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My Steam Cleaner Doesn’t Work

We all want to keep our homes clean and free of pests. With steam technology constantly improving a steam cleaner is a very effective solution that works well in removing grime, dirt, germs and food stains from a variety of surfaces and items.

If you have gone to use your cleaner and found it dead it may have ruined your plans of giving your home a good clean. However, with a few simple checks, we can help you identify the most probable cause for this breakdown.

Cause 1

Heating Element

A common cause to your cleaner not producing steam can be a failed heating element. As the heater is used to heat up the water, if that has ruptured or burnt out your steam cleaner will not produce any steam. 

With the water tank filled and switched on the steamer should sound like a boiling kettle. If this is not the case, you will need to test for continuity using a multimeter.

Safety First! Please make sure that you have disconnected the appliance from the mains before beginning any repair.

  • Identify the two wires connecting the element to the boiling tank.
  • Using a multimeter, (click here for instruction on how to use a multimeter) test the element connections for continuity - a functioning element will typically measure between 50 and 20 ohms in resistance.
  • Significantly higher will indicate the element is faulty and will need replacing. 

To replace the element you will likely require the complete boiler assembly, which you can find in our range of steam cleaner spares here.

Cause 2


A steam cleaner without steam is pretty much a dysfunctional piece of plastic. If - after checking the element you see no signs of damage or fault, then the next reason that could be causing the halt is limescale.

If you hear the steam cleaner making sounds like a kettle boiling, but not delivering steam when used, it may be blocked due to a build-up of limescale from hard water.

Safety First! Please make sure that you have disconnected the appliance from the mains before beginning any repair.

  • Flush out the tank with clean hot water before refilling with descaling liquid, diluted as per the cleaner instruction.
  • Allow the cleaner to work for 10-20 minutes or as directed before emptying and reconnecting.
  • The descaling process may take longer if the valve or pipes are blocked, so patience is the virtue here.

Fancy giving your steam cleaner a thorough clean? Take a look through our online catalogue for our full range of cleaning products.

Hopefully, with these easy troubleshooting steps, you have been able to establish why your steam cleaner is calling quits and get your appliance doing what it’s destined for.