Top 5 Best Portable Carpet Cleaner (2023 Reviews)

Portable carpet cleaner bissell

Best Portable Carpet Cleaner – Top 5 Best Handheld Carpet Cleaner you can buy in 2023

People with children or with a pet knows the importance of having a portable carpet cleaner close at hand to deal with any potential messes. Since most of our home area is filled with carpet, no matter what type of pet you have, you are going to have a big mess to clean up at some point in time. And very often, you are going to need a carpet steamer that go away and beyond the ordinary cleaners.

Why you need to have a portable carpet cleaner?

Portable Handheld Cleaners designed to reaching far end areas where the cord vacuums fail to tackle such dreary jobs. Portable carpet cleaners are not only powerful but is convenient enough to be carried where it is needed.

Choosing a right portable vacuum that fits your most essential requirement is a key decision in buying a vacuum. If you are looking a vacuum for quick clean ups, choose the portable carpet cleaner that have a sleek design and handy.

We have come up with a list of our top favorite best portable carpet cleaners which you can buy in 2022.

Reviewed Top 5 best portable carpet cleaners reviews and handheld carpet cleaners comparisons briefly here,

Table of Contents show

Portable Carpet Cleaner Comparison Chart

Comparing the different handheld carpet cleaners in this article will help you choose the appropriate portable vacuum suitable for your carpet cleaning requirements. The comparison chart helps you glance at the differences quickly so that you can take an informed decision.






Bissell SpotBot Pet handsfree Spot and Stain Cleaner with Deep Reach Technology 33N8



Carpets, Cars and Area Rugs

Stain Cleaner, Pet Handsfree Spot, Low Pile Carpet

14 pounds

Rug Doctor Portable Spot Cleaner Vacuum


Portable Spot Cleaner

Stairs, Car Interiors and Upholstery

Handheld, Removes Tough Stains and Neutralizes Odors


19.8 pounds

Bissell Multi-Purpose Portable Carpet and Upholstery Cleaner Machine, 1400B

Little Green

Multi Surface, from carpets to stair

Lift away messes from carpet and 3″ Tough Stain Too

9.65 pounds

Hoover Power Scrub Deluxe Carpet Washer FH50150

Power Scrub Deluxe

Carpets, Upholstery and Area Rugs

Spin Scrub Brush, Stair tool, Upholstery tool and Crescive tool

19 pounds

Hoover Spotless Portable Carpet & Upholstery Spot Cleaner FH11300PC

Spot Cleaner

Carpets and Upholstery

Expert Pretreat Gel, Spot Cleaner, Expert Clean, Rubber Nub Tool

9 pounds

What is a carpet cleaner?

Carpet cleaner is a process performed to remove stains, dirt and allergens from carpets. Carpet cleaner also called as carpet beater or carpet sweeper. Common methods include hot water extraction, dry-cleaning, and vacuuming

Carpet cleaners also called carper shampooers or carpet surface cleaner, which means they clean the upper portions of the carpet fibers but may not reach dirt and residue that settle to the bottom.

Different Methods of Carpet Cleaning

Wet Cleaning Method

Wet cleaning or hot water extraction cleaning method uses equipment that sprays heated water and detergent on the carpet and simultaneously, the water and detergent is extracted, along with any dislodged and dissolved dirt. Many experts recommend hot water extraction as the most effective carpet cleaning method.

A common process of hot water extraction begins with preconditioning. Alkaline agents such as ammonia solution for synthetic carpets, or acidic solution for woollen carpets, are sprayed into the carpet, then agitated with a grooming brush or an automatic scrubbing machine.

Wet cleaning equipment may be a portable unit that plugs into an electrical outlet, or a truck mount carpet cleaner requiring long hoses from the truck or trailer.

Dry Cleaning Method

Dry cleaning is any cleaning process for clothing and textiles using a chemical solvent other than water. The cleaning fluid that is used is a liquid, and all garments are immersed and cleaned in a liquid solvent. The fact that there is no water is why the process is called dry cleaning. This is most popular carpet cleaning method in commercial cleaning industry.

Bonnet cleaning Method

Bonnet cleaning is an interim-maintenance program typically used in commercial cleaning situations. A special solution is sprayed on freshly vacuumed carpet for this method of cleaning. It is considered a low-moisture cleaning system. This process only cleans the face fibers; it does not get the deep-down cleaning results from processes such as shampooing and wet cleaning

Widely used Home Carpet Cleaning methods

Here are two mostly used carpet cleaning methods in household based on the type of carpet,

Carpet Steamer or Vacuum Method

Vacuum cleaners use air pumps to create partial vacuums to suck up dust and dirt, usually from floors and carpets. Filtering systems or cyclones collect dirt for later disposal but don’t necessarily improve the machines ability to remove dirt from the surface being cleaned. Modern carpet cleaning equipment use rotary vacuum heads and spray jets to deep clean the carpet through hundreds of multi-directional cleaning passes. 

Portable carpet steam cleaners are most popular vacuums used in home carpet cleaning which use a cleaning solution and hot water to deep clean your carpet.

Spot cleaner method

Spot means treating only the part of the garment that has a stain on it. Spot cleaning is often done on intricate clothing, such as a beaded dress. Since the dress has beading on it, spot cleaning can remove the stain without damaging the beadwork.

Carpet spot cleaner is most widely used cleaner in household activities which are typically smaller models. Spot cleaner for carpet use the steam cleaning techniques. Their small size makes them perfect for smaller messes and easier to store it compare to large vacuums.

This article is mainly focus on to provide you the best portable carpet cleaner available in the market today. Both carpet steam cleaner or the spot carpet cleaner can be a portable carpet cleaner, but carpet spot cleaner machines are more common in all brands.

Difference between a carpet cleaner and a vacuum cleaner

Though both carpet cleaner and vacuum cleaner are designed to clean the carpets and multi-surfaces, it has different needs to where use it.

The key difference between spot carpet cleaners and vacuum cleaners is their main purpose. While both are used to clean carpets and rugs, the vacuum cleaner eliminates the loose debris, hair, dust, and dirt using suction.

On the other hand, a spot carpet cleaner utilizes extensive means to thoroughly clean the base of the carpet using water and a cleaning solution. The vacuum cleaner doesn’t need water to clean the surface.

By the way, you make take a look at our best vacuum cleaners collection here which you can buy in 2021.

Here top 5 best portable carpet steam cleaner and carpet cleaner machine reviews and comparisons,

Portable Carpet Cleaner for Pet Stains:

Bissell Spotbot pet 33N8 handsfree portable carpet cleaner is one of the most reliable, lightweight, and best in class portable carpet cleaner available today in the market. Bissell proprietary DeepReach technology applies water and deep cleaning into carpet fibers and gently scrubs to loosen and permanently remove pet stains with help of a push button.

This hands-free portable spot cleaner Bissell does all the scrubbing for you without getting your hands dirty. Equipped with two preset cleaning cycles, this easy-to-use portable carpet cleaner automatically sprays, brushes, and suctions to remove both surface fresh pet stains and deep-rooted stains.

This tailor-made pet handsfree cleaner comes with a tough stain tool and best suited for carpet, furniture, and area rugs surfaces. This spot cleaner Bissell device comes with nearly 400 movements through it’s spiral turn brush ending with a complete removal of any dirt and stains. 

Why we like this portable carpet cleaner?

  • It offers you spotless and hands-free cleaning
  • It comes with automatic cleaning system that does work for you
  • Supports two preset set cleaning process such as quick clean for fresh strains and deep cleaning for set in strains
  • Bissell DeepReach Technology can clean deep into carpet fibers
  • It fights strongly for pet odors and prevents from reoccurring
  • It is easy to carry and conveniently store for quick use.

Our Verdict:

This hands-free automatic portable carpet cleaner makes it easy to keep your carpet clean from pet strains and soils. It comes with powerful suction for quick dry.

Handheld Carpet Cleaner Specifications:

Power Source


Surface Recommendation

Carpets, Cars and Area Rugs

Tank Capacity

30 oz



Portable Spot Cleaner Rug Doctor for Spot Cleaning:

Rug Doctor has created the professional portable spot steam cleaner for carpet cleaning. It is very inexpensive compare to other spot steam cleaners even with powerful features such as strong suction powers. Since Rug Doctor portable carpet spot cleaner uses twice the suction power of other portable carpet cleaners.

This portable spot cleaner for carpet does not have the automatic, hands-free function of the Bissell but comes with wide-set and large wheels which allows you to clean any tough areas and for the same reason it is quite heavier at 20 pounds.

This portable machine can hold up to 64-ounces of cleaning solution and has a motorized brush capable of performing 1,200 movements a minute. This feature, along with its increased suction, enables it to extract stains quickly and effortlessly.

Why we like portable carpet cleaner?

  • It deals with toughest messes with powerful suction
  • Easy to store and use with a fordable design
  • Inexpensive against the strong features it offers
  • It comes with two-tank system that hold 64-ounces of cleaning solution
  • It comes with motorized bushing with power-controlled button

Our Verdict:

The suction power is great for soaking up all the cleaning fluids and remaining moisture dries quickly. Wide-set handle and large wheels makes easy to move the machine around large areas.

Handheld Carpet Cleaner Specifications:

Power Source


Surface Recommendation

Stairs, Car Interiors and Upholstery

Tank Capacity

64 oz



Portable Spot Cleaner Rug Doctor for Upholstery Cleaning:

Bissell is pioneer in cleaning industry who keep bringing the new technologies and designs to the market. The Bissell Multi-Purpose Portable Carpet cleaner is one such versatile Upholstery cleaner machine that is very compact and lite weight at 9.6 lbs.

This multipurpose small carpet cleaner combines warm water, a targeted cleaning formula, and powerful suction to get deep down to tackle tough spots.

Because of powerful suction, 1400B spot cleaner remove deep-down dirt, spots, and stains quickly and more effectively. With 3″ tough stain tool helps you clean hard-to-reach areas and well suited for carpet, upholstery, stairs, and car interior cleaning.

Why we like portable carpet cleaner?

  • It comes with decent suction power
  • Very compact and lite weight design
  • It is easy fill and refill the water tank
  • Very easy to store and carry out
  • Perfect choice for stairs and car interior cleaning

Our Verdict:

This versatile portable cleaner is very portable and convenient for small to medium jobs and easily movable across multistory floors.

Handheld Carpet Cleaner Specifications:

Power Source


Surface Recommendation

Multi Surface, from carpets to stair

Tank Capacity

48 oz



Hoover Power Scrub Deluxe Carpet Cleaner:

Hoover Power Scrub Deluxe Carpet Washer FH50150 is one of the lightest carpet cleaners available today in the market. It’s an upright portable vacuum that designed to clean carpets and upholstery, this spot cleaner for carpets perfectly gets rid of spills and daily messes like anything.

Hoover specifically designs their best small carpet cleaner to be powerful. The Power Scrub Deluxe provides equal and powerful suction using a DualV Nozzle. Additionally, the machine uses forces heated air to dry your carpet faster. The SpinScrub Brush System cleans faster than any other portable carpet cleaner.

Why we like portable carpet cleaner?

  • It is lightweight, easy-to-store and highly portable carpet cleaner
  • Evenly cleans surfaces with equal suction
  • Perfect fit for hard-to-reach clean areas
  • Comes with dual removable tanks system
  • Designed to handle self-cleaning of the machine
  • It has automatic detergent mixing feature
  • It is easy fill and refill the water tank
  • Comes with heated drying features which help speed up drying time

Our Verdict:

DualV Nozzle helps to clean surfaces quickly and evenly with equal suction. Two separate tanks for clean and dirty water let you fill, empty and rinse each tank easily. Suits well for deep carpet cleaning using powerful 360-degree brushes.

Handheld Carpet Cleaner Specifications:

Power Source


Surface Recommendation

Carpets, Upholstery and Area Rugs

Tank Capacity

128 oz



Portable Spot and Stain Cleaner:

Hoover FH11300PC Spotless portable cleaner is one of the lightest devices available on the market according to the Hoover company website. It is a smaller spot cleaner which is easy to store and convenient to use in various jobs.

It comes with powerful tools for carpet and stairs cleaning in addition to upholstery. This portable carpet cleaner also comes with two removable water tanks, one for clean and one for dirty water, the Hoover Spotless Carpet Cleaner is designed to handle a number of stains.

This machine has a 3.5-Amp motor that allows this tool to spray, scrub and remove a variety of stains, including pet stains. It weighs approximately 9-pounds.

It is also equipped with self-clean technology that allows it to remove dirt and bacteria from its cleaning hose. It will never spread bacteria, mold, or mildew. This spotless portable carpet cleaner is designed for you if you are concern with allergen.

Why we like portable carpet cleaner?

  • It is lightweight and highly portable carpet cleaner
  • Safe to use on hardwood floors
  • Comes with dual removable tanks system
  • Designed to handle self-cleaning of the machine
  • It has automatic detergent mixing feature
  • It is easy fill and refill the water tank
  • Very easy to store and carry out

Our Verdict:

Lightweight model allows you to take it wherever the mess. Comes with affordable price. Suits well for deep carpet cleaning using powerful 360-degree brushes.

Handheld Carpet Cleaner Specifications:

Power Source


Surface Recommendation

Carpets and Upholstery

Tank Capacity

36 Ounces



Key Components of a Portable Carpet Cleaner


This component creates the pressure that injects the water or solution into the carpet. Pump pressure levels range various from 60 – 500 psi (pounds per square inch).


The vacuum in the carpet cleaner extracts dirty water and cleaning solution from the carpet and empties it into an extraction tank. Vacuums are driven by motors that come in a variety of configurations, including single 2-stage motors, two 3-stage motors, and three 2-stage motors

The power of a vacuum motor is commonly measured in airflow and water lift (inches). Airflow refers to the movement of air through the machine and typically ranges from 100 to more than 200 CFM (cubic feet per minute). Water lift measures the suction strength of the vacuum and typically ranges from 100 to more than 250 inches.

Solution Tanks

Clean water is stored in these tanks. Solution tanks range in size from 4.5 to 17 gallons.

Recovery Tanks

Extracted dirt, cleaning chemicals, and water goes into recovery tanks when vacuumed. The recovery tanks range in size from 4.5 to 15 gallons.

Heating Unit

Not all carpet cleaners come with heating unit, but this equipment heats the clean water to as high as 210ºF temperature in as little as three minutes. Heating elements can range from single tank-heating models, which heat water in the solution tank, to double inline heating elements, which heat water as it exits the cleaner.


Carpet cleaners usually come with a large floor wand. The wand can range in width from 10 inches to 12 inches and include one or two jets for dispensing and extracting fluids. Upholstery and stair wands are available as options. Vacuum and cleaning solution hoses come in a variety of lengths and can be ordered in custom lengths.

Below are some of key considerations when buying for a portable carpet cleaner

Vacuum industry is flooded with different models of portable carpet cleaners and often you are overwhelmed with too many choices, but we are here to help you to choose your best portable carpet cleaner based on your needs,


Since you are looking portable carpet cleaner for quick cleaning, you want a portable cleaner that is something very light and easily movable. Portable shampooer gives you that benefit, and it can make life easier, especially in big homes.

If you have plush carpet, you do not want a heavy portable carpet cleaner. By the way, most heavier models have wheel support if you need to work on thick carpet. For homes with plush carpet just find one with a long hose that does not need to be moved much. That will work just fine.


The bigger the machine, the more cleaning capacity machine will have. So you need to consider what is your cleaning job requirement, where you need to store the device. Choose a spot cleaner carpet machine if you cleaning area is small and it’s very easy to store.

Suction Power

A vacuum cleaner with powerful suction will absorb wager and dry the carpet very quickly compare to low suction vacuums which takes longer and eventually, it will result risk of mold. A powerful portable vacuum cleaner also gets rid of dirt and dust very deeply and quickly.

Tank Capacity

The size of tank you are looking in a portable carpet cleaner can be decided whether you have large carpeted room or small areas. If you are looking a portable cleaner for car or staircase, a lightweight and handy portable cleaner will be perfect fit for you which comes with smaller tank.

You may go with heavy machine if you are looking for big area cleaning and tank size will be bigger.

Pet Specific Portable Carpet Cleaner

There are some portable carpet cleaners are tailored-made for exclusively to clean pet messes. They are called as handheld carpet cleaners which are much better than regular portable carpet cleaners for pet cleaning job. If you need a portable carpet cleaner for pets, make sure to look for the word “pet” on the label.

Length of cord and hose

Look for longer cord and hose length, 5 meter of cord length is enough for most of room without moving the cleaner too much. Though, the length of cord and hose differs for every portable cleaner. If you are looking for light weight, compact spot carpet cleaners, then a short reach is fine. A heavier machine should have a long cord and hose.


Most of portable carpet cleaners are comes with standard one to two-year warranty for the machine. Make sure to read the warranty conditions before you place an order whether warranty covers for defects and parts.


Since the primary purpose of a portable carpet cleaner is to be easily to carried out and lightweight, most portable carpet cleaners will not come with extra attachments. Though, some models with some additional accessories, you may look for what purpose it’s being given before buying it.

Tips and Tricks for Using a Portable Carpet Cleaner

  • Before using the carpet cleaner, vacuum the carpet thoroughly and then apply a cleaning solution. The chemicals help dissolve grease and oils so that the final cleaning extracts even more dirt.
  • Use heated water on stained and heavily soiled synthetics. When used with a cleaning chemical, a heated carpet cleaner can remove stains such as ketchup, coffee, wine, pet urine, and ink.
  • Do not use heated water on natural fibers, like wool, which can shrink or suffer other kinds of damage at high temperatures.

Portable Carpet Steam Cleaner Buying Guide

1) What is different between Carpet Cleaner, Carpet Extractor or Portable Carpet Steam Cleaner?

No difference, they’re all names for the same machine that uses high pressure to inject water into a carpet and a powerful vacuum to extract the mess into a large recovery tank. These machines widely used to spot cleaning and for the same reason, it being called as small carpet cleaner by consumers.

2) Do I need a residential, commercial or industrial machine?

Residential and light commercial grade carpet cleaners provide pump pressure levels of up to 60 psi, solution and recovery tanks of up to 4.5 gallons, and single-jet wand heads that are 10″ wide. For extraction power, the products generally offer water column lift in the 80 to 100″ range and airflow in the 90 to 100 CFM range.

3) Do I need a hot-water machine?

Hot water machines, sometimes referred to as heated carpet cleaners or steam carpet cleaners, are best for the dirtiest jobs and offer the fastest drying times. However, using cold-water is often the only option for natural fibers, like wool.

To clean with cold water you can switch off the heat feature in a steam carpet cleaner or use a cold-water machine. Many cold-water machines will let you add hot water up to 210 ºF, but these non-heated machines can’t heat cold water.

4) Do I need special upholstery cleaner machine?

No, you need to have a specific upholstery cleaner machine but many of the machines reviewed above all works well for upholstery cleaning.

5) Do I need hard-floor capability?

Dual function carpet cleaners include both a carpet cleaner and a special attachment for hard surfaces. Hard surface attachment is a 12″ four-jet squeegee wand that allows for non-heated cleaning and simultaneous extraction on sealed vinyl floors, sealed and unsealed concrete, linoleum, tile, limestone, marble, and other sealed and non-sealed surfaces.

Final Thoughts: 

Whether your home has carpet floors or tiles floors, you need to keep a portable carpet cleaner accessible to tackle any emergency. The best portable carpet cleaners clean away pet stains and gridlock dirt very quickly that can otherwise take hours to clean up.

Portable carpet cleaners are most trending product in vacuums industry next to robotic vacuums and market is full of portable carpet cleaners for selling. If you are puzzled taking a decision on best suitable portable vacuum cleaner for your requirements, we have provided you the best portable carpet cleaners in market based on our detailed assessment and customer feedback’s.

Overall, the best portable carpet cleaner from our ultimate review list is Bissell SpotBot Pet handsfree Spot and Stain Cleaner with Deep Reach Technology.

You may also look at our ultimate step-by-step vacuum cleaners buying guide.

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