How to Clean Dirty Doormats at Home


Because they are used on porches and other outdoor spaces, doormats are rugged enough to withstand wet and harsh weather. This sturdy construction makes them easy to clean; many can simply be rinsed off occasionally with a garden hose. Use regular household dish soap and disinfectants when the mats need a deeper clean.

Things You'll Need

  • Broom
  • Wet/dry vacuum
  • Bucket
  • Warm water
  • Dish soap or upholstery shampoo
  • Scrub brush
  • Garden hose
  • Disinfectant spray

Step 1: Shake It Off

Hang your doormat over a clothesline and hit it with a broom to smack dust and dirt out of it. You can also shake the mat vigorously or smack it against the sidewalk or a wall.

Step 2: Vacuum It

After a good shake or beating, vacuum the mat to remove any remaining dirt and dust. Use a shop vac so as not to get your indoor vacuum cleaner excessively dirty.

Step 3: Scrub It

Fill a bucket with warm water and a few drops of dish soap or upholstery cleaner. Use a scrub brush dipped in the soapy water to remove any stains or heavily soiled spots on the mat. Rinse the mat with a garden hose or in your sink, and allow it to dry thoroughly before putting it back on your porch.


    • Rubber, nonabsorbent mats are best because they are easy to scrub and won't hold water or harbor mildew. Any mat designed for outdoor use, however, should be tough enough to withstand a good scrubbing.
    • Make sure the rug has a rubber backing or other slip-resistant feature to keep you and your guests from falling.

Step 4: Disinfect It

Once a week, spray your doormat with an aerosol disinfectant to kill any germs that may have transferred from shoes to the mat. This will help prevent family members and guests from bringing germs into the house.

Step 5: Care for It

Protect your mat from mold, mildew and staining by hanging it to dry after heavy rain or after it has spent some time buried under snow.

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