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Is steam cleaning the most eco-friendly and cost effective practice?


Steam cleaning is considered to be one of the most eco-friendly alternatives to cleaning practices.


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November 18, 2018
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Is steam cleaning the most eco-friendly and cost effective practice?

Steam cleaning is considered to be one of the most eco-friendly alternatives to cleaning practices. This process can be applied to disinfect or sanitise nearly all surfaces - including flooring, kitchen platforms - except for some delicate fabrics used in upholstery and curtains, reason being the basic characteristic of using only water to produce steam and clean.

What makes steam cleaning so important is its ability to dissolve and remove any type of dirt without the use of strong detergents. In fact, steam can also dissolve hard-to-remove substances like ground-in wax, glue and chewing gum. Likewise, through steam cleaning techniques polluting effects on the environment are avoided, leading to a safer place to work and stay. “This is the most efficient sanitising method wherein dust mites, pests, allergens are removed without the need of harmful chemicals, in respect of human healthcare,” says Gabriella Bianco, Communications and PR Manager, IP Cleaning Srl.

In addition, compared to traditional professional cleaning, it is more powerful, costefficient and ecological. Giovanni Andrea D'Agostino, Sales Director, Elsea, agrees, “The efficiency of steam cleaning is proved by simultaneous cleaning, renovation, decontamination and degreasing activities and by reduced manpower, water and detergent consumption. Moreover, it avoids the handling of potentially harmful substances by the operators and improves the air quality with the neutralisation of bad smells and the reduction of moulds and fungus. Besides, its ‘thermal shock’ effect guarantees a total disinfection and elimination of microorganisms.”

IPC has enriched their steam products range with four different high-performing steam generators, conceived for different field of application. From the smallest to the biggest, these can be provided with equipment specifically designed to perform and ease all steam cleaning activities. The range includes hoses, extension tubes, multi-purpose brushes of various forms (triangular or rectangular), brush polyester bristles, professional nozzles and steam lances. These accessories can be used for everyday cleaning operations and also to execute periodical treatments of the surfaces.

Continental Trading has recently introduced the STEAM BOX that has an automatic water refilling system with electromechanical water level control inside the boiler, pressure gauge, hour meter and a stainless steel body. “We have also introduced the CAR HYGIENE PLUS range equipped with full range of car cleaning and hygiene,” adds Adnan Naziri, Continental Trading.

Elsea’s product range includes various models designed for steam cleaning that includes the Steam Wave, Steam Plus and Steam Poseidon: each model has its own features and accessories kit. “In particular, the Steam Poseidon is the latest launch among the ELSEA steam generators with a more powerful suction of dust and liquids and with a strong and industrial structure,” says D'Ago stino.


On a commercial level, steam cleaning can be an effective solution with versatile cleaning pressures and high-temperature, significantly reducing both water consumption and waste disposal costs. D'Agostino says particular industries such as food, healthcare, mechanical, HORECA and car wash benefit greatly from using steam machines. IPC Group, too, believes in the appeal of steam cleaning in the food industry – processing, storing, transport and food retail – assures a safe environment since all types of allergens and dust mites are killed without any chemicals. “Steam is highly recommended for HORECA environments in particular for the cleaning of kitchens, common services, pools, fitness centers and finally guest rooms, during both daily maintenance and extraordinary cleaning activities,” comments Bianco.

Technological advancements

There have been a lot of technological advancements in the steam cleaning process. For instance all the steam cleaning machines produced by ELSEA work as dry steam cleaners. “This guarantees the top results in sanitising and degreasing the surfaces and spaces. Dry saturated steam is defined as steam, free from micro drops of water. Besides, ELSEA's most recent innovations in the steam cleaning sector include the automatic selection of dry/wet steam delivery and the design of a new ozone-sanitising treatment machine,” D'Agostino contributes. Furthermore, steam generation and diffusion are those elements recently optimised in IPC’s steam products range. With the growing concern towards conserving water and the environment steam cleaning can be an effective alternative to cleaning practices.

Top Applications of Steam Cleaning

Food industry

An important challenge in the food industry nowadays is the contamination that could be caused by the decomposition of the food ingredients and other deposits hidden in the edges and between the wall junctions inside the food production machines and in the upper parts of the facilities. By using steam cleaning, all kinds of audit requirements according to the local food industry laws are easy to meet.

Dry steam cleaning is perfect to meet the highest local hygiene standards of the food industry in each country, including the most spread Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP). Dry steam is used for the work surface areas, kitchen extractor hoods, ventilation ducts, machinery and equipment used to cook or serve the food, including scales, measuring instruments, metal grills etc.

Healthcare industry

Steam machines are the perfect fit for the healthcare industry, with a focus on the sanitisation and the prevention of infectious diseases. Before it was put in practice by changing the detergents often in order to fight the bacteria that are neutralised by the chemical agents. In fact, all germs are immunised by steam at 160°. It is widely used in hospitals and clinics, operating rooms and other environments where the instruments must be kept sterile including ambulances and veterinary assistance. More precisely, the use of dry steam cleaning is indicated, but not limited to the sanitization of pillows and blankets, mattresses and wheelchairs, waiting rooms and corridors.


Hotels, restaurants and cafes, independent on their dimensions, have very high standards of cleaning and sanitary needs, given to the frequent guests' change and their high expectations of this criteria. Also, here steam cleaning is the right solution to clean and sanitise floors, walls, work surfaces and bathrooms, as well as to remove stains, including gums from carpets, fabrics, furniture and mattresses.

The evident advantages of steam cleaning in the hospitality industry are the reduced use of chemical detergents, the rapidity and the improvement of the air quality. Besides, it is very versatile, since it can be used for tile and majolica surfaces, parquet and listels, polishing chromatic surfaces and tubes, cleaning lifts and ventilation ducts and so on.

Car Wash

Steam cleaning can be performed on vehicles of all types and sizes, even those not suitable for the standard car washes. Since, the steam is also much more delicate compared to the water jet or brush cleaning, it is suitable to clean vintage cars, luxury limousines, motorcycles, bicycles and scooters without fear of damaging their paint jobs, etc. In any case, steam is perfect to clean and sanitize vehicles’ glass, dashboards, mechanical, electrical and electronic parts. Being very efficient, any kind of stain on the seats and carpets are quickly eliminated. If cleaned by steam, the internal upholstery dries very fast, so the car can be immediately delivered to the client.

Source: ELSEA