Iron in the human farm has been available for a long time. It is enough to go to some local history museum to understand it. At first it was cast-iron products that required heating on the coals of the furnace. Then came the gas options. And now everyone without exception uses electric irons. Their main feature is the ability to bay the water inside. Needless to say, a pair of folds is smoothed much faster?
It seems that every small-scale manufacturer of household appliances is trying to produce its irons. This raises the question: how to choose an iron, how not to run into the model that really will not iron? This article will try to answer this question. Along the way, you will learn about why the use of iron is not recommended in wooden houses with old wiring, what steam supply systems exist and how the sole of modern devices manages to remain without scum. In short, read and be enlightened!
THE MAIN CRITERIA FOR SELECTION
The first electric irons did not allow water to be poured inside them. So they couldn’t produce steam. You must have seen such devices in your parents or even grandparents. Some of you used them independently – similar irons in mass quantities were produced in the USSR, almost every major city. Now they are not produced at all. Any iron available on store shelves is able to provide a steaming mode. But! Budget models are endowed with only horizontal evaporation function. If you are going to use iron rarely enough, then you will be quite satisfied. Others are advised to look for a device that allows vertical steaming. It costs such an iron a little more expensive, but it is easier to work with them. Have you noticed the folds on the curtains or pants? They took an iron in their hands, connected to the power grid, waited a little and walked through the fabric, not getting the ironing board… Convenient!
And then there are the irons with the built-in steam generator. If in conventional models water is stored in a liquid state, turning into steam when passing through heating elements, the type of devices mentioned above works on a different principle. In fact, it is a full-fledged ironing system – in many stores such irons are singled out in a separate category. They take up a lot of space and are noticeably more expensive, and all because of the special capacity, which constantly produces steam, then transmitted to the iron by a hose. Perhaps, the purchase of such a model makes sense only if you are going to wield an iron almost every day and for a very long time. In fact, devices with a steam generator are created for professional work. For example, similar ironing systems can be found in laundries. And the average person more than lacks the capabilities of an ordinary iron.
Now many electrical appliances are capable of heating water. For example, you can remember a washing machine, a coffee machine and an electric kettle. But the fastest heating requires an iron. Moreover, they heat the sole to maximum temperatures, so that the water is instantly transformed into steam. In this regard, such devices have increased energy consumption. Even the simplest models have a capacity of more than 1000 w. Note that in older homes, wiring may not be able to handle such a load. Therefore, it is not recommended to use such a device in villages.
The power of modern irons varies from 1400 to 3000 w. Depending on this parameter, the heating speed can be medium and fast. A family of two or three people will have enough medium-strength iron. If you don’t want higher electricity bills, you can search stores for a low-energy device. Usually these models work due to the ergonomic supply of steam.
Another important option to look out for when choosing an iron. Previously, all irons were equipped with a sole made of ordinary aluminum or stainless steel. Needless to say, soon on such a sole appeared scratches and abundant traces of scum? In all sorts of newspapers and magazines even published ways to eliminate scum, so that the iron ceased to look pathetic. Fortunately, the situation has changed now. Now the stores sell appliances with the following types of soles:
- Aluminium type – still actively used in budget irons. The main advantage of such a sole is the minimum weight. And it heats up noticeably faster than some steel. But there is an aluminum sole and a serious drawback – when using such an iron it is necessary to monitor the temperature. If you suddenly heat the device too much, and then began to iron the delicate fabric (silk or synthetic), then trouble can happen. The fabric will simply stick to the sole, after which it will be hopelessly spoiled. The iron will then have to be cleaned with detergent. Also on aluminum the worst damage remains, from scratches you do not protect it exactly.
- The stainless steel is also still used in the creation of the sole of the iron. Again, only in the most budget models. The advantage of such material is practicality and strength, traces on it to leave much more difficult. You can not be afraid of buttons and metal zippers – they should not leave scratches. But the weight of an iron with a similar sole is much greater than that of a device with an aluminum base.
- Ceramic sole irons have become equipped relatively recently. This is quite a fragile material, so the buttons on the shirts need to be avoided. Not to mention the fact that such a sole can be damaged in the accidental fall of an iron. But ceramics provides almost the best glide on the fabric, and also withstands any temperature. Lingerie to ceramics almost does not stick, it is cleaned with a usual sponge and soapy water. A little more durable are metal-ceramic soles, but such irons should be treated carefully.
- Teflon coating is equipped with the soles of those irons, the cost of which can not be called budget. Its disadvantage lies in the fact that the contact of metal with Teflon spoils the latter. This suggests that lightning and metal buttons like an iron should not be ironed. But the Teflon sole slides perfectly, and sticking underwear to it is simply impossible to imagine.
Any iron is equipped with a number of temperature modes, which are selected individually for each type of fabric. If you have underwear made of synthetic materials, pure silk or silk with the addition of polyester, then look for an iron that is minimally heated to 110 C. As for the maximum parameter, it can reach 230 degrees C – such a temperature is required for the processing of pure cotton and flax.
Many irons have a different type of steam feed. Without the function of steaming now can not do – it helps to remove absolutely all the folds on modern types of fabric. At the very least, its inclusion will speed up the ironing process, saving electricity. The steam production parameter is measured in grams. For example, under normal conditions, ordinary irons produce 30 grams of steam per minute. The higher this parameter, the easier and faster to pat dried underwear.
In some models, the degree of vapor formation can be adjusted. This is to ensure that the water poured into the device does not evaporate too quickly, if it is not required. The steam comes out through special holes in the sole, which can be of different shapes. Practice shows that it does not have a special impact on work. But the quality and convenience of ironing can vary from the number of these holes. If you want to speed up the process, look for an iron with at least 50 such holes on the sole. Note that more of them affect the increase in steam production. If 100 holes are placed on the sole, the comfort of ironing will be maximum, but after a couple of shirts you have to pour water back into the iron.
Many more models are endowed with the function of maximum vapor emission (so it penetrates into the structure of the fabric, and not remains on its surface). Almost everyone has a water splashing function, usually using a pair of holes in the spout area.
EQUALLY IMPORTANT CHARACTERISTICS
- The length of the cord – be sure to pay attention to this option, unless you have an ironing board with a built-in extension.
- The weight of the iron should not be very heavy. On the process of ironing this option now does not affect (removal of folds is the function of steaming), but hands with the use of a heavy device can get tired very quickly.
- The handle of the iron – usually it is stationary. But in the so-called “road” models can be used rotating pen – it is very convenient.
- Safety is that the device automatically shuts down if it is stationary for a long time. Budget models are only turned off if they are vertically oriented for 10 minutes. But, you know, for such a time to go nowhere will go a decent amount of electricity. And on the shelves of stores began to appear models with Wi-Fi module, able to send notifications to a smartphone or tablet.
- The fight against squimp – it is led by the most advanced irons. Usually it is to install a special cartridge that make the water softer. Of course, from time to time the cartridge needs to be changed. If there is no protection against scum at the iron, pour boiled or filtered water into it.
POPULAR IRON MANUFACTURERS
Try to buy an iron from some famous manufacturer. Chinese products will not please you, about the savings you will forget after the first spoiled blouse. Perhaps the greatest authority now has Tefal – a company famous for its non-stick coating. There are even wireless models in its range! Although it is not recommended to buy them – a huge overpayment in them is adjacent to the need every 20-30 seconds to put the device on a special platform.
Other manufacturers that have earned the respect of customers are Philips, Bosch, Braun, Polaris, Panasonic, Electrolux and Redmond. If you have an acute lack of funds, you can look towards the brands Maxwell, Rolsen, Scarlett, Supra and VITEK. But there is a chance that such an iron will not last you very long.