The Hoover Steamjet Handy allows you to adapt your steaming experience through regulating the amount of water in its tank and the choice of extension nozzle (deep cleaning or refresh). Yet, even the Dry Steam mode can feel a little wet for certain tasks. The Wet Steam mode, while often highly efficient at ridding grime and grease, requires a fair bit of drying up. This cleaner can be a little awkward to fill, but it can deliver powerful blasts of steam and comes with a good range of attachments at an affordable price.
- Great range of accessories
- Two steam modes
- Powerful steaming
- A bit heavy
- Awkward to fill
- Distilled water recommended
- Review Price: £49.99
- Handheld steam cleaner
- 236 x 258 x 125mm, 1.74kg
- Deep cleaning and refresh extension nozzles, hose, large tool with squeegee attachment, refresh brush and microfibre cover, small round brush, metal brush, curved nozzle, crevice brush, scraper tool and filling jug
- 0.37-litre water tank
- 4-bar steam pressure
The Steamjet Handy is Hoover’s follow-up to the small-but-mighty Steam Express handheld cleaner. The new model still packs the same pressure (in Wet Steam mode), but also has a less intense “refresh” setting, described as Dry Steam mode.
In addition, the Steamjet Handy offers a more generous 5m cable and a specific refresh tool that resembles a clothes brush.
Hoover Steamjet Handy design and features – A tad heavier than its predecessor, but two steam modes are a definite plus
- Simple, muted colours – but a steam cleaner isn’t designed for showing off
- A good range of accessories, although the filling jug is flimsy
- Two steam settings is handy, but it complicates filling the water tank
In its overall kettle-like shape, the Steamjet Handy is similar to the Steam Express. But the gleaming white and bright red of the Steam Express have been replaced with more muted tones, with the Steamjet Handy appearing to focus on function over form (while looking a bit like something that may have been produced as a prototype).
The new model is also a little heavier, but you’re less likely to notice it if you’re using the hose. The generous range of attachments includes two extension nozzles through which steam is extracted from the cleaner, instead of the usual one. The deep-cleaning nozzle is great for heavily soiled areas. Meanwhile, the refresh nozzle delivers less powerful but sustained steaming and is suitable for more delicate surfaces. These nozzles can be attached to the hose or straight onto the appliance.
The rest of the accessories can be fitted onto one of the extension nozzles. The crevice brush and the curved nozzle are ideal for hard-to-reach areas, while the scraper tool, small round brush and metal brush can assist with stubborn stains. The large tool can be fitted with a squeegee attachment for cleaning windows or mirrors, a textile pad for soft furnishings, and a refresh brush for use on garments and textiles.
The water tank is filled from the opening at the top of the appliance. A small filling jug is provided for precision, but it proves tricky to hold, especially since the necessary markings on it are very close to the brim, leading to inevitable spillages.
One of two steam modes – Dry Steam and Wet Steam – is activated depending on the level of water in the tank. To start with, 200ml of water is recommended for the Dry Steam mode, while the Wet Steam mode requires 370ml. This system operates on the basis of having two separate compartments inside the tank. After pouring in about 200ml, the tank will appear full. The steam-release trigger needs to be held down to continue filling the remainder of the tank. The cleaner will now have extra water to draw on to make the steam wetter.
The steam-release trigger has a safety toggle that can stop the trigger from being depressed. Unlike with some cylinder steam cleaners, the toggle here can’t be used to lock the trigger in a steaming position, meaning it needs to be held down manually to continue emitting steam. Your thumb might get tired, but the water tank here is much too small for prolonged steaming anyway.
Hoover Steamjet Handy performance – Powerful steaming in Wet Steam mode, but also packs a punch in the Dry Steam mode
- The deep-cleaning nozzle in the Wet Steam mode gets results quickly, but also leaves some drying up to do
- The Dry Steam mode with the refresh nozzle is perfect for everyday cleaning tasks
- The Dry Steam mode can still be pretty wet – particularly for textile surfaces
I started testing the Steamjet Handy by filling the tank all the way up for the Wet Steam mode and fitting it with the hose, the deep-cleaning nozzle and the crevice brush. The cleaner took about 3mins 30secs to heat up, indicated by the red light near its bottom turning green. Using it to scrub a bit of my kitchen grouting made an instantaneous difference, restoring the dark grey grouting to its former whiteness. There was a bit of dirt-flecked water to dry up, so keep a cloth handy when using this mode.
Next, I changed the crevice brush for the scraper tool to clean my ceramic hob. Some grime was easily dislodged, while the oily stains required some back and forth. Again, a cloth was useful for drying up afterwards.
Removing the hose and fitting the deep-cleaning nozzle with the small round brush attached straight to the appliance, I set to work on the exceedingly greasy oven door. I made quick progress with the cleaner managed, removing the burnt-in oil residue with efficiency, but the cleaner emitted a lot of water that ran straight to the floor. I needed an entire cloth to soak this up.
I then switched to the metal brush and cleaned burnt oil from a grille. The cleaner delivered impressive results, but some vigour was also needed here and my arm got quite tired from holding the cleaner.
To test the detail tool, I chose the area around my kitchen tap. This tool helped me remove grime and some limescale, but some white marks remained. I switched to the small round brush, and after having a go at a particular spot, only very faint white marks could be detected. But each bit of limescale needed to be rubbed with purpose.
Armed with the squeegee attachment, I next turned the steamer’s attention to a large bathroom mirror. The hose proved handy here for overhead use as the cleaner itself is best held at a 45-degree angle. While soap scum and superficial limescale were removed, some more stubborn limescale remained, likely requiring something stronger, such as a spray of vinegar.
I then switched to cleaning in the Dry Steam mode. Starting with a cool cleaner, it took about 2mins 45secs to heat up 200ml of water in the tank. First I attached the hose, refresh nozzle and crevice brush to test the difference in power. Using the steamer on another patch of my kitchen grouting, it cleaned pretty quickly, with less water residue than in the Wet Steam mode and deep-cleaning nozzle combination.
Next, I tried cleaning some stains from my sofa. I used the large tool with the microfibre cover to address a particular stain. This wasn’t removed, but the area where I’d used the tool was visibly lighter.
I then switched to the large tool and refresh brush combination for a larger area. Despite being in the Dry Steam mode, quite a bit of water was still dribbling onto my sofa, resulting in a partially soaked surface that turned quite streaky when it dried.
I also tried the large tool with the microfibre cover on the upright back of an upholstered dining chair, where it removed the small stains efficiently. Given the same task, the large tool with the refresh brush didn’t prove as successful. While it also removed the small stains, it left behind some streaks.
Hoover Steamjet Handy conclusion
With its two modes and wide range of accessories, the Hoover Steamjet Handy offers a lot of cleaning power for such a small and well-priced tool. For smaller around-the-home jobs it’s a great buy, although it can be a touch fiddly to use. If you need more cleaning power, then a larger steam cleaner could be for you.