Bissell are a popular vacuum brand that specialise in low cost high performance vacuum cleaners. Their latest upright vacuum cleaner range includes over 20 different models from as little as $40 to over $200. At the lower end of this price range are two models that are featured in this Bissell Powerforce Helix Review:

  • Bissell Powerforce Helix Bagless Upright Vacuum 1701
  • Bissell Powerforce Helix Turbo 1701
Bissell Powerforce Helix Review

The original Bissell Powerforce Helix vacuum was the 1240 model released in 2012. The new versions of the Bissell Powerforce Helix range were released in 2016. They provide several improvements in both functionality, usability and performance. 

The Bissell Powerforce Helix Cleaning System

The Bissell Powerforce Helix cleaning system has a unique way of capturing dirt. The Helix separation system forces the dust and debris down into the bottom of the Easy Empty™ Dirt Cup via specially designed in-built "ribs". This design feature forces the air and dirt down rather than up into the filter the system. The benefit of this is that the vacuum's suction is maintained for longer. This also reduces the required frequency of cleaning of the removable washable filter.

Bissell Powerforce Helix Reviews


Bissell Powerforce Helix Review

Features

  • Powerful suction & rotating brush deep clean.
  • Bagless Easy Empty dirt cup.
  • Washable filter.
  • Exclusive Performance System.
  • Helix Dirt Separation System.
  • On board tools include Crevice Tool, Dusting Brush & Extension Wand.
  • Wide 13" cleaning path.
  • Dual edge cleaning provides Surround Suction® to clean hard-to-reach areas
  • 2 year limited warranty.

Specs

  • ​Power: 8 amps.
  • Weight: 12lbs.
  • Power Cord Length: 23'.
  • Hose length: 5ft stretched.
  • Multi-level filtration.
  • Dirt cup capacity: 1 litre.
  • 5 surface height settings.

The first thing that is surprising about the Bissell Powerforce Helix Upright Bagless Vacuum is the price. It is an extremely cheap vacuum cleaner! The features on offer for a vacuum of this price provides excellent value. However at this price you are obviously not going to get the same standard of performance and air filtration as with a Shark or Dyson for example.

We have evaluated over 200 user reviews on this cleaner on the manufacturer's website and on Amazon. The vast majority of reviews are highly positive. However, due to this model only recently being released earlier this year there are no reviews of how the vacuum performs over time. Our summary of the positive and negative comments from users on the Powerforce Helix Bagless Upright is given below:

Pros

  • One of the cheapest vacuum cleaners you will find at this price!
  • Easy to Empty Bagless design - no cost of replacement bags.
  • Washable filter - reduced cost of replacement filters.
  • Lightweight and easy maneuverability.
  • Good suction and cleans well including pet hair removal.
  • Easy to assemble.
  • Adjustable carpet settings. Works on both carpet and hard floors. The Bissell Powerforce Helix 1700 also has a 'bare floor' setting.

Cons

  • Short hose and extension wand.
  • The power cord is 23' which is short for larger homes.
  • No auto re-wind cord.
  • Only basic level of filtration (not HEPA). Although for this price that is to be expected.
  • No brush roll shut-off function.

The Verdict - if you are looking for a budget vacuum cleaner that is feature rich and high performing then you really cannot go far wrong with the Bissell Powerforce Helix Bagless Upright 1700.

This short video from Bissell shows you all the key features of this model:


Bissell Powerforce Helix Review

Features

  • Powerful suction & rotating brush deep clean.
  • Bagless Easy Empty dirt cup.
  • Washable filter.
  • Exclusive Performance System.
  • Helix Dirt Separation System.
  • On board tools include Crevice Tool, TurboBrush®, Dusting Brush & Extension Wand.
  • Wide 15" cleaning path.
  • Dual edge cleaning provides Surround Suction® to clean hard-to-reach areas
  • 2 year limited warranty.

Specs

  • ​Power: 8 amps.
  • Weight: 12lbs.
  • Power Cord Length: 25'.
  • Hose length: 8ft stretched.
  • Multi-level filtration.
  • Dirt cup capacity: 1 litre.
  • 5 surface height settings.

The Turbo 1701 model of the Bissell Powerforce Helix Upright Bagless Vacuum is slightly more expensive than the 1700 model. However, it is still an absolute bargain! The features on offer are the same as with the 1700 model but with the additional inclusion of a TurboBrush® tool (pictured below). This tool incorporates a mini air driven brush roll, which provides extra versatility for upholstery cleaning and easily stores on the unit. It also has a 2" wider cleaning path and a slightly longer cord and much longer hose attachment.

We have evaluated over 200 user reviews of this cleaner on the manufacturer's website. The vast majority of these reviews are highly positive, although due to this model only recently being released earlier this year there are no reviews of how the vacuum performs over time. 

Our summary of the positive and negative comments from users on the Bissell Powerforce Helix Turbo is given below:

Bissell Powerforce Helix Review

Pros

  • Excellent value vacuum cleaner at this Price!
  • Easy to Empty Bagless design - no cost of replacement bags.
  • Washable filter - reduced cost of replacement filters.
  • Lightweight and easy maneuverability.
  • Good suction and cleans well including pet hair removal.
  • Easy to assemble.
  • Adjustable carpet settings. Works on both carpet and hard floors. The Bissell Powerforce Helix Turbo 1701 has a 'bare floor' setting.
  • Additional Turbo Brush Roll, longer cord and wider cleaning head for added versatility.

Cons

  • No auto re-wind cord.
  • Only basic level of filtration (not HEPA). 
  • No brush roll shut-off function.
  • Turbo Brush Roll is less effective than a motorized brush attachment. However at this price range you will not find another vacuum that provides one! The TurboBrush is air driven so, if it's pressed too firmly into a surface, it may catch the brush and cause it to stop rotating. If you use a little less pressure it should keep rotating without issue!

The Verdict - The additional features that come with the Turbo add a significant percentage to the cost of this vacuum compared to the basic Powerforce Helix model. The TurboBrush® is useful for cleaning the sofa so you may consider the additional cost of the Bissell PowerForce Helix Turbo Bagless Vacuum 1701 worth it.

This short video from Bissell shows you all the key features of this model:

Conclusion

In this Bissell Powerforce Helix Review we have looked at the two new models in this range: the entry level model 1700 and the Turbo model​ 1701. Both are budget vacuum cleaners and are fantastic value. The performance of both models is practically identical, however with the Turbo you get some additional features for slightly more cost. Both models carry a 2 year limited warranty as well. If you are looking for a budget upright vacuum cleaner its easy to see why these are a popular choice for many people!