Let’s kick this off by making the FTC and other officials happy. I was sent a Bissell® Steam and Sweep Hard Floor unit for the purposes of review. Bissell has also provided a second unit which will be given away by random drawing to a reader of Home-Ec101.com at the end of this post. Links to products in this post are affiliate links.
We’re cool now right?
Why was I interested in reviewing this product?
Due to my allergies and our general taste or lack thereof in decorating, the main level of our home and the master bedroom are all hardwood or tile and eventually the children’s rooms will be, too. Just as an FYI, this post will trigger the carpet company defender army o’ robot spammers who will comment saying that carpet really isn’t all that bad for those with allergies. Whatever. They are welcome to talk to my allergist, I can only go with my anecdotal evidence which says he’s spot on.
Hardwood flooring has its own set of issues, one of which is that most chemicals for sanitizing are a definite no and vinegar falls into a grey area of maybe, but not too much, and rinse again after use. Yet when it comes to flooring, into everyone’s life a little crap must fall. I do mean that quite literally. If you have a pet, accidents happen. If there are children lurking about, under a certain age they just don’t get that a shoe should come off before walking all over the house to report the accident. Why yes, for those of you who can remember one of my kids is very Calvin-esque. It’s almost impossible to resist the urge to whip out some kind of chemical in these cases, despite recommendations to the contrary.
Enter the Bissell® Steam & Sweep Hard Floor Cleaner.
My first impression of the BISSELL® Steam & Sweep:
- Useful? Yes.
- Life changing? Probably not.
- Assembly? Easy as pie.
- Effectiveness as a cleaning tool? Good.
- Chemical free? Awesome.
If you are in the market for a steam cleaner that can be used on sealed hardwood floors -provided it does not void your warranty- linoleum, and tile, then this ~ $140.00 (I’m not sure why it’s 152.00 on Amazon) unit may fit the bill. If you are looking for a steam cleaner expecting it to make your life sprout sunshine and daisies with a kid like Calvin running around, you may be disappointed.
If you regularly sweep your floors, then the combination sweep and mop mode will do a fine job.
If you like to wait until you’re wading through pet hair, this may not be the tool for you or you’ll just have to use a broom or vacuum before running the steam and sweep.
If you are looking for a chemical free way to sanitize your hard flooring, this tool may be exactly what you’re looking for.
You must follow the instructions properly to get the sanitizing effect from the unit.
The steam and sweep unit weighs about 10 pounds. While this isn’t heavy, it’s not quite the same as pushing a dust mop around. Then again, I stand in at six feet tall and part of the issue may be the handle height. I have the feeling product designers take a more average (5’7″ish) height into account when mass producing products that will be used mainly by women. The Bissell Steam and Sweep has a swivel head, but I found it worked best with a straight path.
I liked the footprint of the steam vacuum. It is wide enough (12″) to not have to make 952 treks across the room, but not so wide as to make storage or maneuverability an issue.
I really like that the Bissell® Steam and Sweep comes with two microfiber pads for the base. I’m not always on the ball about getting my cleaning rags through the laundry in a timely fashion and it is very nice to have a spare. I also like that the pads are not disposable. This is my main beef with Swiffer™ type products. I have a big issue with products that are disposable just for convenience sake. (That said for a few years I did use a Swiffer™ with my own hemp cloth pads with great success).
I should note that the unit wasn’t particularly great at getting the edges of a room. So, if I were to clean up a spill that had gone under cabinet or up against a baseboard in a corner, I’d still need a rag or towel to finish the clean up. That said, if a floor is fairly well maintained most edges and corners don’t get too bad.
I did not find that using the Bissell® Steam & Sweep radically changed the amount of time it takes to sweep and mop my flooring. What I did like was the lack of dirty water reservoir to empty. We currently have a Hoover FloorMate SpinScrub and emptying the reservoir lurks somewhere around cleaning toilets on my list o’ favorite chores. I really like that the Bissell® Steam and Sweep is a fill, plug in, and go appliance. I should also note that even though the water reservoir isn’t huge, it goes a long way; much further in fact than my SpinScrub, even though some spots require an extra pass or two. This is mostly around where my kids have spilled or splattered something sticky.
It is recommended that you use distilled water with this product. The reason is minerals from hard water will deposit on the internal (and therefore not cleanable) heating element making it less efficient over time. There is a replaceable filter included to help reduce this problem.
Overall? I like the appliance.
Short list of Pros and Cons for the TLDR¹ types.
Would you like a chance at a Bissell® Steam & Sweep Hard Floor Cleaner of your very own?
You’re in luck, I have just that. I will be giving away a new Bissell® Steam & Sweep Hard Floor Cleaner to a lucky reader in the United States (sorry rest of the world). Each Home Ec 101 reader has up to three chances to enter the giveaway. As usual those chances are:
- A plain, old-fashioned how you doin’ style comment.
- A comment with a link to a tweet on Twitter sharing this post.
- A comment with a link to a blog post or Facebook entry referencing this post. (just copy the url of the timestamp for Facebook)
This contest will close at 10pm Eastern on October 31, 2010. (I had to give myself time to get home from trick-or-treating to close the contest).
Best of luck to you.
¹Too Long Didn’t Read