The 5 best dusters in 2021

Table of Contents: Masthead Sticky

  • The average home accumulates about 40 pounds of dust each year, making a duster a must have.
  • A great duster removes dust quickly and easily, and can get to those hard-to-reach places.
  • Our top pick by OXO will help remove dust from your home and help you breathe easier.

While I would like to say that the dust and cobwebs in my home are early Halloween decorations, that line doesn’t work most of the year. Dust just seems to accumulate at an extraordinary rate. That’s not surprising when you consider how dust originates.

Those 40 pounds of dust that settle in your home each year are a combination of pollen, human and pet dander, dead skin cells, dust mites and insect droppings, soil, food crumbs, and particulates in the air. The more people and pets in your home and the more often the doors and windows open, the more dust you’re going to have.

Even if you claim to love the patina of dust-covered surfaces, there are plenty of good reasons to remove the dust. When we breathe in dust particles, depending on the type of particulate, our respiratory tracts respond. Some particles are fairly benign and cause mild allergic reactions like sneezing and a runny nose. Other particles can trigger asthma which severely affects breathing.

Even with diligent cleaning, there will still be dust, so it’s a good idea to buy a duster. We’ve done the research and testing to find the best dusters.

Here are the best dusters in 2021

The best duster overall

oxo duster

The OXO Good Grips Microfiber Extendable Duster traps dust easily, extends and adjusts to reach high surfaces, and can be washed for years of reuse.

Pros: Microfiber duster head traps and holds dust, machine-washable head, aluminum extender handle reaches from 27 to 54 inches, replacement heads available

Cons: Duster head will shed fibers unless washed first

As a woman who is both short in stature and always watching expenditures, the OXO Good Grips Microfiber Extendable Duster is my duster of choice. My favorite thing is that after dusting, I can remove the head and toss it in the washer so I can start each dusting session with a clean duster. The washable head means no additional expense and no excuses to put off cleaning because I’m out of disposable duster heads.

With a sturdy, but lightweight, handle with a comfortable grip, the duster can stretch from 27 to 54 inches. The duster head rotates 270 degrees and can be locked into place at multiple angles. Since the duster head has microfibers on each side to capture dust, you can simply switch the angle and continue dusting when one side is heavily soiled.

Microfiber is made from polyamide (nylon) and polyester and creates an electrostatic fabric that attracts dust. The dust is then trapped in the many, tiny fibers until you use laundry detergent and water to flush them away. Because of the way microfiber is manufactured, you may see lint or loose fibers at first on the duster. Just rinse the head under cold water and give it a good shake before drying. The lint will be gone.

To keep your duster in top-shape, avoid bleach that can damage fibers and fabric softeners and dryer sheets that coat the fibers and lower their ability to trap dust. I find that air-drying the head works best.

The best disposable duster

swiffer

With its 360-degree duster surface that has more fibers and an extendable handle, the Swiffer Heavy Duty Dusters with Extender Handle is a hard-working disposable duster.

Pros: Disposable, lightweight, fits into tight spots to trap dust, extendable handle reaches three feet, dusting head locks into place

Cons: Replacement dusters can become expensive

When I want to use a disposable duster, I turn to Swiffer. I’ve tried every brand on the market and the Swiffer Heavy Duty Dusters with Extender Handle is the very best one I’ve found.

Because there are more electrostatic fibers on the duster head, I find the Swiffer Heavy Duty Duster picks up twice as much dust as other brands. The sturdy plastic extender handle expands from about 15 to 36 inches plus the 8-inch duster head. The head can be locked into four different angles to clean hard-to-reach surfaces.

This starter kit comes with one handle and 12 dusters. The disposable dusters are easy to find online and in many stores; however, a heavy-duty duster refill costs around $1.00 each.

I like Swiffer for dusting “knick-knacks” on mantels and shelves. The duster is flexible enough that I don’t have to move each small item every time I want to capture the dust. I also use it in my car to reach those tight spaces in the corners between the windshield and dashboard and all the little nooks and crannies of air-vents.

The best lambswool duster

Norpro duster

The Norpro Pure Lambswool Duster acts as a natural magnet for dust, comes from a renewable source, and will last for years.

Pros: Natural fibers, a renewable material source, picks up dust easily, reusable, lasts for many years

Cons: Handle is not extendable

If you prefer a natural fiber duster, then lambswool is an excellent choice. Many man-made fibers were developed to mimic the characteristics of wool fibers. The qualities of wool fibers and the lanolin they contain make them a natural magnet for dust and amazingly strong.

Wool has an inner cortex that is elastic and resilient to damage meaning the fiber can be bent more than 20,000 times without breaking. The cortex is covered with the cuticle layer that is composed of hundreds of microscopic overlapping scales. The scales create tiny pockets that trap and hold dust particles. Finally, the scales are covered by a thin protective film called the epicuticle that makes the fibers resistant to abrasion on even the most delicate surfaces.

If you decide on a wool duster, look no further than the Norpro Pure Lambswool Duster. I was introduced to the Norpro line while in college and still have the duster I purchased then these many years later. The dusters are available in 12-, 24-, and 48-inch lengths. The head is around 12 inches long and seven inches wide when fluffed. The handle is wooden with a leather loop for hanging.

When you have finished a dusting session, simply step outside and spin the handle between your hands to release the dust. (Consider wearing a dust mask while you do to avoid breathing in the dust particles.) If the head becomes excessively soiled, it can be hand washed with cool water and a gentle detergent. Give the head a good spin to fluff the fibers and then allow the duster to air dry.

If you are ready to lessen your dependence on plastics and choose a natural fiber, Norpro Lambswool is an excellent choice.

The best duster for tight spaces

OXO under appliance duster

One glance under your kitchen and laundry room appliances and you’ll know why you need the OXO Good Grips Under Appliance Microfiber Duster.

Pros: Slim profile and flexible handle fit under appliances and in tight spaces, the duster head is removable for washing, reusable

Cons: Duster head can shed if not washed before the first use

After an embarrassing moment when the refrigerator had to be moved to retrieve some dropped jewelry, I discovered the OXO Good Grips Under Appliance Microfiber Duster. It is the perfect dusting tool. I simply can’t move some appliances and furniture during weekly cleaning, but a few swipes with the OXO Under Appliance Duster and I can feel satisfied that my house is cleaner.

You may say, “who cares” about the hidden dust. Unfortunately, it can be a breeding ground for insects and can even hinder the proper operation of an appliance. Dust and lint under a refrigerator can clog the circulating fan and cause it to overheat and fail. With a clothes dryer, excessive lint can cause a fire, especially with gas dryers. It’s not all a vanity thing.

The OXO Under Appliance Duster has a microfiber head that is removable for easy cleaning in the washer. The duster head flexes so it can conform to tight spaces and the 33.5-inch length will reach the back of most deep appliances, cabinets, and furniture. The duster head can be removed and washed for reuse.

The best duster for window blinds

window blind duster

If you want to remove dust from window blinds and shutters more quickly, the Hiware Window Blind Cleaner Duster is for you.

Pros: Cleans window blinds, indoor shutters, and air vents thoroughly, comes with five duster heads, washable, reusable, can be used with cleaning solution if needed

Cons: Microfiber can shed if not rinsed before first use

I have white wooden blinds on every window in my home. They are great for privacy and to shut out the heat of the sun but they do love dust. They must love it because it is always there. I’ve tried other types of dusters to get rid of the dust that clings to both sides of each slat but just when I thought I had all the dust removed, I’d see it clinging to a slat I missed. Then I found Hiware Window Blind Cleaner Duster.

This ingenious little contraption has a study 3-pronged plastic handle and microfiber “gloves” that slip over the prongs. I can dust the top and bottoms of blinds at the same time! To get the best results, give the flexible handle a little squeeze to get good contact with the slat surfaces.

Since there are five microfiber cloths included, when one gets soiled I can just slip on a fresh one and keep dusting. At the end of the job, all the cloths go in the washer and I can start again tomorrow.

FAQs

How do you reduce dust in your home?

In addition to looking for the most effective, easiest to use, and the best value in dusters, there are also other steps you can take to lower the amount of dust in your home.

  • Declutter: The less “stuff” you have in your home to accumulate dust, the less dust there will be.
  • Clean from the top down: When you’re ready to clean, start at the top of the room and do the floors last so you can capture all of the dust that settles there. No need to dust twice.
  • Wash bedding weekly: We spend hours and hours in a bed and within a week bedding accumulates a great deal of human and pet dander, dust mites, and dead skin. Washing is a simple way to get rid of the problem.
  • Remove your shoes at the door: Around 60% of dust particles come from outside and removing shoes dramatically reduces the amount of dust in a home.
  • Lower the humidity: Keeping interior humidity levels around 40% will reduce the number of moisture-loving dust mites.
  • Change your air filters: Fresh filters in your HVAC system will trap more dust and keep your system running more efficiently.
  • Bathe and groom pets: A clean animal sheds less dander and hair.
  • Vacuum regularly: Keep floors clean with a good vacuum that has a HEPA filter to trap the smallest dust particles.

Are reusable dusters or disposable dusters better for removing dust?

The choice of whether to use a reusable duster such as the OXO Good Grips Microfiber Extendable Duster or a disposable duster such as the Swiffer Heavy Duty Duster, mostly breaks down to cost and personal preference. Reusable dusters offer a significantly cheaper alternative to dusting while disposable dusters must be replaced after each use. Both options work very similarly, when it comes to removing dust as they both are made of special fibers that grip dust easily and efficiently.

Check out our other great cleaning guides

window cleaner
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17 top-rated products to clean every room in your house

If you buy through our links, we may earn money from affiliate partners. Learn more.

Household cleaning products 4_3
  • Here are 17 top-rated cleaners and tools people swear by to clean their bathrooms, kitchens, and more.
  • These include a high-tech robot vacuum, a classic hand duster, and multi-use tools designed to save time, and energy. 
  • Due to the pandemic, some cleaning products are out of stock or low in inventory and stock can differ by zip code.

Even the thought of cleaning tires me out, and I usually have to spend a few hours (okay, more like days) mentally preparing for the chore. 

However, I’ve found that once I start cleaning one of the rooms in my apartment, I get into a productive groove that whisks me from the bathroom and kitchen to the living room and bedroom with montage-like ease. Having both the mental strength to clean and a proper toolkit of products on hand helps me reach this cleaning groove and get the chore over as quickly and seamlessly as possible.

If you’re equipped with thorough, durable, and easy-to-use cleaners and appliances, you can clean your entire home and barely break a sweat in the process. 

So what products should you fill your cleaning basket with? We looked to the top-rated ones first to see what everyone else swears by to catch dust bunnies, clear out clogged drains, and make their countertops sparkle as much as when they first moved in. 

Here are 17 cleaning products to clean your entire house, from the bathroom to the living room:

Anywhere: Dyson V10 Absolute Cordless Vacuum

dyson v10

Dyson V11 Outsize Cordless Stick Vacuum, $699.99, available at Bed Bath & Beyond

Though the price is a lot to pay for a vacuum, the V11’s powerful and thorough cleaning capabilities make every dollar worth it if you have a large space. The battery only runs when you push on the trigger and comes with a backup for up to 120 minutes of usage, letting you go weeks without needing to charge. Choose between three cleaning modes for more efficient cleaning on hardwoods, carpet, and more. It also comes with additional tools so you can reach every inch of any surface.

Read our review of the Dyson V11 Outsize.

Anywhere: Roborock S6 Robot Vacuum

Roborock

Roborock S65 Robot Vacuum, $599.99, available on Amazon

If you absolutely hate cleaning, let a robot vacuum do the work for you. The Roborock cleans in a systematic way to learn where walls or furniture, and you can set no-go zones around specific rooms or just fragile items like side tables with tall vases on top. There’s even a mopping feature, which further cuts down on how much time you spend cleaning your space, and when the robot vac is low on battery, it’ll go back to its charging dock.

Check out our guide to the best robot vacuums for more options.

Anywhere: Clorox Wipes

clorox wipes

Clorox Bleach-Free Disinfecting Wipes, $3.59, available at Target

You’ll see these bleach-free wipes in nearly everyone’s cleaning cabinet because they’re thick and durable, kill 99.9% of viruses and bacteria, and come in three fresh scents. They dispense easily out of the canister and dry quickly, plus they’re safe on hard and nonporous surfaces like finished hardwood, sealed granite, and stainless steel. 

Due to the pandemic, Clorox Wipes are currently sold out at major online retailers, including Walmart and Lowe’s. Items fulfilled by Amazon have also sold out, and prices for Clorox Wipes fulfilled by third-party sellers have gone up significantly. We have found some availability at Target and Quill. We are monitoring restocks and will update this post accordingly. 

Anywhere: OXO Microfiber Hand Duster

oxo duster

OXO Good Grips Microfiber Hand Duster, $9.99, available at Bed Bath & Beyond

This soft, fluffy duster captures all the dust settling on your shelves and countertops in one fell swoop. Flexible and lightweight, it’s comfortable and easy to maneuver around tight, tricky spaces. Its reusable head is machine washable, though it’s best if you simply handwash it in cold water.

If you need something to reach tall surfaces, OXO’s 3-in-1 Extendable Duster is also highly rated. It extends to 8 feet, collapses to 3 feet, and comes with three interchangeable brush heads.

Anywhere: Evriholder Pet Hair Removal Broom with Squeegee

evriholder

Evriholder Pet Hair Removal Broom with Squeegee & Telescoping Handle, $12.98, available at Amazon

Whether you’re dealing with thick pet hair or a slippery spill, this dual-use broom can handle it. The 100% natural rubber attracts hair and debris “like a magnet” from hardwood, linoleum, and traditionally difficult surfaces like carpet and rugs. Then use the built-in squeegee edge if you need to wipe off liquids from windows, showers, tile, and hardwood. It can extend out to 5 feet. 

Kitchen: O-Cedar Spin Mop and Bucket Floor Cleaning System

o cedar mop

O-Cedar Easy Wring Spin Mop and Bucket Floor Cleaning System, $34.99, available at BJ’s

This well-designed system allows for hands-free wringing. The bucket has a special spinner, activated by a foot pedal, that spins your mop and keeps water splashes contained.

The mop head itself rotates 360 degrees and is shaped like a triangle to better clean the corners of your home. Microfiber is equally effective on hardwood floors and tiles, like the ones in your kitchen, when used wet or dry.

Anywhere: Mrs. Meyer’s Everyday Cleaner

Mrs. Meyers spray

Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day Multi-Surface Everyday Cleaner, $4.99, available at Target

Natural cleaning brand Mrs. Meyer’s makes this plant-based multi-surface cleaner that cleans as well as traditional chemical-laden ones but doesn’t leave any harsh odors behind. Instead, after it’s removed dirt from your countertops and surfaces, it has a sweet, pleasant, and flowery honeysuckle scent. Other nice scents from the brand include Basil, Lavender, and Lemon Verbena. 

Kitchen: Topist Angry Mama Microwave Oven Cleaner

topist microwave cleaner

Angry Mama Microwave Oven Cleaner, $7.99, available at Amazon

Rather than stick your head in your microwave and hack away for half an hour at the food crud that has been in there since 200 heating sessions ago, use this accessory to loosen it up first.

Add vinegar, water, and lemon juice to the fill lines on the body and microwave the Angry Mama for 5 to 7 minutes, after which any stains will be loose enough to wipe down quickly. It should cut down your cleaning time in half and make your microwave usable again in time for dinner. 

Kitchen: Easy-Off Oven Cleaner

easy off oven cleaner

Easy-Off Professional Fume Free Max Oven Cleaner, $4.24, available at Walmart

People rarely ever wipe up their oven messes immediately, but they come to regret it weeks later when the baked-on spills and grease don’t budge. Make your oven look brand new again with this affordable, fume-free cleaner, which works on ovens, oven doors, broilers, broiler pans, and stainless-steel surfaces to clean up those tough messes. Spray it and leave it on for at least 5 minutes and up to 40 minutes, then wipe down with a cloth or paper towel. 

Kitchen and bathroom: Green Gobbler Liquid Clog Remover

green gobbler clog remover

Green Gobbler Liquid Clog Remover, $14.63, available at Target

Living in a house involves the constant battle of unclogging pipes and drains. If you’re not fishing out bits of food from the sink, you’re probably unraveling a never-ending string of hair from the shower drain.

Green Gobbler’s clog remover clears your drains by liquifying everything in its path — grease, hair, scum, food, and more. It comes in a dual-chambered bottle and you use one chamber for sinks and tubs and both chambers for toilets. 

Kitchen: Krud Kutter Concentrated Cleaner and Degreaser

krud kutter

Krud Kutter Concentrated Cleaner and Degreaser, $6.58, available at Home Depot

This multi-use cleaner can be used all over your house, including exterior parts like driveways and patio furniture. As a powerfully concentrated degreaser, it’s especially useful for your kitchen because it can take out food and drink stains, grease, oil, gum, and soap scums. Dilute one part concentrate with 10 parts water and you can cover up to 75 square feet of surfaces. 

Living room and bathroom: Stoner Invisible Glass Premium Glass Cleaner

invisible glass

Stoner Invisible Glass Premium Glass Cleaner (2-pack), $14.85, available at Amazon

People who have tried this glass cleaner, available in both aerosol and spray form, never go back to any other products. Your mirrors and glass surfaces will emerge sparkly clear and streak-free since it doesn’t contain any soaps, scents, or dyes. It’s also ammonia-free.

Once all your bathroom and living room glass surfaces are clean, feel free to use on your car to remove the stains, droppings, and other dirty casualties of driving outside. 

Living room: AmazonBasics Cleaning Cloth

amazonbasics cleaning cloth

AmazonBasics Microfiber Cleaning Cloth (24-pack), $15.98, available at Amazon

While far from being super plush or thick, these basic cleaning cloths are absorbent and durable enough to get the job done. The pack includes cloths in three different colors, so you can separated them by cleaning tasks. If you’re on a budget, it’s hard to find a better deal than this value pack.

Living room: Hoover PowerDash Pet Carpet Cleaner

powerdash cleaner

Hoover PowerDash Pet Carpet Cleaner, $99, available at Amazon

If you have the double whammy of a pet (or pets) and carpeted floors, you’ll want this specialized Hoover cleaner. The under-$100 appliance both cleans and offers antimicrobial protection, and it comes with a removable nozzle so you can rinse off dirt and grime.

It also has a dual-tank system that keeps your clean water separated from the dirty water, and its signature HeatForce technology means your carpets will dry faster. 

Bathroom: Method Daily Shower Spray Cleaner

method shower

Method Daily Shower Spray (pack of 2), $22.99, available at Amazon

The fresh Eucalyptus Mint scent of this cleaner might motivate you to actually use this cleaner every single day to prevent scum and grime build-up. It’s made from non-toxic and biodegradable ingredients that you can feel better about going down your drain. Other than in the tub itself, you can use it for chrome faucets and shower doors.

Bathroom: Clorox ToiletWand

clorox toilet wand

Clorox ToiletWand, $11.19, available at Target | Also available at: Walmart for $8.88 

The ToiletWand comes with disposable sponges that are preloaded with Clorox cleaner, eliminating the need to buy a separate toilet bowl cleaner. The sponge pad clicks securely onto the wand and gets into areas of your toilet that a brush can’t, and once you’re done cleaning, it comes off with one click so you never need to touch anything beyond the stick itself. This system also means you won’t have a dirty toilet brush sitting in your bathroom at all times.

Bathroom: The Crown Choice Grout Cleaner Brush

crown choice grout brush

The Crown Choice Grout Cleaner Brush, $10.99, available at The Crown Choice

Getting into the tiny lines of your bathroom is difficult without a specialized, narrow brush like this. It has sturdy, angled brushes to reach the soap scum, grime, and mold stuck in your grout, but it’s equally easy to wash afterward in hot, soapy water. The thick 1-inch handle is fairly comfortable to hold, which certainly helps as you dig into the floors and walls of your bathroom. 

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Roborock’s top-of-the-line robot vacuum has powerful suction but its video surveillance is an expensive novelty – I’d wait for it to go on sale

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Roborock S6 MaxV   Product Photo 3.JPG

Table of Contents: Masthead Sticky

Roborock may not be a household name yet, but the company makes some of the best robot vacuums in our buying guide. Since launching its first unit in 2016, Roborock has focused exclusively on robot vacuums but has added mopping capabilities and even home security features so they can be more useful than getting rid of dust.

The Roborock S6 MaxV is one of the brand’s latest models. It’s an update of the S6, the top pick in our guide. The improvements include stereo cameras that help it avoid common obstacles and provide HD surveillance footage, up to three hours of battery life, stronger 2500 Pa suction, and multi-floor mapping.

I tested the S6 MaxV for several months, and while I still prefer the S6, there are many reasons why others might want to choose the S6 MaxV instead. 

Specs

The robot vac is larger than most I’ve tested at 13.75 inches in diameter and 3.75 inches high, though this isn’t a big deal. It’s only a factor if the clearance between your furniture and the floor is less than four inches. In this situation, you can measure the clearance to ensure the vac will fit under furniture or at least won’t get stuck. Or if you can, push the furniture back a bit so the vacuum can do its work.

The main brush is 6.5 inches long and maintains direct contact with the surface it’s cleaning. The main brush is fed by one side brush at the front-right of the unit.

The 2500 Pa suction is impressive, but this number should be taken with a grain of salt since there isn’t a standardized way to measure suction in the robot vacuum industry. Still, during testing, the suction appears to translate to better cleaning – and extra noise (more on that in a bit).

The S6 MaxV comes with an additional HEPA filter, 458-milliliter dust bin, 297-ml water tank, mop attachment, mop cloth, and a pad that attaches to the charging dock to protect your floors from prolonged exposure to moisture. 

Set-up process

Setting up the S6 MaxV was a fast, seamless job that took about 10 minutes. First, I removed the packaging, plugged in the charging dock, and set the vacuum on the dock to charge. Even if you don’t charge it before your first cleaning session, the vacuum comes with 50% battery power you can use it right away. 

I spent the next five minutes installing and connecting the Roborock app. I created a schedule for the robot to run daily, which proved a little confusing since it’s unintuitively located in the “Timer” section of the menu.

Review of the Roborock S6 MaxV

I recently tested 16 robot vacuums for our guide, and the S6 MaxV consistently performed well in the battery of tests we put each model through. 

During testing, I poured a tablespoon each of kitty litter, coffee grounds, and flour, and some pet hair on separate 18-inch-square sections of carpeting and hardwood flooring. Next, I run the robot vac on its highest suction setting for two cleaning cycles, compare the before and after photos, and assess how much the unit picked up.

The Roborock S6 MaxV Test
I tested the Roborock S6 MaxV by seeing how much flour, coffee grinds, kitty litter, and pet hair it can pick up on hardwood floor and carpet.

The S6 MaxV picked up almost everything. On the carpeting, only about 5% of the flour was left after the cleaning cycles, and there were traces of coffee grounds and kitty litter. On the hardwood, about 5% of the flour and kitty litter were left behind, but the coffee grounds were gone. And, on both surfaces, there was no pet hair to be found after running the vac.

The S6 MaxV also did a good job of cleaning in corners. I sprinkled a teaspoon of flour in carpeted and hardwood corners to see how close the unit could get. On the carpeted corner, the S6 MaxV got within an inch and picked up 70% of the flour, which is excellent. The hardwood performance wasn’t as impressive, but it was still good – the vac came within 1.5 inches of the corner and picked up about 50% of the flour.

The Roborock S6 MaxV Corner Test
Before and after of how effective the S6 MaxV was in hardwood and carpeted corners.

One of the cool things about the S6 MaxV is that it features two HD cameras to help navigate around obstacles and offer remote viewing – as in, home surveillance. You can guide the vac using the joystick-like controller in the Roborock app. It worked smoothly and provided a clear picture. However, I didn’t find the feature particularly useful since we’re living through the novel coronavirus pandemic and have rarely left the house. Still, it might be a useful feature in the future if you’re away and want to check on your pets or make sure doors and windows are closed.

I usually don’t find the mopping function of many robot vacuums to be useful. It’s a pain to fill the water tank, set it up, and remember to remove it again. The hassle seems especially futile since most models aren’t able to scrub your floors for a deeper clean. However, the tank on the S6 MaxV is larger than most so I can go longer between refills. Like other robot mops, the S6 MaxV can also detect and avoid carpeting, and I can also set no-mop zones and adjust the water flow based on the room being cleaned. It’s a good option for regular, light cleaning, but I still occasionally needed to perform deep cleans. 

Cons to consider

I have a one-inch threshold between my living room and kitchen, and it’s the nemesis for the S6 MaxV. On some days, it can handle it without an issue. On others, I will get a notification from the app that it’s stuck on the lip. Most vacuums I’ve tested bump into the threshold and avoid the kitchen altogether. The S6 MaxV can at least clean the kitchen sometimes, but I’ve decided to make the threshold a no-go zone because I don’t like having to save the vac when it gets stuck. You may want to do the same if you have a threshold of similar thickness between rooms in your home.

In my testing of robot vacuums, I’ve noticed the strongest ones are also the loudest and this was the case with the S6 MaxV. On the quiet mode (which you can set in the app), my sound meter registered 63 decibels, which is louder than a normal conversation. On high suction, it was a bit louder at 67 decibels or almost as loud as a busy highway from 50 feet away. This won’t hurt your ears, but it may make it hard to watch TV or have a conversation in the same room as the vac. However, vacuums can resuspend dust into the air while cleaning, so if you have a sensitive nose, you shouldn’t be in the same room when it’s running anyway.

Roborock S6 MaxV   Product Photo 1.JPG

Should you buy it?

Since even budget robot vacs are still considered a luxury item and don’t tend to perform as well as your standard upright vac, I’d say at around $750, the S6 MaxV is mainly for people with expendable income or for techies who need to have the most high-tech gadgets available. This is the top-of-the-line model from one of the most respected names in the robot vacuum industry, but it does come at a high investment.

Though I appreciate the smart mopping options – no-mop zones and scheduling specific rooms – a robot pushing a damp cloth across your floor may only be minimally useful depending on your household. And while the cameras and surveillance features are a nice touch, I didn’t find them all that helpful beyond a fun novelty. However, if you’re looking to boost your home surveillance when you’re away and are in the market for a robot vacuum, then the S6 MaxV may be worth the cost.

If you have the luxury of time and can wait a bit, you’ll typically find excellent deals on robot vacuums especially during Amazon Prime Day, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and other big sales events.

What are your alternatives?

I tested more than 16 models to determine the best robot vacuums in our buying guide. If you’re interested in Roborock, pay particular attention to the Roborock S6, which is our top pick and usually costs about $100 less than the S6 MaxV when it’s not on sale. It’s the predecessor to the S6 MaxV so you lose the HD camera surveillance but it’s quieter and doesn’t get stuck as easily.

The bottom line

Despite these minor considerations, I was impressed with how well the Roborock S6 MaxV performed in our tests on hardwood floors and carpet and found the vac functioned as advertised.

Pros: Outstanding performance on carpeting and hardwood, mop capabilities, HD camera for remote video surveillance, useful app, cleans deep into corners

Cons: Loud, larger-than-average dimensions, constantly got stuck on a one-inch threshold during testing, video surveillance isn’t as useful if you’re home often

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The best mops in 2021

Table of Contents: Masthead Sticky

  • Keeping your home clean includes the floors, and that means mopping. 
  • Libman Spin Mop and Bucket is our top pick because it works in kitchens, bathrooms, and mudrooms, and can help keep wood floors gleaming.
  • For more info on the right type of cleaner to use on your flooring, check out our guide to the best floor cleaners for wood, vinyl, tile, and more.

To keep your home sparkling clean, you have to mop your floors. Of course, that’s often a dreaded chore.

You should always sweep or vacuum first to pick up small debris and dust so you’re not just moving dirt around with your mop later. It also helps to mop weekly so it’s more like maintenance work as opposed to a big undertaking. But the best way to make mopping easier is to have a good mop that actually gets the job done.

A quality mop should make quick work of even sticky floors, be easy to use, and ideally, have a removable head so it can be washed and disinfected to keep bacteria from growing. In fact, if your mop ever smells bad or looks particularly grimy, don’t use it.

All of the floors in my home require mopping, so I’ve been testing mops and cleaning products for decades. I’ve also been a home economist for companies and publications, so I’m always looking for the most effective and easiest to use products. 

Here are the best mops

Updated 1/14/21. We updated prices, links, and formatting. We’ve also included an additional mop we’re looking forward to testing for a future update of this guide.

The best overall

Libman Spin mop

With the Libman Spin Mop and Bucket you can clean every hard surface floor in your home with the same mop, from dry-dusting hardwood to wet mopping sticky kitchen messes.

Pros: Simple to use for all hard surface floors, hands never have to touch water, easy to assemble, removable and replaceable mop head

Cons: Plastic lever can break if used with excessive force

If you have multiple types of hard surface floors to clean in your home, it can be expensive to buy several different mops and frustrating to store them. With the Libman Spin Mop and Bucket, you can clean every floor with just one mop.

Libman combined a deep-cleaning microfiber mop and a mop bucket with a stainless-steel spin chamber to give you everything you need for mopping. The microfiber mop works great as both a dry-dust mop and a slightly damp mop for hardwood floors. Then, with the right cleaning solution, it’s perfect for scrubbing dirty floors in the bathroom and kitchen. The head is removable from the handle and can go straight into the washing machine to be cleaned.

I’m particularly impressed with the durable, adjustable stainless-steel mop handle and the stainless-steel spin bucket. Other brands have plastic components that are more prone to breaking.

With the lever system to activate the spinning mechanism, my hands never have to touch the mopping water, and I can adjust the amount of moisture left in the mop head. I’ve been using it for many months with no issues, but it’s good to know that replacement mop heads are available if this one ever wears out.

The best on a budget

Libman Wonder mop

Want clean floors without breaking the bank? Libman Wonder Mop uses microfiber strips, wrings out easily (but keeps hands dry), and is easy on the wallet.

Pros: Microfiber head is removable and machine washable, wringing action keeps hands dry, can be used wet or dry, the mop head is replaceable

Cons: Wringer can be difficult for someone with limited hand and wrist movement

If you are looking for a good, basic mop, the Libman Wonder Mop is inexpensive but durable.

Despite the multiple components of the mop, it’s also quite compact. The mop head can be removed and tossed in the washer for a good cleaning, the built-in wringer keeps your hands out of the cleaning solution, though it’s not ideal for anyone with limited mobility or movement.

I’ve owned a Wonder Mop for many years and found an amazing number of ways to use it beyond mopping the floor. Since the head is made of microfiber that attracts dust, I pull down the wringer sleeve to shorten the mop fibers into something resembling a stiff brush. I then use the mop to reach corners that seem to attract every spider web and insect possible. I’ve used the mop to absorb water from ice chests and to capture spills in car trunks. All this in addition to actually mopping floors.

Since I use it so often, I buy a couple of replacement heads so I can always be sure to have an extra for non-mopping use. When I do use it for regular mopping, I find that with hot water and a good floor cleaner, the mop does a very good job.

The best for wood floors

Swiffer Wet Jet wood

The easy to use Swiffer WetJet Wood Mopping Kit gives you everything you need for shiny, streak-free wood floors.

Pros: Compact, all-in-one mop and floor cleaner, cleaning solutions for other types of floors are interchangeable, refills are simple to find, great customer service

Cons: Spray nozzles can become clogged if the mop isn’t used regularly, cleaning pads aren’t reusable, pricier to maintain

Whether you have solid hardwood or engineered hardwood floors, the Swiffer WetJet Wood Mop will make cleaning them a breeze. With disposable cleaning pads and an all-in-one mop and cleaning solution, it’s a no-mess, no-fuss cleaning system.

Hardwood floors can easily be ruined if you don’t clean them correctly. They don’t stand up well to regular mopping with a strong cleaner and lots of water. Instead, when muddy tracks and spills happen, a delicate touch is best. As with any floor, they must be swept, vacuumed, or dry-dusted before any cleaning with a mop.

I love the Swiffer WetJet Wood Mopping Kit for many reasons. The pads are disposable so I can begin each cleaning session with a fresh surface. The cleaning solution is “built-in” to the mop so with just a touch of the battery-operated micro-mist spray, I can add the solution to the floor while I mop. And, as a bonus, the nozzles are illuminated so I can see just how much solution is hitting the floor and check if the area is dry after mopping.

With the Swiffer WetJet Wood Kit, you get the power mop, five mopping pads, a bottle of wood floor cleaner, and four batteries. You can easily buy refill bottles and pads and there are cleaning solutions for other types of floors like vinyl, stone, and ceramic tile.

If you have problems with the Swiffer WetJet, Procter & Gamble’s customer service is very helpful with tips to get you mopping again.

The best for ceramic tile floors

Libman Nitty Gritty mop

The grout between ceramic tiles is the toughest part of the floor to clean unless you have the Libman Nitty Gritty Roller Mop with Scrub Brush.

Pros: Built-in scrub brush with sponge mop head, simple to use, rollers for squeezing out water

Cons: Sponge mop heads usually do not last as long as microfiber

Ceramic tile floors in bathrooms, kitchens, laundry rooms, and mudrooms are probably the easiest floors to clean. The tile doesn’t absorb stains, doesn’t scratch easily, and stands up to harsh cleaners. But just to make your life a bit more challenging, the tiles are put together with grout. Grout absorbs stains and doesn’t react well to harsh cleaners that can make it become brittle and crack.  

Enter the Libman Nitty Gritty Roller Mop with Scrub Brush. The soft absorbent sponge roller with textured cleaning pads works great to remove spills and surface dirt on the tile. Then, the built-in scrub brush can be used to get rid of the grime on the grout without having to get on your hands and knees to scrub.

To get your grout clean, I dampen the floor and sprinkle a bit of baking soda on the stained areas before scrubbing with the mop brush. Then pull the handle to activate the rollers and squeeze out the water back into a bucket or utility sink, and use the damp sponge mop to lift away the baking soda and dirt. Again, what I love is not having to get my hands wet with the dirty mopping solution.  

The best with disposable pads

Swiffer sweeper

If you don’t have space for a broom, mop, and bucket, the Swiffer Sweeper Dry and Wet is a good choice. 

Pros: Simple to use, no additional floor cleaner or water solution needed, refill pads readily available

Cons: Does not clean heavy soil effectively, refills can be costly

The best mopping results come from getting rid of dry loose dirt and hair first before you wet mop. With the Swiffer Sweeper Dry and Wet Mopping kit, you have everything you need at hand to take care of hard surface floors. The kit comes with a lightweight, easy-to-assemble sweeper, seven dry disposable cloths, and three wet disposable cloths.

I’ll say upfront that the Swiffer Sweeper Dry and Wet Mopping is not going to tackle floors that are really dirty. If you have lots of pets and kids who leave muddy footprints and spills, you need a heavy-duty mop. But, for light soil and quick cleanups, this is the ticket. There is no fuss, no mop bucket, and no need for additional cleaning solutions. I use mine all the time in my guest bedrooms and bathroom that don’t get daily use.

Once you buy the starter kit, refills are available everywhere. Swiffer just introduced Heavy Duty Wet Pads and Dry Pads refills that trap even more soil if you have been lax between cleanings.

What we’re looking forward to testing

We’re constantly testing new mops, so here’s what we’re looking forward to testing:

Rejuvenate: They make stick mop and cleaning systems that are similar to Swiffer, though the microfiber cleaning pads can be washed and reused. There are also different colored pads for dry dusting, wet mopping, and polishing so it’s easier to keep track of each one’s purpose. 

Check out our other great cleaning guides

OdorKlenz Laundry Additive
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How to clean your AirPods and their case to improve audio quality and kill germs

  • To clean your AirPods, you’ll need a lint-free cloth, some water and alcohol, and a fine-edged tool like a toothpick to dig out earwax.
  • Cleaning your AirPods can help them sound better, as well as reduce the amount of germs you’re touching each day.
  • When cleaning your AirPods and their case, be careful not to get water or alcohol inside the devices.
  • Visit Business Insider’s Tech Reference library for more stories.

AirPods are probably the most popular earbuds on the market right now, especially for iPhone users. But like all earbuds – and all devices – over time they get dirty, and will need to be cleaned.

Not only do AirPods get clogged up with earwax, but there’s also the grime they accumulate when they’re lost under your car seat. And of course, anything that you touch every day will fill up with germs and grease anyway.

Fortunately, cleaning your AirPods and their case is easy.

To clean your AirPods and their case, you’ll need at least one lint-free cloth, some water, and a fine-edged tool like a toothpick or pin. If there are dirty spots that won’t come out, you might also need some rubbing alcohol.

How to clean your AirPods

The earbuds

To clean the earbuds, you’ll need a soft lint-free cloth, and a tool with a fine end. 

For the cloth, we recommend buying a “microfiber” cloth. The fine-edged tool can be a toothpick, dental floss stick, bobby pin, needle, or another household item – if you don’t want to use something sharp, a cotton swab works too.

1. Wipe the outside of the earbuds with the lint-free cloth, lightly dampened with water.

2. Use another dry lint-free cloth to dry the earbuds, being careful not to get liquid in any of the openings.

How to Clean AirPods
You don’t need to soak the cloth – just slightly dampen it.

3. To tackle earwax that’s stuck in the earbuds’ speaker hole, grab your fine-edged tool or dry cotton swab. Carefully dig out the earwax, making sure to focus around the edges of the speaker. If you’re using a sharp object, be careful not to cut yourself or pierce the speaker.

How to clean airpods 2
Wax gathers easily around the edges of the speaker.

If you have AirPods Pro, you’ll also need to clean the silicone tips that cover each earbud’s speaker.

1. Remove the silicone tips that cover your AirPods Pro earbuds and rinse them in water. Don’t add soap, or any other household cleaner.

2. Wipe them dry with a soft, lint-free cloth, making sure they’re totally dry.

3. Once they’re dry, reattach them to the AirPods.

How to clean airpods 3
You’ll need to invert the earbud tip when you put it back on.

The case

Before you clean the AirPods’ case, remove the AirPods.

1. Use a dry lint-free cloth to wipe the outside of the case. For tougher spots, you can dampen the cloth a bit with alcohol, but be sure to dry the spots afterwards. Make sure not to get any moisture inside the case’s AirPod holders, or in the charging port.

2. To remove debris from the charging port, use a soft bristle brush.

How to clean AirPods 4
You don’t want to pierce the charging port, or get it wet.

3. To clean the inside of the case, use a soft bristle brush or a soft toothbrush – the bristles will help dig dirt out of the nooks and crannies inside of the case.

Related coverage from Tech Reference:

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Dyson’s newest vacuum is more powerful, convenient, and efficient than its predecessors, but I’d only recommend it for large homes

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dyson v11 outsize vacuum review 3

  • Dyson is well known for its powerful, convenient, and well-designed cordless vacuums, and its latest, the V11 Outsize, is the largest and most powerful yet. 
  • It features a large bin, a wide cleaning head, strong and adaptive suction power, and an LCD screen to tell you how much battery is left. 
  • Given its size, it’s best for cleaning large homes and you’ll be able to thoroughly clean each room without worrying about the battery running out, the bin filling up, or weak, ineffective power. 
  • Read more: The best vacuum
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Table of Contents: Masthead Sticky

Dyson has come out with another cordless vacuum, and this time, it’s even bigger and more powerful than its predecessor, the V11 Torque Drive vacuum.

Like all of Dyson’s vacuums, the new V11 Outsize cordless vacuum ($800, currently on sale for $700) is quite the investment. But if you find yourself spending way too much time cleaning your floors because your current vacuum isn’t powerful, large, or convenient enough, then the Dyson V11 Outsize could be the solution. 

After testing the V11 for five months, we’ve determined that the vacuum is best for large spaces and family homes. 

Design and specs: What the V11 Outsize looks and feels like 

Compared to traditional corded vacuums, the cordless V11 Outsize is sleek, slim, and not bulky. 

It’s about four feet long and weighs just under eight pounds, with a 12.5-inch wide cleaner head, LCD screen, and rechargeable battery. In addition to the standard cleaner head, it comes with five interchangeable tools for more specialized cleaning tasks and an extra battery pack that brings the total run time up to 120 minutes. 

It also comes with a docking station that you can mount to your wall for easy, organized storage. 

How to use the V11 Outsize 

Even if it’s your first time owning a Dyson cordless vacuum, the set-up and features are intuitive and pretty easy to grasp. After you’ve charged the device fully, click the components together and it’s ready to use. 

dyson v11 outsize vacuum review

You can choose from three different cleaning modes (Eco, Auto, Boost) by clicking the button on the LCD screen. This screen also tells you how much time is remaining on your vacuum’s battery. Eco mode uses the least battery, while Boost mode, for intensive cleaning on stubborn dirt, uses the most. Auto mode is the versatile and adaptive middle ground that automatically senses changes in floor types and adjusts suction power accordingly. 

To start cleaning, simply press down on the handle trigger and release it to stop the suction. My hands are on the smaller side so I sometimes found it tiring to hold the handle while clicking down, but the good news is that you don’t have to press the trigger all the way down in order for the suction to activate.

The cordless stick design and position of the bin are great because you can get under small, narrow spaces without rearranging your furniture. I could reach under my couches and even the oft-missed spot below my piano pedals, simply by bending down a bit and angling the vacuum appropriately.

Vacuuming is also much less cumbersome in the absence of cords. Even though many corded vacuums have admittedly long cords, it’s nice not to deal with tangles or the search for available outlets. I went from room to room, and downstairs to upstairs quickly, saving time and effort on the unpleasant chore. 

dyson v11 outsize vacuum review 2

As the name suggests, the most distinctive feature about the Outsize is its size.

It has a wide cleaner head to capture larger areas of dust and debris, plus a 0.5-gallon bin to store all that dust and make it possible to clean your entire house (multiple times) without stopping to empty the bin.

Senior editor Jada Wong also tested the vacuum and said, “Now that both my husband and I are home all the time, there’s been much more hair, dust, bits of random packaging, small food scraps on the floor, and clumps of soil from my indoor planting projects. We have a Dyson V10 and it’s great, but we have to change out the canister every week. The V11 Outsize has a bigger canister so we can vacuum and dump out the contents more like every few weeks instead, and we can vacuum our entire house in one go instead of stopping halfway. It’s more convenient and efficient for us, though it makes me worry about how lazy we truly are.” 

The bigger features of this model, combined with a powerful motor that spins at up to 125,000 rpm and a filtration system that traps 99.99% of particles, allow for a quick yet thorough cleaning job. 

With everyone in my family indoors most of the day and the increased foot traffic, weekly vacuuming has become even more imperative. The Outsize has been able to pick up all the hair, food crumbs, and dust in our two-story house without a problem, and on a single charge. Once I’ve conquered all the rooms, it’s easy (not to mention more hygienic) to empty the bin directly into the trash can without touching any of its contents. 

Just in case you have very large ground to cover, the Outsize comes with an additional battery pack that you can simply replace the dead one with once the time comes. However, of all the times I’ve used it, I haven’t needed to grab the extra battery pack yet. 

Cons of the V11 Outsize

The Outsize isn’t perfect, and that’s namely due to the extra weight, noise, and price tag. 

  • Weight: The V11 Outsize is the heaviest cordless stick vacuum from Dyson. The whole machine isn’t clunky, but if you spend a long time vacuuming, your hand could still get tired. I suspect it’s because of the bin position, which concentrates the weight on the top of the device and makes your body do more work in carrying it. Since this design is what lets you get into hard-to-reach areas, the weight isn’t the end of the world, but it’s something you should keep in mind. 
  • Noise: “When the vacuum is on the low setting, the noise is bearable. It’s low enough that I can keep the TV on and not worry that I’ll miss what’s being said, but not low enough that I’d want to vacuum our entire house in the morning. When it’s on max, it’s incredibly loud – I can’t hold a conversation and I wouldn’t dare vacuum unless it was the middle of the afternoon.” -Jada Wong, senior editor
  • Heat: “Like the V10, the V11’s battery is by the handle so it generates a lot of heat that gets shot out by the vents. I don’t notice it when I vacuum the floors in big sweeping motions but when I have to maneuver the vac for corners and crevices, I’ll get a shot of ventilated air on my face or hands. It’s a fleeting moment but uncomfortable nonetheless.” -Jada Wong, senior editor
  • Price: As the most recent launch with the most powerful features, the Outsize is certainly not cheap and it retails at $800. Should your budget allow for it and you need a great vacuum option right away, I think it’s worth the cost. However, if you don’t want to pay as much but still want the reliability and efficiency of a Dyson vacuum, I recommend either 1) waiting until a newer model arrives so the Outsize will drop in price, 2) checking out current Dyson deals (the biggest discounts happen around Black Friday and Cyber Monday), or 3) checking out older models, which are usually a bit lighter and less powerful, with less battery per charge. If you want an older model, here’s a quick comparison of the Outsize and the Torque Drive, which is also part of the V11 line. 

Dyson V11 Torque Drive vs. V11 Outsize: Which vacuum should you get? 

Up until now, I’ve been using the V11 Torque Drive (currently $700), so I can compare the two directly.

After testing the two, I would suggest getting the Outsize if you live in a large, suburban family home with many different types of cleaning surfaces. The larger bin, wider cleaning head, and stronger power are perfect for the big cleaning task. Meanwhile, the Torque Drive is better for smaller spaces, such as my small four-person, one-story apartment in Brooklyn.

The Torque Drive is the only other Dyson cordless vacuum that also has an LCD screen. It also features three different cleaning modes, thorough filtration, strong suction power, and a great battery. 

The bottom line

I love using the V11 Outsize to clean my house, but I don’t think it’s for everyone.

You’ll be perfectly fine with an earlier model in the V11 line if you don’t have a large home or you don’t mind recharging your device once a week or so if you’re on a cleaning schedule. You can even get a non-V11 vacuum if you don’t care for the LCD screen that tells you how much battery is left, like a V10.

All in all, however, the V11 Outsize has all the features you could want in a high-tech vacuum: it’s big and efficient, but it still looks sleek, and it can get into low, tough-to-reach areas. Outside of the core cleaning task, it’s easy to empty, maintain, and store. If you want to invest in an effective cordless vacuum, I can’t imagine a better choice. 

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