Does Steam Cleaning Disinfect?

Cleaning is a basic need of every house. And if you have children or pets around, then it becomes necessary that you choose a chemical-free cleaning solution that gives you a clean surface but at the same time, kills all the germs. Steam cleaning is one of the best ways to get a germ free house. A sanitizer is another product that can remove all the viruses from an area.

However, the question is about superiority, which one of them is better at disinfecting?

How Well a Steam Cleaner Disinfects?

At steam temperature varying between 175 and 245 degrees Fahrenheit, a steam cleaner is capable of disinfecting an area within three minutes. Within the given time, steam will kill all the germs including bacteria, virus, mold, and mites, without the use of any chemicals. To get these results, you need a steam vacuum, which will be useful while cleaning various floor types and objects.

As stated earlier, a regular steam based vacuum can throw steam of up to 245 degrees Fahrenheit (118.33 degree Celsius), which is more than enough to kill 99.9 percent of the germs and allergens. Most of the bacteria are very stubborn. Exposure to steam for a short period cannot break their resilience. So, we recommend you to use the steam cleaner at least for three minutes on an object to denature all the germs, even the toughest ones. Not only microbes, but at this temperature, you can also remove fleas, dust mites, silver fishes, and bedbugs from mattresses and variety of floors.

Apart from germ removal, steam vacuums will also give you a clean surface without spending much time and energy. You will not have to stress your arms while scrubbing, nor you have to expose yourself to toxic chemicals.

A sanitizer will also remove all the germs, but it will utilize chemicals. There are sanitizing machines available as well, but that will only work when you place an object inside the given cabinet.

Steam Cleaning Vs. Sanitizing

Now you must be wondering whether you should choose a chemical based sanitizer, which is harsh but still, doing the job. Or you should look to a different level of cleaning via utilizing a steam vacuum. We will discuss the same in this section.

Cleaning your house using a sanitizer will give you the solution, but will raise a problem as well, especially for those who have kids in their home. If you are using sanitizer to “disinfect” the floor, but indirectly you are harming the kids by introducing chemicals in their life cycle. It’s is the area where steam cleaner scores overshadow sanitizers because the former uses only water produced steam to kill the germs: no toxic chemicals and no bad smell, hence no danger to the kids or pets. Even if you have a newborn or a crawler in your house, you can use steam cleaners without any worry or threat to them.

Benefits of Using a Steam Cleaner

We have already discussed how a steam cleaner effectively removes all the known germs and allergens and sterilizes an area better than any other product. Other benefits give you several reasons to choose steam cleaning over chemically based sanitizers.

  1. Versatile cleaning. You can use a steam vacuum on any heat insensitive surface or object in your house. From floor, walls, curtains, mattresses, furniture, to ceilings, you can clean almost any material or area. No need to tell you again that it also disinfects the cleaning surface, if used at a temperature of more than 212 degrees Fahrenheit or 100 degrees Celsius.
  2. Cost effective. Purchasing a steam cleaner is a one-time investment. In the future, you will not be spending anything on stain cleaners, sanitizers, brushes, mops, or dust bags that are required for bagged vacuum. If you will purchase a steam vacuum with washable filters, then there is no need to buy filters as well.
  3. Environment-friendly. Steam vacuums use only water to produce the steam, so none of the chemicals are either released in the food system, air or water supply. Also, you do not have to throw any packaging to increase the landfills. All you need is a tank full of regular water.
  4. Perfect for individuals who have asthma. Some chemicals can work as a trigger for users who have asthma. A steam cleaner prevents any such possibilities by killing dust mites and all the other allergens. You can have a good steam cleaner and the best allergy vacuum for better controlling dust mite allergies in your home.
  5. Helpful in removing the infestation. If you have a dog or a cat in the house, then you know how difficult it is to get rid of the fleas. Steam cleaners are the perfect solution in such cases because they are capable of killing and eradicating them at all their life cycles. You can use a steam cleaner to kill fleas and other insects from crevices, grouts and other hard to reach corners. Also, steam cleaners deodorize the home and relieve you from all types of pet odor.
  6. User-friendly. Steam cleaners are very easy to operate and gives you quick yet efficient results. As we stated earlier, you do not have to scrub the area of wait for long. Within a few seconds, you will see a clean surface. Overall, it is the fastest and most convenient way of cleaning.


There are certain precautions that you need to follow while using a steam cleaner.

  1. Never mix vinegar or any chemical to the water tank in thought of getting better results. The substances may or may not be suitable for your floor or tiles. It can also harm the internal parts of the cleaning device.
  2. Do not get tempted high enough to use the steam cleaner at high temperatures all the times. Use the settings suggested by the manual. High-temperature steam can damage many materials or discolor them.

Bottom Line

Use the right settings on the steam vacuum, and it will give you better results than any of the sanitizer or stain removers available in the market. However, not all of them are made for the same purpose. If you are looking to purchase a new vacuum, you have a look at the best steam based vacuum, here. We hope you will choose the best cleaning solution for your house and family.


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