In this article, industry manufacturers answer common questions asked by building service contractors.

Are there specific tasks that call for a microfiber flat mop; microfiber string mop; and a cotton string mop?

Microfiber flat mops can clean corners much more efficient than cotton mops. Microfiber string mops are good for spill control and cleaners who like spill mops for general cleaning.

— Bruno Niklaus, vice president, global marketing, Unger Enterprises Inc., Bridgeport, Conn.


Yes, a flat mop should be used where cross-contamination is a concern, i.e. hospital patient rooms, restrooms, and other areas germs are in a concentrated area and control should be a priority. Microfiber string or tube mops should be used where the benefits of microfiber are preferred, but cross-contamination is not an issue. Also, the microfiber string or tube mops will be more efficient for common areas where flat mops that only cover 200 to 400 square foot per pad is not timely or feasible. Cotton string mops should be used as little as possible. They are linting products, require a break in period to disperse the cotton seed oil, and are made of organic fibers therefore can harbor odors and bacteria. Cotton mops should be used in disposable settings or whenever a task requires a low-cost mop. Other appropriate uses include heavy industrial cleaning or non-skid floor applications.

— W. Scott Erwin, regional sales manager, Impact Products LLC, Toledo, Ohio


How are mops becoming “green?”

Microfiber flat mops use less chemicals and less water and are lighter (less injuries to workers). Microfiber mops last longer than cotton mops (less impact on the environment), and color-coding the mops promotes the reduction of cross-contamination.

— Bruno Niklaus, vice president, global marketing, Unger Enterprises Inc., Bridgeport, Conn.


Some mops are becoming green by the fact that they are now made from recycled materials such as old two-liter soda bottles. Microfiber is innately green because they use less water, less chemical and less energy for processing than cotton mops.

— Jim Beadles, general manager, textile division, Impact Products LLC, Toledo, Ohio

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Tips For Laundering Microfiber Products and Cotton Mops