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The Best Carpet Cleaner

Last updated on November 15, 2019

We looked at the top 14 Carpet Cleaners and dug through the reviews from 57 of the most popular review sites including BestReviews, The Spruce, New York Times Wirecutter, Reviews.com, Consumer Reports, Carpet Gurus and more. The result is a ranking of the best Carpet Cleaners.

Best Carpet Cleaner

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Our Picks For The Top Carpet Cleaners

Show Contents
Our Take
Experts Included
Pros
Cons
  The Best Overall

Bissell

Big Green Professional

Overall Take

Professional-Grade CleanerThe Bissell Big Green Professional is an affordable model that will give your carpet a professional-grade cleaning.

Experts Included
DWYM Home Experts plus The Spruce, BestReviews, Reviews.com, Consumer Reports, Carpet Gurus and 2 more. Along with user reviews from Amazon, Walmart and Best Buy.
Pros
" Looking to invest in a high quality carpet cleaner? This one from Bissell carries a five-star rating from customers for its performance. It has large capacity tanks, which is a time-saver since that means fewer trips back and forth to..."
Cons
"However, the Big Green’s pure stain-lifting power comes with a few serious trade-offs: At 40 pounds and an average price of around $400, it is both the heaviest and most expensive of our contenders (compared to the overall averages of..."
  The Best Value

Hoover

Power Scrub Deluxe Carpet Cleaner

Overall Take

Lightweight and PowerfulThe Hoover Power Scrub Deluxe Carpet Cleaner is lightweight, easy to use and comes with lots of accessories.

Experts Included
DWYM Home Experts plus The Spruce, BestReviews, Consumer Reports, Top Ten Reviews. Along with user reviews from Amazon, Home Depot and Walmart.
Pros
" A number one best seller in its category, this carpet cleaner from Hoover wins the top award for its performance. Featuring a SpinScrub Brush System, it can clean the fibers of the carpet from all angles to get the most..."
Cons
"Some incidents of leakage and breakage."

Bissell

3624 SpotClean Portable Carpet Cleaner

Overall Take

Easy to TransportUse the Bissell 3624 SpotClean Portable Carpet Cleaner to easily move from cleaning the living room downstairs to the bedroom upstairs.

Experts Included
DWYM Home Experts plus . Along with user reviews from Amazon.

Hoover

SmartWash Automatic

Overall Take

Thinks For YouThe Hoover SmartWash Automatic FH52001 has special ForceFlex brushes that get deep into your carpet to remove dirt and debris.

Experts Included
DWYM Home Experts plus Consumer Reports, Top Ten Reviews, Digital Trends. Along with user reviews from Amazon, Walmart and Home Depot.
Pros
" Highs: Cleaning performance was good. - Drying performance was excellent."
Cons
"It didn’t do a great job for removing water from the carpets which resulting in a longer wait time for the carpets to dry."
Don't just take for granted what one reviewer says. Along with our own experts, DWYM analyzes the top expert reviews of the leading products and generates a score you can actually trust.
21

Products Considered

We identified the majority of the carpet cleaners available to purchase.
14

Products Analyzed

We then selected the leading and most popular products for our team to review.

View All Product Rankings

57

Expert Reviews Included

In addition to our expert reviews, we also incorporate feedback and analysis of some of the most respected sources including: BestReviews, The Spruce, New York Times Wirecutter, Reviews.com, Consumer Reports.

117,479

User Opinions Analyzed

We also incorporate user reviews from the leading retailers including Amazon, Walmart, Best Buy, Target, Home Depot, Google Express.

Our experts reviewed the top 14 Carpet Cleaners and also dug through the reviews from 57 of the most popular review sites including BestReviews, The Spruce, New York Times Wirecutter, Reviews.com, Consumer Reports, Carpet Gurus and more. The result is a ranking of the best of the best Carpet Cleaners.

DWYM is your trusted roduct review source. Our team reviews thousands of product reviews from the trusted top experts and combines them into one easy-to-understand score. Learn more.

Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in their category.

The Best Overall

Bissell Big Green Professional Carpet Cleaner Machine, 86T3

Our Expert Score
7.4
7 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
9.5
4,988 user reviews
Our Take

This affordable Bissell Big Green Professional will give you a professional-grade clean. We like that it's strong enough to stand up to thick carpet types like Berber.

What other experts liked
Looking to invest in a high quality carpet cleaner? This one from Bissell carries a five-star rating from customers for its performance. It has large capacity tanks, which is a time-saver since that means fewer trips back and forth to...
- The Spruce
Power suction. Cord is long (25 feet). Great for carpeted stairs and upholstery.
- BestReviews
As we rinsed out the last water tank and surveyed our weary carpet, it was clear that the Bissell Big Green Professional Grade Carpet Cleaner 86T3 had met the challenge of our malicious staining. Where light orange and brown spots...
- Reviews.com
Highs: Cleaning performance was excellent.
- Consumer Reports
At the end of the day, I have utilized an abundance of unique carpet extractors and cleaners, and the Bissell Big Green 86T3 Carpet Cleaning Machine remains one of my favorites. The unit is incredibly affordable, well built and delivers...
- Carpet Gurus
What other experts didn't like
Some of the critical reviews deal with issues of it needing repairs or issues with it leaking dirty water.
- The Spruce
However, the Big Green’s pure stain-lifting power comes with a few serious trade-offs: At 40 pounds and an average price of around $400, it is both the heaviest and most expensive of our contenders (compared to the overall averages of...
- Reviews.com
Lows: Noise performance was poor for this model. - Drying performance was fair.
- Consumer Reports

The Best Bang For Your Buck

Hoover Power Scrub Deluxe Carpet Cleaner FH50150/FH50150NC

Expert Summarized Score
6.0
4 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
8.3
13,034 user reviews
Our Take

We like that this Hoover carpet cleaner is lightweight and exceptionally easy to use. It uses powerful, 360-degree brushes and a dual V nozzle for even cleaning. Plus, it comes with tools for cleaning stars, upholstery and hard-to-reach crevices.

What other experts liked
A number one best seller in its category, this carpet cleaner from Hoover wins the top award for its performance. Featuring a SpinScrub Brush System, it can clean the fibers of the carpet from all angles to get the most thorough wash. Using water and detergent first, the device then...
- The Spruce
October 11, 2018 | Full review
Lightweight with 20-foot cord. Easy to use. Includes dual tanks, a rinse option, and hot air blowers for drying.
- BestReviews
Highs: Drying performance was very good.
- Consumer Reports
July 23, 2018 | Full review
The Power Scrub Deluxe was easy to set up. There is no need to measure soap and water. Just fill the tank with each and the machine mixes it in the proper amounts for you. This machine is also easy to clean. It pulls apart in the spots that matter...
- Top Ten Reviews
June 5, 2018 | Full review
What other experts didn't like
In terms of critical reviews, some have reported water leaking from the bottom or parts breaking over time.
- The Spruce
October 11, 2018 | Full review
Some incidents of leakage and breakage.
- BestReviews
Lows: Cleaning performance was fair. - Noise performance was fair for this model.
- Consumer Reports
July 23, 2018 | Full review
It lacks any specific brushes for getting the edges when cleaning carpets.
- Top Ten Reviews
June 5, 2018 | Full review

Overall Product Rankings

1. Bissell Big Green Professional Carpet Cleaner Machine, 86T3

Overall Score: 9.0
Reviews Included: 10

2. Hoover Power Scrub Deluxe Carpet Cleaner FH50150/FH50150NC

Overall Score: 8.6
Reviews Included: 8

3. Bissell 3624 SpotClean Portable Carpet Cleaner

Overall Score: 8.5
Reviews Included: 1

4. Hoover SmartWash Automatic FH52001

Overall Score: 8.4
Reviews Included: 6

5. Hoover PowerDash Pet FH50700 carpet cleaner

Overall Score: 8.3
Reviews Included: 7

6. Bissell PowerLifter PowerBrush 1622

Overall Score: 8.2
Reviews Included: 10

7. Hoover Turbo Scrub Carpet Cleaner FH50130

Overall Score: 8.1
Reviews Included: 4

8. Bissell DeepClean Lift-Off Deluxe Pet 24A4

Overall Score: 8.1
Reviews Included: 7

9. Rug DoctorMighty Pro X3

Overall Score: 7.6
Reviews Included: 10

10. Bissell ProHeat 2X Revolution Pet Pro 1986

Overall Score: 7.4
Reviews Included: 10

11. Bissell DeepClean Premier Pet 17N4

Overall Score: 7.1
Reviews Included: 8

14. Bissell CrossWave 1785A

Overall Score: 5.9
Reviews Included: 6

Our Findings

Bissell Big Green Professional Carpet Cleaner Machine, 86T3

Top Pick

Bissell Big Green Professional Carpet Cleaner Machine, 86T3 (Kitchen)


List Price: $429.99 USD
New From: $399.00 USD In Stock
Used from: $399.00 USD In Stock

What We Liked: This affordable Bissell Big Green Professional will give you a professional-grade clean. We like that it’s strong enough to stand up to thick carpet types like Berber.

Hoover Power Scrub Deluxe Carpet Cleaner FH50150/FH50150NC

Runner-Up

Hoover Power Scrub Deluxe Carpet Cleaner Machine, Upright Shampooer, FH50150, Red (Misc.)


List Price: $219.99 USD
New From: $127.67 USD In Stock
Used from: $127.67 USD In Stock

What We Liked: We like that this Hoover carpet cleaner is lightweight and exceptionally easy to use. It uses powerful, 360-degree brushes and a dual V nozzle for even cleaning. Plus, it comes with tools for cleaning stars, upholstery and hard-to-reach crevices.

Bissell 3624 SpotClean Portable Carpet Cleaner

Best for Portability

Bissell 3624 SpotClean Professional Portable Carpet Cleaner - Corded (Misc.)


List Price: $159.99 USD
New From: $159.99 USD In Stock
Used from: $159.99 USD In Stock

What We Liked: Whether you need to carry a carpet cleaner up a flight of steps or to a cleaning job, the Bissell 3624 SpotClean Portable Carpet Cleaner is your best bet. The unit has an extra long power cord and a 5-ft hose, which is handy when cleaning a large room. As an added bonus, you’ll also get a tool for cleaning stairs and an attachment for tackling touch stains.

Hoover SmartWash Automatic FH52001

Strong Contender

Hoover Smartwash Automatic Carpet Cleaner, FH52000, Turquoise (Kitchen)


List Price: $249.99 USD
New From: $189.99 USD In Stock
Used from: $189.99 USD In Stock

What We Liked: If you’re searching for a carpet cleaner that thinks for you, look no further than the Hoover SmartWash Automatic FH52001. This cleaner automatically mixes the detergent, cleans the floors when you push forward and dries the carpets when you pull it backward. Each purchase also comes with a host of accessories, including an antimicrobial pet tool.

Bissell PowerLifter PowerBrush 1622

Also Great

BISSELL PowerLifter PowerBrush Upright Carpet Cleaner and Shampooer, 1622 (Kitchen)


List Price: $109.99 USD
New From: $104.99 USD In Stock
Used from: $104.99 USD In Stock

What We Liked: Thanks to the four row dual rotating brushes, the Bissell PowerLifter PowerBrush 1622 is able to scrub and lift away dirt that has been deeply embedded into your carpets. The unit also has a wide cleaning path, which means you’ll finish cleaning your carpets much sooner than you could with other models. Once you’ve finished using the carpet cleaner, all you need to do is pop the water tank out, clean the lint trap and dump out the dirty water.

Our Carpet Cleaner Buying Guide

Despite our best efforts, carpet inevitably becomes stained. Kids and pets, as well as plain old accidents, can leave your carpet in desperate need of a thorough cleaning. And let’s not forget the regular wear and tear of daily life.

Even if you don’t have a major carpet “emergency” on your hands, you’ll still need to do a thorough deep cleaning periodically to rid your carpet of the everyday dirt and grime that accumulates. You may not even realize how dingy your carpet has become until it’s been cleaned. The process can revitalize old carpet and make it look like new again. If you’ve been thinking about replacing your old grimy carpet, investing in a nice carpet cleaner may just change your mind and help you save some money.

It’s not just the improved appearance of your flooring that will inspire you. Certain types of messes can leave your carpet smelling less than fresh. Repeated pet accidents, in particular, can trap foul odors in your carpet that only vigorous machine cleaning can remove.

Carpet cleaning is also the most effective way to destroy the allergens and bacteria that your carpet harbors. Clean carpet can lay the foundation for an equally clean and healthy household.

Hiring a professional to clean your carpet is an option, but buying a machine to do it yourself can be the more cost-effective route in the long run. One factor that will determine how efficiently your device lifts embedded dirt is the size and power of the motor. For example, the Bissell Big Green Professional has a two-motor design that makes it ideal for sucking up ground-in dirt.

Another factor to consider in buying a carpet cleaner is the tanks. Separate tanks for water and the cleaning solution will make for quicker and easier refilling, and the smaller the tank, the more you’ll have to stop to refill it.

You should also consider how heavy and cumbersome the machine is and weigh that against your home’s needs. If you need to bring it up and down several flights of stairs, for example, a lighter model, like the Hoover SmartWash Automatic FH52001, which weighs in at less than 19 pounds, will make the job a lot easier.

Some models also offer versatility, as they can easily switch between an upright cleaner and a portable spot cleaner for extra tough spots and stains.

DWYM Fun Fact

William Sprague started the first woven carpet mill in Philadelphia in 1791.  The next big innovation in carpet came in 1839 when Erastus Bigelow invented the power loom for weaving carpets, which tripled carpet production by 1850.

Over the next century and beyond, carpet underwent a number of changes and waxed and waned in its overall popularity. The style of carpet that was “in” at any given time also changed (shag carpet on the ’70s, anyone?).  In the 1950s and ’60s, the wide availability of synthetic fiber carpet made it the flooring of choice in homes across the country, just as suburban sprawl was taking hold.

Carpet continued growing in popularity for generations until an inevitable “backlash” came from those who grew up with wall-to-wall carpeting and preferred hardwood floors once they were adults with their own homes. Today, people remain fiercely divided on whether carpet or hardwood is the best flooring option at home.

One thing that’s always in style? Clean carpet. In addition to everyday dirt and grime, you may be surprised that your carpet may also be hiding bugs, mold, skin flakes, pollen, pet waste and tons of germs. Yuck! Ready to get that carpet cleaner yet?

The Carpet Cleaner Tips and Advice

  • Before the cleaning, you should conduct a quick pre-clean. Much like you wouldn’t leave your dirty clothes lying around before letting a professional cleaning team in, you’ll have to do a little legwork before you break out your carpet cleaning machine. First, vacuum your carpet as normal to pick up any surface debris. Think of it like sweeping your hard floors before you mop them.
  • Next, you’ll want to pre-treat any especially tough stains to give a little boost to the cleaner’s power. You can use a commercial solution, or there are a number of surprising substances you probably already have that can do the trick, depending on the type of stain. For example, club soda is great for beer and wine stains while dishwashing detergent works well on grease stains.
  • Make sure you move furniture out of the way before getting started. Some types of wood furniture can release dye into a wet carpet and stain it. The same goes for metal, which can leave rust stains. This will also make it much easier for you to keep track of where you’ve already vacuumed, as well as avoid stepping in areas you’ve just cleaned.
  • Give your carpet plenty of time to dry. How long that takes depends on the carpet’s thickness. Usually, it will take between four and six hours after cleaning before it’s fully dry and safe to walk on again.
  • When your carpet is dry, vacuum it again for a perfect finish.
  • Your carpet cleaner can pull double duty in a lot of cases. It’s not just your carpets that can be cleaned with the device. The Hoover Power Scrub Deluxe Carpet Washer comes equipped with an eight-foot, ready-to-use hose and upholstery tool that can be used on furniture, stairs and other hard-to-reach spaces.
  • Don’t wait until your carpet is downright filthy to clean it. Think of it like going to the dentist. If you keep up with regular cleanings, you’ll get better results.
  • With that in mind, prevention can be the best medicine. No matter how tidy you are, your carpet will eventually need a deep clean. But you can reduce the frequency and effort you put in by taking steps to keep your carpet in the best shape possible in between cleanings. Just like you should brush and floss regularly between dentist visits, use good doormats at the entrances to your home, and consider asking people to remove their shoes before entering your home (including your kids!). You may also consider investing in some large area rugs, depending on the space.

About The Author

Avatar
Kate Streit 

Kate Streit is a professional writer based in Chicago. When she's not scrolling for her dream home on Trulia, she's looking for inspiration on how to keep her rental on-trend. She loves researching home and garden products that can help save time and money.