Best steam generator irons for sewing – Please advise

Post 78

I’ve been a really good girl and managed to make some savings in the past few months, must be all those clothes I’m not buying – oh wait, I spent that on fabric already *blushes in embarrassment*. Anyway, last month I was pressing a silk blouse and my otherwise fairly ok iron, a Tefal, spat out hot water like the devil and left a fab imprint of watermarks in the shape of iron holes. So this made me think I should maybe look for a new iron, or, even better, a steam generator iron, otherwise know as a pressure (or boiler) iron.

I initiated the research, as you do, and came off more confused than I started. I mean, these things are beasts, with massive boiler tanks, plus we are talking some completely different things to look for, like grams/minute (that’s steam), bars (for boiler pressure) etc. Also, all the reviews talk about everyday ironing, and how great and easy it is to get through piles and piles of laundry in half the time. This is of course great, but I want to know how the beast performs in sewing situations, which are effectively short bursts of steam in specific places, so quite pinpointed, but also needs to handle sticking on interface etc. Also, they must absolutely not leak, they must heat up quickly, ideally have an auto-off function and a decalc, but that’s a nice to have.

I have used a few industrial ones and I loved them, but they are both out of my budget (£300 and over) and they are much bulkier than I have space for. Also, they tend to be the type that you have to wait to get pressurised and you can’t open to top up until they cool down. My budget is a max on £150, and ideally, would be good for it to be a brand that has good UK customer service

However, I love the look of industrial ones, with the cork handle and I feel a bit put off by the modern looking ones that look effectively like a regular iron. I know, idiosyncrasies… I was looking at this one. It’s a brand called Polti, apparently a very well known Italian brand (made in Europe is also appealing).



As with most sewing related dilemmas, I’m turning to the sewosphere for advice. Have you got a pressure steam iron? Are you happy with it? If not, why not? Any brands you can recommend more than others? Any other things I need to watch out for? Have you owned a Polti? Would you recommend it

Thank you loads!!

Alex xxx



  1. I have an industrial I bought here in chile and it’s great in many ways. It weighs a kilo so it does most of the work for me. It has a 3 litre gravity feed tank. I’ve also had a domestic steam generator that I bought in Lidl for £50. That lasted until I moved here and the hard water killed it. So just in case, whatever type you go for, use distilled water!
    My domestic one was great, I used to do some tailoring and it handled the wool really well. I don’t think you need an industrial one. I just got mine because it was cheaper here.


    1. Thanks for your advice Alison. I have heard a lot of people talk about using distilled water, so I will be sure to do that when I get the new one, whatever that end up being.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for commenting, Sue! I had not heard of this brand before, so just looked them up. They look great, but a bit our of my price range, I’m afraid. I’ll have a look to see if there are any second hand out of interest.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Dear Alex, I wish you Good Luck because it seams more a matter of luck to find a good iron even when it’s made by a famous brand…. I bought from John Lewis a “Philips PerfectCare Silence Steam Generator Iron” and had to return it because was leaking water… I have now a Rowenta DW9230 Steamforce Steam Iron and happily use it for sewing: the narrow tip of iron is useful for narrow seams and has a good distribution of steam. And it was less than half the price of Philips…. all it seams a matter of luck….


    1. I’m surprised how many people have said that. I was quite lucky so far, didn’t have any bad experiences. My current one, although I’m looking to replace it, it’s perfectly fine, just looking for a bit more ‘umph’…


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