Doctor's Review: Medicine on the Move

January 17, 2022
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Letting off steam

There are two kinds of people in this world: those who like to iron and those who hate it. A steam generating iron just might reconcile the two.

A conventional steam iron stores water in the body. Newer models now come equipped with special buttons that release a substantial blast of steam — enough of a blast, in fact, that you can use the feature to "press" many things by simply hanging them up and steaming out the wrinkles.

If your iron is more than five years old you should consider trading up. New models are widely available priced between $40 and $60.

A steam generating iron, on the other hand, takes ironing to a higher level A separate tank is used to produce much more steam under much greater pressure. The results are significantly more efficient. Indeed, many users say steam generators cut ironing time in half and leave shirts and sheets, dresses and pants virtually creaseless — no water or starch sprays necessary. Some users are so enamored with the devices that they go through the house looking for more things to iron.

The most popular brands are made by DeLonghi and Rowenta. Users who have tried both rank the DeLonghi higher, though heavy-duty users would like to see larger holding tanks. They like the DeLonghi's retro-look and its cool cork handle and ranked it as more reliable. Other pluses, it uses regular tap water and it's $50 less expensive. That doesn't mean either brand is without fault. The most common complaint is that after four of five years, the heating element give out. Still, both units come with three-year warranties.

The DeLonghi is available in Canada at for $199.95, free shipping. offers the Rowenta Steam Master at $249.99.

This article was accurate when it was published. Please confirm rates and details directly with the companies in question.


Showing 1 comments

  1. On April 10, 2011, Etela said:
    David Elkin correctly identified the groups of people who liked ironing or hated it. He did not offer his thoughts as to why this differences exist. I can say for myself, that when I feel really stressed out, I will switch my rotary ironer or a hand held iron on and iron my bed linens or shirts wrinkle free. The results are very pleasing.

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