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Which upholstery cleaners for your couch are best?

Stains and dirt on your upholstery are never pleasant. When you want to relax on the couch or invite guests over for a game night, the last thing you want is to find a messy, blemished sofa. Whether pets, kids or simply everyday use are to blame, restoring your couch to its former glory is entirely possible. All you need is a good upholstery cleaner.

No matter if you’re spot-cleaning stubborn stains or accomplishing a full couch clean, the Bissell SpotClean ProHeat Portable Spot and Stain Carpet Cleaner is among your top options. 

What to know before you buy an upholstery cleaner for your couch

Identify your upholstery type

Before attempting to clean a stain, check what type of upholstery fabric you own. Some materials don’t do well with chemical sprays or machine cleaners. Always follow the cleaning guidelines of a specific material for the best results and to maintain longevity. For example, while cotton or polypropylene can handle certain sprays or maybe even a carpet cleaner, leather is more delicate and reacts better to a little warm water and dish soap. Check your couch’s manufacturing tag to learn how to clean it thoroughly. 

Upholstery cleaner types

There are many types of cleaning products and equipment to help keep your upholstery clean. Some spray cleaners are great for surface stains, while a heavy-duty machine cleaner might be needed for tough grease or makeup stains. If you have children or pets in your home, it may be appropriate to stick with nontoxic products. If there are residents in your home with sensitivities or allergies, unscented products may be ideal. On the other hand, if you’re hoping to achieve a clean, fresh smell, some upholstery cleaners add refreshing aromas to your living room.

Consider professional servicing for large projects

While you can certainly tackle a dirty couch on your own, you can also use a professional cleaning service for dirtier jobs. A professional will understand the upholstery and know the best products or machine to get your couch clean. You don’t need to worry about damaging your upholstery or struggling with unpleasant stains when a professional can do the strenuous work instead.

What to look for in a quality upholstery cleaner for your couch


Examine your couch’s level of dirtiness and choose an upholstery cleaner that is up for the task. If you want something to keep your couch clean on the regular, a gentle cleaner is suitable. However, if you have stubborn stains or need to get rid of unpleasant smells, a heavy-duty cleaner will be the most effective. Some machine cleaners come with varying power modes to suit your needs. 


The best upholstery cleaner for your couch can serve multiple purposes. It can handle light or heavy stains on your couch, but it also should be able to clean other fabrics in your home. If you have chairs with stains or even areas of your carpet to clean, the most dependable upholstery cleaner should be able to tackle the job. Some machine cleaners come with a variety of attachments to clean various types of dirt marks or stains.

Size and weight

Cleaning your couch and other upholstery doesn’t need to be a sweat-inducing task. Make the job manageable by choosing products or equipment that are easy to use. An upholstery cleaner for your couch could be a spray bottle with a gentle cleaning formula or a lightweight machine cleaner to get it deep-cleaned. If you plan to use your cleaner around the house or even on your car’s interior, a lightweight version is most helpful. 

How much you can expect to spend on an upholstery cleaner for your couch

You can find plenty of spray bottle upholstery cleaners for between $2 and $25. If you want an upholstery cleaner machine, expect something in the range of $60 to $150.

Upholstery cleaner FAQ

How often should I clean my couch?

A. The rate at which you clean your couch depends on how much use it gets and how quickly it becomes soiled. If you have pets and kids, that may mean cleaning it more often. Weekly vacuuming is recommended, but it’s helpful to spot-clean your couch as soon as a spill or stain occurs to prevent permanent damage.

What types of material shouldn’t be cleaned with an upholstery cleaner?

A. Avoid using harsh chemicals or a machine cleaner on leather, velvet or suede fabrics. It’s also best to leave microfiber fabrics free of chemical spray and machine cleaners.

What are the best upholstery cleaners for your couch to buy?

Top upholstery cleaner for your couch

Bissell SpotClean ProHeat Portable Spot and Stain Carpet Cleaner

Bissell SpotClean ProHeat Portable Spot and Stain Carpet Cleaner

What you need to know: Tackle tough stains with Bissell’s HeatWave Technology when you invest in this spot-clean upholstery cleaner. 

What you’ll love: A 37-ounce tank capacity makes cleaning simple, since you don’t need as many trips to refill. Deep-reach attachments help you remove stains from the bottom up, while a self-cleaning tool makes difficult stains easy. The water tank is removable for easy filling and emptying. 

What you should consider: There are a few user complaints about their product leaking throughout use. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top upholstery cleaner for your couch for the money

Resolve 22 fl. oz. Multi-Fabric Cleaner and Upholstery Stain Remover

Resolve 22 fl. oz. Multi-Fabric Cleaner and Upholstery Stain Remover

What you need to know: With this spray-bottle cleaner, take care of stains and dirt before they have the chance to settle in. 

What you’ll love: Keeping your couch clean is possible to manage on a budget. This upholstery cleaner is safe to use on many upholstery types, including polyester, cotton and nylon. The concentrated formula can clean up to 1,600 square feet of upholstery. 

What you should consider: This product works best with a good cleaning cloth or sponge, which is not included in the purchase.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Mohawk Finishing Products Upholstery/Fabric Cleaner

Mohawk Finishing Products Upholstery/Fabric Cleaner

What you need to know: This upholstery cleaner is easy to use and bleach-free. 

What you’ll love: Attack spills and stains with this trusted brand’s upholstery cleaner spray. Since it is water-based, it is designed to clean a wide variety of fabrics, including leather. It can help with a mixture of stains, such as ink, grease, sunblock and more. 

What you should consider: Some users find this formula too weak for their toughest stains.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon


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Abbey Ryan writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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