Why is it that keeping a clean home during the holidays seems almost impossible?!
Maybe it’s because we are inside more now that it’s winter…
Maybe it’s because we’ve poured all of our productive energy into eating pie…
Maybe it’s because we have two furry friends running around who seem to shed their own weight in fur everyday.
Since this post on the pet rake (the best way to get fur out of carpet) is one of the most popular posts on my blog, I know that I am not alone in my struggle against pet hair.
I’ve recently discovered another tool that makes the battle against pet hair easier. If you’ve got furry friends, you need to check this out. Or if you’re looking for the perfect gift for a pet lover, this is it.
So let me set the stage…
We have not one, but two, dogs in our home. Sofia is an 11-year old rough coat border collie mix. I never thought her shedding could be outmatched. That is until we adopted Ryder, now 2 years old. He’s a smooth coat border collie mix so I foolishly thought he’d shed less. But he definitely produces more fur balls around the house.
We always struggled with Sofia’s black fur on our light carpet, until we discovered the carpet rake.
I thought a short hair dog with white and brown hair would make less noticeable fur messes. I was totally wrong.
Twice in the last week, strangers have asked me, “Do you have a cat?” I look down knowingly at my black yoga pants covered in gray hairs and say, “No, just two dogs that shed all over me.”
Ryder’s undercoat is short gray fur. It forms very obvious tumbleweeds across my dark wood floors.
I always take extra care to clean up the pet hair before playdates and dinner parties. No one wants to see the fur tumbleweeds or go home with pants covered in dog hair.
Cleaning my wood floors became a multi-step ordeal. Since we have nearly 1,000 sq. ft. of wood floor running from our front door all the way through our kitchen, sometimes it’s a multi-day process to get the floor mopped.
Here’s what my weekly mopping process used to look like:
- Sweep the floors, filling and emptying 3-4 dust pans of fur. Or vacuum the wood floor with the bare wood setting on our Dyson, emptying a vacuum canister halfway through that’s is full way beyond the max fill line.
- If I don’t mop the same day, repeat step 1 before mopping.
- Use a classic mop and bucket of soapy water to mop the floor. (I’ve tried the Swiffer but I think it takes the same amount of time, doesn’t clean as well, and leaves streaks.)
- After mopping the entire floor, towel it dry—either by getting one of my kids to crawl around with towels or by skating around on a towel myself. I have to dry the floors so the dogs don’t leave wet paw prints all over the place.
- Collapse and take a nap, especially if I did it all in one day.
Meanwhile, I had no idea there was a solution to all my floor cleaning woes.
I recently got curious about steam mops as a way to make the mopping part of my process easier. That’s when I found the floor cleaning tool of my dreams…
Now I have a new one-step process, replacing all the steps above, thanks to my new tool the Bissell Symphony All-in-One Vacuum and Steam Mop. Yes, it’s an all-in-one floor cleaning tool. I had no idea such a thing existed.
Now cleaning my wood floors is one simple step. The Symphony has easily cut my floor cleaning time by more than half and I know my floors are much cleaner. It’s so easy I clean my floors more than once a week now.
It vacuums and mops at the same time!
Here’s what I love most about the Symphony:
- I don’t have to sweep or vacuum before mopping. I can vacuum while mopping.
- It came with four washable mop heads. Two for light cleaning and two for heavier duty cleaning.
- It also comes with an attachment for Steamboost Pads—disposable cleaning wipes. The Symphony came with a few to try out and I really like them. They work great for the really yucky messes, like when your son misses the toilet completely.
- The floor dries super fast after mopping. The steam works hot and fast and drys almost instantly. I don’t have to towel dry my floors before letting the dogs out.
- The steam mop holds enough water to steam my entire wood floor on the high steam setting.
- It sucks up dog food easily! I even sucked up a dryer sheet once and it went right into the canister. There’s no brush for things to get caught in like on a traditional vacuum.
- The pet hair release valve (pictured below) on the vacuum canister is awesome. It pushes all the pet hair out into the trash.
There’s only a few downsides to note:
- The power cord is very long, but in my house I have to unplug and move the cord halfway through. We have to do the same with our vacuum. The thing is with the steam mop it takes a moment for the steam to turn back on after you move the plug. It’s less than a minute, so it’s not too bad. I just take a break and drink a glass of water.
- The Symphony is too hard for my kids to maneuver, especially when the vacuum is on. My oldest used to enjoy helping me mop, but now he prefers other chores.
- Steam mopping may not be safe for all floor types. We have engineered hardwood and I can use the high steam setting. All flooring types may not respond the same to steam cleaning.
- Who really wants to spend $135 on a mop?! I was against the idea at first too. But when you factor in that it’s a steam mop and also a vacuum and it cuts your floor cleaning time by more than half, it’s worth every penny.
- My pups are terrified of the mop now, because it’s a vacuum.
I’m so glad I found the Bissell Symphony. It’s eliminated a lot of the stress I had about cleaning up after the dogs. It works pretty well on snowy bootprints too ;) I like it so much that I’m vacuum/mopping 2-3 times a week now in the same amount of time. If you’re looking for an easier way to clean up pet hair and mop your floors, definitely check out the Symphony.
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