I bought the Gener8 steam mop from the Bid TV shopping channel around 2 months ago. I'd been thinking about getting one for ages as most of our house has laminate flooring and with a baby and a cat there's always mess that needs cleaning up! I bought this primarily to remove minor stains that appear from everyday life. I didn't want to spend a lot incase it was one of those fads that would end up gathering dust in the garage after 5 minutes - I spent £19.99 (and £7.99 postage) on it. Mine is in lime green, although it was also available in the purple shown here. I was very unsure because I'd never heard of the manufacturer but thought I'd give it a go.
What's in the Box?
There is the main part of the 1500W mop, a handle that attaches to the main section, 2 removable cleaning pads to attach to the bottom, a plastic rim to fit around the pad, a funnel, a 400ml jug and a set of instructions.
The mop is so simple to set up, the handle just slots neatly into the main part of the mop. I've never tried to remove the handle since for storing as I just leave ours fully in tact but I get the impression that once it's locked in place then it stays there. The pad sticks to the bottom of the mop by Velcro. Then the mop just needs filling with water - this is where the funnel and plastic jug come in handy. There's a small plastic screw cap at the back of the mop that opens but the gap is so small it would be impossible to fill it without these. The funnel fits into this gap nicely though and then the jug pours the water into that perfectly. Once the maximum line is reached, it's a case of plugging it in and getting ready to mop. There is no on or off switch on it so it immediately lights up and starts to heat up. The instructions say that there is an indicator light that lets the user know when it's ready to use but I can't find this anywhere - the light on mine is permanently on while using and only goes off when I switch it off at the wall!
As the indicator light on mine never seems to go off, I just judge when it's ready to use by giving it a quick go across the laminate flooring. I know it's ready as it makes out big steam noises once I move it across the floor. These get louder and louder as it's used more in one cleaning bout. The floor has to be swept first - just to make sure that any small bits are brushed away - the mop cleans the floor but doesn't pick up any pieces of dirt.
The handle is long enough to manoeuvre the mop a bit like a vacuum cleaner, although it would be handier if the handle could be adjusted and was a bit more flexible as if I had a choice I'd probably make it a bit shorter for my height at 5ft 2 (although my husband won't let me use this as an excuse not to do the job!). I would say that it's around 1 metre in height. I don't know the exact length of the cable but it's nice and long - our living room is 16ft long and I can easily do in there with it and then well into the hall without unplugging.
The mop glides across the floor quite easily due to the mop's head. The floor gets damp as it moves across it but I've found that it's not half as bad as I expected, although I do find we need to be careful before walking on it, I always have to check that it's dried properly. It does dry fairly quickly but not instantly.
I find that the end result is great, both on laminate and on tiled floors, although I find I need to use it every few days (as well as brushing and vacuuming every day) to keep the floor looking sparkling clean. This has definitely not replaced any cleaning routines that I had before buying, it is an extra. That may sound a little strange (adding to my workload!) but I think it's worth it because the floor looks gleaming after I've finished and not dull like it does from brushing and vacuuming alone. I have definitely noticed a big difference from when I started using it. Even my husband did and things like that would normally bypass him completely!
I find that once I've finished cleaning, I switch it off at the wall but am quite paranoid about leaving it stood up on one area incase it leaves a mark on the floor. Luckily it does cool down quite quickly so I just keep moving it around every so often until it cools. As I said earlier, the pads are removable and it comes with two. They are also machine washable so I can always have one in the wash and the other on the go. They wash great actually, better than I expected. They have shrunk a little but not by a huge amount and they are certainly still just as useful.
I would recommend this as a beginners steam mop, for someone like me who doesn't want to spend a lot as they're unsure whether they'll get much use from one. I now know that I'll get a lot of use from it and at the price I paid, I feel that even if I only get a few months use before replacing it I'll have had my money's worth. It doesn't feel or look fantastic quality but it's reasonable and for that price I have little to complain about. I rate it 4 stars, taking a star off due to the confusing indicator light.
Thanks for reading :o)