Top Product: True & Tidy STM 300 | $34 | MorningSave
When my editor handed me this assignment, I was truly amused. What is a steam mop? I’d never even heard of one, let alone knew what to do with it. So I got to work, extensively researching all the contenders for the best steam mop I could find online, learning how and when to use it, and of course, figuring out exactly what it is, to begin with.
The best way I can describe a steam mop is a Swiffer, except with a cord. Instead of a reservoir filled with a chemical solution, it’s filled with water. When you plug the mop in, it quickly heats and disperses 250-degree steam into the mop head. Then you use that to easily clean the floor.
Here’s the thing: Unlike a regular mop or the old hands and knees method, you don’t use any soap or solution with a steam mop. According to The Spruce, it’s actually not for deep cleaning at all, contrary to my first impressions. This mop is used for maintenance or for killing bacteria after you’ve deep cleaned. The steam makes washing your floor easy if you choose to do it often. It’s perfect for rainy or snowy days, a lot of little ones running around, or just keeping those stubborn floors spotless.
Most people don’t actually need this mop. Since this doesn’t need any soap, it is a good option for folks who have a chemical or sent sensitivity or prefer to keep household chemicals to a minimum.
Using it is simple. Sweep the floor and make sure there is no dirt/debris. Make sure you have a few mop pads to use, so when one gets dirty, swap it out, and keep going. The mop pads are easy to clean, just pop them in the washing machine and you’re good to go the next time you need to use the steam mop. Most steam mop manufacturers recommend this mop for all kinds of floors, but the experts say it’s not as safe as people think it is and should be used for stone, tile, perhaps carpet but certainly not wood.
Best Overall: True & Tidy STM 300
I tried out the True & Tidy mop for the review and overall I was impressed. I don’t think I like cleaning enough to use it regularly, but it’s a good tool to have in the back pocket when my wife comes home from a rainy bike ride and trains water all over the house. For $34 over at MorningSave (or a less enticing $48 on Amazon), it’s a budget-friendly choice for a steam mop.
Best Consumer Reports Pick: Bissell Powerfresh Deluxe
A Consumer Reports-approved steam mob, Amazon reviews of the Bissell Powerfresh Deluxe are shining stars as well. The 4.6- out of 5-star rating with over 6000 reviews speaks for itself. One of those reviewers, Erin B. Morrigan writes, “All I can tell you is, I actually feel legitimate love for this inanimate object. I have steam cleaned my entire house in the last 24 hours and I cannot believe how dirty everything actually was!! Even things I thought had been cleaned well.”
Best for Hardwood Floors: Shark Genius Steam Mop
Unlike the budget-friendly mop, this one has a bigger surface area, and it can be flipped over and continue the cleaning job without replacing the mop pad. This helpful review tells you everything you need to know.
“I did quite a bit of research on steam mops before making a purchase and I love this mop! It’s perfect for hardwood and tile floors,” says Diane Katzdorn. “You don’t have to worry about making sure you have cleaning solution on hand since it only requires water and the cleaning pads can be washed vs constantly having to purchase more. If the room is large, the water may have to be refilled, but easy to do while cleaning. I used to hate cleaning my floors till I got this shark.”