What is LG Steam Sanitary? Get Your Clothes Super Clean

I have two dogs and three kids in my house. That means I do a lot of laundry, and it’s not always the cleanest laundry, either! When I went to buy a new dryer, that why I chose a model from LG with the LG Steam Sanitary function.

LG’s Steam Sanitary function shoot cleansing Steam into your dryer, helping to eliminate bacteria, remove allergens, and get rid of smells.

Here’s what you need to know about the Steam Sanitary function.

About LG Steam Sanitary

Again, I’m a big fan of the Steam Sanitary function.

The function is so useful that I sometimes use it to sanitize towels without needing to do a full wash. If I was things and they still smell a little funky (hello, dogs) I can also use the Steam sanitary function to get them really clean and get rid of the smells.

I find it also works great when I’m washing clothes that are spiked with dust, dirt or other potential allergens. The steam helps to eliminate those.

How Steam Sanitary Works

According to LG, “ A steam generator in LG’s washing machine heats water to 100°C, making it hot enough to eliminate bacteria and even allergens from pet hairs, dead skin cells and mold.”

LG also says that the company’s “TrueSteam technology not only removes 99.9 percent of allergens but also the residue left by dead allergens.”

Basically, the dryer has a connection to your home’s water line. As it spins your clothes around, the dryer heats up water until it hits the boiling point, and directs the resulting steam into the dryer chamber.

The full Steam Sanitary cycle takes about 30 minutes. I’ve found that it’s the best way to totally eliminate mustiness on towels and other items that might get wet and stay wet for a while before you can wash them.

It’s also my go-to cycle when I take things out of the washing machine and they still smell a little funky. A quick Steam Sanitary cycle usually eliminates those lingering smells.

There’s also a Steam Fresh cycle that gives a quick burst of Steam for about 3 minutes. I like that one when I don’t need to fully sanitize something, but I just want it to smell a little better.

Steaming Instead of Washing

With the Steam Sanitary setting, it’s totally possible to clean certain items and sanitize them without doing a full wash.

Again, I find this works great for towels. You might hang up your bath towels in your bathroom and use them a few times. After that, you could wash them, but they’re already probably pretty clean.

Another option is to run them on the Steam Sanitary setting. It will dry them a bit, but more importantly it will get rid of any residual mustiness, leaving the towels feeling really crisp and clean.

But because you’re just using steam, the cleaning process takes much less time and uses a lot less water than a full wash.

Another great use of Steam Sanitary is cleaning items that can’t go in the washer. Big throw rugs, pillows, and lots of other things work with the function.

Cons of the Steam Sanitary Setting

I wouldn’t necessarily use the function with the most super sensitive fabrics. I also find that it’s not perfect with fabrics that tend to bunch up and not turn easily in the dryer, like big bed spreads.

These seem to ball up on themselves, preventing the Steam from reaching all their surfaces and performing its cleaning functions.

Dryers with steam functions are also more expensive than standard ones. LG says they steam cleaning is one of its big advantages, so they definitely charge more for it!


Steam Sanitary is a great function to use in order to sanitize laundry and remove smells and allergens.

It’s not perfect, but it’s a function I use at least once a week and find very helpful.

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