What is the best iron for home use? Modern, functional, comfortable. The home appliance has come a long way from antiquity to the present day (2021). But before, a simple cobblestone, which was heated on coals, served as an iron. Modern ironers have good steam power as well as smart extras.
The right choice of power
The strength of the steam boost and the supply of steam itself entirely depend on this important criterion. The most powerful ironing devices are considered to be 2500 to 3500 watts. Optimal values for saving energy: from 1700 to 2000 W., but irons with such indicators do not always cope with stale things and coarse fabrics. Steam boost is measured in grams, this is the amount of steam released by the holes of the soleplate per minute. The best indicators are from 200 to 400 grams.
Which sole is best?
Manufacturers have learned to make the sole durable and lightweight. So in 2021, they use anodized aluminum (light and durable) or cermet (ceramic-coated aluminum). Irons with a steel sole are produced less often than usual, the reason is that the material adds weight to the unit, and the cost of steel is more expensive than other metals. Therefore, stainless steel is also combined with ceramics.
Note each manufacturer has its own sole production technology and its own innovations, so the rating of the best irons 2021 is written with a detailed breakdown of the composition of the alloy. The number of holes and their shape (oblong is better) determines whether the item will be ironed thoroughly.
Almost all modern irons have a built-in thermostat and the function of spraying water onto the fabric. Therefore, most people choose a multifunctional good iron for the home at an average price, rather than the usual classics in a cheap version. Irons with a built-in steam generator are popular; such ironing devices can disinfect clothes in a second and give them a perfect look.
Ease of use
Comfort for the hostess in 2021, first of all, is why companies are increasingly abandoning bulkiness, a short cord, and other inconveniences. On the contrary, they began to equip ironing machines with a long wire rotating on a hinge, use anti-slip material for the handle, and indication. The modern ironer is tapered at the front for easy rotation when ironing.
The best irons in 2021 are designed with safe operation in mind: in addition to anti-drip and anti-scale protection. If the iron is left on the fabric or forgotten in an upright position, an automatic switch-off is provided (after a few minutes).
Criteria for choosing a good iron
Irons can be attributed to those household appliances, without which the household cannot do. Even if you wanted to, it still won’t work. Therefore, if you really choose, then so that he can easily and quickly solve any task, would not spoil things and, more importantly, the mood of his owners.
If you briefly decide on the basic requirements that a good iron must meet, then when choosing, first of all, you should pay attention to:
- power (for domestic use, usually 1.5–2‑2.5 kW is enough, lovers of more powerful equipment should take into account that such a device will load the network too much and can easily ruin delicate fabric);
- number of holes on the sole: in this case, the more, the better (at least 50, but about 100 is better), because the quality of steaming depends on it;
- the weight (in this case, the golden mean is important: with a too light iron it will be difficult to smooth out, for example, linen or some dense fabrics, and a hand that is too heavy can quickly get tired);
- water tank should be transparent enough to easily control the amount of water left for steaming, and voluminous enough so that it is not necessary to frequently turn off the iron during the steaming process to top up;
- power cable must be heat-resistant and of sufficient length (optimally 2–2.5–3 m) so that there are no restrictions on movement, in addition, it is very convenient when there is a 360˚ hinge and a place for winding;
- additional features: vertical steam (the ability to iron clothes, coats, jackets right on the hanger or curtains without removing them from the eaves);
- steam boost (supply of double power steam at the touch of a button);
- self-cleaning (descale inside the appliance) can be performed by pressing a special button, automatically when the “turbo steam” function is turned on; in some cases, the package includes a removable anti-lime rod, which will need to be cleaned periodically;
- “drop stop” system (drip stop), which will be useful when ironing with steam at not too high temperatures to prevent water droplets from the steam holes from falling onto the fabric;
- fire protection — a function due to which the device automatically turns off the power supply after it has ceased to be used (after 30 seconds with a horizontal position of the sole or 8 minutes with a vertical one).
The category presents universal novelties that are recommended to buy for home use. Each of the irons irons well, while it is equipped with several additional features that make ironing pleasant and comfortable.
Hottek HT-955–100 — ideal for a modest budget
An inexpensive iron from a second-tier manufacturer. It has a balanced price-quality ratio. The power of 2200 W provides ultra-fast heating of the steam generator, soles. The heating temperature of the sole is adjustable. The degree of heating is signaled by the LED indicator. The iron is capable of vertical steaming, there is a spray function, anti-drip protection.
- express heating;
- ceramic surface glides smoothly, gently affects the fabric;
- a self-cleaning function is provided.
- short cord;
- set of additional options.
Polaris PIR 2487AK — balance of functionality
Inexpensive model with the necessary set of functions. Polaris PIR 2487AK with enough power that is evenly distributed over the sole area. There is a steamer, but the power of the steam boost is inferior to models from the top segment (145 g / min.).
- power 2400 W;
- vertical steaming;
- anti-drop protection;
- a glass for water is included in the package of delivery;
- spectacular design;
- long cord.
- case made of glossy plastic;
- steam power.
What is the best soleplate?
A lot depends on the material of the sole of the iron — ease of ironing, durability, ease of use. Therefore, manufacturers pay a lot of attention to the material of the soles.
The most reliable are irons with a sole made of of stainless steel. Such a sole does not scratch, is not afraid of bumps and falls. The best irons with stainless steel soles are produced by Rowenta and Braun (Sapphire sole).
irons with ceramic coating glide on the fabric the best. But ceramics are more fragile than other coatings — they cannot be dropped, easily scratched by metal zippers or rivets. Over time, the ceramic coating may crumble. The best ceramic coated irons are produced by Tefal.
The rest of the coatings are complex combined materials — from steel, aluminum, ceramics, alloys. Manufacturers are looking for a compromise between ease of sliding and durability. For example, Bosch produces metal coated irons with ceramic elements. The coating of Philips irons — SteamGlide — consists of metal alloys, silicon, ceramics.
Types of irons
Before deciding which iron is better to buy, you need to decide what exactly you will use it for. Of course, the device is needed for ironing clothes, but the conditions for its use may be different. If you often travel on business trips, you need a compact device. If you plan to use it “professionally” — you will need the most powerful one.
According to these criteria, manufacturers and share their products. It makes no sense to compare devices of different categories with each other — they have different purposes, the characteristics will differ significantly. Comparisons are allowed only within the boundaries of categories, and there are only three of them.
- Road. This category contains the most compact models. They can be small or foldable so they take up minimal space in your bag or suitcase. Their important advantage is lightness, but one should not expect special power from them. Manufacturers provide power in the range of 800‑1200 W, which means that they do an excellent job with thin synthetic fabrics, but when ironing things made of thick cotton, difficulties can arise. Plus, they may not have a steam function, and if it is provided, the liquid reservoir will be very small. Therefore, even the best iron from the travel category is not considered by manufacturers as the consumer’s choice for every day. It is rather a lifesaver during a business trip for occasional use.
- household. This is the largest category of irons, which are also called classic. They are distinguished by their average size, an abundance of additional functions (the more there are, the more expensive the model), power from 1500 to 2500 W, the obligatory presence of a steaming mode — irons for the home are no longer produced without it. We will compile the quality rating of irons from these models, since they are usually of interest to buyers.
- Professional. Their power can reach 4000 watts. Such high rates are due to the fact that such irons are used to work with a large number of fabrics and for a long time. They must equally effectively and quickly smooth out thick cotton, linen, denim, so they are not only powerful, but also quite massive. For home use, they are more likely to be inconvenient, but for ateliers, tailoring workshops, they become indispensable helpers.
Manufacturers often lump home and professional models into the same category. Therefore, when choosing an option for the home, pay attention to power, as well as other features of irons that affect their durability and ease of use.
Iron or steam generator — which is better?
If there is a lot of ironing in the family, it is worth thinking about steam generator. The first thing everyone pays attention to when it comes to a steam generator is the price. It is high, but quite adequately correlates with the level of comfort and the possibilities of using such a device at home. I would also like to note several features of operation (it’s simply unfair to classify them as disadvantages — what they fought for …): firstly, the base requires separate placement (the board cannot withstand weight and bends), and secondly, standard ironing boards made of plywood or chipboard do not endure such intense exposure to steam and quickly become unusable, and water seeps through the metal. However, there must be holes in the board, otherwise the steam will wet the fabric. And remember — steam ironing requires care.
Saturn Intellitemp 305003
Let’s start with a very unusual model. Saturn Intellitemp 305003 is an iron with a built-in steam generator. A small pump allows you to get 50 grams of steam per minute at a pressure of 1.5 bar, and during ironing it constantly flows through 485 holes in the sole.
There is no usual temperature control here — the IntelliTemp system regulates it and the steam supply automatically. By the way, the flow of steam stops when the iron is placed in a vertical position.
In addition to constant supply, there is a steam boost mode (230 grams per minute). It can be used both to fight the most stubborn creases and to steam curtains or clothes on a hanger. In order to avoid scale stains on things, the iron has a self-cleaning mode and a special anti-lime cartridge.
Another interesting feature that we have never seen on irons is the illumination of the ironing area. The nozzle of the Intellitemp 305003 has a small LED that illuminates the area in front of the iron. The manufacturer emphasizes that on dark fabrics and on clothes with a complex pattern, the backlight allows you to better see the folds.
What kind of water to use in irons
There is an opinion that an iron or a steam generator is best filled with distilled or well-filtered water. Say, it will protect against scale, prolong the service life and get rid of troubles such as “spitting” rust or calcium on light-colored clothes at the most inopportune moment, etc. etc.
In reality, you just need follow the manufacturer’s recommendationsunambiguously spelled out in user instructions. Most modern irons are adapted for plumbing “refueling”. And it’s not that they are equipped with a cleaning system. Sometimes too sterile water in its properties does not correspond to the design features of individual models.
Case in point: Philips’ new high-powered irons often require a “run-in” of the appliance in tap water to activate a full burst of steam, so that the evaporating surface is covered with a thin layer of salts. And only after that it blows from the sole so that “mom don’t cry”!
Philips GC3925/30 PerfectCare PowerLife
- Type — steam iron.
- Power — 2500 watts.
- Water container — 300 ml.
- Large hole for filling water.
- SteamGlide Plus outsole (cermet + titanium).
- Auto temperature setting.
- Vertical steaming.
- Steam regulation.
- Steam boost, water consumption — 180 g / min.
- Continuous steam supply, consumption — 45 g / min.
- Water spray function, anti-drip system.
- Anti-calc protection, built-in cleaning slider.
- Can be used with tap water.
- Auto-shutdown, light indication.
- 1 color (black-violet), case — plastic.
- Dimensions (W × H × D) — 12.7 × 14.7 × 31.2 cm, weight — 1.485 kg.
- Cord — 2 m, ball attachment to the body.
Another steam iron from Philips — now the GC3925/30 models from the PerfectCare PowerLife line. Like the GC4556/20 Azur just reviewed, this appliance has a 2500W output, a durable SteamGlide Plus soleplate made of cermet with multilayer titanium coating, a 2m cord with ball attachment and a 300ml water tank. At the same time, this model has more compact dimensions and slightly less weight. The iron is capable of delivering a constant steam output of 45 g/min and a steam boost of 180 g/min.
The main feature of this model is the implemented OptimalTEMP technology, thanks to which the iron independently regulates the temperature settings depending on the type of fabric being processed. This allows you to iron things in any order without the risk of burning through the fabric or leaving shiny marks on it.
The device supports the functions of vertical steaming and auto-off, is characterized by increased stability in a vertical position, and can also be used with ordinary tap water. For descaling, the device has a special built-in slider.
- An independent laboratory from France conducted research and found that it is more expedient to use a Teflon surface for ironing synthetic and delicate fabrics at a low temperature. And for high temperatures and dense materials, cermets are more suitable.
- If you often iron garments, then it is better to choose an elongated model. For wide canvases — bed linen, bedspreads, curtains, it is much more efficient to use irons with a wide sole.
- Consider the weight of the iron, it should be comfortable for you. Usually users prefer one and a half to two kilogram models.
- The length of the power cord matters a lot. Its length should be no more than two meters. The ball mount allows the wire to rotate 360 degrees without getting tangled.
- The “stop-drop” or “anti-drop” system prevents water from flowing through the work surface and leaving stains on clothes.