We want to purchase one of those steam cleaners for hardwood floors that are all over the TV lately. The ones with washable pads. We have done lots of research but can't find any feedback from people who have used them. Do you have any personal experience with one of the machines? We are looking for a recommendation and to find out the best place to find one (internet or store) Thanks!
By Pghgirl40 from Pittsburgh, PA
I bought the Shark steamer at Costco last year. Absolutely LOVE it! I don't even dread cleaning my 1,000 sq tf. of Pergo flooring. I knew if i didn't like it; even months later I could return it to Costco with no problem.
Keep in mind, there are two classes of "steam" floor cleaners, steam cleaners and vapor cleaners. Steam cleaners heat up to about 220 degrees and leave the surface kinda wet. Vapor cleaners heat up to over 300 degrees and leave less moisture on the cleaned surface. Also the vapor cleaner cleans faster because of the increased heat. So if you can afford a vapor cleaner, they are vastly superior. The higher heat will not hurt your wood floors as you keep moving the floor attachment as it does clean quickly, especially on hard surface floors.
You also need to decide if you want a "stick" model that is only good for cleaning floors, or the canister model that is good for floors, counters and just about anything else. The canister model is the way to go as you will be cleaning everything with it and without using any chemicals, only tap water.
Whether you opt for a steam or vapor cleaner, the material of the boiler tank is so important. The choice is aluminum or stainless steel... The aluminum will eventually pit and leak, the stainless should last for many years if not forever. So, getting one with a stainless steel boiler tank is almost a no-brainer.
Here is a link that compares the different "vapor" cleaners, so they can clean virtually all surfaces, including the family car...
The model I bought is Reliable T630 (3rd from the top left at the above link). The one attachment it has that most others don't have is a carpet attachment and thus allows for clean carpets. This attachment was the determining factor in my decision to buy this machine.
Here is a link at eBay where it is sold $100 less then the posted price.
http://cgi.ebay.com/RELIABLE-ENVIRO ... p3286.c0.m14&_trkparms=72%3A1205|66%3A2|65%3A12|39%3A1|240%3A1318|301%3A0|293%3A2|294%3A50
This machine does an excellent job of cleaning, it works just as the manufacturers says and I have not had any problems with it, having owned it for about 18 months.
Jim in Jax