Can Essential Oils Be Used In A Steam Cleaner

Steam Cleaning With Essential Oils: How to Do It And NOT Damage Your Steamer!

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Welcome to the world of Steam Cleaning with Essential Oils.

If you’ve ever dreamt of a cleaning routine that not only refreshes your space but also transports you to a realm of delightful scents, then you’re in for a treat.

In this aromatic journey, we’ll unveil the secrets of harnessing the power of steam alongside the invigorating essence of essential oils, ensuring your home is not just impeccably clean but also infused with soothing fragrances fit for royalty.

Once you enjoy the benefits of steam cleaning with essential oils, you will never be content with ‘just’ cleaning ever again.

Get ready to elevate your cleaning routine to a whole new level of sensory delight!

BUT WAIT – it’s not just about a fresh-smelling home; it’s also about ensuring you don’t damage your beloved steamer in the process. And that’s what I’m going to teach you today.

Resting after Steam Cleaning With Essential Oils

How to Properly Use Essential Oils With a Steam Cleaner

Before you rush to infuse your trusty steamer with aromatic essences, you might have questions:

How much should I use?

Is this safe to do?

Will this ruin my steamer?

As I mentioned above, you can use essential oils in a steam mop, the amount of which will vary depending on the type of oil.

It’s safe when used correctly, but can damage your steam cleaner if you don’t know what you’re doing. It’s essential (pun intended) to navigate the potential pitfalls and protect your beloved appliance from harm.

Choosing The Right Essential Oils

The first step in this aromatic adventure is choosing the right essential oils. Opt for oils renowned for their antibacterial and antiviral properties.

Tea tree, eucalyptus, lavender, and lemon are some of our royal favorites. Ensure that you’re using pure, high-quality essential oils to maximize their benefits.

Additionally, consider another piece of advice from the good doctor, Dr. Axe: “You should only stick to a handful of essential oils.”

In essence: keep it simple. (And out of your carpets and rugs.)

If you’re looking for a calming oil, use lavender. If you want something to help remove grease, try citrus.

You could also go for the doctor’s advice: when in doubt, frankincense. (Frankincense is supportive for your health and has anti-inflammatory properties).

Do your research to determine what you want from your oils, and buy accordingly from reputable sellers.

Preparing Your Steamer

Next, familiarize yourself with your steamer’s user manual. You’ll want to check for any warnings or restrictions related to using additives like essential oils.

Do not add essential oils directly into the water tank as this can damage or clog the machine. Also, be careful when you use the oils on the mop pad as it can also irreparably ruin fabrics and other materials. 

Whether you use the essential oils in a Shark or a Bissel steam mop, make sure to put a few drops of essential oil onto the backside of a steam mop pad. This acts as a diffuser. 

Diluting Your Essential Oils

Essential oils are mighty concentrates, and using them undiluted can spell trouble for your precious steamer. Dilute the essential oils with distilled water.

A general rule of thumb is to use 5-10 drops of essential oil per gallon of water. Distilled water helps ward off mineral buildup within your steamer.

Using the Right Attachment and Setting

Steam cleaners are equipped with various attachments and settings tailored to different cleaning tasks. Select the attachment and setting best suited for the surface you intend to clean. Delicate surfaces should steer clear of concentrated steam, as the heat and pressure can cause damage.

The Cleaning Process

Prepare the Surface: Start by removing loose dirt, dust, and debris from the surface. Steam cleaning works most effectively on surfaces that are already reasonably clean.

Adding Essential Oil Dilution: Pour your diluted essential oil mixture into the designated compartment or container of your steam cleaner, following the manufacturer’s instructions for adding liquid solutions.

Test Your Royal Elixir: Before you embark on your grand cleaning adventure, test a small, inconspicuous spot to ensure that the essential oil-infused steam doesn’t cause any damage or discoloration.

Commence Cleaning: Now that you’re ready, steam clean as you normally would, following your steam cleaner’s user manual. Glide the cleaner evenly and slowly over the surface to achieve the best results.

Moderation Is Key: Use essential oils in moderation. Excessive use can lead to clogs or damage to your steamer. Start with a small amount and adjust as needed.

Post-Cleaning Ritual: After steam cleaning, consider wiping down or rinsing surfaces to remove any residual essential oil residue, especially on surfaces that come into contact with food.

Maintaining Your Royal Steamer

A steamer is a great tool for maintaining the household so it is important to maintain your steamer, too.

After each use, empty the water tank, clean the nozzle, and adhere to the manufacturer’s recommendations for maintaining your steam cleaner. 

Regular maintenance will prevent clogs and extend the life of your beloved machine.

Storing Your Steamer

Last but not least, store your steamer in a dry and clean place, ensuring it’s completely dry before putting it away. This will ensure your steamer is ready for the next royal cleaning session.

Pros of Steam Cleaning With Essential Oils

Steam Cleaning With Essential Oils

Steam cleaning with essential oils significantly boosts your cleaning power.


Because essential oils boast disinfectant as well as anti-microbial, anti-viral, and anti-bacterial properties. Yes, steam cleaning on its own has very similar benefits, but essential oils do offer that added oomph. The germophobe in you will rejoice.

Death to fleas and their larvae!

Not only this. (If I’m starting to sound like a cheesy salesman, forgive me.)  Essential oils also help by incorporating a fresh smell with a very safe and natural oil.  You also get the bonus of cleaning in such a very eco-friendly way. 

More benefits:

  • Eliminated pet odors.
  • Much fewer chemicals.
  • Easier to reach crevices and cracks.
  • Effectively removes dirt buildup and residue. (More on that in our article on how steam cleaning removes stains.)
  • Mold-busting properties.

Always start with a modest amount of essential oil and adjust accordingly. In rare cases, using too much essential oil can prove harmful, but this is unlikely.

Even so, I think this is important to cover.

Possible Dangers of Essential Oils

Okay, so maybe my word choice is a little bit dramatic. But we can never be too careful around our home especially if you have kids and pets going about in the household.

These natural and plant-based oils can have negative effects IF overused and IF you are pregnant, or have animals in the house.

But don’t close this article just yet! 90% of the time, you have nothing to worry about.

In fact, the Mayo Clinic suggests using certain essential oils during pregnancy, including peppermint, lavender, and rose. 

Generally speaking, when essential oils are used aromatically, and not topically or internally, there’s little to worry about. 

The issue is that there just isn’t enough research, and so it’s better to be safe than sorry.

Protect Your Animals

Pet safe Steam Cleaning With Essential Oils

Animals react to things differently, as humans do.

Think about how that nourishing and food-coma-inducing dark chocolate turns into a deadly poison of mass destruction for our dogs. 

That same logic should be applied to essential oils. 

Dr. Axe, a certified natural medicine doctor, says to be careful when using these oils around pets:

(This is not a complete list, head over here for more information.)

  • Birch oil
  • Tea Tree oil
  • Camphor oil
  • Oregano oil 
  • Clove oil
  • Thyme oil

The Best Essential Oils to Use

Don’t waste money on essential oils that either have shady or no research or which shouldn’t be called essential oils in the first place! Many oils are actually fake synthetic copies or are sprayed with pesticides.

This contradicts our ultimate goal of steering away from harmful chemicals.

When buying an oil, always look out for:

  • A label saying it’s 100 percent pure.
  • Whether it’s organic or not.
  • Whether it’s made up of pure plant essences or not. 

(In essence, look out for frauds.)

Used for over 3000 years in both Chinese and ayurvedic medicine, these oils can provide many cleaning as well as health benefits, if the TRUE oils are purchased.

So once you’ve determined that you have a supplier with real oils, here are a few you should consider buying:

Lavender Oil

If you struggle with anxiety, lavender oil is for you. Known to promote calm, this oil is great for those stressful periods of life. 

It also boasts the added benefit of having anti-allergy properties. Add a great smell to boot and you’ve got an excellent steam-cleaning buddy. 

Citrus Oils

No essential oil acts as a better degreaser than citrus oils. You can opt for:

  • Lime
  • Lemon
  • Orange
  • Grapefruit
  • Mandarin

The list goes on! 

You also get the bonus of some antioxidant protection, toxin removal, and respiratory aid. (And the lovely smell of orange peels!)

Eucalyptus Oil

Great at removing mold and mildew, eucalyptus oil is a must in any essential oil toolkit. (purses work fine too.) This oil also helps with congestion issues: chronic sinusitis sufferers, take note!

With the power of steam and the natural benefits of essential oils, your home can become a sanctuary of freshness and purity.

Whether you’re seeking a more sustainable, chemical-free cleaning approach or simply want to elevate your cleaning game, this method has you covered.

May your home always be a haven of cleanliness and delightful scents. Happy steam cleaning!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Steam Cleaning With Essential Oils

Can I put lavender oil in my steam mop? 

Lavender is a great choice if you’re looking for an emotionally soothing and gentle-smelling oil. However, you should never put it IN your steam mop’s tank. Instead, pour a few droplets on the mop pad.

Can you put eucalyptus oil in a steam mop? 

Eucalyptus oil is a great mold-buster choice. Just be careful when using it around your pets as this oil has been known to be very toxic if used improperly and in incorrect amounts.

How do you prevent water stains when steaming with essential oils?

To prevent water stains, use distilled water in your steam cleaner instead of tap water, as tap water can contain minerals that leave deposits. Also, ensure that the steam cleaner’s nozzle or brush is clean and free from mineral buildup.

Are there any precautions for steam cleaning if I have pets in the house?

Yes, keep pets away from the area you’re steam cleaning until surfaces are fully dry to avoid potential burns. Additionally, choose essential oils that are safe for pets and ensure proper ventilation.

Is steam cleaning with essential oils safe during pregnancy?

Steam cleaning with essential oils can be safe during pregnancy if you use appropriate essential oils and maintain good ventilation to avoid inhaling excessive vapors. It’s a good idea to consult your healthcare provider for personalized advice.

Can you use vinegar in a steam cleaner to clean and disinfect?

It’s generally not recommended to use vinegar in a steam cleaner because the acidic nature of vinegar could damage the machine’s internal components. Instead, use water and essential oils for fragrance and cleaning.

What surfaces should you avoid steam cleaning with essential oils?

Avoid steam cleaning delicate surfaces like antique furniture, unsealed wooden floors, and certain types of natural stone (e.g., marble) that may be sensitive to heat and moisture.

Can I use essential oils to clean and sanitize my carpets with a steam cleaner?

Yes, you can use essential oils in your steam cleaner to clean and freshen carpets. Ensure you choose essential oils safe for use on fabric and check your steam cleaner’s compatibility with carpet cleaning.

How often should I steam clean with essential oils to maintain a fresh-smelling home?

The frequency of steam cleaning with essential oils depends on factors like household traffic and personal preference. Once a week to once a month should suffice for most areas.

Can steam cleaning with essential oils help with allergen removal?

Steam cleaning can help reduce allergens like dust mites and pet dander by effectively cleaning and sanitizing surfaces. The addition of essential oils can also create a pleasant and allergen-free environment.

Are there any precautions when steam cleaning around children or infants?

Keep children and infants away from the area being steam cleaned until surfaces are dry to prevent accidents. Also, use child-safe essential oils and ensure proper ventilation.

Can steam cleaning with essential oils replace traditional disinfectants for high-touch surfaces?

Steam cleaning with essential oils can effectively sanitize surfaces, but it may not completely replace traditional disinfectants in high-risk areas. It’s advisable to consult relevant guidelines for specific disinfection requirements.

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