5 Top Carpet Cleaners for Your Home
If your carpet is looking dingy, you may be wondering: What's the best carpet steam cleaner? Read on for our top picks for carpet cleaners to fit your household's needs, so you can get your carpets looking and smelling fresh.
Every product is independently selected by our editors. If you buy something through our links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Best Easy-to-Use Carpet Cleaner
The Hoover Smartwash Automatic Carpet Cleaner is designed to be as simple to use as a vacuum. You don’t need to worry about mixing the right amount of cleaner or pulling a trigger to dispense cleaning solution with this machine. All you have to do is push it forward and the Smartwash dispenses the right amount of water and cleaning solution as it scrubs, then slowly pull it back to dry. This 19-1/2-lb. machine has a 1-gal. water tank and an 8-ft. hose with attachments for spot cleaning.
A couple pieces of reviewer advice: Go slow and make sure the water tank is properly installed.
For more carpet cleaning help, check out these clever carpet cleaning hacks.
Carpet slimed? Here’s help:
Best Carpet Cleaner for Pets
If you have to deal with removing pet stains and hair, the Bissell ProHeat 2X Revolution Pet Pro Carpet Cleaner is worth a look. The manufacturer touts its CleanShot Pretreater feature, which lets you press a pedal on the machine to target an area for spot cleaning as you shampoo the rug. An upholstery attachment has both wet and dry modes, so you can use the same tool to vacuum pet hair off your couch and then shampoo the area. This 20-lb. machine has a 1-gal. tank and can either deep-clean or quickly clean your rug.
Reviewers especially like how easily the machine comes apart, allowing brushes to be cleaned in a snap.
Best Handheld Carpet Cleaner
If you’re more concerned about spot cleaning than scrubbing your entire carpet, a handheld cleaner could be the way to go. The Bissell Spotclean Pro impresses reviewers with its suction and stain removal power for such a small, portable machine. This 13-lb. cleaner features a .75-gal. water tank, which is larger than many other portable cleaners. Its 5-ft. hose attaches to either a 3-in. spot cleaning brush or a 6-in. stair cleaning brush.
Many reviewers note the machine’s hose is a weak point, tending to crack over time. To help prevent this, several reviewers recommend that you skip securing the hose to the machine when storing, since the kink created when the hose is clipped to the machine is where it often fails.
Best Budget Carpet Cleaner
At around $100, the Hoover PowerDash Pet is a compact machine that’s easy to store and easier on your wallet than many other carpet cleaners. Reviewers are often impressed by the machine’s scrubbing power and suction, especially considering how much lighter this 13-lb. machine is compared to other carpet cleaners. As one Amazon reviewer put it: “This little Hoover is so much lighter it is hard to believe what a great job it does! The carpet looks amazingly clean.”
The lower price point does mean the PowerDash Pet doesn’t have special features such as a spot cleaning attachment. It also has a .5-gal. tank, which is small for an upright cleaner and could have you frequently refilling the machine when cleaning a large area.
Best Splurge Carpet Cleaner
The Bissell Big Green Professional Carpet Cleaner is a heavy-duty, professional-grade machine with stain-removing power that consistently impresses reviewers. Reviewers like that this machine cleans on both forward and backward passes, not just when you pull the machine backward, which cuts down on cleaning time. It has separate 1.75-gal. tanks for clean and dirty water to make cleanup easier, a 9-ft. hose with a scrubber attachment for spot cleaning and an extra-large scrubbing brush.
This is a heavy machine, weighing more than 40 lbs. It also has a high price tag, often selling for around $400. If that price gives you pause but you still want to try the machine’s cleaning power, Bissell makes it easy to find places to rent the Big Green Machine.
If you’ve got old carpet that you want to replace, here’s how to save some money by removing it yourself.