Things You'll Need
1/4 cup laundry detergent
Use a green or eco-friendly detergent if you have pets, children or allergies.
If you use powered detergent, completely dissolve it in hot water before adding to the bucket.
Keep children and pets away from the buckets. Empty immediately after use; buckets are a drowning hazard. A small child can drown in one minute.
More detergent does not necessarily add more cleaning power. If the floor is still dirty, mop it again, and allow the detergent water to sit on the floor for two to five minutes before rinsing.
If you have allergies or contact dermatitis, use gloves and eye protection.
Do not mop laminate floors.
The cleaning aisle at your local store is filled with products for cleaning your house. However, you really do not need all those products. A large bottle of liquid laundry detergent fulfills most of your cleaning needs. Its many uses include mopping your tile or vinyl floors. With two buckets, a mop, and a little elbow grease, even the worst spills are easily cleaned with only 1/4 cup of laundry detergent.
Measure 1/4 cup laundry detergent into a bucket. Add 2 gallons of hot water. Fill the second bucket with water.
Soak a mop in the detergent bucket. Squeeze out excess water, and mop the floor. Rinse the mop in the water bucket, and squeeze before dipping it back into the detergent mixture. Continue mopping until the entire floor has been mopped. Dump and refill the water bucket at regular intervals as the water gets dirty.
Sprinkle baking soda on greasy or stuck-on dirt. Add a little water to make a paste, and completely cover the spot. Allow it to soak for a few minutes, then scrub with the mop or a scrub brush to remove the dirt. Mop with the detergent mixture.
Pour the water out of both buckets, and refill with clean water. Add a splash of vinegar, no more than 1/8 cup, in one bucket.
Mop the floor again with the vinegar water. Using the water bucket, rinse and squeeze out the dirty or soapy water before putting the mop back into the vinegar water. Change the water often in both buckets. Rinse again if necessary to remove all detergent.
Ruth de Jauregui
With degrees in fine and commercial art and Spanish, Ruth de Jauregui is an old-school graphic artist, book designer and published author. De Jauregui authored 50 Fabulous Tomatoes for Your Garden, available as an ebook. She enthusiastically pursues creative and community interests, including gardening, home improvement and social issues.