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I have a cheapy that I picked up at Walmart as well. Its not the bottom of the line, but a mid-range. I think it cost about $30. It has an autoshut off timer, 4 steam settings (no steam to lots of steam) and an "This Iron is Hot" indicator. I wouldn't go with the cheapest (had one of those, it leaked water everywhere) but there is no reason to spend a hundred dollars.
Great advice above. i looked for: Auto shut off, great steam, good size water compartment so you don't have to refill too soon, not real heavy,
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Thank you all for the input. I have been away from the board for a few days and love that I came back to so many great replies. I think I will just start my search at Wal-mart or Target or Costco. Does Costco sell irons? They have a great return policy in case I'm not happy with it. I think the one thing that I want to change most about my iron is that the bottom is--how do I describe it?-- not smooth. It's not got nicks in it or anything, but I want a slick bottom and this one has a little bit of a texture that has bugged me with certain fabrics.
So, thanks to your great comments I'll be looking for an iron with the following:
A slick bottom
Lots of steam
Nice and heafty, but not too heavy
No auto-shut-off (That bugs me too! And I always unplug my iron, hopefully this will continue)
Priced around $30ish-$60ish
And then I guess I'll just hope for the best.
Thanks again for the help!
I gave up on the Rowenta and like my Black and Decker Digital Advantage. Also, if you put Irons in the search category you will get lots more useful information.
Came across this thread at the right time. I am now in the market for a new iron also. I had two Rowenta irons and ended up pitching them both. Leaked everywhere! My daughter came to stay for a while and bought a new iron to use. She bought a Sharp. I like the Sharp, but I have fibromyalgia and some carpal tunnel and it is just too heavy for me. And, like many of you, the auto shut off drives me nuts when I am piecing! I never used to unplug the iron, but have now gotten in the habit (after my daughter nagging me), so I will look for one that is not auto shut off. Anyone have an Oliso? I would never spend that much on an iron, but just curious if people like that one or not.
I got a Shark at Target. I like it, just doesnt' give steam very fast.
I loved my Rowenta but didn't want to spend the $$ to replace it after reading all the horror stories here, seems the quality must not be there any more.
I had a Rowenta, but it started spiting water and after reading all the fire stories, I got rid of it. I now have a very inexpensive Black and Decker and I really like it. I did decide that if I need steam, I will spray the fabric and I do not put water into the iron. Works real well so far. I've had the iron almost 2 years and it works great.
I have a Reliable with auto shut off, but that can be bypassed. It's in the manual.