I was recently lucky enough to get chosen to host a Come Around Ironing party. In case you are wondering what that is, you agree to host a party and they send you the items you need to host it. In this case I received a Philips PerfectCare Steam Generator Iron, a Philips Easy 8 ironing board, some Funkin Cocktails mixers and some party bag extras for the guests including union jack tea towels and some clothes pegs. We had a great party and it is worth keeping an eye on the Come Around blog if you are interested in hosting a party in the future.
Anyway if you are reading this you are probably interested in knowing more about the Philips PerfectCare GC9230/02 Steam Generator Iron. If you know me you know that every Sunday I tackle an enormous ironing pile. As I work all week the ironing seems to build up in the corner of the kitchen into a pile that looks very much like Mount Everest. I was really looking forward to seeing if this iron would be up to the job.
When I first received the box I thought it was large and on opening the box I could see why. This is an enormous iron, much bigger than the normal iron I use. This is because it is a steam generator iron and it is in two parts. The base where you put the water and the iron itself. The actual iron itself is still bigger than my iron but not by much. The iron and base would have been too big to fit on my normal ironing board but I also received the Philips Easy 8 ironing board with the iron so that was not a problem.
To fill it with water you remove the bit at the front of the base and add water though the hole. It holds a lot more water than my normal iron which was great as I found that one refill did my whole ironing mountain and I did not have to keep refilling it. It holds 1.5 litres of water which apparently will allow you to iron non-stop for two hours.The side of the base has two slots for storing the cables away neatly. One side is for the electric cable and the other side is for the cable that brings the steam from the base into the iron which as you can see is much thicker. I was a bit worried that once I pulled the cables out I would not be able to fit them in again, but then went back in reasonably smoothly. This makes it easier to put the iron away.
To get started ironing all you need to do is to plug it in and press the on button at the back of the iron. The iron starts to heat up and you know it is ready as the top will start to glow blue instead of flashing. It heated up very quickly, it was only a couple of minutes.
I wasn’t sure how different a steam generator iron would be, after all my normal iron has steam. A steam generator iron however produces steam at a much higher pressure than a normal iron which removes the creases from the clothes more easily, even on really tough fabrics.
The iron will not produce steam until the button on the underside of the handle is pressed, at which time it gushes out in copious amounts flattening all the creases out of the clothes. I did find that sometimes I managed to press the button accidentally which made me jump a bit as the steam hissed out but over all it is very easy to use. You do get the occasional glugging noise while you use the iron which I think is the steam moving up the cable from the steam generator into the iron.
One feature that I really liked about this iron is that it does not have a temperature setting. It magically knows what you are ironing and adjusts the temperature to suit the fabric. You can work though a pile of ironing and not have to worry about mixing fabrics, you can iron a viscose top directly after a pair of jeans and they will be ironed perfectly. Another very useful feature is that you can leave it standing on delicate fabrics for five minutes and it will not burn the fabric. It is very easy to get distracted and leave the iron down for a minute, especially when you have children. I tried this out, dubiously, on an old silk scarf and was amazed to find that it did really work. There were no marks on the fabric and it did not shrivel or burst into flame.
The one thing that I have not tried yet is the “easy-de-calc”. This tells you when the water tank is due for cleaning and you then use this to clean it in an operation which takes a minute. I like the idea of the automatic reminder as this is something I would easily forget.
I loved this iron, it was very easy to use and made short work of my ironing pile. It actually did a much better job that my ordinary steam iron and it was easier to use. It is bulky however and you will need a bigger ironing board so if you are short on storage space this may not be a good option. The Philips PerfectCare GC9230/02 Steam Generator Iron is RRP £250 so it is not cheap but it has a 2-year guarantee and a 30-day money-back-guarantee.
If you buy a PerfectCare iron before 30th June 2012 , register its barcode and date of purchase here, along with your contact details and you’ll receive a 50% off Amazon voucher for the new Philips Easy 8 ironing board, priced at £100. The new Philips Easy 8 ironing board incorporates 8 clever solutions for truly easy ironing, including a unique Shoulder Wing System and it works really well with this iron.
Disclosure : I received a Come Around party pack, including the steam generator iron, ironing board and a other goodies for guests in return for hosting an ironing party and giving an honest review of the iron.
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