Dry or steam iron?!Roos Westmeijer-Hoekstra
We have all been there; you have arrived at your destination, got installed in your hotel room and you are getting ready for dinner. You take your carefully packed outfit from your suitcase and see that is is wrinkled…hotel iron to the rescue!
As a guest the most important thing about an iron is that it is effective and unwrinkles your clothing, however as an hotelier you will probably make another consideration when looking for new hotel irons. There are important pro’s and cons to review before you decide between a dry or steam iron.
Hotel irons differ from regular irons as they are protected through an auto-off function in case a guest forgets the iron is on. Hotel irons turn off automatically after several seconds of inactivity for safety reasons. Furthermore general wattage in a hotel iron is often lower than at home, for this reason a hotel iron usually has a lower wattage than the iron you have at home. The wattage difference does not mean that hotel irons are not powerful. The lower wattage helps to minimize impact on the hotel electric system in order to avoid electricity outages.
Steam irons are most similar to the iron you might have at home, it has several convenient options such as a steam function and diverse temperatures/settings. A dry iron is in most cases only equipped with a temperature turntable that is also used to turn the iron on and off.
The benefit of a steam iron is the steam function which makes unwrinkling of fabrics a lot easier, with a dry iron it is a lot harder to unwrinkle clothing and reach a smooth surface.
A dry iron does have one major benefit that makes this type of iron the most chosen iron for hotels; it does not have to be descaled.
Benefits of steam irons
Steam irons have to be descaled every 3 months as limescale residues block the steam holes of a steam iron or steam generator, causing rust. As a result, the iron will no longer steam properly or brown spots will appear on your iron and can damage the object that is being ironed.
Fortunately, all steam irons have a provision to prevent limescale. This slows the deposition of lime to a greater or lesser extent, however this does not replace regular descaling of the iron.
Descaling is a time consuming process and it is hard to track if and when the iron in any hotelroom has been treated. A malfunctioning iron that is a victim of limescale can result in damaging a hotel guests clothing, definitely not a desired situation.
Tips and tricks for using a dry iron
Situations like this can be easily prevented by providing your guests a dry iron and share the following ironing tips and tricks with your guests:
– Choose the right temperature. Clothing is always equipped with a washing label that provides clear instructions on how to wash and iron the item. The iron icon indicates the iron temperature you can apply.
– Iron the fabric when it is slightly damp. Creases will then go out more easily. Guests can hang out there laundry in the bathroom while they take a shower or they can use a plant spray to moisten the laundry.
How to decalcify a steam iron
When you do choose a steam iron for your hotel you can use the following general tips to descale the iron. Please check the cleaning instruction on your specific iron to make sure you can apply the method below.
- Mix 1 cup of water with 1 cup of (cleaning) vinegar and pour it into the water compartment of your iron
- Heat the iron and then press the steam button a few times
- Turn off the iron and let the mixture work for about an hour
- Drain your iron and rinse several times with clean tap water
If you would like to discuss this topic further or if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us!