Has your carpet been subject to many unfortunate spillages and stains? If you live in a household with children or animals then this is likely to be an inevitable occurrence.
These stains can be difficult to remove if they aren't dealt with correctly. A carpet cleaner is the perfect solution that allows you to act upon and remove these stains and marks with ease.
Thanks to the advancements in modern technology, portable carpet cleaners offer the versatility that allows you to clean your carpets with ease. You no longer have to use a full-sized model if you simply require its use for a simple spot clean.
They're also ideal for those who have limited space available as they consume much less room than the standard variations.
We have scoured the market before selecting our top 8 picks of the best portable carpet cleaners available.
OUR TOP PICK
With raving reviews, the Bissell Spot Clean Professional Portable Carpet Cleaner is a strong contender.
It is not only suitable for carpets but it can be used on stairs, upholstery, auto interiors, and more so you aren't limited to the surfaces that you can clean. As a professional standard cleaner, it will provide a deep clean to remove stubborn marks and stains.
The combination of superior suction and scrubbing action will ensure that the cleaner works into the fibers of the carpet to remove any embedded dirt particles.
Thanks to the 20ft cord you aren't restricted on the areas that you can reach. It also has a 96 oz tank which will allow you to clean the carpet without needing to refill it regularly.
Weighing a minimal 13 pounds it is a lightweight option that is easy to lift and handle. It is also compactly sized allowing for easy storage when it isn't in use.
You are provided with a 3'' tough stain tool which is going to be effective in removing pet stains and other stubborn marks, a stair tool that makes cleaning your stairs much easier, and a trial size bottle of the PRO MAX Clean and Protect formula.
- Thanks to the compact size of this cleaner it is easy to lift and maneuver.
- It is covered by a 2 year limited warranty so there is help available should you experience any issues.
- It comes with detailed instructions which allow for easy setup and use.
- This cleaner is effective at removing tough stains from different surfaces.
- The durability of the hose could be improved because the way that it is wrapped around the unit can cause it to tear.
Entering the market at an affordable price, the Hoover Spotless Portable Carpet and Upholstery Spot Cleaner is an ideal option for those on a budget.
Although it retails below $100 it doesn't compromise on performance. The spray and scrub action and deep cleaning hygienic tools will provide a thorough clean removing marks and stains from the carpet regardless of their severity.
Designed with two tanks, the clean and dirty water are separated allowing you to empty and rinse them as and when required without having to remove both at the same time. The 5ft hose offers a longer reach allowing you to remove stains from hard to access areas without any restrictions.
At 15" tall and only 9 lbs heavy, this is a portable unit that is going to be easy to lift when required. The compact design also allows for easy and convenient storage when it isn't in use.
- The attachments provided possess antimicrobial properties which will be effective in extracting spots and stains.
- Using the self-cleaning hose you can flush out any debris and doing so will prevent unwanted odors from gathering.
- As you are provided with a trial size cleaning solution, you can achieve the best cleaning results.
- Affordably priced, it is a great option for those who are on a budget.
- The tanks are quite small so some people may find that they require frequent refilling.
If you own pets, you will likely benefit from investing in the Bissell SpotBot Pet Handsfree Spot and Stain Cleaner.
Pets are often prone to running indoors with dirty paws and this model provides an easy way of getting rid of these marks. The preset cleaning cycles adopt spray and scrub suction working to remove tough stains from the surface of your carpet.
You can choose between two cleaning brushes depending on the severity of the stain that you are trying to remove.
The brush on the unit of the cleaner utilizes deep reach technology to work into the fibers of the carpet to remove dirt particles and odors. The hose and tool are ideal for cleaning upholstery, auto interiors, stairs, or any other hard to clean soft surfaces.
The Microban Antimicrobial Product protection helps to eliminate odors so that your carpets and upholstery will be left smelling fresh.
The tank is generously sized and the cord measures 15ft which allows you to reach farther with the unit.
- This cleaner is covered by a 1 year limited warranty so there is help available if you experience any issues with the product's functionality.
- Along with the cleaner you are provided with pet stain and odor formula, pet oxy boost formula, and a 3" tough stain stool.
- It can be used to remove stubborn stains without needing to be refilled regularly.
- As a compact cleaner, it can easily fit into smaller spaces to fulfill multiple cleaning purposes.
- The automatic cycle is prone to leaving a lot of moisture and solution on the carpet so you may find yourself having to use the hose or other resources to remove the water.
The Rug Doctor Pet Portable Spot Cleaner is a versatile option designed with an extending handle and wheels for easy maneuverability. The tanks are separated with one designated to clean water and the other for wastewater.
The sleek design means that the hose can be wrapped around the lower part of the unit and the attachment can then be secured between the two tanks. As a result, it is going to be easy to store and is an ideal option for those who are limited on available space.
Boasting twice the amount of suction in comparison to offerings from other brands, it will eliminate the presence of pet stains and odors. It also utilizes a dual-action tool that features rubberized bristles.
The design of this attachment means that lighter and more severe stains can be removed easily. It can also be used on a range of different surfaces besides carpets, this includes carpets, rugs, upholstery, and auto interiors.
- The portable design makes it much easier to use and allows you to tackle a range of areas.
- You are provided with clear instructions which allow for easy use.
- Each of the tanks is easy to fill up and empty for greater user convenience.
- The high-quality suction components deliver impressive performance with noticeable results.
- Some customers have reported that this cleaner is prone to leaking a small amount of water which may become problematic if it goes unnoticed.
Another offering from the Bissell range is the Multi-Purpose Portable Carpet and Upholstery Cleaner. Measuring 8.25 x 17.25 x 12.5" and weighing 14 lbs it is a compact and lightweight option that is going to be easy to handle and maneuver to different areas of your home.
Using this cleaner you can tackle small and tough stains with ease. The powerful suction attachment will disperse a strong output of water that is going to be effective in fulfilling in removing most stains.
Although it is predominantly intended for cleaning carpets, it can also be used to clean stairs, upholstery, and auto interiors. Because of this, regardless of where a stain occurs, using this cleaner it will be easy to remove.
Each of the tanks can be easily removed for emptying and filling when requiring. Along with the cleaner you are provided with a trail size spot and stain cleaning product that has been specifically formulated to loosen and eventually remove soiled stains.
- This cleaner is covered by a 1 year limited warranty so there is help available should you experience any issues.
- As an affordably priced carpet cleaner, it is an ideal option for those who are on a budget.
- It functions at a fast speed and is effective in removing any stains.
- The length of the cord means that you can use this cleaner without any restrictions.
- Some customers have reported that this cleaner produces a lot of noise which may not be ideal for those who may find it distracting.
Offering versatility and affordability without compromising on performance, the Hoover PowerDash GO Portable Spot Cleaner can be used for spot cleaning carpets, upholstery, and auto interiors.
As a powerful appliance, it can be used to tackle a range of stains following a spillage or accident and this is further benefited by the spot and stain pet tool scrub which will apply an effective motion to release these particles.
At 6.5 pounds it is a lightweight cleaner that is going to be easy to handle and lift. It also features a robust handle which will make this task much easier.
As such, when attempting to clean stairs or upholstery etc, it isn't going to feel overly weighty. The compact size also means that it can be easily stored away in between uses.
The dual tank system separates the clean water from the dirty and allows for easy refilling and emptying when required.
Along with the cleaner, you are also provided with a trail size spot cleaner solution so you can witness its effectiveness before investing in the larger bottles.
- As an affordably priced cleaner, it is a worthy option for those on a budget.
- The simple concept means that it is easy to set up and use.
- The cleaner itself is easy to clean following use.
- It is lightweight and compactly sized allowing for convenient and easy handling.
- Although it is effective in removing single spots because it has a smaller tank it isn't the most practical option for cleaning multiple spots.
The Bissell 20037 Cordless Portable Carpet Cleaner is a great option for pet owners. The spray and scrub suction feature removes pet stains and messes from a range of surfaces including carpets of course, but also upholstery, stairs, rugs, and auto interiors.
Should you notice stains in any of these areas you are not presented with any limitations regarding how the cleaner can be used.
As a cordless cleaner, it doesn't come with any cord attachments. Because of this, you can simply reach for the cleaner when you require its use without having to plug it in beforehand.
This also provides you with greater freedom when using the cleaner as you aren't restricted to a plug point so you can use it to clean hard to reach areas.
Impressively, this cleaner is effective in removing a range of stains whether this is dirt, mud, grass, wine, makeup, grease, or anything else.
Upon using this cleaner for spot cleaning the stained surfaces will likely appear as good as new.
Conveniently the formula can be stored inside of this machine when it is not in use. It also doesn't need to be mixed with water so it is ready to use right away.
- You are provided with the tough stain tool and two trail-sized formulas so you can test them out before purchasing the larger bottles.
- It retails at an affordable price which is an ideal option for those working with tighter budgets.
- The suction nozzle and brush are easy to remove for cleaning and maintaining the cleaner in between uses.
- As a lightweight cleaner, it is easy to handle and use for cleaning different areas.
- As a cordless cleaner, it is powered by batteries which can take some time to charge and isn't very convenient if you require quick use of this cleaner.
Specializing in the removal of tough stains and marks, the BISSELL SpotClean Portable Carpet Cleaner comes with a deep reach tool that is going to work into the fibers of the carpet to remove embedded dirt and other particles.
It features a built-in heater and utilizes heatwave technology which maintains a consistent temperature of the water for the duration of the cleaning process.
The tank has a 37 ounce capacity with one designated for the collection of dirty water and the other for the clean water and formula.
A great thing about this cleaner is that it comes with multiple tools. This includes the tough stain tool, deep reach tool, and self-cleaning tool each of which are better at removing particular stains and working on certain areas.
Aside from this, you are also provided with a trial-sized bottle of the professional spot and stain formula which allows you to try it before buying a larger bottle.
Both tanks can be removed for easy refilling and emptying when necessary. The hydro rinse self-cleaning hose tool allows you to clean the hose after use.
As such, built-up pet hair can be washed out so that it doesn't clog up the hose. This will also help to eliminate the presence of any odors too.
- The compact size and lightweight feel of this cleaner make it easy to handle and store.
- It is particularly effective at deep cleaning stubborn stains.
- It is designed with a generously sized handle which makes it easier to maneuver.
- Setting up and using this cleaner is a straightforward process.
- The hose is a little short which can prove restricting when trying to maneuver this cleaner to reach areas at a further distance from the plug point.
8 Best Portable Carpet Cleaners Buying Guide
Many factors will influence your purchase when browsing through the offerings on the market.
You must ensure that the cleaner is suitable for the carpets inside your home, otherwise, it isn't going to be very effective in achieving the anticipated results.
Approaching the market with the following criteria in mind will prove useful in helping you to select the best product.
When contemplating which cleaner is best for your needs, one of the most influential factors is likely to concern how well it performs.
You don't want to invest in a cleaner that is ineffective in removing the stains or dirt from your carpet.
The best offerings will remove a range of marks, stubborn stains included. It should also be effective in sucking up the cleaning solution afterward because this will then allow it to dry faster.
Those that are ineffective in doing so will leave your carpet feeling rather damp for some time.
Ease of Use
Ideally, your cleaner should be easy to use. Spending a lengthy amount of time trying to figure out which part goes where is likely to increase frustrations and so the addition of a manual is preferable as you can consult it with any queries that you may have regarding the setup of the cleaner.
The more features that the cleaner is equipped with, the more complex using it becomes. The water tank will likely have lines that provide a guide regarding how much water it can hold.
You may also be able to choose different cleaning cycles, some of which will require a full load and others which will require less for a quicker cycle. It is also important to consider how easy it is to clean.
Neglecting this chore can cause a build-up of dirt which will ultimately affect how well it functions in the future. The cleaner should be easy to take apart and the components should be easy to clean.
The Water Tank Capacity
Portable cleaners aren't going to have the same sized tanks as larger models because as implied by the name they are only intended for spot cleaning or the completion of small cleaning tasks.
It is unlikely that you are going to reach for one of these units if you are going to be cleaning the whole of your living room.
A portable cleaner is unlikely to have a tank with a capacity exceeding 64 ounces, however, one with this size is likely to be more than sufficient and will likely serve its intended purpose without requiring regular refilling.
The Weight Of The Cleaner
Though these cleaners are portable models they aren't necessarily lightweight. While some may appear small, they can soon feel tiresome after spending some time using it cleaning different areas in your home.
The weight will also determine how easy the unit is to lift. Those that are larger aren't necessarily more powerful so you needn't feel obliged to purchase a larger option with this expectation.
Instead, we would recommend that you opt for one which is going to be much easier to handle. You will unlikely find a portable model that weighs more than 14/15 pounds.
When reading the product specs assess whether this weight relates to the product as it is or when the tank is filled with water.
For most, the functionality of the cleaner will decide its worthiness of purchase.
Consider the cleaner's suitability with different surfaces, while they are predominantly intended for cleaning carpets, many can also be used to clean hard floors and upholstery.
As such you are not going to be limited in how you can use the unit. If a drink is accidentally spilled on your couch, simply reach for the cleaner and it can help to get rid of any marks.
If you have a shag carpet, you will need to opt for a cleaner that is capable of thoroughly cleaning each of the fibers.
Attachments and Special Features
The majority of brands provide you with at least one cleaning attachment but some will provide more. Essentially, these attachments allow you to clean hard to access areas that would otherwise be difficult to reach using the cleaners standard attachment.
Others will include features such as an automatic shut-off function which will turn the cleaner off when the tank has run out of water.
Some will be equipped with more specialized features while others will be more general. It is important to consider what features you will benefit from. Check the specifications of the cleaner beforehand as this will state all of the features and functions.
The Length Of The Cord
The length of the cord will determine how easy it is to navigate. Most power cords tend to be around 15 feet or longer and it is unlikely that you will find a cleaner with a cord shorter than this.
A cord of this length is likely to be ample for cleaning the majority of rooms. You may wish to measure the distance from the outlets to the area where the cleaner will need to reach to evaluate the practicality of the cord length.
A cord that is too short is going to provide you with issues regarding maneuverability. There are many cordless options available.
However, if you are inclined to purchase one of this kind remember that it is going to require charging. You don't want to reach for it to clean a spill on your carpet only to find that it is insufficiently charged.
While some portable carpet cleaners retail for around $100, others can be slightly more costly. Although it is not necessarily the case that a higher costing cleaner equates to better performance, it is worth checking that the unit offers the build quality and features that you require.
Setting a budget can help you navigate your search towards the most appropriate offerings within this price range.
Don't be deterred by higher price tags as there are many offerings from well-known brands that retail within an affordable price range.
Before purchasing your carpet cleaner it is worth checking whether or not it is covered by a manufacturer's warranty.
If the product doesn't function as intended or it doesn't meet your expectations instead leaving you dissatisfied, the brand is then responsible for rectifying the issue.
As a result, they may offer to exchange or refund the product. Some will also provide you with access to their customer service support team so you can contact someone if you experience any issues with your purchase.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is an at-home carpet cleaner worth it?
If you or others in your household are prone to spilling drinks or you have pets that tend to run indoors with mucky feet that cause your floor to become dirty, you will likely benefit from the purchase of a small cleaner.
If the stains are more extensive or your carpets require more in-depth cleaning you will likely benefit from hiring a larger model.