Most of us iron and use an ironing board. Why would we ever consider buying a garment steamer to possibly replace or complement our existing appliances?
Garment steamers have advantages over an iron and ironing board that are hard to overlook. garment steamers usually take up less space, stand on their own, are easier to use, handle a wider set of materials safely, and can outperform most irons. It wasn’t that long ago that you would only find a fully capable clothes steamer in laundries and dry cleaners. That has changed significantly in recent years as the price point has lowered to where they are accessible by most households.
Garment Steamer Specifications
Any discussion of garment steamers reviews must be preceded by a look at the key specifications and features of a reasonably equipped device. These are the specification and features on which you will depend to base your buying decision.
Watts equals heat to some degree and so garment steamers with higher wattages will produce steam more quickly from the steamer’s reservoir of water. Also, more power will produce a more powerful stream of steam which translates to the ability to handle a wider variety of fabrics and faster performance. Lower wattage devices may not be able to remove all the wrinkles from tougher fabrics like denim.
The more water, the longer you can steam and the more garments you can steam, everything else being equal. This is because the larger the reservoir, the longer the steam will last. If you want to steam several garments or large fabric areas like drapes and curtains, you will want to consider a larger reservoir.
Steam Production Time
A higher wattage device can typically produce steam quicker than a lower wattage device. This can be important if you are in a hurry or are just an impatient person. So if “impatient” describes your demeanor, you should choose a steamer with more wattage and a shorter published time to steam. Many popular garment steamers are able to produce steam in less than a minute.
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Steam Duration Time
A more powerful steamer with more watts produces a more powerful stream but, it will also use the water in the reservoir faster. If you want faster performance, be sure to match the steam duration time with your expectations so that you can complete your tasks in one session.
Even so, portability around the house is still important. Important portability considerations include dimensions, weight, and portability features. The most common feature of a garment steamer that contributes to portability is a set of wheels. If you need to move your garment steamer some distance from your storage location (closet) to your steaming location (bedroom), you should make sure your choice has adequate portability features such a wheel.
How easy is it to store the garment steamer? The good news is that most garment steamers are now small enough to be relatively easy to store. If they have a built-in garment hanger you may find that they are taller than you expected but, they are usually squat and narrow for the most part. They usually can easily be stored in the corner of a bedroom or closet. Units with collapsible garment hangers are even easier to store. Do you have a place to store the steamer? Think of that when considering your choice.
Portability aside, you need to consider where you are going to plug in your garment steamer. The length of the power cord is important, especially if the availability of outlets in your garment is limited. If you need the flexibility, choose a unit with a longer power cord.
Garment Steamer Key Features
- Garment Hanger
Most garment steamers come equipped with either a fixed or collapsible garment hanger. They make a handy alternative to hanging your clothes on a closet door or other hanger somewhere in your house. If this alternative is important to you, make sure you choose a unit with that feature.
- Fabric Brush and Accessories
The majority of garment clothes steamers come with a set of accessories usually including a fabric brush. The fabric brush is useful in removing lint from your clothes and brushing the fabric of your clothes while steaming.
A longer warranty may be the determining factor in your decision when all other features and specifications are equal. You will find that warranty lengths vary by manufacturer and can be found from 90 days to as high as 5 years. Look for a warranty of a year or more on a garment clothes steamer.