This spot cleaner has saved me hundreds – it's a game-changer for cleaning and so satisfying to use

Staggering before and after photos show the unbelievable power of the Bissell SpotClean Pro Heat

Bissell SpotClean
(Image credit: BISSELL)
Woman & Home Verdict

This portable carpet and upholstery spot cleaner works wonders, particularly on soft furnishings. It's less effective on less porous materials, however I still saw significant differences. A powerful little machine that will have you actively looking for things to clean.

Reasons to buy
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    Amazing power

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    Easy to use and clean

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    Includes cleaning fluid

Reasons to avoid
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    Not as effective on certain materials/surfaces

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I often get caught out scrolling through social media and seeing cleaning before and afters – the sense of satisfaction from seeing something turn from awful to like new again is too much to avoid. But I'd yet to experience it first hand, until now. Having three young children and a small Jack Russell, you can imagine how filthy rugs and upholstery can get in my house. Muddy feet and footprints, sticky hands, toilet accidents - human and canine - all add up to a serious amount of grime. So I had plenty of items to put the Bissell SpotClean to the test with. 

I'm looking to redecorate my dining room, and thought there was no way I could keep the rug we currently have in there. While it shows zero signs of fraying or wear, the very obvious dirt, I was sure, would never be able to be cleaned to a point where I'd be happy to keep it in a sparkly new room. I also have an absolutely filthy foot stool, which I've been looking to re-upholster. 

But before replacing anything, I decided, after reading rave reviews and seeing it in the Amazon sale, to try the Bissell SpotClean, to see if it could save myself some money (and my, frankly disgusting, furniture). And it was one of the best purchasing decisions I have ever made. It cleaned both better than I ever could have imagined, so much so, they are now firmly staying put – which has saved me hundreds. 

Bissell SpotClean review: Setting up & use

On first glance, there's what seems like a lot of pieces to this machine, which I was little confused by. However the instructions are easy to follow, and the parts are mostly to help secure the hose and power cable when not in use. 

There are clear lines on the container for clear water, to help you correctly measure water and formula. Depending on the size of the area you need to clean, you can add just a little for small spillages or fill almost the entire tank for larger spaces, like I did for my rug, for instance. 

Bisell SpotClean container and fluid

The cleaner comes with formula included, and clear lines indicating how much water and formula should be added

(Image credit: Future)

Then you simply plug in, press the on switch and it's ready to use. A small trigger under the main handle dispenses the water, which Bissell advises to do first, leave for 5 minutes to let the formula work into the surface, and then apply pressure to the handle to suck up the loose dirt. 

And this is the part that's addictive. I took a really old foot stool, which was actually waiting to either thrown out or re-upholstered, and tested the SpotClean on it. I was holding out much hope, as you can see, it was filthy. But I can't believe the difference now. I went over the material twice with the SpotClean, but the difference it made after just one go was incredible, particularly when you consider just how filthy it was to start with. 

The more pressure you apply, the more water and dirt is sucked out of the surface, and I took great pleasure in bringing this previously unused item back to life. That said, the placement of the trigger that dispenses the water in the first place I found got in the way sometimes. I would be trying to pull the water out, but without realising, be holding the nozzle with two hands to apply more pressure and mistakingly activating the trigger at the same time. 

I tried the SpotClean on two main areas of my home that needed it the most – the footstool and sofa, and rug used in the hallway (which gets battered by my three kids and usually very muddy Jack Russell). The material and texture on the rug is very different to that of my sofa and foot stool, so I was interested to see how it dealt with such a tightly packed material. I definitely had to leave the formula for longer and brush (on the white bits especially) to help remove the dirt. And it the cleaner didn't suck the water up anywhere near as well as it had on the foot stool. But my goodness, the difference was, again, instantaneous. 

Bissell SpotClean review: Cleaning

Cleaning the SpotClean couldn't be easier. The transparent cover on the nozzle can be removed so it can be washed and the nozzle itself detaches from the main hose, so you can give the bristles of the brush a good clean and the end part of the pipe a good flush through. 

The containers are also really easy to clean. The bottom of the one that collects the dirt has a cap you can simply twist and remove to empty the water, although be careful when removing as the holes that the water gets pulled through will let a little out if you're not quick. 

You can then fill with hot soapy water to clean thoroughly. The machine itself then has attachments with mean you can wind both the power cable and hose around it, keeping it safe and tidy. 

Bissell SpotClean review: Verdict

If you have pets, or kids or both, this machine is a must-have. Not only does it do an amazing job at cleaning, it's the most satisfying, therapeutic cleaning task I have ever done. And I never thought I would say that about housework. I found myself actively seeking out stains and spillages so I could use it over and over. 

The main downside to this nifty little device is the noise - it's so loud. Even more so, I would say, than our vacuum cleaner, which means I can't use it in the evenings after the kids are in bed, or in a different room to them during the day as I simply can't hear over it. But for the results it delivers this is a minor inconvenience. 

Next I'll be trying it on my car seat upholstery (also taken a battering from the kids), so stay tuned for the next update (and no doubt very satisfying before and after photos). 

Kerrie Hughes

Kerrie is the editor of woman&home (digital). For seven years previously she was editor of Future’s world-leading design title Creative Bloq, and has written for titles including T3, Coach and Fit&Well on a wide range of lifestyle topics.


After a decade of working in retail, Kerrie went back to education at the ripe old age of 27, graduating with a first-class honours degree in creative writing three years later. Her career in journalism began soon after, when she secured a job as a staff writer at Future Plc. In the 14 years since, she has worked her way up to editor level, gaining a wealth of digital experience along the way.

As a woman&home reader and a senior digital editor, Kerrie’s main purpose is to ensure the brand delivers high-quality, relevant content to help enrich and improve women’s lives – a responsibility she feels hugely passionate about.  

Outside of work, if she manages to find a spare minute around her three young children, geriatric dog and activity-obsessed fiance, you’ll find her either throwing a barbell about at Crossfit, with her head in a good thriller novel or building one of the latest Lego ideas sets.