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Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary doesn’t have an entry for "Swiffer." Still, I’ve been "swiffering" for about a decade.
But recently, my Wet Jet's handle broke. It simply doesn't hold up to pressure anymore.
Muscle memory told me to just replace my broken Wet Jet with another one. My bank account told me otherwise. The Wet Jet itself isn’t expensive. The refill pads, batteries and special cleaning solution that really add up. So, I opted to try my grandma’s approach to cleaning floors: a good old-fashioned mop and bucket combo.
I ordered the best-selling mop on Amazon — the O-Cedar EasyWring Microfiber Spin Mop and Bucket Floor Cleaning System. It has more than 6,500 customer reviews and 4.3 out of 5 stars. It's also approved by America's No. 1 cleaning expert, Don Aslett.
O-Cedar EasyWring Microfiber Spin Mop and Bucket Floor Cleaning System, $30, Amazon
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For comparison, the Swiffer Wet Jet has 1,400 reviews and a 4-star rating. The number I was most concerned with, though, was the price. At $30 for the entire O-Cedar system — collapsible mop handle, machine-washable reusable cloth head and bucket with pedal-activated spin technology — and free two-day shipping thanks to Amazon Prime, I was sold.
It's easy to assemble
Assembling the mop was so simple I didn’t even need to consult the instructions that came with it. I simply extended the pole, which starts out about the length of two bananas, and popped on the triangle-shaped head. The bucket, which holds six liters of water, comes in one piece. All I needed to contribute was floor cleaner.
It mops up dirt fast
The same week the mop came, my 10-year-old neighbors were doing odd jobs to raise money. So, I hired them to mop my laminate floors, which my 150-pound Leonberger had decided to paint with his muddy paw prints. It was the kind of mess that would have required at least three Swiffer pads.
The mop is lightweight and comfortable
At just over 5 pounds, the mop is light enough that the girls had no trouble pushing it around. The “telescoping pole” is adjustable so they could get it to a comfortable height.
The hands-free wringing system is game-changing
However, the pedal was by far their favorite feature. There’s something so satisfying about wringing out a mop, and this hands-free method is incredibly efficient. (One Amazon reviewer even jokes about using it as a foot-activated salad spinner.)
It's a compact, convenient system
Personally, I love that the entire mop bucket fits in my kitchen sink — and I don’t have an over-sized sink by any means — so I can easily fill and empty it. The microfiber head dries faster than the rope-style mops my mom used to use and, since the handle collapses, it’s compact enough to fit in a tight utility closet.
There's only one drawback
What I’m not crazy about is that there’s not a separate compartment for the dirty water. So, when I do my two-car garage or my dog has a field day at the river and then runs into my house, I have to dump and refill more often than I’d like to or use a separate bucket for clean water.
I’d pay another $10 to have the “dual bucket technology” that other mops like the Big Boss InstaMop advertise.
It ends up cheaper than my old Swiffer
The manufacturer recommends replacing the microfiber head every three to six months. A package of two replacement heads costs $12. So, even if I’m on the three-month program, it ends up cheaper than Wet Jet pad replacements which cost me about $21 every three months.
Plus, with this mop I don’t need to buy batteries and I can choose to use any cleaning solution.
I think the hardest adjustment of trading my Wet Jet for the O-Cedar will be getting used to saying "mopping." Swiffering does sound more sophisticated. But if there's anything I'll sacrifice class for, it's more cash in my pocket.