But is this claim supported by studies? We’ve scoured the Internet for good resources, and here’s a summary of what we found. These sources are published in reputable journals such as the Clinical & Experimental Allergy Journal (Clin Exp Allergy) and the American Journal of Veterinary Research (Am J Vet Res).
Study 1: Steam Cleaning as a Measure to Control House Dust Mites
In a study titled “The use of domestic steam cleaning for the control of house dust mites,” researchers Colloff MJ, Taylor C, and Merrett TG used a “domestic steam cleaner” to treat carpet squares with a known number of dust mites.
The study lasted for 4 months, in which the researchers used 8 control carpet squares and 8 treated carpet squares.
The result? After 4 months, the researchers found that there was a “statistical difference at the 5% level” between the two groups of carpet squares.
In short, the researchers concluded that steam cleaning is a highly effective and efficient means of eliminating house dust mites (Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus).
Study 2: Steam Cleaning as Means to Disinfect a Veterinary Hospital
As you know, our pets can be an excellent carrier of germs, dirt, and other harmful microorganisms. So at a veterinary hospital, disinfection should be taken very seriously.
Is steam cleaning an effective way to disinfect your favorite vet clinic?
According to Wood CL et.al., it is. In their study titled “Effectiveness of a steam cleaning unit for disinfection in a veterinary hospital,” which was published in the American Journal of Veterinary Research, the application of steam is said to be “significantly reduce bacterial numbers on a variety of surfaces” within the vet hospital.
The researchers added that using steam to prevent health-care-associated infections can be a good alternative to chemical disinfection.
Conclusion: Yes, Steam Cleaning is Effective!
Okay, so based on the studies presented, steam cleaning your home’s (or a facility’s) surfaces is effective in eliminating germs and other disease-causing organisms.
But when it comes to a quantified answer to the question on “how effective steam cleaning is,” we have yet to come across a literature that gives us exact numbers.