Bissell CrossWave full review

If you're in the market for a new vacuum, which you must be otherwise you wouldn’t be reading this, then you do well to consider the Bissell CrossWave, a multi-surface cleaner that allows you to simultaneously vacuum and wash any hard floor or carpet. Switching from one mode to the other is as easy as pushing a button.

We love the idea behind the CrossWave, but we’re not sure it’s for everyone. Here’s our review of Bissell CrossWave multi-surface cleaner.

Bissell CrossWave: Price and availability

The Bissell CrossWave isn't the cheapest vacuum, but it’s not as expensive as a top-of-the-line Dyson at least. Plus, since it's essentially both a floor cleaner and a vacuum, the price seems a bit friendlier. 

Its retail price is £249.99/$249.99 and it can be bought from  Amazon, Argos, or Bissell’s official website (which offers free delivery) in the UK, or from Amazon, Best Buy, or Bissell in the US.

If you’d like to compare it do other devices, here’s our round-up of the best vacuums we’ve reviewed so far.

Bissell CrossWave: Design and build

Bissell is an American brand well-known for its vacuums and its floor cleaning products. It released the CrossWave in 2017 and it is, for now, its only multi-surface cleaner.

The device is very easy to assemble and is ready to be used almost instantly. It just needs a bit of warm water and cleaning product in the water tank and you’re good to go. The cleaning product has to be the one from the brand, but you can find it online easily and a mini bottle is provided when you buy the CrossWave.

With its grey and blue design, this vacuum looks rather modern, though we're not such fans of the bright green version that you get in the US.

At first glance the design of the handle on the top of the motor makes it seem like you could use this as a handheld vacuum, but you can’t. The handle is there because the CrossWave weights 5kg, which doesn’t sound like much but it is - especially once you add in the weight of the water and cleaning solution. When you use it for more than 10 minutes, it is a mini-workout for your arms, so beware.

It is also important to point out that because the vacuum has a large motor it is too thick to go under most furniture, and isn't very manoeuvrable around corners either. There is no nozzle or attachment provided to tackle this problem. It’s a shame because if this is your only vacuum, it means you need to use a broom under the furniture and in every corner of the room.

At the top of the handle, there is two buttons that allows you to pick between the rug or the hard floor mode. Under the handle, there is a large button that you can easily press to enable the wash mode.

Bissell CrossWave: Features and performance

The CrossWave is a multi-surface cleaner, which as it name suggest, can be used on different types of floors. In this instance, it works on rugs, tiles, wooden floor, and vinyl.

It is made to save you time by hoovering and mopping altogether. We’ve used it on all the surfaces mention before, except vinyl, and were mostly happy with the results. It’s most convenient on rugs, because it does make it very easy to give it a quick wash.

We found that the best way to use the device is to vacuum first, empty the bin, and then use the wash feature (which you activate by pressing the handle). You can use both features simultaneously, but that means the dirt and the water are mixed in the bin, and it’s a bit more of a hassle to clean later.

Speaking of emptying the bin, it can be removed from the body of the vacuum for emptying easily enough, but not without having a bit of dust escape, which is obviously frustrating after you've just cleaned everything.

While we mostly preferred to use the vacuuming and washing modes separately, they can be useful together, for example if you spill something on the floor and you want get rid of it quickly. You might also like this if you have pets or kids that bring back mud and dirt from the outside. Note that the CrossWave does leave the floor wet after using the washing mode, but you can fasten the drying process if you just vacuum over it.

The CrossWave is a corded vacuum, which obviously can be a limitation. The cord gets in the way all the time if you don’t carefully wrap it around the vacuum (which is easier said than done), and you'll obviously have to stay in range of a power socket at all times. It's hardly the end of the world, but feels backwards given how good cordless vacuums have now become.