Get the Finder app 🥳

Connect your accounts & save

Carpet shampooer buying guide: Compare models from Bissell, Rug Doctor, Britex, Wertheim and more

What you should consider before buying a carpet shampooer.


Fact checked
Picture not described

Quick facts about carpet shampooer:

  • Carpet shampooers can help give your carpet a much-needed deep clean and get it looking as good as new.
  • Buying a carpet shampooer isn't cheap. Basic models start at $100 and prices can go up to $1,000 or more. If you only need to clean your carpet once – for example, if you have an upcoming rental inspection – it may be more cost effective to hire a carpet shampooer or book a professional cleaning

What is a carpet shampooer?

Carpet shampooers are home appliances designed to deeply clean your floors. They are more effective at cleaning than vacuuming, as they wash out the dirt embedded deep within the carpet, not just the particles resting on top.

Carpet shampooers use water, concentrated detergent and suction to whip up a lathered foam that breaks down dirt particles residing in carpets.

Compare some of the best carpet shampooers

Data obtained January 2019. Prices are subject to change and should be used only as a general guide.
Name Product Average Price (AUD) Weight (kg) Power Cord Length (meters) Tank Capacity (L) Warranty Power (watts) Purchase Today
Bissell Spot Clean 36984
Bissell Spot Clean 36984
Limited 2 year
The Bissell Spot Clean 36984 is a handheld spot cleaner that works on upholstery as well as carpets.
Bissell TurboClean PowerBrush 2222F
Bissell TurboClean PowerBrush 2222F
Limited 2 year
The Bissell TurboClean PowerBrush 2222F is fitted with a detachable nozzle that can easily be removed and cleaned.
Vax Spinscrub Pet Carpet Cleaner VX5
Vax Spinscrub Pet Carpet Cleaner VX5
2 years
The Vax Spinscrub Pet Carpet Cleaner VX5 offers vacuum, wet vacuum and carpet cleaner function settings.
Hoover FloorMate Deluxe
Hoover FloorMate Deluxe
1 year
The Hoover FloorMate Deluxe is designed for hard flooring including laminated wood and bathroom tiling.
Rug Doctor Deep Carpet Cleaner 93170
Rug Doctor Deep Carpet Cleaner 93170
2 year limited
The Rug Doctor Deep Carpet Cleaner 93170 is equipped with a collapsible handle for easy storage.
Hoover Gladiator Twin Tank Carpet Shampooer
Hoover Gladiator Twin Tank Carpet Shampooer
2 year
The Hoover Gladiator Twin Tank Carpet Shampooer comes with a full accessory set and a two year warranty.
Bissell CleanView Lift Off 1190F
Bissell CleanView Lift Off 1190F
Limited 2 year
The Bissell CleanView Lift Off 1190F comes with upholstery and crevice cleaning attachments.
Wertheim SE9500 Animal Pro Carpet Shampooer
Wertheim SE9500 Animal Pro Carpet Shampooer
2 years
The Wertheim SE9500 Animal Pro Carpet Shampooer is designed specifically for carpets that have pet-related stains and odours.
Britex Carpet Cleaning Machine BR-11
Britex Carpet Cleaning Machine BR-11
1 year
The Britex Carpet Cleaning Machine BR-11 has a large tank capacity and includes an upholstery attachment.
Rug Doctor X3
Rug Doctor X3
1 year
The Rug Doctor X3 has a large tank capacity designed for domestic and commercial settings.

Compare up to 4 providers

Pros and cons

The benefits of using a carpet shampooer include:

  • A deeper clean. Carpet shampooers provide a deeper clean than vacuum cleaners. Vacuums only tackle the surface of the carpet, while carpet shampooers wash and clean down to the bottoms of each thread. Shampooing is the most effective way to remove the dirt particles that are trapped inside the carpet.
  • Special occasions. Carpet shampooers can be used to thoroughly clean after a party or before an upcoming rental inspection or auction.
  • Versatility. Some carpet shampooers come with attachments that allow you to clean upholstered furniture or hardwood floors and tackle tough spot stains.

There are also some drawbacks to carpet shampooers, including:

  • Cost. Carpet shampooers are not cheap. If you're only going to use it once or twice, a shampooer is probably not worth the cost.
  • Lack of maneuverability. Carpet shampooers can be heavy to carry and cumbersome to move. If you have mobility problems or a home with lots of stairs, doing your own carpet shampooing might not be the best idea.
  • Spot stains. Carpet shampooing can give new life to your carpet. However, it may not be able to completely remove that red wine stain from 10 years ago. Spot stains are best tackled at the moment they occur. For more information, check out our guide to carpet stain removers.

Should I buy, hire or use a professional service?

There are three ways to get your carpet shampooed: Buy a shampooer, hire or rent a shampooer or book a professional carpet cleaning service. Compare your options below:

  • Flexibility to clean whenever you want.
  • You can go over different areas at different times.
  • Regular cleaning can prolong the life of your carpet.
  • Costly.
  • Requires manual labour.
  • Can be bulky to store.
  • Basic models start at around $100.
  • High-end models can be $1,000 or more.
  • Affordable.
  • Doesn't require storage.
  • Useful for one-off events including rental inspections.
  • Limited usage time.
  • Laborsome.
  • May not be available when you need it.
  • Prices start at around $35/per day for 24 or 48-hour periods.
  • A deposit is usually required, although the amount varies depending on the hire company.
  • Will typically give you the most efficient cleaning.
  • No manual labour required.
  • Useful for one-off events including rental inspections.
  • The most expensive option for one-time use.
  • You'll have to work around the cleaner's schedule.
  • Many companies charge per room.
  • Prices typically range from $20-$70 per room.

What types are available?

You can choose between two main types of carpet shampooers: upright shampooers and spot cleaners.

  • Upright shampooers. A more affordable alternative to professional cleaning, these carpet shampooers are designed for deep cleaning as well as removing dirt and odours. They use a motorised brush to lift dirt from your carpet and have attachments to help you clean hard-to-reach spots.
  • Spot cleaners. Spot cleaners are suitable for specific small areas with tough stains. They are not designed to clean large areas all at once. These handheld devices are compact, light and much easier to store than upright shampooers.
Wet and dry vacuum cleaners vs carpet shampooers

Unlike carpet shampooers, wet and dry vacuum cleaners are designed to clean up liquid spills that have just occurred. If you want to clean a carpet that has accumulated and absorbed dirt over time, a wet and dry vacuum won't provide the deep clean you are looking for.

How to compare carpet shampooers

The right carpet shampooer for you will depend on how often you plan to use it and where you plan to use it. When purchasing or hiring a carpet shampooer, consider the following features:

Tank capacity

Carpet shampooers are generally fitted with two water tanks, one for clean water and one for dirty water. The shampooer pushes out clean water mixed with the detergent, then sucks it back up into the dirty tank. You'll have to keep refilling the clean tank and emptying the dirty one as you go. Having a large tank means you'll have to refill it less often, but will involve moving around a heavier piece of equipment.

Cord length

The longer the cord, the more maneuverability you have. Look for a cord that is long enough to ensure that you won't have to change power points every ten minutes.


Empty carpet shampooers can weigh anywhere from 5kg to 20kg before you add the water. If your home has a lot of stairs, you may want to consider a lighter model with a smaller tank.


Most carpet shampooers are loud. A pair of earmuffs or headphones can help you use your shampooer without damaging your hearing. Keep your neighbours in mind when deciding what time of day would be best to use your carpet shampooer.


Carpet shampooers can come with accessories for different uses, such as:

  • Furniture
  • Upholstery
  • Spot stains
  • Timber flooring


Check the length of the manufacturer's warranty to find out how long it is and exactly what it covers.

Cleaning solution

Most carpet shampooers come with a small sample of cleaning solution or a recommendation for which solution to buy. If you buy your own cleaning solution, you can choose a formula specifically designed to tackle any carpet issues you have, such as pet smells and tough stains. However, be sure to read the manufacturer's instructions, as using a non-recommended solution can void your carpet shampooer's warranty.

If you hire a carpet shampooer, you might also need to purchase an anti-foamer or defoamer. Check with your hire company to see if these will be included.

How to use a carpet shampooer

Most products have a trigger or switch that releases the detergent solution into the carpet. After you release the cleaning solution, move the cleaning brush over the dirty area, to help the water seep into the carpet. Next, activate the suction mode, which dries the carpet and removes the cleaning solution. Most manufacturers suggest going over each area of carpet at least twice to make sure all of the solution has been removed.

Top tips for effective cleaning:

  1. Patch test. Go over a small area of carpet to test that your settings are correct. It's better to realise something is wrong at the start than after you've finished your first room.
  2. Don't use too much solution. When you're using the trigger to release the detergent solution, it is better to use a "less is more" approach. If you add too much shampoo, it can sit in the carpet long after you've finished cleaning.
  3. Add water. If you're worried you've over shampooed, you can go over areas with a tank of clean water. This will provide an extra rinse for your carpet.
  4. Vacuum. Once your carpet has dried, go over it with a vacuum cleaner to pick up any leftover particles that the shampooer has brought to the surface.

How long will my carpet be wet after shampooing?

Drying times vary, depending on the manufacturer and the individual conditions. Some manufacturers suggest that your carpet will be dry in as a little as two hours, while others say it make take six hours or more to dry completely.

However, there are some steps you can take to quicken drying times, including going over the carpet multiple times with the suction. If you clean your carpets on a hot day or use fans to circulate more air, your carpets will also dry more quickly.

Where can I find a carpet shampooer?

You can buy carpet shampooers online or in store. The following retailers stock carpet shampooers or offer them for hire:

Related Posts

Ask an Expert

You are about to post a question on

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

Finder only provides general advice and factual information, so consider your own circumstances, or seek advice before you decide to act on our content. By submitting a question, you're accepting our Terms of Use, Disclaimer & Privacy Policy and Privacy & Cookies Policy.
Ask a question
Go to site