Heavily-used areas tend to see a lot of dust and stains gather over the days. These can be a chore to clean, so steam caught our eye as a wholesome method for cleaning soiled flooring.
We’ve been reading about homeowners who are happy to tidy up things with their favorite steam machines. It turns out that with one on hand, you can get things into shape without heavy brushing and hazardous chemicals.
We cover the newest upright floor steamer from the first brand of steam cleaners, in our Light N’ Easy Vacuum Steam Mop review. This standing model can be set to vacuum and steam floors as it goes, in one convenient operation.
The lightweight design brings the cleansing power of steam where needed, but does it offer a versatile balance of power and convenience where it counts? Read on and find out what we liked (or not) about this multi talented steamer.
Hot mopping the place
Steam is a natural means of clearing the dirt and grime that builds up on laminate floorboards. It conveniently cleanses the affected areas at the same time.
Most boards will tolerate a few accidental spills. But the extra moisture that can seep into their interiors over years of routine steaming might eventually cause damage. But so long as the vapors do not slip past the joints and condense, things should be fine.
The remaining moisture left behind is far less than that generated by industrial wet mop and carpet steamers. The high-pressure flows produced by these can push into and through layers of the laminate. Steam mopping is the safer alternative in such cases.
Hot water vapor flowing at temperatures beyond 200°F is also great at killing bed bugs, which tend to spread fast and can be hard to eradicate fully. This natural cleaning method is also highly recommended for households with children, as it cleans and sanitizes without the use of irritating detergents.
How does a steam mop work?
The mop heads of most models have plastic bottoms where washcloths are held with fasteners. Steam produced the boiler flows through the base and its attached cloth. These machines output streams at temperatures reaching 200°F and higher.
The hot vapors dissolve or soften most dirt and stains on the surface being treated, which are then displaced and caught by damp pads. It is the forceful mix of hot mist and flowing steam that creates the cleansing effects, which the multi-layer pad distributes uniformly.
Laminate floors can manage the occasional spill, but too much dampness will eventually result in damage to their cores. As only tiny amounts of moisture are applied with steam mops, the remainder is readily absorbed, with most surfaces drying in under a minute.
However, users will still need to brush the worst stains off. Those who are unsure can always rent a commercial-grade unit first, to see how steam cleaning works.
Another option is to use a dry-wipe microfiber mop, which lifts dust and polishes flooring without the use of water. This method is usually safest for laminated and wooden flooring and can supplement the occasional steaming for more convenience.
Design and operation
This standing steam mop is mostly made of plastic but is sturdy enough for a lightweight design weighing around 7 pounds. Like other rolling upright steamers, the base is readily moved to other rooms and the whole unit readily stows in a tall closet.
The 2-in-1 function gives you the ability to vacuum loose dirt and hair followed by a round of steaming. Controls select among functions that enable vacuuming and steaming together or matching specific modes to changing conditions. Foot switches on the base let you quickly tap among vacuum, steam, and vacuum/steam settings.
If you must stop for a moment, the handle can be left in its vertical position, staying upright without tipping over. As it can be rotated as you move, the roller mechanism lets you easily maneuver around furniture and fixtures.
The following parts are included in the package:
- Upright roller handle
- Steam mop head
- Washable mop cleaning pad
- 5 disposable cleaning pads
Sticky and dried up messes can be dislodged using the integrated pad, with a microfiber scrub pad for back-up in worse cases. Dirty spots and grimy crevices are quickly deep-cleaned with the built-in scrubber. An optional ‘Grinder’ attachment can be purchased for heavier-duty carpet cleaning.
The 20-foot-long power cord reaches most power outlets in the average room, but it may not let the base reach every corner in the largest. A larger reservoir would have enabled longer steaming sessions at a time between refills.
Performance and capacity
The low-profile unit is compact but produces steam with temperatures reaching 284℉, which is hot enough to kill 99% of all harmful germs. With the water reservoir filled up and the unit turned on, steam will be produced for use in less than a minute.
In operation, the foot controls are easy to figure out and reliable. The light suction followed by a hot blast of steam works to clean up dust and grime, without you having to waste time on vacuuming things beforehand. Once treated, most hard surfaces will usually dry out in about 30 seconds.
It is best not to vacuum while steaming, as the sprayed dirt may wind up sticking to the floor. The supplied microfiber pad works great, but a spare terry cloth affixed to the bottom can be just as good. The vacuum section only produces enough suction to handle loose dirt and hair, though.
The amount of steaming needed can expose another inconvenience. The issue is the small water capacity of the unit, which is just enough for some 12 minutes of steaming action in a single session.
Also, on longer jobs, you will have to wait for the base to cool down before opening the cap and refilling the reservoir. Then you will find yourself waiting again for yet another batch of steam to be produced.
Features and Specifications
- Energy-efficient 600-Watt boiler and vacuum motor
- Low profile base weighs 7 pounds and is readily wheeled between rooms
- Reservoir volume of 4 ounces generates up to 12 minutes of steam per session
- Steam temperatures of up to 284˚F effectively kill 99% of all harmful germs
- Flexible foot-step switches let you select between vacuum/steam modes
- On-demand steam enables more economical usage
- Microfiber cloth leaves hard-surfaced floors drying in a few seconds
- Long 20-foot power cord lets the base reach every corner of most rooms
- One-year manufacturer’s warranty
What Customers Say
This steamer works well for mopping hard floors, with one exclaiming “What a wonderful steam mop!”. It takes less than a minute for steam to start flowing after powering up the base. A full load normally brings some 12 minutes of steaming action.
Light N Easy’s Vacuum Steam Mop received many positive comments in user reviews found at Amazon’s site. One user commented that “Vacuuming and mopping at the same time are great”. Many others agree that this model is more convenient to use than conventional designs, scoring an Amazon average of 4.5 of 5 stars.
The only real issue was the small water capacity, as a larger load would have enabled longer steaming sessions between refills. The advanced design does save time and effort since the machine can be readily set to vacuum then mop in quick succession.
See what customers are saying! Read verified reviews here.
Light N Easy Vacuum Steam Mop is one of the better upright models from the most innovative brand in steamers. The base easily maneuvers around wherever vacuuming and steaming are needed and the dual foot switches are easy to tap and function reliably.
The tiny water capacity should be enough for owners with less space to maintain. Those with bigger jobs will find the steaming effective but the steam duration a bit disappointing. The design clearly trades reservoir volume and working time for power and mobility.
For light vacuuming and steaming, this is one of the handiest and most affordable steam mops. It clears and sanitizes loose dust and stains and is quite useful for cleaning hard floors around the house.