“ Brand: Russell Hobbs / 2400W / Type: Steam / Soleplate: Ceramic „
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.
Short name: Russell Hobbs 18720