One of my pet peeves for upright vacuums is the lack of versatility.
Yes it will be able to deep clean but you won’t be able to use it other than floors.
If you’d want to clean upholstery or stairs, you’d have to buy another machine for that.
It would be nice if more manufacturers follow suite and release cleaners with a “Lift” feature just to give consumer the option to use it as a canister.
Bissell has finally joined Shark and created an upright vacuum that morphs into a canister vacuum.
It is a bulky machine however – in upright mode it weighs around 16 pounds.
This is the top of the line feature that comes with the mini motorized attachment to clean pet hair off upholstery.
Let’s see how it performs where it matters most – inside consumer’s homes.
Features at a glance
- Has the “Lift Off” feature that transforms this from an upright to a canister
- Include 2 onboard tools – (1) Crevice and (2) Pet Turbo Eraser Tool
- Handle is adjustable (has two settings) to suit the height of different users and for storage purposes
- Has swivel steering
- 5 year warranty
- Multi-level filtration keeps dirt where it needs to be – inside the bin
- Washable filters lessens running costs
- Long 5 year warranty
- Very affordable for a vacuum with this long a warranty and a Lift Away feature
- Pre and post motor filters keep more of the dirt inside the dirt cup
- Decent power cord length at 27 feet
- Designed to clean pet hair
- Very good performance especially on carpet
- Pet hair tool is efficient in cleaning pet hair
- Even though Bissell says it’s lightweight, it still weighs 16 pounds
- Short hose limits reach
- Does not include an extension wand
- No cord rewind
- If you tap the dirt bin hard enough there is a risk of the cover falling on the floor
- Does not swivel very well
- When you take off the canister it feels heavy compared to the Shark
What to expect from the BISSELL PowerGlide Pet?
Bissell calls this a “lightweight” vacuum but it still weights 16 pounds.
When you compare it to one of its rivals – the Shark Navigator, this still outweighs it by 3 pounds.
It may not sound a lot on paper but that weight adds up when you carry this on a flight of stairs.
But when you compare it to the class heavyweights like a Dyson DC41 that weighs over 20 pounds, it does feel a little bit light.
One of the best features is the Lift-Off feature that allows users to remove the canister from the upright base, transforming this to a canister vacuum.
Watch this video to see the different features and how it performs.
Make sure to watch the whole video because to see the cleaning demo on bare floor and carpet.
You’ll get a glimpse on how to clean the brush roll, filter performance and much more…
This will allow you to use this on carpeted stairs and upholstery – a near impossible task with a traditional upright design.
Tools you’ll get
However, it only comes with 2 tools – the long crevice tool and the pet hair mini brush. It does not have any extension wand included so reach will not be as much as a Shark Navigator Lift Away.
It does have a brush roll on/off feature that helps with cleaning performance on carpet. Here’s how the brush roll looks like.
Image courtesy of Colin West from CNet.
You’ll notice that the brush is wide and has air channels that on both sides allow suction to pass through even on the side of the cleaner head. This, in turn, results to better edge cleaning – one of the downsides of the Shark Navigator.
There is storage at the back for the crevice and mini motorized brush.
Lastly here’s how the pet turbo eraser tool looks like.
Image courtesy of Colin West from CNet.
A weird design that uses rubber flaps instead of bristles that performs surprisingly well based on reviews.
Bare Floor Performance
Based on a test done by CNet that compared different upright vacuums side by side such as the Electrolux Precision Brushroll Clean, Oreck One Touch, Dyson DC41, Shark Rotator Lift Away, Eureka AS1104A SectionSeal Pet, Dyson DC50 Animal and Dyson DC40 Origin, the PowerGlid Pet Bagless surprising held its own even against more expensive brands like the Dyson.
On the hardwood, it ranked around the middle of the pack when it came to cleaning up 2 ounces of cheerios – picking up 83 percent. But it did still managed to beat more expensive machines like the Shark Rotator Lift-Away and the Dyson DC50.
When it came to cleaning up sawdust, it scored one of the highest of the group picking up a whopping 99% of the 2.5 ounces of sawdust scattered on hardwood again beating more expensive brands like Electrolux, Shark, and Dyson.
If it had an Achilles heel, it would be cleaning pet hair on hardwood.
Pet hair would still wrap up on the motorized brush.
Here’s another cleaning test done by a VBlogger Ibaisaic. He scattered loads of debris that include dust bunnies, hair, couscous, all sorts of stuff you’ll clean inside the house.
After one back and forth pass…
The results are impressive because even without the brush roll, it was able to pick up all of the dirt. This includes dirt over the grout area.
There was a little bit of snow plowing with the larger particles of dirt.
To recap the performance on the carpet – it picked up more cheerios on mid pile carpet than the DC40, DC50 and the Shark Pro Lift Away, all three brands are a few hundred dollar more expensive!
It picked up more sawdust on mid and low pile carpet compared to the DC50, DC40 Origin and DC41 Animal.
To see an actual head to head test, watch this video comparing the performance of the Bissell vs the Shark Navigator.
Bissell was able to pick up pretty much everything, even large sized debris without plowing it. The Shark Navigator didn’t do as well – at least in this test.
Here’s another cleaning test, this time done by Ibaisaic on carpet. It’s a big pile of mess that includes hair, couscous, dust bunnies, dust, etc.
After one pass, here’s the result…
Not bad for a single back and forth pass. But what you don’t see in the photo are bits of couscous.
There are also two lines that represent the brush guard. Agitation is excellent with the aggressive brush roll design having its own motor.
Here’s a closeup shot of debris bouncing up due to the sheer agitation from the brush…
The agitation is so good that it cleaned up almost every crumb of dirt scattered on the floor.
There were some stray couscous left but it was able to clean almost everything.
But biggest weakness of this Bissell would be filtration, just look at the filter.
This is a potential deal-breaker if you have allergies. Like many budget upright vacuums, it does not have a sealed system so allergens and dust will seep through the exhaust.
Despite the weird design of the mini motorized tool, did well not only picking up pet hair but also other types of debris on upholstery. The use of flaps instead of bristles lessens the maintenance work in terms of the need of removing dust bunnies or hair from it.
It also comes with a long reach crevice tool if you need to reach deeper into tight crevices.
Pet Hair Removal
Again, referencing the CNet test, the PowerGlide performed well picking up all of the 2.5 ounce pet hair scattered on medium and low pile carpet, a big reason for which is the stiff brushes on the motorized brush. It did struggle though picking up pet hair on hard floor.
Attachments and Accessories
It only comes with a couple – the crevice and the pet turbo eraser tool.
It has a 27 foot power cord but it does not have cord rewind.
Filter Clean up
There are two filters in this machine. The main filter is at the bottom of the canister. There are two pieces of foam that you’ll see, both are washable.
A second filter is located at the motor. This is called a post-motor filter. The post-motor filter isn’t washable.
If it becomes dirty remove it then tap on a garbage bin to dislodge any dirt but you’ll need to replace it once it becomes too dirty.
To see how to access these filters, watch this video plus other maintenance tips.
This machine does not have HEPA filtration.
Like the Dyson and Shark, it comes with a 5 year warranty
Pet TurboEraser® Tool
|Cord Length||27 feet|
|Auto Cord Rewind|
|Brush on/off switch|
|Filter clogged indicator|
|Full bin indicator||
Dirt container is transparent so you can see if it's full
|Net weight||16 pounds|
|Shipping weight||22.2 pounds|
|Hose length||6.5 feet|
|Dirt capacity||1 liter|
|Filter type||2 Filters - pre-motor and post-motor.|
See it in Action
Logan from VacBin shares the features, how it performs in carpet, what he likes and does not like.
Consumers were happy with the performance on bare floor and carpet.
Though it had less suction, the agitation of the motorized brush enables it to pick up more dirt on carpet than a Dyson (the older models like the DC28 to be more specific).
Has a tool that works well with pet hair
The pet turbo brush also did well in terms of cleaning up pet hair on upholstery and stairs.
On bare floor it also did well, surprisingly in contrast to what the review of CNet said about this struggling with picking up pet hair on bare floor – it was opposite in the reviews in Amazon. Consumers were saying that it was effective in picking up pet hair on bare floor.
It wasn’t all roses and peaches though, there were some features that Bissell should think about improving to better their upright vacuum. First, the hose is short. Bissell didn’t specify how long it is. But CNET says that it was 6.5 feet long.
Second, the power cord could be a 3 to 4 feet longer – again this is in the wish list of consumers.
Third, remember in the video review of Logan from VacBin?
He said to be careful when tapping the side of the dirt canister because the bottom may fall out. Well, one consumer noticed the same thing when he was emptying it, when he tapped the side the bottom fell out which created a big mess. This may be a design flaw so this is just a heads up.
Swivel steering not as good as a Dyson
The swivel steering drew mixed reviews, some say it was easy to steer while others say it was hard and wasn’t as nimble as the Dyson.
Overall based on the consumer reviews I’ve read, this vacuum is a great and cheaper alternative to the Dyson upright or Shark Professional Lift-Away if budget is a concern.
But remember that this machine will not swivel like the Dyson and won’t be as light in canister mode as the Shark.
Where can I buy this?
You can buy this right now in Amazon for less than $180 and it comes with free shipping. Avail of the 2-day free shipping when you sign up for Amazon Prime (yes even if it’s for the free trial).
There’s also an optional extended warranty (up to 3 years) if you want that extra peace of mind.
To Wrap Up
This machine is a great alternative to the more expensive Shark Rotator Professional Lift Away that offers better cleaning performance on carpet based on reviews.
It lacks a swivel feature found in the Shark so maneuverability suffers a bit in upright mode.
The extension wand I feel lacks in terms of length so reach isn’t as good as a Shark Rotator but the Bissell is cheaper so if this isn’t a deal-breaker, it is a good deal.
You’ll have to remember that this vacuum is close to $100 cheaper so if budget is a concern this may be the upright for you.
Great for medium to large homes
If you have a medium to large home with a mixture of carpet and bare floor, this machine would work well.
It will also do an excellent job cleaning pet hair as both the brushes on the main cleaning tool and the mini turbo brush performed well in picking up pet hair on carpet but it does struggle cleaning pet hair on bare floor so keep that in mind.
Overall, this machine is a good option if you don’t have $200 to $300 to spend on a good upright that is capable of cleaning upholstery as well.
Budget Upright That Will Clean Carpet Well
Ergonomics - 92%
Surface Cleaning - 95%
Quality - 85%
Design - 84%
Value - 88%
Folks who want a less costly upright should have a look at the Bissell PowerGlide 2763 because it is capable of cleaning carpet and bare floor well. It will do well at cleaning small to medium-sized dirt but will struggle with large ones because of its low clearance. Being a budget option, don’t expect much in terms of filtration as fine dust and allergens will come back out. If you have allergies, you may want to spend more and go with an upright with a sealed system such as the Shark Rotator NV752.