Steam mop or Floor mate?

xoxosmomMay 13, 2008

Help me decide which one to buy. I have 1500 square feet of porcelain tile. I have a scooba that I really like to use but I would like to get something to use weekly to really get my tile clean then use the scooba as maintenance.

I have a Bissel flip it. It never worked right but I liked that it sucked the dirty water up, so I would lug out the mop and bucket and then use the bissel to suck up the mop water. I want something easier. I want to plug it in and have it work.

I am looking at the floormate that was reviewed. But I am leery because of my flip it experience. Does this one really work as expected?

I also found a canister style steam cleaner. Euro Pro Shark Hard Surface Steam Cleaner. Does anyone have this one? I prefer the steam to come out of the mop head not in front.

Which one in your experience should I try?

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I bought both the Hoover Floormate and the Shark Steam Mop---ended up returning the Shark and keeping the Floormate. I found the steam mop took way too much muscle to push, and felt it didn't get the floor any cleaner than my Swiffer WetJet. The Floormate gets the floor very clean but has two disadvantages: 1) It's loud (you'll need to wear earplugs) and 2) it's kind of hard on the hands---you need to push a lever with your finger to release the cleaning solution onto the floor. That can get tiring when you have a lot of floor to do!

I would say neither gets the floor as clean as it would be if you got on your hands and knees and scrubbed it. However for those of us who can't/won't do that, the Floormate is a good choice.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2008 at 11:53PM
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I have a Floor Mate and I'm of two minds about it. It does work and like the previous poster said it is loud. It's also a bit cumbersome to setup, empty and then clean out after use. I find using a Vileda floor mop, the rectangular washable pad type, and the matching bucket for it faster.
If you buy the Floor Mate make sure you can return it easily just in case.

    Bookmark   May 14, 2008 at 12:18AM
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I have both..the floormate really scrubs the floors clean..but to me, it is a little time consuming to keep refilling the cleaning solution , and emptying the filled bucket.. at the end all the parts have to be washed and dried.. But, your floors are very clean for sure. The biggest down side is, after a year or so (depending how much it is used) it starts to lose itÂs sucking power to pick the water up. .I am on my 4th one in the past 6 years.. this last one and newest model has worked the bestÂ

The shark mop cleans well also, it is much faster and easier, but on some surfaces it is a little harder to push I use the shark for in between cleaning.. I use the FM once, maybe twice a week depending if I need a good scrub again. What you may want to consider is the Bona micro fiber mop and floor cleaners.. I also use this for a really fast floor clean up, when I do not feel like plugging inÂ.


    Bookmark   May 14, 2008 at 7:39AM
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1500 square feet is a lot of tile to be cleaning.

I am not personally familiar with either brand that you mention, but switching between a steamer and the scooba would mean that the steam mop is forever picking up the residue left by the cleaning solution from the scooba. Maybe that is a good thing, but it strikes me that steam cleaning works so well because when used exclusively, there is no residue.

Many people here seem happy with the various Shark products, but with so much floor space to clean, you need to make sure that the machine is large enough for the job.

I suggest that you do some reading about the steamers that are made in Italy rather than coming from China. Here is a link to a good overview of steamers. At the end, they have links to some of the high end models. Click on "Steam Cleaners Direct" - there is a lot of good info there.

Here is a link that might be useful: Steam Cleaner reviews

    Bookmark   May 14, 2008 at 8:09AM
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Thanks for all the help. I ended up picking up the red/white wide path Floormate yesterday afternoon. My floors were driving me nuts and I had to get something, I live in a very small town so my selection is limited. The only steamer available was the little lilac shark one and once I reviewed the instructions I realized that there was no way, one little cloth was going to do the job and if I was going to have to order more cloths it defeated the purpose of getting it. So that left the floormate. I cringed at the price and threw it in the cart.

I plan on using the Floormate again today (I didn't get a chance to do the whole house) but so far here is my review. It is big. It is loud. It is the same size as my vacuum and louder then the scooba which is pretty loud. The cleaning solutions tank is very small (like ree ree said), I had trouble with suction at the end because I didn't empty the dirty tank when I refilled the cleaning solution tank. I really like that all the pieces are big. easy to clean and disassemble when I was done cleaning the floor. I washed all the pieces off and laid them on my dryer to dry ( I ran out of time). The bissel flip it doesn't even compare. I think the floormate does a much better job all around. So far it is a keeper *knock on wood* with as much tile as I have I will have to wait to see how well we get along and report back later.

Thanks for the other mop rec's I will look into them.

    Bookmark   May 14, 2008 at 12:28PM
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I am so glad you went for the floor mate. I have two scoobas that I used to clean my 1400sq ft of tile/wood flooring. I also was looking for something to do a really good deep clean between scooba use. I tried the shark and found it to be too difficult to use on such a large area, and also did not do a good "deep" clean. It would be good for inbetween cleans, but that is what a scooba is for!

After using my floormate I have permanently docked both of my scoobas! I love how well the floor mate cleans. I don't find it any more difficult than a scooba to set up or take down. I think it is of the same weight as a vacuum. Yes it is loud, but not to the point of needing "ear plugs".

I actually enjoy cleaning my floors now, when I used to loathe it. If my kids spill their cereal I whip out the floor mate and it is not a problem. When spills dry on the floor, it is simple with one or two passes and it is completely gone!

I love my floor mate and could go on all day about it. I am glad you like yours too!

    Bookmark   May 15, 2008 at 12:21PM
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I must be doing something wrong ... after reading this, I too ran out and purchased the FM Wednesday. I did my kitchen tile and two rooms of hardwood. The kitchen still required some cleaning afterward. I used their solution and the special grout brush. The grout went untouched - maybe my grout is set to low for the brush to make good contact? And it didn't get up the small, dried orange juice spill (my test subject). My hardwoods didn't come necessarily clean either, though I changed to the other brush and cleaning soltuion. There were significant streaks and still quite a bit of dirt. I admit, my floors were dirty - with my pups bringing in some sand from the yard though. I filled the cleaning bin 3x and the suction bin was only 1/3 full of very dirty water. Seems like it should have pulled up more water than it did. Any suggestions? I'm a little sick over the purchase. It must be operator error, right?

    Bookmark   May 19, 2008 at 2:36PM
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one thing to make sure of is, make sure the filter is fitted properly..that could be one problem..the other thing to watch for , the collection and fill 'buckets' make sure those are properly in place as well..being brand new, the machime should be sucking up much more water than that.. when the collection bucket is will not suck anymore and you will hear a difference in the 'pitch' of the FM ..try it again and make sure everything is in place..
hope this helps (and if not, there maybe something wrong with the unit ..
let us know

    Bookmark   May 19, 2008 at 5:28PM
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thanks Ree - I'll give it another try this weekend and check to make sure everything is "in place". I was wondering if it didn't draw up the water very well on my wood floors because they are not 100% smooth?? They are old wood and have some cupping. It's not obvious while standing or walking on it, but when I'm on my hands-n-knees, I can feel that the edges are a bit raised.... would that break the seal on the vacuum and keep it from drawing up the water? Course, on tile floors, the grout lines would simulate even a more extreme conditon - so maybe that's not the case anyway....

    Bookmark   May 20, 2008 at 8:57AM
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it may not suck all the water up on floors that are not 'even'..but to just have the collection bucket a 1/3 sounds more like what I explained above..give it a try again, and let me know how it worked this time around.. my fingers are crossed the problem is solved..

    Bookmark   May 20, 2008 at 2:09PM
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Ree --- yeah! It worked much better this time. Like you said, I checked all the parts to make sure they were loaded properly and gave it another try. It picked up like a champ. Yoo hoo Thanks for the advice - I would have been totally bumed if it didn't work so well...

    Bookmark   June 3, 2008 at 5:39PM
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