The Shark Portable Steam Pocket SC630 steam cleaner draws mixed reviews: Some users say it produces tons of steam while others complain that it sputters, has to reheat frequently, and just moves dirt around instead of blasting it away. Several owners report that this uneven performance improves if you use distilled water instead of tap water.
Lots of steam -- sometimes. When the Shark Portable Steam Pocket SC630 works, owners say it delivers lots of steam at the push of a button. But just as often, they get sputtering water or sporadic steam. "It will start...some steam comes out and then it slows down and then it's like it has to take another 'running go,'" writes one reviewer at HomeDepot.com. Even when the SC630 does produce steam, many users say they still need to apply a pre-cleaner or cleaning agent. Using distilled water may help, but the Shark's overall performance remains uneven, as well as noisy.
A little bulky, but light. Overall, the Shark Portable Steam Pocket SC630 gets positive reviews for its size. One expert reviewer calls it a "nice handling size." Others say the Shark steam cleaner is a little too bulky, but praise its light weight of 2.6 pounds. Yet it's also prone to tipping over, and you have to hold the trigger down constantly to get steam. Tool switches and refills take longer than many users would like; the manufacturer promises steam within about 30 seconds, but owners say it's really more like three to four minutes and, even then, can be sporadic. "10 seconds on, then 30 seconds to warm back up," writes a BestBuy.com customer.
Lots of attachments, but not much else. The Shark Portable Steam Pocket SC630 comes with a long list of accessories, including an extension hose, cleaning wand, wedge cleaning attachment, various microfiber pockets, bristle brushes, a scrubber, a squeegee and a garment steamer kit -- plus a tote bag to hold it all. The bristle brushes seem to last for only one or two uses, a common problem with most steamers. Also, overall quality control is sometimes questionable; one BestBuy.com user reports that his Shark SC630 stopped producing steam after just a month. It's covered by a one-year warranty.
The Shark SC630 is listed twice at Amazon.com. This page bears the brunt of the negativity, with an average score of 3.5 stars out of 5 after more than 95 user reviews. One owner sums up the criticism by saying, "[the steam] was kinda warm, kinda blowy, not really all that wet."
Review: Shark Premium SC630 Portable Steam Pocket, Contributors to Amazon.com, As of November 2013
At Amazon.com, a refurbished version of the Shark SC630 draws a rating of 4.2 stars out of 5 from nearly 40 user reviewers -- markedly better than the other Amazon.com listing for the same product. That said, the comments mostly mimic those found at other sites.
Review: Euro-Pro Shark SC630 Steam Pocket Multi Purpose Portable Steamer Cleaner - Manufacturer Refurbished, Contributors to Amazon.com, As of November 2013
Mariette Mifflin, About.com's expert on housewares and appliances, tries the Shark Pocket System SC630 steam cleaner at home and ultimately gives it 4.5 stars out of 5. Three users are less happy, giving it an overall score of 2 stars out of 5.
Review: Shark Pocket Steam System SC630 Review, Mariette Mifflin, April 13, 2010
After about 20 reviews, HomeDepot.com users give the Shark Portable steamer an overall rating of 3.7 stars out of 5. The biggest complaints are that the steam isn't hot enough or has to be reheated too often. It seems to get its best reviews for lighter household cleaning tasks.
Review: Shark Portable Steam Pocket, Contributors to HomeDepot.com, As of November 2013
More than 15 users review the Shark SC630 steam cleaner at BestBuy.com, giving it an overall rating of 4 stars out of 5. Several note that the cleaner needs to stop and reheat periodically during use, while others point out that its controls and handle can be a little awkward.
Review: Shark - Steam Pocket Handheld Steam Cleaner - Lavender, Contributors to BestBuy.com, As of November 2013
Just a handful of owners review the Shark SC630 steam cleaner at Wayfair.com, giving it an average score of 3.8 stars out of 5. One prefers it for steaming clothes, while another says that some elbow grease is still required.
Review: Shark Portable Steam Pocket Cleaner, Contributors to Wayfair.com, As of November 2013