Q & A: How to kill eggs and fleas with Steam Cleaning
A. With a quality vapor steam cleaner such as the units we carry, the temperature that can be maintained with a brush at the end of the wand will be about 180 – 210 degrees. And by wrapping the end of the larger brush with a towel to trap the steam before it loses heat, the temperature will be about 210 – 240 degrees.
The effective temperatures for killing dust mites is 135 degrees, flea eggs at about 140 degrees, and many bacteria (such as e-coli) at 165 degrees; all of these temperatures are well under the high operating temperatures of these units.
My suggestion would be to move the brush on solid surfaces at a rate of about 1 inch per second, and with surfaces such as mattresses and upholstery about ½ inch per second.
Remember to use as little steam as possible when you are cleaning. When you use too much steam, the excess moisture created dissipates much of the heat before it can be used for cleaning.