After reviewing the Bissell Lift-Off Steam Mop and commenting that if I was going to purchase one I’d probably get a handheld model, Bissell offered to loan me one of their Steam Shots – a smaller simpler model good for spot cleaning.
As it happens, my mum was in town and was about to start a massive clean of my Grandad’s bungalow, so I offered her the services of the Steam Shot and asked her and dad to write a few words about their experience.
My mum’s says:
The Bissell Steam Shot is not cleaning heaven, but comes close. All cleaning requires effort and takes time. It can be a messy business when done properly. While not removing these elements entirely from the cleaning process, the ‘Steam Shot’ goes some way towards it.
For general cleaning, such as tiles, glass and ceramic surfaces, the Steam Shot is quick and easy. A few sprays of steam and a wipe over with a cloth proved sufficient. For areas splattered by grease or dried on soap and toothpaste more effort and more steam was required before the desired result was achieved.
The biggest test for the Steam Shot was in carrying out parts of an early ‘spring clean’ in the home an elderly relative. The Steam Shot was well up to the task, providing a really ‘deep clean’ making ten-year-old kitchen units and doors look as good a new.
Overall the Bissell Steam Shot does not remove the need for old fashioned ‘elbow-grease’, but does provide an alternative approach. It is certainly creates less mess than soap and chemical based methods. And only having to apply more steam to the stubborn spots rather than search for different cleaning spray to attack them is a bonus. It made the whole process simpler and quicker and no doubt in the long term, cheaper.
The varieties of tools were not fully tested as for the most part they seemed irrelevant. A ‘tooth-brush’ type head would have been helpful for cleaning between the kitchen tiles and other such recesses. The bristles on the round headed attachment supplied did not work because they were too long for a scrubbing action. The curved nozzle was most useful allowing precise cleaning of areas that other methods cannot reach without creating a lot of surplus mess.
While impressed by the amount of steam generated, after a while the weight of the appliance became evident. The power-lead also proved a problem occasionally, particularly when trying to clean areas some distance from the nearest electric socket such as parts of the bathroom.
To summarise the experience in a couple of sentences: The Bissell Steam Shot made for cleaner cleaning. It provided an environmentally friendly alternative for the everyday cleaning tasks around the home and perhaps time for a Latte – if there had been an attachment to steam the milk!
Back to me…
I agree with my mum (of course I do!) – steam cleaning definitely gets the job done but it isn’t all that easy. You do have to refill the steam shot quite regularly, move the plug from room to room, and if you’re cleaning something properly your arms do ache. But it does seem to get the results, and without using bottles of chemicals, which is why steam cleaners are getting more and more popular.
One thing I did find when using this around my house was if you do use more than one container of water it’s not as safe to refill as the Lift-Off Steam Mop. When you open the filler cap steam does escape (as I guess you’d expect), and that metal fastening does get hot. Fine if you’re really careful. Please be careful!
I’d quite like to see some of the features on the Steam Mop I reviewed on this Steam Shot – such as the easier/safer refilling and the variable steam output. But that would probably make the cleaner bigger. Even having said that, the Steam Shot is definitely more the sort of thing I would consider purchasing for myself. In fact I’m quite tempted…