Swiffer mops and brooms can be very convenient cleaning tools. However, if you don't want to purchase either a Swiffer set or the wet and dry disposable cloths that are used on the bases, you can improvise. A homemade Swiffer is as reliable as the store-bought version and can save money.
When making a homemade Swiffer, there are a couple different options that you can turn to for the base. In terms of convenience and simplicity, an inexpensive sponge mop is the best makeshift option. A sponge mop is about the same size as a Swiffer, and the cleaning pads can be secured over its head with spring-loaded clothespins.
Of course, if you already have a Swiffer base, you can use the homemade cleaning pads with it. By simply eliminating the need to purchase the cleaning pads at the store, you can save money.
Cleaning Cloth Substitute
Swiffer cleaning pads come in both dry and wet versions. The dry cleaning cloths are made of a soft material that have a bit of static cling to pick up dust and dirt. Dryer sheets and pantyhose are made of similar material, as are cloth diaper liners. Additionally, any sort of thick, clingy fabric would work nicely. Cloth diapers, for example, are particularly good at picking up dust. To make the fabric extra-clingy, wash it with liquid fabric softener. This will make the fabric's fibers more pliable and able to scoop up dust. If you find that the cloth isn't picking up enough dust on its own, spritz it with dusting spray.
To make the wet cloths, wet down a thick cloth diaper with warm water, then wring it out until it's barely damp. Attach it to the Swiffer tool, then run it over the floors. If desired, add a small amount of floor-cleaning fluid to the water before soaking the diaper. After you're finished, launder the diaper immediately. The clean pads can be reused.
Using the Swiffer
If you are using a Swiffer base, you should be able to attach your cleaning cloth of choice to the sweeper through the traditional method: Poke the edges of the pad through the pinched holders in the top of the head. If using a pair of pantyhose, wrap the hose around the head and use the holders to pin down the loose ends.
To attach a cleaning pad to the head of a sponge mop, wrap the wet or dry cloth around the head of the mop so that the ends are pulled over the top. Pinch the edges of the pad together with some spring-loaded clothespins; as long as the fabric is pulled tight, the clothespins should keep it in place.