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I have a 3000+ sq-feet two-story house and over the time the carpets upstairs and in the basement reach a point that cleaning is required. I looked around and eyed on these two products:

Given the price difference I can only presume the former is better, but the specs didn't tell too much why is that, except that it has longer power cord and much heavier.

I'd like to know if I indeed need a pro-grade cleaner? Does it do a better job, for example it's capable of cleaning really touch stains while the cheaper one can't?

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  • Are all 3000+ ft^2 carpeted? Also, do you have pets or anything that would contribute to the carpets getting more soiled than normal? – UnhandledExcepSean Dec 18 '17 at 16:33
  • only 2nd floor and basement. I don't have pets but have two underage boys. Milk or oily food could spoil the carpets. There was one time one of the boys urinated on it. – J.E.Y Dec 18 '17 at 16:59
  • How often do you really plan on using the cleaners? If it's only once a year, you might consider having a cleaning company come in and do it for you rather that storing a machine all year. – JPhi1618 Dec 18 '17 at 18:46
  • Is carpet cleaner hire not a thing in the USA? Here in .uk they are readily available from dry cleaning shops. Don't forget that the carpet will need to dry out after. – Andrew Morton Dec 19 '17 at 13:20
  • Home Depot/Lowes will rent you a carpet cleaner for half-day or all day. So will some independent vacuum shops and tool rental outfits. The same places sell soap for the cleaners. Have you ever tried to clean many sf of carpet? Before investing in either machine I suggest you rent the tools and do the job once. Afterwards you will have a better idea which tool is more suitable. And you won't have to buy it for months. Or you may decide you hate carpet cleaning and go with the pros next time. – Stanwood Jan 27 '18 at 4:03
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The "pro grade" machine is not. Pros do not use them, they use a much more powerful truck mounted vacuum and pump unit.

Either of those consumer grade machines will probably do a pretty good job at removing surface soil and stains. You should still have your carpet professionally cleaned at some frequency because degradation to the carpet happens down below the fibers, at the backing. A professional extractor (when maintained and operated by a reputable outfit) will do a better job at pulling up damaging sand and dirt.

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Personally, given those two options, the size of the area, and the children, I would go with the pro-grade (Bissell).

Why?

  1. Area: You plan to carpet clean a large area. The commercial/pro-grade carpet cleaners have an advantage here in their tank capacity which means fewer trips to fill and dump water.
  2. Warranty: Heavy duty items tend to have longer warranties because they are generally built to withstand more use. The Bissell's warranty is 5 years versus the 2 year Hoover.
  3. Satisfaction: The Bissell's overall review is a good deal better than the Hoover's.

Factors that might make you want the non-pro-grade cleaner instead:

  1. Weight: Pro-grade clears will be heavier than the regular cleaners. They normally have large wheels at the back so you can take them up steps, but that is not as convenient as a light weight model. So, if you have any sort of limitation in regards to lifting, the pro model may not be right for you.
  2. Cost: Pro-grade models are always more expensive up-front. In the long run, you hope it's cheaper, but warranties and product life are a bit of a gamble.

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