Shark brand steam mops are becoming very popular, and it's easy to see why. These handy gadgets are lightweight and super easy to work with when you need to clean a floor. The mop needs only water to operate, so you don't have to worry about keeping a supply of floor cleaner on hand. Usually used on hard surfaces, like tile and linoleum, some models come with a carpet glider attachment that lets you steam your carpets as well.
What It Does and Doesn't Do
If you're going to use your Shark steam mop on your carpets, be aware that it won't actually clean them. The steam can freshen up carpets by killing bacteria to deodorize them, but pulling dust and dirt particles out of the carpet is a job that will still fall to your regular vacuum cleaner.
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How to Use a Shark Steam Mop on Carpet
Step 1: Prepare to Mop
When working on carpets, you'll need to vacuum the floor first. The Shark mop can't pick up dust, debris, or pet hair from the floor. It will only make the dirt soggy and harder to clean later. It may also simply push it around on the floor, leaving unsightly dirt lines at the edge of the mop. You should always vacuum or sweep floors before steam mopping them.
- Vacuum the carpet before you begin.
- Pop the square cleaning head onto the mop if it's not already there.
- Slide a fresh microfiber cleaning pad over the mop head and attach it with the Velcro loop.
- Open the water tank by turning the cap counterclockwise and fill the reservoir with water.
- Unwrap the power cord by twisting the quick-release latch on the back of the mop. Plug it in.
- Press the power button three times to activate the mop's scrub setting. Wait about 30 seconds for the mop to heat up.
If you have hard water, consider filling your mop with bottled or filtered water to prevent clogs and problems.
Step 2: Steam the Carpet
Steam mops are generally safe for carpets, but it's better to be safe than sorry. Always test the steam mop on an inconspicuous part of the carpet before using it everywhere. This will ensure that the mop won't discolor or otherwise harm the carpet fibers.
- Lay the carpet glider attachment on the floor and set the steam mop pad inside it.
- Move the steam cleaner across the carpet in a back and forth motion. This will automatically release steam from your mop. Do not let the mop sit stationary on one area of your carpet. Begin in the far corner of the room, working your way out. The mop may make your carpets slightly damp, so you don't want to paint yourself into a corner.
- Add water to the steam mop's water tank as needed while you work. Remember to unplug the unit before refilling it.
Step 3: Store the Steam Mop
After using your steam mop, you'll want to give it a few minutes to cool down. Then you can remove the dirty cleaning pad and empty the water reservoir so things don't get funky while you store them.
- Turn off the Shark mop by pressing the power button. Unplug the unit and wrap the cord around the cord keeper on the back of the appliance.
- Remove the microfiber pad from the steam mop when it has cooled. You can then toss the pad in the washing machine and clean it with liquid detergent. Do not use powdered laundry detergent on the cloth.
- Empty the water reservoir on your mop if you didn't use all the water during cleaning.