Steam irons under $50 – what to expect?
When buying a budget product, there’s always a worry that you’ll be getting something that isn’t up to your standards. It makes it even more important to look carefully at reviews and choose a model that is highly rated and has all the features you want.
The biggest difference between affordable irons and pricier options is usually the base, which works as a large water tank. This allows you to go a lot longer before refills. Also, the expensive models tend to be on the higher end of the power scale.
While that is true, you can still find fantastic irons under $50. The models we’ve looked at don’t lack power, functionality, or steam production. You shouldn’t be worried about not getting value for money as all the irons here are fantastic and produce excellent results.
How to pick the best steam iron under $50?
As with any product, you need to assess your own needs. Do you need vertical steam? Is auto shut-off important? How long do you iron for? These are all types of questions that can ultimately affect your buying decision. As we go through this buying guide, it’s a good idea to make a note of features and see how it relates to you. By the end, you should build up a clear picture of exactly what you need.
What are the downsides to low power? The iron won’t heat up as quickly, and also the steam won’t be quite as powerful. The Panasonic NI-E660SR Dry and Steam Iron only have 1200W of power but compensates for this very well with its exceptional functionality and still produces great results.
You can still get a high level of power with an iron under $50, and we see this with the 1800W of the BEAUTURAL 1800-Watt Steam Iron. This has the equivalent power of many more expensive models and can generate great heat for effective ironing.
The water tank is perhaps the biggest advantage of high-end steam irons. This, however, only really becomes a big advantage for those who are ironing for long periods. For example, iron such as the BLACK+DECKER Digital Advantage Professional Steam Iron D2530 is able to hold 12oz, which can still provide a lot of steam.
Along with capacity, it’s also worth considering how easy it is to fill up the water reservoir. A large inlet makes it very easy, and you can fill up directly from the tap, whereas smaller ones will work best with a funnel.
It’s important to get the steam functionality that you want. Most will have various settings available that are suitable for different fabric types. This includes having a temperature adjustment that gives you the versatility you need.
There are different types of steam output too. The T-fal Ultraglide Iron is fantastic at providing both burst steam and also vertical steam. This allows you to use it in a wide range of different settings and makes it easy to use.
Soleplates are generally made from either ceramic or stainless steel. Ceramic is popular as it allows you to iron at a higher temperature without burning clothes. It’s also better at preventing statics.
Stainless steel is more durable as ceramic can feel off after a while. It’s also easy to clean but can’t be used at high as high temperatures.
Both of them are excellent conductors and distribute heat evenly, and both of them glide very well across any surface.
Dimensions and weight
A lot of people don’t care too much about dimensions as most irons are roughly the same size. If you want a little more portability, look for one that is a little more compact.
Weight is an interesting specification with irons as most people like an iron that is light enough to be easy to hold but heavy enough to press down firmly on your fabrics. We thought that the Eureka Razor Powerful Steam Iron is one that finds a great balance at 2.65lbs.
Ease of use
Your iron has to be easy to use, and we made sure that all models we looked at here are able to pass that test.
One thing to look out for is the position of the controls, as they should be easy to reach and adjust while you’re using the steam iron.
The handle also plays an important role, and most of them are contoured to feel comfortable and secure in your hand. The Eureka Razor Powerful Steam Iron takes that a step further with a rubberized handle that gives you a very secure grip.
The most common safety feature that we see here is the auto shut off, as shown on the BLACK+DECKER Digital Advantage Professional Steam Iron D2530. This will cut the power after a specified amount of time, which is great for those who worry about whether or not they’ve left it on.
Stability can also be an important issue as you want to place your iron down without fear of it falling over. The Shark STEAM PRO Iron excels in this respect and is ideal for those who can be a little clumsy.
Do you get annoyed by a short cord? Or perhaps you don’t like having a loose cord after you use it? If so, there are solutions out there. The BLACK+DECKER Vitessa Iron ICR2020 is an example of iron with a retractable cord to make your life easier.
If you wanted to have a long cord, the T-fal Ultraglide Iron 1700W would be a great option, and this can give you a little more flexibility in terms of where you can use it.
It’s always good to have a warranty, and all the irons here at least have a 1-year option. The Sunbeam Steammaster Steam Iron has an excellent 3-year warranty that will give you plenty of confidence in its build quality.
The BEAUTURAL 1800-Watt Steam Iron is a little less at 2 years, but it also comes with a 90-day return period, which is perfect if you’re not immediately happy. Always have a look at what protection you have.