Like many of JML’s products the Phoenix Gold Iron comes with a twist on the traditional, in this case an iron with a separate steam generator and ceramic sole plate. This gives it a few advantages over some irons on the market, although nothing you could truly call revolutionary.
These quirks mean the Phoenix Gold has been the subject of very differing reviews, with some people loving it and some hating it. We found it to be a very capable iron, although you may have to slightly adjust your usual way of ironing to get the best out of it.
Like many of JML’s products it also comes with a video promotion, complete with cheesy voiceover extolling its many virtues.
Phoenix Gold build quality
The iron itself feels well built and sturdy, although at 4.3 ounces it’s not only weighty but one of the heaviest models on the market. When it’s larger than average water tank (13.3 oz) is filled with water it’s even heavier, so if you’re looking for something lightweight look elsewhere.
The big selling point of the Phoenix Gold iron is its steam power and boy does it steam, ALL THE TIME. As it has a separate steam generator it is capable of producing a constant supply of steam which is great for getting through the ironing quick, although inevitably it also gets through the water in the iron very quickly too. This means you will have to refill the tank ever 7 or so minutes during large ironing jobs and while it does come with a water jug to do so, some will definitely find it annoying that they have to keep refilling it over and over – although the front opening door does mean you can easily fill it when horizontal so you shouldn’t have any problems with even the smallest sink.
Read our round-up of the best steam irons.
The continuous steam also means that you will have to turn off the steam between garments or even while adjusting the item you are currently ironing, otherwise whichever room you are currently ironing in will quickly become a steam room. How annoying you find this constant on and off will entirely be down to you, it is annoying at first although I’d suggest most people will quickly become used to it.
Even if you are quick to cut the steam when it’s not being used there will be a lot of steam flying around so you may need to think about where you will be using it. If you’re in a basement flat or somewhere susceptible to damp I’d advise against it and you do have to be careful with the steam as it does have the potential to burn either yourself or others.
Saying all that, the steam does do a good job of cutting through creases and the ability to steam vertically means it can be used on curtains and hanging clothes. It also comes with a brush for use when vertically ironing for removing pet hair etc.
The base of the iron is made from a ceramic plate which is relatively non-stick, although it doesn’t glide as well as some models we have seen. All the steam also comes the triangular section at the front so it doesn’t distribute the steam as evenly as some irons, but we didn’t find that this impaired performance in any way. The plate is also easy to clean, although long term users have reported some issues with calcification, so if you live in a hard water area it’s worth looking at another model with dedicated anti-calc features, like the Philips GC4521/87 Azur Performer Plus.
It’s not the quietest iron, particularly when it is running out of water, so it could be a bit distracting if you want to watch the TV while you’re ironing, but with the amount of steam flying around it might not be such a bad thing to have your full attention on the job in hand.
What the others say
“The JML Phoenix Gold steam iron removes creases effectively when the steam is on, but steam cannot be used on the lower temperature settings.” Good Housekeeping
“If you like a steam iron with a touch of bling about it, the JML Phoenix Gold Ceramic V16102 is for you.” Which?