Contrary to popular belief, the vast majority of mops don’t wear out as a result of use. Instead, they degrade and fall apart as a result of abuse. They might be among the simplest of cleaning tools out there, but they’re also among the most misunderstood.
If you’ve ever wondered why some mops end up looking awful, smelling even worse and being destined for the dustbin in no time at all, it almost never comes down to the quality of the mop itself. Instead, it’s all about the way it is treated.
So if you do happen to go about any mopping duties around the office – or even at home for that matter – here’s a quick rundown of just a few tips on how to do it right:
Breaking In a Mop
Before getting started with a brand-new mop, it’s worth following a few simple steps to ‘break it in’ properly. And you’ll be glad you did, as it will usually work better and last longer:
- Fill a bucket with water at around 120º F – 140º F degrees and add a few capfuls of floor cleaner, or as much as specified on the instructions.
- Place the mop head in the liquid for around 5 seconds and give it a good swish around.
- Take it out, wring it thoroughly, rinse under clean water and repeat another 4 times.
- When finished, get rid of the cleaning solution you have used to prep your new mop and use a fresh mixture to get the cleaning done.
Mop Use and Care
- Never skip the process above as you do not know what kinds of nasties are lurking in your new mop when you first buy it. If nothing else, there will probably be surface oils it is important to remove.
- If, however, you are using a brand-new microfiber mop, you do not need to go through the preparation process at all.
- Every time you have finished using your mops, they should be rinsed out comprehensively with warm water and hung in a place that has plenty of ventilation to dry them out. Under no circumstances should you ever leave a mop in a bucket of cleaning solution overnight.
- Most mops are not designed for abrasive scrubbing of stubborn stains and dirt – doing so will only damage or tear out strands, affecting its performance.
- The stronger the cleaning products you use, the faster the strands will degrade and break.
- If a mop head has started to smell bad, allow it to dry thoroughly before carrying out the ‘breaking in’ process above a number of times and allowing it to dry again.
- Always store mops with the head facing down, ideally in a position where they are not in direct contact with any walls or surfaces.
- Replace your mop heads on a regular basis – old and worn mop heads only make for more difficult and long-winded jobs with poor results to follow.