428 of 442 people found the following review helpful
I've been using this iron for about a month and I am absolutely delighted with it.
After reading the user guide (which appears to be generic and dependent on the user to sort out which of the possible options is included with their iron) to see if there was anything specific I needed to do before using it, the iron was plugged in and set to work.
The first thing of note is the water tank, which has see-through sides - so you can see your water level rather than having to swing the iron around and judge by the sloshing sound inside. It is 335mls in size, so you should not have to stop ironing as many times in order to refill it. Which brings me to my second item of note.
There are 6 steam settings on the iron; however, if you need to add more water to the tank you must make sure that the steam setting is at zero for your own safety. Obviously, the higher the steam setting the more water you will use, so being able to see the water level is important.
The steam is at a base power of 50g/min with a 170g/min steam boost. Not being technically minded I'm not sure about these figures but I can say it is powerful enough to steam velvet successfully.
Using the iron is easy. The controls are, thankfully, very straightforward. Once you have plugged it in and switched it on, you turned the control disc under the handle to the type of material that you are ironing and the temperature light will indicate when the iron has reached the correct heat.
If you need steam then you push the slider to the strength of continuous steam that you need, or press the button for a short burst of steam. You also have the ability to spray some water from the iron to aid with any stubborn creases.
The cable is 2.5 metres in length and gave me plenty of slack when I was using the iron.
The iron has a given weight of 1.6kg empty, but you need to keep in mind that with a full tank of water it will weigh more. In saying that this isn't the heaviest iron we have had.
It has a smooth annodilium (metal) soleplate is supposed to be scratch resistant, so zips, clasps, studs, etc, should not have an adverse effect on the irons life span.
There is also a 2 year warranty should anything go wrong.
The iron comes with an anti-drip facility, along with anti-scale and self-cleaning, this should help stop those horrid explosions of dirt that can emanate from old irons.
In my opinion this is a superb iron, easy to use and maintain.
I can see why this iron won the "Which?" award for the "Best Small Home Appliance 2011". It is well worth considering if you are looking for a new steam iron.
229 of 238 people found the following review helpful
Its funny everything I buy these days uses less energy; or is more efficient; except for my new Iron. A year ago I reviewed the previous Azur and was impressed by its steam generating ability and how much lighter it was than my considerably older iron. In 2011 the New GC4890 Azur uses 200 Watts more power taking it to 2600 Watts; which is almost a 10% increase over the previous model and a poke in the eye for mother earth. Having now used a more powerful Iron I am more convinced that having more power in your iron makes quite a big difference when using it. Its immediately noticeable in two places; it heats up very quickly and its able to generate an awful lot of steam without stopping. Both of these mean that the Iron is on power for less time so hopefully balances out the extra power required.
To my eyes the GC4890 Azur has a nicer design than the last model (and the black and silver colour scheme looked good.) The controls are clear and easy to read with bold red on black. I think the water tank is overly fiddly to use - there is a seal to stop it leaking back out and I don't think it opens far enough as the door gets in the way of the spout when you are filling the iron. The baseplate on my Iron is new so it glides really well as they all do last years ceramic base plate held up well; hopefully the new Anodilium baseplate is a step forward but only time will tell.
Once you have filled the tank you are ready to go; setting the temperature and plugging it in it heats up very quickly and seems able to generate steam in under a minute. One big step forward with this iron is you have more control over the temperature and there are clear indicators if the temperature is changing on the handle. As a man doing his own ironing it feels that the 80 or so steps on the temperature dial are overkill but its reassuring to know the control is there if you need it. There are also seven levels of continuous steam which for my shirts i left on the highest and it seems to work brilliantly. If you haven't used a continuous steam Iron; its a big step forward over heat only and steam blast on demand - especially if you are ironing a lot of cotton. The steam getting through layers of the fabric and makes ironing quicker and look better. When you need it you can still get a blast of steam to help with deep creases; or you hold the button down for long periods to get a longer stream of steam. The Azur works great on your ironing board each week; but the steam feature also works vertically and the Azur can steam curtains, or jackets where they hang if needed. If all this steam has you worried about your hard water; don't - the iron has a descaling feature which you run from time to time and clears out any deposits without the use of chemicals. In the 2010 azur this worked well; its still on the 2011 model and if its anything like the rest of the iron it should work as well if not better.
On my pure cotton work shirts a using a high continuous steam setting helped me breeze through them quicker than ever; the steam tip working well around the buttons - and the pulse blast of steam putting the creases right in my collars. Compared to last years iron; the Azur has a nicer grip with a rubberised upper surface where you do most of the work. One downside to the continuous steam in last years model was I felt you had to replenish the tank regularly; this is still the case - though being able to change the steam settings more easily seems to keep the iron going for longer before refilling.
Its an incremental advance over the last model; but the extra power and control make it a lot easier and quicker to get through your ironing.
179 of 189 people found the following review helpful
on 4 March 2013
This review is from someone who used to hate ironing! Really hate it. I always had Tefal irons before and more top of the range so not cheap. Dropped the last one, broke the bottom moulding so the hunt for a new one started. Was going to replace with yet another Tefal but after reading reviews on this one, decided to give it a go.
Took a long time to take a chance (let's face it, that's what we do after reading the reviews!) on the Philips Azur, but it really is good.
First the bad points (what iron could be perfect when you hate ironing?). I was surprised that so few reviewers on here mentioned the noise the iron makes. Maybe their old irons were the same (the Tefals were never noisy)? The Azur is fine when horizontal ie ironing, but when it goes upright there is a loud sizzling/steaming/crackling sound, presumably when the water remaining inside hits the metal plate. It doesn't last for long though, but it does happen every time the iron is placed upright. This really annoyed me at first, but the Azur irons so well that I have to forgive it this irritation.
Another oddity is the handle which feels slightly oily even though there is no oil on it.
The other major problem (as many other reviewers have noted) is the red on black for the heat dial/controls. If your eyesight isn't what it used to be then watch out, you really will find it hard to see the dial settings. Not a problem for me as I iron most items at the same temperature so don't need to change it that often.
Iron reaches a good temperature. Haven't needed to put it on top setting yet and advise starting low until you get a feel for the thermostat on it.
Good length of heavy cable. Some reviewers don't seem to like this. I don't find it gets in the way at all.
Iron plate is a good shape, gets into all those angles.
Would I buy it again? Yes, without a doubt. I used to hate ironing (specially cotton shirts) but this makes the job so much easier. If you have the right tool for the job, it makes the project so much easier and enjoyable..... although I still don't like ironing, this great iron has made ironing a little less of a chore.
Price at the moment on Amazon at £39.99 is the best I have seen..
I dropped it one star simply because of the irritating steam noise.
If I have helped you make up your mind about the iron please click on the 'was this helpful to you' review button. Thanks and happy ironing!
29 of 31 people found the following review helpful
We purchased this iron to replace our 8 year old iron that we'd kept for far too long. We read a lot of reviews and made a lot of comparisons and decided this would be best for our budget and needs. I've uploaded some images of the iron to hopefully help give an idea of its size and look.
Having had the iron for 12 months now it's due a review as it's been fantastic (or so I'm told by my wife).
The iron is very easy to use straight out of the box and gives fantastic and quick ironing results.
Things that we like about this iron:
-It heats up very quickly, even to the maximum temperature setting
-The steam function never leaks. My wife uses the steam function a lot, and the iron always produces decent steam (i.e. no water comes out).
-The iron is easy to clean (with a `calc clean' function, explained below)
-The iron has a good length of power cord for our needs, approx. 2.5m when laid out
-The iron is light (1.6kg)
-The iron is noticeably smooth on all fabrics
All of the above really have helped to speed up the chore of ironing for my wife and make it a little (just a little!) more pleasurable.
My wife doesn't tend to use the spray and steam boost buttons much that are available since the iron gets so much hotter than our previous one, she doesn't feel the need to use them much. But good to know they are there.
Our only quibble is that after only 12 months there is a slight stain on the iron plate that we cannot get rid of (as we're worried about using harsh chemicals or abrasive cloths on this surface). The iron still works exceptionally well despite this stain, and hasn't come off on any of our clothes. Just a little annoying that it's there.
So all in all a great iron that is light, easy to use and produces noticeably better ironing results than any other iron we've used.
And finally for those interested a note on how to clean the iron (which is wonderfully easy):
The calc clean function appears to keep our iron free of limescale. The manual says you are meant to do it every two weeks but we probably clean ours once every other month, but all seems fine. You simply put the steam function to zero, fill the iron tank with water, set the temperature to max. Plug the iron in as you would normally then when the heat light goes out hold your iron over the sink and hold the `calc clean' button on the side of the iron. This can create a lot of steam as water flows out of the soleplate but it really does remove all flakes etc that have built up in the iron.
104 of 113 people found the following review helpful
The thing about Philips Azur irons is that they tend to be a bit on the big/heavy side, and that has pros as well as cons.
On the pro side, a bit of heft, coupled with a super glide sole plate means that you use less effort to just push it over the creases. In tests we did, we had some overly dried shirts and chinos and the Azur made mincemeat of all of the creases ... there is steam a-plenty on tap, and with a decent reservoir of water, enough for a good 30 mins of ironing (who wants to do more than that anyway). We also tried it on some more complicated pleated material and again, the Azur rose to the occasion ... but it also highlighted one of the cons.
If you are gliding over creases the heft is useful, if you are doing more complicated stuff, having to constantly lift the iron, then the weight becomes more noticeable ... at about 1.8KG with some water on board it feels heavy at the end of an ironing pile.
I am not a great fan of red on black print on the dial ... I find it a pretty challenging combination to read, so would have preferred white on black (but I am going for an eye test later ... maybe it is just me). I do like the silicon dial, It moves very freely, and hopefully should not suffer the fate of old irons with plastic dials that used to stick.
I have pretty big hands, and my wife has quite small hands, we both find the soft grip handle quite comfortable. It is too early to see how the de-calc function works, but we have had Philips irons in the past and they have worked fine.
All in all, a good basic workman like iron that should give years of service.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
I bought this iron some time ago off the strength of its reviews on Amazon as well as its standing on Which magazine as their 'Best steam iron'. So many plaudits can't be wrong?
As it happens, this has turned out to be a great iron. Only my second personally procured iron, the first being a mid-range Philips iron which didn't survive a house move. I figured I would spend a bit more to see if it could make the chore a little easier.
There are some great features on this iron. The cable length is 2.5m which helps free up some movement and that extra 0.5m really does make a difference. The soleplate is listed as 'anoldilium' but in layman's terms, just take that as 'really good'. I would say it is a slight cut above a ceramic soleplate but that is my opinion. It is also lightly tapered in at the tip which helps entry into shirt cuffs. The iron heats up quickly and the steam output is powerful and consistent. It is not the lightest of irons, but in use its weight isn't too noticeable.
I do have one bug-bear with it though, and that is with the temperature control dial. There is a raised indicator which I keep catching my fingers on and over the past year and has become something of an annoyance.
This iron was on offer at Amazon when I purchased it, sneaking just under the £40.00 mark so I got it at a good price. Its current price of c. £47 makes it only fair value for money in my book. The £40-50 bracket is quite hotly contested and there are some good offerings from the other main brands, so you would be wise to have a look at some of the competition to see how this stacks up and it would be beneficial to man-handle some alternatives if at all possible before committing to a purchase, as the ergonomics, comfort and weight will be a factor at this price which would be difficult to assess by description alone.
Were it a little cheaper at present and slightly more ergonomic for my own needs, I'd have given it a 5, but for me it just loses out.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 1 September 2015
Looking for a great iron, but not sure what you want? As the person who irons most in the house, I wanted an iron which was not only light, but also had a bunch of options. This iron fits the bill. It's not too expensive, it has some great features, like the non drip, the auto shut off, vertical steam and an anodilium sole plate to name but a few.
The sole plate is super smooth, this and the amount of steam you get make ironing easy work. It glides effortlessly, even when topped up with water. I have never tried the vertical steaming although this is possible, I will have to give a try at some point. There were plenty of times before where I would have to answer the door or do something else whilst I was ironing, the auto shut off feature has really helped out. It recognises that there has been no movement for a short period of time, and switches itself off. The cable is only 2.5m, I know it seems like a lot, for me it's enough. I only mention it so you the readers will know. Some people like a 3m cord. My ironing happens right next to a plug socket, so 2.5m is plenty for me.
The only thing is, that if you use it a lot, the rubber on the handle does start to peel. This can look a little unsightly as the rest of the iron stays looking quick swish. There's nothing you can do to stop that though. That was the only problem I found with this iron.
13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on 2 October 2013
Bought this 1 month ago and it is already broken.
Lots of dripping, really unusable. Will have to take it to repair.
This was my 3rd Philips steam iron and sad to say it, the last one I will ever buy.
Philips is great, but not in irons.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 5 March 2015
I bought this item in December 2013 and had to replace in May 2014 as it suddenly stopped working. I was pleased very the convenience to return the item. However 9 months later, I face exactly the same issue again. Unfortunately, the return window was closed in June 2014 so I cannot return it another time. I was so frustrated and disappointed! Having two items (same model) broken within less than a year is definitely a bad customer experience, especially given the price and the brand of this product. I am also very upset with the return policy as for me, as long as the manufacturer sends you a new item, the guarantee should be extended. Don't buy this product and be very careful with the return policy!
27 of 30 people found the following review helpful
I'm not a big fan of ironing but this iron makes it almost a pleasure or at least not as much of a chore. The build quality is very good and it feels nice and solid in your hand and glides over the clothes with ease and it looks really nice and sleek. I don't normally need to use the extra steam settings as I'm normally just ironing shirts however after using it on everything from collars to other more stubborn creases the different levels of steam etc that you can employ is excellent.
All in all a really good product which I would definately recommend to anyone after a great iron. Just as an additional comment as a left-hander I sometimes struggle with irons and ironing boards but no such problems here it's been the best iron I have owned from a left-handed perspective.