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Problem with Rowenta Iron

sharonquilts | Posted in Equipment and Supplies on

I have had Rowenta irons for many years.  I have had my recent one, a “RowentaGlide” for the past 3-4 years. I stopped putting water in it the past year because it spews from the holes on the sole plate, staining my fabric.  Is there any way to fix this?


  1. sltboop | | #1

    hi sharonquilts i think it just needs to be cleaned .with 1 part vinger 3 parts water .if it has steam burst press it or if it has steam clean button use it may have to be done a couple of times always use distilled water .hope this helps .

    1. sharonquilts | | #3

      I got out the instruction sheet for my iron and discovered that you are never to use distilled water in the iron--that's what caused the problem in the first place. I will, however try the vinegar and water solution.  I also discovered a broken piece of plastic just under the soleplate on the heel --from one of it's many drops no doubt.

      1. sltboop | | #4

        didnot know about not using distilled water good to know .another good thing would be to not to drop it  that would help with the problem don;t you think ? well good luck with that .

      2. BernaWeaves | | #5

        Huh?  Why would you NOT use distilled water in an iron?   I thought that was the only reason TO buy distilled water, so you don't put any minerals or additives in the iron to clog up the holes.  If I put tap water in my iron, I'd have rust spots on my clothes within a month.  Do they say why you shouldn't use distilled water?

        1. sharonquilts | | #6

          Yes, they say it will cause the iron to spit--just as it has been doing.

          1. Palady | | #7

            On the topic of steam irons, to my knowing, better to empty them after use.  

            If memory serves, when these first came on the scene distilled water was recommended.  Over a period of time, as the design of the steam irons, and the materials used in making them changed, there was data on distilled water resulting in spitting as was stated.  Along about this same time, cooled boiled water was supposed to be the better.

            I have had more than a few steam irons in my, and my family's, years.  What I found matters is indeed to empty the iron after use.  Dare say most sewists have an ironing board & iron set up.  It would likely follow that water was left in the resevoir.  Compounding this negative, some leave the iron on the sole plate rather than stand it on end. 

            Worse yet, the iron is left plugged in.  This doing is a safety hazard as best as I know.

            The current iron I'm using - Black&Decker Model F640S - has a "self cleaning" control.  When activated, moving the thumb press down, while emptying the iron upside down, there's a noticable, somewhat forceful, ejection of water/steam. 

            This iron is in use for at least 20yrs.  It meets my need as well today as it did when it was new.

            MO, irons as many small & large appliances etc, are manufactured with obsoleteness in mind by the producing company.



        2. durf | | #18

          I have a rowenta iron and my instructions said DO NOT use distilled water as it will destroy  the inside of the iron. Why I don't Know but it said to use Spring Water which I have used for many years and  I Don;t have any problems.

          Just an input: Jan

        3. Digi | | #19

          I have used Rowenta irons for years and love them and never had a problem, except once (when I used tap water).  Tap water made my iron spit all over the place and totally ruined a piece of winter white silk, that was very disappointing.

          The water where I live now is particularly full of "stuff" and we never drink it, or even us it for cooking.  We only use distilled water that we distill here at home.

          By the way, are you a weaver?  Your name kind of implies that and, if you are, I've love to hear more about what you do.  Weaving is something that I've not tried (except for those small looms that make little squares - you know, what we did as kids).


          1. BernaWeaves | | #22


            Yes, I'm a weaver.  I've woven everything from wool rugs to linen towels to yardage for clothing, and shawls and scarves.  I have 3 large floor looms, and I love them.

            I always use distilled water in my iron for the same reason I don't drink my tap water.   There's crap in it.  I've never had a problem with my Rowenta spitting.  Then again, I always empty my iron after every use because I don't want it to rust or build up mineral deposits (ever leave water in a glass and watched it evaporate?  The glass will have mineral deposits left in it.)  I also always give it a few shots of steam to clear the vents before I start, and after I've emptied it and several times during an ironing session.  I'm amazed at the chunks that come shooting out of the vents sometimes.


  2. starzoe | | #2

    My first Rowenta iron lasted about 12 years, when it came to buy another one (at almost $200 here in Canada), I had to return two of them before I decided not to buy a Rowenta. I now have a Velocity which cost about the same and is a pain because of the automatic shut-off but it doesn't malfunction. It does beep which drives me nuts.

  3. Teaf5 | | #8

    I stopped putting water in any of my irons long ago; I use a separate spray/mister bottle of filtered drinking water, and my irons last much longer.

    Any kind of water or moisture inside the iron will cause the metal of the tank to rust, but who has time to empty the tank and heat the iron up to dry it out every time to prevent that? The separate bottle is easier to direct and control, and my always-dry Rowenta has performed beautifully for a decade at least.

    Until they make irons with non-metallic water tanks, I'll keep mine dry.

    1. User avater
      JunkQueen | | #9

      In reading your solution to the clogged-up, spitting, rust spewing irons, I just had a "DUH" moment. A spray bottle. What a common-sense approach to something that has plagued me for most of my adult life. I know there must be a legion of women out there who had already thought of that simple solution, but alas I was not one of them. Thank you.

      1. Teaf5 | | #12

        I have a lot of those "Duh" moments, too, and wonder if I'll ever figure out some of the vexing things in my life! I love this forum because everyone reaches those moments at different times and maybe we'll all reach them more quickly if we share.

    2. Crazy K | | #10

      I'm puzzled.......my Rowenta has a plastic tank.............at least any part that I can see.  I have used bottled Spring Water in mine and have no problems.  We have too many minerals to use tap......even though we soften.  I don't think soft water is recommended anyway.  The spring water seems to work fine.  I'm on my second iron in about 10 years but it was my own fault.  I dropped my iron and it hit hard and started leaking after that.  It didn't spit or sputter but it just leaked so I retired it and got a new one.


      1. Teaf5 | | #13

        Mine, too, is partly clear plastic, but the tubes leading down to the sole plate have to be metal to withstand the heat. If you live in a very dry climate, you might be fine for a long time, but anyone with humidity or near a coast knows how fast metal can rust.

        1. Crazy K | | #14

          O.K.......that makes lots of sense.  We do live in a drier climate but not arid by any means........we have very wet spring and fall and summers can get very humid.  We do have central air so that helps......and because of my expensive sewing machines I run an extra dehumidifier during the summer in our downstairs (where my sewing room is) and humidifier in winter...........just to try to keep things fairly even during the year.  Maybe I've just been lucky!  I do like my Rowenta Professional because the extra weight seemed to help when ironing and pressing out those pesky wrinkles.  I use my iron for regular ironing (when I have to do that.....which isn't too often!) as well as pressing during sewing.



          1. dollmarm | | #15

            Hey am I reading you correctly that You have 2 different Irons?  I have a professional Steamer but .... it doesn't do the job of a good iron.  However I do like to iron and will put it off until I have several pieces or when I have to iron the seams when sewing.  We have well water and we distill our well water and I use it for the steamer and iron, but do remove it after each use.  Both my iron and steamer state to do for better care of the product.

            My mother-in-law loves to iron and when she comes she will iron for me.  We have got to move closer to her. (teeheehee)  :~) 

          2. Crazy K | | #16

            The Rowenta Iron that I have is the Professional model.  I do not have a steamer....just irons.  I have the old one that leaks (Just me......can't throw it out because it still works as a dry iron!) and the one that I use.  Oh and yes, I have another Rowenta.......and 'steam and sew' or some such name.  It has the teflon on the soleplate and its a much less expensive iron.  I got it when I was doing more crafty things and getting gunk on my good iron from different fusibles, etc.

            I live in a metro area and have city water........but it has minerals in it.  I just buy spring water and that seems to work the best for me.  I accidently picked up some distilled one time but make sure that I alternate between that and spring water.  No problems so far.


          3. dollmarm | | #17

            I will have to try to Spring water to see if there's a difference.   I have read where several have stated about the Distilled water, but mine said to use it.  Hummmm......  I guess it is different with different brands and then in a couple of years from now they will say different.  :~) 

            It has been a while since I used the Steamer.  The last time I used it was my hubby's suit jacket and some curtains. I had read how great they were and I kept searching for sales and did find a good one, but it is does not replace the iron as one would like; oh well it was still worth the monies spent. I am the same with 'not' throwing things out.  I use and re-use containers for my crafts and painting and etc.. and then vacuum seal all in the kitchen in glass jars. When we bought this house over 3yrs ago - several good items where left that I already have too.  The lady here was a nurse and had cancer and died.  Her husband left her crafts as if she coming back to work them, so sad.  I have one old dresser full of ribbons, lace, paper crafts, wrapping paper and all sorts of stuff.   Anyway I need to buy a really good Iron too so not to have the one I am using only for crafts and etc...  I know I want the Rowenta - just not quite sure which one. I have been watching the sales - Thanks for the explanation, take care and enjoy  :~) 

          4. Digi | | #20

            Hey there dollmarm: I'd like to hear more about your steamer.  I used to have one called a "Streamstress", and I just loved it.  But it finally cracked (it was made of plastic) and I haven't been able to find another one like it.  I've searched on the Internet too, but I don't think they even make them anymore.  The only ones I see now are really, really expensive.

            Also ...what are you working on right now?  I'm making curtains for the kitchen (temporary, so rather boring).  We are going to completely remodel the kitchen sometime next year so didn't want to spend too much time on them.   After they completed, I think I'll try using several of the Threads articles to make "the perfect pants pattern".  I'll keep you posted on the completed product.  Take care and have a great weekend.

          5. dollmarm | | #21

            HI my lady - I was thinking of you this weekend.  I was so busy Friday I didn't get a chance to get yack much  :~)  (teeheehee)Well I bought my steamer from a Store (Hechts) that Macy bought out :~( If I can remember it was $100, but I had a $50 coupon plus it was a sale weekend and I got it even cheaper. (can't remember) I know it was a great deal or I would have never bought it.  ( I'm a sales nut)It is HOME TOUCH - Perfect Steam - Commercial Garment Steamer It has a long adjustable pole w/ several attachments.  However I did see that Costco had a Rowenta Steamer and Iron.  I told my hubby I wanted to get a new Iron and he laughingly stated that I needed to get to get to know the one I had before I bought a new one. Sad to say he is so so right.  I do not like to Iron!!!!  |In fact when he was in the military - he always sent his uniforms to the cleaners to be Ironed - so so nice.  I do iron some but his mom is a Ironer !  She loves to iron and he grew up with an ironing nut - you might say.  NOW I do love this mom as if she was my own; but she is still an ironing nut.  She worked at a Laundry Mat along side her mom at times and she ironed everything.  She iron her sheets and she use to iron her hubbys t-shirts, undies and all when he was as in the Navy.  I iron very little.   But do when need to.  I got my steamer thinking it would replace the Iron - well was I in for a BIG Surprise.  BUT I do like the steamer and it is a good one.   I am told the Rowenta that Costco has is an excellent one.  But you would have to ask those that have them.  As far as the wk'end it was good.  It rained all day Sunday. We saw the movie Expelled - then went out to dinner.  It was a really nice day despite the nasty rain and it is still raining here today.  Curtains can be boring.  I wanna make some nice ones for my guest  room, but have to wait till we decide all the remolding stuff

  4. sewelegant | | #11

    I have a Rowenta that I bought in the early 90's and I remember the instructions saying distilled water was not necessary, but do not remember them saying not to use it!  Very interesting.  I do not use the water out of the faucet because it is very, very hard and have usually just used bottled water for drinking.  My last purchased gallon was distilled... so I won't buy that again.  My problem is usually with the water disappearing too fast and having to fill the reservoir again and again.  There is always something new to learn, isn't there?  I like my iron too much to sabotage it so thank you for sharing all your information.

    Speaking of irons... I have been coveting one of those larger pressers, but the price seems so outlandish for my casual use.  Does the same thing apply for them about the distilled water, I wonder.

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