Steam Cleaner Water Tank

How Does Steam Cleaning Work? (All Your Questions Answered!)

*As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases. The price to you remains the same.

Did you know steam cleaners do more than just clean? Studies show steam cleaning kills about 99.99% of bacteria. Also, it inhibits mold growth and dust mites. This was a part of the reason why I like steam cleaning more than regular cleaning.

We live in central Florida. And, for most of the year, the weather remains humid here. The moisture has always been a breeding ground for dust mites and mold growth. Thus, now and then, the dirty carpet would give me nightmares. To add to that, my daughter has allergies, which was always at the back of my mind. Every time she would play in the living room, my antennae went up.

I had been trying different cleaning hacks for the past two years. But with kids around, every other day, the carpet gets dirty. A few months back, I was out for my weekly groceries at Costco when I saw steam cleaners. Standing there, I read a couple of reviews and articles. I went back home with the new steam cleaner in my car trunk.

And that was my wisest decision ever. I never saw my carpet this clean since we moved in. Let me tell you what I learned and why I made this happy choice.

What Is A Steam Cleaner?

Steam cleaners function by producing dry steam. This steam, at optimal setting, removes trapped dust and dirt buildups.

I bought the steam cleaner to clean my living room. But now, I even use it for cleaning other rooms with hardwood flooring. Steam cleaning can work both on hard and soft surfaces.

Steam Cleaning

The water under high heat and pressure cleans and sanitizes surfaces. You can also rely on steam cleaning for killing bacteria, dust mites, and mold growths.

How Does Steam Cleaning Work?

Steam cleaners consist of a boiler, steam vacuum, detergent compartment, and tank. They also come with different accessories, including brushes and refill.

In short, you fill the boiler tank with water (You can optionally add a cleaning liquid to the water, though it’s not necessary). You can set the temperature and power settings and let the boiler preheat for 8-10 minutes (depending on the model you use).

Once it’s ready, you choose the right accessory and let the steam do its work!

How Does a Steam Cleaner Clean A Carpet?

Now, let’s come to how steam cleaning works on a carpet. The steam vapor penetrates the carpet fibers.

This loosens and softens the dirt. This way, you can remove the stubborn layers of dirt.

You can deep clean and disinfect your carpeted floor. Steam cleaner removes all the trapped debris, pollen contaminants, and dirt.

Steam is the water heated to an exceptional degree. When applied to any surface, this hot vapor instantly kills bacteria, dust mites, molds, fungus, etc. That is why apart from being a cleaner, steam cleaning is also a disinfectant.

How To Steam Clean A Carpeted Floor?

Steam cleaners are most effective on carpeted floorings. They clean, sanitize, and disinfect the carpets pretty well.

I can see a visible difference in my carpet between now and then. I no longer worry about my kids playing on the rug.

Follow these steps for an effective steam cleaning session:

  1. Clean around the room and shift the furniture aside.
  2. Vacuum the area thoroughly. This will remove the loose dirt, dust, and crumbs.
  3. Treat the stains with any stain cleaner or brush.
  4. Prepare the steam cleaner. Fill the water tank with distilled water. You may or may not add a cleaning solution.
  5. Wait for the water to heat up and boil.
  6. Turn on the steam cleaner. Adjust the settings for a high temperature and low pressure. This will produce only dry steam.
  7. Take straight rounds across the carpeted room. Cover every corner and dirty spot.
  8. Leave the room for a few hours. The carpet takes about 6 to 8 hours to dry well.

Benefits Of Steam Cleaning

Here are some of the benefits of steam cleaning:

Deep Cleaning

Within a week, carpeted floorings get full of dust and dirt. The steam penetrates deep inside the surface and removes the trapped dirt. It removes stubborn layers of dirt.

Disinfects The Surface

The regulated pressure steam lifts pollen contaminants and dust mites. The high temperature kills bacteria and mold.

These allergens need a moist surface to breed on. But, steam cleaners produce dry steam, which doesn’t leave any moisture. This eliminates the chances of allergies and skin reactions.

Restores The Sheen

You can notice the difference in your carpet’s texture and luster. The brand new carpet has a soft feel and matte sheen as compared to a used one. Steam cleaning refreshes the rug, thereby restoring its shine. You can walk barefoot, feeling the soft surface.

Carpet Sheen

Extends Carpet Life

Carpets are prone to wear and tear. Regular use reduces their life.

Steam cleaning renews the original beauty of the carpet. Deep cleaning and sanitization extend the life of its fibers.

A lot of my friends have kids my age. They often feel helpless about their dirty carpet. It is unsafe to let the kids around dust and dirt ridden carpet.

I shared my experience with some of them and answered some of their questions. Have a look:

Is it hard to steam clean your carpet?

You can always steam clean your carpet rather than calling a professional. Steam cleaning the carpet is as easy as mopping. It only involves an extra step for settings adjustment.

Once you have the optimal settings, the steam cleaner is ready. You have to move it in straight runs across the room.

Is steam cleaning effective?

Steam cleaning is one of the most effective cleaning techniques. It cleans, sanitizes, and disinfects the surface.
It removes the trapped dirt and grit and sanitizes the surface. It also kills the mites and bacteria which thrive on moist surfaces.

Will steam cleaning cause discoloration to my carpet?

In general, people don’t add any cleaning solution to a steam cleaner. The distilled water steam is good enough for deep cleaning. Distilled water vapors don’t cause fading or discoloration. Instead, it provides a deep cleaning action.


Steam cleaning is the most reliable and effective technique for cleaning and sterilization your home. You can see a visible difference immediately. It is easy to use, and you can’t argue with the results.

Steam cleaning sanitizes and disinfects the floor. Also, it restores the original luster of the flooring.

No more worrying about dirty floors and carpets. I got my solution; get yours today!

Top Picks