How to Kill Weeds With Hot Air

Updated July 20, 2017

Weeds soak up nutrients and water from the soil, making it difficult for surrounding plants and flowers to stay healthy and grow. Eventually, weeds either strangle the roots of desired plants in the garden or take up so much space, water and nutrition from the soil that the other plants give way and die. A handheld steamer is similar to a steam iron, used to steam wrinkles out of clothing. A handheld steamer can apply enough heat to break down weed plant cells and interrupt photosynthesis. This method of thermal weed clearing is often used on larger farms with commercial devices fuelled by propane.

Fill the handheld steamer with water.

Plug the hand held steamer into an outdoor power outlet. An extension cord is necessary to maximise the maneuverability of the steamer as you move through the garden.

Turn on the steamer. Wait at least one minute for the water to heat up.

Point the steamer at the weeds at close range and blast them with hot steam.

Watch for the waxy coating on the weeds to turn a dull matt. Removal of this coating makes it impossible for the plant to retain water, ensuring that the weed will die.

Things You'll Need

  • Handheld steamer
  • Power outlet
  • Extension cord
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About the Author

Nina Snow has been a freelance writer since 2006. Her varied work experience ranges from entertainment production to food criticism to retail administration. She holds a Bachelor of Arts from Washington University in St. Louis and a Master of Arts from Yale University.