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You can’t convince me that anyone actually likes mopping. Having a clean home? Of course. The act of cleaning? Not so much. If there’s a faster, easier way to get it done, I’m here for it. That’s why I initially thought getting an app-operated robot vacuum-mop combo would undoubtedly ensure spick-and-span floors in my apartment at all times. Then I realized how often I actually had to refill the reservoir and that I had to put the tiny mop attachment into the washing machine after Every. Single. Use. Hard pass. I also tried a high-tech steam vac that promises to cut cleaning time in half (and it really did!), but I soon got too overwhelmed—okay, fine, lazy—to properly clean out the gnarly tank of watery muck that got sucked up with every run. When I saw that Swiffer launched its first major revamp in more than 20 years, I thought, maybe a simpler approach will actually make mopping, I don’t know, simpler. Here’s how it went when I gave up all the fancy-schmancy alternatives. 

The very first thing that thrilled me when I unboxed the Swiffer PowerMop was discovering that it actually came with batteries. Is there anything worse than opening a new toy only to realize you have to steal some AAs from your TV remote just to use it? After unpacking the bottle of cleaner and two mop heads that come with the starter kit, I snapped together the rod (which easily comes apart, a detail that also is handy if you don’t have a ton of vertical storage), clicked the bottle into the holster, and stuck the pad of scrubbing strips onto the bottom. Boom. Ready to mop in under one minute. 

Swiffer PowerMop Starter Kit

If you’ve used a Swiffer, there’s not much difference in the way this one operates—push the button on the handle, get a spritz of solution across the floor, and start swiping. Though there is one new feature that’s a major upgrade for me: a 360-degree swivel and the ability to lock the head into a completely vertical position. Being able to easily clean up splatters of dog food from the bottom of my kitchen island was a game changer. And a quick trip around the perimeter of my one-bedroom apartment had my baseboards looking (and smelling!) as fresh as move-in day. This simple addition also makes it that much easier to store the Swiffer in the awkward sliver of space I reserve in my laundry closet for cleaning tools. The scent is strong, but not too, and lasts long enough to make me feel accomplished several hours later. As for the pads, the package says they’re good for about 485 square feet before you should toss them, but I’d say that also depends on how dirty your floors are. 

Other new perks include a base that’s 30 percent larger than past versions, which means more cleaning in fewer swipes, and a quick-dry solution that doesn’t have me tiptoeing around the kitchen for the next hour. I have to say, I do find myself reaching for the Swiffer a lot more often than I’m activating the robot mop or steam cleaner these days. Do I like cleaning now? Not really, but for just $30, it’s feeling like the low-tech route at least makes life (and chores) much more manageable.