Most helpful positive review
105 of 106 people found the following review helpful
Works Very Well, Once You Get The Hang of It
on December 29, 2009
We were about ready to return ours until we figured out that the lower the steam setting (even lower than the instructions), the less water is left on the floor or item (when used on items other than the floor) and the Steamfast's cleaning ability is not lessened by the lower setting. Also, if you are going to use it on both tile floors and wood floors in the same cleaning session and do not want to change pads, use it on the wood floors first at its lowest setting and then clean the tile second on medium. If you use the medium setting first, too much water will be left on whatever you use it afterward when you subsequently turn it down to low. Also, we have found that if you let the mop heat up on very low for a longer period of time, i.e., about a minute or so before using it, less water will be left on the floor. What would be great would be a setting that first heated up the mop with no steam.
However, it works very well getting our floors "squeaky clean;" and the floors seem to stay clean much longer. We are keeping it.
Now...what's with this complaint about weak handles from some other reviewers! The handle is made from thick tubular aluminum and is screwed into a deep socket of reinforced ABS plastic. You'd have to drive over it with a Mack Truck even to bend it...and I'd be more concerned about damage to the truck.
We have also tried the clothes steamer. That also works very well once you figure out how much steam to use without leaving water drips on the fabric. Disconnecting and using it as a hand steamer for various tasks (accessories included) is not the easiest task, due to how well the handle is attached; so some improvement could be made for this feature.
Also, if the water reservoir needs to be refilled during one session, the process is quite awkward in that the the fill receptacle is near the bottom of the reservoir making it necessary to lay the mop down on its side if you want to refill it to its capacity. However, the mop will clean about 1200 to 1400 square feet of flooring on one filling at its low setting.
The mechanism for putting on the the supplied pads is also awkward and difficult to use. Get the Bissel "slip-on" pads. They work much better.
When we were deciding whether or not to return the Steamfast, we borrowed the Euro-Pro Shark Pocket Steam Mop ($119.00 at Target) and a better Hahn ($99.00 from Amazon) from two of our neighbors to see if either did a better job. The Hahn was very slightly better at not leaving water on the wood floor, and just as good, but no better at cleaning. It did not clean tile and grout nearly as well as the Steamfast. The Pocket Mop did not clean as well, period; and sometimes left even more water on the floor. Neither has the versatility of the Steamfast.
The Steamfast is not a perfect product. Neither are any of the others in this genre; but with a few minor improvements, it could blow the others away; and at $74, it can perform many jobs besides cleaning floors very well. We are looking forward to using the other features and attachments.
My apologies for extolling the handle. Ours broke too, but in the middle sliding part. Steamfast is correcting the problem and quickly sent us a replacement part, which was unnecessary as the handle is easily repairable with a short sheet metal screw.
I still rate the product a full four stars and perhaps a little more for its performance.