Which carpet cleaner at Home Depot is best?

If you’re looking for a carpet cleaner that can reliably clean any type of carpet, Home Depot carries a range of options, from upright models to more portable ones. These machines use a combination of cleaning solution, suction and brushes to reach deep into the carpet and lift debris, dirt, spills and odors. The best carpet cleaner you can find at Home Depot is the Hoover PowerScrub Elite Pet Upright Carpet Cleaner, which offers a handy quick-drying feature so you can use your floors again sooner. 

What to know before you buy a Home Depot carpet cleaner

Function and type

A carpet cleaner washes and removes deep stains using a special detergent or carpet shampooer. These machines work by using brushes that penetrate into the carpet’s thick fibers to release a foam, scrub and dislodge dirt, dander, hair, dust and debris via suction.

Some people mix up carpet cleaners with steam cleaners, but they differ in one main way. Steamers don’t use chemicals to clean. Instead, they use steam to loosen dirt that later gets vacuumed.

There are two main types of carpet cleaners:

  • Upright: These look similar to modern vacuum cleaners. They’re easy to use and can handle large rooms or entire homes. Upright models are usually heavier than portable ones at between 30 and 50 pounds. They’re also often more powerful, making them ideal for deep cleaning challenging areas.
  • Portable: Portable cleaners are easier to move around as they usually weigh between 20 and 40 pounds. They excel at deep cleaning. But, since they’re small, they’re not as effective in large areas. Because of this, they’re best for tackling sudden messes or smaller homes.

Home Depot sells several high-quality carpet cleaners. Each one has its brushes, hoses and accessories that make cleaning easy and effective. Some feature special rotating brushes that scrub at the carpet fibers, thus resulting in a deeper clean than you get with a stationary brush. Some of their carpet cleaners also come with extension tools that work well on upholstery, stairs or in tight spaces.

Frequency

In general, you should use a Home Depot carpet cleaner once every six to 18 months. The exact frequency depends on the following factors:

  • Foot traffic: The fewer people in your home or the less used a certain carpet is, the less frequently you need to clean it. In homes with low traffic, use the cleaner once every 12 to 18 months. If several people live with you or you regularly host get-togethers, consider cleaning the carpet every three months or so.
  • General carpet maintenance: If you regularly vacuum your carpet, don’t wear shoes at home and immediately clean up spills, you can get away with cleaning it once every 12 or so months.
  • Carpet type: For homes with thicker carpets, it might be necessary to clean them every three to six months. In low pile or flatter carpets, use the machine every six to 12 months instead.
  • Pets and kids: Households with children or pets need more regular cleaning, or once every six to 12 months. Pets especially cause a lot of hair, dander and dirt that can get trapped in the carpet.

Maintenance

You should perform regular maintenance on your Home Depot carpet cleaner, especially if you use it frequently. Before cleaning it, make sure it’s disconnected from any power sources.

Here are the best ways to maintain your machine and ensure it lasts a long time:

  • Clean out lint and hair: Lint, hair and other debris can get easily stuck in the machine. If the carpet cleaner has a screen or filter, empty it out after every use. This can improve suction for the future.
  • Nozzle and hose maintenance: Using water from a faucet or water hose, clean out the nozzles and hoses to remove excess debris.
  • Tank maintenance: After using the machine, empty out any contents in the tanks. Replace them with clean water and flush them out. Let them air dry completely.
  • Dust off the exterior: Disinfect or dust the exterior of the carpet cleaner with a damp rag every time you use it. This will cut back on allergens.

What to look for in a quality Home Depot carpet cleaner

Tanks

Nearly all Home Depot carpet cleaners come with two tanks. One tank is used to store the cleaning solution, which you can mix with clean water before using the machine. The other tank is meant to store the dirty water the machine produces when sucking up debris and other things from the carpet.

The larger the tanks are, the longer the carpet cleaner can run without you needing to replace the cleaning solution or empty them out. Some machines have a tank capacity of around 1 gallon, while smaller ones can only hold 1/4 gallon. Generally, portable machines have smaller tanks than upright ones.

Suction

Most Home Depot carpet cleaners have built-in suction. If it doesn’t, you should vacuum the area thoroughly until the carpet is no longer damp. Leaving the carpet too damp could damage the fibers or lead to mold growth or odors.

The more suction power a carpet cleaner has, the more effective it is at cleaning. However, a higher suction also means using more power. There are some energy-efficient modern models, though, which can help reduce energy usage. Portable machines usually have less suction power than upright models.

Cord length

Carpet cleaners from Home Depot usually have a cord length of between 14 and 20 feet, though some models have longer cords. Consider the surface area you need to clean and compare it with the cord length. That way, you can clean the carpet with minimal hassle.

How much you can expect to spend on a Home Depot carpet cleaner

Most Home Depot carpet cleaners cost $90-$300. Some of the higher-end models also function as standard vacuum cleaners.

Home Depot carpet cleaner FAQ

What else should I consider when using a carpet cleaner?

A. Make sure you properly ventilate the area so any fumes the machine causes can go out. Once you’ve cleaned an area, wait for it to completely dry before placing any furniture or other solid items on it. For best results, start in one corner and move the machine up and down in a slow, consistent manner. Each time you turn the machine around, let the lines overlap by about an inch so you don’t miss any sections.

Can a carpet cleaner damage my carpet?

A. Although rare, a carpet cleaner can damage carpet, especially if it uses rotating brushes or has strong suction. It can also happen if the carpet is thin or has fragile fibers. Carpets break down over time, so using a machine on an older carpet could also damage it. Finally, test out any new cleaning solutions in a discrete location to make sure it doesn’t damage the carpet.

What’s the best Home Depot carpet cleaner to buy?

Top Home Depot carpet cleaner

Hoover PowerScrub Elite Pet Upright Carpet Cleaner

Hoover PowerScrub Elite Pet Upright Carpet Cleaner

What you need to know: This powerful upright carpet cleaner is ideal for anyone who wants a professional deep clean in a smaller area.

What you’ll love: It has two large tanks that are easy to fill and empty out. It also automatically mixes the appropriate amount of cleaning solution for any task. This machine has several modes, including a deep clean and quick clean mode. The quick clean mode comes with HeatForce which makes drying faster.

What you should consider: Since it’s large, cleaning this machine can take a while.

Where to buy: Sold by Home Depot

Top Home Depot carpet cleaner for the money

Hoover PowerDash Go Portable Spot Cleaner

Hoover PowerDash Go Portable Spot Cleaner

What you need to know: This easy-to-use cleaner is perfect for spot cleaning or smaller carpeted areas.

What you’ll love: Lightweight and portable, this machine comes with two tanks, one for the cleaning solution and one for dirty water. It works well on upholstery and the interior of cars. Plus, it can tackle pet messes with ease. It also has a 14-foot-long cord. The solution tank holds .06 gallons and the collecting tank holds .09 gallons.

What you should consider: Since it’s just over 6 1/2 pounds, it can tip over fairly easily. It’s also not intended for larger spaces.

Where to buy: Sold by Home Depot

Worth checking out

Hoover Professional Series Spotless Portable Carpet Cleaner And Upholstery Spot Cleaner

Hoover Professional Series Spotless Portable Carpet Cleaner And Upholstery Spot Cleaner

What you need to know: This portable model can tackle any mess with ease, especially in smaller rooms.

What you’ll love: It comes with multipurpose tools to tackle different messes. It also comes with Self-Clean Technology that makes it easy to maintain the machine and reduces bacteria growth or dirt buildup. It has a 14-foot-long cord and two tanks.

What you should consider: The tanks are relatively small.

Where to buy: Sold by Home Depot

 

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Angela Watson writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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