How to Use a Shark Steam Mop – Complete Tutorial

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As excited as you are to start using your new cleaning appliance, it’s wise to take the time to learn how to use a Shark steam mop the right way. Below is the complete Shark steam mop manual, including some of the most important things to avoid while using the steam mop to guarantee your safety.

How to Use Shark Steam Mop Complete Manual

Firstly, always make sure the steam mop is unplugged from the wall when not in use. Never fill the mop, attach the mop head, change or remove the microfiber cleaning pad when the mop is plugged into the wall.

To prolong the life of your Shark steam mop, use distilled water. Do not add cleaning solutions, scented perfumes, oils or any other chemicals to the water inside the Shark steam mop’s tank. Putting anything else other than water may damage the unit and make it unsafe for you and your family.

With the important caveats out of the way, here’s how to use a Shark steam mop:

Getting started

Before using your Shark steam mop, you need to assemble it first.

When assembling your Shark steam mop, there may be a little water in or around the water tank. This is because Shark tests all their steam mops 100% before you buy them, so you get a high-quality steam mop.

Here’s how to assemble your Shark steam mop:

  1. Insert the mop handle end labeled “Front” into the steam mop body. Make sure it is inserted past the line printed on the pole. Secure the assembled handle and pole by using the large screw and a Phillips or a flat head screwdriver (screwdriver not included).
  2. Use the lavender loop on the side of the microfiber cleaning pad to slide mop head into the pad pocket. Then secure the quick fasteners on the top of the pocket to lock in place.
  3. Snap the mop head into the base to secure it.
  4. Turn the water tank cap counterclockwise and remove it from the tank.
  5. Use the filling flask and pour water into the tank. Please don’t overfill.
  6. Replace the cap on the water tank.

Always use the filling flash when filling the Shark steam mop tank.

Before using the Shark steam mop (important)

Don’t use the Shark steam mop on unsealed wood or unglazed ceramic floors. On surfaces that have been treated with wax or some no wax floors, the sheen may be removed by the heat and steam action.

Also, do not use the Shark steam mop on leather, wax polished furniture or floors, synthetic fabrics, velvet or other delicate, steam sensitive materials. Use the Shark steam mop on flat, horizontal surfaces.

Do not use it on walls, counters or windows.

It is always recommended to test an isolated area of the surface to be cleaned before proceeding. We recommend that you check the use and care instructions from the floor manufacturer.

Make sure you don’t use the mop without attaching a microfiber cleaning pad and adding water to the tank first. When you are using the mop for the first time, it might take the Shark steam mop longer than the normal 30 seconds to start steaming, so please be patient.

Using the Shark steam mop

The Shark steam mop needs water to make steam! Never use your Shark steam mop without water in the tank. It can cause damage. Here are the steps on how to use a Shark steam mop:

1. Sweep or vacuum the floors first

Before using your Shark steam mop, it is recommended by Shark to sweep or vacuum your floors. While it may sound simple, many people neglect sweeping or vacuuming their floors prior to steam mopping.

You could alternatively sweep if you don't have a vacuum cleaner, but good suction power will pull lint, dust, and other surface debris from the cracks, preventing them from dirtying the mop pad.

2. Plug the Shark steam mop into a 120-volt outlet

Pull and twist the quick release cord holder to unwrap the power cord completely. Plug the Shark steam mop into a 120-volt electrical outlet. The ON/STANDBY switch will flash blue.

If the light does not turn on, please troubleshoot the issue right here.

3. Choose between three steam settings

A Shark steam mop has three unique steam settings. Each setting delivers a certain amount of steam to provide the best cleaning results for different surfaces. Here’s how to choose a Shark steam mop setting:

  1. DUST - Press the ON/STANDBY button once for DUST setting. The DUST setting is ideal for laminate, bamboo, hardwood, and marble. It is recommended for light cleaning and dusting, loosening and lifting light dirt, and sanitizing floors.
  2. MOP - Press the ON/STANDBY button a second time to activate the MOP setting. The MOP setting is ideal for hardwood, marble, tile, and stone. It is recommended for basic, everyday cleaning, removing spots and smaller messes, cleaning moderate trafficked areas, and sanitizing floors.
  3. SCRUB - Press the ON/STANDBY button a third time to activate the SCRUB setting. The SCRUB setting is ideal for hardwood, tile, stone, linoleum. It is recommended for tough cleaning and removing stuck-on messes and/or stains, deep cleaning heavily trafficked areas, cutting through heavy dirt and grime, and sanitizing floors.

You can also use the SCRUB setting with the carpet glider, which helps to freshen area rugs and carpet (a little more on that below). However, the SCRUB mode is not recommended for continuous cleaning on hardwood.

4. Use the Shark steam mop in a forward and backward motion

Clean your floors with a forward and backward motion.

The great thing about a Shark steam mop is that it works on any type of floor. If you are cleaning laminate or hardwood floors, move the mop in the same direction as the grain.

Press the ON/STANDBY button until the light flashes to stop the steam.

Never leave the Shark steam mop in one spot on any surface for any period of time when the microfiber pad is still attached to the unit. This will damage your floors.

When one side of the microfiber cleaning pad gets dirty, just flip the mop head and you can quickly start using the other side. When the water tank is empty, the steam mop will stop producing steam. You can refill the water tank at any time as long as the mop is unplugged from the outlet.

IMPORTANT: Please wait 2-3 minutes for the Shark steam mop to cool off before removing the mop head or the microfiber cleaning pad. Never leave the steam mop with a damp/wet microfiber cleaning pad on any floor.

5. Need to clean carpets? Use the carpet glider

The carpet glider can be used with the all-purpose head to lightly steam your carpet and area rugs. Just place the mop head with the microfiber cleaning pad attached on top of the glider. It is recommended to use the SCRUB steam setting when using the carpet glider. This ensures the best possible results.

With the Shark steam mop set to SCRUB and the carpet glider attached, Move the steam mop back and forth across a section of the carpet. Keep in mind, however, the Shark steam mop is great for grooming and freshening your carpets, though it won’t clean or remove heavy stains from your carpet or area rugs.

Related: Best steam mops with carpet glider

6. Empty the water tank and store properly

When you have finished using the Shark steam mop, press the ON/STANDBY switch until the LED light turns flashing BLUE. This stops the unit from steaming. Unplug the cord from the outlet and place the mop into the upright position. Be sure to let the unit cool for at least 3 minutes.

Next, remove the microfiber cleaning pad by releasing the quick fasteners and using the lavender loop on the side of the pocket, avoiding contact with the hot pad or dirt.

Empty the water tank before storing your Shark steam mop. Remove the water tank cap and empty the tank over a sink. Replace the water cap. To store the Shark steam mop hanging up, first remove the head (after it has cooled and the steam has been released) then hang on a large hook.


And there you have it, the complete Shark steam mop manual. By taking the time to learn how to use a Shark steam mop, you can use the machine effectively and avoid causing damage to the unit.

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