The Beldray 5-in-1 steam mop seems to offer some promising features and great cleaning performance in the mid-range steam cleaning market. Which is good considering the fierce competition offered by some of it’s close competitors such as Thane and Vax. But even some units offered by these brands cannot compete with this Beldray steam mop on features vs price.
Beldray Steam Mop 5-in-1 – Overview
Making sure your steam cleaner heats quickly is a must, especially if you want to it for general day-to-day cleaning. Waiting a few minutes between refilling the tank or even to get started can be frustrating. Fortunately Beldray have not disappointed here, and whilst the water tank can hold a relatively average 300ml of water, it takes only 20-25 seconds to heat up and gives a very respectable maximum of 20 minutes continuous steam before refilling is required.
The power cord is a little on the short side (when using it as a mop) – at around 3 meters in length. Ideally 5 meters and above would be a bit more convenient to work with. So if you’re planning on cleaning floors in much larger than average rooms an extension lead is a must. However, when using it as a hand held cleaner 3 meters is more than adequate.
It does, however, combine the best of both worlds, housing a steam mop and steam cleaner in one compact and cost effective unit. Making it ideal for getting general cleaning chores around the home complete a lot quicker. Let’s start by taking a look inside the box…
Beldray Steam Mop – Inside The Box:
Anyone familiar with steam mops/cleaners will know they often arrive with a large assortment of attachments designed to increase the units usefulness and tackle virtually any surface. The 5-in-1 keeps to this precedent and arrives with a good compliment right out of the box, allowing you to clean anything from flooring, tiles and stuck on food through to upholstery, windows and carpets.
The attachments range from brushes and nozzles to cleaning pads and mops heads. But, the one that particularly caught our attention, was the refilling jug – bear with us here! Some steam devices can be prone to clogging with limescale which hinders their performance and in some cases can lead to malfunctioning (this is sometimes a complaint with the h20 mop by Thane), particularly in hard-water areas. To combat this the supplied refilling jug incorporates a calcium filter to remove calcium impurities from the water that would typically lead to lime-scale build up and blockages. This should mean a longer lifespan of the unit and fewer performance problems.
The mop arrives in several pieces and does require some assembly before use. This however, is nothing more complicated than pressing together a total of 4 parts. The main handle and shaft arrive as 2 parts which lock into the main body using a simple ‘push and click’ mechanism. The mop body then locks onto the precision mop head using the same system.
Basic controls & Using It as an Upright Cleaner
There is no power button on this mop and it begins to heat automatically the moment it is plugged in. Illumination lights at the sides of the water tank will cause it to emit a futuristic looking red glow as the unit heats. When the mop has heated fully (this takes 20-25 seconds as mentioned above) the lights will change to blue – a clear indicator it is ready to produce steam.
There are two ways you can fill the water tank on this mop. The first method is directly in the device. A screw cap on the water tank provides access and using the supplied jug a maximum of 350ml of water can be placed inside. It can sometimes take a few minutes for the water to filter through and show at the ‘full 350ml’ mark – so avoid the temptation to over fill it if you can’t see the water straight away. The second method is virtually identical to the first, however you can remove the tank from the device before filling it. We prefer this approach because of it’s convenience – the tank can be set down on worktop rather than struggling to balance/hold the mop level whilst you fill it. Once all of the water has been used the tank will begin to glow red and flash.
The mop pad (there are 2 supplied with unit) can be attached directly to the base of the mop head using a velco-esque system common to most steam mops. There is also a convenient ‘pull-tab’ which protrudes from the mop pad itself. This will allow you to use your foot to pin the tab to floor and life the mop upwards, thereby removing the mop head without risking burning your fingers!
Pressing a button on the top front of the mop will then cause the mop to emit a continuous stream of steam until the button is pressed again. Whether your prefer this approach of steam production or if you prefer a button that needs to be pressed continuously to produce steam is a matter of personal preference. We do prefer a continuous press for steam production because we feel it gives greater control. Although, you do get some control here because Beldray have included a twist-knob on the front of the mop that will adjusts the rate of steam produced. A nice feature, considering that if you find your mop producing small puddles of water on the floor you can always lower the steam produced and prevent this from happening.
Once the steam is being emitted you simply use the device as you would a basic mop; and because it arrives with two cleaning pads you can get twice a much cleaning done before having to stop and wash the pad heads.
Also included with the device is a carpet glider that the mop head simple fits into – allowing you to freshen and lightly clean your carpets. It is worth mentioning here that some people think steam mops can do the same job as an actual carpet shampooer.
This is not the case.
Steam mops are great at refreshing carpets and lifting away light stains or dirt. But, if you’re after a deep clean then a steam mop is not for you and a carpet shampooer would be the better choice.
Using It as a Hand Held Steam Cleaner:
In our view a sign of a good all-in-one steam cleaner is a quick release mechanism that changes a steam mop to a steam cleaner in the blink of an eye – which the 5-in-1 does well. A release button on the handle quickly detaches it from the main body and transforms the device into a hand-held cleaner. It would have been nice if the mop body contained the hand-held steamer as a separate unit (like some models by Vax do), but given it’s low price point (around £50 at the time of writing this review) it is a very forgivable omission.
Once the handle is separated you are free to use any one of the 8 supplied attachments to perform a variety of cleaning jobs. How the device is triggered to emit steam now changes slightly, but only to your advantage. The ‘front steam button’ becomes inactive and the rear trigger button is used to emit the steam. This makes it much easier to use because the same hand used to hold the cleaner can also be used to activate the steam. The device can also switch to a ‘trigger’ style system, where steam is only emitted whilst the trigger button is held down – opposed to a continuous jet of steam whilst in upright mode. This provides a huge degree of control where it is required the most, and will allow you to blast steam only where and when it is needed.
Each attachment features the same style of locking mechanism to attach, meaning when you’ve used one you can easily use them all. Arrows indicators on the mop body and attachment let you know when the attachment is correctly aligned and a simple clockwise turn will ‘lock’ it in place.
What We Think About the Beldray Steam Mop – 5-in-1:
It would be unfair to compare the 5-in-1 steam mop to some higher end (and more expensive) cleaners produced by Vax or Shark. Or, to judge it harshly for its few short comings. When compared to other devices of a similar style and price bracket it competes exceptionally well and offers fantastic value for money. It is also nearly half the price of a very similar model produced by thane and offers virtually identical features and even some extras – such as the calcium filter on the filler jug.
So, if you’re looking for a good mid-range steam cleaner that does not break the bank, then we believe the 5-in-1 steam mop by Beldray may be just what you’re looking for.