If you hate mopping your home, the problem could be that you’re using the wrong mop to get the job done faster and with less stress. This is why you should consider using a steam mop instead of a regular mop.
What, exactly, is a steam mop? A steam mop uses steam to clean carpets and floors, instead of cleaning products as in the case of a regular mop.
While that might sound great, there are some important things to know about steam mops as well as regular mops. This guide will help you to choose the best one that will clean your home quickly and effectively.
Steam Mop Vs Regular Mop: What Are Their Differences?
How do steam mops differ from regular mops? And, are they really better? Let’s compare these mops according to different categories and features.
Ease Of Use
When mopping your home, one of the most important things is to ensure the mop is easy to use and convenient. You don’t want to waste time trying to use it or ending up with streaks on your floor which you then have to go over.
A traditional mop can be a bit difficult to use. Not only do you first have to ensure you have a cleaning solution to use with the mop, but you have to put in a bit of effort to move it around your floors. If there’s stubborn dirt or stains, you will have to scrub them with the mop.
By comparison, a steam mop doesn’t require any cleaning chemicals. It makes use of water that reaches temperatures of approximately 245 degrees Fahrenheit to produce hot steam that removes dirt while you simply glide it around without much effort. The hot steam of a steam mop works well to remove stubborn dirt and stains.
That said, a steam mop requires batteries or electric power in order to work. This can get in the way of your quick cleaning session. If you use a traditional mop, you don’t require either of these things, which does make it easier to use whenever you feel like doing a quick clean of the home.
If you have a large living space, you will naturally want to ensure you can mop your home faster so that you don’t have to spend a lot of time completing this chore.
A steam mop is a better choice because you can work faster and it also dries your floors faster, which makes it easier to use.
By comparison, a traditional mop can be more tiring to use, especially if you have a large surface area that you want to clean. However, if you want to quickly mop up some dirt or spills in your home, reaching for a traditional mop can be easier.
You don’t have to worry about boiling water and waiting for it to become hot enough, and you don’t have to worry about plugging in the mop before you can use it (although you can find steam mops that are battery-operated, which makes them more convenient).
Cleaning And Sanitization
We’ve already touched on how steam mops can give your home a thorough clean, but there are other things to know. A steam mop works effectively at sanitizing your home.
This is important to eliminate bacteria and germs that can be harmful to your health. It achieves this because its steam reaches such high temperatures that are powerful enough to kill germs. It also is powerful enough to kill dust mites.
When it comes to traditional mops, they also work well to remove bacteria from the home. However, you should purchase a microfiber mop instead of one that has a head of cotton or wool, as this reduces bacteria by up to 99 percent.
A microfiber mop head also has a static electric charge that works well to collect and eliminate dust.
One of the things you’ll have to think about before mopping your floor is how heavy the mop is going to be. You want to have a lightweight mop as this will be easier to move around your floors.
If this is important to you, especially if you have lots of furniture to move around when mopping, you’ll want to choose a traditional mop. This is much lighter than a steam mop.
It usually weighs approximately three pounds, whereas a steam mop can weigh between six to 10 pounds, and this is even before you fill its water tank.
If you have different flooring materials in the home, it makes sense to reach for a mop that is versatile enough to use on all of them.
A traditional mop is highly versatile. You can use it to dry mop your floor, such as to remove debris, or you can use it wet to give your floor a more thorough clean. You can also use it on any type of flooring except for your carpet.
By comparison, a steam mop can be used on your carpet, but you can’t use it on an unsealed hardwood floor or on any kind of adhesive tile or vinyl adhesive floor as its steam gets very hot and can cause the glue to break down.
You can safely use your steam mop on sealed flooring, such as those made of hardwood, porcelain, ceramic, and linoleum floors.
Although both traditional and steam mops work well to clean and sanitize your home so it can be safer for you and your family, it’s important to bear in mind that a steam mop can be safe in other ways.
For starters, since you don’t have to make use of any cleaning chemicals when mopping, a steam mop is a more natural, healthy way to eliminate dirt and allergens from the home.
Your floors will also dry faster after being cleaned with a steam mop so that they’re safe for you and your kids to walk on without slipping. Cleaning your floors with a traditional mop can cause them to take longer to dry.
When shopping for a new mop, you’ll naturally take its price tag into consideration. If you’re on a budget, you should choose a regular mop as it’s cheaper than a steam mop. You can find traditional mops that cost as little as $16.
A steam mop can cost anything from $50 to $150 or more if you want a mop that has higher-end features.
If you want your home to be greener, you’ll naturally want to ensure that how you clean your house doesn’t have a negative effect on the environment.
A traditional mop requires cleaning solutions before it can be used. These can be harmful to your health and the environment. For example, some products you can buy on the market contain volatile organic compounds (VOCs).
These are pollutants that, when released into the atmosphere, react with nitrogen oxides which produce smog. Other dangerous ingredients include bleach, which can end up down the drain and harm aquatic life.
You can make your traditional mop kinder to your health and the environment by using natural or organic floor cleaners.
By comparison, a steam mop is much better for the environment. It doesn’t require any chemicals in order to be used. This also saves you money because you don’t have to buy floor cleaners.
You also don’t have to worry about binning or recycling plastic detergent bottles, therefore reducing waste.
How To Use A Regular Mop
If you’re interested in purchasing a regular mop, here’s what you need to know about using it.
- You will have to start by mixing a solution of cleaning detergent and water in a bucket. Follow the instructions on the bottle of the floor cleaner if you’re using a store-bought product.
- Place your mop into the solution and then wring it out. Scrub your floor with it.
- After every few passes, or when you can see that the mop is becoming dry, you should put the mop back into the cleaning solution.
- After mopping your floors, give them some time to dry. You can open windows or a door to speed up the drying process.
- Hang your mop somewhere it can air dry. This will ensure that the head of the mop dries completely and it will prevent residue from forming in the mop head fibers, which can damage your mop over time.
How To Use A Steam Mop
- To use a steam mop, you will have to add water to its reservoir or tank. Make sure you follow the manufacturer’s recommendation so that you don’t overfill the reservoir otherwise you will see water seep out of the mop.
- Attach the mop pad to the head of the mop, then plug in the machine so that it can start to heat up the water to get it to the right temperature so it’s ready for use. Depending on the type of steam mop you have, your mop might have an indicator to show you when the mop is ready.
- To steam-clean your home, you will have to move the mop forward and backward. It’s a good tip to mop in rows across the floor so that you don’t miss any areas.
Steam Mop Vs Regular Mop: Which One Should You Buy?
Now that you know some important differences between steam mops and regular mops, you might wonder which one is best for you. They both have their advantages, so you will have to consider which one will work for your specific requirements and household.
For example, if you have a large living space that’s tiring to mop with a regular mop, you should invest in a steam mop even though its initial cost will be higher.
Other times when a steam mop is better than a regular mop is when you have a specific floor type that isn’t ideal for regular mopping, such as if you have many carpets in the home.
By comparison, you should consider a regular mop if you want a quick and easy way to clean, you have a small apartment or home, or you don’t have the budget for a steam cleaner.
Can you put floor cleaner in your steam mop?
You should never pour cleaning solutions into your steam mop as this can cause the product to build up and clog the machine. If you want to clean your floors with a steam mop and cleaning solution, you should apply the cleaning solution to the floor directly.
Why is your floor sticky after you’ve mopped it?
Your floor might feel sticky after you’ve mopped it if the mop head has a buildup of cleaning solution. You should clean your mop thoroughly before using it again.
Do you have to clean your steam mop?
It’s good practice to clean your steam mop regularly. Unplug the mop, empty its water reservoir, clean the tank with a natural ingredient such as vinegar, and then wash the mop pad or replace it if it’s old.
Mopping your home is essential to keep it spick and span, but it also removes harmful dust and bacteria so that your living space can be healthier.
If you want to purchase a new mop, you might wonder if it’s better to purchase a regular mop or a steam mop.
In this article, we’ve featured all the factors to consider, as well as how the two types of mops compare.