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The 5 Best Robotic Vacuums (2022 Review)

Robot vacuums use sensors and bumpers to navigate your home as they clean your floors. In this review, the This Old House Reviews Team researched the five best robotic vacuums on Amazon to help you find the product that’s right for you. The products included in this article are available at various retail stores, local home centers, and online retailers like Amazon.

Roomba i7+ Courtesy iRobot

Robot vacuums pick up dirt and debris from your home’s floors using automated sweeping. They do the work for you and reach tight spaces that many traditional vacuums can’t. To help you find the best robotic vacuum for your home, the This Old House Reviews Team did the research for you, scouring Amazon for effective models. Here are our top picks.

Best Control Options: Ecovacs Robot Vacuum Cleaner

Whether you’re next to the vacuum in your office or across the home in your bedroom, you can control this robot using the compatible mobile app, the included remote, the power button, or a voice assistant. Balancing functionality with affordability, this budget-friendly unit offers auto, spot, and edge cleaning modes, a 110-minute runtime, and a 520-milliliter dustbin.

Key Features

  • Works with voice assistants and the included remote
  • Has a 520-milliliter dustbin
  • Runs for 110 minutes
  • Comes with a one-year warranty

What Customers Are Saying

Customers found this vacuum to be useful for picking up pet hair. They also liked its low noise level and easy operation. However, negative reviews frequently mentioned the vacuum getting stuck because of its poor navigation system.

Largest Dustbin: ILIFE Robot Vacuum

Though affordable, this vacuum offers versatility with six cleaning modes, a 750-milliliter dustbin, and a 110-minute runtime. It also doubles as a mop to clean stuck-on grime from wood, tile, and other hard floors.

Key Features

  • Works with the included remote
  • Doubles as a mop
  • Has a 750-milliliter dustbin
  • Runs for 110 minutes
  • Comes with a one-year warranty

What Customers Are Saying

Amazon customers liked this unit’s reasonable cost, overall effectiveness, and combo vacuum and mop design. Some users struggled to get it to scrub tough grime and pick up thick hair, though.

Best Accessories: eufy Robot Vacuum Cleaner

Slim enough to slide under couches, beds, and other furniture, this robotic vacuum is able to fit where many robotic, stick, and upright vacuums can’t. It uses infrared sensors to detect obstacles and avoid falls, so you can spend less of your time freeing a stuck vacuum. It’s also sold with a remote control, two AAA batteries, a charging base, an AC power adapter, a cleaning tool, an extra set of filters, four side brushes, and five cable ties.

Key Features

  • Works with the included remote
  • Has a 600-milliliter dustbin
  • Runs for 100 minutes
  • Comes with a one-year warranty

What Customers Are Saying

Happy customers described this robotic vacuum as easy to control and lightweight. However, other customers complained that this vacuum wasn’t powerful enough to remove debris from high-pile carpets.

Longest Runtime: Roborock Robotic Vacuum

Before it begins cleaning your floors, this vacuum uses a high-precision laser system to map your home. You can set certain areas you don’t want cleaned. From there, you can start using it to vacuum and mop your floors for up to 180 minutes at a time.

Key Features

  • Works with voice assistants
  • Has a 290-milliliter water tank
  • Runs for 180 minutes
  • Comes with a one-year warranty

What Customers Are Saying

Customers liked that they could control this vacuum on a smartphone app. They also said that it had a high-powered motor. The powerful motor came at a cost, though, as it was loud. The vacuum also got stuck for some customers.

Best Self-Cleaning Function: iRobot Robot Vacuum

One of the less-desirable parts of vacuuming is cleaning out the dustbin. Thankfully, this machine minimizes how often you have to do this. Once it finishes vacuuming and returns to its docking station, it shoots the debris from the dustbin into the trash bag in the dock. The bag is large enough to hold 60 days’ worth of dust, dirt, pollen, dander, and hair.

Key Features

  • Works with voice assistants
  • Has a 60-day self-emptying dust system
  • Comes with a one-year warranty

What Customers Are Saying

Many Amazon customers were thrilled with this vacuum’s automatic disposal feature, which made trash takeout a monthly job instead of a weekly one. Other satisfied users said that this vacuum had a long-lasting battery and powerful suction. However, some reviewers commented that the trash disposal system was noisy. Others were critical of the app’s complicated user interface.

Buying Guide

To make an informed purchase, it’s important to understand how a robotic vacuum’s specifications impact its performance. Here are some design elements that vary from model to model.

Battery Life

You need to charge a robotic vacuum before sending it off to clean your home. Most robotic vacuums have a battery life of around two hours. However, your vacuum may not last this long if it’s cleaning high-pile carpet, sucking up a lot of debris, set to a high setting, or using an older battery.

Control

Robotic vacuums can be controlled in a number of ways. They often have a power button for a quick start as well as a compatible mobile app, a remote control, or both. With a smart app, you can customize how the vacuum cleans your home by setting schedules, selecting cleaning modes, and choosing rooms. Some high-end models also work with voice assistants, such as Amazon Alexa.

Vacuuming Function

Robotic vacuums typically offer several cleaning modes, including whole-home, spot, and edge cleaning. More advanced models use smart mapping to create an outline of your entire home. After creating this layout, it can tackle your rooms in a systematic way or avoid certain areas.

Mopping Function

Some robotic vacuums come with a water tank in addition to a dustbin. Pair this with a microfiber pad, and you can scrub grime as well as suck up debris. However, take care to only use this setting on hard floors.

Durability

You don’t want to purchase a new robotic vacuum only for it to end up in the landfill after a year or two of use. Fortunately, many bots have easy-to-find replacement filters and brushes. Batteries, wheels, and transmissions are also relatively common replacement parts. Since your vacuum will naturally bump into walls, baseboards, and pieces of furniture, look for a model with reinforced edges and sides.

Noise

Though it might be useful to run your robotic vacuum cleaner while you’re out and about, there will be times when you’re home while the unit is on. If you work from home or spend a lot of time at home, look for a quieter bot that operates at 50–55 decibels, as this is about the volume of a humming refrigerator. Anything closer to 65–70 decibels may be too loud to have a conversation, watch a show, or answer a work call.

Dustbin

A larger dustbin can collect more debris before you need to empty it. However, it’s a fine line because you don’t want the bin to be so large that the vacuum doesn’t fit under furniture or in tight spaces. The sweet spot is usually 500–750 milliliters.

Cleaning Tips

The autonomous nature of robotic vacuum cleaners makes them convenient. However, don’t expect these machines to magically clean your home without any oversight. Though they require little involvement, here are a few ways to ensure that your robotic vacuum does the best job possible:

  • Read your robotic vacuum’s manual to ensure that you fully understand how to use and maintain it.
  • Some robotic vacuum cleaners come with drop-sensing technology that prevents them from tumbling down the stairs. If your robotic vacuum doesn’t include this feature, you may want to keep it away from stairs and other steep declines.
  • Clean out your vacuum’s dustbin when it gets full to keep it running smoothly.
  • If your model doesn’t automatically return to its dock after a cleaning session, manually attach it so that it’s recharged for next time.

Frequently Asked Questions

How often do you have to empty a robot vacuum?

It depends on how large your house is, what capacity the dustbin has, and how dirty your floors are. In general, most robotic vacuum cleaners need to be emptied after each use.

Do robot vacuums scratch hardwood floors?

Though robot vacuums are designed to clean hardwood, it’s important to keep your robot’s wheels clean to prevent stuck-on dirt and debris from scratching your floors.

Can robot vacuums clean multiple types of floors?

Yes. These machines can vacuum any surface in your home, including carpet, hardwood, and tile. If your model has a mopping function, it can also mop hard floors.

How do robotic vacuums avoid obstacles?

In the early days of robotic vacuums, these cleaners frequently got stuck. Now, they use sensors to map your home and avoid extension cords, floor vents, rug fringes, and more.

Why Trust The This Old House Reviews Team

This Old House has empowered homeowners for more than four decades with top-notch home improvement content in the form of television programs, print media, and digital content on its website and social media platforms. The This Old House Reviews Team focuses on creating in-depth product and service review content to help inform your purchasing decision for just about any item or resource that you might need for your home. The This Old House Reviews Team has written over 1,000 reviews on products in the home space, from cordless drills to kitchen trash cans, lawn mowers, and dining room decorations.

We recommend products in each review using an intensive research process, spending hours combing through the best available models on Amazon. For a product to make our list of top picks, it must hold a solid sales record on Amazon, have consistently positive customer reviews, and offer unique features, among other factors. After narrowing down our list of recommendations, we conduct additional research and sometimes in-person testing to ensure that the products meet our standards. Once we conclude the research phase, we craft a well-rounded, user-friendly article that includes our recommended products and additional information to help homeowners like you make the right purchase.

To share feedback or ask a question about this article, send a note to our Reviews Team at reviews@thisoldhousereviews.com.