The Smart Mop -- basically a ShamWow towel on the end of a stick -- employs bright orange strips of highly absorbent material to soak up big spills without drips and leaks. You wring out the mop afterward by twisting the handle and can (theoretically, at least) remove the mop head, run it through the washing machine and dryer, then screw it back on.
The Smart Mop receives mixed reviews. It seems the mop works in picking up the mess, but it's not easy to use and owners complain about its durability. This product has been the subject of two "Does it Work?" TV news segments. A reviewer at Cape Girardeau, Mo., station KFVS says the Smart Mop works well on various spills but is difficult to clean, isn't too durable and, after washing, leaves bits of fuzz in the washer. Philadelphia TV reporter Michelle Buckman also says the Smart Mop works as advertised, but neither the consumer reporter nor her volunteer tester attempt to clean the product afterward.
At HonestInfomercialReviews.com, one Smart Mop owner says the mop head is difficult to remove and replace -- a complaint echoed by a very disappointed owner posting on Target.com. Wired magazine's reviewer is the least impressed of all, calling the Smart Mop a "gray-market ShamWow." We also found numerous references to breaking handles, often on the very first use; one woman says she saw a live demonstration (at a home show) where this happened.
1. KFVS (Cape Girardeau, Mo.)
In this news segment, reporter Lauren Keith and a volunteer tester try out the Smart Mop on various spills, including soda, water, and a mixture of brown sugar, ketchup and mustard. The product performs as advertised; it cleans the messes and doesn't leak or drip. Keith does note that it's difficult to clean and find replacement mop heads. She adds in a postscript: "It left little bits of orange fabric fuzz all over my washer.É It doesn't appear to be all that durable."
Review: Smart Mop: Does it Work?, Lauren Keith, Oct. 28, 2009
2. WXTF (Philadelphia)
A reporter for this television station asks a woman to try out the Smart Mop on a spilled can of soda, and a messy pile of ketchup and flour. The mop works both times (though more than one pass is required), and the elderly tester seems to have no trouble wringing it out. The Smart Mop is declared a "deal."
Review: Deal or Dud: Smart Mop, Michelle Buckman
Reviewer Rick Broida isn't impressed with the Smart Mop, which he describes as a "gray-market ShamWow." He says it isn't very absorbent and requires a lot of effort to wring out after use. Worst of all, he says, "After a few minutes of mopping, the plastic screw-plug at the bottom end of the contraption came loose." The Smart Mop gets a score of 3 out of 10 which, according to Wired's rating system means "serious flaws; proceed with caution."
Review: So-Called Smart Mop Is Actually a Dumb Idea, Rick Broida, April 15, 2010
Of the six or so customers posting here, half say the Smart Mop is a piece of junk. One owner says the handle broke on the first use, another after a month, and a third complains that it's difficult to remove the mop head for cleaning. The others say they love the Smart Mop and that it works as advertised.
Review: Smart Mop, Contributors to Target.com
An anonymous reviewer says she has owned a Smart Mop for years, and she objectively points out the pros and cons of the product. She says the mop head is extremely difficult to remove and replace, and that it doesn't work as well over time. She adds that she witnessed a live demonstration at the Calgary Home Show in which the handle snapped right off.
Review: Smart Mop Review -- Is it Worth Buying?, "Theresa", Feb. 16, 2010