God knows that our cars suffer dirt from every which way. Pet fur? Check. Muddy shoes? Check. Random hitchhikers? Check. Messy kids? Double check.
So if you care about your car and want to reduce the wear-and-tear, you’ve already decided that you should invest in a handy little steam cleaner. But with so many options on the market, how can you decide which one is the best choice for you and your car?
Easy – read over our reviews of the best steam cleaners on the market, where you can find the best products that are affordable, powerful, and versatile, allowing you to use them for spaces beyond your car (such as your motorcycle, boat, or home).
Plus, each of our recommendations can help you clean and sanitize your car without the use of cleaning chemicals. If you’ve got kids or pets, or are trying to go green, that’s all the more reason to love our picks!
Make sure to read our buying guide at the end of this article, where we share essential buying advice that will help you choose the best steam cleaner for your unique needs and preferences.
1. Best for Most People: McCulloch MC1275 Heavy-Duty Cleaner
The McCulloch easy to use, powerful, and comes with additional accessories!
The McCulloch MC1275 Heavy-Duty Cleaner is the best steam cleaner for most people, as it’s easy to use, powerful, and comes with additional accessories that allow for versatile cleaning applications.
If you’re looking for a chemical-free way to clean and detail your car, motorcycle, truck, or boat, you’re sure to love the McCulloch.
The McCulloch Heavy-Duty Cleaner is quite easy to use. The carrying handle on the body of the cleaner makes it easy to transport, and at the same time, the ergonomic mop head can easily be maneuvered to reach deep under the car seats. Plus, the Heavy-Duty cleaner features a 15.7-foot power cord for improved mobility.
This model also features a high cleaning capacity. Its 48-ounce water tank will provide you with enough steam for 45 minutes of uninterrupted work.
The user-friendly design also comes with a “steam-ready” light which will let you know when the unit is ready to start steam-cleaning.
The McCulloch Heavy-Duty Cleaner comes with 18 versatile accessories, which will allow you to use this cleaner for a variety of surfaces!
This steam cleaner is also easy to store. The compact size (8” x 5.2” x 10.7”) will allow you to stow it away in a cramped closet.
This model also offers great performance. The water in the tank heats up in under 8 minutes, so almost as soon as you plug it in, you’ll be ready to go!
The high heat of the steam will allow you to use the steam cleaner for a germ-free car without using cleaning chemicals. Additionally, you can adjust the steam release for different surfaces and needs.
The McCulloch Heavy-Duty Cleaner comes with 18 versatile accessories, which will allow you to use this cleaner for a variety of surfaces (and purposes!) in addition to your car.
The accessories include a floor mop and microfiber mop pads, so that you can clean the hard floors in your home. It also includes a window squeegee, for your car or home windows.
The featured extension wands and triangle brush are perfect for those hard-to-reach places, and the various scrub brushes will help you get rid of any stubborn grease, grout, and grime.
These features expand the McCulloch’s utility beyond the car – including boats and motorcycles, tile, granite, laminate, and sealed wood floors, as well as various kitchen appliances.
This durable model comes with a 2-year limited warranty, which will give you enough time to ensure that everything works properly.
Some of the parts on this steam cleaner seem to be made of cheap plastic, which can deteriorate and break easily after several months of use.
Another issue some customers have found is that the cleaner is not as powerful as they had expected, but is still a decent choice for sanitizing.
Lastly, the McCulloch can run a bit loud.
2. Best Value For Money: Steamfast SF-370WH Multi-Purpose Steam Cleaner
The Steamfast offers excellent performance for a good price.
For less than $110, the Steamfast Multi-Purpose Steam Cleaner comes with high-powered, efficient performance and handy accessories that will allow you to use it for multiple purposes (as the name justly indicates!).
You can use this compact, user-friendly model not only for your car and your home, but also for windows and bathroom tile walls. If you want a chemical-free way to tackle the toughest cleaning jobs, you’ll love the Steamfast.
For the price, the Steamfast offers excellent performance. The heat can go over 200 degrees Fahrenheit, which will ensure thorough sanitization without the use of cleaning chemicals.
Like the McCullogh, the Steamfast takes only 8 minutes to heat up the water, so that you can begin cleaning almost as soon as you plug the machine in.
The Steamfast is also quite user-friendly. The 45-ounce water tank provides 45 minutes of continuous steam, so that you can complete most cleaning tasks without taking breaks to refill the tank.
Plus, you can activate or deactivate the steam with the press of a button. We especially love the “lock” function on the button, which provides continuous steam release.
The 45-ounce water tank provides 45 minutes of continuous steam.
The 15 versatile accessories that are included with this product really add value for your money, as they will allow you to clean multiple surfaces and hard-to-reach places using the Steamfast.
Firstly, you can use this cleaner with or without the mop head, depending on your cleaning needs.
The 2 nylon utility brushes, brass utility brush, and scrub tool will allow you to get rid of grout and grime with ease. The squeegee can be used to clean windows.
The corner tool, which comes with an additional scrub pad and a sponge pad, will allow you to thoroughly clean the corners of your bathroom and your car.
The 2 extension wands will give you the necessary length to clean the hardest-to-reach spaces in your car.
Plus, the purchase includes 2 microfiber pads, which will clean sealed floor surfaces without causing damage from scratching.
The Steamfast is easy to use and easy to store. It comes with a 15.4” power cord, which increases mobility in cleaning. The steam cleaner weighs only 2.6 lbs, which makes transportation easy.
The compact size of 8.25″ x 5.5″ x 10.5″ will allow you to stow away the Steamfast in any small space, such as the trunk of your car or the space beneath your kitchen counter.
The durable, low wear-and-tear build of the Steamfast is backed by a 1-year limited warranty.
Some customers have complained that while the Steamfast performs quite well, some of the parts (the hose, the button) are made of cheap plastic.
Another downside of the Steamfast is that after the tank runs out of water, you have to wait about an hour to refill it and use it again, since the unit needs to cool down first.
3. Best On A Budget: PurSteam Handheld Steam Cleaner
Our favorite budget-friendly option is the PurSteam Handheld Steam Cleaner, as it’s a powerful and easy-to-use option.
The PurSteam is a handy, lightweight choice for cleaning your car, and the included accessories will allow you to clean the hard-to-reach areas of your home, too!
This handheld steam cleaner is the lightest and most compact option on our list. It weighs about 2 pounds, which will allow you to clean with exceptional ease and mobility.
Its size is about 8” cubed, which will allow you to not only store the PurSteam just about anywhere, but also to maneuver it to reach the most cramped corners of your car and home.
The 10-foot power cord makes this model a convenient choice for both indoor and outdoor use.
The PurSteam weighs about 2 pounds, so that you won’t feel any strain after cleaning!
Don’t let the size fool you, because the PurSteam offers excellent performance. If the water tank is full (250 ml), the water heats up within 3-4 minutes after the unit is plugged in.
The hot steam can eliminate germs, mold, grime, grease, stubborn dried stains, and even bed bugs without the use of harsh chemicals.
The PurSteam comes with a versatility that allows you to use it for purposes beyond detailing your car, such as cleaning any room in the home.
You can use the PurSteam for multiple floor types, such as ceramic tile, granite, waterproof wood, laminate tiles, and even carpets, as well as appliances, such as your barbecue, and furniture, like your bed or sofa!
The 9-piece accessory set that comes with this product includes attachments for more heavy-duty, targeted cleaning, as well as extensions for those hard-to-reach corners.
Last but not least, PurSteam has one of the best customer support teams on the market!
The PurSteam cleaner does lack the capacity for more heavy-duty jobs. Also, as the water tank is smaller than our other recommendations, it’s not a great choice for longer cleaning jobs.
There have been several reports of defective PurSteam cleaners leaking or not producing enough steam.
Luckily, in these cases, the company has kindly contacted the customers and either replaced their product with a new one that works properly or offered the customers a full refund and an apology!
Choosing the Best Steam Cleaner for Your Car
A steam cleaner is a great, green way to keep your car clean (1). However, you may still be a bit unsure about which one of these options is the best choice for your car and home.
Not to worry! Just read on to our buying guide to discover what factors you should keep in mind when choosing your new steam cleaner.
All of our recommendations offer a great price-quality ratio. Still, some options are more affordable than others.
Even if you do have the money, a cheaper option may be enough for the job.
Even if you aren’t constricted by your budget, think over what you need in a steam cleaner for your car, and whether you’d also use it for your home, because even if you do have the money, a cheaper option may be enough for the job.
Most steam cleaners come with a warranty of at least one year, and as the price gets steeper, you may be able to find options with longer warranties of about 2-3 years. Make sure that the option you choose is covered for at least one year, as it’s usually enough time to ensure that everything works properly.
Size and Weight
Choosing a small and light steam cleaner will encourage you to regularly clean and maintain your car!
As you’re looking for a steam cleaner that you can use to clean your car, you want to make sure that you choose something compact, that can easily fit in your trunk or garage, and light, so that you can transport it without a hassle whenever you want to use it. Choosing a small and light steam cleaner will encourage you to regularly clean and maintain your car!
Water Tank Capacity
Although you may need the steam cleaner for quick cleaning jobs in your car, you still want to make sure that the water tank can accommodate enough water for at least a half-hour of uninterrupted work. The last thing you’d want is stopping to refill the tank every 10 minutes!
Our top recommendation for most people is the McCulloch MC1275 Heavy-Duty Cleaner, as it offers the most power, versatility, and durability for the price.
The McCulloch comes with 18 accessories, which will allow you to use this model to detail your car, motorcycle, or boat, as well as heavy-duty clean your home.
McCulloch’s 2-year warranty is the best warranty out of our recommendations, and the best warranty on the market in its price range. Still, the McCulloch is the priciest choice on this list.
A more affordable option that offers great value for your money is the Steamfast Multi-Purpose Steam Cleaner.
The lightweight build and long power cord of the Steamfast make it easy to transport and use on multiple locations (car and home).
The 15 attachments and high-temperature steam also make this model excellent for small to tough jobs on a number of surfaces.
If you’re looking for something that’s even more budget-friendly, go for the PurSteam! The PurSteam offers great features despite the low price.
For one, it’s the lightest portable option on our list, for another, it has the fastest heat-up rate out of any cleaner on the market (3-4 minutes), and plus, it comes with a 9-piece attachment set for targeted cleaning! Keep in mind, however, that it’s not the best option for heavy-duty cleaning as it’s not that powerful.
Hopefully, our reviews and buying guide for the best steam cleaners for your car were useful in your search for the best option for you. To get more information about each of our recommendations, follow the title links to learn their price, in-depth specifications, and customer reviews.
While we have you, you can also check out our reviews of the best steam cleaners on the market, to make an informed purchasing decision!