In our humble opinion, steam is one of the best features to have in a dryer. A dryer with steam cycles can help you to refresh your summer wardrobe at the end of winter, get the wrinkles out of your premium tops and pants for a special dinner, or smooth away creases in a load of freshly washed clothes that sat in the dryer for too long.
Finding a dryer that meets all of your needs and has a steam cycle can be a little challenging, but we’re here to help. Based on our findings, these are some of the best steam dryers you can get online right now.
The recommendations in this guide are based on thorough product and market research by our team of expert product reviewers. The picks are based on examining user reviews, product specifications, and, in some limited cases, our experience with the specific products named.
Due to supply chain challenges and soaring demand, there is widespread unavailability of home appliances and long wait times for delivery of backordered product. If you're a consumer in need of a washer or dryer, here are the best places to buy in-stock appliances right now.
What You Should Know About Dryers With Steam!
Steam dryers work by adding a steam cycle to a regular clothes dryer. The steam reduces wrinkles, so that you have to spend less time ironing your clothes. These dryers still use hot air to dry clothes. The only difference is that you also get a water hookup for adding steam. The fine mist of steam makes your clothes look more fresh and pressed after you wash and dry them.
This is half of what clothes irons do. Irons remove wrinkles using the iron’s weight, and with steam. Most fabric is thermoplastic. That means at high temperatures, the fabric can easily change shape. Once it cools down, the fabric retains that new shape.
So the fabric in your clothes takes on a new shape (gets wrinkled) when it stays in a crumpled position for more than a day (say, sitting in a laundry hamper). But the steam from the iron relaxes the fabric, and the weight of the iron squishes the fabric flat again. When your fabric cools down post-ironing, it’s back to its pre-wrinkled state.
With a steam dryer, you’re getting one of the two functions of a clothes iron. Steam drying relaxes the bonds in the fabric. However, without the weight of an iron, the steam cycle probably won’t completely remove every wrinkle.
It might reduce wrinkles on clothes that are thin and have large enough weaves to let the steam in (like jersey cotton). But for stiffer fabrics and huge, noticeable wrinkles, you’re still going to need to pull that iron out. However, a steam cycle should do part of the job for you, and reduce the time you’ll have to spend on an ironing board.
Beyond the wrinkle benefits, a steam cycle can also be helpful when it comes to eliminating odors, allergens, and bacteria from your laundry load. Conventional dryers don’t really have the same ability.
We love the Samsung DVE45R6100C dryer because of its killer Normal cycle that can completely dry a load in just 51 minutes. It may run a little hot, with temperatures topping out at 153°F, but if you’re consistently dealing with large loads of wet laundry, you’ll appreciate this dryer’s drying power.
From a design perspective, the DVE45R6100C is one of the first Samsung appliances to have the eagerly awaited champagne finish. Additional steam (Steam Sanitize and Refresh) cycles and cycle customization options (cycle dryness, temperature, and time) only add to the appeal of this dryer. Between its strong drying performance, good looks, useful cycles/options, and a retail price that won’t break the bank, the Samsung DVE45R6100C is a great dryer all around.
The LG DLEX7900BE is very effective because it can get your load more than 80% dry on all four major cycles (Normal, Speed Dry, Delicates, and Bedding), as well as provide premium drying on the Speed Dry and Delicates cycles. The Speed Dry cycle will dry a small load in about 25 minutes, and the Delicates cycle keeps temperatures cooler (around 109°F) so as not to damage special fabrics like those found on lingerie and sportswear. While the Normal cycle runs a bit long, as with most LG dryers, you can reduce the cycle time (though you may lose some laundry dryness).
Unsurprisingly, this LG dryer is full of neat cycles, cycle options, and features. An Anti-Bacterial cycle gets up to 178°F. You also get two steam cycles (Steam Fresh and Steam Sanitary), a steam option (TurboSteam), and Wrinkle Care. Even better, the front-load laundry door can open to the side or downward. This gives you the flexibility to pop wet, heavy laundry loads into the dryer without wrenching your back. Basically, whatever wet laundry you can dish out, the LG DLEX7900BE dryer can handle.
The stylish-looking GE GFD85ESPNRS dryer shouldn’t be hidden away in a laundry closet. With its Royal Sapphire finish, it could be just another lovely piece of decor in your home. Not only is it pretty, it also boasts a wide range of cycles and options. With PowerSteam cycles, a Sanitize cycle, a Reduce Static option, built-in wi-fi, and Damp Alert, you’ll appreciate its functionality even more than its aesthetics.
Although the Quick cycle setting will take about an hour, The Normal, Quick, and Delicates cycles can get the laundry load more than 97% dry! Temperatures can run a little bit hot on the Quick and Bulky/Bedding cycles, but as long as you’re not using these cycles every day, your clothes won’t experience too much wear and tear. For a dryer that looks as good as it dries, check out the GE GFD85ESPNRS dryer.
The Maytag MED8230HC is one of the best steam dryers. Its massive 8.8-cubic-foot drum is large enough to accommodate a family of any size. Its cycles run quickly and get laundry loads 100% dry. It’s also covered by one of the best warranties in the industry.
When it comes to extras, the MED8230HC offers steam and sanitize options, useful smart features, and an included shoe rack. There’s not much to dislike about this dryer: If it’s in your budget, you should buy it.
The Electrolux EFME627UTT dryer is great-looking, with simple controls. It’s also rich with cycles and options, including Perfect Steam, which can help to relax any wrinkles away. Its Quick Dry cycle completes in a mere 15 minutes. And while the Normal cycle is slow, the Heavy cycle takes only an hour. While cycle times may vary, the Normal and Delicate cycles can both get your load 100% dry, and that temperatures never get hot enough to start damaging clothes. The Electrolux EFME627UTT represents the perfect balance between cycle times and cycle temperatures.
As the counterpart to the stellar Electrolux EFLS627UTT washing machine that has a spot in the detergent drawer for laundry pods, this dryer is another great addition to the Electrolux laundry family.
Heavy cycle done in one hour
99% dry clothes
Normal cycle takes over an hour and a half
If you’re looking for a replacement dryer, the Maytag MED7230HW is a solid pick. This appropriately-priced mid-range option has all the features you want and some you didn’t know you needed—like letting you know when you need to adjust a load. It boasts simple controls, a solid drying performance, and decent smart features.
Jonathan Chan currently serves as the Lab Manager at Reviewed. If you clean with it, it's likely that Jon oversees its testing. Since joining the Reviewed in 2012, Jon has helped launch the company's efforts in reviewing laptops, vacuums, and outdoor gear. He thinks he's a pretty big deal. In the pursuit of data, he's plunged his hands into freezing cold water, consented to be literally dragged through the mud, and watched paint dry. Jon demands you have a nice day.
Julia is the Senior Scientist at Reviewed, which means that she oversees (and continually updates) the testing of products in Reviewed's core categories such as televisions, washing machines, refrigerators, and more. She also determines the testing methods and standards for Reviewed's "The Best Right Now" articles.
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