Many people dread not knowing how to properly use and clean a steam mop. You must spend a lot of your time doing your dreaded chores, one of which is mopping your home. If you want to make it easier for yourself to clean everything up in a short time, what you most certainly have to do is add a steam mop to the cleaning supplies collection.
However, once you purchase the steam mop and you start using it, you will also need to learn how to clean it. In my guide, I will teach you the best and easiest ways to clean a steam mop and its separate parts. Also, I will tell you more about the things that you can use to successfully clean your mop.
Once you and I go over all of these things, you will know how to better use and clean your steam mop. This will save you a lot of time and energy that you will be able to spend doing things that you love instead of household chores. So, without further ado, let’s get right to it!
How to Clean a Steam Mop?
Learning how to clean a steam mop is just as important as learning how to use one. The mop has several component parts – the head that is covered with a pad, there are cloths, a nozzle, and a water tank.
Depending on the manufacturing company and the mop itself, other parts may be included in the original packaging.
Usually, the cheaper steam mops have fewer parts while the mops that come at a higher price have additional parts and more cleaning options.
The thing with these parts is that they all need to be properly and separately cleaned if you want to remove all dirt from the mop.
Today, I will teach you how to clean a steam mop and all the separate parts. This is what you should know!
The Steam Mop Has To Be Unplugged
Never start with the cleaning with the steam mop plugged in! Because of the cleaning supplies and the water, an accident might happen if the mop is still plugged in. To avoid accidents, unplug the mop before doing anything else.
It will take only about 15 minutes for the mop to cool down. Once it is cool and you can hold it comfortably, you can start with the cleaning process.
It might be a good idea to start by cleaning the water tank. Then, make your way to the separate parts. Next, I will talk about how to clean the separate parts of the steam mop.
Cleaning the Water Tank
Whenever you clean with your steam mop, I advise you to always clean the water tank when you finish. Even though wasting clean water is not a good idea, keeping it in the water tank is not a good idea either.
Leaving water in the tank can shorten the lifespan of the mop and cause corrosion of the separate parts. Also, you might find mold growing in the water tank. If you want to avoid any of this happening to your mop, make sure to throw out the entire water from the water tank when you are done with the cleaning.
After you empty the water tank, you will need to proceed with cleaning it. All that dirt can cling to the tank and if you do not clean it, it will contaminate the water you put in there the next time.
Using a clean cloth, you can remove all dirt and grime from the tank. If there is still some dirt or white haze on the tank, you will also need to clean it with some vinegar to remove that haze.
Vinegar is often used for cleaning because of its natural antimicrobial properties. You can dilute it with water so that the acid in it does not damage the tank.
After cleaning the tank with vinegar or another type of cleaning solution that you have, make sure to wash the tank again and use a cloth to dry it completely.
Vinegar is the best choice for cleaning the water tank. I advise against using harsh chemicals because they can damage the tank itself and make it useless.
Cleaning the Nozzles
Aside from cleaning the water tank, you should also clean the nozzle. If you are using hard water when cleaning, cleaning the nozzle is a must. Hard water can contain limestone and some minerals in it, which can eventually block the nozzle.
If you want to avoid mineral residue from clogging up your nozzle, you should use demineralized water when you clean with your steam mop. This could also help prolong the life of the mop.
If the nozzle is blocked up, you will need to unblock it as soon as possible. Try to remove the mop head base to get to the nozzle easily. Any residue will be around the nozzle itself.
Use either a cotton pad or a thin pin to clean the residue from the nozzle. Certain brands include a device to clean the nozzle with the product, but some do not. However, this is not a reason to worry as a simple paperclip will do the job of cleaning the nozzle.
Once you remove the residue, you can go ahead and add the mop head to the nozzle again.
Cleaning the Pads
The mop pads are one of the most important parts of the steam mop. If they are not clean, there is no way to clean anything else with the steam mop.
Cleaning the pads after each cleaning session is advised. This will help remove all dirt and bacteria from the pad and it will help with cleaning better.
Some mops come with disposable pads. These are usually thrown away after each cleaning. However, there are microfiber steam mops or mops with cotton pads. These types of pads are usually reusable and can be easily cleaned.
You can go about cleaning the pads in two ways – either do it by hand or just put the pads in the washer and let the machine clean them for you. If you use a washer, then you must not use any softener or bleach as they can damage the material.
Check the mops for any directions on how to properly clean them in the washer.
Before you attach the pad back to the mop head, make sure that it is completely dry because you will want to avoid growing mold on it.
Cleaning the Entire Mop
Last but not least, you need to simply wipe the exterior of the mop clean before you use it again. By doing this, you will be able to remove all moisture and dust that might be left on it.
Do this using a clean cloth, no cleaning solutions are necessary. Once you finish this step, the mop can be either used again or stored away until you need it.
Recommended Cleaners for Steam Mops
In addition to learning how to clean a steam mop, you will need to learn what you can use.
With steam mops, using natural ingredients is advised. You will not have to spend time or money on buying cleaning solutions from the store – things like vinegar or baking soda will work just fine.
Another thing that you can use to clean a steam mop with is CLR, vinegar, or even baking soda. Here is some more information on these cleaners for steam mops!
If you have never seen what vinegar can do to a steam mop, you are in for a big surprise. There are a lot of benefits to using vinegar to clean steam mops and not only that – you can also use it to clean your carpets and tiles.
This is how you can use vinegar for your steam mop. First, you need to add 2 cups of vinegar solution to a gallon of warm water. Then, add that water into the water tank and clean away. You will surely see all dust and dirt be removed from your floors, and you will be thankful that you tried this trick.
There are several reasons why vinegar is so beneficial for cleaning floors. Here are some of them:
1. You Can Use It as Disinfectant
Not only is it going to clean the floors from dirt, but it will also remove all kinds of bacteria and germs. You will not have to worry about your pets or children becoming infected with that bacteria, while at the same time you will not have to worry about any chemicals being left on the floor.
Since vinegar is a natural disinfectant, it will not have any kind of negative impact on your home or your family.
2. You Can Clean Everything and Anything with It
I might be talking about cleaning floors here, but the fact is that vinegar can be used to clean just about anything – from toilets and bathtubs to floors and tiles. The list goes on and on.
3. You Will Make Everything Smell Better
Last but not least, vinegar is great because it is a natural purifier – it will remove all types of bad odors you might have going on in your house. What else would you want in a natural cleaner?
When it comes to cleaning blockage from the nozzle or mop head, there is nothing better than you can use than the calcium lime and rust remover. The only thing that you need to do is pour a bit of this cleaning solution into the mop head. Then, using a simple rag, remove all buildup that you see in the area.
I have spoken about removing the blockage from nozzles, now I will teach you more about removing scale with baking soda. Baking soda works just as well as any descaling solution that you can buy from the store.
What you need to do with the baking soda is add about 2oz. of it to one-quart clean water. Add this to the water tank and turn the steam mop on. Leave it like that for about an hour or even more. Then, turn it off and leave it to cool down.
Once the mop is cooler, you can remove the tank and throw out the water. Clean the tank and check if any scale is left on it. If you had enough baking soda in the water, the tank should be completely cleaned from the scale.
Cleaners to Avoid When Cleaning a Steam Mop
The first thing you need to know about cleaning a steam mop is that you should use only clean water. That clean water is converted into steam that is then used to remove all bacteria, dirt, fungi, or viruses that you might have in your house.
A lot of people do not think that cleaning with water is as effective as cleaning with chemicals. However, using steam to clean floors and tiles is going to remove even the bacteria that we do not see.
In case you want to use some cleaning solutions, you should consider some of the natural and organic products. Nowadays, many companies create cleaning solutions with only natural ingredients that are kinder to the environment. You should look into those cleaning solutions as an alternative to chemicals.
Now You Know How to Clean a Steam Mop!
The steam mop is the best thing that you can invest in and learning how to clean it is one of the most important things about it. I hope that this guide helped you learn what are the steps you should take when cleaning a steam mop and what you can use to clean it properly.
Have you ever used a steam mop? Tell me more about your experience in the comment section and share some tips and tricks for others that use steam mops!