Last Updated: Oct 15, 2021 @ 1:29 pm.

What's the best steam mop for your floors? We tried out several top models and then surveyed our readers (2.1 million parents strong!) to find which steam mops live up to the hype. If you've got sealed stone or ceramic tile floors, these steam mops can help clean stains and grout. Here are the ones we'd recommend.

FYI: We've been rating and reviewing products for the home and families since 1994. We don't take money or freebies from the brands we review. Our work is 100% reader-supported! So we greatly appreciate you reading this article!

Best Manual Steam Mop

Easy on the wallet—but requires pumping!
Loved this model if you only have a small bathroom to clean. Reversible heads and swivel steering make this model great—if you don't mind the manual pumping action to get steam.

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Best Manual Steam Mop: Shark Steam Pocket Mop

Let’s talk steam mops. One reason why these mops are now popular: you can clean a floor without chemicals or soaps. After trying out several models and surveying the readers of our parenting books (2.1 million strong!), we’ve realized some truths about steam mops:

Truth #1: Steam mops are best for ceramic tile and sealed stone floors. Yes, we realize that steam mop makers claim you can use them on ALL sorts of flooring, including hardwoods. But we’d recommend just using them on stone and tile that have been sealed (that typical tile you see in a bathroom is sealed ceramic tile). There is too much risk for damage in using a steam mop on other surfaces, in our opinion.

Truth #2: Steam mops comes in both manual and electronic versions. Our readers preferred electronic, although manual steam mops are easier on the wallet. The only caveat: manual steam mops must be pumped back and forth to generate enough steam . . . consider it a cardio workout as you clean.

Truth #3: Use distilled water! This is the key to keeping a steam mop running smoothly over the long run. Why? Distilled water removes all the impurities and sediment in the water. Tap water, on the other hand, can clog the tiny steam holes in a steam mop—potentially damaging it. Yes, you can clean a steam mop with vinegar to remove hard water deposits . . . but it makes more sense to use distilled water.

When it came to manual steam mops, we tried out several models before deciding the Shark Steam Pocket Mop is the best bet for most folks.

What We Liked

• Best for small areas. If you need to clean the tile in a small bathroom or two, this model is a good fit.

• Easy to assemble.

• Reversible head.

• Easy on the wallet.

• Both sides of pad can work. This mop includes 2 washable, reusable cloth pads.

• Swivel head is easy to maneuver.

What Needs Work

• Cord could be longer. We thought the 20 foot cord worked well for small bathrooms—but not so good for larger rooms.

• Manual pump = lots of manual pumping!

• Doesn’t work as well on grout as other models, in our opinion. See below in this article for more suggestions.

Best Steam Mop for Grout

Weighs just 6 lbs.
The spot boost brush is the star here—the mop head removes to let this brush tackle tougher stains and grime in grout. 25 foot cord, easy to use. Quick 30 second ready time.

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Best for Grout: Bissell Steam Mop Power Fresh Cleaner (Model 1806)

Cleaning grout is one of the key reasons folks like steam mops. After surveying our readers who use steam mops, we think the Bissell Steam Mop Model 1806 is the best bet for this. Here’s why:

What We Liked

• Lightweight.

• Tackles grout grime better than other steam mops, in our opinion.

• Boost scrubber brush. Basically, this is a removable wand with a brush end—you can use this to tackle tough stains. This is nice if you have more than the usual level of grime (that is, kids or pets).

• 25 foot cord.

• 2 steam settings provides different levels of control.

• Only takes 30 seconds to heat up—that’s faster than other models we tested.

What Needs Work

• Harder to maneuver than  others. Yes, the heads swivels, but we thought this steam mop was less maneuverable than others we tested.

• Noisy.

• The cleaning heads could be easier to put on.

• Water tank isn’t removable. Instead, you fill it up with a cup (that’s included). Some folks like that; others prefer a removable tank that can be filled at the sink. (Remember to use distilled water, however!). The next model reviewed in this article has a removable water tank.

• Draining water tank isn’t easy. If you have extra water, it is harder to remove from this model than one with a removable water tank, in our opinion.

Budget-Friendly Steam Mop

Fragrance discs fit in mesh pocket
Excellent model with 23 foot cord that is easy to assemble and use. Quickly heats water and has 3 steam settings. We also like the removable water tank, that can be filled over a sink.

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Budget-Friendly: BISSELL PowerFresh Steam Mop, model 1940

This model is very similar to the Bissell Steam Mop 1806 recommended above, but there are a few minor differences:

• This model has a 23 foot cord. The model 1806 cord is 25 feet.

• Three levels of steam. The 1806 model just has two.

• The water tank on this model holds slightly less water (15 ounces vs. 19 ounces for the 1806).

• Removable water tank. This model has a tank that can be removed and filled at a sink. The 1806 model requires you to fill it with a cup (which is included). Most folks we interviewed for this article prefer the removable water tank.

• This model doesn’t have the “spot boost brush” as we described on the 1806. This is truly an optional feature—if you don’t need to scrub extra tough stains, then you won’t miss the spot boost brush much!

• Easier on the wallet.

Best Electronic Steam Mop

Impressive maneuverability
Our favorite feature of this steam mop: you can swap out the mop heads without touching them! Loved the overall quality of this model, plus easy to use.

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Best Electronic Steam Mop: Shark Genius Hard Floor Cleaning System

Electronic steam mops let you automatically control the steam that comes out of the mop—no pumping required. We tried out several electronic steam mops, comparing how well they cleaned both tile and sealed stone floors.

For the best electronic steam mop, we would recommend Shark Genius Hard Floor Cleaning System. Here’s why:

What We Liked

• Mop heads easy to switch out. You don’t even have to touch the pads—that’s a key plus in our book.

• 3 levels of steam. We liked that level of control—sometimes you need more steam than others!

• Easy to assemble.

• Excellent maneuverability. 

• Double sided washable pads.

• For tough stains, mop heads flips over so steam comes out directly in front.

What Needs Work

• Not the best at cleaning grout.

• More robust them the manual model.

Why Trust Us

We’ve been rating and reviewing baby gear, including high chairs, since 1994. We do hands-on testing—we buy the products with our own money and evaluate with an eye toward safety, ease of use and affordability.

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