The Evolution of Cleaning – The History Behind 7 Common Cleaning Tools

History Behind Common Cleaning Tools

Apart from the cleaning service itself, there are other factors to consider when looking for the best service providers in Dubai. When determining whether a cleaning service in Dubai is reliable or not, make sure to check the condition and quality of tools they use.

We tend to take our cleaning tools and products for granted, even though they have a large part in creating the clean and healthy environment that we live in. But cleaning, as we know it today, hasn’t always been the same. This blog summarizes the history behind 7 common cleaning tools that just might make you appreciate them a bit more.

Soaps and Detergents

Did you know that soap making goes as far back as 2800 BC? Typically made with animal and vegetable oil, these ancient soaps were a commodity for the elite. It wasn’t until the 17th Century that soap came into general use, and by the 19th Century it was booming commercially. In the First World War scarce natural fats gave rise to research in synthetic alternatives and, in 1916, Germany gave the world modern detergent!

History Behind Common Cleaning ToolsΒ History Behind Common Cleaning Tools


The first brooms were just bundles of twigs or discarded straw tied together with twine. These evolved into crude broomsticks when people began tying them to the end of a stick. In 1797, Levi Dickenson, a farmer in Massachusetts, used sorghum straws to create an improved version of the broom for his wife. Since then, the design and materials of this tool have undergone various alterations. Today, plastic bristles have replaced the straw, as the latter tends to fall out.

History Behind Common Cleaning ToolsΒ History Behind Common Cleaning Tools


The first known mentions of the mop in the English language (then spelled β€œmappe”) date back to 1496. Strips of coarse cloth or yarn made the mop, while handles of multiple patented varieties came much later in the 19th Century. Recent innovations have allowed for new, and improved designs, such as the mechanisms that let you squeeze your mop dry without getting your hands wet, and the flat mops that waste less water by having a larger spread.

History Behind Common Cleaning ToolsΒ History Behind Common Cleaning Tools

The Squeegee

The earliest squeegees were used on ship decks in the 19th Century. These early models had rubber blades (usually two) screwed into a long metal or wooden frame that was bulky and difficult to use. The lightweight, single-bladed version is attributed to Ettore Steccone, who patented his remarkable β€œthe New Deal” squeegee in 1936. Modern variants come with foam padding on one side of the blade that allows for simultaneous lathering and wiping.

History Behind Common Cleaning ToolsΒ History Behind Common Cleaning Tools

Vacuum Cleaners

Early vacuum cleaners were massive and had to be drawn by horse from door to door! But in 1907, James Spangler had the brilliant idea to combine the design of the carpet sweeper with the mechanics of a vacuum, creating the earliest known version of a portable vacuum cleaner. The vacuum has perhaps evolved most significantly, marked by the creation of the first cordless, handheld mini-vacuum cleaner by Black & Decker nearly 30 years ago!

History Behind Common Cleaning ToolsΒ Β History Behind Common Cleaning Tools

Robotic Cleaners

The first cleaning robot was actually invented in 1996 by Swedish company Electrolux, but it was the Roomba that took off commercially in 2002. The Roomba came fitted with sensors that allowed it to avoid obstacles such as getting caught in corners or falling down stairs, adding to its popularity and practicality as a modern cleaning tool. Today, more advanced robotic cleaners like the Dyson 360 Eye feature peripheral cameras for improved navigation.

History Behind Common Cleaning Tools


Your phone no longer just cleans junk files and internal memory. It can now be used to clean your home! With the rise of integrated app technology, you can download apps that allow you to operate cleaning machines with a few simple taps on your smart screen. You can set active times on your robotic cleaners or have the AC deodorize your bedroom while you’re away – cleaning made easy! You can even download the ServiceMarket app to make an instant cleaning service booking. Simply tap in your location details and get an experienced cleaning company to send a cleaner to your home at your preferred time.

History Behind Common Cleaning Tools


With technologies rapidly evolving, we’re well on the way to even better, and more efficient ways of cleaning. ServiceMarket provides an easy way for you to get your cleaning done and save you time and money. Head over to the site today and book home cleaning professionals in Dubai as per your convenience, or get free quotes from multiple vetted cleaning companies.

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