Pay Attention to What You Get When You Buy a Commercial Steam Cleaner

Commercial steam cleaners have been around for years now. There are many companies that offer a variety of different all purpose and even specialty steam cleaners. In some cases, the industrial steam cleaners sold as specialty cleaners are really just all-purpose models with special attachments. There can be a lot of confusing information out there for business managers and business owners, which can make it a bit difficult in making the decision as to whether or not it is time to invest in a commercial dry vapor steam cleaner or not or which model and manufacturer is best to invest in.

Part of the issue here is a confusion in terms when it comes to describing something as a steam cleaner. You can run out to almost any home goods store and buy what is called a steam cleaner. The reality of it is that these are residential models instead of industrial or commercial steam cleaners. The differences between residential and commercial steam cleaners are great.

A residential steam cleaner is typically a hot water and cleaning solution injection and extraction unit. It works a lot like a rug shampooer. It shoots a mixture of warm or hot water into carpets, agitates the mixture with a series of brushes like a vacuum, and then sucks the mixture along with dirt, grime, and debris up. One of biggest issues with these residential steam cleaners is that they are reliant upon cleaning solutions that often leave a residue on your carpets, so even when it is done, the carpet does not feel clean. In reality, it is not clean, it has left the cleaning solution and dirt behind. In many cases, the surface area has been cleaned while dirt and liquids have been pushed down to the  carpet padding, which will show back up again once the area has dried, settled, and been walked on again.

There are dry vapor steam cleaners available on the residential market. These are typically small, hand held devices that shoot forth a pressurized jet of steam. They usually hold less than a gallon of water and are made for doing small areas at a time. They are ill suited for larger tasks. Furthermore, the quality of engineering and materials available in these residential dry vapor steam cleaners is much lower than the level of quality and materials as is to be expected in industrial dry vapor steam cleaners. The industrial and commercial steam cleaners are designed to last longer, handle bigger jobs, and overall last longer. Residential units often have a variety of plastic components that are designed to wear or break relative soon when compared to the metal components of the industrial models.

But, if a commercial steam cleaner is not a residential steam cleaner, and it does not clean the carpets like the ones that can be purchased at the local store, what is it?

The commercial dry steam vapor cleaner is designed to clean a variety of surfaces including walls, grills, kitchen hoods, tile, grout, cement, machinery, upholstery and more. In fact, some models have a water extraction unit built in and others may require the purchase of a water extraction unit separately, but they can also be used to clean carpets and rugs. They produce temperatures that should approach 200 degrees at the active end of the nozzle. Temperatures in the tank may exceed 300 degrees. When looking at different industrial dry steam cleaners, pay particular attention to this. Ask if the temperatures being noted in the sales materials are in the tank or at the active end. It is highly unlikely that temperatures much higher than 200 degrees are at the active end.

The benefit to this higher temperature of steam is multifold. For one, it allows the unit to produce a jet of 95% or great steam. That means there is no water left to clean up when the job is done. It also means the unit can be used in hard to reach areas and does not lead to mold and rust as other cleaning methods might. Furthermore, those high temperatures are going to sanitize a wide variety of surfaces. Most germs and bacteria die off at around 140 degrees. That’s the same temperature it takes to kill off bed bugs. Some more virulent strains of bacteria may need up to 160 degrees to die off, but at 180 degrees Fahrenheit or better, you can be pretty sure that the industrial steam cleaner is cleaning as well as sanitizing. Finally, the higher temperature available in commercial steam cleaners allows the molecular bonds between surfaces and foreign substances to be broken down which means no—or a lot less—scrubbing to remove dirt, grime, and other debris.

Another important facet in regards to the industrial dry vapor steam cleaners is that they do not require the use of harsh cleaning chemicals. It is the power of heated water—steam—that will be cleaning your office, warehouse, restaurant, or whatever you need cleaned. These devices are used by professional cleaning companies, hotels, hospitals, labs, government and military installations, and more. The units not needing those additional cleaning chemicals pays off for business owners a few different ways. It is certainly more environmentally responsible to minimize the hazardous chemicals we use in our businesses. This also means that there should be no allergic or otherwise negative reaction that employees, customers, or vendors may sometimes have to common or uncommon cleaning agents including detergents, solvents, and enzymes. By not needing those chemicals anymore, how much would you save your company. Many companies save thousands in their first year by simply eliminating their reliance on various cleaning detergents.

When you do take the time to look at industrial and commercial steam cleaners, however, you have to be sure to pay careful attention to what it is you are getting. For one, is there a manufacturer’s warranty? How long is that warranty and what does it cover? What attachments does the unit come with and what attachments are available for purchase? Do you have to order your attachments and supplies through only certain vendors? What kind of lead time do they need? Is this model going to accomplish what you need? Some who plan on using the dry vapor steam cleaners regularly for larger jobs may consider purchasing a continuous flow model rather than a water tank model commercial steam cleaner. Have no doubts when you make that purchase, as you need to be comfortable with it and you need to know that you received satisfactory answers to all of your questions regarding buying a commercial steam cleaner.