kitchen Tile Floors, Grout Cleaner, Upholstery Cleaner and Carpets

Best of the best

The H2O Steam Cleaner is a portable multi-purpose device that can clean floors, carpets, windows, and more. This handheld cleaning tool is easy to operate and works for several floor types.


  • Multi-purpose
  • Handheld and easy to use
  • No-filter design
  • It comes with dual mop pads and other accessories
  • Leaves fresh scent while cleaning


  • Weak handle


H2O Steam mop is a 5-in-1 multipurpose device that cleans floors, windows, carpets, garments, and furniture, saving users the cost of purchasing different appliances.

It comes with all the accessories necessary to achieve the best cleaning results, such as two microfiber cleaning pads for floors and garments, six small scrubbing brushes (three made from brass and the other half from nylon), scraper tools, long lazer, and many more.

H2O Steam mop has a rating of 1500W that quickly steams up in 30 seconds to deliver three types of steam cleaning. Users must turn the knob on the mop’s sturdy frame below the handle to choose what steam level to work on.

The tool’s unique triangle head is a brilliant touch as it allows the device to get hard-to-reach corners in the room. The device becomes a handheld steamer when the triangle mop head is separated from the frame and replaced with the hose. You can then use it with necessary accessories to clean sinks, windows, stovetops, countertops, and more.

Although its portable design makes it more suitable for small rooms, its long 19ft cord makes it even easier to use across large spaces. The mop operates on a filterless system, so you must remove the pads and then wash and reuse them.

In addition to the steaming process killing bacteria and germs, an exciting feature of this device is that its steaming freshens and deodorizes surfaces it is used on, getting rid of bad smells. Despite these pros, many users complained the steam mop’s handle is flimsy and feels like it will snap under much pressure.

The H2O Steam mop is a fantastic device with endless cleaning applications, making it worth its price.

Steam mop buying guide

While steam cleaning might be a relatively recent concept in housekeeping, the method is more than 150 years old. If you have any doubts about the dirt-lifting power of the steam, you’ll be reassured to know that initially, it was used to clean industrial appliances and machinery. The first domestic steam mops were invented in Italy, and some of the leading manufacturers still come from this country.
steam mop

The glory of steam cleaning

One of the main reasons people switch to steam cleaning is that these appliances run just on water. This allows skipping chemical formulas without sacrificing the tidiness of your floors. If someone in your household is allergic or sensitive to cleaning agents, cleaning with steam is a great alternative.

Furthermore, the steam helps eliminate bacteria, dust mites, and even viruses. You’ll see many manufacturers claiming that up to 99.9% of germs can be killed.

Types of steam mops

From stout canisters to svelte steam mops and compact handhelds, nowadays, there is a steam mop for every kind of mess. Each type has certain advantages, but they have their weaknesses too.

Canister (or cylinder) steam mops

Canister (or cylinder) steam mops visually resemble cylinder vacuums. They have a body on wheels connected to the cleaning head via a flexible hose. These machines boast a higher-capacity water tank and a more powerful steam output. Thus, they are perfect for more extensive cleaning tasks and allow cleaning faster. Canister steam mops are the best choice for owners of large houses; they are also favoured for commercial settings, such as restaurants, hotels, guesthouses, and studios.

Steam mops

Steam mops look similar to upright vacuums. They’re usually lightweight and compact, with highly manoeuvrable heads. They heat quicker than cylinder steamers but have smaller water tanks. Most steam mops have few (if any) accessories, and they are designed for floor cleaning first and foremost. Steam mops take little storage space and are an excellent pick for apartments or smaller homes.

Handheld steam mops

Handheld steam mops are light and small enough to be conveniently carried in one hand. Usually, they have plenty of attachments, perfect for more specific tasks like tiled walls, ovens, handles, acute corners, and so on. However, their steam pressure is weaker, and they have smallish water tanks that need refilling often.

Two-in-one steam mops

Two-in-one steam mops usually are an upright mop with a detachable centre unit that can be used with several attachments. Some others combine vacuuming and steam cleaning in one device, which gets especially handy for carpets. The multi-purpose cleaners excel with their versatility; however, they tend to be costly.

What you should (and shouldn’t) steam clean

On the right type of surface, steam mops are highly effective and versatile. Yet, to make sure you remove just dirt and not the topcoat of varnish or colour of your household items, some caution is needed.

  • Steam cleaning is safe when it comes to cleaning tile and stone floors, windows and mirrors, shower cabins and sinks, tiled walls, and greasy surfaces such as ovens or barbecues. With right attachments, you can also use them on carpets, upholstery, plush toys, car seats, and even for ironing clothes.
  • These appliances are also used to eliminate various pests. Nothing can resist the steam treatment, from fleas and bedbugs to mould, algae, and dust mites. The high temperatures can also kill bacteria and viruses, including SARS-CoV-2. If someone in your family has become infected, this can minimize the exposure risks to others.
  • Finally, steam mops can be used to remove things like glue or chewing gum. This is because the steam gets even into the tiniest cracks and crevices, loosening anything stuck in them.

steam mop usage

However, this means that not all surfaces are steam-proof.

  • Unsealed wooden or cork floors are a definite no-no. The same goes for any material bonded by an adhesive (like laminate or parquet), as steam can loosen the glue. Even resistant materials like linoleum or vinyl can get discoloured or damaged by the high temperatures of a steam mop.
  • Sealed wooden surfaces can get damaged too. This is because the seal rarely is ideal, especially as it starts wearing. And even if your flooring is brand new, it may have minuscule cracks and crevices. When steam is regularly pushed into these crevices, they will expand. And once the moisture gets underneath, undesired effects from bubbling or warping to mildew may occur.
  • Steam cleaning can also damage any other unsealed, polished, or waxed surfaces. Avoid steaming composite surfaces, musical instruments, delicate fabrics, and anything coated with water-based paint.

What to look for in a steam cleaner

Safety first

Most steam mops nowadays feature the automatic shut-off function, which prevents the risk of overheating. Many will also have indicator lights, informing when the water level in the tank is running low. A safety lock on the pistol is important too. It allows locking the trigger and preventing accidental steam release, which might scald the user or someone else.

A non-pressurised boiler is another desirable safety upgrade. It prevents hot water from escaping when you need to refill the machine; thus, you can do it quickly and continue cleaning. On models without the feature, you’ll have to wait for the boiler to cool down before it can be refilled.

Water tank

The tank is the heart of a steam mop, and it will affect every performance aspect. If you buy a canister model, the tank capacity can vary a lot. If the capacity is up to one litre, you can expect the machine to run for 20-30 minutes before it needs refill (the selected power setting will affect this too).

The downsides of a bigger tank are that the heat-up time increases and that the appliance itself must be larger and heavier. If this is not optimal for your needs, another option is looking for a steam mop with a continuous refill.


The refilling process can affect your cleaning experience as much as the capacity. Detachable water tanks are the most convenient. This is especially true after the cleaning is done. If there is some water left in the appliance and you have to empty it, it may be uncomfortable to lift and turn the whole canister.

Watt power

Remember, we mentioned that some steam mops heat much quicker than others? Some canisters can take up to 15 minutes before they are ready to produce steam. The best ones need only a fraction of that time. The heat-up time is affected not only by the tank capacity but also by the watt power the machine has. Higher means less waiting.

Steam pressure

Since canister steam mops are considerably more powerful than other types, they often have the maximum steam pressure listed in specifications. Generally, higher pressure means quicker cleaning, as the steam gets better forced into the pores, cracks, and crevices of the surface, lifting any dirt stuck there. If fast cleaning is your priority, look for a model boasting 4 bars or higher.

Variable steam

Not all household surfaces will be happy to see the maximum pressure applied on them. Thus, having several steam settings is crucial for versatility. Being able to turn the steam down can also prevent your home from turning into a sauna on summer days.

Size and weight

Before you buy, check the dimensions of the unit and consider where you will store it. Also, pay attention to the model’s weight and add one or two kilos for the tank when it’s full. Most canisters have large wheels, and they obediently follow wherever pulled. But you may still have to carry the unit if your house has stairs or high doorsteps.

Power cord

We advise against using an extension cord with steam mops, as they’re high-wattage appliances. It’s much safer to check the power points in your household before and make sure the model you’ve eyed offers enough of a reach.

Canister steam mops usually have cords from 4 to 9 metres. The total reach usually is 1 to 3 metres higher because you’ll attach the included plastic hose and extension lances.

Cleaning pads

For the floors, most steam mops use elastics or hook and loop (aka Velcro) systems to attach the pad to the cleaning head. To remove it, you’ll have to place the mop on a horizontal surface, wait for it to cool down and then remove the pad with your hands.

Typically, one pad lasts long enough to mop the kitchen and two bathrooms. But if the area is larger (or heavily soiled) and requires changing pads in the middle of cleaning, a manual replacement can feel too time-consuming. This is where steam mops with hands-free systems come in. They tend to be among the most expensive models, but you won’t get your hands dirty, nor have to wait for the pad to cool down.

Filters and descaling

Some steam mops are recommended to be used with distilled water only. This is because the minerals dissolved in tap water can accumulate in the unit, blocking the nozzles and outlets and even damaging the heating element. If the water in your area is very hard, you can also mix it with distilled water to minimise limescale formation.


If you mainly want to steam the floors, look for a model with a swivel head that allows cleaning tight spaces. The pole should also tilt easily for accessing areas under furniture. The hose should be lightweight and flexible, and the handle must feel ergonomic, not to tire your wrists.

For large, mostly obstacle-free rooms, mops with wide, rectangular heads deliver the fastest results. If you have flooring with plenty of nooks and crannies, a mop with a smaller, oblong or triangular head will be more convenient.

Steam cleaner accessories

Both canister and handheld steam mops typically come with plenty of accessories that are either included or can be bought separately. Here are some of the most popular steam mop accessories and how to use them:

  • Carpet gliders get attached to the floor head and allow using it for refreshing rugs and mats.
  • Brushes of various shapes and sizes allow accessing and scrubbing away embedded dirt from narrow spaces.
  • Microfibre pads work well for wiping tabletops, sills, walls, and other flat surfaces. Some can have a more abrasive surface to clean grease from ovens or other challenging filth.
  • Squeegees are convenient for cleaning windows and glass.
  • Upholstery tools work similarly to carpet gliders, refreshing upholstery, car seats, and plush toys.
  • Jet nozzles are designed to deep clean the tiny crevices larger tools cannot access. Some are angled for particularly tricky corners.
  • If your floors often get heavily soiled, you’ll need a grout cleaner. These basically are very narrow brushes, perfect for accessing the dirt between tiles or other tight areas.
  • The iron attachment allows gently pressing your clothes and smoothing out wrinkles.

Steaming right

Operating a steam mop is straightforward, but some measures should be observed to protect yourself, the cleaning surface, and the machine. If cared for well, these appliances can serve 5 to 8 years.

Here are the essential tips to prevent burns, keep your steam mop in top condition, and get sparkling results every time.

  • Always keep the kids and pets away when you’re mopping.
  • Check whether your unit can be used with (hard) tap water. Some models come with filters or cartridges that prevent lime. In that case, remember to change them as indicated in the manual. Other manufacturers recommend using distilled water or mixing 50% of tap- and 50% of distilled water together. Neglecting this can kill your steam mop within a year or two since lime deposits will clog it up.
  • Don’t add cleaning agents to the water tank. The vapour is a powerful cleaning tool on its own; adding chemicals may result in irritating fumes and/or damage to your device.
  • After steam cleaning mattresses or upholstery, wait for the surface to completely dry and go over it with a HEPA vacuum cleaner. This will pick up the dead dust mites and other loosened dirt and is especially helpful for those who suffer from asthma or allergies.
  • For killing bed bugs, it’s best to clean slowly, covering each spot for ~30 seconds. Go over the whole mattress from both sides, and also steam any crevices the bed has. Spot cleaning of 30 seconds also sanitises the surface and kills bacteria and viruses.
  • During the cool down, don’t leave the head or the attachment on the same spot; this can cause damage.
  • Remember to empty the water tank after each use, especially if you only use your cleaner occasionally. You don’t want the water to go stale or mold to form inside. Don’t store the unit in a cold place where it may freeze.

The pads have to be washed after each use. Most are machine washable at 40° or 60° C.

Kristaps Celapiters

Kristaps' journey began as a curious consumer seeking genuine, reliable advice. Frustrated by vague recommendations, he decided to take matters into his own hands. Armed with a discerning eye and a dedication to thorough research, he embarked on a mission to provide fellow consumers with reviews they can truly rely on.
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