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Old 05-22-2011, 10:58 AM
 
2,186 posts, read 7,529,148 times

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This machine cleans as well as the larger models, but at $99.99 it's much less expensive. It weighs under 20 pounds, so it's lightweight enough to carry upstairs without hurting your back. It also can access hard-to-reach areas that a larger model cannot.

The vacuum head cleans an 9 inch path. The cord spans 20 feet. There are two tanks: one for the clean water, and one for the dirt-filled residue. You'll be amazed at the gunk that comes out of a freshly vacuumed carpet. The Quicksteamer has a 'Powerbrush' that rotates, uprooting dirt and debris. To use the carpet steamer, the 1/2 gallon tank is filled with a combination of clean water and special cleaning formula.

There is a separate spray bottle of pre-treatment formula for heavy-traffic areas or those that are especially soiled. The refills of cleaning solution and replacement parts are fairly inexpensive.

The machine can be turned on and off with foot pedals, avoiding the need to bend down - once again, a back saving device.

The residue that comes off the carpet is thick, so you might want to put it down the toilet instead of dumping it in the sink, where it may clog the drain.

It's best to do a thorough vacuum beforehand, especially if there is pet hair on the carpet. This machine won't suck up fine pet hair, but will cause it to collect in clumps. The clumps are easy to pick up at that point, but it's another step.

It's important to clean out the dirty water tank after each use, and also rinse out the brush. Otherwise, the crud will cake on and be much more difficult to remove later. Plus, the stagnant water can begin to smell over time.

It's important to advance slowly when using the machine, both when laying down the 'steam' and when vacuuming it back up. For the first step, your carpet will be cleaner, and for the second, it will dry more quickly. It's easy to see when all the water has been vacuumed up, because you can see it going into the dirty water tank.

Even though the machine has the word 'steam' in the title, you actually are supposed to put hot water in. Perhaps to keep the weight and price down, the machine doesn't heat the water for you, like other Bissell models. It's possible to use a cleaning solution besides the one that comes with this machine. That's especially important if you want to use a product that's completely environmentally friendly or fragrance free. Of course, be sure and test your carpet for color fastness beforehand.

Overall, this is a fantastic value for the price. While it doesn't provide the same level of cleaning as a professional service, the machine is ideal for regular maintenance.
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