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Comparing Steam Mop and Wet-Dry Vacuum Cleaners

In recent years, the market has seen a variety of cleaning tools, such as steam mops, vacuum cleaners, and floor-cleaning robots. Cleaning the floor basically only involves two steps – sweeping and mopping – so what are the differences between all these cleaning tools?

We should figure out the problems each tool is designed to solve, its effectiveness, as well as the situations it is most suitable for.

In this article, based on our experience using various tools for over a month, we will share our insights about this issue and hopefully provide some help to you.

Steam Mop – Honest Reviews and Advice

steam mop review

If you have kids or pet, cleanliness is important to you. The steam mop is a perfect tool to keep your floor clean. It uses hot steam to kill off bacteria, germs, and allergens on the floors, and it also helps you dissolve dirt and grease.

Steam mops are capable of deep cleaning but do not use any harsh chemicals so it is safe for both people and pets.

Steam mops come with a water tank for heating the water into high-temperature steam that is then released through the bottom of the mop. The cloth can be flipped forward and backward.

  • If you use this side to mop the floor, the steam will be sprayed on the cloth, increasing its temperature and humidity, making it ideal for the overall cleaning of the floor.

shark steam mop

  • If you flip the cloth over, the steam can be directed toward a certain area to soften stubborn stains.

shark dual pad steam mop

Our honest using experience

Under the high-temperature effect, some stains can be softened and effectively cleaned without the need for detergents, making it much more efficient than cold-water mopping.

The hot mist also evaporates rapidly, drying the floor within 2-3 seconds of being mopped with no water residues left behind.

High-temperature steam has been reported to be capable of sterilizing surfaces; however, according to our experience with such products, there is a potential for temperature loss during the spraying process as it contacts both cloth and surface.

Though we have not tested this ourselves, it appears to be an issue that applies across products in its category.

The problem you need to take into consideration:

The water tank capacity is not large and for a home with three bedrooms, two living rooms, and a kitchen, it may require two or three refills of water after mopping.

steam mop advantages

It is better to use pure water to avoid any residues in the pipes or the tank. The cord length is also quite long, so multiple sockets need to be switched when moving between different areas. So the wireless steam mops are the best choice.

If you have a steam mop and a wet-dry vacuum, no traditional mopping will be necessary basically.

Households with babies and children who are accustomed to crawling on the floor or going barefoot can benefit from this cleaning method, as it gives them an extra level of hygiene even if it is not very time-efficient.

Advantages of a steam mop: The high temperature can easily remove dirt. It is a more advanced existence than a regular mop and is suitable for households that want to achieve barefoot freedom.

Limitations: To upgrade the mopping experience, one needs to accompany it with other cleaning tools and get their hands dirty.

Most of the models on the market are corded, so when mopping different areas, different sockets need to be switched back and forth; there is a certain weight that makes mopping slightly tiring.

Wet Dry Vacuum – Honest Reviews and Advice

wet and dry vacuum for stains

Wet-dry vacuum cleaners are ideal for cleaning larger surfaces, such as carpets and rugs. They are equipped with a motorized brush head that helps remove dust, dirt, pet hair and other debris from the surface of the carpet or rug.

The suction power of the wet-dry vacuum cleaner is strong enough to pick up even the smallest particles. It also has filters that trap dust and dirt, preventing it from being blown out of the vacuum cleaner.

The wet-dry vacuum cleaner is also capable of picking up liquid spills, which makes it convenient for cleaning hardwood floors or tiles.

A wet-dry vacuum combines both vacuuming and mopping functions. Vacuum cleaners are only able to clean dry debris off the ground while robotic mops can clean up liquid on surfaces but have difficulty with sticky substances such as porridge, rice or noodles.

Wet-dry vacuum can handle all of these different types of messes at once.

Our honest using experience

Here are the solutions that a wet-dry vacuum performs perfectly:

wet and dry vacuum

In the kitchen, where oil stains, condiments, and soup residues often remain on the floor;

In the bathroom after taking a shower, when the floor is wet. I used to scrape it dry with a squeegee but found that cleaning was limited and tough stains were not easy to remove.

With a wet-dry vacuum, I can get rid of the water and quickly make the surface dry and clean even for stubborn marks;

For mixed wet and dry debris, it does work quite well.

The problem you need to take into consideration:

It takes effort and time. I used to use a robotic mop, and a wet-dry vacuum threw me back into the battlefield of cleaning the entire house.

To clean the house thoroughly, I need to go slow in order to give enough time for the brush to collect the dirt. For an office of 70-80 square meters, basic cleaning requires at least 20 minutes; for a 100 square meters house, it takes close to 1 hour if done thoroughly due to heavier cleaning needs in the kitchen and bathroom.

Also, the machine doesn’t cut long strands of hair before sucking them in, so they often get tangled up on the brush which then requires manual maintenance and removal of hair.

Advantages of a wet-day vacuum: It has both sweeping and mopping functions to handle the both dry and wet waste.

Limitations: It requires manual operation, cleaning the parts is quite painful, it is not suitable for cleaning under sofas and beds due to limited space access, and is not suitable for large area applications in homes.


A wet-dry vacuum is an ideal tool for cleaning floors, but it requires a bit of extra effort and time. It’s great for people who need to clean both dry and wet messes on their floors and those who can commit the necessary time and energy to get the job done right.

If you want us to review other floor cleaners, please leave the commons!

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