I've spent a lot of money on irons as well. I've used the £5 iron from Asda, and right now, I'm using a steam Phillips iron (well I was). Most of the water that comes out of the tap in the UK is quite hard, which means that any appliance that uses water (washing machines, kettles and steam irons) have a major problem, scale. My last two irons have been damaged by scale, so now, I only use Comfort Ironing water, which costs about £1 a pop, and go through about 4 bottles a month. And to tackle creases, I use spray starch, again, I use about 4 cans a month (£1.29 a pop)
So when Bzzagent invited me to try out the Phillips GC7220 Pressuried Steam Generator, I was pleasantly surprised. This is something I was definitely interested in, and I jumped at the chance to participate in the campaign.
This kit boasted that it could cut your ironing time in half, a claim I was eager to find out for myself. But what caught my eye first was the fact that with this iron, scale was not going to be a problem. The scale would never get to the iron, or in the pipes, it would stay in the tank. And if you rinse the tank every 10 uses, you should be fine. Considering that scale has cost me 2 irons already, this kit was probably worth the £100 it goes for at Argos.
After receiving it, the first time I used it was while getting ready for a wedding. I pulled out my wife's silk top, trousers and my shirt.
With the new iron, I ironed everything in record time, the creases were simply no match for the pressurized steam. I was pleasantly surprised at how well it went, but I knew that the real test would be when I did my weekly ironing.
And so on Sunday, I got my kit ready, put the TV on, and started ironing. My weekly ironing usually takes 3-4 hours. Before you say "How slow are you??" (my sister in law says that all the time), let me say that, yes, I take my time. And because I'm watching TV, I take even longer.
Anyway, I started my ironing at around 8pm or so. And after I was done, I took the clothes into the bedroom to put in the wardrobe, my wife was shocked. "HAVE YOU FINISHED ALREADY?". I looked at the time, and it was 10pm. I'd already put the ironing board and iron away, and taken all the clothes upstairs. Less than 2 hours. This was a record, no doubt about it. So does the steam generator iron any faster than a regular iron? The answer is a resounding YES.
So let's look at the good points and the bad points, in order to give a balanced view.
- As described above, ironing time is greatly reduced. I did not believe it when I was told, but using the iron has removed all doubt, and I am still stunned at how well it works.
- As described above scale is no longer an issue, which will save me money on ironing water.
- Stubborn creases are no match for this beast, so I don't need to spend money on Spray Starch any more.
- If you use an ironing board like me, you can't put the tank on it. The tank is quite heavy, so don't even think about it. You'll need to get a stool or small table next to you.
- The steam is pumped to the iron, and this process can be quite noisy at times. I usually watch TV while I iron, so it meant I had to put up the volume on the TV, which meant there was A LOT of noise in the room.
- Unlike conventional steam irons, which put out steam intermittently, with this, you need to hit a button whenever you need steam. You can lock this button down for a continuous burst, but again, this adds to the noise in the room.
All in all, it's a fantastic piece of kit, and I am really glad I've got one.
If anyone wants to buy one, you can get them in Tesco (I haven't seen it in my local Tesco), Argos(£99.99), Currys(£99.99) and amazon.co.uk(£99.95). (Prices are current as of 11th of October)
You might think it's pricey for an iron, but if like me, you need to replace your iron regularly because of scale, this will pay for 3 regular irons (if you use it for the full 2 years Phillips guarantees it for). Plus, if like me you buy ironing water and starch, the money you save on that as well means that this iron pays for itself.