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Bissell Vac & Steam review - a hard floor specialist

Bissell Vac and Steam
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
132
inc. VAT (as of 25th May)

The Bissell Vac & Steam excels on hard floors but isn't a true all-rounder

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Specifications

Dimensions (HxWxD): 280x230x1181MM, Weight: 4.75Kg, Maximum reach: 7.9m, Water tank capacity: 0.38 litres, Warranty: Two year RTB, Part Code: 1132

The Bissell Vac & Steam aims to do the job of both a vacuum and a steam cleaner. With a bagless cylinder vacuum and steam mop all in a single device it could, in theory, save you money and save on storage space in your home. Of course, with any two-in-one there's always the worry that it won't be up to either job, when compared to dedicated devices. While we can't imagine the basic vacuum will impress on carpet, the combination is an intriguing one for those with hard floors throughout their homes.

Design

As it isn’t just a steam cleaner but also a vacuum, the Bissell Vac & Steam is unfortunately pretty heavy, weighing a hefty 4.75Kg. Thankfully it doesn’t take up a whole lot of space, with a relatively slim profile and small footprint. You wouldn’t have any trouble with storage either, as it can hold itself upright when clicked into its base, like any respectable upright vacuum. The height of the handle can also be adjusted too, so it will even fit into shorter understairs cupboards.

Bissell Vac and Steam

Unfortunately, the controls are a little awkwardly placed and oddly the buttons are labelled upside down. As they are placed on the angled handle, you can’t see them when you’re using it anyway, so you'll have to just get used to which is which by touch alone.

Cleaning performance

When cleaning I could continuously use steam for just under 20 minutes without having to fill the tank up again. This is thanks to the 0.38-litre tank capacity. The water in the tank doesn't get directly heated, which is why the cap doesn't lock in use, so you can top it up as you go, although you should be careful how you handle the unit while it's hot.

While Bissell says that the Vac & Steam can be used on carpets, I found it really tricky to use on such surfaces and it really wasn’t its strong point. There isn’t an included carpet glider either unlike the Vax Steam Fresh Power Plus, so if you want to clean and vacuum carpet, you have to remove the pad tray. Just using the vacuum function, though, the Vac & Steam is perfectly functional and gave some decent results cleaning baking powder and cat litter from different carpets. Suction power wasn’t exactly impressive though and often just pushed dirt around rather than sucking it up. It did scrape a bit along the carpets too, again thanks to the lack of a carpet glider.


Bissell Vac and Steam

Of course, this is no replacement for a dedicated vacuum cleaner, but having a vac/steam combo is great. Many steam cleaners do tend to just drag dirt along for the ride, so it’s nice to have the option to suck up the dirt while you clean.

The Bissell Vac & Steam really shines on hard flooring, as expected, with incredible results when compared to other steam mops of the same price. Cleaning up breakfast spills on hard tiles was straightforward - while also sucking up crumbs on the kitchen floor too. While it isn’t the best steam clean I've seen, that goes to the cheaper Vileda Steam Mop, it was pretty good. Breakfast spills took a few swipes but it was left sparkly in the end. The vacuum function can get in the way of cleaning, though, as the front brush collects dirt and can smear gloopier mess around.

Conclusion

The Bissell Vac & Steam is a good multi-function cleaner, which cleans much better than it sucks. The vacuum setting isn’t the greatest, with poor suction that tends to just push dirt around, but it is somewhat functional and provides a helping hand for the steam cleaning setting. Steaming was excellent, getting rid of some pretty tough stains on hard floors, but struggling on carpeted surfaces.


Bissell Vac and Steam

Its mediocre carpet-cleaning performace means the Bissell Vac & Steam isn't a genuine all-round choice. That said, it's actually one of the better Steam Mops we've seen and the addition of a vacuum makes it great for sucking up those inevitable dust bunnies that run wild on hard floors. If your home primarily consists of hard floors and you like the idea of a single device then this is a good buy. Pair it up with a handheld steam cleaner, such as the Bissell Steam Shot or Karcher SC1 and you'll be all set to give the house a top-to-bottom clean. Still not sure which is best for you? Read our Best steam cleaner 2016 guide

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Hardware
Dimensions (HxWxD)280x230x1181MM
Weight4.75Kg
Cable length7.6m
Maximum reach7.9m
Water tank capacity0.38 litres
Solution tank capacity (if any)N/A
SurfacesHard floors and carpets
Accessories2 x fabric steamer cloths, pouring jug and 2x fragrance discs
Power and capacity
Heat-up time wattage0.05Kwh
Wattage during use0.14Kwh
Heat-up time0:00:32
Steaming time0:19:32
Buying information
WarrantyTwo year RTB
Detailswww.bisselldirect.co.uk
Part Code1132

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