Black+Decker D3030 Allure Review
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Black+Decker D3030 Allure
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|Pros||Powerful steam burst, pointed nose for precision, budget-friendly||Good shape for detailing, great temperature, excellent ironing performance, retractable cord||Efficiently reduces wrinkles, misty water spray, 400+ steam holes, retractable cord||Inexpensive, portable||Small, budget-friendly|
|Cons||Minimal steam output, lack of steam holes on soleplate||Tank opening is small, doesn't spray very far||Filling the water tank could be easier||Lacking in power, underwhelming ironing performance||Lacks power, no steam burst, no water spray|
|Bottom Line||A high-performing iron equipped with a powerful steam burst and the ability to tackle most fabrics and most wrinkles||A top-scoring product with excellent performance, heat output, and usability for less than you might expect||An above-average steam iron with a conveniently retractable chord and an ergonomic soleplate that can tackle most wrinkles||A steam iron that is perfect for travel but is too weak for regular chores at home||This compact steam iron acts as a budget-friendly travel companion but lacks the power for daily use|
|Rating Categories||Black+Decker D3030...||Rowenta DW2459 Access||CHI Steam Titanium||Sunbeam Hot-2-Trot||Steamfast SF-717 Mini|
|Ironing Performance (35%)|
|Steam Output (25%)|
|Ease of Use (25%)|
|Specs||Black+Decker D3030...||Rowenta DW2459 Access||CHI Steam Titanium||Sunbeam Hot-2-Trot||Steamfast SF-717 Mini|
|Weight||3.4 lbs||3.1 lbs||3 lbs||1.3 lbs||3.7 lbs|
|Soleplate Material||Stainless Steel||Stainless Steel||Stainless Steel||Non-Stick||Stainless Steel|
|Measured Steam Output (from 5 min test)||44 g||53 g||110 g||12 g||20 g|
|Average Temperature (after 5 min of heating)||338 °F||362 °F||304 °F||332 °F||288 °F|
Our Analysis and Test Results
The Black+Decker D3030 Allure is a high-performing steam iron at a price that has us picking our jaws up off the floor. Its performance is impressive across the board, except for steam output. Read on to understand why we fell in love with the Allure.
We took the time to test out each steam iron on a slew of different fabrics. From cotton to silk, the Allure succeeds with flying colors, requiring a maximum of three passes to eradicate every last wrinkle, regardless of how deeply set.
The Allure smooths out cotton and linen wrinkles with two or fewer passes and without the need for additional steam. While most of our favorite steam irons perform well on both linen and cotton, the Allure made things even easier.
The Allure knocked it out of the park with more difficult fabrics like silk and synthetics. Unlike many competitors, this iron doesn't need more than three passes to smooth out every last wrinkle. Most of the other options we tested struggled with deep wrinkles, like creases from folding, specifically on silk fabric. The Allure, on the other hand, has no issue here. Both silk and synthetic fabrics, like polyester and nylon, require a large amount of steam, which has the potential to leave the garment wet, but since this iron runs hot, it leaves your garment dry and ready to wear within seconds.
We tested each iron with various fabrics, but we also made sure to get a good sense of their technical ability. We spent time navigating around buttons and working with collars, and it's no surprise that the Allure performed stunningly here. The tapered nose makes precision work an absolute pleasure. The water spray also comes out in a fine mist that helps release deep-set wrinkles by dampening the fabric without soaking it. On top of all that, the steam burst is extremely powerful, emitting a large amount at an efficient temperature. Generally speaking, there isn't much we can complain about regarding the Allure's ironing performance.
While the steam burst is extremely liberal, the general steam output of the D3030 Allure is nothing to write home about. We measured how much steam was being emitted from each iron over one minute, and the Allure performs just below average compared to the others in our test suite.
Unfortunately, the Allure only emits 22 grams of steam per minute while ironing — some models in our steam iron review emit over three times that amount. The advantage of a steam iron over a dry iron is that moisture helps remove stubborn wrinkles more efficiently, which this model has no issue doing. However, it is possible that with a little extra steam output per minute, it would release the harder to relieve wrinkles on fabrics like silk and polyester faster.
We also considered the number of steam holes each soleplate is equipped with during our steam output testing. Generally speaking, the more holes, the better — unfortunately, the Allure only has 23. That being said, they are strategically placed around the entire perimeter, which helps with distribution.
Accompanying every hole is a small concave strip that allows the steam to spread further before it's released out the sides. While there is plenty of room for improvement here, the lack of steam output and steam holes do not seem to affect the efficiency of this model.
Ease of Use
Our ease of use testing is centered around the following elements: the cord design, general handling, and simplicity of filling. The Allure performs just above average in each of these departments.
The eight-foot cord is long enough for most situations, but another foot would go a long way. The iron has a nice curve to the base, below the soleplate, where you can securely wrap the cord, but we prefer a retractable one.
The handle is more rectangular than cylindrical, which we found less comfortable. It is made of a matte-finished material that grips nicely, and you can hold it anywhere you like without the controls getting in the way.
The ergonomic soleplate is also great for precise detail work. The large hole makes filling somewhat easy, but the lid does not open all the way, which makes aiming difficult.
A steam iron wouldn't be much of an iron without heat, which takes us to our fourth and final metric — heating. We measured the maximum temperature of each iron after five minutes and how consistently the soleplate distributes the heat. Overall the Allure does very well in this category.
The average heat of the soleplate on the Allure was roughly 338 degrees Fahrenheit after five minutes. This is quite hot compared to the average temperature of the other models we tested.
We were also pleasantly surprised by the consistency of the temperature across the soleplate. While none of the steam irons we tested provided a completely even soleplate, the Allure's warmest spot, the top, was only 50 degrees warmer than its coolest spot, the bottom.
Should You Buy the Black+Decker D3030 Allure?
The Black+Decker D3030 Allure offers stellar ironing performance, an exceptional steam burst, and a misty water spray. It will leave your garments dry and wrinkle-free. While it may not average a high steam output per minute, it's an excellent value. It is not the least expensive in our test suite, but it costs a fraction of the price of the top-of-the-line steam irons and performs almost as well.
What Other Steam Irons Should You Consider?
Whether you occasionally like to iron your nice shirts for work or you like every garment, sheet, and pillowcase ironed post-wash, the Black+Decker Allure is a great option. This steam iron was out-performed by a few models, but most of them cost a whole lot more. If you want to improve upon the steam output of the Allure without spending quite as much, the CHI Steam Titanium is an excellent intermediate option.
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