Best Handheld Carpet Cleaner

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You need the best handheld carpet cleaner so that you can easily remove pet stains, spot cleaning & collecting dust & dirt from your rugs or carpet.

These carpet cleaners are built to provide in-depth cleaning on rugs. It uses water and a cleaning solution to get rid of the dust and debris from carpeted floors.

Portable carpet cleaners have the same functionality, but they are primarily used to remove marks and stains.

These smaller versions are compact, lightweight and easy to use. You can utilize a regular vacuum cleaner to clean the carpets.

Top 4 Handheld Carpet Cleaner Reviews

Some research is required if you are looking for the best portable vacuum cleaners in the UK market. However, we have done the hard work and compiled a list of some excellent vacuums that can give you a spot-free carpet.

Handheld Carpet Cleaner    

1. BISSELL SpotClean PRO– Best Handheld Carpet Cleaner

BISSELL SpotClean PRO Portable Carpet Cleaner

  • Weight: 6 kg
  • Cleaning tank. 2.5 litre
  • Power cable. 6 feet

Looking to get rid of some old carpet stains? Choose Bissell SpotClean. Our top recommendation and one of the best carpet cleaners, Bissell SpotClean pro is a portable vacuum for quick carpet cleaning.

750W powerful motor, decent dust carrying ability, and useful accessories make it a nice household vacuum. Its 1.3-meter hose is sufficient to reach the tight corners. Dust emptying of the vacuum is also easy. SpotClean may not have the power of a full-sized vacuum, but it gives you excellent cleaning results on small areas.

Whether the red wine mark is on a rug or upholstery material, SpotClean has the right cleaning head. At a weight of just above five kg, the vacuum is easy to move and transport. However, a full tank will add to the load. So, it’s suggested using half of its capacity for small household cleanups.

Due to its contoured handle located at the centre, the vacuum is easy to pick and move to other places. There are pegs on both its sides that can be used to clip the hose and power cable during storage. So, the vacuum is not only easier to set up and but the makers have taken care of the storage part as well.

SpotClean has a decent sized transparent tank, which is big enough to cope with all the house dirt. The portable vacuum has a simple operation. Start with filling the vacuum tank with a lukewarm water and detergent mix. Spray the combination on stains using a trigger located on the wand. Agitate the detergent mix using provided brush and then use its nozzle to draw all the waste and moisture.

Key Features:

  • Excellent stain removal on carpets and upholstery
  • Decent sized cleaning tank
  • Powerful moisture drying


2. Bissell 36981 Spotclean– Best Carpet Stain Remover

Bissell 36981 Spotclean Carpet Cleaner

  • Weight. 4 kg
  • Cleaning tank. 1 litre
  • Power cable: 15 feet

Lightweight, ergonomically designed and easy to use; these are three features that our experts like about the Bissell 36981 and you are going to love them as well. Convenient handle makes the vacuum easy to take along and a couple of pegs assist you to wind up its long power cable.

Equipped with 750 W powerful motor, the vacuum is a workhorse in terms of carpet cleaning. Its superb ability to remove both fresh and old stains gives you a fresh carpet whenever you want. The portable carpet cleaner uses HeatWave Technology to maintain constant water temperature while you clean. So, you don’t have to wait to get the water heated for better results. It has a small water tank when compared to SpotClean Pro.

However, one litre is sufficient for small and medium-sized homes: so, you will not spend much time filling and emptying the tank. Filling the tank is very easy, and the same is emptying. There are included attachments that assist you to clean different types of carpets and upholstery items. So, whether it’s a stubborn old stain or a fresh spill, you will get desired cleaning results.

Bissell compensates for a small water tank by giving you a long power cable, which provides you with enough accessibility over the small areas like stairs. The portable comes with two BISSELL compact carpet shampoo, which is a bonus because you will not have to look for another item. The shampoo contains biodegradable detergents, and there are no heavy metals, optical brighteners, phosphates, or dyes. You can use any other shampoo once these two are consumed.

Key Features:

  • Best portable carpet cleaner for the old and everyday spill as well as marks
  • Heatwave Technology for content water temperature
  • Include sample solution shampoos; one-time order for carpet cleaning


3. Rug Doctor Portable Spot Cleaner

Rug Doctor Portable Spot Cleaner

  • Weight. 9 kg
  • Cleaning tank. 1.9 liter
  • Power cable. 15 feet

If you want to enjoy a clean surrounding, choose spot cleaner from Rug Doctor: an efficient cleaning device with results that can match a commercial vacuum. Whether its carpet spots, old stains, everyday spills or any other dirt, this carpet cleaner draws all of them because of its powerful suction. Apart from its robust internal components, the vacuum has a user-friendly design, that adds to the overall ease of use.

The hand carpet cleaning machine comes with motorized brush heads to agitate the dirt. It vibrates the carpet fibres from deep inside to bring all the dirt and debris on the surface. With its powerful suction helped by the brush bar, the carpet vacuum quickly picks all the dust from carpets.

The brush bar can be switched on or off using a button on the primary body. As per its makers, the spot cleaner has double suction strength if compared to similar portable vacuums.
Tank capacity is suitable for medium and big homes. The vacuum is comparatively more massive then Bissell options we talked about earlier today. However, due to included pair of wheels, the movement becomes more effortless. Also, it has an expandable suitcase-like handle that makes a move even more straightforward. Due to its compact size and included hose, the portable is ideal for stair carpets.

The vacuum is water and leakage proof, so you don’t have to worry about any internal failure while working. Such a structure makes it durable and trustworthy. If you have a big family or a pet in your house, the portable spot cleaner from Rug Doctor is a suitable choice.

Key Features:

  • Power controlled motorized brushes
  • Ten amps’ motor generates power suction
  • Expandable wheels and two wheels for added manoeuvrability
  • The cleaning head of 4.5 inches
  • Long power cable


4. Maxi Vac Electric Carpet Rug Spot Cleaner & Stain Remover

Electric Carpet Rug Spot Cleaner

  • Weight. 2.7 kg
  • Cleaning tank. 0.3 liter/0.9 for dirty water
  • Power cable. 10 feet

The electronic carpet spot cleaner from Maxi Vac is an excellent handheld carpet cleaner; a perfect alternative for a massive upright or cylinder vacuum. The vacuum is lightweight, portable and mobile. It comes with a shoulder strap, which makes it even more mobile. So, apart from cleaning the carpets, you can also use it for upholstery items and car seats.

You know about the HEPA filters, traps all the dust particles and allergens to give you a pure environment. The electric carpet had the same; hence, it’s suitable for allergic individuals. It has a power cable worth 10 feet, which is sufficient clean anywhere in a medium-sized room without looking for other power outlets. Included motor has 600W of power, which is excellent for household carpet cleaning.

Good on carpets, the spot cleaner is also valid on the upholstery to remove marks, stains, spots and dirt. It works with all the detergents so that you can get anyone according to your preference.

The vacuum leaves some moisture behind after you the cleaning. If you can wait for a while, once you are done with carpet cleanings, then choose the cost-effective option from Maxi Vac.

As per its power and features, you cannot use the Spot Cleaner as a primary carpet cleaner. However, if you need a tiny alternative to clean carpeted areas or you want to take care of accidental spills, Maxi Vac gives you an efficient product.

Key Features:

  • Compact and lightweight
  • Long power cable
  • Affordable
  • Easy to store
  • High suction power


Buying Guide- What to Consider?

Portable carpet cleaners are popular, so you will see many options while you look for one. Amazon results will be overwhelming. However, after reading this buying guide, you can choose the right choice.

While searching for a carpet cleaner, consider the following factors:

a. Weight: Look for a lightweight, portable carpet vacuum. More substantial the vacuum, more it will cause difficulties while cleaning an area. If you are living on a duplex or multi floor apartments, it will be a tiresome task to cross the stairs with the cleaning machine.

b. Suction power: With portable vacuums, it is essential to look for high suction power. As these machines have to draw the moisture as well, the suction strength is necessary, otherwise, you will be left with a wet carpet. You would not want that. Also, if the vacuum has a decent suction, it will also take the mildew with leftover moisture.

c. Tank size: Portable vacuum cleaners are built with a tank that stores the detergent and water mix. If you need a vacuum only for on the spot quick carpet cleaning, a cleaner with a small water tank will do the trick. On the other hand, if you need to cover significant areas, go for a vacuum with bigger water carrying capacity.

d. Brush cleaning action: Several portable spaces come with a cleaning head comprising revolving brushes. Example, the Spot Cleaner from Rug doctor. Such vacuums are better in terms of loosening the dust and removing them from the carpets. Another type of brush movement in carpet cleaners is back and forth. Oscillating or revolving brushes are better than other cleaning head because the former can tackle even the stubborn dust in no time.

e. Length of the power cable: An extended power cable means you will get a large cleaning radius. Look for a portable carpet vacuum with a decent sized power cable that can give you unrestricted cleaning coverage even in the biggest rooms of your house. In case of a heavy portable vacuum, a long power cable gives you the luxury to clean the carpets without much moving or lifting of its primary unit. Moreover, if you have an extended power line, you don’t have to look for a power outlet at every place.

Similar to the power cable, the length of the vacuum hose is also essential. Both of these components, when combined, should give you an excellent cleaning radius. As you read in the descriptions given above, portable carpets cleaners come with different cable length. Choose what is best for your house.

f. Ease of storage: Unless you don’t want to place a portable vacuum in your living room or kitchen, you should also plan its storage. Generally, portable carpet vacuums are compact and easy to store. However, they have different dimensions according to the brand and model. So, choose a vacuum that you can store easily. Several models come with pegs or clips that keeps the hose and power cables in place, so look for this feature as well.

g. Pet-friendly: Do you own a cat or dog and also have carpeted floors in the house? Then a portable rug cleaner can be a useful product for you. But, only if it can pick the pet excretions. So, look for a spot carpet cleaner for pet stains that can keep the carpets free from pet marks or stains.

h. Accessories: Do you need some extra attachments while maintaining carpeted floors? If yes, then look for a portable carpet vacuum with useful attachments that can assist you while cleaning upholstery and other objects. Several variants have a separate tool or brush for upholstery. Choose one of them if you also want to clean the furniture or car seats.

i. Warranty: Irrelevant of the product, you should always look for a manufacturer’s warranty. Same goes with the portable vacuum cleaners. Look for a variant that has at least a warranty of one or two years.

We have discussed all the essential features that decide the performance and worth of a portable carpet vacuum. So, no more guesswork required here. Check the four options we discussed and choose one of them. If you want to explore, check the buying guide and choose a fruitful product.

What Is a Handheld Carpet Cleaner?

As it’s clear from the name, cleaners meant to maintain the carpeted floors are sold as carpet vacuums. A handheld has the same functionality but has compact size and dimensions. Generally, a handheld carpet cleaner is used for removing marks from carpeted floors.

Whether it’s a fresh spill or old spot, a handheld can quickly give you the desired results. Apart from cleaning spots and stains, a handheld carpet cleaner can be used for quick cleanup on rugs and upholstery objects like furniture or car seats. However, you should not choose a handheld carpet vacuum, if you need to wipe out an entire floor. Its important parts are:

a. Pump: Spreads water or detergent mix on the carpet. Depending upon the model, the pressure level of a pump varies between 60-500 pounds per square inch.

b. Cleaning tank: Hold the detergent mix required for carpet cleaning.

c. Heating device: Only carpet cleaners or wet and dry vacuum have a heating unit inside.

Whatever portable carpet vacuums we discussed today, these components are present in all of them. The functionality of the components remains the same; irrelevant of brand or model.

Different Types of Carpet Cleaning Machines

All the carpet cleaners and cleaning professionals are different and use a variety of technologies to attract buyers with its performance and positive word of mouth. In this section, we will discuss all the types of carpet cleaning methods and related machines.

(1) Steam Cleaning:

HWE (hot water extraction), that’s what we technically call steam cleaning. First, the carpet is treated with a solution that loosens the accumulated dust. Then pressurized steam is used to rinse clean the carpets thoroughly, and at the same, a vacuum draws all the water, dirt and moisture. All the waste is collected into a tank for disposal.

Steam cleaning technology is widely used in commercial and residential areas. Professionals use a truck-mounted vacuum and water tank for better dust capacity and efficiency. A compact version of steam cleaners is also available in the UK market. The smaller or portable steam cleaners are comparatively less powerful. It’s the reason why the handheld steam cleaners are only used for household cleaning.


  • Cleans all types of dust, even the embedded and accumulated ones
  • Due to steam, the carpets are hygienically cleaned, free from all germs and contaminants


  • If done correctly, steam cleaner has never failing results

(2) Shampooing:

A safe, effective and reliable method of carpet cleaning. First, the area is vacuum cleaned. Then, a carpet cleaner is used with the right setting and carpet cleaning solution.


  • Economical as the carpet shampoo used is cheaper than other chemical-based cleaning solutions


  • If using the right cleaning solution and vacuum, there are no negative aspects of carpet shampooing

(3) Encapsulation:

Official carpets are generally cleaned by this method. First, the commercial-grade carpet is treated with an encapsulation liquid, then a machine is used to agitate the solution inside the carpets. This liquid dries and traps all the dirt or soil. Finally, a vacuum cleaner is used to collect all the dried crystal containing dust and debris.


  • The cleaning process is comparatively faster, so if you are following the procedure on a weekday, there will be less downtime


  • Not suitable for residential carpets
  • Inefficient on heavily soiled carpets

(4) Host Carpet Cleaning:

Also referred to as Absorbent Compound cleaning, this process an absorbent that attracts all the dirt from the carpeted floors. To be more specific, first the carpets are vacuumed, then an absorbent is applied over it.

After that, a machine is used to agitate the compound with the carpet fibres further. Once all the dirt is accumulated inside the absorbent compound, the area is vacuum cleaned again.


  • Inexpensive way
  • Dries immediately, so no drop of service levels in the office


  • Not suitable for excretory waste like urine deposits
  • If a poor vacuum is used, the absorbent may be left inside the fibres to attract further debris

(5) Dry Carpet Cleaning:

Also referred to as bonnet cleaning or absorbent based cleaning, the process is not at all dry. First, a cleaning solution is sprayed over the carpets to bring sol together. Then a buffing machine is used over the carpets.

This machine has an absorbent pad at the bottom that soaks all the liquid, including the dust. Once the pad is soiled, it replaced with a new one to continue the process.


  • Less wastage of water
  • Carpets dry faster


  • Not efficient enough to absorb accumulated dust or excretory waste
  • Can be harsh on fibre carpets

Simple Ways of How to Clean Carpet by Hand

If you don’t want to invest in a carpet vacuum, we have also mentioned some of the carpet cleaning methods without using any machine.

Tomato sauce and dirt is not the right combination for your carpets. If you have a family with kids or pets, then you must know how to keep the carpets clean with using a steam cleaner or taking professional services. If you want to keep the floor clean without investing much on the resources, read on the given methods.

With carpet brush:

Prerequisites: Carpet brush and vacuum cleaner

Carpet brush can be used to remove the dirt and debris from a carpet. Then you have to do some physical work to use a brush to agitate dirt, including the accumulated ones. Once you are done, run vacuum cleaner to collect all the waste.

With baking soda

Prerequisites: Baking soda, vacuum cleaner, and brush

  • Vacuum the entire area and apply baking soda overall or only to the stains.
  • Use a spray bottle to mix hot water on baking soda. Remember, you don’t have to soak the floor with water, you need to spray it overall.
  • You can use an old toothbrush or a carpet brush, to scrub stubborn stains with warm water. Let it dry for three hours. Vacuum clean the area for a clean and fresh carpet.

With the Homemade Cleaning Solution

Cleaning the carpets with a DIY solution requires some hard work, but it’s inexpensive and free from toxic chemicals. First, we will create a cleaning solution with 3.5-litre water, ½ cup ammonia, and three teaspoon dish soap. Mix all these items once they are thoroughly combined and then add a few drops of essential oil for a fresh finish.

  • Vacuum the rug on both its sides and perform a spot test. Apply some of the cleaning solutions at a corner and see it causes any discolouration. If the solution does not spoil the appearance of the carpet, you can proceed with the next step.
  • Take the cleaning solution in a bowl, dip a brush or sponge into it and start scrubbing the rug.
  • Let them dry and in the meanwhile throw the solution and fill fresh water in the same bowl.
  • Use a squeegee or a dry towel to remove the extra moisture, including waste and odour from the rug.
  • Place the rug outside in the sun to dry. Flip it after a while so that both the sides can be free from moisture.
  • After the rugs are dried properly, use a vacuum to clean the carpet again.

How To Clean Carpet On Stairs Without Any Machine?

Carpeted stairs in a multi-story apartment attract dust, hence looks exhausted and dirty within a few weeks. There are various ways to clean stair carpets without a steaming machine, but the best one of them is a vinegar solution. In this section, we will talk about the steps involved in the process.

Pre-Requisites: Brush, Vacuum Cleaner, Vinegar, Salt and Lavender Oil

Remove The Dirt: Clean the carpets using a stiff brush. This can be a broom or an attachment in your vacuum cleaner. Sweep all the dust particles down to the stairs. Always start from the top.

Use a Vacuum: It’s time for you to use your Dyson, Bissell, or any other cleaning workhorse to vacuum the entire area. If you want a new vacuum for this step, choose Shark DuoClean. Again the same rule, start from the top and finish at the lowest level.

Prepare and Apply The Cleaning Solution: In a spray bottle, add vinegar and hot water. After few seconds add lavender oil and salt to the mixture, cover the cap and shake well. Spray each step liberally and use a brush to scrub all the areas, especially the marks.

Last step: Once the steps are dry, vacuum cleans the area again.

If you don’t have a vacuum cleaner in the house, then you can perform similar cleaning. However, you have to use a dry cloth towel instead. Let’s discuss the steps in detail.

Pre requisites: White vinegar, bucket, warm water, dry towel, scrub brush

  • Fill the bucket with water and add ¼ cup vinegar in it.
  • Dip a carpet brush into the prepared solution and scrub the carpet. Use little solution, because you have to make it moist, not wet.
  • Once you have rubbed all the targeted area with the cleaning solution, empty the bucket and fill it regular water. Use a dry towel, dip it into the water and start scrubbing the carpets again. You have to clean the dust, so use minimal water.

How To Remove Bad Smell From a Carpet?

Carpets tend to capture various odours and smell that never leaves them for life. However, if you have the right technique, such odours can be removed after some efforts. There are two ways to get fresh carpets. First, dust the area with diatomaceous earth and vacuum it after several hours.

The second process is similar; however, you have to use isopropyl alcohol instead of diatomaceous earth. Pout some juice at the source of the smell, wait for 15 minutes and use a towel to absorb extra moisture. Switch on the fan for fast drying.

Why it’s Necessary To Clean The Carpets?

To ensure proper cleanliness and hygiene in your house, it necessary to clean the carpets regularly. If not, then a dirty and contaminated carpet can cause several health problems. And it’s not a complicated thing to understand. If you are using the floor every day, it should be cleaned regularly. If you leave carpets soiled for a long time, dust will get accumulated and later you have to apply extra effort, time and money in the cleaning process.

Apart from that, there are various other reasons why you should include carpet cleaning in your weekly tasks:

  • Kids; they sometimes crawl on the surface, pick anything from the floor and take it in their mouth. Even pets show the same characters, especially kittens and dogs. If you have kids in the house and the carpets are dirty, then your loved ones might suffer from health troubles.
  • Adults are also vulnerable to stomach problems and flu if they come in contact with a dirty carpet regularly.
  • Dust particles trapped in the carpet fibres might trigger a reaction to any of allergic family members or employee if any of them are prone to dust borne allergies.
  • If there are stains, it should be cleaned right away. Otherwise, it might get stubborn, and you will not be able to get rid of them without investing in some toxic chemicals or cleaning solutions.
  • Dust and dirt results in unpleasant odour and harmful environment. If you want a calm and peaceful atmosphere in the house or office, get it cleaned.

These are the reason why we explained various domestic ways of carpet cleaning. If you think that you will not be able to maintain the rugs, contact professional cleaning services. If you want to spend a fresh, safe and hygienic life, keep the carpets as well as other parts of the house clean.

Summary: What is The Best Handheld Carpet Cleaner to Buy in the UK?

If you want to keep the carpets clean without spending much time and energy, you should invest in a portable carpet cleaner. We have already discussed the best among the currently available models in the UK market.

The Bissell SpotClean Pro is our Top Pick, you can go for it without any hesitation. It has the sufficient powerful suction to get things straight on your carpets and upholstery materials.

Moreover, the vacuum has one of the most massive water tanks available so that you can utilize the cleaning device for extensive multiple spot cleaning or a medium-sized area.

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