Wet/Dry Floor Cleaning Systems

    iRobot ScoobaI’m a clean freak who is always looking for the next best thing in floor cleaning gadgets. I’ve tried a few products and I’m sure I will try more. The best of all worlds is a product that will both dry and wet mop your floors, no matter what type of material your floor is.

    Here are a few items on the market that will fit a variety of budgets or levels of fussiness.

    Starting Simple and Inexpensive

    If you're tired of brooms or getting on your hands and knees to scrub your floors, try the O-Cedar Pro-Mist, a bucket-free wet/dry option for basic, simple cleaning of most floor surfaces. At an easy-to-swallow price of about $25, the Pro-Mist can be used dry or wet, has a durable microfiber pad that may be washed and reused as many as 100 times, and best of all, allows you to use any cleaning product to clean your floors, including plain water. The Pro-Mist also comes with a pad you can use up to five times before throwing away. Because it has a flat cleaning surface, I imagine if you have deep crevices in your tile, it might not be as effective.

    Using the cleaning solution of your choice (not necessarily an option on all wet/dry floor cleaning systems), you control the amount of mist sprayed in front of the pad. The Pro-Mist is designed to be able to clean in tight spaces such as around a toilet or under chairs. Pro-Mist can be purchased at most big box department stores and Tru-Value Hardware. If you have wood floors, Pro-Mist gives you a way to control the amount of wetness more accurately to preserve your surface.

    Taking Wet/Dry Floor Cleaning Systems up a Notch

    Many of the major vacuum manufacturers offer one or more electric wet/dry floor cleaning systems. Hoover, most notably has a number of products that vacuum, and wet scrub floor surfaces. No pun intended, but I got sucked in by the idea that a $175-$250 machine could clean my floors better than anything else. Besides the price, you have to consider the need for electricity, occasional filter purchase, and specific cleaning solutions. Manufacturer’s recommendations state that any cleaning solutions other than their products will damage the machine.

    The electric wet/dry floor cleaning systems clean pretty well. However, you have to take the machine apart (not easy on my model) to clean it each time you use it, especially if you have pets who shed in the house. Newer models come with more attachments to clean tighter spaces and suck up water more readily. Most are dual-tank so that dirty water never goes back onto your floor.

    Robotic Wet/Dry Floor Cleaning Systems

    There are several interesting products on the market, such as the iRobot Scooba. These all have GPS-like sensors that allow them to clean most floor surfaces without falling down stairs or bumping into anything. The small, robotic cleaners (similar to Roomba) will run for about three hours before needing to be charged. They can even sense how hard to scrub, and they adjust for carpets. The iRobot Scooba functions with either commercial or homemade floor cleaners or bleach. 

    Robotic floor cleaning systems can be great for the elderly or disabled – or if you just like nifty new gadgets.

    Updated May 17, 2018.

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