How To Clean Steam Mop Pads

In the world of household cleaning, one advancement holds a place in many people’s hearts. That’s right, we’re talking about steam mops. They can make your floor appear pristine with relatively little effort required.

The one downside to these machines is that the pads that are used to wipe the floor get dirty so quickly. When the pad is dirty, you don’t have a hope of cleaning the floor until it shines.

How To Clean Steam Mop Pads

The mop pads can be a nightmare to clean, and with this being recommended after every use it can quickly become a burden.

Fear not, because we are here to help you clean your mop pads perfectly every time.

Why is cleaning steam mop pads important?

As we have already mentioned, a dirty mop pad will not result in a clean floor. If the mop pad is slightly dirty then it is unlikely to pick up any new grime from your flooring.

If it is really dirty, then you may just end up spreading the dirt around rather than removing it. In some cases, using a dirty mop head can even result in your floor looking worse than before!

It is also important to clean your mop pads from a microbial level. If you allow the dirt and contaminants from your floor to sit on your mop pad, bacteria will begin to build.

This bacterial growth can reach dangerous levels if left unchecked, which could cause health issues down the line. 

Hand washing

In a large bowl, combine a teaspoon of baking soda or laundry detergent with a decent amount of hot water. Swish the liquid around to combine and then drop in your steam mop pads.

Allow them to soak in this bowl for about 25 minutes before pulling them out and rinsing under running water. 

For a more intense clean, you can use a few tablespoons to ¼ cup of laundry detergent and a tablespoon of baking soda in the water.

We do not advise using a fabric softener or bleach on the steam mop pads as they can cause irreparable damage. Bleach weakens the structural integrity of the fibers, meaning that their lifespan is greatly reduced.

Fabric softener always leaves a filmy residue on the surface of materials. In the case of mop pads, this inhibits their ability to collect dirt.

Washing machine

To ensure the bacteria has been killed off properly, you should use a wash cycle that is at a minimum temperature of 160 degrees Fahrenheit.

This cycle must last at least 25 minutes to be sure the bacterial growth has been killed.

Soak and wash

Many people struggle to get their pads looking clean and fresh. In cases such as this, a more intense cleaning routine is required. The laundry detergent brand RockinGreen is liked by many for this method.

To a large bowl of hot water, add 3 tablespoons of this detergent powder. Add in your steam mops pads and allow them to soak for anywhere between 20 and 60 minutes. 

Place the damp pads into your washing machine and run them through on a delicate cycle. Rinse twice once this has been completed, and then hang the pads up to dry. 


If there are any particularly bad stains, you can apply some OxyClean directly onto the worst areas and scrub this in with a toothbrush prior to soaking. 

Place 3 scoops of OxyClean powder into a sink filled with 2-3 inches of hot water. Add in the steam mop pads and leave them here to soak for a few hours.

Scrub with a toothbrush and rinse well. 

Drying the steam mop pads

Some mop pads are safe to tumble dry on a lower setting, although this is not true of all of them.

If you are going to use a tumble dryer, we recommend placing them on a low heat and a gentle cycle. Do not use a dryer sheet with them.

Check your manufacturer’s instructions, and if in doubt, air dry them. This is a more eco-friendly way to do it and means that damage to the pads is minimized.

Storing the steam mop pads

You should only place your pads away for storage once they are fully dried.

If they are left slightly damp this can lead to the growth of mold and mildew. 

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