You are currently viewing To Vacuum Or Mop First  – What Is The Right Sequence?

BestBuyGet is reader-supported. We may earn commission from the links in this article at no extra cost to you. Learn more.

Should you vacuum or mop first? While this is not quite a chicken and egg debate, we aim to clear that up for you in this post!

Both methods are useful in keeping our home clean but is there a certain sequence that is more efficient? Does it even matter?

Find out why and how to use these two cleaning methods. Along with other tips on how best to clean your floors without wasting your energy!

Should You Vacuum Or Mop First?

You should vacuum first, and mop later. And for two main reasons – the first being that you will have to wait for the floor to completely dry (if you mop first) before you can vacuum. Secondly, mopping after vacuuming will pick up any leftover dust that escaped your vacuum’s path or filter.

Why You Should Vacuum First

Vacuuming (and dusting) first before mopping not only removes unseen dust but also visible debris like crumbs and hair that are not so easily picked up by a mop.

Vacuums are suitable for hardwood floors as well as carpets (with the right attachments).

The top vacuum cleaners in Malaysia are able to pick up much more dust than you can see! And aren’t noisy or cumbersome to use too.

If you choose to mop first, you might find yourself stooping down regularly to pick up stray hairs and crumbs – that can be frustrating and very tiring besides.

Moreover, when you mop before vacuuming, you’re essentially just transferring the dirt from one place to another. You might even be pushing them into the crevices between your floorboards!

Vacuums Are Good For Getting Dust And Other Small Debris Off The Floor And Carpets
Vacuums Are Good For Getting Dust And Other Small Debris Off The Floor And Carpets – Photo credits to Anete Lusina (Pexels)

Is It Better To Dust First Or Vacuum First?

You might also be wondering about this and while we have a whole post on whether to dust or vacuum first, we’ll tell you now that you should be dusting first. Then vacuuming.

Why You Should Mop After Vacuuming

Mopping is really for removing any remaining stains, your pet’s drool, or grime on the floor leftover by vacuuming. Especially with some scrubbing action in tandem with a suitable floor detergent.

How Should You Mop

Frequently change the water for each section (or small room) as you go along. Otherwise, you’re just moving dirt around, defeating the purpose of mopping in the first place.

Note: Similarly, when mopping your whole house, consider starting with the cleanest rooms first if you don’t want to change the water too frequently.

The way you mop should be systematic if you want to conserve energy and be smart about it. For example, don’t mop in random areas. Follow an invisible grid that you map out in your head instead.

Additionally, start with the furthest corner of the room and work your way to the exit of the room so you don’t walk over your newly mopped floors before they get a chance to dry.

Not All Floors Are Equal

Depending on the type of floors you have in your home, you may not want to mop at all.

The latter applies especially to unsealed wood floors that are prone to warping from too much moisture. In that case, just rely on dusting and vacuuming to clean them.

Dust Mop On Hardwood Floors
Dust Mop On Hardwood Floors – Photo credits to Pixabay (Pexels)

For sealed hardwood and laminate floors, it’s best to use a bit of hot water without soap.

Some of the top mops in Malaysia make it easier for you to control how much water you want to use on your floors.

Do You Have To Mop After Every Vacuuming Session?

We personally don’t mop after every vacuuming session. Because we feel that life is so much more than just cleaning.

However, because we have very active indoor pets that shed a lot, and don’t live in a dusty area:

Vacuuming our home two to three times a week is enough to keep on top of the dust and fur. As for mopping, we do this once a week. And we bring the mop out if there are “accidents” too.


So now you know why it matters whether you vacuum or mop first! And with this knowledge in mind, cleaning your home becomes a quicker and more pleasant (as pleasant as cleaning can be anyways) chore.

Our final note is not to underestimate the benefits of vacuuming regularly (and thoroughly once in a while). In the long run, this will save you energy when mopping. And you will not have to mop as often either.

Further reading:


Janice is the founder & editor for Wanted to be an author as a kid, got a D in English (First Language), but somehow now a content writer with an engineering background. Bakes, does yoga, plays the piano, reads, and most other introverted indoor hobbies.