Is It Better to Clean the Floor on Your Hands & Knees?

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Is It Better to Clean the Floor on Your Hands & Knees?

When I took over as the CEO of Castle Keepers House Cleaning in 1997, our primary way of cleaning hard floors was scrubbing floors on hands and knees using a cotton towel. Back then cleaning floors on your hands and knees was considered the gold standard. After all, that was the way our grandmothers did it, and no one cleaned better than our grandmothers. 

The process was physically demanding. Our cleaning technicians would wear knee pads designed for volleyball, and they would put their floor cleaner in a bucket and literally crawl from one side of the kitchen, or whatever room happened to have vinyl, tile, or wood flooring, to the other side, and scrub every inch by hand. From time to time we still get the question from new clients: “Do your maids clean on their hands and knees?”

Why was mopping the floor by hand considered to be the best?

Back in 1997, the options for effectively cleaning hard floors were limited. We knew of no better way than to get down and hand scrub hardwood floors

For starters, the tools that were available were essentially the same as those used by our mothers. The floor cleaner of choice was ammonia, and the options to apply it were limited to either hands and knees, a sponge mop, or a string mop. Neither sponge mops nor string mops clean very well. They tend to spread the dirt around more than remove it. Compound this problem with cleaning multiple homes a day and taking the same dirty mop from one home to the next and you are left with only one alternative if you want to provide a clean and sanitary result.

Is it safe to scrub the floor on your hands and knees?

While we knew cleaning floors on our hands and knees was hard work, in those days we really didn’t understand the wear and tear it could place on the human body. 

Cleaning the floors of your home on your hands and knees a couple of times a month is hard work but doable. On the other hand, doing it three to five times a day, day after day, requires a level of stamina that would be hard to comprehend if you have not done it. Even with the best knee pads and taking care to share floor cleaning responsibilities between cleaners, injuries related to this type of cleaning were not uncommon.

is hand mopping really better

Is hand mopping really better?

Fortunately, the house cleaning industry is now much more informed on matters such as repetitive motion injuries. Cleaning tools and products have also evolved to the point where better cleaning results can be realized without scrubbing floors on hands and knees. Thanks to the modern advancements in cleaning equipment, hand mopping is no longer the superior method of cleaning hard floors.

Today, no professional cleaning company would use ammonia as their go-to floor cleaner. There are many low residue floor cleaning products available. These cleaning agents are designed to be part of a floor cleaning system. 

The best floor cleaning systems use high-quality microfiber floor pads mounted on flat mop frames and handles. When used together, this system removes soil every bit as well as cleaning on hands and knees.

Who cleans floors with health and safety in mind?

The best floor cleaning systems use color-coded mop pads. For example, the pads for bathrooms will never be used in other areas of the home. This is the method we use at Castle Keepers House Cleaning. Our cleaning teams also use multiple mop pads per home. Dirty pads used in one house will never be brought into another house. In this way, we protect the health of our clients by eliminating the chance of cross-contamination. 

At the same time, our team members can thoroughly clean your floors while comfortably standing, reducing the chance of injury. As an added bonus, cleaning hard floors with a professional flat mop system is faster than cleaning on hands and knees. This helps us keep down costs, so we can provide you with the best cleaning for the best value.

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