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A garment steamer is an electrical device that uses steam to remove wrinkles from clothes. It works via stream. The hot steam penetrates deep into the fabric, loosening the bonds between fibers so they can be stretched flat again. There are two types of garment steamers: travel and full-size. Travel ones are intended for occasional use, while full-sized ones are more powerful – you need less time using them to get the same results as with smaller models.
Before we get into the specific features to look for in a garment steamer, let’s check first the other common types of iron available to better assess whether this garment iron is really the right one for you.
Common types of Iron:
There are two types of common irons used for garment care: steam irons and dry irons. Steam irons use water to create steamed vapor, while dry irons do not use any water – but they both remove wrinkles from clothes.
A steam iron maintains an even flow of hot steam that penetrates deep into the fabric, loosening the bonds between fibers so they can be stretched flat again. A steam iron produces continuous steam flow that continuously smooths out wrinkles as you pass it over your garments. This is in contrast to a dry iron, which heats up and lets you press down on a piece of clothing for less than a minute until the wrinkles come out. It has no tank and uses only electricity and heat to reduce or totally get rid of wrinkles from your clothes.
To get started with your new garment steamer, you should familiarize yourself with its main features before deciding which model to buy. Here are some key characteristics you should consider when making this purchase:
Size and Weight
he travel-sized models are lighter and smaller than full-sized ones. They hold less water, which means you have to refill them more often – but it is a small inconvenience for using this handy little machine that can be moved anywhere you need it. For example, if your garment steamer has wheels, then you know that you can move it from one place to another with minimal effort. It will also conveniently fit even in your hand-carry bags, although it’s best to check first with your airline whether this is allowed.
Even if you do not intend to travel a lot with your garment steamer, going for the lighter one is still advantagous because it will be easier to hold and use for a longer time compared with a heavier one.
Water Tank Capacity
This feature should also be considered especially if you intend to travel with your garment steamer because it determines how long you can use the steamer before having to refill it. It is recommended that you buy a model that has at least 90 minutes of continuous steam – usually, this translates into two hours or more of real world performance before needing a refill. Fill capacity is measured in milliliters (ml) and should be as close as possible to 150 ml when buying your new garment steamer, although they are all above 100 ml already.
Basic models only have variable steam temperatures while advanced ones have multiple options for increasing temperature. Why is this important? The higher the temperature, the faster your fabrics will become smooth and wrinkle-free. High heat also minimizes damage to delicate fabrics such as silk and satin because it kills germs and reduces oxidation; this means not only fewer wrinkles but also less creasing.
Steam Hose Length
What good is a garment steamer if its steam hose is too short? More than just an inconvenience, a short hose can make it harder for you to reach specific areas of your garments – especially those at the back that cannot be reached by holding the steamer close to your body. Look for one that has a length of 47 inches, or 120 cm or more – although again, they are all above 50 cm already.
When shopping for a garment steamer, pay attention to the number and quality of accessories included in the package. Some manufacturers include several attachments with different purposes so that users have everything they need to clean their clothes without investing in additional tools.
Is Garment Steamer the Right One for You?
If you have been using a dry iron to smooth out wrinkles from your clothing, then you might want to consider getting a garment steamer instead. It is better because it cleans and sterilizes fabrics so the result is not only wrinkle-free but also sanitized without any harmful chemicals. Save time and effort in removing wrinkles from clothes since this machine does all that for you with just a single pass.
But, one important thing to remember is this is not the most comfortable iron to use for a longer period or with a huge bulk of clothes. Garment steamer is ideal for smaller batches of ironing.