Steam cleaning is the act of using evaporated and heated water to clean a surface. Steam has to benefit that it interacts with oils and grease without the need for an emusifier. This means it can clean dirt and grease without soap. Which leaves less residue. Steam cleaning can be used on the outside of a car as well as on the interior.
Benefits from steam cleaning
Steam cleaning has several benefits, compared to mainstream cleaning.
- No soap residue
- Since the steam will evaporated, less liquid to dry or wipe off
- Oil and grease interaction without the need for an emulsifier
- Pressure can be used to get into small corners
Cleaning with steam also has several disadvantages over mainstream cleaning.
- Without soap, there is also less or none lubrication will (re)moving the contamination
- Steam cleaning requires a machine that uses electricity
- The nozzle can be very hot
- Since the steam will evaporate, there is no carrier for the dirt and grease
- Since there is no rinsing needed, the water won’t remove any dust in small corners that rinsing would just flush away
Why use steam cleaning
Just like many other cleaning techniques, steam cleaning can be usefull for certain jobs. Knowing when to use what technique can make steam cleaning safe, but using it in the wrong situation could create more surface imperfections than you want to. Steam cleaning shouldn’t be done on a very dirty surface, because it offers no lubrication or carrier. So there is nothing to prevent it from scratching and rubbing the surface.
Steam cleaning can be done on a fairly clean surface, or to wipe off polish residue before applying wax. It would be unsuitable to use before applying a sealant, since the steam won’t the same effect as a panel wipe.
Steam cleaning can also be used on interior, the steam will help to liquify grease and oils in fabric, making it easier to wipe them off. Since the steam has very hot, it will also have a detremental effect on fungus and other bacteria. It won’t kill all, but it will help to sanitize the fabric, more then most soaps or cleaning agents will.