Just got a steam mop (read on for a riveting review! lol)


Elite Member & Kitchen Overlord
Feb 14, 2004
O-Cedar brand: $70


Comes with 2 reusable microfiber pads. Package says each pad is machine-washable (no bleach, no fabric softener) & can be re-used up to 25 times. Spare 2-pack is $9:



I previously used a really nice O-Cedar manual mopping system:


For that system, I made homemade cleaning fluid (hot water, rubbing alcohol, vinegar, liquid dish soap) & it made the floors feel really nice under my bare feet, unlike Swiffer's WetJet, which always felt tacky. The bucket on this system is really neat - it has a footpedal to operate a spinning cleaning system for the mop head, which is similar to a salad spinner. The mop head was also triangle-ish, which made getting into corners & under countertop indentations really easy. The bucket was a very sturdy unit, but sadly, it was no match for multiple small children sitting inside of it. Thus I opted for a steam mop to replace it! No cleaning fluid required - just water!

Operation is very simple:

1. The bottom triangle head has velcro. You just stick it right on the mop pad. That's it! They also include a triangle plastic rim that snaps over the bottom of the triangle head, if you want to steam your rugs or carpet. Have not tried that yet, probably won't as I just throw my bathroom & kitchen rugs in the washing machine & use a shampoo-vac for the carpeting once a month (worth investing in your own system if you have kids or pets, especially since you can get a decent one for like $130 instead of $600+ these days!).

2. Pour a cup or two of water into the tank (comes with a nice measuring cup). Simple twist-off cap up top on the unit.

3. Plug in, turn on, and allow 20 seconds to preheat. You'll see steam coming out of the mop pad when it's ready.

4. Just go back & forth slowly to cover the entire area in water. If you hit the right angle with your lights, you can see the water streak, so adjust your speed so that you're not going so fast that the water doesn't have a chance to fully-cover the floor. For any caked-on stuff, just let it sit on top of the mess for 30 second & then just kind of scrub away at it a little bit. I put up a shoe rack at the entrace of the house a few winters ago, so I don't have to worry about slush or mud getting track throughout the house, so if that is an issue for you, a regular mop may still be the way to go (or just use a damp towel as needed, perhaps). Note, recommend sweeping first before any kind of mopping, of course.

Overall, very easy to use. No chemicals required. Great results on laminate flooring. No cleaning formula to mix. The floors feel nicer on my homemade mop juice, but they feel absolutely fine on just water - not tacky or stickiness or anything. My mop juice formula has a bit of a silky (non-slippery) feel. Although the downside is that the vinegar is smelly, so your house stinks for a few hours. With the steam mop, it's just water, nothing else in it, so nothing to have to mix up yourself & no strong smell.

Unboxing was easy. Unwrap everything. The central piece is the water tank & power cord. Plug the top handle into it. Push the bottom triangle head into the central piece (hard). Then just put the velcro triangle head on the mop pad. Fill with water. Plug in, turn on, preheat for 20 seconds. That's about it! It has a little resistance when pushing (because it's not a broom), but nothing hard - pushing a vacuum cleaner is harder! The triangle head is very nice because you can easily swivel it & get all of the areas you want to cover really easily. Pretty lightweight unit too, overall.

I think a good combination of kitchen & hard-floor cleaning equipment would be:

1. Hand broom & dust pan for small dry messes

2. Regular broom & dust pan (I have the O-Cedar kit, it has a nice rubbery lip on the dust pan for scooping dust in) for whole-room sweeping (or a robot vac)

3. Paper towels for small wet messes. Scoop it up & throw it out, then get some paper towels wet & wipe it clean, then dry it.

4. Steam mop for whole-room mopping.

My system going forward will be:

1. Small messes = hand broom & dust pan for dry ones, paper towels & water for wet ones

2. Daily sweeping

3. Weekly steam-mopping

4. Throw steam-mop pad in with the non-softener laundry run every week

I like the approachability of the steam mop. It's not a huge chore to use...just fill with water, preheat, and mop. Easy to slide around because it's not heavy, and the triangle-swivel head goes everywhere I want it to go. The light weight & swivel-triangle head are also nice because all of my bathrooms are really small & have tile flooring, so the only spot I can't fit it in behind is on the side & rear of the toilet, so I just use some Chlorox wipes for those.

I'm all about setting up a solid system to support a chore chart for home cleaning & then simply doing it as the calendar reminders pop up & never, ever thinking about it again, and so far this has proven to be a pretty solid tool for my home maintenance toolkit. There are cheapie models out, and there are models two or three times as expensive as this one available, but after reading & watching a bunch of reviews, this seemed like the perfect model to get. No complaints so far, after day one!
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Elite Member & Kitchen Overlord
Feb 14, 2004


Diamond Member
Jan 1, 2005
Good to know. My hardwood floors always feel tacky after cleaning them (Bruce hardwood cleaner).

Aren't you supposed to not use a steam mop with hardwood floors, though?


Elite Member & Kitchen Overlord
Feb 14, 2004
Good to know. My hardwood floors always feel tacky after cleaning them (Bruce hardwood cleaner).

Aren't you supposed to not use a steam mop with hardwood floors, though?

Apparently yes:


I have laminate flooring, although they have a note in that article about that too:
The World Floor Covering Association (WFCA) has a similar warning: “We cannot find a manufacturer of either laminate flooring or hardwood flooring that will recommend the use of Steam Cleaning equipment on their floors.”

Sounds like a risk. Guess I'll have to find out long-term, for science! Haha.

Try my floor juice recipe if you want to stick with a traditional mop: hot water, rubbing alcohol, vinegar, dish soap (just a small squirt). I don't really have any specific ratios, but do like a gallon of water, a cup of vinegar, a quarter cup of rubbing alcohol, and a few drops of liquid dish soap & swirl that around to start out with. The soap helps it clean (too much & you'll just end up with bubbles), as does the vinegar, the rubbing alcohol helps it evaporate, and the rest is just cleaning water. Feels nice under your feet instead of feeling tacky.
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Golden Member
Feb 28, 2008
Good tip! Our tap water is kinda nasty to begin with, so I should look into that, haha. Do you use like a gallon of bottled water or something?

Do you use the accessories on your steam mop for cleaning stuff other than the floors?
I just get a gallon of distilled from the grocery store. I think it's 99 cents or so. Lasts about a month for me.

I haven't really tried the attachments for it other than the scrub brush for some grout in the kitchen. It did clean it up a bit but I think I need something a bit stronger.

I have used my steam mop on our hardwood floors without issue. They are sealed and I use it on the "dust" setting which doesn't output much water.