For many people looking for a new household cleaner, a steam mop is often the choice they make. Steam can make cleaning even heavily soiled areas far easier, and it is perfect for use on sealed hard surfaces, but there are a huge number of models to choose from, so how do you know which steam cleaner is the right one for you.
We’re here to make that decision easier by reviewing all of the most popular cleaners on the market, and today I’m going to be taking a look at the Dirt Devil Steam Mop 3-in-1 Versa Steam Cleaner. As well as looking at what this particular cleaner is capable of in terms of cleaning on a variety of surfaces, I’ve covered how well it’s been made, what complaints cropped up numerous times from customers, and what people liked about it the most, so without delay, let’s get right into it.
The Dirt Devil Steam Mop
Dirt Devil are a well known name in the cleaning industry, and they’ve been around a long time. Originally founded in 1905 in Cleveland, Ohio, the company built the first domestic vacuum cleaner with a patented Cyclone system back in 1955. That has been the technological basis for every vacuum that has come along since then, and since the 1980’s Dirt Devil have specialized in smaller hand-held cleaners that aim to bring the same cleaning power we can get for our carpets and floors, to our cars, kitchen accessories and pretty much anywhere that we can reach.
The Dirt Devil Steam Mop is in many ways a traditional steam mop, recommended for a variety of surfaces, but particularly useful for tiled floors, sealed wooden floors and deep steam cleaning in the kitchen and bathroom, but this product, in line with Dirt Devil’s focus on portable cleaners, has a detachable section that allows you to use the steam cleaner on stairs, soft furnishings and your stove, oven and microwave. But how effective is it at doing any of these things? And what sort of quality can you expect from this product?
- What’s Included
- Dirt Devil steam mop handle
- Detachable hand-held steamer
- Triangular mop pad frame
- Detachable carpet glider
The Dirt Devil Steam Mop is sent to you with the mop head needing to be screwed into the handle, all customers agreed that it was a fairly simple process, although that is probably just as well, as the instruction manual for this product is not exactly easy to follow. You can find a copy of the manual on Amazon, but it won’t make much of anything particularly clear. You can also find a copy of the warranty for this product, but once again, it doesn’t explain exactly what the warranty covers, or how long a period of time it’s valid for.
Once you’ve assembled your Dirt Devil Steam Mop, you simply fill the water container, which holds around a pint, and then plug the cleaner into the power. Steam is produced fairly quickly, within about 30 seconds, and you’re ready to go. The steam function of this product is not, unlike several other steam cleaners on the market, variable. The steam is either on, or off, and for many users this was a major problem.
Several users found that the amount of steam was far too much, or far too hot, and many people noted that this caused large amounts of water to be left on their floor. An equal number of people, around 30% of reviewers, found that the steam function was highly efficient, able to lift incredible amounts of dirts off of their floors. But by far the biggest number of complaints about this products, were all regarding the durability of the steam system, which I’ll come back to in a while.
This is not a large cleaner. Although I was unable to find it’s exact height anywhere. Based on reviews, pictures and comments, I’d estimate it’s around 36 inches high, and many reviewers noted that it was far too short to use without bending over. One lady of 5 feet exactly could just about use it without bending, but if you’re even average height, you’ll need to bend a lot to use this cleaner. Several reviewers compared this cleaner to a child’s toy, several others noted that the cord was not particularly long, although again, I was unable to find it’s exact length, and several users found that the mop head was so small that cleaning anything other than a small apartment was likely to require a huge amount of effort
The Mop is light and easy to move about, it weighs in at about 3 pounds and is mainly constructed from plastic. Several reviewers noted that this was a big advantage, but once again an equal number of reviewers saw this in a negative light. More than a few remarked that the plastic was too thin, or that the cleaner was too flimsy for anything but the lightest of cleaning applications.
Several reviewers noted the as the mop head was particularly small, this product made heavy work of cleaning even small areas. There were satisfied customers who found it perfect for their needs, and there were around 25% of reviewers who had used this cleaner regularly for an extended period of time who were still entirely satisfied with it.
The mop pads are microfiber, our recommended mop type, and machine washable, and as some positive reviewers noted, they were highly effective at picking up almost incredible amounts of dirt from their floors. Many users with hardwood, laminate or tiled floors were initially impressed with the cleaning efficiency of this cleaner, but the mop pads are not made with durability in mind.
The pads are flimsy to say the least, ‘paper thin’ was an observation made by more than one or two reviewers, and several users noted that they would use two, or even more, during one clean around the house. Several other users found that the pads tore or ripped after only one of two uses, and with a pack of two replacement pads costing either $8.33 or $12, depending on whether you opt for the shaggy or smooth pads, constantly replacing them could prove to be expensive over time.
The Dirt Devil Steam Mop has received 490 customer reviews on Amazon, and 52% of them were generally positive four or five star reviews. Many of these found this cleaner highly effective on tiled floors, hardwood floors and sealed surfaces, but that is only half the story. 48% of reviews were generally or completely negative, and the same issue cropped up on a large number of them, namely the reliability of the steam system.
Many users found the steam to be completely inefficient, producing far too much moisture and hardly cleaning their floors at all, several others noted that the cleaner, which comes complete with a carpet glider attachment for cleaning carpets, left even short pile rugs completely soaked in seconds, and not any cleaner than when they had started, but by far the biggest problem was that the steam system just stopped working after a relatively short period of time.
The water container is designed for tap water. Chemicals or solutions should not be added, and distilled water is recommended for optimum performance, but many reviewers found that even if they followed that advice, the cleaner would stop producing steam completely after just a few uses. Users who found that it worked once before failing were fairly numerous, and many went into large amounts of detail about exactly how poorly it had performed even when it did work.
Although around half of users found this to be an efficient cleaner that operated well, the other half of users who reported problems soon after buying this product often made exactly the same complaints, and the phrase ‘A complete waste of money’ was repeated often.
Does it Clean Well?
So in terms of customer satisfaction, the Dirt Devil Steam Mop does have some serious drawbacks that many unhappy customers reported, but how effective is it in household cleaning situations when everything goes well?
For the 50% of users who were satisfied with this cleaner, several found that tiled floors were an ideal surface for this cleaner, as well as several who found it ideal for hardwood floors, but again the positive reviewers were matched by an equal amount of unhappy users who found that the cleaner left large amounts of water on their floors, and the inability to control the amount of steam produced, left several users unable to use it on their wooden floors, due to fear that the great blasts of steam combined with very thin pads would damage the shine on their floors.
Although the hand-held detachable section of the cleaner is designed to be perfect for cleaning kitchen appliances, once again many customers found problems with the steam function that made doing this more trouble than it was worth. Several noted that steam was not produced if the hand-held section was held at too much of an angle, and others noted that it would leak.
Unfortunately, due to the large amount of users who experienced problems with the steam function fairly soon after buying this cleaner, I’m left with the impression that many who appeared satisfied with it were simply yet to experience the issues that appeared to be almost inevitable in the future. Many negative reviewers did note that the cleaner had worked well, for a short period of time, and if they would have made a review earlier, then it would have been far more positive, but ultimately, the durability problems that had quickly cropped up had left them dissatisfied, and feeling that they had wasted their money.
I also noticed that none of the many complaints for this product on Amazon, had received an answer, explanation, advice or offer of help from any of the sellers or the manufacturer
Cost & Pricing Information
The Dirt Devil Steam Mop is currently available on Amazon.com for $44.11, and although this is cheaper than most other Steam cleaners on the market, there are obviously some durability issues with the product. Many of the customers who were unhappy considered this product to be cheap, and compared it unfavorably to steam cleaners from other manufacturers. In particular, many considered it to be an inferior product to Shark Steam cleaners in terms of its performance, durability and general design.
Replacement mop pads for this cleaner are available on Amazon for $8.33 for a pack of 2 Shaggy microfiber pads, that have raised edges for added cleaning ability, or $12.00 for a pack of 2 standard smooth microfiber pads. Many customers were highly unimpressed with the thickness, quality and durability of the microfibre pads, with several remarking that one pad would only last for about half a room before it needed replacing.
Overall, it would be dishonest of me to say that this cleaner compares well to other similar products on the market. The numerous complaints about both the unreliability of the steam function, and the generally poor quality of the mop pads, make this a cleaner that is unlikely to offer competitive cleaning ability for extended periods of time. Other steam cleaners on the market sell for more, usually around $80-120, but in this case I would have to say it’s probably worth spending the extra money if you want a cleaner that you can rely on for a significant period of time.
Dirt Devil Steam Mop Overall – Is It Worth It?
Lightweight and easy to use
Steam is produced quickly
Detachable hand-held section suitable for portable steam cleaning
Not that durable, and not suitable for heavy cleaning or commercial use
Steam function is not variable, either on or off
Small mop head and height, unsuitable for large areas or tall people
Overall, this cleaner was found to be unreliable and unsatisfactory for around half of the reviewers who bought it. Although cheaper than most steam cleaners, and potentially effective on small areas, the durability problems noted by many users suggest that this is not a cleaner that will offer years of problem-free cleaning.