Dust mops will continue to pick up dust as long as they are relatively clean. There comes a point, however, when a dust mop can get so dirty that by using it, you will be spreading dirt around rather than picking it up. This is when a dust mop needs a good washing. In some cases, such as with sturdy synthetic-blend mops, you can simply put the mop head in the washing machine and run it through a gentle cycle. However, many mops--cotton mops, for instance--will start falling apart after a few times in the washing machine. To safely clean any dust mop, hand washing is preferable.

How to Clean Dirty Dust Mops

Step 1

Fill a bucket with 1 to 2 gallons of warm water. Add laundry detergent and stir to mix.

Step 2

Remove the dust mop head from the frame. Depending on the type of mop, this means you will either untie it or simply slip it off the metal frame.

Step 3

Place the dust mop in the bucket of soapy warm water. Stir well with a dowel or large spoon and allow the mop head to soak for at least an hour.

Step 4

Dump the old soapy water and add fresh warm water and detergent. Stir the dust mop in the cleaning solution and then allow it to soak again for a while.

Step 5

Rinse the dust mop thoroughly in a sink under warm water. Follow with a cold rinsing and squeeze out any excess moisture. Hang to dry, preferably outdoors if the weather is warm enough.