The Best Types of Mops for Every Household

By Jeneva Aaron Updated December 1, 2021

Enjoy sparkling floors with the right type of mop for your needs.

The Best Types of Mops for Every Household

Mopping can feel like an exhausting household chore. Hard floors can collect a lot of dirt and grime that needs regular cleaning. And this can often feel like a never-ending task. Trust us, we know!

But, using the correct type of mop for your dirty floors can make a big difference! With 11 types of mops to choose from, there’s a lot to consider!

Different mop types have unique features and benefits as well as different drawbacks. So it’s helpful to know the pros and cons of each, so you can choose the right option for your cleaning.

In this article, we’ll explore the different types of mops to help you find the perfect match for your floors. We’ll compare dry and wet mops as well as everything in between. So you can enjoy fast and efficient mopping with every clean.

Types of Mops Comparison Chart

TypeSurfacesMop Heads MaterialSpecial FeaturesFlawsAverage Price
Flap Mop
Hardwood
Marble
Laminate
Synthetics
Microfibers
Cotton
Leave treak-free shine
Wet Dry usage
Large cleaning path
Mop cloth difficult to wring out
Check Price
Dust Mop
Ceilings
Walls
Light fixtures
Ceiling fans
Synthetics
Microfibers
Light cleaning
Don't use moisture
Won't remove stains
Won't shine a floor
Check Price
Spray Mop
Tile
Larminate
Finished or sealed wood floors
Microfibers
Spray trigger on the handle
Don't need a bucket
Push debris instead of mopping
Check Price
String Mop
Soft for all surfaces
Microfibers
Cotton
For both indoor and outdoor cleaning
Very absorbent
Can leave streaks
Require a bucket and wringer
Check Price
Strip Mop
Floor: all surfaces
Cabinets
Synthetic fabrics
Fast frying
Mop heads are washable
Not as absorbent
Check Price
Sponge Mop
Linoleum
Uneven surfaces like tile flooring
Walls
Sponge material
Detachable heads
Great for scrubbing
Streak marks
Check Price
Steam Mop
All types of hard floor except wood
Microfibre pad
Steam usage to desinfect
Efficient on high traffic areas
Small water tank
Check Price
Spin Mop
Soft for all hard surfaces
Microfibers
180-degree or 360-degree cleaning
Less physical effort
Need to screw the separate parts together
Check Price
Sping Electric Mop
Soft for all hard surfaces
Microfibre pad
Leaves a floor that is barely damp
Removes stuck on dirt
Automatic cleaning
Battery's limited runtime
Check Price
Vacuum Mops Combo
All types of hard floor except wood
Microfibre pad
Removes 99% of dirt and soils
Can clean large areas faster
Not as effective as a true vacuum
Check Price
Robot Mop
All types of hard floor except wood
Microfibre pad
Clean under furniture
Spot cleaning feature
Small water tank
Check Price

Types of Mops: In-Depth Review

With so many different types of mops on the market, you can find a range of shapes, sizes, and styles to choose from. Some mops are better for certain cleaning situations than others.

With this comprehensive list, you can find the best match for your needs.

1. Flat Mop

flat mop

Flat mops are mops that come with a flat circular or rectangular head. They’re popular for quick, daily cleaning and they’re easy to use because of their thin design. Their flat rectangular or circular shape makes them perfect for reaching into tight spaces and corners.

Plus, they don’t use a lot of water for cleaning making them great for surfaces like hardwood, laminate, or marble flooring that can’t handle a lot of moisture.

A flat mop-head uses reusable or disposable cloth pads usually made from a blend of polyester, microfiber, and nylon. Microfiber mops provide a streak-free clean by producing a static that attracts dirt as you clean. The static cloth holds onto the dirt and grime, so there are no streak marks left after you clean with a microfiber mop.

Flat mops can also be stored easily and require little maintenance or ongoing cost. But, a flat static mop is not efficient for removing stubborn floor stains or marks.

For an example of a flat mop, see this LavoHome microfiber mop.

PROS:
  • Wet or dry mop usage
  • The static mop-head can rotate 360 degrees
  • Leave floors streak-free
  • Large floor cleaning path
CONS:
  • The static mop cloth is difficult to wring out when cleaning

2. Dust Mop

dust mop

A dust mop is a dry cleaning floor mop that works more like a broom or duster than a traditional mop. This is why they’re often paired with a wet mop when cleaning. Dust mops also collect more dust and dirt than brooms or dusters because they can glide across the surface.

Dust mops are ideal for light floor cleaning. But, these floor mops don’t remove stains or shine the floor.

However, dust mops are also great for dusting other areas of your home, such as walls, ceilings, or lights. And they can collect pet hair, crumbs, and other large debris particles from your surfaces. So a dust mop provides a lot of versatility for home cleaning.

Finally, most dust mops have replaceable mop-heads that can be cleaned in a washing machine and reused. These dust mop heads are made from synthetic materials or microfibers.

For example, see this Xifando dust microfiber mop.

PROS:
  • Perfect for light cleaning
  • Effectively collects dust and dirt
CONS:
  • Dry floor mops don’t remove stains

3. Spray Mop

Spray Mop

Spray mops work like flat mops but with an added spray bottle function on the head. Therefore they don’t require a bucket, meaning there’s no dirty water to handle. Plus, you won’t have to worry about carrying a mop and bucket while you’re cleaning.

Spray mops are easy to use. They have a spray trigger on the mop handle that releases water or a cleaning solution onto your floors. This is then wiped away by the flat mop head as you clean.

A spray mop is perfect for all hard floors, such as tile, hardwood, laminate, or vinyl flooring. Plus, it’s small and compact. So spray mops are a great option if you have small storage or cupboard space.

For example, this O-Cedar ProMist is a compact spray mop.

PROS:
  • Eliminates need to carry around a mop and bucket when you’re cleaning
  • No dirty water to deal with
  • Easy to maneuver
CONS:
  • Tendency to push debris instead of mopping
  • Difficult to mop under furniture

4. String Mop

String Mop

String mops are one of the most common types of traditional mops.

A string mop has a long pole with a head of looped or cut strings made out of cotton or rayon. Looped end mops provide better absorbency and can be machine-washed in warm water for extra convenience. However, cut-end mops are very sanitary and can be effective across multiple surfaces.

String mops can also have polyester or microfiber strings that provide better sanitation and durability. However, these are less absorbent than cotton or rayon strings.

A string mop is ideal for heavy-duty cleaning. Plus, they’re one of the most versatile types of mops. They can be used for indoor as well as outdoor cleaning. And string mops are suitable for commercial or large-space cleaning as well.

However, a string mop isn’t the most efficient for indoor cleaning because they require a bucket and wringer. String mops are also prone to leaving streak marks on your floors which can be frustrating when cleaning.

See this Yocada mop for an example of a string mop.

PROS:
  • Perfect for both commercial and home cleaning jobs
  • Soft for all surfaces
  • Some can be washed up to 50 times
CONS:
  • Can leave streaks
  • Require a bucket

5. Strip Mop

Strip Mop

A strip mop has a mop-head made of synthetic fabric strips with a wringer function attached to the lower end of the handle.

Compared to a string mop, strip mops are easier to maintain. Most strip mop heads are machine washable. Plus, you can use them on floors as well as above-floor surfaces or for dusting around the home.

However, strip mops are less absorbent than string mops. So they can leave you with a lot of water on your floors after cleaning. Plus, they tend to be smaller. Therefore strip mops are not great for cleaning large areas.

But, strip mops are better for scrubbing bacteria and grime from your floor than flat mops. Plus, the synthetic fabric strips are fast-drying. This means that they are less likely to lead to bacteria growth or bad odors.

However, they tend to be less durable than other types of mops and may require frequent cleaning and replacing.

For example, see this AKOMA strip mop.

PROS:
  • Wet and dry cleaning uses
  • Remove dirt between gaps easily
  • Can clean all types of surfaces
CONS:
  • May leave too much water on the floor

6. Sponge Mop

Sponge Mop

A sponge mop has an absorbent, fast-drying sponge-like head making them ideal for cleaning up liquid spills.

Most sponge mops come with a wringer attachment that removes excess liquid from the sponge. However, the wringer is often not very efficient and can result in streak marks on your floors.

Sponge mops are best for uneven surfaces such as linoleum or tiles and kitchen floors. But these mops are also great for wall cleaning. Plus, you can scrub dirt and marks on your floor with little effort using the sponge-head.

Sponge mops also tend to have detachable mop-heads that can be easily cleaned in a washing machine or replaced.

Because the sponge on a wet mop can collect bacteria and mold, it’s important to maintain and properly clean it to avoid bad odors. They should also be completely dried before using them again.

Lastly, most sponge mops come with an extendable handle. So they’re easy to maneuver and control while you clean.

For example, see this Casabella Painted Steel Sponge Mop.

PROS:
  • Perfect for cleaning walls
  • Efficient on uneven surfaces
  • Easy to use
CONS:
  • Wringer isn’t effective
  • Need to be maintained properly

7. Steam Mop

Steam Mop

A steam mop uses heat from water steam to clean and disinfect your floors. Unlike regular mops, they don’t require cleaning products or detergents. They provide an eco-friendly cleaning option for your floor surfaces.

Steam mops are electrical mops that have a microfiber material pad below the steam jet that traps dirt as you clean. And many can also provide dry steaming for cleaning your floors without water.

They also have a swivel head. This makes steam mops perfect for cleaning hard-to-reach areas and around furniture.

This type of mop is efficient at tackling high-traffic areas or ground in stains and dirt. Plus, they can be used on both hard floors and carpets.

However, they provide a lot of moisture. So a steam mop isn’t suitable for use on wood or laminate floors. But, this type of mop is perfect for cleaning tiles as well as carpets or rugs.

For example, see this Bissell Steam Cleaner.

PROS:
  • Sanitize without the use of harsh chemicals
  • Eliminates 99.9% of germs and bacteria
  • Eco-friendly
CONS:
  • Can damage wood floors
  • Takes time to warm up

8. Spin Mop

Spin Mop

Spin mops are also known as twist mops because they use a twisting motion for cleaning dirt and debris from your floors.

A spin mop is similar to a regular string mop in that it functions to lift both dry and wet messes from your floors. It has a mop-head of strings designed for spinning while cleaning to remove stubborn stains without having to scrub your floor surface.

However, spin mops have a different wringing mechanism than regular mops. They have a bucket with either a handle or pedal that takes care of the wringing for you. This bucket has separate chambers for clean water and dirty water.

The separate spin basket holds the dirty water after wringing, so your clean water always stays clean. Plus, some spin mops have a built-in agitator in the clean water chamber. This stirs the water and thoroughly cleans the mop head during cleaning.

For an example of a spin mop, see this O-Cedar mop.

PROS:
  • Easy control of the desired mop dampness
  • 180-degree or 360-degree cleaning
  • Can reach under furniture
CONS:
  • Needs a bucket

9. Spin-Electric Mop

Spin Electric Mop

A spin-electric mop has an automatic spinning head that provides an efficient clean for your floors. And they’re suitable to use on a range of different floor surfaces.

But, what stands out the most with these mops is that you don’t need to actively move your mop around to clean. Instead, a spin-electric mop provides a spinning motion that cleans with each pass.

A spin-electric mop automatically pushes the head forward, so there’s very little effort required to clean floors. Plus, they can be corded or cordless depending on your needs.

For example, this Bissell SpinWave is a corded spin-electric mop.

PROS:
  • Wetness control
  • The floor dries fast and remains streak-free
  • Powerful cleaning
CONS:
  • Battery limited time
  • Difficult to reach under furniture

10. Vacuums Mops Combo

Vacuums Mops Combo

A vacuum mops combo combines two tools into one. It’s an electric mop with the suction of a vacuum. So you can vacuum your floors while you’re mopping them.

This type of mop can save you a lot of time. You don’t have to worry about vacuuming your floors before you mop. You can get straight into doing both. Plus, there’s no need to stop cleaning floors to wring or change your dirty water.

They don’t provide the same level of suction as a traditional vacuum cleaner. However, they do provide an effective clean for small messes that you would normally need to vacuum before mopping. Plus, they don’t leave your floor too wet.

For example, this Bissell Crosswave is a vacuum cleaner and mop.

PROS:
  • Saves time
  • Don’t leave the floor wet
  • Easy to use
CONS:
  • May warp unsealed floor
  • Shorter lifespan

11. Robot Mops

Robot Mop

Robot mops are similar to robot vacuums. They are high-tech machines that provide hands-free mopping. They have a mopping pad and spray feature that cleans autonomously so you don’t have to.

Robotic mops have high-tech capabilities such as self-programmed cleaning times, voice control, as well as smartphone compatibility.

These units are small and compact so they can fit under furniture and other tight spaces. But because of this, they tend to have small tank capacities.

Some models also include a spot-cleaning feature for quick clean-ups.

A robot mop is great for handling all the work so you don’t have to. However, they don’t have deep cleaning capabilities. They’re great for everyday light-cleaning, but you will still have to deep-clean your floors with a regular mop in between sessions.

PROS:
  • Automatic scheduled cleaning
  • Save times
CONS:
  • Often get stuck
  • Need to vacuum proof the floor

Time To Mop!

Finding the right mopping solution for your floors can feel like a challenge. With so many options on the market, it’s hard to know which one is best for you. But, now that you know what each type of mop has to offer, you’ll be able to find the right pick for your home.

The right mop can save you a lot of time and effort keeping your floors looking clean and shiny.

Whether you have hardwood floors, laminate, or carpet, it’s important to find a mop that’s suitable for your floors. Remember that each type of mop works better on certain surfaces. Think about the pros and cons of each type of mop before you choose. And consider the right features for your floors.

With these tips in mind, you can enjoy tiles that shine after every clean.

Please feel free to leave us a comment below if you enjoyed this article! Or, help out a friend and share this article with them too.

Jeneva Aaron

About the Author

Jeneva Aaron

Jeneva has over years of passion for home decorating and cleaning. She is the founder and CEO of thehousewire.com where she provides honest and objective reviews on home and cleaning products.

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