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Code : B00RYWE8F0
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- Walgreens Warm Steam Vaporizer
- Color: White
- Brand: Chadamyi
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful.
Decent steamer, especially for the $$. You just have to know how to use it properly.
By Hedley Lamarr
I have 2 of these steamers and have been using them for perhaps 6 years each. It has it's pros and cons but with proper use, it will work fine.
Yes, the previous design allowed the lid with the electrodes to be secured in place. The current design does not. Regarding the comment that this steamer could be spilled in the night, just where exactly are you trying to balance this thing? A night stand or dresser away from stumbling sleepy heads would be considered safe. A chair next to the bed or on the head board, not so much. In all my years I have never spilled it once, nor even come close.
In addition to a secure location, I strongly recommend placing the steamer on a thick folded towel. Beneath the towel I recommend placing a large, unexpanded trash bag to be a water barrier to the surface overall. The towel will catch any accidental spills of water, the wetness off the bottom of the tank when you fill it, accidental menthol liquid spills, and give you a place to set the steamer head and menthol bottle when you go to add any salt to the water. The trash bag will ensure that the captured liquid doesn't reach the surface of whatever the steamer is sitting on. The thick towel will also act as an thermal insulator, protecting the surface from the elevated temps caused by the electrodes heating the water at the center of the tank.
The reservoir could be bigger but it usually lasts me between 6 and 9 hours. Because of the electrode insertion design, it won't ever be able to fully consume the reservoir. DO NOT OVERFILL THE TANK. This is what causes the lid to float. Don't try this thinking it will get you more run-time.
Regarding the steamer spitting and sloshing out water, yes that can happen if you salt the water improperly. Too much salt will cause you steamer to spit and sputter, splashing hot water all over you, the surface it's sitting on, the floor, the cat, etc. You need to follow the directions carefully to achieve optimum results. Here's some basic instruction:
1) Fill the tank to the Max Fill line with WARM TAP water and DO NOT add any salt.
2) Insert the steamer head, hold it down for a few seconds to allow it to fill with water, then plug it in.
3) Wait 5 minutes, observing the volume of steam being emitted from the steamer. You'll likely see a small amount of steam but nothing substantial. Your goal is a visible stream of steam. It is possible to achieve a thick, heavy stream of steam under ideal conditions.
4) Unplug the steamer head and raise it out of the tank, allowing it to drain the internal reservoir into the tank.
5) Measure exactly 1/8 tsp (TEASPOON!) of salt and add it to the warm water. Carefully swish the water in the tank to allow to to dissolve and be evenly distributed.
6) Repeat steps 2-5 until you have a steady stream of steam emitting from the steamer without any gurgling or spitting.
It is entirely possibly to achieve a very thick stream of steam. I've had steam so thick I couldn't see the wall behind the steam through it. I'm not exactly sure what combination of water, minerals and salt achieved that. I was at a hotel at the time which had somewhat softer water. Experiment with the salt levels and water types until you reach an acceptable result. Keep in mind that most people use a max of 1/4 tsp of salt per tank. Also keep in mind that some salt will remain in the tank once the steamer reaches the lowest water level that it can steam. You'll want to reduce your salt levels each time you add more water if you don't also rinse the existing salt out of the tank and off the steamer head.
The tank has a reservoir directly in front of and below the hole that the steam is emitted from. Fill this with menthol liquid to spread menthol scent around the room. You can also use other liquids such as eucalyptus or camphor oil. One useful trick is to soak a cotton ball in the oil and placing that in the cup. This is particularly helpful in case the steam spits and spurts during usage. One issue that can occur is overfilling the scent reservoir either when filling or from the spit water. This will cause it to overflow the cup and run back into the tank. Some of the scent liquids can cause the steamer to bubble and froth. Again though, if you prevent the steamer from spitting to begin with by controlling the salt levels and you don't overfill the scent cup, this should not be a problem. The problem can be avoided.
The last topic is cleaning the steamer. This is an electrode boiler steam. This is AC current, not DC so this is not electrolysis. It literally bowls the water and emits steam. Any residual minerals in the water will remain in the tank, will be stuck to the inner chamber of the steamer lid, or to the electrodes themselves. This requires occasional cleaning. How often it happens depends on your tap water mineral content. Most city water mineral content is reasonably low. However some water supplies have high iron, calcium, lime, or magnesium levels. Well water may have bacteria (that you should deal with on a whole house level).
There are lots of things that can be in your water and will remain in the steamer once the water is boiled off. You have 2 options to clean it. Either soak the steamer head and tank in a chemical bath like vinegar or CLR, or you need to remove the 2 Torx screws that hold the red cap, light and electrodes to the black plastic heating chamber. Then scrubs/scrap the pieces clean. I use a wooden clothespin to scrap the electrodes. The wood is softer than the electrodes so it won't damage the surface. Odds are you'll need to remove the lid to empty out the larger pieces of black scale from the inner heating chamber unless of course the CLR or vinegar manage to completely dissolve it. Try it both ways and see. Be sure to thoroughly rinse the components before using them again. The manual cleaning process should only take 10 minutes to do at most. Longer if you soak the components of course.
(***It should go without saying that you need to have the steamer unplugged and have allowed time for it to cool down before cleaning it***)
Overall this steamer works fine once you learn how to use it properly. Could they make a better version? No doubt. The current version will get you by though. I recommend it.