Ironing is hard work. When you have an expansive wardrobe or a large household, using an iron to remove wrinkles takes up too much time from your day, but you do it anyway because you don’t want yourself or your family to look unkempt at work or school. What other choice do you have but to spend several hours ironing a basket or two of clothes?
Do what the professionals do, and steam them instead. Garment steamers aren’t just for commercial use anymore. Today, these miraculous wrinkle-removers come in all sizes from pocketbook portables for fabric freshening on the go to rolling stands that are designed to dewrinkle a large volume of clothing.
What Features Should You Look for in a Standing Garment Steamer?
Between the clothing in your closet and the furnishings in your home, you have spent a lot of money over the years to make you and your house look good. Therefore, you need a garment steamer you can count on for years.
Don’t just pick the first standing steamer you find. Get one that has the features you need to make dewrinkling and fabric freshening as easy as possible.
Without the heating element, the steamer can’t raise the water’s temperature to a boiling point. The heating element should have a high wattage. At the least, 1,300 watts is enough to heat the water in the tank in 2 minutes or less.
Since the heating element is crucial to the steamer’s performance, you want one made from a material that can outlast heavy use, such as brass. An aluminum heating element is also a great choice because it won’t corrode over time.
Next to the heating element, the water reservoir is the second most important aspect of a standing steamer. When you’re shopping around, look for one with a large-capacity reservoir.
The more water it can hold, the more working time you’ll get from a full tank. Also, a handle makes it easier for you to carry the tank to the sink. If it has an automatic shut-off mechanism, the steamer will power down when the water runs out, safeguarding the heating element.
Handle and Nozzle
Since you’ll be steaming clothes by the basket full, the handle must feel comfortable in your hand. It needs to be ergonomically designed to curve into your palm or textured to give you a strong grip.
Plus, the handle’s material should remain cool to the touch no matter how long you use the steamer. In terms of the nozzle, a wide one will cover more fabric in one pass and put out even coverage. These qualities equate to less time spent steaming your clothes.
Power Cord and Hose
Although these features don’t matter as much when you’re dewrinkling garments that are hanging on the steamer, they come into play when you’re smoothing curtains, freshening upholstery and touching up table linens.
The longer the power cord and hose, the easier it will be to reach furnishings, so you won’t have to move them. Make sure you pay attention to how the cord is constructed; the fibers should be tightly woven and extremely thick to withstand constant stretching and bending.
For some appliances, accessories are just nice but unnecessary bonuses. However, for standing steamers, some accessories are essential. For example, you’ll need a way to hang to clothes on the steamer.
Most high-quality steamers come with a built-in hanger while others also have top clips, bottom clips or both, which let you stretch out fabric to quicken the dewrinkling time. Those that don’t have a hanger should at least have a hook where you can put your own hanger.
Other accessories that may come with a standing steamer include a brush for lint removal, a press or board for crease creation and a bonnet for fragile-fabric protection.
The pole is the entire reason this type of steamer is called a standing steamer. Its main job is to give you a place to hang clothes while you steam them. This means the pole needs to be tall and durable.
If you are short on space, look for a standing steamer with a telescopic pole. Also, the pole should be made of aluminum or another strong, non-corrosive material.
Wheels are the most overlooked feature on a standing steamer, but you want a set that gives you excellent maneuverability. If the steamer has four wheels, all the wheels should be casters that swivel.
If the steamer has two wheels, they should be smooth and wide, so they don’t mark your hard floors or make the appliance sway, and they should be paired with two soft-rubber feet to keep the steamer from moving while in use.
Every standing steamer has a different control configuration. On some models, you can turn the power on and off on the handle, which is the most direct way to start and stop the flow of steam. On other models, there is a turn dial on the base of the steamer; a knob is slightly less convenient than a fingertip button, but it’s still simple to use.
If you want a way to increase and decrease the volume of steam that comes out of the nozzle, there are some steamers with a variable-mist controller that lets you tailor the steam output to the type of fabric.
What Are the Differences Between a Handheld and a Standing Steamer?
If you’ve taken a quick look to see what kind of garment steamers are out there, you may have been surprised by the variations among the models.
There are two main categories of fabric steamers – the handheld steamer and the standing steamer. Obviously, their size is the major difference between the two, with handhelds being much smaller than their standing counterparts. However, there are other dissimilarities.
Since handhelds are made to be carried while standing steamers are designed to roll, the quality of materials used to construct each type of steamer is different. To make sure they withstand being pulled and pushed across hard floors, thresholds and uneven surfaces, the casing and water tank of a standing steamer are made from thick, crack-resistant plastic while handheld steamer manufacturers tend to stick with cheaper, more flimsy plastic because the more expensive type is unnecessary.
Also, the hose and cord are tough and corrosion-resistant in order to prevent damage caused by prolonged exposure to hot steam.
The larger size of a standing steamer means it has a larger water capacity than a handheld. A standing garment steamer for residential use typically holds 1 quart to almost 1 gallon of water. On the other hand, the average capacity of a handheld is about 1 fluid cup.
People purchase standing steamers because these appliances can dewrinkle a lot of clothes with one tank of water. Their water capacity coupled with a heating element that has twice the wattage of the standard handheld steamer make them the ideal choice for high-volume clothing care.
A handheld can produce steam for about 10 to 20 minutes, which is just enough time to dewrinkle two or three articles of clothing. However, a standing steamer can go for 45 minutes to 1.5 hours before it runs out of water. Therefore, one full tank can last long enough to remove wrinkles from an entire laundry basket of clothes.
Our Recommended Standing Garment Steamers in 2023
PurSteam Garment Steamer
The PurSteam Garment Steamer is a mint green standing steamer that can get up and running in about a minute. You can maneuver it around your house on its two oversized wheels, and its two front feet keep it secure while in use.
The woven, 60-inch hose offers a lengthy reach, and the fingertip power switch gives you control over the flow of steam.
In order to produce 60 minutes of nonstop steam, there is an 85-ounce reservoir. You can even adjust the steam’s level of power with the triangular knob on top of the tank. Plus, the tank’s safety cap is designed to prevent burns.
As far as extras go, this standing steamer has them. It comes with a clothes hanger, fabric brush and garment clips. The pole adjusts from 31.5 inches for compact storage to 63 inches for hanging pants. There is also a cradle to put the nozzle on when not in use.
- WHY IS THIS THE ULTIMATE STEAMER IN THE USA: We designed it to be the absolutely most...
- LARGEST AVAILABLE 2.5 LITER 85 fl oz WATER TANK: Steams continuously for over 60 minutes...
J-2000 Jiffy Garment Steamer
Even though the J-2000 Jiffy Garment Steamer doesn’t come with attachments, it’s made of strong materials and has a super-long working time.
The hard-plastic, 6.6-inch wide nozzle delivers uniform steam coverage. There are four pivoting casters to help you move the standing steamer, and it has a curved, comfortable handle.
Two minutes after you turn on the 1,300-watt steamer, you get steam output that lasts for 1.5 hours. Its tank has a water capacity of 0.75 gallons, which means fewer fill-up breaks. Additionally, you can instantly check the water level because the tank is transparent.
With the steamer’s auto shut-off ability, you’ll never have to worry about the durably made heating element of solid brass failing prematurely. On the exterior, the housing is constructed from tough plastic that’s designed to withstand high impacts, and the flexible hose provides 5.5 feet of reach when you need to freshen curtains and upholstery.
- 1300 watt solid brass heating element (120 volt for North America use only…not for...
- High-impact plastic outer housing for durability
Steamfast SF-407 Fabric Steamer
This standing fabric steamer from Steamfast heats up in a mere 45 seconds thanks to its 1,500-watt heating element.
With four swiveling caster wheels, you’ll have no trouble moving the steamer. For a secure grip, the handle is textured to prevent your hand from slipping.
At most, the reservoir can hold 40 ounces of water to put out 45 minutes’ worth of steam.
You can even remove the tank to refill it, which means there’s no chance of spilling water on the floor. Since the nozzle is wide and round, the steam covers a large area, so you can get your laundry done fast.
From 30 inches to 51.2 inches, you can adjust the height of the pole to three settings. This means you don’t have to worry about having enough room to store the steamer. In order to dewrinkle your clothes without them falling off the pole, the hook is notched. As a bonus, the steamer comes with a fabric brush.
- SUPERIOR SUPPORT — When you choose a Steamfast product, you’re investing in superior...
- QUICK HEAT UP TIME — 40-ounce capacity removable water tank heats up in 45 seconds and...
PurSteam Garment Steamer
With the PurSteam Garment Steamer, the 1,500-watt aluminum heating element takes the water from room temperature to 248 degrees Fahrenheit in 60 seconds or less.
The power is easy to control via the turn dial, and the handle’s finger grips make the nozzle effortless to hold. It also features two smooth wheels for great maneuverability.
Since the tank is transparent, you don’t have to take it out to check the water level. However, when you need to refill the 61-ounce tank, simply pull it out by the hinged handle. On a full tank, the appliance gives you 1 hour of steady steam.
The telescopic pole comes with a clip bar on the bottom and a hanger on the top to meet all your fabric dewrinkling needs.
If you need to put creases in your pants or skirts, there is an attachment that is perfect for the job. This steamer even comes with a flat board for straightening sleeves and collars.
Pure Enrichment PureSteam XL – High-Powered Standing Fabric Steamer
PureSteam’s XL standing steamer allows you to start smoothing fabric almost instantly with its 1,500-watt heating element.
Since its cord is 7 feet long, you’ll have no issues reaching all the curtains and furniture around your house, and the dual-caster wheels coupled with a set of rolling wheels allow you to move the steamer without it wobbling. You will also love how the finger grips on the angled handle help you maintain your hold.
Its ability to contain one-half gallon of water means the appliance gives you 60 minutes of powerful steam. After 45 seconds, the XL heats the water and pushes steam through the 5-foot hose and out of the elongated nozzle. To quickly refill the steamer, pull out the hinged handle on the rear-placed reservoir.
Whether you want to store the steamer or take wrinkles out of a dress, the three-position adjustable pole can accommodate what you need to do. At the top, there is a clothes hanger with two clips. Plus, the steamer comes with a fabric brush for getting rid of pesky lint and pilling.
- SUPERIOR STEAM OUTPUT: With up to 1500 watts of safe power, easily soften, refresh, and...
- SAFE & GENTLE CLEANING: Premium steam cleans and deodorizes to rid your clothes of any...
At its core, the design of a standing garment steamer is basic. Inside of this appliance, there is a heating element. This mechanism heats the water to a temperature that is high enough to produce steam. The steam travels up the hose and out of the nozzle or an attachment like a brush should you choose to use one.
As the steam makes contact with the article of clothing, it eliminates wrinkles and creases in the fabric by relaxing the fabric’s polymer molecules, which bond in a cross-chain pattern.
Even though an iron and a steamer are able to remove wrinkles, the way each one works differs. As its name suggests, steamers remove wrinkles with the steam that’s generated by heat. Conversely, irons create dewrinkling heat by transferring it from a heating element to a flat metal plate. Once the hot plate makes contact with the fabric and pressure is applied, the heat straightens the fabric.
Unlike a steamer that lets you dewrinkle your clothes while they are hanging, you need an ironing board when you use an iron. This means you must pull out not one but two tools when it’s time to do laundry, and you need to have a lot of elbow room around the ironing board.
With a standing steamer, the only required space is the area immediately in front of it, making a steamer more user-friendly than the iron-ironing board combo.
Irons are not without their benefits. These appliances are well-suited for dewrinkling heavy fabrics. Plus, they are top-notch when it comes to putting creases in pants and blouses. However, you don’t have to make contact with the fabric when you use a steamer, which is not the case when you use an iron.
The need to press a hot metal plate against delicate fabric also puts you at risk of accidentally making scorch marks and ruining your favorite shirt; this risk is nonexistent when you use a steamer.
If you have a standing steamer that comes with a creasing attachment, you can get that fresh-pressed look without using an iron. Steamers are also the preferred choice when removing wrinkles from pleated garments and soft fabric.
Sure, there are irons that can produce steam from a tiny integrated water tank. However, these irons are notorious for leaking droplets of water onto the fabric, and you still have to press down on the clothing to remove wrinkles.
When you think of a standing steamer, the mega-size ones used in factories probably comes to mind. However, standing steamers don’t take up as much room as you may think, so don’t let that deter you from owning one of these wrinkle-releasing wonders. The tank is the widest part of a standing steamer.
At most, the tank measures 1.5 feet by 1 foot, which is about the same size of the width and height of a vacuum cleaner floor head, and the tank’s height falls in between less than 1 foot to less than 1.5 feet.
There is also the overall height. Some models have a pole as tall as 5 feet. This height offers enough clearance for hanging pants and long garments without them touching the ground. However, the height may pose issues if you’re tight on storage space.
Manufacturers know that many consumers view this as a downside. Therefore, there are many standing steamers with telescopic wands. This type of wand slides up and down in height to make it taller or shorter, so you don’t need as much storage space for the steamer.
You don’t have to take your shirt or pants out of the closet and off the hanger to lay it flat. You can keep it on its original hanger. Alternatively, you can hang the article of clothing on the steamer itself by the hanger or clips that come with the appliance.
Then, take out the tank, if it’s removable, and fill it up with water. After you turn on the steamer, it will take 45 seconds to 2 minutes to heat the water and generate steam.
As you run the nozzle up and down close to the garment without touching it, pull the piece of clothing tight; don’t linger long on plastic details like buttons to avoid damaging them. Within a few minutes, the wrinkles will be gone.
With all the heavy-duty use a standing steamer gets, you’ll most likely use readily available tap water in the tank as opposed to store-bought distilled water. Since tap water contains minerals, you’ll need to clean the internal steam-delivery system from time to time.
Otherwise, the nozzle can get clogged with mineral deposits. To prevent this issue, simply add some white vinegar to the tank. Then, let the steam out of the nozzle until the tank is empty. Afterward, put just water in the tank and run the steamer until it’s empty.
Our Recommended Standing Garment Steamers
• Preheat and Steam Settings
• 2H of Steam Output
• 4 Level Steam Adjustment
• With Attached Hanger
• Preheat and Steam Settings
• 2H of Steam Output
• 4 Level Steam Adjustment
• With Attached Hanger
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Last Update: 2023-09-23 | Affiliate links/Images from Amazon Product Advertising API