How We Tested
We recommend these products based on an intensive research process that's designed to cut through the noise and find the top products in this space. Guided by experts, we spend hours looking into the factors that matter, to bring you these selections.Click here for testing insights >
Steam cleaning your carpets is the luxury you deserve. Steam cleaning removes stains, dirt, and even mites and bacteria all while using little to no pollutants. Water vapors are heated and forced into the fibers of your carpet to remove all residue. Then dry steam collects the loosened dirt and debris to create a soft, luxuriously clean carpet. Because steam cleaning is more environmentally friendly, it has grown in popularity in recent years. No harsh soaps or cleaning liquids are used – just hot water and your carpets are plush and clean.
Searching for the perfect carpet steam cleaner for your home may not be so easy. There are different questions you should consider, such as, what features do you look for? What size of room or rooms do you need to clean? How long is the cord? How heavy is the machine itself?
Top 10: Carpet Steam Cleaners Reviewed
1. Bissell ProHeat 2X Revolution Pet Pro 1986
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This cleaner was geared toward pet owners. Pets add so much to our lives, but they also make life messy. They can track in more dirt and debris through their fur coats than we can see, so steam cleaners are the way to go when you have a household with pets.
The Bissell ProHeat 2X Revolution Max Clean Pet Pro is a less than 20-pound cleaner that boasts Heatwave Technology. A key feature is the CleanShot pre-treater to remove tough stains and spots on your carpets and upholstery. The 2-in-1 tool allows you to choose between dry mode and wet mode to combat the toughest stains and dirt. The dry dirt is kept in it’s own dry tank for effortless disposal.
Even the roller brushes can be easily cleaned by removing the brush roll cover. This cleaner also comes with samples – 8oz of Bissell’s Pet Urine Eliminator formula and 8 oz of Bissell’s Pet Antibacterial Formula for sample use on your carpet. These are the strongest and most effective formulas Bissel has in its arsenal for removing pet stains and odors. Equipped with a 25- cord, the steam dries in 30 minutes so you have time for family fun.
- Easy to clean
- Includes upholstery tool against pet hair
- 12 rows of rotating brushes
- Dries carpets in 30 minutes
- 1-gallon tank capacity
- Roller brush continues to spin as you use the hand tools.
2. McCulloch MC1385 Deluxe Canister Steam System
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McCulloch has over 50 years of experience in producing the very best outdoor power equipment. They have taken those years of experience to bring you the McCulloch MC1385 Deluxe Canister Steam System. This cleaner has multiple uses around your home, including use on outdoor furniture and grills, the wheels and engine of your car, and can even be used to clean boats, RVs, and motorcycles. It weighs in at 13 pounds, so it is easy to carry and maneuver with it.
This model offers on-demand steam control and plenty of pressure to discharge all dirt and grime. The cleaner takes 12 minutes to heat up to over 200 degrees Fahrenheit and provides over 120 minutes of continuous steam for a super-powered clean. An extra-large tank of 64 oz means you will be refilling the machine less and be able to get more cleaning done in less time. Use it on tile and grout in the bathroom, appliances and fixtures, and on lawn equipment and other outdoor tools. Backed by a 2-year warranty and supported from Andover, Kansas, this cleaner will help you get the job done. The 18- cord has on-board storage for ease of storage.
- Variable steam control
- Extra large water tank
- High pressure
- Includes 23 versatile accessories
- Takes half an hour to cool
- Handle gets warm
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The Dupray ONE Steam Cleaner offers a sleek design and useful versatility. It heats your tap water to over boiling, resulting in less moisture. The steam contains about 5% moisture and super-cleaning power.
This lightweight, 10-pound steam cleaner boasts 50 minutes of cleaning time before needing a refill. It includes a set of 16 pieces of quality accessories to help you clean multiple surface areas. It has adjustable pressure and can steam up to 303 degrees Fahrenheit. It is made in Europe and has a 3-year warranty and lifetime warranty on the stainless-steel boiler.
The cleaner has an 8-minute heat-up time and a high capacity tank for fewer refills while you clean. It has a 16-, 5-inch cord with an integrated cord wrap for portable use. The 16 versatile attachments include a triangular tool, rectangular floor tool, connector, window tool, two extension tubes, a lance and connector, microfiber cloth, triangular tool microfiber bonnet, rectangular tool microfiber bonnet, two nylon brushes, brass brush, plunger tool, and funnel.
This model offers the ultimate sanitation, by disinfecting surfaces with regular tap water. The superheated steam will kill 99% of bacteria and germs in your home. Several reviews note the ease of use and efficient cleaning obtainable with the multiple tools provided.
- 50-minute cleaning time
- Kills 99% of bacteria
- Ideal for all types of surfaces
- Pricey option, but you get high quality in return
4. Bissell ProHeat 2X Lift Off Pet Carpet Cleaner
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This steam cleaner offers an upright carpet cleaning system and a removable spot cleaner in the same machine. It has two rows of PowerBrushes to clean the deepest mess, as the HeatWave technology provides a constant flow of heat for cleaning the toughest spots, making it a great home carpet cleaner that can handle various carpet length.
The Bissell ProHeat 2X is a 24-pound upright deep cleaner for full rooms and hallways, and it contains a portable and detachable cleaner for stairs, furniture, and even car interiors. The portable cleaner packs the same suction power as the full-sized machine and is perfect for those forgotten coffee stains in your car.
The Bissell EasyFill system allows you to easily refill the machine without the danger of spilling the cleaning solution while you pour. The two Powerburshes easily bring up dirt and grime while being gentle on your carpet. A sample of Bissell Professional Formula comes with the machine so that you can try it for yourself. It has a 3-year limited warranty so if it breaks down you are covered.
A 22- power cord and is powered by 6.7 amps to provide a deep clean. The cleaner has a 6- portable cleaning hose that you can use on upholstery and other hard-to-reach spots and angles. The three-inch tough stain tool will help rid your house of stains by scrubbing the spot in need.
- 2-in-1 functionality
- Dual power brushes
- Wide cleaning width/path
- Hard to clean the machine itself
5. Hoover Power Scrub Deluxe Carpet Cleaner Machine
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Extend the life of your carpet and fabric surfaces in your home with the Hoover Power Scrub Deluxe Carpet Cleaner Machine. This 18.1 pound machine offers brushes that spin 360 degrees wit the patented SpinBrush Technology to clean your carpet at every angle.
Surfaces are cleaned evenly and quickly with the DualV Nozzle. Dual tanks keep the dirty and clean water separate so that you can easily refill the clean water while you empty and rinse the dirty tank. Heated air allows your carpet to dry faster and have less residue.
The machine is even smart enough to automatically mix your cleaning solution with the water so that you have the perfect mixture every time. A 20- power cord makes it easier to move about your house with less unplugging required. It comes with a 2-year limited warranty.
An 8- hose allows you to reach tough areas while you use one of the many tools included: a stair tool. Upholstery tool, and crevice tool. Each of these gives you the versatility you need to clean any surface in your home.
- Includes a mesh tool bag
- Easy to assemble
- Repairs must be done at a service center
6. Bissell Big Green Professional Carpet Cleaner Machine
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If you are looking for a steam cleaner with an extra-large dirt-lifter with powerful suction, take a look at the Bissell Big Green Professional Carpet Cleaner Machine. This machine keeps the clean and dirty water separate with two tanks.
It is made with high-quality materials and has been designed to be tip-proof while you’re cleaning. You even get a sample of the Bissell 2X Professional Deep Cleaning Formula that contains Scotchguard to prevent future messes and stains in your carpet and upholstery.
This cleaner comes with a 5-year limited warranty – so clean with the comfort of knowing the machine will be covered if something happens. The extra-large DirtLifter PowerBrush will work though on left-in stains and make your carpets look like new.
The unit includes a 9- hose, a tough stain tool, and weighs in at pounds. The tough stain tool allows you to specifically target trouble spots. One of the unique features of this steam cleaner is that it cleans both forward and backward, allowing for much quicker cleaning and drying times.
- Two separate tanks for clean and dirty water
- Extra large scrubber
- Cleans forward and backwards
- Heavy machine
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This cleaner was designed to ensure that even the toughest stains are removable. The PureClean XL Rolling Steam Cleaner is an 18-piece, 1500-Watt machine. It is one of the most powerful models on the market, delivering an efficient clean. It is durable and reliable, and heats up in under 8 minutes with the ability to clean for 45 continuous minutes of steam power.
It weighs in at 16 pounds and has a 16- power cord. Portability and ease of use is one of the key benefits of purchasing this steam cleaner. Its compact storage design makes it easy to store in tight spaces and have it ready when you need it. There is no cleaning solution, the system only uses water to remove dirt and grime. It cleans over ten types of surfaces, including car interiors, laminate flooring, curtains, grills, toys, and furniture. Pure Enrichment offers a 5-year warranty for this model – better than most in the industry.
- On easy-roll wheels for mobility
- Great price
- Cannot be shipped internationally
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This model is a general purpose, high-pressure steam cleaner for most floors, counters, appliances, windows, and cars. It weighs under 10 pounds and comes with a 2-year warranty. It uses hot, pressured steam instead of harsh chemicals to get rid of grime, grease, and dirt. Because it is chemical-free, it is safe to use on ceramic tile, grout, granite, sealed wood, and laminate flooring, among other surfaces.
The 48oz large capacity tank heats up in 8 minutes and provides up to 45 minutes of continuous steam. This steam cleaner also includes a lockable steam trigger for ease of use. It comes with 18 accessories to cover all steam cleaning areas in your home. Accessories include a floor mop, mop , nylon brushes, brass brush, scrub , squeegee, and others. These accessories are much better with the 15.7- power cord and 9- hose to help you reach everywhere. McCulloch has ten years of experience building steam cleaners and they have focused on a more heavy-duty approach.
- Powerful jet nozzle
- Steam lock switch
- Large water tank
- Less pressure than the newer model on #2 of this list
9. Hoover Smartwash FH52000 Carpet Cleaner
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One of the first things anyone notices about your home is the carpet. Therefore, keeping your carpets clean is a necessary evil. Luckily, carpet steam cleaners provide help with this task with little effort. If you are looking for a simple upright cleaner, this is a good option for you. Sure, you can hire professional help, but if you invest in a good product, you can ensure you have the right tools for a deep clean without ruining your carpets for years to come.
Take home Hoover’s best full-size upright carpet cleaner. It works very simply by pushing forward to clean and pulling backward to dry. It makes for a deep clean that’s as easy as running your vacuum. The Hoover Smartwash FH52000 Carpet Cleaner boasts an automatic clean. There are no extra buttons to press or accessories to mess with – just a simple, deep clean.
The design includes a motion sensor that takes away any guesswork when cleaning your floors. The AutoDry feature extracts water using HeatForce technology while FlexForce PowerBrushes remove implanted dirt and debris from your carpets. The brushes are cleaning with a 1-step Removable Nozzle, and the Dual Tank system makes cleaning the machine a breeze.
There are separate tanks for the cleaning solution and for the freshwater. The machine comes with a 2-in-1 antimicrobial pet tool and a sample bottle of cleaning solution to start you off on the right .
- Accessory bag included
- Triggerless design
- Cannot adjust pressure
10. Rug Doctor Mighty Pro X3 Pet Pack Carpet Cleaner
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You should deep clean your carpets at least annually to rid your home of mold, mildew, and other harmful bacteria. There are instances when you should deep clean more often – for example, if any members of your household smoke indoors, or if you have children, steam cleaning is recommended at least every six months.
With this model, you can incorporate steam cleaning into your annual spring cleaning routine. Purchasing your own carpet steam cleaner will save you money in the long run, and no germs from others’ homes can make their way into your home. A good steam cleaning option is the Rug Doctor Mighty Pro X3 Pet Pack Carpet Cleaner.
Portability is key for this 50-pound machine. Its rotating brushes pull up deeply embedded dirt and debris, and even deters your pets from marking the spot again by removing all odors with a pro-enzymatic cleaning formula. The tank is a 3.9-gallon tank, which is bigger than most other brands, so you don’t have to waste time emptying and refilling as you clean.
The soft fabric versatility helps you deep clean surfaces such as chairs, pet beds, couches, and mattresses, to name a few. All of Rug Doctor’s steam cleaners are tested and inspected for high quality and are backed by a 5-year limited warranty. The Rug Doctor is the most industrial unit on this list making it great for carpet cleaning professionals and small business owners alike!
- Works on many different soft surfaces
- Large 3-gallon tank
- Must be serviced by a Rug Doctor service representative
Best Carpet Steam Cleaners Verdict
BISSELLProHeat 2X Revolution
Steam cleaning your carpets help the people in your home live healthier, more vibrant lives. Steam cleaners have become the go-to cleaning aid for sufferers of asthma, allergies, and other sensitivities. In the long run, purchasing a steam cleaner is the more cost-effective choice. Of the ten machines listed above, we recommend the BISSELL ProHeat 2X Revolution. It offers heavy-duty cleaning in a lightweight machine. It is safe for most carpets and area rugs.
The Express Clean setting allows you to clean without soaking the carpet with solution, which is perfect for quick clean up of spills or stains. The 2-in-1 Pet Upholstery Tool helps you lift stains and spots from a specific area – and can help eliminate any odor that gets absorbed into the carpet fibers. Keeping the machine itself clean is also simple – just remove the EZ Clean Brush Roll Cover. This allows for easy access to the brushes and makes for effortless cleaning of the machine.
Indulge in luxurious clean. Order your new steam cleaner today and enjoy years of clean carpets and surfaces in your home.
Carpet Steam Cleaners: A Buying Guide
In researching the above mentioned models that made our best-rated list we spent hours researching some of the key functionalities all good carpet steam cleaners should have and have summarized the points below for you to take into consideration when doing your own comparison shopping:
Things to Consider Prior to Purchase
There are several factors that will influence which steam cleaner you buy. How much surface area do you need to clean? Are you looking at home/residential use or do you need more robust commercial/industrial steam machines? What kind of storage options and space do you have? Are you willing to read the product manuals before purchasing?
Steam cleaners come in many different sizes and weights. You need to know your space and decide which machine will work best for you. Will you be lugging the machine up and down stairs? Maybe you would want a lightweight cleaner. If you have a large area to cover, perhaps a larger machine with a bigger tank is the option that will work for you, due to less time spent refilling the machine.
Steam Cleaners can take up a lot of storage space in your home. Some machines do not provide a place to store the power cord. How many accessories come with your machine, and does it come with a storage bag so that you do not lose any accessories? Measure your storage space and measure the steam cleaner before you purchase. This will save you many frustrations.
Even if the machine you choose only uses hot water, it is still hot enough to cause damage, so make sure you familiarize yourself with the instruction manual. Perusing the manual prior to purchase will help you determine which machine will work best for your household. Some companies even provide online video demonstrations of their steam cleaners. These are definitely helpful in making your decision as you can watch how it is used and might be able to see how well it cleans.
What to Look for in a Steam Cleaning Machine
One of the most important features of a steam cleaner is the boiler mechanism. You want rust-proof, resilient boiler materials. The more inexpensive machines contain plastic boilers. These will not last very long with the high temperatures and pressure of the steam. The plastic materials also do not heat up as fast as stainless steel boiler parts. Ideally, the boilers should be made from stainless steel or aluminum for the best quality.
Unless you want to wait 15 to 30 minutes between refilling your machine, look for one that has a continuous-fill boiler. That way, you will be able to refill the tank as often as necessary, without the downtime of waiting for the boilers to cool before refills.
Safety should always be a priority, so look for a steam cleaner with a pressure gage. This gage will let you know when it’s safe to remove the boiler cap to refill, and when it’s ready to get back to cleaning. A safety cap will allow you to let out steam before removing the cap so that you do not burn your skin as you remove the cap.
Which type of steam cleaner or steam mop you choose will dictate your price range. Smaller machines like hand-held cleaners and mops are much more reasonable than the larger and commercial machines. However, the larger machines come with more functionality and longer life as well.
To make cleaning easier and faster, look for steam cleaners with a locking mechanism for the steam. Holding the steam button down for extended periods of time is not ideal, especially if you are cleaning a large surface area. A unit that keeps constant pressure for the steam will clean more efficiently than those that have inconsistent pressure. Variable control setting helps you distribute the cleaning power needed to each specific area. Machines with this functionality are much easier to maneuver.
Long hoses and cleaners that come with extendable accessories are the most helpful because you will be able to use them for a number of different items. A long power cord allows you to move freely as you clean, saving you both the time and the hassle of unplugging and re-plugging into the outlets around your home.
Depending on your household, having a wide array of tools and accessories could go a long way towards making cleaning fun and easy. Most cleaners come with accessories to reach those awkward angles and grimy spots.
There are many different types of steam cleaners. Handhelds are small, portable, and affordable. Steam mops, primarily designed for floors, are easy to handle and lightweight. Cylinder (or canister) steam cleaners offer a more efficient deep clean via their larger tanks and versatility. Vapor Steamers provide “dry” steam with high heat to force the carpet to dry after a solution or water is introduced into the fibers.
Does noise bother you? Most cleaners are quieter than vacuum cleaners or portable carpet cleaners, but they all produce noise. Some are louder than others. If this is a concern for you or your family members, look for machines that advertise a softer sound. Read the online reviews so that you know how others have felt about the noise level of the particular machine.
Avoiding Buyer’s Remorse
The biggest thing to remember when purchasing a cleaner is to evaluate your expectations. Sometimes, unrealistic expectations cause frustrations for new owners. A small, inexpensive machine will not clean like a sturdy, professional-grade model. A commercial-grade steamer, though powerful, sometimes cannot rid your carpets of all stains and spots, especially if they have been neglected for many years.
Ultimately the best steam carpet cleaner for you will depend on your unique circumstance and your goals. The volume will dictate the size, the complexity of surfaces will dictate the attachments/shape you need, the mobility required to clean will dictate the portability, and most importantly, your budget will often be the deciding factor when steam cleaner shopping.
Other Products We Considered
The Steam Cleaner Master editorial team researches hundreds of products based on consumer reviews, brand quality, and value. We then choose a shorter list for in-depth research and testing before finalizing our top picks. These are the products we considered that ultimately didn't make our top 5.