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Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine 86T3/ 86T3Q Review

Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine 86T3

The Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine 86T3/86T3Q is a professional grade carpet cleaning machine that has created a great deal of excitement since it’s introduction in Oct 2010. Through the last few years, it has built up a legion of fans who attest to the high quality cleaning results and solid workmanship of the machine.

We will take a closer look at the details in this review, by looking into the features and benefits of the machine, how it performs, as well as comparisons with other top-rated carpet shampoo machines.

Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine 86T3/86T3Q Features & Benefits

Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine 86T3 side viewCleans Better Than The Leading Rental Carpet Cleaner – According to Bissell’s testing, this machine cleans better than the leading rental carpet cleaner machine. This assertion is supported by many user reviews, from users who say that they have gotten better results from the Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine as compared to the Rug Doctor, or the Hoover SteamVac. There are more details on comparison results further down the page.

Rotating DirtLifter® Powerbrushes – The Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaning machine uses Bissell’s patented DirtLifter power brushing technology to ensure that the entrenched grime and dirt on carpets are loosened and lifted out of the carpet fibers. This removes deep down stain particles, debris and other dirt.

Forward & Backward Cleaning with Drying Efficiency – The cleaner will clean on both forward and backward passes. This reduces the time taken to clean. At the same time, it does not compromise on the suction and drying time. Most carpet cleaning machines will clean only in direction, either on the forward or backward stroke.

Adjustable Tank Handle – The adjustable tank handle on the machine allows users to select a suitable height for handling the machine. This ensures that users are comfortable while cleaning. It helps to ensure that the Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaning machine remains easy to maneuver and push around despite it’s weight.

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10.5″ Cleaning Path – The cleaning path 10.5″ is fairly standard for a home carpet cleaning machine.

Use Hot Water For Better Cleaning – The machine allows for the use of hot water to steam clean carpets, as hot water can remove dirt better. “Steam carpet cleaning” is actually a misnomer. There is no actual steam involved. You just add hot water to the tank. It’s the same for all industry leading carpet machines, even industrial grade ones.

Separate Clean & Dirty Water Tanks – This ensures that filling and emptying tanks is easy to do. It is also a welcome departure from Bissell’s single tank system used in their regular grade carpet cleaners. A lot of users have expressed a preference for a two-tank system, saying that it is easier to use and more hygienic.

Large Tank Capacity – The clean water tank takes 1.75 gallons of water. This is a lot bigger compared to 1 gallon for most regular grade cleaners, and therefore saves users time in refilling. It is smaller than the 3 gallon capacity of the Rug Doctor Mighty Pro X3. However, a number of users have commented that it works better than the Rug Doctor in terms of cleaning efficiency. The means that it uses less water to clean up more carpet area. It also avoids the problems users have fitting the Rug Doctor’s large tank into the sink for filling up.

Flow Indicator – An easy-to-see indicator to monitor the water tank levels and change them out if necessary. It makes it really quick and easy to check on the tank water levels while cleaning.

9 foot hose & 6″ Stair/ Stain Tool – An extendable hose and handtool attachment for cleaning stairs, upholstery, and stains, or for hard to reach areas.

Long 25 ft Cord Length – Users enjoy the long 25 ft cord length as it means less plugging and unplugging as they do their cleaning.

5-Year Limited Warranty – Longer than the typical 1 or 2 year warranty for regular home carpet cleaners. However, buyers are also paying a lot more, so this is in line with buyer expectations.


Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine 86T3/86T3Q Review

Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine 86T3/ 86T3Q cleaning power

According to Bissell, their Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine 86T3 outcleans the leading rental machines. (Image source/credit: Bissell)

Excellent Cleaning Results

According to users who have tried top-rated machines like the Hoover Power Scrub Deluxe, Hoover SteamVac with Clean Surge or the Rug Doctor, the cleaning results of the Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine 86T3 beats them out. The cleaning results are also reported to be superior to that of Bissell’s leading regular-grade upright carpet cleaner, the Bissell ProHeat 2X.

The cleaning results have been variously described as such:

  • cleans pet stains out “like a champ”
  • cleans better than the Hoover Power Scrub or SteamVac
  • removed more dirt out than previous carpet cleanings, including using the Rug Doctor and professional cleaning services
  • got cat vomit stains out
  • a “serious tool” for getting the carpet cleaning done right the first time

More user reviews from customers comparing the Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine 86T3 with other machines:

This Amazon customer experienced problems with regular grade upright cleaner machines, including the Hoover Power Scrub. He switched to the Bissell Big Green 86T3 and found that the carpet became much whiter than the results he experienced cleaning with other machines. He also liked that machine is well-built. Although this cleaner is more costly, he said it is “totally worth” its price. Read more here >

Another Amazon customer tried the Bissell Proheat 2X Revolution and did not like the suction. In comparison, the reviewer described the suction on the Bissell Big Green 86T3 as “incredible.” This detailed customer review includes many helpful pointers for serious shoppers. Read more here >

Cleaning Comparisons With Top Rated Carpet Cleaning Machines

The observations that the Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine cleans better than regular grade upright carpet cleaning machines like the Hoover SteamVac or Hoover Carpet Basics Power Scrub may not be surprising, considering it is a commercial grade machine that is designed to be better and costs a lot more. The superior cleaning performance is most obvious for dirtier carpets, where the Big Green machine demonstrates an ability to brush deeper and more thoroughly to clear out the stains and dirt.

What’s notable is that quite a number of users reported better results from the Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine as compared to their results with the Rug Doctor. For decades, the Rug Doctor was the only commercial grade machine available to home users for use and purchase. Now, home users are presented to another outstanding and possibly better choice. Bissell’s own test results also alludes to the fact that their machine is better. As one user puts it, this machine is a step up from the Rug Doctor.

Need more proof about the cleaning effectiveness of the Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine 86T3/86T3Q? Check out this video comparison of Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine Vs Rug Doctor Mighty Pro

Large Water Tank

A large sized water tank allows for more cleaning to be completed for each time that users fill up the water tank. This saves a lot of time and hassle. The Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine has a water tank capacity of 1.75 gallons, which is much bigger than the 1 gallon water tanks found in regular grade machines.

Easy To Use

Even though it is commercial grade, the Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine is a simple machine to use. The set-up is quick and simple. It is mainly a matter of filling up the clean water tank with water and detergent and adjusting the height of the handle as needed. There are very few knobs and controls, even fewer than compared to their regular grade upright machine like the Bissell Proheat 2x deep cleaner. The Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine is clearly designed to offer an easy-to-use and effective cleaning experience, without attaching shiny features that may sound nice, but in most cases distract and interfere with the overall efficiency of the machine.

The 9 foot hose and 6 inch attachment tool makes it easy to clean stairs, upholstery like sofas or hard to reach areas.

Dry Time

Dry time for the Bissell Big Green 86T3/ 86T3Q is fast. The actual dry time will vary depending on the air circulation, humidity/temperature levels and the type of carpets being washed. That said, a number of users have describe about a 3-hour window for drying their carpets, which is relatively quick. The machine is designed to direct hot air from the running machine motors to hasten the drying. In addition, the suction power of the machine is very good. This means that the machine is able to suction up a lot of the water discharged to clean the carpets.

Things To Be Aware Of

More Expensive Than Regular Carpet Cleaners

The main downside of the Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine is it’s high retail price of around $450, compared to $200 for a regular carpet cleaner. Here’s what you get in return: the best home carpet cleaning power, easy operations, freedom from common carpet machine problems and a longer lasting machine. Regular carpet shampooers will get carpets very clean, but not as clean as the Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaner. Regular cleaners just do not have the same level of workmanship, which often results in problems with tank leakages and tank lid alignments. The machine comes with a 5 year warranty period, compared to the 1 to 2 year period that regular carpet cleaners have.

This Bissell machine costs more upfront. Still, lots of people buy it because they see good value in the money saved on renting a high powered machine, expensive machine replacements and an overall great operations experience.

Heavy Weight

One thing to bear in mind is that the Bissell Big Green 86T3 is a heavy machine. It weighs around 42 pounds. Setting the machine up for use and pushing it around is not a problem for most people. But if this is a machine that you need to bring up and downstairs a lot, be prepared for some heavy lifting or have someone who can help.

The machine handling is ergonomically designed, so that it feels easy enough to push around for cleaning to be done. One user 2sequoyah described herself as a 60 year old, 5 foot 3 inch lady weighing 115 lb. If this gives your any comfort at all, she mentioned that she had no trouble no setting the machine up and using it.

If you are willing to forgo the better cleaning power for a lighter machine, consider a regular grade machine like the Hoover Power Scrub Deluxe FH50150.

If you are still not sure whether to go for a professional/ commercial grade machine like the Bissell 86T3 deep cleaner, or a regular full-sized upright machine like the Hoover Power Scrub FH50150, check out this Professional Vs. Regular Upright Home Carpet Cleaners Comparison for a detailed contrast of the pros and cons.

Compared To The Bissell BG10 Commercial Carpet Extractor

The Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine 86T3 is the same machine as the Bissell BG10 Commercial Carpet Extractor. The only differences are the the Bissell BG10 features a 1-year warranty (commercial use OK), a detachable yellow power cord, and no accessories.

Both have the same two motors powering them, one for vacuuming and one for brushing. (Be careful of unfounded online rumors that only the BG10 runs on two motors. See BG10 comparison.) Both are sold at around the same price.

For home users buying a carpet cleaner for their homes (and not to do commercial cleaning), the Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine 86T3 makes much more sense – you get more accessories ($60 value) and a much longer warranty period for the same money.

Cleaning Detergent

Bissell advises users to use Bissell 2X formula with the Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine. A 24 oz bottle of Bissell 2x cleaning solution does come included with the machine package. This is less than a normal full sized bottle of detergent, so depending on what your plans are, you may want to arm yourself with more detergent.

Choosing a good detergent formula can have a huge impact on final results. The manual states that using non-Bissell cleaning detergent could damage the machine and void the warranty. Some users have tried other brands of detergents to varying degrees of success. It could work for you if you understand the risks and know what you are doing. Otherwise, it’s just easier to choose a Bissell 2X formula.

There are several types of Bissell 2X detergents. Most people buy the Bissell 2X Professional Deep Cleaning Formula together with this machine. This detergent is very highly rated and is known to clean extremely well with Bissell carpet cleaners.

In addition, most shoppers also purchase a bottle of Bissell Stain Pretreat for Carpet & Upholstery with their Big Green machine. For older and deeper stains, pretreatment can literally work “miracles” according to some users.

Should You Buy The Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine 86T3?

The Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine 86T3/ 86T3Q is the best choice for serious home users who want their carpets cleaned right the first time around. If you are looking for the best cleaning results in combination with a smooth and lasting user-experience, this is the best home carpet cleaner that money can buy, bar none.

Bissell Big Green Deep Cleaning Machine 86T3/86T3Q Offers

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Limitation: We put every effort to provide the most accurate and helpful information but we cannot provide any warranties on this information. Please always research and use your discernment before you try the product or make a purchase.



Emmeline Chu








  1. Hi I have 4 dogs I don’t know if the Bissell Big Green 86T3 or the Bissell BG10 would be better I get messes every night

    • They are the same machine, and can be used for cleaning pet stains. But the Bissell Big Green 86T3 is packaged for domestic users (rather than commercial users) and comes with a longer warranty. If you read the review above, you will see a more thorough discussion. All the best.

    • Dennis DesRosiers says

      I also have four dogs but OMG I couldn’t bear to use the Big Green every night (as much as I love i). I also own two SpotBots to complement the Big Green. When the inevitable accidents happen…TG not too frequently…The SpotBots are the ultimate salvation performing a localized deep cleaning of the spot in question…Love them…They are my salvation

      • Thanks for your comment. SpotBots are lighter and handier for localized spots (more info). Can’t imagine having to drag the Big Green around every night either. 🙂

  2. Does anyone know if the Bissell 86T3 or Bissell BG10 Professional Grade Cleaners are able to do a RINSE ONLY SETTING without adding soap? Thanks

    • Hi Mary, these machines do not have a rinse only setting. To rinse their carpets with water only, users have been filling the clean water tank with no detergent added. You can check out this example here.

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