Russell Hobb's Iron Reviews
Russell Hobbs 20550-10 Steamglide Pro Iron
Before I go any further with this review, I have to state that I am not a huge fan or ironing. Indeed, it is something that I would rather escape at all costs and would rather wear clothes not needing the touch of an iron. However, with work it is not practical to do so. Therefore, I have always approached the act of ironing as part of ... the Sunday evening ritual that is the transition between weekend and working week. For over 15 years I have had Tefal iron and given it some reasonable use. It still gave my clothes a crisp crease and flattened them properly, so I would probably not have bothered changing it. Except for the not so tiny problem of the staining on the base. After one too many white shirts was smeared by the mark I decided that its useful life was at an end. Therefore, I resolved to hunt for a new iron.
After a search lasting literally seconds (I am a man, I went to the first place that had irons!) I found myself on the Argos website. Having some Christmas vouchers to spend, I figured that this was the best time to spend them. Looking through the online catalogue I confess to being baffled by the plethora of choices on offer. It was like a rainbow of confusion. I was all-at-sea in the ocean of irons. So, I decided to take a bit of an educated gamble. Knowing that Russell Hobbs are a decent make, I found this particular model. It had lots of things written about it (more of this later) but most importantly to me it was (and is) on sale at half its usual price and can be bought for £24.99.
Now, I did look at the site to try to find out a little more about what I was buying before I nipped out to get it and I managed to find out what was, for me, some key facts. Then, being a man, I totally forgot them and went and bought the iron anyway. When I got it home I was very impressed. At first glance it looks sleeker and more modern than my old iron. The cut away rear base and the flowing purple sections seem to give the iron an almost elegant look. One thing I noticed straight away was that it was lighter than my old beastie. Even full it weighed in at less than the old faithful. Apparently it weighs 1.28kg but I am assuming that is the empty weight as a full tank takes it to just over 1.5kg. My old one may have been only a couple of hundred grams heavier but that can add up to a difference with a larger load of ironing.
My old iron was very simple. It had an easy to set heat gauge, steam and water squirt buttons. That was pretty much it. So, it was with some trepidation that I viewed the unfamiliar layout of my new device. It is much like cars and mobile phones, each manufacturer has some subtle differences in the layout. That being said, the central dial is reasonably obvious to use. I say reasonably because I didn't notice what the dots to indicate heat aligned with initially. There is a raised purple line (on the purple background!) under the dial (when in an upright position.) This allows a quick twist to set the temperature and I must admit it got up to temperature very quickly, as indicated by the small light in the handle. This is a bit awkward to see if holding it, so I would prefer a slightly different location but it is no real big deal.
There are the two standard buttons for water and steam shot (though reversed from my old model!) and in front is a lever to control the amount of steam produced. The instruction leaflet informs you of the correct settings to have set in particular instances, so is very useful. The water tank flap is in front of this and lifts up to reveal a circular opening to fill the tank. One thing I noticed was that the small jug provided needs at least 3 refills to fill the water tank completely, so it would be more efficient to use a household jug.
The last button is one that I am very excited about, as I never had one before. It is the self-clean button. Thank goodness, cleaning an iron has never been my idea of a fun job, manually scraping out scale etc is a laborious task. I must say that I have not used the button yet, as the device is still so new but I am looking forwards to giving it a go. I am sure that the novelty will wear off but it does advise that you use this feature at least monthly in normal water areas and more in harder water areas. As I don't want to buy a new iron again, this is one thing that I am going to try to keep on top of.
The acid test was in the using. I honestly believed that an iron was just an iron. Much the same and the same kind of results. Boy, was I wrong! My new beastie slid effortlessly across all my ironing and steamed stubborn creases out of existence with an ease seeming magical. Indeed, were I from the Middle Ages I would have burnt it as a witch there and then. In much less time than usual my ironing was done. That's a winner right there.
Any other time, I would have left it at that, got on with my life and thought no more about it. Now, however, an insidious force has crept into my life. It causes me to consider things more deeply and research actual facts about things. It is safe to say that my time on Dooyoo has caused a change in the way of looking at things. In fact, I was so disappointed that this item was not in the Dooyoo register that I forwarded it as a product suggestion and here we are!
Therefore, I went back to the website and looked a little further. What made my iron a good one (to me?) I am not going to post the entire tech specs but want to aim what I hope are the main points (and some explanation) in the direction of a Dooyoo audience that is quite capable of reading the side of a box.
Number 1. It has a ceramic soleplate. Even before I looked it up I knew this was a good thing. It is very hard wearing and non-stick. The heat is distributed very evenly and I found this was very much the case in my ironing. There was no one part that couldn't do the job. This is the main factor in the easy glide over the fabrics. It is the best type of soleplate to have and I ,for one, am never looking back!
Number 2. Steam output. Not being an expert, all I knew was that more steam is good. This one delivers 40g/min or a steam "shot" of 130g/min. Looking at some other models, this compares well to ones selling at around the £30-£40 mark. All I know is that it is plenty for my needs, though I would look for higher if I were doing a lot of heavy fabrics.
Number 3. Auto Shut-Off. Yay! Ever been worried about being distracted in the middle of ironing? Well, this shuts down after 30 seconds if soleplate is down or 8 minutes if upright, so that eliminates much of that issue.
Number 4. Cleaning. Already mentioned self-clean facility but it also has an anti-scale build up fitted and is anti-drip to eliminate mess.
Number 5. Wattage. I had no idea why this mattered until I checked. This is a 2600w iron, with most of its fellows being 2400w. I obviously thought more was better. Jeremy Clarkson's cry of, "Power!" ringing in my ears. Apparently this helps to speed up heating time and increase performance, so is pretty useful.
Number 6. 3m cable. Seems a basic thing but my last one was 2.5m, as are many others today. I found that the extra half metre made it much easier to get my iron plugged in and the ironing board to an effective position. (Namely with me being able to see the TV!)
Number 7. 300ml water tank. This holds more than enough liquid for me to get through a good few irons without needing to change it.
As I said, there are other things mentioned but these were the ones that really seemed to matter to me. What they added up to was a very good iron. The fact that it reduced my ironing time due to its effectiveness leads me to be extremely pleased with my purchase. At £24.99 I am sure that you will be hard pressed to find a better iron. At its ostensible "normal" price of £49.99 I am not sure that it would be as much of a leader. Yes it does well against most in that price range but there are irons at that price better in every category, so I would not pay the full price for it.
I heartily recommend this to anyone who has to do a reasonable amount of household ironing. The build quality is good at the price I paid and is a touch of quality among those of a similar price range. Well worth the 5 stars at the price I paid.
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Russell Hobbs 20250 Steam Iron
Up until recently it was my personal belief that small appliances such as irons are a bit of a waste of money. Whilst I did appreciate having neatly pressed clothes, I would have much rather be spending my money on a pair of shoes than an iron and therefore when we purchased our last iron I have to admit that it was the cheapest one in ... the shop. Unfortunately for me, cheap doesn't always mean cheerful, and my purchase only lasted a matter of six months before it gave up the ghost (or steam function) and we went on the hunt for a replacement model. Being that our last iron had been a bit of a disaster and I had been the one that chose it in the first place, I handed the reigns of choice over to my less than enthusiastic husband who selected this Russell Hobbs 20250.
~An Overview of the Iron~
As my husbands favourite colour is red, there were really no surprises when he selected this iron over all the other brands in the shop. This iron has all the vibrancy of a shiny red racing car with its red transparent plastic body inlaid with some more functional white areas. This iron is built in the same style as you would expect to see any other iron, however for the purposes of this review these are as follows:
The front of the iron is tapered to a point which enables it to be pressed inside the most awkward of small spaces. On the top of the front is a white plastic catch which opens with a small click enabling the tank to be filled. Behind the tank filling hole is a small red lever and this moves from side to side enabling the user to select their preferred steam function whilst two red buttons above this lever give the options to spray a jet of water during use or to give a jet of steam. I am personally a fan of using jets of steam as they really enable my husbands cotton t shirts to be de-creased and therefore having the two buttons on the front of the iron means that they are easy to reach whilst my hand is around the handle. Another feature on the front of the iron is a light which glows orange when the iron has reached the intended temperature.
In the middle of the iron is the handle which is built into the body of the iron. The handle is red in colour and slightly cushioned which means that it feels comfortable in my hand. Below the handle is a large circular dial with which to select the temperature setting. The dial ranges from the cooler heat settings which are shown with a white and blue line to the hottest colour setting which is show with a red line and an illustration of three dots. In the middle of the iron is the tank, and the maximum fill is indicated with a white "MAX" line which gives a clear indication of where to fill the water up to.
The back of this iron is slightly longer than my previous model and this does mean that it only just fits inside my kitchen cupboard between uses. The rear is tapered and stamped with the "Russell Hobbs" logo and serves to house the cord of the iron which is wrapped around it when not in use.
On the base of the iron (or front depending on which way it is standing) is the plate, and this is ceramic in material and punched with a series of holes to allow the steam to pass through and into the creased laundry.
Although the iron is rather standard to other models in size and shape, the colour really gives it vibrancy and means that it stands out when it is housed inside my kitchen cupboard.
This iron does come with a small plastic jug with which to fill up the body of the iron. This measuring device has a slightly tapered spout which means that it fits easily into the filling hole at the top of the iron.
Although I am not much of a technical person this iron has a number of features which make the dreaded task of ironing all the easier. These are as follows:
* 3m power cord
* Temperature light indicator
* 330ml water tank
* Anti drip capabilities
* Anti scale
* Variable and vertical steam
~Set Up and Use~
Although it is wise to read the instructions manual before using any new appliance, I have to admit to being a bit gung-ho when I get a new appliance and this iron was no exception. I began by removing my shiny red iron from its cardboard packaging and removing all the sticky transparent pieces of plastic from its extremities, including one over the ceramic plate. I then filled up the tank using the accompanying plastic jug. This is where I feel the need to criticise this iron, being that to fill it up you have to lie the ceramic plate face down meaning that the "MAX" fill line is immediately rendered useless. However by using the measuring line on the jug I was able to fill it up in two carefully poured squirts. Having filled up, I then placed the iron on my expectant ironing board and moved the dial to a medium heat setting before plugging it into the mains. The orange light flashed for what must have been only a few seconds before it glowed orange telling me that it was ready to go.
Using this iron really is simple and the tapered end means that it fits inside the most awkward of spaces. The ceramic hot plate seems to glide over even the most textured of fabric surfaces whilst the spongy handle makes this iron incredibly comfortable to hold during use. A feature which I had missed on my previous iron and that I find particularly handy on heavier or more dense fabrics was the steam function as this produces larges jets of steam every time the button is pressed. The steam really helps to iron out even the most determined of creases and therefore makes my laundry look really clean and fresh and helps it go into neatly folded piles rather than crumpled ones. This iron is slightly heavier than my previous model being around 1.5kg however I like the heaviness of it as I feel it adds to the impression of quality and sits firmly onto thicker clothing items. Another excellent feature of this iron is the 3m cord. The length means that I have no difficulties in ironing larger items plus, the swivel function at the base of the iron means that the iron can be manoeuvred in any direction and not be hindered by the cable.
~Price and Availability~
As luck would have it this iron is less expensive than other similar models and currently retails in Argos on offer for £19.99 down from £24.99. Despite paying the higher price tag for my iron I feel that it is well worth the money. Just the fact that it has lasted well over the six months of my previous model means that it is more than worth the investment in my opinion. In addition, the fact that I associate Russell Hobbs with good quality products means that £19.99 is a small price to pay.
This iron comes with a 2 year manufacturers guarantee which provides me with peace of mind should it loose any functions in this period.
As this review will demonstrate I have been very impressed with this iron both in terms of performance and aesthetics. This iron is nice to look at and although bright, the red colour really adds a cheerful look to an otherwise boring task. The iron glides over my clothes and leaves them fresh and smooth and the steam function only adds to the capabilities of this iron when pressing heavier garments. I also like the fact that all the small details have been thought of in the design of this product, such as the length of the cable and the fact that the base of the iron stores the cable whilst not in use. In addition, the "anti-scale" function must clearly be working as I have had my iron for around 8 months now and it still looks as good as it did the day I purchased it.
Overall this is an excellent product and one which I would highly recommend. As a result it gets a well deserved five stars from me.
I hope this review has been of help and thanks for reading! x
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Russell Hobbs 18720
My husband knocked our last iron off the ironing board and it became unusable (it did cross my mind whether that was to get out of ironing actually!). We had to find a replacement and quick! I came across this steam iron in Tesco on special offer, half price at £19.50, reduced from £39. It had the features we needed and seemed like a ... good buy. It's still available there at that price today in store and online from Tesco Direct.
The iron comes in a white and pink colour - this was slightly annoying really as we run a modern family where me and my husband both share the ironing duties - pink is not a good look for him! We'd have preferred a slightly more neutral colour like other similar priced ones available - in light blue or purple for example. As it is a steam iron, it requires filling with water before use to create the steam - there is a small plastic jug in the box to help with this which is a great addition. The iron's overall size is around 32cm x 12cm x 15cm.
The iron is described as a 'steam glide' iron and has a ceramic plate, rather than just a non stick plate - this was it's main attraction when I purchased it as I compared it to owning hair straighteners, I know from experience with those that the ceramic ones are always more expensive and give much better results so I assumed the same thing with an iron. It has 2400w of power which was the highest power available in my price range - there were others in the range in Tesco at a similar price that were only 2000w of power, although our last iron was 2000w and we never experienced any problems with that one so for our everyday use I don't suppose the power matters so much for our needs. They state that it means the iron will heat up more quickly.
The iron holds 300ml of water which I find is quite a large amount. I do have to refill it during an ironing session but I'd say I get to iron around 3 to 4 of my husband's shirts before having to. It has a variable steam setting (2 in total - one's a continuous smaller steam setting, the other is a powerful shot of steam), a thermostatic control and is free standing so can't be wall mounted, although this isn't something I'd consider doing anyway in our house.
Using the Iron
When I first started using the iron, the first thing I immediately noticed (before even plugging it in!) was the fact that it didn't feel sturdy when stood up on the board. I'm the type of person that moves the ironing board around while ironing because my husband wants to get past me or I want to get round it to take clothes upstairs mid ironing session but I would have to be very careful if I'd left this standing on top. Our ironing board has a built in stand which I never used previously, but I've had to start using it with this iron as I don't trust it stood on it's own. The first positive I noticed about the iron though when I got it from the box was how lightweight it felt and how easy the handle was to grip on to.
The next thing was to fill it up with water. This is where I came across the next issue. There is a small 'trapdoor' that opens to let the water be poured into the iron. This is a really poor design. The door opens upwards when the iron is stood up and it makes it very fiddly to pour the water in. On our last iron, the door opened downwards and it made the job so much easier. It is such a small thing but it makes such a big difference, please rethink this design Mr Hobbs.
Then, I plug it in and wait for it to heat up. The cable is a good length at 2 metres and flexible so there's no need for me to use an extension lead as I sometimes used to with my old one. There's a light indicator on it and the light goes out when the iron is ready to use. The length of time that it takes is all dependent on the thermostat setting. I'll be honest and say that I rarely use any setting on the iron apart from it's highest setting. A lot of the flimsy thin items I have hang dry and then they rarely need ironing afterwards. A major part of ironing is work shirts and pants, all on the highest setting. I'd say it takes around 10 seconds to heat to the desired temperature I want then it's ready to use. There are lower settings though to for more delicate garments.
Then I iron away. This is where I say persevere with it. I absolutely hated this iron at first, the contact between the iron and the shirts felt terrible. It felt like I was using a plastic iron to go over the clothes and I am sure this must be because I'd never used an iron with a ceramic plate. It just felt as though it wasn't putting any effort into getting rid of creases.
But, now after using it regularly, it's definitely grown on me. It felt like it wasn't putting effort in at first because very little effort is actually needed to remove the creases - it's definitely a case of gliding as it is advertised. I don't really need to press it onto the clothes when ironing like I did with my previous one. I have the steam setting on the continuous setting, it states this is 35g. If I iron across a shirt for 3 to 4 seconds, it lets out a small steam cloud afterwards. The steam definitely works wonders on the creases in our clothes - I don't find that I need to re-iron anything once they've been run over with this as the majority of the creases disappear on first attempt. It also doesn't take me long to iron a shirt - I'd say 3 to 4 minutes and that's making sure I've not missed any part of it. Our clothes have time in the dryer first though and I do find this helps reduce the amount of creases before ironing too which could contribute.
I think this is a good iron, although it has some glaringly obvious bad points such as the awkward filling of water and it's inability to stand up properly without fear of falling. I rate it 3 stars overall, taking one off for each of those issues. I would recommend this iron though overall as for it's price on special offer, I feel it's quite a good buy. I'm not sure I'd recommend it at it's full price though as it seems a bit expensive.
Thanks for reading :o)
ps - I've had to rate battery life here, but obviously this isn't applicable to it.
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Russell Hobb's Iron
Brand: Russell Hobbs / Type: Steam Iron / Wattage: 2600 watts
Brand: Russell Hobbs / Type: Iron - Short name: Russell Hobbs 18464
Brand: Russell Hobbs / Type: Steam Iron - Steam iron: 2000 watts / Steam output 35g/min / Shot of steam 90g/min / Capacity of water tank 250ml / Anti-drip / 3m power cord / Weight 1.2kg / Ceramic soleplate with button groove / Soft-grip handle / 1 pre-set programme / Pre-set programmes inc...
Brand: Russell Hobbs / Type: Steam Iron
Brand: Russell Hobbs / Iron / 2400W / Type: Steam / Soleplate: Ceramic - Short name: Russell Hobbs 18720
Brand: Russell Hobbs / Iron Type: Steam Iron / Cord Type: Corded
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