Autoscrubber or Manual Mop: Which Is Best For You?

Even in commercial cleaning settings, it can be difficult to know whether an autoscrubber is right for you. Perhaps your office might seem too small for an autoscrubber, but too big for traditional mopping, and you’re looking for something in the middle.

A manual mop can be great if you're looking to clean a small space, while an autoscrubber is a good choice for large spaces. If you're looking for something in between, an i-mop could be the right choice for you.

If you’re looking for the best way to clean your floors, look no further: we break down the pros and cons of autoscrubbers and manual mops here.

Autoscrubber: pros and cons

Autoscrubbers (automatic floor scrubbers) are floor cleaning machines that scrub the floor clean, as well as dry. However, traditional autoscrubbers are large and cumbersome, making them difficult to transport and impractical for use in smaller spaces.

For some, an autoscrubber might also be out of your budget. It, of course, depends on the situation: whether you’re part of a commercial cleaning staff, in-house or outsourced, or looking to purchase one for your own building.

Some of the pros of autoscrubbers include:

  • A better, more efficient clean
  • Quicker drying times
  • Quicker cleaning and less staff required for operation (reduces labour cost)
  • More eco-friendly (less water & chemicals)

However, there are some cons to consider:

  • Can be large, heavy and cumbersome
  • Might be out of price range
  • Can be hard to clean small areas and around furniture

For large buildings, the appeal of an autoscrubber is impossible to deny with cheaper labour costs, quicker cleaning as well as quicker drying, which means less disruption and a healthier building environment.

For smaller spaces, the negatives, especially the initial upfront cost of an autoscrubber, may simply not be worth it.

In the end, you need to work out whether the pros outweigh the cons for your individual situation.

Manual mops: pros and cons

The primary (and perhaps only) benefit of mopping vs using an autoscrubber is the agility of the mop. You can basically clean any obstructed floor area with a mop; around tables, in and under chairs, under benches and down the side of toilets.

There are some major issues with manual mopping.

The traditional mop and bucket simply doesn’t do the job - in fact, it can make floors more dirty and slippery, as most dirt is just spread around rather than being removed from the floor.

Manual mopping is also labour intensive. On average, it will take 45 minutes to clean a 300 square meter floor with a mop and bucket. (Note: You should change the water every 150 sqm to minimise the spread of dirt and improve cleaning performance.)

There are some methods of manual mopping that are more efficient than traditional mop and bucket cleaning.

For example, microfibre mops.

i-team’s i-fibre mops are ergonomic and lightweight and grab dust particles easily. They also don’t just mop floors - the i-fibre range incorporates unique tools which can be used for a variety of cleaning, including cleaning walls and tiles. Microfibre can actually remove bacteria by 99%.

i-fibre mop

i fibre mops

In collaboration with our disinfecting pre-treating system, the i-fibre can reduce both your chemical and water usage by up to 95% and has been proven to kill 99.99% of germs.

The i-fibre i-scrub 26h and EWALL microfibre wall & surface cleaning tools also have inbuilt scrapers that allow you to remove stubborn dirt.

If a traditional autoscrubber is too big for what you need, but microfibre is too much work, you might want to look into a new-generation floor scrubbing machine such as the i-mop.

The i-mop essentially combines the best of both worlds: The power and speed of a traditional autoscrubber with the agility of a mop. It’s the worlds most manoeuvrable scrubber dryer.

i mop

The i-mop has a dirt removal rating of over 97% and not only cleans your floor efficiently, but also dries it within seconds.

In addition, the i-mop is eco-friendly, cleaning with only 9 litres of water per hour (typical traditional scrubber dryers or autoscrubbers use 35 litres of water per hour). Each i-mop also contributes 18 litres of water every day to the Made Blue Foundation.

If the i-mop is still too big for your needs, you might want to look into a smaller floor cleaning machine such as the i-scrub 21b or 30. The i-scrub 30 is great for floor scrubbing and has 1650 RPM of cleaning power, giving incredible deep cleaning power on a wide range of floors.

i scrub 30

The verdict

The best floor cleaning method for you will always depend on your own situation. However, it’s easy to see that for bigger buildings, an autoscrubber is a great choice, while a microfibre mop might be the better choice for smaller operations. And If you need the best of both worlds, have a deeper look at the i-mop.

You can book a demo of any of our cleaning products here.