If you have hard floors, you may imagine yourself as Cinderella every time you have to get down on your hands and knees to scrub a stain that your mop failed to pick up. While this buying guide cannot introduce you to a fairy godmother, we may have the next best thing for those dirty floors. Steam mops take the scrubbing out of mopping by using steam to loosen the dirt, so all you have to do is gracefully glide your mop across the floor for a clean surface.
Replacing your old mop with a steam mop can expedite the chore process. Shark steam mops are high quality, reliable and have a variety of options for your household needs. Read on for the basics of picking out the right Shark steam mop for you. For an intelligent mop with a functional design, consider the Genius model.
There are lots of features to consider before purchasing a Shark steam mop. For more information about steam mops, check out the buying guide from BestReviews.
Steam mops work by adding water to the reservoir, which is then converted into steam via that mop’s internal water boiler. The steam is then pumped into the head of the mop as you move it across the floor. The steam loosens dirt and other residues on the floor so the mop head can pick it up without any scrubbing.
By loosening dirt and stain residue, steam mops take the hard work out of cleaning floors. The water reservoir keeps you from having to carry around a mop bucket or use harsh chemicals. Steam also kills bacteria and germs on the surface of your floors for a deeper clean. Additionally, because they use steam instead of water, your floor will dry faster with steam mops than with traditional mopping.
Like most products, the lifespan of your steam mop will depend largely on the quality of the model you purchase and how well you maintain it. A high-end mop can last five years or more, while a cheaper model may wear out after a year. Be aware though, time doesn’t always equate to use. If you use your steam mop every day, it's likely to wear out sooner than if you use it once a week or once a month.
You want your steam mop to be comfortable to handle, so you should consider the size and weight of your mop before making a purchase. Some mops weigh up to 15 pounds even without water, whereas others can weigh only 5 pounds with water. Also, be aware of size in terms of storage. Some models are detachable or have telescoping handles for easy storage.
The water reservoir is one of the most important features of a steam mop. The size of the reservoir will affect how heavy the steam mop is and how often you have to refill the tank. Some models have a reservoir that detaches, so you can carry it to the sink to refill it instead of using jugs or a funnel. Also be aware that some models require you to turn off the mop and allow it to cool completely before refilling, which can be a pain.
If you are able, opt for a Shark steam mop with multiple steam settings and digital controls. Mops with only one setting can run out of water faster as they will use the same amount for small spots as for big ones. If your steam mop has trigger-style controls, the mechanism may wear out and it can be uncomfortable for your hands.
Many Shark steam mops come with attachments and accessories to customize the cleaning experience, such as a squeegee for windows or a brush designed for grout scrubbing. Some come with carpet-specific attachments as well.
Smaller, less multifunctional Shark mops will cost around $60, while larger Shark steam mops with a variety of functions range from $100-$200.
A. The reservoir on your steam mop can develop a buildup of limescale, especially if you’re regularly filling it with tap water. So make sure you empty and wipe out the tank after each use. Also, be sure to regularly clean the steam nozzle with a pin to remove deposits that have built up there and keep the nozzle functioning well.
A. Shark does use reusable cloth pads in most of their steam mops, but there may be some that do not. Double-check the product info before making your purchase.
A. Always check your product manual to be sure, but typically you can use your steam mop on marble, stone, linoleum, vinyl, laminate, ceramic and sealed wood flooring.
What you need to know: This customer favorite has reliable performance and user-friendly customized operation.
What you’ll love: Called genius for a reason, this steam mop is equipped with intelligent steam controls, a no-touch pad release button for hands-free removal and a direct steam function that targets messes and stains.
What you should consider: The water tank isn’t detachable, which some customers consider an inconvenience.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon.
What you need to know: Affordable, capable and easy to use, this swivel head steam mop is a favorite among busy parents and caretakers.
What you’ll love: This straightforward steam mop is equipped with an extra-large reservoir so you can cover all your surfaces in a single fill, a swivel head for easy maneuvering and dual-sided, reusable mop pads that cover more surface area. The cleaning pads are also machine washable for easy maintenance.
What you should consider: The power cord is a bit shorter than other products, which can inhibit cleaning.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon.
What you need to know: If you’re looking for a multifunction steam mop, this two-in-one steam mop can clean your floor and de-wrinkle your curtains via simple detachment.
What you’ll love: Equipped with three levels of intelligent steam control and machine washable grip pads, this steam mop has a removable handheld steamer that uses intelligent, touch-free attach and release technology.
What you should consider: The cord is fairly short and requires some push for floor cleaning.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
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Collette Bliss writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.