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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 12 July 2013
I bought this steam generator when our previous Tefal unit developed a terminal problem. We have been impressed by the Tefal steam generator range and would not be without one now.

So, what do we like about it it?

1. The unit feels reasonably sturdy and robust with the 'fold over' protect hood to cover up the iron and hold it place when not in use. The handle seems sufficient to carry the weight of the unit. It is at the larger end of the size range for these products, but that is reflected in its' steam generation capacity and ability to remove the most stubborn of creases. (5/5)
2. It has a power cord rewind and storage facility (more on this later). 3/5)
3. There is storage for the power and steam supply cord to the iron itself which at ~1.75m seems reasonable in length. (5/5)
4. The extra steam boost function is great for those stubborn creases. (5/5)
5. There is an auto shut off if not used for a period of time. Sensible, but if you plan use the iron without steam for a while (i.e the laundry is damp enough to not require steam) you need to use the odd shot of steam to prevent the cut off actuating.(4/5)
6. This is an excellent unit for everyday ironing tasks, or those marathon sessions when you have let the ironing basket build up to overflowing. Has proved brilliant for the vertical steaming of work suits that are dry clean only and need 'refreshing' between trips to the dry cleaners. Also, it has proved gentle enough for delicate blouses. We have to say that creases just seem to disappear with little physical effort. It has proved great for the fiddly areas like sleeves and trouser legs. There seems to be no risk of 'scorch' or 'shine' to the fabric (assuming that you have read the manual and got the steam/temperature settings right!!) (5/5)
7. The catalytic, self clean and easy glide sole plate has performed well, but remember to avoid metallic or abrasive surfaces that could damage the coating. Generally, this needs no more than a wipe off with a damp cloth to bring it back to pristine condition. (5/5)

So - What's not to like?

1. The rewind mechanism is not brilliant on the power cord, a persistent failing in our experience, on all Tefal products and I suspect it will not prove to be reliable in the long run. It is not smooth and often needs 'encouragement' to rewind the power cord completely. So, a nice to have, but does not instil confidence. Also, the power lead is maybe a little bit on the short side, at 1.75m
2.The 'biggie' for us is that despite the Tefal claims, there is still a real issue with scaling/calcing and the ejection of brown scaly deposits when using the product. This is despite the claims of Tefal for their new 'anti-calcing' system. We live in a medium hard water area, but often seem to have problems with scaling deposits being ejected onto clothes when steam ironing. This has been a continual problem for us, when using steam generators and we rather naively hoped that things would improve with this model . We tried following the instructions in the manual, but kept on getting the problem and the anti-calc warning lamp only came on well after we had encountered an issue, duh?? - A bit late, as the garment had already had to go back in the wash to remove the horrible brown scale marks!!
I did start rinsing out the boiler with cold water after a few uses and things got better, as I was amazed at the amount of scale that came out of the unit. It was just as much as we had found on previous models, so where was the improvement I wondered??
I contacted Tefal to complain about the issue and they did supply me with some more advice on how to improve things further (just a damn shame that they had not thought to include this in the manual in the first place!!) We have encountered far fewer problems since, but we seem to need to clean the unit on a far more regular basis and more thoroughly than I would have expected. Oh, and do not even think of using proper distilled water in this unit - according to Tefal it has not been designed to cope with this and will do more harm than good - go figure that one!!

The overarching view of this product is that it is very good, but has a couple of issues that mean 4* is as good as this review gets. If it was not for the 'high maintenance' issue of having to do a thorough clean / descale after every couple of uses, we could probably ignore the power cord rewind point and give it 5*.
22 comments|46 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 13 August 2014
Excellent steam generator, AWESOME amazon service.
We've had a few steam generators, typically bought in local stores around 200 euros each. None survived longer than 2 years because we live in an area with really hard water. Thus I will be updating this review when this one finally fails to let you know how long it lasted..
I just bought this for the wife, it's VERY powerful, it looks sturdy and the plastic cover on top can be put on even if the iron is hot ( although I assume you do have to switch it off at least) so it's a nice safety feature for kids. You have to press a button and pull at the same time so I wouldn't consider it completely child proof, but not a child's play to open either.
The amount of steam, and the pressure of the steam is phenomenal, wife is VERY pleased, cuts down ironing time to basically a single quick pass over each spot.
Now to calc. I bought this because I think this is the best technology for all that I had reviewed. I owned the ones with the replaceable filter, I've researched, the newer ones like the Bosch that use similar but not the same tech as tefal and I went to a store and got my hands on a few different brands, testing to see how you remove calc. It was clear that Tefal has the best technology but that's too long a story to explain why I reached that conclusion here.
Now, if you also live in a hard tap water area, keep in mind that you shouldn't fill this machine ( or any steam generator, ANY regardless of what the manufacturer says) with just hard tap water. You should mix it at about 50-50 with distilled or de-ionized water (Tefal mentions this in the manual). This will significantly increase the longevity of the machine, and given it's cost and the cost of distilled water, you'll save a lot of money in the long run. WORD OF WARNING. DO NOT USE 100% DISTILLED WATER. 50-50 is good for steam generators because there's half the calc but without the calc distilled water would cause it to evaporate all at the same time, resulting in a very steep pressure gradient, the heater won't stop quickly enough, pressure will be build beyond manageable levels, and there goes the iron. This holds for all steam irons. I'm including this explanation because while reading reviews of multiple steam irons here, especially of cheaper brands, people complain when their generators break even though they used distilled water. Distilled, is good to mix, NEVER alone. Google super heating water in microwave and you'll understand why.
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VINE VOICEon 10 September 2012
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I already had one of Tefal's steam irons

But when the opportunity to get an updated model which promised to be more powerful and yet more efficient came along I jumped at it.

First things first this iron is big but its size, the downside is that for just doing the odd item it is big and cumbersome, but on those days when you have a few weeks worth of ironing to do it is excellent as it eliminates the need to have repeat trips to the tap or a jug of water near to you which I often used to knock all over the washing.

In comparison to the older Tefal I had this iron is the same length and width as the GV8360 but is higher due to the main visible design difference, the protective hood and carry handle. The GV8360 had a small lock at the front that you pulled up and then carried the whole thing by the irons handle which is quick and convenient.

The GV9461 has a dedicated handle that pulls up a protective cover over the entire iron. I'm not really too sure if the intention of this was to secure the iron more for carrying or to prevent access to the iron when it was hot. But it certainly does feel more secure in your hand and I had no doubt the bottom would stay in place in opposition to the GV8360 where I was always slightly worried that the lock might slip off and the base would drop.

Pulling the handle into place is easy just pull backwards and it automatically locks into place. To release you have to press a button on the left hand side and push the handle back to the front of the base.

I suppose the positive point of this is that a hot iron is shielded from little inquisitive fingers but the downside is that you can't quickly pick the entire thing up to move it unless the handle is locked in place and the height of the unit is over 2" more than the GV8360 making storage a little more difficult.

However the main thing that I wasn't so keen on with the carry handle/cover is that when the shield is retracted it covers over the water tank meaning the handle has to be pulled into is carry position before you can remove the tank. Ok not a big problem I grant you but because the tank is so large I often don't check to fill it up before starting ironing and found this feature an unnecessary inconvenience for the sake of protecting against potential burns that never ever arose on the older Tefal.

On opening the box my familiarity with the GV8360 meant I didn't even need to refer to the manual to get going. The iron is fully assembled and simple needs plugging in, water in the tank and off you go. The plug conveniently retracts into the base for storage and the hose between the base and iron can loop through a hole round the front.

In comparison to the GV8360 I felt you could easily tell the steam was much more powerful and easily took the most stubborn creases out of clothes with minimal overspray.

The glide of the iron base was silky smooth and on my first use I breezed through over 30 items in no time at all.

Thankfully this iron retains the highly useful anti-scale feature on the side of the base that warns you when your product needs de-scaling which is achieve by simply twisting and removing the clear ended insert and cleaning it with nothing more than a soft scouring pad and hot soapy water.

Where this iron does differ is on the steam dial on the rear of the iron where there is now what seems to be the obligatory "eco mode". From what I can see this seems to just be the low power steam mode of the old GV8360 however Tefal claim it uses upto 20% less energy.

Overall this isn't much of a step up from the GV8360 but its still a fantastic iron - recommended.
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Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Having worked in the electrical trade for over 20 years I was always impressed with the specifications of this type of iron.

When in the trade I used to demo a similar concept made by Polti, which was a steam iron that attached to a Stem generator, they were brilliant but a pain to set up as you need to connect the steam generator first wait 20 minutes for it to heat up and it fast ran out of water which again was another slow process refilling, plus it was all very expensive.

I had fancied one of these for along time, but like a lot of people you tend to wait until your old iron breaks before you replace it.
I remember when they first came out they were large and heavy so was looking forward to see how they had improved.

First impressions are very good, smaller than I expected.
It has a detachable water tank which holds 1.8 litres of water which is well above average removable tank which makes filling a doddle

Its performance is fantastic, you have control over the steam and also have a hot shot of steam which works very well.

The Ultracord system is simple but very cleaver and effective it prevents the cable being anywhere near the ironing.

It has Tefal's anti scale collector, I live in North Wales which has very soft water and no lime scale so can't confirm how well it works, its easy to remove.

Does the Tefal make Ironing more enjoyable, probably not, but It does make it easier and faster.

This is an extremely well made product that works extremely well, I recommend that you don't wait for your old iron to break but buy one of these they are brilliant.
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Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
This is a very futuristic looking well-made iron, very space-age in a smoky purple and white. Unlike the other Tefal steam generator irons which clip the iron to the base and use the iron handle for carrying, this has a locking domed cover which covers the whole iron and has its own carrying handle, this prevents anyone from touching the hot iron as you can put it away hot.
It has a large 1.8 litre water tank which takes ordinary tap-water and is fast to become operational, around 2 minutes. A red light on the unit tells you when the tank needs refilling. Ironing may not be one of life's most enjoyable pastimes but at least with this it is quick, probably halving the time it used to take. The iron is easy to use, I'm left-handed and I have no problem, the sole-plate of the iron just glides over the fabric and there is so much steam that I can put shirts on the hanger and blast them with steam using the turbo button and the creases just fall out!
The iron has an eco mode which reduces the amount of steam; I've not tried it as the ironing is quicker anyway; the iron will also switch to a standby mode if it isn't used for about 8 minutes.
Overall a stylish iron which irons as well as it looks.
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on 17 February 2013
I have use many different steam generators over the last 15 years, quite simply this is the lightest, easiest, safest and best yet.
Light: even after using it for more than an hour it is effortless
Easy: most of the settings are generous to fabrics both above and below the scale (cotton to silk), meaning it is virtually foolproof (even my husband can use it!) Also within the standard range it uses ECO (20% less electric)
Safe: the cover can be moved over the iron to protect small inquisitive children from the iron, when on and in use and when cooling down after use.
Best: self cleaning (base plate) and removes scale as a solid (no flushing or dismantling)
Has a button for retracting the electric cable after use (like a vacuum cleaner) and section for storing the steam hose to keep it tidy.
Best of all is that when you finished you simply switch off (surpisingly most irons don't have an "off" switch on the iron itself), slide the cover over, retract /tidy both cables, then pick up the robust handle and move to safe place.
I agree the price is high for a domestic product but the combinations of child safety, simplicity, rapid ironing and practicality are important to us
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on 8 October 2014
To start with the item was working fine. As soon as the year passed it started making a loud noise every time switched on and water powering our out of the Iron. Just to warn people Southern Electric does not apply to your response they have standard copy and paste to say your item has gone faulty and expired and the number to call. I have called the number its going to cost 70.00 to repair . I rather stick in the bin
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on 11 July 2013
Having had a Tefal for 10 years+ and loved it to pieces (very appropriate expression and not just said because I dropped it). This one, so far, lives up to my expectations. It is bigger and heavier than my previous one and boy! does it do the job!! Pleased I went for a higher spec model. I have had this a few days but I'm delighted with it so far. Word of caution! Watch out for fingers 'til you get used to it as the heat and steam are super-powerful (hotter than my previous one).
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on 21 December 2012
Ordered on the Wednesday arrived on Friday i used it straight away I've had lots of irons over the years I've lost count - my main complaint is they just don't get hot enough and the ironing took hours with very good results. My last steam generator iron needed to be cleaned after 10 times of using bit of a chore but if you missed it your clothes would be marked with lime scale.So based on 'Which' and amazon reviews I purchased this one. So glad i did as i love it!!
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on 11 December 2012
Original review
I've had several different steam generators, the last one being a DeLonghi which only lasted 18 months. This Tefal is more substancial and (I hope) more durable.

Added 6 June 2013
The machine stopped working last month. For some reason, the sole plate wasn't getting hot. I rang Tefal. I thought there might be a problem having purchased this through Amazon, but once I'd given the serial number they were very helpful and they arranged for the generator to be collected, repaired and returned.
I've only used it a few times since, but it now works fine.
I read a forum online which suggested using a vinegar mix to clean the iron, but as this is not recommended by the manufacturer, I was reluctant to try it.
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