March 31, 2021

DIY Mop and Bucket Cleaner

My favorite way to wash floors is with a microfiber mop and a spray bottle but I know that there are times when a mop and bucket is a better way to wash floors OR maybe you prefer washing floors with a mop and bucket. There are all sorts of mops and buckets that you can purchase in stores and online, I like this one for its ease and clean bucket feature. Use what you have or what you prefer.

I like to use a mop and bucket for deep cleaning tile – perfect for spring or deep cleaning. This tile is in our mudroom – it gets dirty quickly with shoes being dropped here and with dog dishes. It definitely needed a good mopping – look at that dirty water!

Choose the best DIY formula for your floors and get to mopping, or my preference, save the mopping for Thursday because it’s Floor Washing Day.

Please note: If you have marble, granite, or travertine tile you should not use vinegar, lemon, or anything acidic to clean them because the acid will etch the stone. Steam cleaners work well as does the soap-based floor recipe in this post.

SOAP-BASED FLOOR CLEANING SOLUTION (no rinse necessary): 

This is what I recommend using on hardwoods, but I prefer the method using this recipe with a microfiber mop.

  • 1 gallon warm water
  • 1 teaspoon castile soap or Sal Suds

VINEGAR-BASED FLOOR CLEANING SOLUTION:

  • 1/2 cup white vinegar
  • 1 gallon of warm water

LAMINATE FLOOR CLEANING SOLUTION:

The vinegar cleans and the rubbing alcohol aids in the drying and adds a sanitizing component. The combination is great for getting those floors perfectly clean. Laminate and water are not a good combination so you’ll want to work in small sections with your mop and bucket and dry as you go.

Mix equal parts of:

  • white vinegar
  • rubbing alcohol
  • water

HEAVY DUTY TILE OR CEMENT FLOOR CLEANER:

  • 1/4 cup Borax
  • 1 gallon hot water
  • 5 drops lemon essential oil
  • 5 drops orange essential oil

Mix the Borax, water and essential oils in a mop bucket, stirring to dissolve. Mop as you normally do. Rinsing is usually not required. If your floors are extra dirty, you can add a drop or two of castile or dish soap to help cut the dirt. You may want to have a bucket of clean water on the side to rinse instead of using the cleaning bucket water. This will help eliminate streaking.

If I’m washing tile floors and have grout that needs a little more of a deep cleaning, I work in sections with a grout brush, hot water and dish or castile soap and a little sprinkle of Oxygen Whitener. Then I wash the floors after giving them a good scrub.

This is the mop/bucket system I have – it looks like it’s not available in the blue, but this is the same one, just in green. It works really well and has a small storage footprint. To wring it out you just flip a clip on the handle and put it in the metal side and spin. Easy peasy.

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