Best Dry Mops

Updated September 2019
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We may earn a commission if you purchase a product through our links.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
We may earn a commission if you purchase a product through our links.
Bottom Line
Pros
Cons
How we decided

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

25 Models Considered
6 Hours Researched
1 Experts Interviewed
213 Consumers Consulted
Zero products received from manufacturers.

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

Why trust BestReviews?
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
We may earn a commission if you purchase a product through our links.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We may earn a commission if you purchase a product through our links.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
We may earn a commission if you purchase a product through our links.

Buying guide for best dry mops

Last Updated September 2019

The dry mop is the unsung hero of the utility closet: a no-frills cleaning tool that hangs quietly on its peg but is ready to go the moment it’s needed. Often referred to as a dust mop, the dry mop’s flat, rectangular design makes it far more useful than the old rag mops of yesteryear. Any non-carpeted space in the home can benefit from a dry mop, but it really shines when applied to its biggest targets: hardwood and tile.

Simple though they may be, choosing the right dry mop is still a bit of a chore — especially if your home has different types of flooring. The type of handle that would work best for you is but one decision to make. There are other decisions, like the type of cleaning pad you will need. This depends on the type of mop you buy: there are terrycloth options, microfiber options, and disposable options.

Fortunately, BestReviews has the details you need to make sure you’re purchasing the best dry mop for your needs. Read on for our product buying guide.

Dust mops do not work well on dirty floors with a lot of debris. Instead, use a broom to sweep up large debris before dust mopping.

Key considerations

Effectiveness

Dry mops are designed to trap dust, fine particles, hair, sand, and other small debris. A pad made of disposable material or reusable cloth is attached to the mop head and pushed across the floor, where it swipes up small particles and pushes larger particles ahead of it.

Only dry flooring should be cleaned with a dry mop. If the pad gets wet, it will be harder to move across the floor. Notably, dry mops are not very effective at picking up stuck-on dirt. You would need to return to stubborn spots later with a cloth and spray cleaner.

Finish

It’s also important to know what you can and can’t use on certain types of flooring. For example, a hardwood floor that has a wax finish needs to be cleaned in a different way than a wood floor with a different type of finish. Even laminate floors, which are pretty tough overall, can be vulnerable to scratches from dirty dust mops. Check the flooring manufacturer’s website to learn what dry mop cleaning pad is best to use with your specific type of floor.

EXPERT TIP

Run a dust mop over a dry floor to pick up dust and debris before — or instead of — wet mopping the surface.


Staff  | BestReviews

Features

Dry mops are pretty straightforward cleaning devices, but it’s essential to choose a model with features that will make cleaning comfortable and that won’t fall apart with frequent use. Look for these features when shopping for a dry mop.

Handle

Dry mop handles tend to be lightweight and are often adjustable for a comfortable grip. In many instances, the top of the handle features a hole or a metal clip that can be used to hang the mop when it’s not in use.

Swivel

Located at the base of the mop, the swivel is usually part of the entire attachment assembly and assists in turning the mop head more easily.

Head

This piece at the far end of the mop connects the handle and swivel to the cleaning pad. The shape of the mop head is usually rectangular and sized to fit cleaning cloths or pads.

Brackets

The brackets connect the cleaning pad to the head of the mop. On smaller dry mops, these may be simple rubber “window” inlets that hold the corners of the pad. Larger commercial dry mops may have metal brackets to securely attach the dry mop head and clips to hold a cloth cleaning pad in place.

Cleaning pads

Depending on the type of dry mop you use, cleaning pads or cloths are available in configurations chosen by the manufacturer. You may need to buy a specific brand of dry mop to use the type of cleaning pad or cloth that you want. However, not all brands can fit different cleaning pads interchangeably.

Here are a few types of available cleaning pads.

  • Disposable: When sweeping a disposable dry mop pad across a smooth, dry surface, an electrostatic charge builds up, attracting dust particles to the pad. Today’s popular polyester fiber pad was introduced in the U.S. by Swiffer but is available from other manufacturers and sized for different mop brands.
  • Terrycloth: Often used on larger mops, terrycloth is a versatile material that is reusable, washable in hot water, and suitable for both dry and wet mopping. The cleaning pad may be fringed to trap larger debris before it reaches the pad.
  • Microfiber: Microfiber is a reusable cloth woven of very thin fibers that trap dust and debris without scratching floors. This delicate cloth is especially desirable when cleaning hardwood. Microfiber cleaning pads can be washed and reused at least 100 times.
EXPERT TIP

Use a dry mop with a microfiber pad to soak up excess water after damp mopping hardwood, tile, or linoleum. Change the pad before dry mopping other areas.


Staff  | BestReviews

Dry mop prices

Dry mops for home use can be found, with disposable refills included, for $14 to $20. However, you can count on paying a bit more for purpose-built mops, such as microfiber hardwood floor mops. These run between $22 and $35. If you’re shopping for a mop for commercial use, the price will be a bit higher. The large dry mops seen in businesses and other public places may cost from $35 to $50.

Tips

Effective cleaning involves more than just the right tools. A planned, thoughtful approach to cleaning tasks will maximize the tool’s effectiveness and may translate into less cleaning time for the user.

  • Map your cleaning route. Dry mop your floor in sections rather than trying to run it around the entire floor (as fun as that may be). Shake out or change the pad after completing each section. On particularly dusty floors, you may need to shake out the dry mop’s cleaning pad (or change its disposable pad) even more often. This is done so excess dust doesn’t get ground into the flooring.
  • Keep the floor dry. Make sure hardwood floors are completely dry before using a dust mop on them.
  • Follow manufacturer washing and drying instructions. This will enhance the lifespan of the mop.
EXPERT TIP

Microfiber reusables and disposable polyester electrostatic pads are best to use on finished wood and other flooring that may scratch or dull easily.


Staff  | BestReviews

Other products we considered

Are you looking for other recommendations? We also like the Jinclean Cotton Mop. Its 24-inch-wide rectangular head and reusable terry cloth are sized just right for users who have lots of smooth flooring to clean.

The Casabella Basics Flexible Microfiber Floor Duster attracts our attention thanks to its budget-priced, fluffy microfiber cleaning pad. Though you won’t pay much for this mop, it’s advised that you vacuum particularly dirty areas before mopping.

Lastly, the Turbo Microfiber Mop Floor Cleaning System works well with so many floor types that we find it impossible not to mention. Customers give lots of positive feedback about its effectiveness, too. However, it’s a pricier dry mop that some may view more as an industrial tool than a home cleaning tool.

Most “spray mop” models double as either dry mops or damp mops. This versatility makes them an ideal choice for kitchens and entry areas that need deeper cleaning.

FAQ

Q. I was told to only dry mop my unsealed hardwood floor, but there are spots I can’t seem to remove with my dry mop. What can I do?
A.
After dry mopping to pick up dust and other debris, dip a microfiber cleaning cloth in cool water and gently rub the spot until it comes up. You could also try a soft-bristled cleaning brush or a clean, damp toothbrush if the wood grain has deeply absorbed the material. Let the spot air dry completely so that it returns to the same color as the rest of the wood floor.

Q. My floors collect a lot of dust, and I have to dry mop more than once a day. Why is this happening?
A.
A room may be exceedingly dusty for several reasons. If it’s dry and dusty outside, that dust can make its way inside through open windows or poorly sealed windows. Older homes with crumbling plaster walls or ceilings can generate more dust than newer homes. Dust may also collect on other items in the room and drift downward.

This buildup can be taken care of by dusting the entire room before you mop. Start with the highest object in the room, such as a ceiling fan, lamp, or bookcase, and dust every item in descending order. Sweep up the dust bunnies that fall to the ground, and let the rest settle for a few minutes before dry mopping the floor. Dusting the entire room several times per week may drastically reduce floor dust.

Q. Should I dry mop my bamboo floor?
A.
Natural bamboo flooring is especially vulnerable to scratching and staining and should be kept as clean as possible, so dry mopping regularly is an effective practice. You can also damp-mop periodically and dry with a microfiber cloth. Scuffs or marks can be cleaned using a damp microfiber cloth or by rubbing lightly with a tennis ball.

The team that worked on this review
  • Eliza
    Eliza
    Production Manager
  • Melinda
    Melinda
    Web Producer
  • Samantha
    Samantha
    Writer

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