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What is the Best Steam Cleaner for Carpets 

 April 4, 2021

By  Jeanette Giselle

Wondering what is the best steam cleaner for carpets? Having freshly cleaned carpets can sometimes be such a headache!

But don’t worry we did all the dirty work for you and compiled a list for the best cleaners you can get.

In an effort to be transparent, this blog uses affiliates links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn commission on qualifying purchases. So heads up, there may be some in this post!


Do steam cleaners work on carpet?

Traditional steamers are great tools to freshen up carpets but are not really meant for cleaning your carpet. They are a good pretreatment or additional boost to your regular carpet cleaning machine. While you can technically steam your carpets they are best used for spot treating, freshening up or preparing them for a deep carpet clean.

What is the best way to steam clean carpets?

Before starting its always important to clear the area. If possible move things that are in the way and always vacuum before cleaning your carpet.

If you are using a traditional steam mop a carpet glider must be attached. Or in some cases there are special attachment that are meant for carpets and upholstery.

Once your steamer is ready to use, pass through slowly making sure to get to each spot evenly.

Steaming loosens up dirt and lifts stains so its important to return afterwards with a carpet cleaning machine or even your vacuum.

Another option is to wipe with a rag any obvious stains that the steam mop helped remove but stayed behind. 

Below are several tools and options to help keep your carpets fresh and clean.

IN A RUSH? If you just want to know What is the Best Steam Cleaner for Carpets, then my choice is the Bissell ProHeat Revolution Max. Check out the product page here or the full review below.

What is the Best Carpet Steam Cleaner to Buy?

  1. Best Small Carpet Steam Cleaner: Bissell PowerFresh
  2. Best Commercial Carpet Steam Cleaner: Rug Doctor Mighty Pro
  3. Best Carpet Cleaner for Home Use: Bissell ProHeat Revolution
  4. Best Heavy Duty Canister: McCulloch Deluxe Canister Steamer 
  5. Best Professional Home Carpet Cleaner: Bissell Big Green 
  6. Best Carpet Steam Cleaner Under $100: Bissell Turbo Clean Powerbrush Pet 
  7. Best Carpet Steam Cleaner Under $200: Hoover Power Scrub Deluxe 
  8. Best for Carpets with Pets: Hoover Powerdash Pet Compact

Compare them all here or keep reading for individual reviews.

Best Small Carpet Steam Cleaner: Bissell PowerFresh Pet

The highest-rated steam mop on Amazon, the Bissell PowerFresh is one of the best cleaners you can spend your money on. It’s a small and convenient tool to clean your carpets.

With traditional steam mops, you will have to use a carpet glider — gliders help keep the pad off of the carpet so that they are only receiving the steam.

However, with the new Bissell model(pet), you don’t have to spend extra money on carpet gliders.

Depending on how dirty your carpet is, you can choose from three heat settings – high, medium, and low. Whichever one you go for, you can rest assured that your cleaning will be done right.

This model is packed with fragrance discs to freshen up your carpets and give them a pleasant fragrance. It also features a long power cord that ensures you can get through cleaning the entire area without having to change power outlets.

Highlighted Features
  • Sanitize floors with the BISSELL PowerFresh Steam Mop, which eliminates 99.9% of germs and bacteria when used as directed
  • Shine floors while you clean sticky dried-on spots 2X faster than the leading steam mop with the built-in Easy Scrubber or scrubby microfiber mop pad
  • Remove tough spots with the built-in flip-down Easy Scrubber. Power Rating : 1500 watts
  • Customize your clean with the SmartSet digital variable steam control
  • Neutralize odors with Odor Eliminating Fragrance Discs included
  • The product takes about 30 seconds to generate steam. Contents include Steam Mop and Mop Pads

Best Commercial Carpet Steam Cleaner: Rug Doctor Mighty Pro

For a deep clean, Rug Doctor Carpet Cleaner is a great choice for cleaning your carpets. It is a one-pass cleaning system that sprays, scrubs, and extracts simultaneously. 

It uses jets that inject solution into the carpet while its vibrating brush cleans off every dirt. As you pull back, the machine begins to suction away all the dirt, grime, stains, and odor.

This machine is designed to restore and maintain carpeted floors, and it does just that.

The Rug Doctor Carpet Cleaner features twice the capacity of most machines — large two tanks holding over 2.6 gallons each. This recovery tank gives way to more cleaning time as you don’t have to keep filling and emptying.

As well as this cleaner is ideal for home use, it is great for commercial use. You don’t have to call in a professional to clean it for you. Just purchase it and do it yourself more often.

This way, you’ll get to save some money.

And no, you don’t have to worry about stress. This model is easy to use. Its 22-ft power cord makes it easy to move around to clean areas that are rather far from the power outlet.

To crown things, it has a component for connecting an upholstery tool to also use on furniture.

It is important to note, however, that the tool is sold separately. 

Highlighted Features
  • This one-pass cleaning system sprays, scrubs, and extracts embedded pet messes, dirt, grime, filth, and odors with commercial grade results.
  • Spray: The X3 carpet cleaner uses powerful jets that inject carpet cleaner solution deep into carpet to shampoo and begin releasing dirt, grime, stains, odors and more.
  • Scrub: Triple Action Vibrating Brush scrubs all sides of each carpet fiber releasing dirt & odors that other steam cleaner machines can miss while targeting pet hair, pet urine, and mud tracked in from outside.
  • Extract: Enhanced carpet extractor vacuum motor with pro-grade suction power removes pet stains & odors, gets the floor cleaner, and aids in faster drying times, making these ideal steam cleaners for home and commercial use.
  • CRI Gold Rated – awarded gold rating by the Carpet & Rug Institute for soil removal, water removal and gentleness on carpet. 2 year consumer warranty; Weighs 39lbs

Best Carpet Cleaner for Home Use: Bissell ProHeat Revolution

Due to its small size, Bissell ProHeat Revolution is great for use around the home. Not deterred by its size, it embodies a powerful carpet cleaning system with two modes max and express.

The full-size carpet cleaner has rotating dual dirt lifter power brushes that go deep to remove dirt, stains, and odors. It also comes with an on-shot pretreater to add extra solution exactly where needed.

Homes are not exactly a freeway for cleaning.

They tend to be clogged with furniture and accent pieces, making it difficult to move around. The last thing any homeowner wants is to have to deal with moving a bulky machine in the name of cleaning.

Bissell ProHeat Revolution makes sure you don’t have to do that as its lightweight, and low profile is easy to use around furniture.

The cleaning machine is fast and easy to use. And to broaden the scope of your cleaning, it also includes bonus tools for cleaning upholstery.

Highlighted Features
  • Every Purchase Saves Pets. BISSELL proudly supports BISSELL Pet Foundation and its mission to help save homeless pets.
  • Engineered to be our best and most powerful carpet cleaning system for the toughest pet stains and odors even removes skunk odor
  • MAX Clean Mode. Packing in 12 rows of rotating Dual DirtLifter PowerBrushes, it delivers professional grade cleaning to remove deep down embedded stains, dirt and odors.
  • Express Clean Mode. Delivers dry carpets in about 30 minutes.
  • Attack the Toughest Stains. Activate the CleanShot pretreater to deliver a concentrated stream of cleaning solution right where you need it.
  • Lightweight Design (less than 18 pounds) and Low-Profile Foot. Makes it easy to use and maneuver around furniture.
  • Includes Bonus 3" Tough Stain Tool and 2-in-1 Pet Upholstery Tool. Removes pet hair, stains and odors from upholstery.
  • EZ Clean Brush Roll Cover. Makes cleaning the machine after a deep clean quick and easy.
  • Stain and odor removal system includes PET PRO OXY Urine Eliminator formula, 2-in-1 upholstery tool, CleanShot Pretreater, EZ Clean Brush Roll Cover.
  • Express Clean Mode (reference instruction in user guide). Tested on new carpet with protectant. Results may vary

Best Heavy Duty Canister: McCulloch Deluxe Canister Steamer

If you’re looking for a heavy-duty cleaning machine to take on outdoor cleaning tasks, you should consider buying McCulloch Deluxe Canister Steamer. It is powerful, effective, and versatile.

Its variable steam control technology allows you to control the right amount of steam to erase tough grease and grime.

With a water tank of 48 ounces, you can have up to 90 minutes of continuous steam without having to make unending trips to refill.

And more convenience is guaranteed due to its 10-feet insulated steam hose that directs steam flow to the steam nozzle.

It’s no hoax when I say that you can naturally and safely clean your home with the McCulloch Deluxe Canister. It literally blasts away all forms of dirt, grease, and grime, killing germs and bacteria in the process.

Another great thing about this cleaner is that it’s not only suitable for carpets. It is perfect for outdoor furniture, grills, auto, lawn equipment, appliances, fixtures, and more.

It is indeed versatile!

Highlighted Features
  • CHEMICAL-FREE CLEANING — Naturally deep clean and sanitize without the use of harsh chemicals using hot, pressured steam to eliminate grease, grime, and stains from a wide range of surfaces including ceramic tile, grout, granite, sealed wood flooring, laminate, appliances, grills, autos, and more.
  • SANITIZE WITH STEAM— With proper application, steam sanitizes by removing germs and bacteria.
  • 23 VERSATILE ACCESSORIES — Equipped for steam cleaning jobs in and around your home including a floor mop, mop pads, nylon brushes, brass brush, angled nozzle, scrub pad, scraper, squeegee, and more. Conveniently store accessories on-board or in included storage bag.
  • LARGE CAPACITY TANK — The 64-ounce water tank heats up in under 12 minutes and provides up to 120 minutes of steam. Blast away dirt and grime with on-demand variable steam control, optional steam lock for continuous steam, and 4 bar (58 PSI) pressure.
  • GREATER REACH — Extra-long 18-foot power cord and 10-foot steam hose provide added maneuverability and reach for those hard to get to places.
  • SUPERIOR SUPPORT — When you choose a McCulloch product, you’re investing in superior performance and design that will deliver total satisfaction. If not, we’ll replace it, for 2 years. Supported by a customer service team based in Andover, KS.
  • Built to meet U.S. voltage requirements. Certified, safety-tested, and warrantied for use only in the U.S.

Best Professional Home Carpet Cleaner: Bissell Big Green

Seeking professional-grade cleaning results in your home? Go for Bissell Big Green. Its powerful motors and large brush roll are designed to get rid of every surface dirt, no matter how deep they might be.

The 6-inch stain tool goes tough on stains on carpet, floors, stairs, and upholstery. And for the areas that are hard to reach, the 9-inch long hose helps to get.

Coupled with its 25-inch power cord, you can easily maneuver your way through a thorough cleaning job.

This model is made with high-quality materials to aid your cleaning. It comes with two large tanks that keep clean and dirty water separate to reduce your trips to change the water.

It also has an adjustable handle to make using it comfortable regardless of your height.

Bissell Big Green is a master in the field of cleaning. Its outstanding cleaning results stand firm to testify to that.

Highlighted Features
  • Every Purchase Saves Pets. BISSELL proudly supports BISSELL Pet Foundation and its mission to help save homeless pets
  • Outcleans the Leading Rental.* Get professional grade cleaning results
  • XL DirtLifter PowerBrush. Eight rows of bristles penetrate carpet fibers to loosen and lift embedded dirt
  • 9' Long Reach Hose & 6 inches Tough Stain Tool. Easily clean stairs, upholstery and hard-to-reach areas
  • Use with BISSELL PRO MAX Clean + Protect Formula. Remove tough, ground-in dirt and stains
  • Two Large Tanks. Keep clean and dirty water separate while cleaning
  • Adjustable Handle. Select the height that is comfortable for you
  • 25' Power Cord. Provides extra reach and easy maneuverability
  • *Cleaning results based on ASTM F2828 using BISSELL Oxy Multi Purpose formula against the Rug Doctor Mighty Pro X3 carpet cleaner using their top selling formula

Best Carpet Steam Cleaner Under $100: Bissell Turbo Clean Powerbrush Pet

Cheap doesn’t always mean substandard. There are a good number of good reasons to go for Bissell Turbo Clean Carpet Cleaner.

Despite the fact that it’s inexpensive compared to most top-rated cleaners on the market, you can rely on its cleaning power. 

Its four-row dirt lifter power brush and powerful suction work together to remove embedded dirt. Whether your pet causes the dirt or not, whether it is deep or not, Bissell Turbo Clean will get it out.

This model comes with its custom formula that works effectively to remove tough stains and odors. And what’s more? After cleaning, you don’t have to do a massive cleaning up.

You simply have to rinse off the detachable nozzle.

With this particular steam cleaner, you don’t have to worry about it taking space. It has a collapsible handle. Prop it, and your steam cleaning machine can fit into a smaller space.

Lightweight, portable, and easy to use, this carpet steam cleaner is almost too good to be true. So much value for less than $100!

Highlighted Features
  • Every Bissell purchase helps save pets. Bissell proudly supports Bissell pet foundation and its mission to help save homeless pets.
  • Clean powerfully. Remove tough stains and pet messes.
  • Remove embedded dirt. Four-row dirt lifter power brush and powerful suction.
  • Quickly cleans spots and stains. Powerful Bissell Oxy formula cleans stains like cola and urine.
  • Lightweight & easy-to-use. Weighs just 12 pounds and has a retractable handle for easy storage.

Best Carpet Steam Cleaner Under $200: Hoover Power Scrub Deluxe

If your budget is anything below $200, I suggest you buy the Hoover Power Scrub Deluxe. This carpet cleaner is designed with a spin scrub brush system that spins powerfully to rid your carpets of stubborn dirt.

It features a Dual V nozzle that provides equal suction and evenly cleans surfaces.

While the results of cleaning bring a great deal of satisfaction to everyone, everybody hates that they have to be restricted from rooms for hours, waiting for the floor to dry. 

The Hoover Steam cleaner saves you from that headache with its fast dry time technology.

 It has an extra heat force that applies hot air directly to the floor, making your carpets dry faster after cleaning.

This way, you don’t have to wait forever to freely move around after cleaning.

This cleaner is designed to target tough stains. It comes with extra tools an upholstery tool and a crevice tool.

It also includes a bottle of carpet cleaning solution and an 8-inch hose to reach hard-to-reach areas further.

All these features yet it is lightweight. Nineteen pounds you sure won’t have a problem moving that weight around!

Highlighted Features
  • SPINSCRUB BRUSH SYSTEM: Safely deep clean carpets of the toughest dirt with powerful 360 degree brushes
  • DUAL V NOZZLE: Evenly cleans surfaces with equal suction
  • HEAT FORCE: For faster drying
  • LIGHTWEIGHT: Less than 19 pounds, pick up and go wherever the mess is with ease
  • WHAT’S INCLUDED: 8’ hose to deep clean hard-to-reach areas, s0tair tool, upholstery tool, crevice tool, and sample bottle of carpet cleaning solution

Best for Carpets with Pets: Hoover Powerdash Pet Compact

When it comes to pets, Hoover PowerDash Pet Compact scores very high points the highest, I dare say. It might be small in size, but its cleaning power is top-notch.

You can effectively combat pet messes and everyday cleaning.

The Hoover cleaner includes a cleaning solution to fight stains and an anti-microbial brush roll to help eradicate odors. Coupled with the Powerspin Pet Brush Roll, the result is a sparkly clean and protected carpet.

This model is perfect for high-traffic areas and small spaces.

With it, you won’t have to sweat over making sure your pets don’t tramp over the floor while it’s waiting to dry. Thanks to its heat force technology, your carpets can be dried in little time,

If you are a pet owner looking out for the best carpet cleaner and you should be Hoover PowerDash Pet Compact is a great pick. Your floor will thank you for it.

Highlighted Features
  • 2X MORE CLEANING POWER than the competitive lightweight carpet cleaner
  • POWERSPIN PET BRUSH ROLL: Delivers powerful carpet cleaning with protection
  • HEATFORCE POWER: Delivering an even faster drying for any space
  • LIGHTWEIGHT & COMPACT: Easy-to-use design for efficient cleaning and storage
  • POWERFUL CLEANING: Good for high traffic areas and small spaces
  • CLEANING SOLUTION INCLUDED: Comes with a Hoover Trial Size Solution to help enhance your cleaning performance

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it better to shampoo or steam clean carpets?

If you are wondering between shampooing or steaming your carpet, the answer is both. Shampooing and steaming generally provide different types of clean. Shampooing helps to deeply clean your carpets fibers. While steaming is great cleaning for a mild refreshing at a more surface level.

What is the best carpet cleaner solution?

The Bissell Deep Clean Pro Shampoo is hands down one of the best solutions you can get. Not only does it work great with the already amazing Bissell carpet cleaners but its Amazon’s #1 Choice for Commercial Carpet Cleaners and Household Carpet Detergents.

You can see the Amazon Best Seller Ranks for Household Detergents here which is updated hourly.

  • Every BISSELL purchase helps save pets. BISSELL proudly supports BISSELL Pet Foundation and its mission to help save homeless pets.
  • Our most powerful formula for tough, ground-in dirt and stains.
  • Removes tough odors.
  • Safe on carpet, area rugs and upholstery.
  • Great for heavily soiled areas, stubborn stains and underlying odors.
  • Formula made for upright carpet cleaners.
  • Formula contains no heavy metals, phosphates or dyes. Biodegradable detergent
  • Safe to use around kids and pets when used as directed.

Which is the best steam cleaner for carpets?

When looking for the best carpet cleaner, its always important to review your needs. But when in doubt the Bissell Revolution Max is a great overall choice.

It is powerful and will provide the best carpet clean without wheeling around a huge machine.

It’s the perfect choice for at home use but as you’ve seen in this post, you have several options.

  • Every Purchase Saves Pets. BISSELL proudly supports BISSELL Pet Foundation and its mission to help save homeless pets.
  • Engineered to be our best and most powerful carpet cleaning system for the toughest pet stains and odors even removes skunk odor
  • MAX Clean Mode. Packing in 12 rows of rotating Dual DirtLifter PowerBrushes, it delivers professional grade cleaning to remove deep down embedded stains, dirt and odors.
  • Express Clean Mode. Delivers dry carpets in about 30 minutes.
  • Attack the Toughest Stains. Activate the CleanShot pretreater to deliver a concentrated stream of cleaning solution right where you need it.
  • Lightweight Design (less than 18 pounds) and Low-Profile Foot. Makes it easy to use and maneuver around furniture.
  • Includes Bonus 3" Tough Stain Tool and 2-in-1 Pet Upholstery Tool. Removes pet hair, stains and odors from upholstery.
  • EZ Clean Brush Roll Cover. Makes cleaning the machine after a deep clean quick and easy.
  • Stain and odor removal system includes PET PRO OXY Urine Eliminator formula, 2-in-1 upholstery tool, CleanShot Pretreater, EZ Clean Brush Roll Cover.
  • Express Clean Mode (reference instruction in user guide). Tested on new carpet with protectant. Results may vary

Jeanette Giselle


Jeanette is a mom of three kids and full time entrepreneur. She is a certified Professional House Cleaner by the AHCA. It is her passion to help overwhelmed mothers simplify their home duties so that they can spend their time doing the things they love. 

Jeanette Giselle

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