We Tested the Best Steam Mops to Spruce Up Your Floors

The BLACK+DECKER 7-in-1 Multipurpose Steam Cleaner is our top pick

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Black+Decker steam mop in action on concrete floor

The Spruce / Tamara Staples

A quality steam mop uses steam to lift away grime, scuffs, and stubborn stains, leaving your floor spotless—without the use of any cleaning solution. "Increased interest in steam [cleaning] was a natural evolution of the green trend, as steam doesn't use any chemicals, but packs a super-strong cleaning punch," says Melissa Homer, The Spruce's Cleaning Review Board member and Chief Cleaning Officer at MaidPro. We researched and tested steam mops in The Lab and at home, evaluating their overall efficiency, capacity, steam output, and accessories. 

Our best overall pick is the BLACK+DECKER 7-in-1 Multipurpose Steam Cleaner because it heats up quickly, is effective on numerous surfaces, and comes with multiple attachments to help you achieve a deeper clean.

Here are the best steam mops, backed by our thorough testing and research.

Our Top Picks

Best Overall: BLACK+DECKER HSMC1361SGP 7-in-1 3-Speed Multipurpose Steam Cleaner

4.8
The BLACK+DECKER Multipurpose Steam Cleaner comes with an array of attachments.

Lowe's

Our Ratings
  • Effectiveness
    4/5
  • Versatility
    5/5
  • Portability
    5/5
  • Ease of Assembly
    5/5
  • Noise Level
    5/5
What We Like
  • Can be used upright or as a handheld steamer

  • Steam glove accessory

  • Heats up quickly

What We Don't Like
  • No agitation tool

  • Expensive

What do buyers say? 81% of 200+ Amazon reviewers rated this product 4 stars or above.

The BLACK+DECKER 7-in-1 Multipurpose Steam Cleaner blew us away in our testing in The Lab. It comes with multiple attachments and can switch from an upright to a handheld steamer in just seconds. Its outstanding performance and versatility make this steam mop our top pick overall.

When we tested this steam mop, it heated up almost instantly. If you're looking to clean your floors quickly, this is an important feature. The initial mop setup was straightforward and took less than ten minutes, which is on par with other steam cleaners and mops. Once we put this steam mop to the test, it got an intense soy sauce stain off our tile flooring and left nothing but fresh, sparkling tile behind. Our tester loved that this steam mop was lightweight and easy to maneuver, earning it 5-star ratings in usability and portability.

Besides being easy to use and powerfully effective, this steam mop comes with a plethora of attachments and tools that really make it a multipurpose cleaning system. While it's on the expensive side, this one purchase can replace several household tools. Your purchase comes with a 2-in-1 steam mop and handheld steamer, a grout tool, a copper brush, a plastic brush, an adjustable steam nozzle, an accessory hose, a steam-glove accessory, a fabric steamer, and replaceable pads for the mop and steam-glove. The steam-glove is an especially intuitive and clever solution that helps you access hard-to-reach spots an upright or handheld appliance can't and also apply more dedicated pressure to tough stains. Our testers did note the machine leaked water when changing attachments, so use extra caution when switching from one attachment to another.

If you're looking for a steam mop with the same power but fewer bells and whistles, you should check out the BLACK+DECKER BHSM15FX08 Multipurpose Steam Cleaner—the latest version of this mop that's a good bit cheaper. It doesn't include the steam-glove accessory, which we really loved, but that may not be necessary for your household if you're sprucing up just your floors.

All in all, if you're looking for a steam mop that can get your floors clean and do so much more, opt for the BLACK+DECKER 7-in-1 Multipurpose Steam Cleaner.

Power Source: Corded electric | Surface Type: Hardwood, laminate, tile, grout, stainless steel, glass, fabric | Tank Capacity: 19.6 ounces | Weight: 6 pounds

What Our Testers Say

"The BLACK+DECKER steam mop just seemed really intuitive, because it feels like a regular mop or small vacuum. It was very lightweight, and it cleaned well even though it took a bit of time. If you're new to steam cleaning, this is a good place to start as a beginner. It's less intimidating than other models."—Jenica Currie, Product Tester

Best Budget: Bissell 1940 PowerFresh Steam Mop

3.8
Bissell 1940 PowerFresh Steam Mop Hard Floor Steam Cleaner, Blue
Courtesy of Amazon.com.
Our Ratings
  • Effectiveness
    5/5
  • Portability
    4/5
  • Ease of Cleaning
    5/5
  • Overall Value
    5/5
  • Usability
    5/5
What We Like
  • Multiple steam settings

  • Includes scrubber brush

  • Generously sized water tank

What We Don't Like
  • No additional accessories

  • White plastic body will show wear

The Bissell 1940 PowerFresh Steam Mop works on most types of hard flooring, including sealed hardwood, marble, granite, ceramic, linoleum, and laminate floors. Unlike many other models that produce continuous steam, this one produces three levels of steam on demand to kill bacteria and germs. That, combined with the flip-down easy scrubber brush, earns this mop top marks for getting out tough, dried-on messes (Think, days-old cat puke or spilled wine.) while still remaining safe to use on your flooring. Plus, it delivers this powerful performance at a reasonable price.

This steam mop doesn't come with any extra accessories except for BISSELL fragrance discs to leave your floors smelling fresh, so it's not the most heavy-duty option on the market. It does, however, have a nice 16-ounce water tank that will get you through all your messes. Our real-world tester noted this steam mop was exceptionally easy to use and performed just as well as options that are much more expensive. If you're looking for something that's affordable, reliable, and easy to use, this BISSELL steam mop is a great option.

Power Source: Corded electric | Surface Type: Hardwood, ceramic, linoleum, granite, marble | Tank Capacity: 16 ounces | Weight: 6 pounds

BISSELL PowerFresh Steam Mop
What Our Testers Say

"Arguably the best feature of the Bissell PowerFresh Steam Mop is its water tank—a removable 16-ounce bottle that clicks into the unit. It was very easy to refill, much easier, in fact, than some of the more expensive models we’ve reviewed."—Brie Dyas, Product Tester

Best Splurge: O-Cedar Microfiber Steam Mop

4.8
O-Cedar Microfiber Steam Mop

Amazon

What We Like
  • Heats up quickly

  • Lightweight

  • Triangular shape

What We Don't Like
  • Small tank capacity

  • No attachments

The O-Cedar Steam Mop is a fan-favorite for its ease of use and stellar cleaning abilities, especially when it comes to steam cleaning hardwood floors. When it comes to steam mops, it's one of the most expensive ones you can buy that doesn't come with any additional attachments or features. However, on its own, it's such a solid steam mop that it's worth the investment.

This mop is easy to set up and use. The mop head heats up in only 20 seconds and features an adjustable steam level for ultimate control. Even on the lowest setting, it cleaned our real-world tester's floor in one pass. The triangular shape of the mop head allows you to get into every nook and cranny in your house, like behind the toilet or in tight kitchen corners, too. Our tester reported that she was happy to see that the cleaning pad didn't shrink in the wash and looked as good as new. Her only complaint was with the water tank. It's on the smaller side, and there's no water level indicator, so she didn't know it was out of water until the steam subsided mid-clean.

The O-Cedar Microfiber Steam Mop can clean sealed hardwood, tile, laminate, and vinyl flooring as well as carpet. A snap-on glider attachment turns this steam mop into a carpet-friendly, stain-removing machine, and our tester was ultimately surprised to see dirt and stains lift off of her area rugs in just a few passes.

Power Source: Corded electric | Surface Type: Hardwood, laminate, tile, vinyl, marble, carpet | Tank Capacity: 13.5 ounces | Weight: 5 pounds

O-Cedar Microfiber Steam Mop

The Spruce / Sage McHugh

What Our Testers Say

"I found it easier to use and far less messy than a traditional mop and bucket. After one pass with the mop, visible dirt on the floor was gone. Even on sections of the floor that looked clean to the eye, I was surprised to see dirt on the cleaning pad."—Sage McHugh, Product Tester

Best for Hardwood Floors: Shark S5003D Genius Hard Floor Cleaning System Steam Pocket Mop

4
Shark Genius Steam Pocket Mop System (S5003D)

Amazon

What We Like
  • Comes with two double-sided pads

  • Touch-free pad release

  • Multiple steam settings

What We Don't Like
  • A little pricey

  • No scrubbing attachment

The Shark Genius Hard Floor Cleaning System is a popular steam mop for a reason. While it works on a variety of different floor types, our tester was amazed that this mop managed to clean dirt and debris off of her hardwood floors, even though they didn't look visibly dirty. While it's a little pricey, several features make the Shark Genius worth the investment. It has three steam settings, including a Steam Blaster option that you can use to target tough messes and dirty grout, but what really makes this steam mop stand out is its double-sided pads.

When using a steam mop, it's important to change the pads once they're dirty to avoid spreading germs around your floors. Since the Shark Genius comes with two double-sided pads, you can confidently clean a large area without worrying about spreading dirt around. On top of that, its touch-free release feature saves you from handling damp, dirty cleaning pads.

Our tester noted that the unique circular design of the handle made this steam mop easy to maneuver, and the initial setup was simple, too. For the price, we just wish there was a scrubbing attachment for stickier messes. Also, take note that this is an excellent option for cleaning properly sealed hardwood flooring. As with any steam mop, use on unsealed wood flooring may cause damage to your hardwood floors.

Power Source: Corded electric | Surface Type: Hardwood, tile | Tank Capacity: 11.8 ounces | Weight: 5.8 pounds

Shark Genius Steam Pocket Mop System

The Spruce / Joline Buscemi

What Our Testers Say

"Moving it over the floors was easy and smooth, but we still found ourselves working up a sweat while using the Shark. It was worth it when we saw how much dirt it had picked up already. We thought our wood floors already looked clean, but the mop gave them a little extra sheen. The mop head always revealed that the floors were actually quite dirty, as they ended up grayed by dust and dirt."—Jolene Buscemi, Product Tester

Best for Tile Floors: Shark S3501 Steam Pocket Mop Hard Floor Cleaner

Shark Handheld Cleaners Steam Mop

Amazon

What We Like
  • Affordable

  • Heats up quickly

  • Double-sided pads

What We Don't Like
  • Small tank capacity

  • No additional attachments

The Shark S3501 Steam Pocket Mop is a simple, no-frills steam mop that works on a variety of surfaces. We didn't test this mop, but it's a beloved option for anyone with tile floors. It doesn't come with a tile grout brush, but using a cleaning mixture on your tile grout, wiping it away, and then using the Shark mop as the final touch will leave you with a sparkly clean bathroom or kitchen.

This powerful steam mop offers three different settings—dust, mop, and scrub—so you can adjust based on what surface you're cleaning. Not only is there a level for every type of job, but this machine is also safe to use on most flooring, including laminate. This mop does have a small tank capacity, so it's not the best option for larger areas, but the included reusable mop pads are double-sided, so you get more cleaning mileage out of each use—whether it's a quick wipe down or a deep clean.

Power Source: Corded electric | Surface Type: Hardwood, laminate, tile, stone, marble | Tank Capacity: 15 ounces | Weight: 4.9 pounds

Best for Pet Owners: Pur Steam World Multi-Functional Steam Mop

PurSteam Mop

Amazon

What We Like
  • Multiple attachments included

  • Can use as an upright or handheld steamer

  • Lightweight

What We Don't Like
  • Small capacity

  • White plastic body will show wear

Have a furry friend in your household? The Pur Steam World Multi-Functional Steam Mop is our pick for pet owners because it can be used on a variety of surfaces and comes with multiple attachments and cleaning pad replacements. Use the handheld steamer to steam clean your couch that your dog insists on jumping on, and then switch to the upright to tackle your floors. The replacement pads make it easy to switch out the cleaning pad if you've steam cleaned through a questionable spot on the floor (like the area by the door where accidents tend to happen). We didn't test this mop, but we believe the numerous features speak for themselves.

This lightweight steam mop will clean and kill germs on almost every type of hard flooring, and it also works on fabric. That means you can use the detachable handheld steamer to steam clean your upholstery, including sofas and drapes, and de-wrinkle clothing, too. Three different steam settings mean you can find the just-right temperature (Though, you should always start with the lowest one.), steam away, and then get back to playing with Fido.

Power Source: Corded electric | Surface Type: Hardwood, tile, vinyl, marble, fabric | Tank Capacity: 12.8 ounces | Weight: 2.2 pounds

Expert Buying Tip

"Always use distilled water in your steamer, even if the manufacturer says you can use tap water. Tap water can leave mineral deposits inside the machine that eventually clog the steam holes and make it stop working."—Melissa Homer, The Spruce's Cleaning Review Board member and Chief Cleaning Officer at MaidPro

Best Features: Bissell 1544A PowerFresh Lift-Off Pet Steam Mop

4.3
Bissell 1544A PowerFresh Lift-Off Pet Steam Mop

Amazon

What We Like
  • Works on a variety of floors

  • Additional attachments

  • Can function as a handheld steamer

  • Easy to set up

What We Don't Like
  • Heavy

  • Difficult to store

  • Challenging to fill the water tank

Steam isn’t just helpful for cleaning floors. It can be used to clean numerous other areas of your home, which is why you may want to consider a feature-packed pick like the Bissell PowerFresh Lift-Off Pet Steamer. This steam mop comes with 13 additional attachments that allow you to use it on everything from curtains to grout.

This versatile tool includes a lift-off pod that you can take the handle off of, essentially transforming it into a handheld steamer. The helpful attachments include a window squeegee, fabric steamer, grout tool, flat scraper, extension hose, fragrant disks, and more. This steam mop was incredibly simple to set up, but our real-world tester noted the water tank is a little difficult to fill, due to its opening placement on the side of the tank. Once it was filled, the steam mop heated up in less than 30 seconds and quickly cleaned grout, kitchen appliances, and even her furniture, though.

Although skeptical at first, our tester decided that this steam mop's higher price tag is justified since it could replace a variety of other household cleaning tools. Take note that it's a bit bulkier than other options and, thus, harder to store. You'll likely need to store it in a dedicated space in your laundry room or utility closet.

Power Source: Corded electric | Surface Type: Hardwood, ceramic, linoleum, granite, marble, grout, glass, fabric | Tank Capacity: 13.5 ounces | Weight: 10 pounds

Bissell PowerFresh Pet Lift-Off
The Spruce / Brie Dyas
What Our Testers Say

"The Bissell PowerFresh Pet Lift-Off is one of the most expensive steam mops on the market. While that may dissuade you from purchasing it, its wide variety of uses means you can replace a few of the dated tools in your closet. The Lift-Off has so many other applications—it can be used to clean grout and even serve as a garment steamer—and it’s far more cost-effective than buying a handful of additional specialty products."—Brie Dyas, Product Tester

Best with Vacuum: Bissell 1132A Symphony All-in-One Vacuum and Steam Mop

BISSELL® Symphony™ Pet All-in-One Vacuum and Steam Mop- Disco Teal 1543T

Courtesy of Target

What We Like
  • Simplifies cleaning routine

  • Vacuum dust bin stays dry

  • Can use on multiple surfaces

What We Don't Like
  • Vacuum is not powerful

  • Vacuum can get clogged

To properly use a steam mop, you must first vacuum up dirt and debris in the area so that your mop doesn't just move it around. Wouldn't it be great if there was an appliance that did both? The Bissell Symphony All-in-One Vacuum and Steam Mop is here to do just that. We didn't test this product, but it's one of the only ones on the market that can vacuum and mop, saving you time on chore day.

With the Bissell Symphony, you can easily switch back and forth between vacuuming and steam mop modes, so you can vacuum up your cereal crumbs or cat hair, and then immediately mop the area without having to get out another appliance. The vacuum dust bin stays separate (and dry) from the other parts of the machine, but you may notice that the brush roll occasionally clogs. With any two-in-one appliance, sacrifices are made, and here you may have to sacrifice the power of a high-tech vacuum for the convenience of a two-in-one appliance.

Power Source: Corded electric | Surface Type: Hardwood, ceramic, linoleum, granite, marble, carpet | Tank Capacity: 12.8 ounces | Weight: 9.7 pounds

Final Verdict

Our top pick for a steam mop is the BLACK+DECKER 7-in-1 Multipurpose Steam Cleaner because it has everything you need to deep clean your home. It's easy to use, comes with multiple attachments, and heats up almost instantly. If you're looking to spend a little less, opt for the Bissell PowerFresh Steam Mop. It delivers a powerful clean at half the price of other steam mops on the market, and features multiple steam settings.

How We Tested the Steam Mops

We spent two days in The Lab in Industry City, Brooklyn testing steam mops, steam cleaners, and upholstery machines in order to find the best products available today. We conducted long-term, at-home tests with several steam mops to see how they really stood up against long-forgotten couch cushion stains and everyday wear-and-tear. Any additional picks were thoroughly vetted based on our testing categories as well as third party reviews.

In our lab testing, we timed the setup of each mop, making note of how long it took to prepare the product for use. Then, we evaluated each model's effectiveness on a stained tile surface. After noting how many passes it took to clean up a stain, and working with the steam mop's features and attachments, we rated its versatilityusability, and portability.

At home, testers rated additional picks on the same attributes after tasking them with real-world situations, like neglected bathroom floors. We boiled down all of our testing insights and research to the steam mops we believe are the very best.

An illustration of what not to do with a steam mop

Illustration: The Spruce / Ellen Lindner

What to Look for in a Steam Mop

Reservoir Capacity

"If you're going to invest in a steam cleaner, do the research and select a model you can actually use and maintain properly," says Homer. "Beyond the maintenance, look for models with the most versatile attachments, largest tank, and highest wattage heater you can afford, as these key features will really determine how much usage you can truly get out of the machine."

Consider what areas you’ll be cleaning regularly. If you have a larger home, choose a steam mop with a capacity of around 16 ounces. A larger reservoir might mean a more cumbersome appliance (although this isn't always the case), but if you have a big area to clean, you’ll spend less time refilling the tank. On the flip side, if you're only cleaning a medium-sized bathroom or a small apartment, a smaller reservoir will suffice. Most residential steam mops have a 12 to 15-ounce water tank capacity.

Steam Output

Do you have kids or pets? If so, look for a model with an adjustable steam output so you can crank up the heat when you need to tackle tough stains. This will give you greater control for a more personalized clean. Steam controls vary among different models—some mops come with specific presets, while others have an adjustable knob for even greater flexibility.

When steam cleaning your floors for the first time, always start on the lowest setting and work your way up to a higher level, if needed. Homer warns that even simple residential steam cleaners can cause damage to your skin or your floors, so always follow the instructions when operating your device.

Accessories

A basic steam mop is great for occasional cleaning jobs, but some options come with extra tools that make it easier to reach certain areas of your home. Popular extras include grout tools, scrub brushes, squeegee tools, and even fabric steamers. Models with special nozzles for windows, blinds, countertops, and car upholstery are typically more expensive than your basic steam mop, but they are also more versatile and could potentially replace some of your other cleaning tools.

Shark Genius Steam Pocket Mop
The Spruce / Joline Buscemi
FAQ
  • How do you use a steam mop?

    Steam mops come in different shapes and sizes and most have an adjustable steam output. Before using your steam mop, vacuum your floor to ensure that it's free of larger debris and dust particles. Once you've vacuumed, prepare your steam mop by filling the water tank with distilled water and letting it heat up. Your steam mop will usually let you know when it's ready to go (usually by a light on the handle).

    Choose your desired level of steam output, starting with the lowest setting. If you have a tough stain to tackle, work your way up to a stronger output. If your pad becomes dirty, have clean ones on hand to change out while using. This way you won't be smearing around any excess dirt or grime onto the floor.

  • Are steam mops good on all types of floors?

    Steam mops should only be used on sealed floors since excess moisture can cause damage to other kinds of surfaces. Generally, steam mops are safe to use on vinyl, linoleum, ceramic or porcelain tile, some types of sealed hardwood, and some laminate flooring. If you're unsure about whether you can use a steam mop on your particular floors, check with the flooring manufacturer.

    If you'd like to test sealed hardwood floors to see if it's safe to use a steam mop on them, you can do so by dripping a few drops of water onto the floor. If after five minutes the water hasn't been absorbed into the floor, it's probably safe to use a steam mop.

  • Can you put floor cleaner in a steam mop?

    Although there are some dual-function steam mops on the market that use both water and cleaning solution, for most models, you should not put floor cleaner in a steam mop. Most steam mops are designed to be used with water and nothing else. The hot, high-powered steam does a great job of cleaning and sanitizing surfaces on its own.

Why Trust The Spruce?

This article was written by Anne Fritz, a freelance writer with over 20 years of experience covering home topics. It was updated by Erin Johnson, a commerce editor at The Spruce, focusing on appliances, cleaning, and organization. Erin has hands-on experience developing and leading tests in The Lab. You can also find her work on Real Simple, Better Homes and Gardens, Apartment Therapy, and Southern Living.

For this roundup, Erin sorted through testing data from The Lab, as well as at-home testing reports from our long-term product testers. She also considered each steam mop's ease of use, steam output, capacity, additional features, practicality, and customer reviews. Additional insight was provided by Melissa Homer, The Spruce's Cleaning Review Board member and Chief Cleaning Officer at MaidPro.

Article Sources
The Spruce uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. Common Questions About Cleaning Hardwood Floors. Hardwood Distributor's' Association.