What not to steam? Surprising things you should avoid in your steamer!

Steam cleaning can be a highly effective way to remove dirt and grime from a variety of surfaces, but there are some materials that should never be subjected to this cleaning method. If you are planning on using a steam cleaner, it is important to know what surfaces you should avoid. Some materials that should not be steamed include:
  • Bamboo: Bamboo is known for its durability and resilience, but it is also highly absorbent. The moisture from steam can cause the bamboo to warp and crack.
  • Porous surfaces: Materials such as unfinished wood, unsealed concrete, and certain types of drywall are highly porous and can quickly become saturated with water. This can lead to warping, buckling, and even mold growth.
  • Marble: Marble is a porous material that is easily damaged by heat. Steam can cause the marble to crack or discolor, so it is best to avoid using it as a cleaning method.
  • Stucco and masonry: These materials are both highly porous and absorbent, making them prone to water damage. Using steam to clean stucco or masonry can cause discoloration, warping, and even structural damage.
  • Cardboard: Steam cleaning can cause cardboard to warp due to the heat. It’s best to avoid using a steam cleaner on cardboard boxes, as it can cause irreparable damage
  • Overall, steam cleaning can be an effective cleaning method for many different surfaces, but it is important to use caution and avoid using it on materials that are prone to water damage. Knowing what surfaces to avoid can help you keep your home looking great without causing unnecessary damage.
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    When it comes to cleaning, steam cleaning has become a popular method due to its effectiveness and eco-friendliness. However, not every surface can be cleaned with steam. In fact, certain materials such as bamboo, porous surfaces, marble, stucco, and masonry should not be steam cleaned. why is that so? Let’s explore.

    Bamboo and steam cleaning: Why they don’t mix

    Bamboo is a sustainable and eco-friendly material that has become popular in recent times due to its durability and design versatility. Although highly durable, bamboo is not recommended for steam cleaning. Heat and moisture from steam can cause bamboo fibers to swell and leave them vulnerable to cracking. In worst cases, bamboo furniture and flooring can lose their natural luster and begin to warp. As a result, it’s best to use an alternative cleaning method such as a gentle soap solution or a microfiber cloth to clean bamboo surfaces.

    The dangers of steam cleaning porous surfaces

    Porous surfaces such as brick, concrete, and sandstone have microscopic pores that are prone to absorbing water. Steam cleaning can cause a lot of moisture buildup on these surfaces, leading to long-term damage. The moisture can cause the surface to weaken, leading to cracking and other forms of damage. Moreover, the steam can force dirt and other impurities deeply into the pores, making it difficult to cleanse. It’s recommended to use a dry-cleaning method that’s less invasive to prevent damage.

    Marble and steam cleaning: A recipe for disaster

    Marble is a stylish and versatile material that’s mostly used for flooring, countertops, and shower walls. However, steam cleaning can be detrimental to its appearance in the long run. Marble is vulnerable to damage, and steam can cause the surface to become dull, yellow, or cracked. The heat from the steam can cause the marble to dry out, and if it gets wet again, it can cause the marble to become stained. This is because heat can cause marble to absorb water faster than usual. To avoid risking damage to your marble surfaces, it’s best to clean with a simple soap and water solution.
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    Can steam cleaning damage stucco and masonry?

    Stucco is a cement-based material that’s commonly used to cover exterior walls. It’s also a porous surface and just like masonry, it should not be steam cleaned. The heat from the steam can cause cracking and chipping, leading to long-term damage to the stucco/masonry. Most experts recommend using a low-pressure wash system to clean stucco and masonry.

    Why cardboard should not be steam cleaned

    Although cardboard is a useful material, it’s not meant for cleaning with steam. The heat from the steam can cause the cardboard surface to curl, warp, and even shrink. This can ruin intricate designs and artwork on the surface of the cardboard. Also, since cardboard is paper-based, it can quickly absorb moisture from steam, leading to long-term damage, and it’s not worth the risk.

    How steam cleaning can lead to mold and mildew growth

    Steam cleaning is an excellent way to rid your home of dust, dirt, and allergens. However, using steam on materials that can absorb water quickly like bamboo and porous surfaces can create a breeding ground for mold and mildew. Mold and mildew thrive in damp and humid environments, and steam generates that environment. Therefore, it’s recommended to avoid steam cleaning surfaces that are prone to moisture absorption.

    Steam cleaning alternatives for delicate surfaces

    For surfaces like bamboo, marble, stucco, masonry, and cardboard, it’s best to use an alternative cleaning method. Below are some cleaning alternatives that are safe to use: Vacuuming and dusting surfaces with a broom or a microfiber cloth.
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    Using a soft-bristled brush and a mild soap solution to clean surfaces that are not porous. Applying a dry cleaning method that uses no water, such as dry foam or steam cleaning that produces no steam. In conclusion, although steam cleaning is an effective and eco-friendly way to clean surfaces, not every surface can withstand the high temperatures and moisture that steam creates. Always consult with an expert before steam cleaning any surface and use alternative cleaning methods if necessary.

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