How to Use and Maintain a Steamer or Iron?

Aug 03, 2023, 16:55pm

Proper use of your steam generator is essential for your ironing to be efficient, but also for your steam generator to last longer. To do this, you must regularly maintain and descale your steam generator.

Steamers and irons are indispensable household appliances for most people, helping to keep clothing and linens looking their best. However, the effective use and maintenance of these appliances is key to their performance and longevity. This article will guide you through the basics of using and maintaining a steamer or iron.

How to Use and Maintain a Steamer or Iron?

How to Use a Steamer or Iron

1. Understand the Fabric:

Always look at the label on your fabric or garment before starting. The label will provide you with essential information about what heat setting you should use. Some fabrics are delicate and require lower temperatures, while others can withstand higher heat.

2. Fill the Water Reservoir:

Use distilled or demineralized water to fill the reservoir of your steamer or iron, up to the indicated line. Avoid using tap water as it contains minerals that can build up and damage your appliance over time.

3. Preheat the Appliance:

Plug in your steamer or iron and set it to the desired temperature according to the fabric you’re working with. Wait until it’s fully heated before using it – most appliances will have an indicator light that will let you know when it’s ready.

4. Iron or Steam Your Clothes:

If using an iron, press down gently and move it in a back and forth motion on your garment. If using a steamer, hold it slightly away from the fabric and allow the steam to penetrate and relax the fibers, removing wrinkles.

5. Cool Down:

After use, turn off the appliance and allow it to cool down completely before storing it.

How to Maintain a Steamer or Iron

1. Regular Cleaning:

Regular cleaning is important to prevent the build-up of minerals and other debris. Most manufacturers recommend cleaning the appliance every few weeks, depending on usage. Check the instruction manual for specific cleaning guidelines.

2. Descaling:

If you live in an area with hard water or have used tap water in your appliance, descaling should be part of your maintenance routine. Descaling involves using a specific solution or white vinegar to clean the internal parts of the steamer or iron and remove mineral deposits.

3. Emptying the Water Reservoir:

Always empty the water reservoir after each use to prevent the growth of mold and mildew. Leaving water in the reservoir can also lead to unnecessary mineral build-up.

4. Check for Wear and Tear:

Inspect your steamer or iron regularly for signs of wear and tear. This includes checking the cord for any damage, inspecting the soleplate for any scratches, and making sure all buttons and dials are working properly.

5. Safe Storage:

Store your steamer or iron in a safe, dry place. Avoid wrapping the cord tightly around the appliance, which can cause it to fray or break over time.

How to Use and Maintain a Steamer or Iron?


When the soleplate is dirty, it leaves marks on the fabric. Similarly, the good gliding of an iron depends on its state of cleanliness. To prevent this from happening, the soleplate of the iron should be cleaned regularly.

Dirt is formed mainly from detergent residues and fabric fibers.

  • The soleplate of the iron should be cleaned while it is still warm.
  • You will have to wait a few minutes after the ironing session for the soleplate to cool down, otherwise you risk damaging the iron as well as burning yourself.


There are several ways to clean the soleplate of an iron. You can support iron with the products you use every day:

  • Clean the holes in the soleplate by removing limescale and dirt with a vacuum cleaner.
  • Wipe the soleplate with a soft, lint-free cloth.
  • Clean the iron with warm soapy water, wiping with a sponge, do not use the abrasive part.
  • Wipe the sole with a cotton swab dipped in white vinegar and fine salt. After that, do not forget to wipe the soleplate of the iron well.
  • Cut off half a lemon and run it over the soleplate.
  • Clean the sole with a piece of dry soap and rub it with a sheet of newspaper. You can also use Marseille soap and wipe with a paper towel.

You can also use less common cleaners:

  • Use a small stick of iron stain remover.
  • If the sole is caught on linen, it can be cleaned with fine emery cloth. If you are afraid that the sandpaper will damage the sole, you can cover it with a clean cloth and rub it. It is important to rub well in the direction of length.
  • To remove residual dirt from the soleplate, you can place paraffin strips or candles between two pieces of wool and iron them with a hot iron. After this operation, it is important to clean the soleplate of the iron with absorbent paper.In order not to damage the soleplate of your iron, you should categorically avoid using:
  • Scouring or abrasive products;
  • steel wool overlays;
  • Never clean the soleplate of an iron while it is still hot.


Knowing how to properly use and maintain your steamer or iron can greatly extend its lifespan and keep it working efficiently. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for use and care. With a little bit of regular maintenance and proper usage, you can keep your clothes looking their best and get the most out of your appliance for many years.