How to Clean Steam Mop Pads (Easy and Fast)

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how to clean steam mop pads

So, you’ve cleaned your floors with your steam mop. You look at the cloth that just picked up all of that nasty dirt from the floor. Your home is clean, which is great!

However, with an eco-friendly steam mop, you don’t throw the pads away. Now you’re left wondering how to clean steam mop pads. The process is simple; just follow these few steps.

Key Takeaways

Here are the steps to take:

  • Soak in warm water, a little laundry detergent, and baking soda. Rinse thoroughly – and avoid bleach!
  • You can also put steam mop pads in the washing machine if not too dirty.
  • Hang dry your mop pads on the line and check for holes when fully dry. 
  • Store where moisture will evaporate.

Washing the Steam Mop Pads

washing the steam mop pad

Remember never to use bleach or softeners on steam mop pads.

Bleach can weaken the fabrics and wear them out much faster. Fabric softeners leave a residue on the microfiber pads that hinder their ability to pick up some of the smallest particles of dust and dirt.

Furthermore, if you use softeners too heavily, they can leave excess on your steam mop pads that will later end up on your floors. The result can look dull instead of the nice polish you’re going for.

The best way to care for your steam mop pad when you clean them is to soak the steam mop pads in warm water, baking soda, and a small amount of laundry detergent will clean them deep down.

Advice from Expert: One thing I always swear by is soaking those steam mop pads in warm water, detergent, and baking soda before attempting to wash them. This strategy breaks down any tough dirt or grime before the wash which can make a bigger improvement in cleanliness than you might think!

  1. Mix the water, a small amount of laundry detergent (depending on how many you’re washing and how big your bucket is, between a few tablespoons and a ¼ cup of laundry detergent should be good), and a tablespoon of baking soda. Soak them for at least 15 minutes before
  2. Rinse your steam mop pads thoroughly after they soak. You can run them under warm water, dip them in clean rinsing water for a few rounds, or put them in the washer on the rinse only cycle to remove the detergent.
  3. If your steam mop pads are not excessively dirty or you’re short on time, you can put them in the washing machine. Select the hand-wash/delicate cycle to prolong the life of the pads, with a minimal amount of detergent. Giving them an extra rinse cycle to remove every last bit of soap is a good idea. Remember, do not to use fabric softener.

Advice from Expert: I can’t stress enough the importance of additional rinse cycles when you’re washing your steam mop pads. I’ve found it’s best not to leave any chemical residues that could potentially damage your floors on your next cleaning. Trust me, it’s worth the extra time. 

Drying and Storing the Steam Mop Pads

drying and storing steam mop pads

Now that the pads are clean, you’ll need to dry and store them.

  • If you have a place to hang-dry your steam mop pads, line drying is an excellent idea. It’s eco-friendly and will usually treat your pads more delicately. If you do not have a place to line-dry or lay them flat for drying, you can use your dryer. Do not use a dryer sheet with steam mop pads. Tumble them on low heat.
  • Once your pads are clean and dry, inspect them to be sure there are no holes or tears before their next use. The steam mop pads are not only for picking up dirt but protecting surfaces from being scratched. So, if you see any holes or rips, they need to be repaired, or the pads replaced.
  • Store the pads in a clean, dry place where any residual moisture from the cleaning process will be able to evaporate. A damp area can induce mildew growth on your steam mop pads.

Advice from the Expert: Proper storage of your steam mop pads is just as critical as cleaning! I’ve learned the hard way that a poorly stored pad can be a breeding ground for mildew – yuck! Store them in a breathable bag or an open area where airflow’s sufficient. Trust me, your nose will thank you next time you reach for them.

Clean and Clear!

The steam mop pads are now clean and ready for their next use. You can repeat this process until the pads wear out and need to be replaced (or make your own). Best of luck!

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Nora has more than 5 years experience in the floor covering industry, acquiring vast knowledge about installation and material selection. She now enjoys working as a writer and an interior decorator. Her work has been featured in The Spruce, Homes & Gardens, Southern Living and Real Homes. See full biography here.

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