Why You Should NEVER Use Tap Water in Your Steamer

Garment steamers are built to last, but they have to be taken care of.

You should never use tap water to steam your garments because the minerals present in the water, over time damage the heating metal which is inside the clothing steamer.

In some cases, the steamer may also develop calcification due to buildup. The process of calcification may lead to blockage on the inside of your steamer.

This will cause the steamer to spit steam irregularly instead of providing a smooth and constant flow. This shortens the life of the machine immensely.

Which is the best water to put into the garment steamer?

The answer is distilled water. Yes, distilled water is the number one choice for use in garment steamers.

Even the manufacturer of cloth steamers recommends consumers to use distilled water in their steamer for a longer life.

What is Distilled Water?


Distilled water is a kind of water that has been filtered to remove both minerals and impurities.

Basically, this is steam that was condensed back into water after boiling water. All the minerals and impurities that are not condensed into steam are left behind in the original tank.

Steam is the source of distilled water; therefore, minerals and impurities are not present in it. It is the ideal water for cloth steamers.

A common question I receive is, “Does my steamer need to be filled with distilled water?” As always, my answer is yes.

How to get distilled water?

Distilled is not at all hard to find, nor is it very expensive to buy. There are many different options for purchasing distilled water. Distilled water is available in bulk on almost every online retail store, including Amazon and Walmart stores. 

Buy Distilled Water from Amazon

You can also check out bottles of distilled water that are used for traveling purposes if you are a frequent traveler . This will not be cheap, but they offer really good quality distilled water. 

It is perfect for maintaining the health of your steamer and ensuring that it will have a long life. This water will remain fresh and pure, exactly how your steamer requires it to be. 

Best distilled water for travellers

You can consider using this one if you do not use the garment steamer regularly or bring it out only on a few special occasions. It is also great to use for portable steamers.

How to make distilled water at home?

The easiest way to get distilled water is to boil it yourself. It does not take a lot of time and gets the work done very efficiently. If you do not want to do it yourself, you can also use a water distilling machine to distill tap water on your own. 

H2O Labs Water Distiller

H2O Labs Water Distiller

There are various such products to choose from. One extremely popular distiller is the H2OLabs Water Distiller that does the job just at the press of a button. It has the best reviews from customers and is known to clean the water thoroughly. The machine is made of stainless steel, is well-built, and works amazingly well. 

Vevor Stainless Water Distiller

VEVOR Stainless Steel Water Distiller

Other than that, VEVOR stainless steel water distiller is also used by customers to distill water at home. It is pocket-friendly and works well. You could use such a home distilling machine to purify water yourself and then use it for your commercial garment steamer.

Some steam machines have an internal system that cleans water residue itself and prevents corrosion, but it is recommended to use purified water to get the best results. 

Other Considerable Options

Deionized water

A substitute for distilled water is deionized water. Deionized water is another kind of water that has been purified. It has been treated so that there are no ions in it. Water from the tap consists of negative as well as positive ions. You may know that positive ions include iron, calcium, and aluminum, while nitrates, chlorides, and sulfates are negative ions.

To make it deionized, the tap water is put through a filtration process in which the ions are filtered out using charged resin materials. These spherical resins attract the ions through their charge and separate them, leaving the water completely free of positive and negative ions. Now, this water might still be harmful to the streamer because it still contains minerals.

Demineralized water

Demineralized water is the one that has been filtered of charged ions, but all the uncharged particles remain in it. A different process is used to filter the ions to make demineralized water.

Even though it has some impurities, you can use this water for your garment steamer as it is a better choice than tap water which is too damaging. 

Can I use filtered water in garment steamers?

Filtered water has been treated and put through filtration to remove substances like impurities, bacteria, harmful chemicals, and some amount of minerals. Filtered water is safe to drink and use for consumption, but it is still damaging for your steamer as it has the minerals that will cause build-up within the machine.

So for this reason I will not recommend you to use filtered water in your steamer. The same goes for bottled drinking water, which is often filtered as well.

About Me


Hey there, friend! I’m Delaney, the girl behind BestSteamerGuide.com, a blog solely forced on wrinkle free clothing. 

I’m so thrilled you stopped by!

Apart from this, I enjoy working to create a beautiful and thriving home, life, as well as helping others do the same.

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4 thoughts on “Why you should NEVER use tap water in your steamer”

  1. Really great tip for beginners, It is wiser to use distilled water which has zero particulates in it. I guess it depends on the known quality of your tap water.

  2. I am using distilled water for my steamer from last 4 years. I had zero issues till date and recommend this to everyone.. Awesome tips..

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