We chose a Hoover Max Extract 77 Multi-Surface Pro because, well, we had multiple surfaces. Part of the house had deep-pile carpet, part had Berber carpet, and the rest was (white) ceramic tile. With two dogs and a cat in the house, we needed something for regular maintenance of the floors that could clean up spills in carpets as well as keep the tile looking clean. The Max Extract 77 does the trick, but it’s only useful for maintenance – you can’t expect it to clean carpets that haven’t already been cleaned by professionals.
In our experience, the Max Extract 77 is useful for periodic touch-ups to your carpets, but you need to call the pros in to get the carpets clean in the first place. It will also quickly clog if you don’t completely vacuum a carpet before using it, and cleaning out the clog is a real pain in the rear. If your carpeted floor isn’t heavily tracked, the carpet cleaner will remove light staining and tracking. The spin brushes seem to work pretty well, and – if you follow the directions – the cleaner leaves carpet dry enough that the floor will dry overnight in a house with normal humidity. If you don’t think your carpets were dirty, you might be surprised at how grody the rinse water gets!
If your squeegee drops off like this, make Hoover send you one that fits.
When cleaning hard surfaces, you need to install a squeegee head. The one that came with the cleaner kept falling off, but Hoover replaced it with one that fits. As for cleaning, it’s the same as with carpets: it will keep a floor clean, but if you have industrial-strength dirt you’ll need an industrial-strength floor cleaner. I don’t’ know whether we just had a lousy grout job or what, but the hard-surface cleaner didn’t do much of anything to clean grout. It’s proven better for laminate floors than for tile.
This is a BIG machine!
Be prepared for a workout when using the Max Extract: it’s heavy and hard to steer. Especially on thick carpeting, you have to wrestle with it to use it. There is a hose and wand attachment for stairs and upholstery, though I’ve never used it.
The cleaner comes with small bottles of Hoover-brand cleaning solution, along with a “warning” that using other solutions will void the warranty (an empty threat, I suspect). Hoover solutions are pricey and hard to find, so we just bought what was available at Lowe’s.
Overall, I suspect this is little different from the rental carpet cleaners you get at the grocery. Neither of them is a replacement for professional cleaning, but both of them are OK for touch-ups. The Max Extract 77 also functions to pick up large spills, like an overflowing bathtub. If you’re the type who has the people with the big truck in three times a year, regularly using one of these in the house could probably save you one of those trips.