BISSELL PowerLifter PowerBrush Review: Budget Carpet Cleaner for Under $100!

If live in a cold state, let’s say like Seattle, New York or Cleveland, chances are your home has carpet.

And over time it gets dirty – really, really dirty.

There are a few options. First would be just vacuuming and hope that doing this will prevent dirt from piling up. It’s a necessary step but a vacuum will never remove stains on carpet.

Second would be hiring a professional who’ll do it for you but it’ll cost a few hundred dollars at least.

Third option would be renting but you still have to buy cleaning solution. And of course there’s the hassle of bring the carpet cleaner to and from Lowes.

The fourth option I think is the best.

Why not buy your own carpet cleaner?

You may push back and say that’s expensive. I’m here to prove to you today that you don’t need to spend more than $100 for a decent carpet cleaner.

Let’s have a close look at the Bissell PowerLifter with the PowerBrush technology.

This is one of cheapest carpet cleaners available right now at just under $80!

Yes, you heard that right, it’s cheaper than other upright vacuums.

The bigger question is, is this worth your while?

Let’s find out in this review.

A quick look at the features

  • Has the “PowerLifter PowerBrush” that digs deep into carpet fibers to scrub and lift out stubborn stains
  • 3/4 gallon tank capacity
  • 2-in-1 water tank that holds both clean and dirty water
  • 11” cleaning path
  • 25 amp motor has enough suction to pick up dirt water residue
  • 20-foot power cord
  • Weighs 16.4 pounds
  • 1 year warranty


  • Compact design will work best in smaller homes
  • Light for a full sized carpet cleaner
  • Decent cleaning path at 11”
  • Cheaper than most carpet cleaners available right now


  • Small water tank means you’ll have to empty it often when cleaning a large room
  • Short power cord
  • Only comes with a 1 year warranty
  • No tools for cleaning upholstery

What to expect from the Bissell PowerLifter?

Bissell advertises this as a full sized cleaner so expect heavy duty performance from this. One thing that separates this from the likes of the Rug Doctor Mighty Pro X3 or the Bissell ProHeat 2X would be its size. This machine is one of the lightest and most compact carpet cleaners out there.

Lightweight Design

Whereas the Rug Doctor tips the scales at almost 50 pounds, this machine only weighs less than 17 pounds. In boxing terms, this is a lightweight when you put it side-by-side against other brands.

One downside to having such a lightweight machine is there will less power and capacity.

2-in-1 water tank

If you look at the larger carpet cleaning machines in the market right now, most if not all have 2 water tanks. There’s one for the water and cleaning solution and another for dirty water.

This can be a make or break feature for you because of the potential cross contamination issue of dirt water staying in the water tank even after you clean it.

The design of the water tank prevents you from fully disassembling it and cleaning every nook and cranny.

PowerLifter Brush

Despite being a smaller carpet cleaner, Bissell put in a rolling brush as opposed to a spinning brush.

This in my opinion is what makes this product a good option.

There’s no doubt in my mind that a rolling brush will deep clean better than the latter.

The bristles are stiffer and there’s more mass behind it that allows it to go deeper into carpet strands.

Six amp motor

Don’t let the small size fool you because this little carpet cleaner does pack a punch. To put things in perspective, the Bissell ProHeat 2X that cost well over $200 has a 6.8 amp motor and this comes with a 6 amp motor.

This means that you’ll have to expect the same type of performance between these two Bissell cleaners.

Though the ProHeat 2X does have 2 roller brushes so it’ll provide better agitation.

Power cord

Power cord is shorter than bigger carpet cleaners at just 20 feet.

No hose

Perhaps the biggest downside to this machine would be the omission of a hose and tools that’ll allow you to clean upholstery and such.

Not only will this not clean upholstery or stairs, you won’t be able to clean tight spots between furniture.

Cleaning performance

To show you how well this carpet cleaner does please watch this video…

For a compact carpet cleaner, this machine does a fairly decent job at picking up stains. Take note that if there are tough stains, you will need to pre-treat it will carpet cleaning solution prior to running this machine.

One big advantage that Bissell has over a Rug Doctor would be its ability to clean on both forward and backward passes. This feature will help you save time cleaning dirty carpet.

Product Specification

ModelBISSELL PowerLifter PowerBrush
Power6.25 amps
Cleaning path11"
Cord length20 feet
Hose lengthN/A
Water tank3/4 gal
Weight16.4 lbs.
Specialty toolsNone
Warranty1 year

What consumers say?

If you look at reviews, there’s no question that this machine performs. Over 2,300 folks in Amazon left feedback and most of them were positive with a lot of before and after photos that show the results.

Lots of people who left reviews have pets and say that this machine did well picking up pet stains and odor. It does not have a water heater so you’ll have to use hot tap water. Don’t use boiling water as it could damage the plastic container and deform it.

One common complaint would be the size of the water tank which is smaller than the Rug Doctor and Bissell ProHeat. This means more frequent trips to the bathroom to empty it. And you’ll also have to clean it well to remove any dirt water residue that could potentially go back into the carpet.

Agitation and power is another strong point because this machine was able to remove even tough stains.

You will have to use an upright vacuum prior to use this because this machine isn’t a vacuum cleaner but a carpet cleaner. I say this because I’ve read some comments stay pet hair wrapping around the brush. I repeat, this machine isn’t a vacuum cleaner, don’t use this as such.

There are also some complaints about quality control issues like prematurely belts that break and poor suction.

Where can I buy this?

This compact carpet cleaner is available in Amazon for less than $80. And it’ll be eligible for Amazon’s fee 2-day shipping if you join Prime. Extended warranties are also available of up to 3 years if you want that extra peace of mind.

To wrap up

Folks looking for a relatively lightweight carpet cleaner that won’t break the bank and back will love the Bissell PowerLifter. It weighs just 16 pounds but still has enough power to pick up tough stains on carpet.

One glaring omission would be the hose and tools for other areas like stairs and fabric upholstery. Another issue would be the combination 2-in-1 water tank that holds both clean and dirty water. If you don’t clean this well enough, there’s huge risk of dirty stuff going back into the carpet.

But at less than $80 this is a great value-for-money option that’ll work great in small homes. There’s no question that this machine will perform, the bigger question is if the shortcomings are big enough to deter you from buying this.