Sometimes vacuuming just isn’t enough. People with pets or children can attest to this fact. If a mess is very bad. If it consists of heavy-duty stains. You will need to consider a carpet cleaner for your pets. Since most people have rooms filled with carpet, they need a movable carpet cleaner. That is why the best portable carpet cleaners have become more popular than traditional models.
Portable carpet cleaners can clean your carpet much more effectively than a vacuum. They can help remove the toughest mess. They can even keeping you from having to clean your carpet by hand. For reliability, affordability, and convenience, choose a portable carpet cleaner.
Read on to learn more.
In a hurry? Don't have time for the details? Here are our best picks for Portable Carpet Cleaner
- Bissell SpotBot Pet handsfree Spot and Stain Cleaner with Deep Reach Technology 33N8
- Carpet Cleaning Machine | Rug Doctor Portable Spot Cleaner 5.5 Foot Hose
- Bissell Multi-Purpose Portable Carpet and Upholstery Cleaner, 1400B
- Hoover Power Scrub Deluxe Carpet Cleaner Machine, Upright Shampooer, FH50150, Red
- Hoover Spotless Portable Carpet & Upholstery Spot Cleaner, FH11300PC
- What is a carpet cleaner?
- Different types of carpet cleaners
- What makes a portable carpet cleaner?
- Carpet cleaners vs. vacuums
- What to look for in a portable carpet cleaner
- Top 5 Best Portable Carpet Cleaners 2020 - Comparison table
- #1 Bissell SpotBot Pet handsfree Spot and Stain Cleaner with Deep Reach Technology 33N8
- #2 Rug Doctor Portable Spot Cleaner
- #3 Bissell Multi-Purpose Portable Carpet and Upholstery Cleaner, 1400B
- #4 Hoover Power Scrub Deluxe Carpet Washer FH50150
- #5 Hoover Spotless Portable Carpet & Upholstery Spot Cleaner FH11300PC
- When do I need to use my portable carpet cleaner?
- Tips and tricks for getting the most out of your portable carpet cleaner
- Professionals vs. home cleaning your carpet
- Final Words
What is a carpet cleaner?
Carpet cleaners are sometimes called carpet extractors and carpet shampooers. They remove dirt and stains in a carpet. Carpet cleaners are best used to give your carpet a good deep cleaning.
You can also find carpet cleaners used as spot cleaners. This means that they will remove stains in a certain area of your carpet. You typically will not use a spot carpet cleaner to clean your entire carpet.
Carpet cleaners all have a few important components.
Pump: This component pumps the water and/or cleaning solution from the tank. Pressure levels typically vary from 60-500 psi (pounds per square inch).
Vacuum: The vacuum sucks the dirty water out of your carpet. Motor power varies from model to model.
Solution tanks: Solution tanks hold the clean water. These vary in size from 4.5 to 17 gallons.
Recovery tanks: This is where all the nasty stuff goes when vacuumed up.
Heating unit: Not all carpet cleaners have this component. If your carpet cleaner uses heat, this component provides that feature.
Different types of carpet cleaners
Not all carpet cleaners work the same. A carpet cleaner can actually wash your carpet in a number of different ways. There are also differences between professional carpet cleaning and home carpet cleaners.
Our focus today is on carpet cleaners for the home market. We will not go into extreme length about professional carpet cleaners. It is still important to understand the professional carpet cleaner's job. They will clean your carpet in one of three ways.
Wet Cleaning: This method is very similar to home carpet steamers. They use hot water combined with chemicals to clean the surface of your carpet.
Dry Cleaning: Dry cleaning methods do not use water or steam. They are extremely popular with modern professional carpet cleaners. There are a variety of ways a carpet can be dry cleaned including using special solvents or foam.
Bonnet Cleaning: In this method of carpet cleaning a solution is sprayed on freshly vacuumed carpet. It is then removed with a rotary floor machine. This is the least expensive professional carpet cleaning option.
The home carpet cleaner that you choose will depend on your type of carpet. There are two common options.
Carpet Steamer: Portable carpet steam cleaners are probably the most popular. These use a cleaning solution and hot water to deep clean your carpet. The attached vacuums then remove the chemicals and dirt.
Spot Cleaner: Carpet spot cleaner machines are typically smaller models. They also use the same steam cleaning techniques. Their small size makes them perfect for smaller messes. You can also use them on spaces with less surface area—like stairs. Carpet spot cleaner machines are easier to store than their larger counterparts.
Let's return to the topic of today’s article. Either the carpet steamer or the spot cleaner can be a portable carpet cleaner. Carpet spot cleaner machines are more common. But, you will occasionally find portable carpet steam cleaners.
What makes a portable carpet cleaner?
First and foremost, it can move around your home. They are smaller than vacuums. They are primarily used for cleaning a smaller surface area of your carpet. Portable carpet cleaners can look like a traditional upright or barrel vacuum.
Portable carpet cleaners move easily because they weigh significantly less than professional models. They also have wheels and usually include long cords and hoses. All of these factors combine to make a great working and flexible appliance.
Carpet cleaners vs. vacuums
Carpet cleaners may seem very similar to vacuums. This is true. Still, there are some important differences between the two machines.
Vacuums use suction to remove dirt and grim.
You don't need water or cleaning solution with a vacuum for carpet. This makes it easier to use on a consistent basis. Stains and messes that the vacuum cannot handle will be likely.
Portable carpet cleaners use hot water and chemicals. They give your carpet a deeper clean that it would get with a vacuum.
They are typically heavier than vacuums. They also require more maintenance to use properly. It is therefore unlikely that you will use portable carpet cleaners for everyday clean-up.
In general, we recommend owning both a high-quality vacuum for carpet as well as a portable carpet cleaner. This arrangement will help you keep your carpet as clean as possible.
What to look for in a portable carpet cleaner
There are a lot of portable carpet cleaner models available on the market. The plethora of choices can be overwhelming. But, we’re here to help you.
Below are some of the most important considerations when searching for a portable carpet cleaner.
The heavier the portable carpet cleaner, the more it will sink into your carpet. If you have plush carpet you definitely don't want a heavy portable carpet cleaner. Portable carpet cleaners tend to run slightly heavier than vacuums. For homes with plush carpet just find one with a long hose that doesn't need to be moved much. That will work just fine.
You will want to pick a model with a good amount of suction. High suction enables the portable carpet cleaner to remove as much water from your carpet as possible. You don't want to be left with wet carpet. Wet carpet can attract mildew. No one wants that in their home.
Have a storage plan for your new portable carpet cleaner. You probably don't want it sitting out in a room. Carpet spot cleaner machines tend to be smaller. That makes them easy to store. However, you can't clean an entire room with them.
For more power you may need to sacrifice stability. Knowing your storage needs beforehand is essential.
Length of cord and hose
The longer the power cord and the hose, the easier cleaning becomes. You can clean most of a room without moving the machine too much.
Your decision on cord and hose length depends on a number of factors. Every portable carpet cleaner model is different. If you prefer lighter, compact carpet spot cleaner machines, then a short reach is fine. A heavier machine should have a long cord and hose.
Lots of pet owners look for portable carpet cleaners. They are much better than vacuums at cleaning up accidents and other messes. While all portable carpet cleaners can be used with pets, some are tailored to them. If you need a portable carpet cleaner for pets, make sure to look for the word “pet” on the label.
Portable carpet cleaners work well in homes. They are smaller and lighter than professional carpet cleaners. This does means that their tank size will be smaller.
Using a portable carpet cleaner for heavy cleaning means you need a bigger tank. Those only looking to spot clean occasionally will do fine with a smaller tank.
Always look for a product with a one to two year warranty. Portable carpet cleaners are no different. Most companies will provide a limited warranty that covers defects and parts. Your chosen product should at least provide these services.
Do you want or need extra attachments for your portable carpet cleaner? Unlike vacuums, many portable carpet cleaners do not come with extra attachments. Some models will offer special tools. You will need to look for them specially, however.
Our handy top five list below takes out all the guesswork of purchasing a portable carpet cleaner.
Top 5 Best Portable Carpet Cleaners 2020 - Comparison table
#1 Editor’s Choice
Tough Stain Tool
3-inch Tough Stain Tool
Stair Tool, Upholstery Tool, Crevice Tool
Top Five Best Portable Carpet Cleaner recommendations:
#1 Bissell SpotBot Pet handsfree Spot and Stain Cleaner with Deep Reach Technology 33N8
Bissell’s portable carpet cleaners are some of the best on the market. It is no wonder that they manufacture our top pick. The Bissell SpotBot Pet 33N8 has everything you may want in a portable carpet cleaner. It is light, only fourteen pounds. it also comes with a two-year warranty. Keep in mind that it includes just one tool, the tough stain tool.
If you want multiple accessories, this is probably not the portable carpet cleaner for you. Missing the multiple accessories isn't too much of an issue. The included brush has DeepReach Technology. This technology helps inserts the cleaning product and water deep into your carpet fibers. The powerful motor sucks all the moisture away to completely dry your carpet.
Most importantly, the Bissell spot cleaner pet is an automatic, hands-free device. You can select from two preset cleaning cycles on the machine. Then just walk away while it cleans up the mess. If you want to retain control over the cleaning, the SpotBot Pet also comes with an attached hose and tool.
#2 Rug Doctor Portable Spot Cleaner
Rug Doctor has also created a spot steam cleaner for carpet. It will get any tough job done. This product does not have the automatic, hands-free function of the Bissell. It is also heavier—20.2 lbs. Even so, it comes in a close second to the Bissell. It allows you to clean anywhere, any time.
Like the Bissel spot cleaner pet, Rug Doctor’s Portable Spot Cleaner will clean deep into your carpet. It doesn’t use heat or steam. Instead the machine uses two times the suction power of other portable carpet cleaners. It is also highly portable and has wide-set, large wheels. These make it appropriate for carpet despite its heavy weight.
#3 Bissell Multi-Purpose Portable Carpet and Upholstery Cleaner, 1400B
Bissell is a huge name in the portable carpet cleaner industry. We just had to include another of their products on this list. The Bissell Multi-Purpose Portable Carpet and Upholstery Cleaner 1400B is compact and powerful. It only weighs 9.6 lbs. You will never struggle to get it to the mess.
Bissell cares about the environment. They even include parts made from post-consumer recycled plastic and PVS-free tanks and hoses. This helps keep the Earth healthy. It also protects you and your family.
#4 Hoover Power Scrub Deluxe Carpet Washer FH50150
You can’t make a list of the top portable carpet cleaners or vacuums without including Hoover. The company’s Power Scrub Deluxe Carpet Washer FH50150 is an upright portable carpet cleaner. Its design is slightly heavier at 18.1 lbs. On the plus side, it includes three separate cleaning tools. That is the most of any product on our list.
Hoover specifically designs their portable carpet cleaner to be powerful. The Power Scrub Deluxe comes with a DualV Nozzle. It provides equal and powerful suction. Additionally, the machine uses forces heated air to dry your carpet faster. Finally, the SpinScrub Brush System cleans faster than any other portable carpet cleaner.
#5 Hoover Spotless Portable Carpet & Upholstery Spot Cleaner FH11300PC
Hoover creates upright portable carpet cleaners as well as smaller spot cleaners. With the Spotless Portable Carpet & Upholstery Spot Cleaner FH11300PC you get a lightweight product. It stores easily and has a lot of power. It is also versatile. The included tools allows it to clean carpets and stairs in addition to upholstery.
If you like your appliances as sanitary as possible, the Spotless portable carpet cleaner is for you. The multipurpose tool comes with antimicrobial materials. It will never spread bacteria, mold, or mildew. The hose has Hoover’s patented Self-Clean Technology. This portable carpet cleaner also uses two tanks to keep clean and dirty water separate.
When do I need to use my portable carpet cleaner?
Spot cleaning products only need to be used on a spill. The larger upright portable carpet cleaners should be used on the following schedule.
- Vacuum often. Some recommend at least twice a week.
- Carpet clean before your carpet looks filthy. The dirtier the carpet is, the harder it is to clean.
- Most experts recommend cleaning your carpet whenever you notice spots. At least clean every 12 months for light and medium soiled areas. You will want to carpet clean every 3-6 months for heavy soiled rooms.
- If you have pets, children, or you smoke, you may need to clean your carpet more often.
- Clean stains immediately. Start with water first. Then try detergent. Finally use your portable carpet cleaner.
Tips and tricks for getting the most out of your portable carpet cleaner
When cleaning your carpet, keep the following tips and tricks in mind.
- Vacuum before and after using your portable carpet cleaner.
- With with detergent before using a spot carpet cleaning machine. This ensures all of the mess is cleaned properly.
- Try not to make the carpet too wet. Too much water will require more passes with the portable carpet cleaner. You will also need to wait longer for the carpet to dry.
- Clean stains immediately. Otherwise they can be impossible to remove.
- If your carpet is too wet after you are done cleaning, dry it with fans or towels. Never let your carpet remain too wet.
Professionals vs. home cleaning your carpet
Should you just skip the portable carpet cleaner and hire a professional service? That is a good question. It is one only you can answer. Keep in mind that you can save a lot of money using your own portable carpet cleaner.
Another benefit of cleaning your carpet yourself is that you always have the machine. Anytime there is a spill or stain, you can take care of it. You will not have to wait for an appointment.
There are some drawbacks to using a portable carpet steam cleaner. The first is that it will take time to clean your carpet properly. If you are someone without much time, you may want to hire professionals.
Secondly, portable carpet cleaners do not heat the water as much. They are actually just not as powerful in general. You will not get as effective a clean with a home product as a professional company. Such a trade-off may be acceptable to you. The cost savings will always be on the side of a portable carpet cleaner.
Buying a portable carpet cleaner is a great way to keep your carpet looking good. These appliances have been rising in popularity lately. That has caused a flood of them on the market. If you are confused, all your need to do is to follow our best portable carpet cleaners and buyer’s guide. It will point you in the right direction. Any of our picks will give your carpet the facelift you’ve been desiring.