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What is a Handheld Scrubber?

By Sheri Cyprus
Updated May 16, 2024
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A handheld scrubber can be any type of cleaning brush or tool used to remove dirt or debris. The smallest handheld scrubbers consist of a bristled brush or cleansing pad attached to a handle designed to be gripped by the fingers and thumb. The largest type of these scrubbers is a cleaning brush or pad that fits onto the end of a telescopic, or extending, handle. Different kinds of handheld scrubber are used to remove stains from carpets, floors, outdoor areas, windows and walls.

Long-handled scrubbers make cleaning upper walls and higher windows possible. This type of handheld scrubber is often sold in a boxed kit with several attachments that fit onto the telescoping, collapsible rod. The attachments may be brushes with different types of bristles, such as soft for gentle cleaning and coarse for scrubbing tougher surfaces.

Cleaning brushes made for outdoor surfaces are typically hard-bristled. For instance, a handheld scrubber made for cleaning the tough, baked-on grime of outdoor barbecues is made of tough material that may include some metallic fibers for extra stain removing power. Handheld brushes made for scrubbing decks and patios are usually quite stiff-bristled and used with water or a cleaner to help loosen the dirt.

A floor scrubber for indoor floors often has soft bristles so as not to damage flooring materials. A handheld scrubber can be used to clean grouting between floor tiles as well as the flooring itself. Some types of vinyl or linoleum floors with embossed patterns have little dents or grooves as part of their design. These crevices tend to trap dirt which regular floor mops may not adequately remove. A scrubber that's handheld and allows the person cleaning the flooring to get down on the floor can help get the best dirt removal results.

Some carpet cleaning products and spot removers for rugs or upholstery are sold with small brushes attached. Other products require the user to follow the directions for what type of applicator to use with the cleaner. Typically, specific applicators are needed to remove different spots from carpets as instructed on the label. The method varies according to the type of spot; some stains shouldn't be rubbed or brushed in or it could make the stain soak into the carpet even further. In that case, a handheld cloth rather than a scrubber should be used to blot or pat the cleaner onto the stain.

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