Can you Use Steam Mop on Vinyl Flooring?

A steam mop is regarded as one of the best mops due to its ability to kill bacteria on your floor without the use of harsh chemicals. Although it can pose a risk of warping to the vinyl floor due to overheating, there are those designed with settings meant to suit any floor type.

Simply set the steam mop on low heat and use a continuous movement of back and forth to prevent too much heat on one spot which may bend the floor. Ensure to turn off the mopper in case you want to pause for a moment.

Can you Use Steam Mop on Vinyl Flooring?

What is the advantage of using a steam mop on vinyl flooring?

A steam mop uses hot steam with no addition of chemicals to kill any bacteria leaving the floor safe for your family especially if you have a crawling baby.

Vinyl flooring is mostly used in areas that are water prone and have minimal air circulation/ventilation like basements which are mostly used for food storage. Using a steam mop in areas like this is essential unlike using chemicals that may leave the environment eco-friendly.

Steam mopping will minimize the use of water and detergents and will do an excellent job on the areas where the planks join without drowning the floor and also in a shorter duration.

Drying time after steam mopping is usually less than 30 seconds making it a time-efficient cleaning tool. For excellent results sweep the floor or vacuum larger particles before steam mopping.

Steam moping is cost-effective. The mop only relies on water so you will not have to spend money on extra cleaning products.

The best steam mops for cleaning vinyl flooring 

Many people prefer using top-notch steam mops as they are well-designed to work intelligently bringing back the original shine without damaging vinyl flooring.

Here are the best steam mops that you can use on vinyl flooring;

  1. Shark genius steam pocket mop. It has three intelligent settings steam control (high, medium, and low) making it suitable for vinyl flooring as you can easily set it to low steam.

2. BISSELL symphony pet steam mop. It has great cleaning power with a digital steam control and a vacuum function which makes it perfect for vinyl flooring as you need to vacuum before steam mopping. It also saves time as it takes only 30 seconds to heat up.

3. LIGHT N EASY steam mop. Just like the name suggests, it’s light in weight to ease movement while cleaning and most importantly it has three steam control settings.

4. Pursteam 10 in-1 steam mop. It has three steam level settings and is light in weight.

What is the best way of cleaning vinyl flooring using steam mops?

When steam mopping there are a lot of risks taken and if not careful you might even void your warranty.

Here’s how to use a steam mop on a vinyl floor without damaging it:

  1. Sweep or vacuum the floor to remove larger particles and debris. As they can easily scratch the floor while moping.
  2. Make sure you have several clean mop pads at hand to change when required. Using a dirty pad will trail and smear dirt on your entire floor.
  3. Fill the water reservoir and attach a mopping pad to the foot of the steam mop
  4. Plugin the steam mop and set it to low heat giving it about 30 seconds to heat up.
  5. Keep the steam mop moving in straight back and forth strokes to avoid heat exposure on one spot which could damage the floor.
  6. Steam your entire floor with a light steam setting. Do not use scrub mode to ensure the safety of your vinyl.

When using a steam mop on vinyl flooring avoid;

  • Cleaning one spot or placing the steam mop on one area for too long
  • Steaming recently waxed floors.
  • Steam mopping on high heat settings.

Common mistakes to avoid when using a steam mop

Here are six common mistakes that you need to avoid by all means while using a steam mop as they can be costly in the long run.

  1. Plugging in a steam mop before attaching the mopping pad.

Steam mops are designed to heat up in a short period of time. The foot of the mop will heat up quickly and will be too hot for you to fix the mopping pad.

You also risk an electric shock handling a wet pad and a plugged mop.

2. Sitting a steam mop on one area for a long duration.

If you have to stop for a moment make sure you turn off the steam mop. Heat builds up quickly in some mops and you might end up destroying the floor if you let it idle

3. Using a dirty moping pad

Avoid using dirty mopping pads on the entire floor once you’ve noticed that the cloth is dirty. Ignoring it will make the dirt spread out through the entire room. It’s always good to ensure you have spare mopping pads at your disposal.

4. Leaving the dirty pad on after use.

Ensure to clean the pad after steam mopping to prevent the stains from sticking on and mold growth due to dampness

5. Using steam mops on laminate floors.

Because of its wooden material, steam(water) will cause rotting or molds with prolonged use. Generally, avoid steam mopping on any floor that should not have water on it.

6. Unless instructed otherwise by the manufacturer never put anything else in the water reservoir except water.

Steam mops are generally designed for use with water only apart from a few models that have multiple functionalities. Always make sure to read the user’s manual and make sure you clearly understand the guidelines


On laminate flooring avoid using a steam mop. The moisture being released by the mop will damage your laminate. The floor will eventually start to swell/buckle and permanently destroy it. Alternatively, I recommend a dump cloth for this type of floor.

For vinyl flooring a steam mop is ideal. You can safely use it but also be careful not to use too much heat. Vinyl flooring can stand moisture better than laminate flooring but always make sure to proceed with caution.

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