DIY: Hand Held Steamer Repair
WARNING: Before you begin any repairs, make sure that the device is safe to disassemble. In the case of a steamer, make sure that the steamer is unplugged from the mains, is completely cold, and is empty of water. The steamer should have been unplugged for at least an hour before you begin any repairs. Steam is extremely dangerous, and you must take adequate precautions to ensure that you do not injure yourself. If you do not understand the potential dangers associated with this type of repair, you should not undertake it.
Hand-held steamers are perfect for cleaning in those hard to reach places without having to use nasty chemicals. If you live a hard water area, you might find that the trigger on your steamer gets stuck, and you can’t release the steam from the chamber. This is usually caused by limescale jamming up the valve inside the steamer, and is easy enough to fix with a screwdriver, pliers, and some PTFE tape.
The steam valve will have a stubby metal bar on one side, and the pipe to the nozze connected on the other. Remove the pipe to the nozzle by unscrewing the fitting with a spanner or pliers. There may be some sealant around the fitting. This will be replaced with PTFE tape later.
Use the pliers to turn the metal bar anticlockwise one turn. This will loosen any adhesions caused by limescale, and will increase the sensitivity of the trigger by unscrewing the valve fitting slightly.
Reattach the nozzle to the valve, remembering to wrap the threaded fitting with PTFE tape first. The PTFE ensures a tight seal, preventing any leaks.
Reassemble and test the steamer from a safe distance. Give the steamer time to get up to pressure, and look for any signs of leaking steam. If there are no leaks, put on a pair of gloves and test that the trigger is working properly.