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There is no doubt; microfiber is an incredible cleaning tool however it does have limitations. Most of those limitations are a result of microfiber working too well. I recently had a conversation with a customer about this very subject. My customer is an industrial laundry, they’re main business is providing uniform service but they also provide wet mops and dust mop (among other things) to their customers. The products they provide are picked up and laundered every week. They made the decision to switch all of their wet mops and dust mops from cotton/synthetic to microfiber. At first this sounded like a great idea, microfiber cleans better and lasts longer than their cotton and synthetic counter parts. Longevity is key for laundries. However after we gave it some thought we realized that there were certain instances where microfiber wouldn’t be best.

The reason microfiber won’t work for all applications is pretty simple, it works too well. If my customer used a microfiber looped dust mop (which is what they were going to switch to) in a machine shop where metal shavings were all over the floor they would have a hard time getting the microfiber to release the metal shavings once they picked them up. The dust mop would clean the floor very well, but you wouldn’t be able to use it anywhere else because you would risk scratching the floor.

Recently we were clearing out some old inventory in our warehouse. Once we got the shelves emptied out we grabbed a microfiber duster to dust off the shelves. The shelves are unfinished plywood, they’re pretty rough. We found out pretty quickly that this duster wasn’t the best one for the job. It grabbed the splinters on the wood and wouldn’t let go making it nearly impossible to dust the shelves. Another instance where microfiber isn’t best is around extreme heat or exposed flame, since microfiber is made largely from polyester it will melt.


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