How to pick out the best mop for cleaning ceilings

Healthcare | 30/9/2022

While not as often considered, it’s essential to remember that your facility’s ceilings are not resistant to grime, dirt and dust. This can inevitably cause a host of health issues and respiratory problems, especially in the young and elderly. 

Frequently cleaning ceilings and washing floors at your facility can help you improve the overall environment while supporting the long-term health of your employees, guests and customers — but you need the right equipment and techniques to get you there. Read on to learn how to pick the right mop for cleaning ceiling and walls and other helpful considerations to keep in mind along the way. 


Woman cleaning ceiling vent


Benefits of Cleaning the Ceiling

Out of sight, out of mind is a saying that holds especially true for cleaning ceilings. Often neglected, these surfaces accumulate dust, cobwebs, mould spots and other contaminants that compromise indoor air quality. Dirty ceilings also harbour bacteria, viruses and germs, posing health risks to everyone in the facility. 

Regular ceiling cleaning not only enhances indoor air quality but also ensures a healthy living and working environment. Moreover, clean ceilings are essential for maintaining the overall appearance of any facility open to the public.


Best Techniques for Using a Mop on Ceilings

Preparation is Key

Be sure the space is ready before you begin mopping ceilings. To shield furniture, rugs and other surfaces underneath from falling dust and debris, cover them with drop cloths or plastic sheets. Cleaning the ceiling will go considerably faster if your workspace is tidy and uncluttered.

Use the Right Mop

Selecting the right mop is crucial for effective ceiling cleaning. Microfibre mop heads are ideal as they attract and trap dust and dirt, preventing it from spreading. Their flat design and synthetic fibres are perfect for reaching high areas and capturing fine particles. Ensure the mop has an extendable handle to reach higher ceilings without needing a ladder.

Proper Technique

When mopping the ceiling, always move from top to bottom. This professional technique helps save time and energy by allowing debris and cleaning solutions to move downward, ensuring you don't re-contaminate cleaned areas. Use an 'S' pattern to wipe the ceiling, which collects dust and moisture without spreading it around.

Addressing Mould and Stains

For mould spots, start by assessing the extent of the infestation. If it is minor, you can use a solution of water and mild soap or white vinegar. Spray the solution onto the affected area and let it sit for a few minutes before scrubbing gently with a microfibre cloth. Always clean the surrounding areas as well to prevent unseen mould from spreading.

Finishing Touches

After mopping, use a vacuum cleaner with a high-efficiency filter to capture any remaining dust particles. This final step removes all contaminants, leaving the ceiling spotless and improving indoor air quality.

By following these techniques and using the right tools, you can maintain clean and healthy ceilings, contributing to a more sanitary and pleasant environment. Regular ceiling cleaning is a simple yet effective way to ensure your facility stays fresh and hygienic.


Picking Out The Best Mop For Cleaning Ceilings

Ceilings may be more difficult to access and clean, but airborne micro-particles and dust frequently accumulate on it. Therefore, it is essential for organisations to clean walls and ceilings regularly to reduce grime, dirt and dust and lower the chances of developing mould. 

Because most mops are typically used exclusively to clean the floor, it can be difficult to determine the best mop for cleaning walls and ceilings. We’re taking a closer look at the different mop head options for cleaning your facility and the most important factors to consider when making your decision. 


Types Of Products To Consider

1. Microfibre mop heads

The surface of a microfibre mop has fine synthetic fibre that attracts dust and dirt and traps it — so you’re not simply pushing dirt around but picking it up and removing it. This type of mop pad is a popular option for cleaning ceilings because of its flat design and improved ability to trap dust, dirt and grime. 

2. Dusting wand heads

A dust mop has a similar flat and rectangular shape, designed for general dry, dust mopping. A lightweight and flexible dust mop is another good option for cleaning walls and ceilings, helping you clean difficult-to-reach areas and get cobwebs out of corners and overhead shelving. 

3. Spray mop heads

Spray mops may be more suitable for cleaning a floor or the lower portion of a wall than the ceiling. 

4. Sponge mop heads

Sponge mops consist of a spongy head that usually has an attached wringer. While a sponge mop is a great option for cleaning tile and other uneven surfaces, it’s likely not your best choice to clean the ceiling efficiently and effectively. 


What To Look For In A Mop?

  • Weight: Since cleaning walls and ceilings requires you to hold equipment over your head for extended periods, it’s best to look for a mop that isn’t too heavy. It's recommended that you choose an option that weighs no more than 1.5 kg. 
  • Mop head size: Consider a larger mop head that covers more surface area for greater speed and efficiency. 
  • Extendable handle: To help you reach a high ceiling in your facility, choose a mop with an extendable handle that allows you to adjust its length as needed. 
  • Mop head flexibility: A flexible mop head that allows anywhere from a 90-degree pivot to a 360-degree swivel can help you clean corners, creases and tight areas more successfully.
  • Mop head strength: When cleaning ceilings and washing walls, it is important to choose a softer mop head instead of an abrasive one. While a coarse mop can be useful for stubborn floor stains or spot cleaning, it can easily damage a wall or ceiling.


A dirty ceiling vent


Ceiling Cleaning Techniques

Keep in mind that the ceiling cleaning techniques you need to take advantage of are all dependent on the materials you’re working with.

Ceiling tile: Ceiling tile is resilient, meaning it can withstand different cleansers. You can use a solution of clean water and dish soap with a microfibre mop and your preferred cleaning solution for spot cleaning as well. 

Textured plaster or popcorn ceilings: For textured or popcorn ceilings, these commercial facilities typically require more frequent and intricate cleaning as more dust can rest on any curves and bends. As a result, it’s best to use dry cleaning tools, such as a microfibre dusting wand and a vacuum cleaner for nooks and crannies. 

Painted ceilings: Flat, painted ceilings can be cleaned with a soft mop head and a gentle solution of water and dish soap. It’s essential to avoid too much moisture and an abrasive tool, as they both can damage the ceiling throughout the process.


Five Ceiling Cleaning Tips To Bear In Mind

  1. A high ceiling can trap dust and dirt in hard-to-reach areas. Ensure you have the right cleaning tools at your disposal, such as an extendable handle and stepping stool, and take all necessary precautions to reduce the risk of injury.

  2. Protect furniture with drop cloths or tarps in case of falling dust. 

  3. Work with plenty of light to guarantee you get the cleaning results you want for your facility.

  4. Use a vacuum to supplement your mopping.

  5. Don’t forget to clean ceiling fans and lighting fixtures, too!


How Often To Clean The Ceiling

The frequency of commercial ceiling cleaning depends on environmental factors. However, it’s generally recommended that a commercial ceiling be cleaned more frequently than a residential ceiling — anywhere between six and thirty-six months. 

For facilities with a commercial cooking area, you will likely need to clean ceilings and kitchen walls more often to avoid the buildup of grease, dirt and other bacteria. Note: If your business is experiencing recurring stains, water or mould, these are telltale signs that there’s a larger problem that needs to be addressed. 

Visit our website for more tips on cleaning your facility efficiently and effectively and to discover Rubbermaid Commercial cleaning equipment and products