Stanley Steamer -- General Information (2024)

"What are you getting all steamed up about?", "Full steam ahead!", "You need to pick up steam", and "I'm running out of steam." are only a few of many commonly used "steam" phrases in the American lexicon. Part of the fabric of American English, they have remained long after the objects that prompted their use faded from routine use and even existence. A century ago steam engines drove powerful ships making transatlantic crossings. The choo-choo sound of powerful iron horses gliding along slick steel rails lives on with the excitement of children. Steam drove the American Industrial Revolution and it was only a matter of time before the steam engine would be used to replace the horse and buggy. In the 1800s most people had a working knowledge of steam making it the preferred choice of power for many mechanical devices and applications. While the internal-combustion engine had been under development since 1860, it suffered mechanical complexities not to mention being nearly impossible to start if not in ideal mechanical order. In the 1890s the steam automobile was beginning to offer a reliable but somewhat bulky and problematic means of personal transportation. Competing for a stake in the American transportation system was the electric car that today still enjoys experimentation and development along with a few commercially viable designs.

By the start of the 1900s over 125 American manufacturers offered steam cars with all sorts of options and features. Already a more common sight in England than America, it would take identical twins Freelan Oscar and Francis Edgar Stanley in 1897 to make the steam automobile a commercial business venture. Inventors at heart, the Stanley twins had already retired wealthy from developing the airbrush and more importantly a dry photographic plate coating process upon which George Eastman would build an empire.

The Stanley's first steam car was built for personal use but it gained immediate attention. With nearly 200 orders, an unexpected business blossomed. While their car looked similar to most others, their real advantage was simplistic automation. Their early steam engine boasted 13 moving parts with the count for the entire car at 37. It was light, quiet, and perhaps the most powerful vehicle of its time; definitely the fastest. Once lit, the car automatically generated steam to meet demand with little additional attention required except perhaps watching the water level. All that was required of the driver was to set the throttle to a comfortable speed and to move the tiller for steering.

Steam engines are the only engines (or motors) that generate maximum power from rest. Through the simple movement of a lever the power was precisely controlled. With their finicky ignition systems, balky carburetors, and gear-grinding transmissions the "internal explosion engines" as the Stanley's called them were no match for the simplicity, reliability, and power of steam. The thrashing, banging, clattering, and smell of the internal combustion car was no match for the discernable hiss of a Stanley burner and the sound of tires rolling over stones on the dirt roads of the era. The smell of raw gasoline, partially burned hydrocarbons, along with a mechanical complexity of hundreds of parts for the engine and transmission not to mention the car's audible noise further tarnished the early image of the gasoline-powered automobile. In America the steam car gained popularity, especially with the rich, and Stanleys became the premier steam cars to own.

The Stanley Motor Carriage was born of an era where life was simpler, less strenuous; where the automobile was considered a weekend luxury rather than a necessity of life. Unfortunately the Stanley twins weren't interested in mass producing their products. They chose not to compete with Henry Ford who by 1914 was producing twice the cars in a day that the Stanleys produced in a year. With the introduction of the electric starter on the 1912 Cadillac the internal combustion engine became a snap to start and the twenty-minute firing-up wait of the steam car became a real disadvantage. Henry's Model T soon became available for one quarter the price of a Stanley and with the offerings of General Motors and Chrysler the end of the steam car was in sight. With limited travel distance between charges, excessively short battery life compared to today's car batteries, and their generally slow top speeds the electric cars of the era never threatened the steam car's popularity and were definitely no match for the internal explosion powered automobile.

During 25 years of production the Stanley Motor Carriage Company produced 86 major models of steam cars with some models having up to 6 body style variants. Overall production is estimated to be nearly 11,000 cars. The Stanley/Locomobile was the nation's most popular car from 1900 through 1904 but by 1905 had fallen drastically to several models of internal combustion cars. Their top production year was 1907 when 775 cars left the Newton, Massachusetts factory. The most of any single model Stanley built was just over 1700 Model 735s (in 6 body styles; 7-passenger Touring, 4-5-passenger Touring, 4-passenger Coupe, 7-passenger Sedan, 2-passenger Roadster, and 4-passenger Brougham). Model 735 cars were started in 1918, and the only model car built between 1919 and 1921. The Model 735 was phased out in 1922 for the more automated Model 740. The only other models that came close in production numbers were the Model E/EX and F and their respective numbers were in the 750 range. Built between 1905 and 1907, these cars are attributed to having established the Stanley name.

The Stanleys sold their business in 1917 and by 1924 the production line closed. While Abner Doble was able to revitalize a short interest in the steam car with a vehicle that was nearly instant starting and fully automated (Doble's atomizing burner design was the patented prototype for what we now use as the oil burner to heat a majority of the homes in the US), the steam car's destiny was not as the car of the future but a thing of the past. Today there are more Stanley Motor Carriages preserved, restored, and operating than any other steam car ever made. The Stanley Steamer, often affectionately called "The Flying Teapot", is treasured worldwide as a unique example of American Yankee inventiveness and ingenuity.

In the course of their lives the Stanley Twins were awarded numerous patents not only related to their steam car but also the air brush and even a self-propelled interurban railroad coach powered by Stanley steam engines. For an Adobe Acrobat Portable Data Format (PDF) listing of the many patents that the Stanley Twins were associated with, click the following link;

Stanley Steamer world records established by Fred Marriott in the famous 'Rocket' steamer:-

Stanley Steamer -- General Information (2024)


How long does Stanley Steemer usually take? ›

On average, it will take approximately 20 minutes per room. This time can vary greatly depending on the amount of furniture to be moved, how soiled the carpet is, and any necessary spot removal treatments.

Which is better, Zerorez or Stanley Steemer? ›

If you're trying to avoid chemicals in your home, Zerorez is your best bet, and ChemDry is another no-chemical option that's great for those with pets. If you want a carpet cleaning service with a proven track record (and you don't mind using a lot of water), try Stanley Steemer.

Do I tip Stanley steamer? ›

Stanley Steemer said (on a social post) that they don't expect tips but that it's always appreciated.

How does Stanley steamer clean rugs? ›

This machine pumps hot water into your area rug to release any dirt deep within the fibers, extract the water and remove the dirt. The powerful suction of our rug cleaning machine removes a significant amount of water so your area rug will dry quickly.

Should you vacuum before carpet cleaning? ›

Do carpet cleaners vacuum before they clean? All carpets should be vacuumed prior to being cleaned. Most professional carpet cleaning companies ask that you vacuum before they come to clean, while some may do it for you, after they arrive. Be sure you know what is standard practice by the company you call.

What are the disadvantages of steam carpet cleaning? ›

The main disadvantage of steam cleaning is that carpets must dry out before being walked on. This can take a few hours. If it takes more than 24 hours, too much water has been used during the clean. To speed up the drying process, turn on heaters and open windows and doors to improve airflow.

What is the hardest carpet to clean? ›

Cut Pile– Cut pile carpeting is mostly found in residential homes. The fuzzy layer that cut pile provides, leaves a soft layer of cushion around your house that is hard to beat. One of its only downsides is, it can be difficult to clean.

Does Stanley Steemer really use steam? ›

The truth is we do not actually steam clean carpet. At Stanley Steemer, we use a process called hot water extraction to clean your home. This is often referred to as steam cleaning because of the steam you see as we clean, but we don't actually use steam to clean.

How effective is Stanley Steemer? ›

We remove an average of 94% of common household allergens from carpet, 96.5% of allergens from tile & grout, and 96% from hardwood.

Can Stanley steamer get mold out of carpet? ›

The study also found the Stanley Steemer process effectively reduces exposure to bacteria and mold – two triggers for an allergic reaction, including asthma. Twenty-four hours post cleaning, the levels of bacteria on carpet surfaces were reduced by 90 percent, relative to the original concentration of bacteria.

Can Stanley steamer get paint out of carpet? ›

Use Steamer - If the paint doesn't soften, use a handheld steamer to soften and once again, scrape the paint with your knife. Repeat - Repeat these steps until the paint is lifted. Blot Dry - Lastly, blot dry with a clean, white towel.

Can Stanley steamer get cat pee out of carpet? ›

Stanley Steemer Odor Out Plus - This solution uses natural bacterial enzyme action to digest organic odor sources like urine. This eliminates the odor at the source rather than masking it with fragrances. It also uses a pairing agent to give immediate relief from any odors while the enzyme is working into the carpet.

Why choose Stanley Steemer? ›

Thorough, Deep Cleaning Process

Powered by our cleaning vans, our machines pump hot water deep within your carpet and use a powerful suction to remove dirt and debris. We never use methods like carpet shampooing or dry cleaning because that can cause damage to carpet fibers or leave behind residue.

Can Stanley steamer get stains out of couch? ›

With upholstery cleaning from Stanley Steemer, your furniture will be revived and renewed for a cleaner, enhanced look. We inspect upholstery for fiber type, physical defects, color fastness and staining. After, we use fabric-friendly cleaners that safely remove maximum soil.

Does Stanley Steemer clean bathrooms? ›

Refresh your bathroom with Stanley Steemer's expert tile & grout cleaning services. We remove dirt and other contaminants deeply embedded in your space, ensuring your entire bathroom shines. Avoid the stress of daily dirt and wear—let us do the work for you.

How long after carpet cleaning can I put furniture back? ›

Moving heavy furniture back onto your carpets before it is completely dry can dent carpet fibers and transfer stains from furniture finishes. Your flooring specialist can give you an exact time range of when it's safe to move furniture back into place, but for the most part, it's recommended to wait about 24 hours.

How long does it take for carpet to dry after professional steam cleaning? ›

Hot water extraction (steam cleaning) is one of the most effective ways to clean carpets. It relies on pressurized water heated to extreme temperatures to rinse cleaning agents out of the carpet. After the cleaning process is complete, the carpet typically takes 6 to 12 hours to dry.

How fast was the Stanley Steemer? ›

A Stanley Steamer set the world record for the fastest mile in an automobile (28.2 seconds) in 1906. This record (127 mph or 204 km/h) was not broken by any automobile until 1911, although Glen Curtiss beat the record in 1907 with a V-8-powered motorcycle at 136 mph (219 km/h).

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