With its powerful ability to remove stubborn wrinkles from most fabrics and impressive steam output, the Rowenta DW9280 SteamForce lives up to its name. Cotton and linen are wrinkle-free within seconds, though silk and polyester require a little elbow grease and some additional steam. The more-than-sufficient amount of steam escapes through 400 steam holes on an ergonomically shaped soleplate whose nose is pointed for extreme agility. While the SteamForce may be a little expensive compared to other irons, it consistently gets the job done and, in our opinion, is a worthy addition to any household.Editor's Note: We updated this review for the Rowenta DW9280 SteamForce on April 21, 2022, with a closer look at value and suggestions for other products that may better suit your needs and budget.
Rowenta DW9280 SteamForce Review
Pros: Amazing steam output, precise soleplate nose, steam holes are evenly distributed and plentiful
Cons: Very expensive, short cord, heavy
Compare to Similar Products
Rowenta DW9280 SteamForce
$149.95 at Amazon
$42.72 at Amazon
|Check Price at Amazon||$40 List||$25 List|
$20.30 at Amazon
|Pros||Amazing steam output, precise soleplate nose, steam holes are evenly distributed and plentiful||Powerful steam burst, pointed nose for precision, budget-friendly||Efficiently reduces wrinkles, misty water spray, 400+ steam holes, retractable cord||High heat, inexpensive||Inexpensive, portable|
|Cons||Very expensive, short cord, heavy||Minimal steam output, lack of steam holes on soleplate||Filling the water tank could be easier||Poor steam output, not very maneuverable, generally cheap performance||Lacking in power, underwhelming ironing performance|
|Bottom Line||A powerful steam iron equipped with out-of-this-world steam output, achieving high-end quality but for a top-tier price||A high-performing iron equipped with a powerful steam burst and the ability to tackle most fabrics and most wrinkles||An above-average steam iron with a conveniently retractable chord and an ergonomic soleplate that can tackle most wrinkles||Low price and a convenient retractable cord help to make up for mediocre steam output||A steam iron that is perfect for travel but is too weak for regular chores at home|
|Rating Categories||Rowenta DW9280 Stea...||Black+Decker D3030...||CHI Steam Titanium||Sunbeam Steam Master||Sunbeam Hot-2-Trot|
|Ironing Performance (35%)|
|Steam Output (25%)|
|Ease of Use (25%)|
|Specs||Rowenta DW9280 Stea...||Black+Decker D3030...||CHI Steam Titanium||Sunbeam Steam Master||Sunbeam Hot-2-Trot|
|Weight||3.85 lbs||1.9 lbs||2.9 lbs||3 lbs||1.3 lbs|
|Soleplate Material||Stainless Steel||Stainless Steel||Titanium Infused Ceramic||Stainless Steel||Non-Stick|
|Measured Steam Output||69 g/min||22 g/min||55 g/min||20 g/min||6 g/min|
|Temperature After 5 Minutes of Heating||304 °F||337.6 °F||304 °F||359 °F||332 °F|
Our Analysis and Test Results
This steam iron is a high-performing option across the board. The ironing performance and steam output are to die for, and ease of use and heating isn't too shabby either. Read on to learn why we love the Rowenta SteamForce.
During our hands-on testing, we spent ample time ironing many different fabric styles on the various settings provided by each steam iron. The SteamForce blew us away with its ability to smooth out wrinkles and maneuver around obstacles regardless of the material we were working with.
We started with cotton and linen and were very pleased with the results. This iron glides easily, and neither material requires additional steam to relieve the garment of deep-set wrinkles. It takes one to two passes to remove every crinkle, crumple, and crease, regardless of how deep they appear.
Silk and synthetic materials require a little more coaxing, although the SteamForce does a wonderful job when measured up next to its competitors. Silk requires multiple steam bursts but leaves no trace of moisture behind. We did experience a few stubborn deep-set wrinkles, but a couple of swipes do the trick for the most part. The synthetic or polyester setting is also very impressive. We found that many of the other irons in our test suite don't get hot enough to remove stubborn creases from materials like polyester and nylon. While these materials require multiple steam bursts, the heat evaporates up additional moisture to ensure that no drops are left behind.
Not only did we test out each steam iron on different materials, but we did our fair share of detail work too. It was no surprise when the SteamForce crushed yet another test. The tapered nose and ergonomic soleplate are perfect for maneuvering around buttons, between pleats, and working with collars. The steam burst is plentiful and strong, and the water sprays out in a fine mist that adds moisture to the spot you're working on without completely soaking the garment.
A steam iron is simply a dry iron that emits hot moisture to help reduce wrinkles effectively and efficiently. If you are in the market for a steam iron, you probably want to ensure that the model you are purchasing gives off a generous amount of steam.
During our testing, we measured the number of grams of steam released over one minute and considered how it distributed that stream.
Calling this model the SteamForce was a risky move on Rowenta's part, but boy did they deliver. We have nothing negative to say regarding this metric. This model emits a whopping 69 grams of steam per minute, which is extremely impressive when stacked against competitors.
Not only does this iron release an impressive amount of steam, but it does so in a perfectly consistent way across 400 strategically placed steam holes on the soleplate.
Ease of Use
The SteamForce continued its reign with yet another high score earned in this metric. Here we paid special attention to the cord, general handling, and how easy each iron was to fill up with water.
The cord is the only characteristic we can complain about with this iron. While there is a nice convex curve on the iron base under the soleplate to securely wrap the cord, the cord is a full foot shorter than most of the other options in our test suite.
This may not seem like a big deal, but a seven-foot cord is short and can hinder the user's ability to iron larger items like bedsheets.
The soleplate shape and feel of the handle are both great. The spray trigger makes the handle feel more secure and comfortable, while the narrow nose of the soleplate provides some serious precision for working around obstacles like buttons or collars.
When filling the tank, we were impressed with the large funneled hole that guides water nicely into the reservoir. Smaller holes are easy to spill, and steam irons that lack some sort of tapered funnel require precise aim to avoid spillage.
While steam may be the key element for a steam iron, nothing would work correctly without the heat of the soleplate. In this metric, we paid attention to how quickly the soleplate heats up, whether or not that heat is distributed along the soleplate evenly, and whether or not the heat indicator light works as it should.
The SteamForce performs admirably, but there is a little room for improvement. The temperature average of the soleplate was 304 degrees Fahrenheit after five minutes, far from the hottest in our review. We also found that the soleplate had some variance in temperature. The top and middle measured 315 degrees Fahrenheit, while the bottom read 55 degrees cooler at 260 degrees Fahrenheit. This is not a deal-breaker, but it is worth noting.
The temperature indicator on the SteamForce is very informative. Not only does it light up when the iron is up to temp, but it has a different light for each setting. We love this feature.
Should You Buy the Rowenta SteamForce?
If you are looking for a high-performing machine and don't mind paying top dollar, look no further than the Rowenta DW9280 SteamForce. This steam iron hits all the important elements, from the impressive steam output to the tapered nose. It works wonders on fancy garments and bedsheets alike, leaving almost no wrinkles behind.
What Other Steam Irons Should You Consider?
The Rowenta SteamForce is not what we consider a price point model — in fact, it is one of the most expensive we tested. If you are looking for high-end performance at a budget-friendly price, consider the Black+Decker D3030 Allure. Or, if your clothing and climate require high steam output, the CHI Steam Titanium offers top-notch performance in this regard without carrying such a high price tag.
— Michelle Powell and Hayley Thomas
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