Bissell ProHeat Essential Review: Lightweight Carpet Cleaner for Smaller Homes

One of the toughest chores inside our homes would be cleaning carpet. Maintenance would entail diligent vacuuming and deep cleaning using a carpet cleaner.

You’ll have quite a few options for such. One would be buying a full sized carpet cleaner that’ll deep clean. But one big issue for these types of cleaners would be the weight.

For example, a Rug Doctor Might Pro tips the scales at close to 50 pounds. Moving this up and down and two-floor home will take some muscle.

Something more lightweight would be a better option if you have issues moving around something heavy. And the Bissell ProHeat Essential would be a great option if you’re looking for something lightweight.

This carpet cleaner weighs only 20 pounds – more than half less than a Rug Doctor.

Moving this up and down a flight of stairs will not be an issue.

But the more important question is how does this perform?

Is it worth the asking price of around $150 right now?

We’ll answer those questions and much more in this review.

A quick look at the features

  • Large capacity 1 gallon tank will require less trips to the sink to empty
  • Heatwave technology keeps water inside the tank at a constant temperature for better cleaning performance
  • 6 cleaning rows of bristles help this machine deep clean carpet
  • Comes with a couple of tools for cleaning upholstery and stairs
  • It also comes with an 8 ounce trial size Bissell cleaning formulate for you to try out
  • 2 year warranty
  • Weighs around 20 pounds
  • 6 amp motor
  • 11” cleaning path


  • Reasonable price for a carpet cleaner
  • Lightweight makes it easier to move around
  • Stiff roller brushes make this a decent carpet cleaner
  • Easy to remove water tank means this will be easy to empty


  • No separate tanks for dirty and clean water
  • Some complaints about suction not being as good

What to expect from the Bissell ProHeat Essential?

This carpet cleaner is a great option for small to medium size homes because of its size. If there is a plus for the 2-in-1 water tank, it would be the weight savings and smaller footprint.

Bissell is able to make this carpet cleaner smaller and lighter. You’ll have an easier time storing this machine inside a small home.

Power and Motor

Under the hood of this carpet cleaner is a 6 amp motor that powers both the roller brush and vacuum. Bissell says that this machine will remove stains, allergens and odor embedded in carpet.

One potential issue with the lack of weight this machine has is the amount of residue it can suck out.

A video review showed that this machine will not pick up the same amount of liquid as poured in.


One feature I like about the Bissell ProHeat Essential would be the availability of tools that allows it to clean upholstery and stairs.

This machine comes with 3 tools:

  • Spraying crevice tool
  • 3” tough stain tool
  • 6” stair tool

All these add-ons will help this machine rid of stains on carpet and upholstery. The spraying crevice tool is a great option for reaching tough spots in between cushions.

Heatwave technology

One interesting feature would be the Heatwave feature. Bissells says that this feature keeps water as a constant temperature during the cleaning cycle. I’m not sure how this works.

Technically this isn’t a water heater since the water tank is plastic and putting boiling water will deform the plastic.

So this could be just the machine blowing hot air over the carpet.

Roller brush

What makes this a very good carpet cleaner is the roller brush. It comes with 6 rows of stiff bristles that Bissell calls “PowerBrushes”. These bristles will have the ability to dig in and agitate carpet.

On both sides of the roller brush are springs that automatically adjust the height that allow this to work on different carpet pile.

One gallon tank

This machine comes with a one gallon tank that’ll hold enough dirty water residue from a small room without emptying it.

One downside would be the 2-in-1 design meaning this tank will hold clean and dirt water. Inside the tank is a rubber bladder that’ll hold the cleaning solution and water. This is the thing that keeps the dirty water residue from contaminating the cleaning solution.

The biggest issue with this setup would be longevity. Since it uses rubber, the chances of it prematurely breaking is higher than hard plastic.

Cleaning performance

Watch these videos to see how this carpet cleaner works…

Here’s how the 3” tough stain tool in action…

Consumers say that this machine works well at cleaning pet stains on carpet and stairs. It’ll also work well on rugs. But don’t expect it to perform as well as a full size carpet cleaner like a Rug Doctor. Biggest issue would be its ability to suck up excess water residue.

What consumers say about this?

Reviews were generally positive about the performance of this machine. A majority of consumers were pretty satisfied with how this machine cleaned their carpet saying that it had really good agitation.

Another popular feature of this machine would be the ProHeat system that they say keeps the water and cleaning solution warm. I must warn you though to avoid pouring in boiling water because it will destroy the rubber bladder inside it.

The rubber bladder is what separates the clean water from dirty water. And if this thing is broke, you’ll have the replace the whole water tank.

So technically this isn’t a steam cleaner per se. It’s more of a carpet agitator thanks to the stiff roller brush.

One issue consumers have would be the suction or lack thereof. Some say that it did not completely remove water residue on carpet. And you’ll need to put additional weight on it to get more out. Another issue with the bladder would be the difficulty of rinsing off cleaner.

There are also quality control issues that are quite common with products at this price range.

Where can I buy this?

You can buy the Bissell ProHeat Essential in Amazon for less than $140. And it’ll be eligible for the free 2-day shipping if you join Prime.

Amazon also sells extended warranties of up to 3 years if you want that extra peace of mind.

To wrap up

The Bissell ProHeat Essential is a great option if you’re looking for a mid-priced carpet cleaner that doesn’t weigh a ton. At just 20 pounds, you won’t have trouble carrying this up and down stairs. Just in case the single roller bar doesn’t provide enough agitation for you then have a look at the ProHeat 2X.

Don’t expect it to do as well as more expensive options like the Rug Doctor Mighty Pro or the Bissell Big Green but it won’t weigh as much.

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