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Best Robot Vacuums for Keeping Your Floors Prestine

Robot vacuums have been around for years, but have become increasingly popular lately. Whereas iRobot once owned the segment with a product that was notably superior, many legitimate competitors have emerged with compelling alternatives to the Roomba. In an effort to entice consumers, many of these manufacturers pack tons of features into an affordable package. As such, it's easier than ever to try out a futuristic way to conveniently clean floors with a push of a button.

If you own a pet, a robot vacuum is an irreplaceable tool to combat shedding. While robot vacuums typically cannot clean the deeper layers of carpet as standard vacuums can, it can keep the surface free of dust and pet hair with nearly no effort on your part. If you have hardwood floors, a robot vacuum can just about take the place of the chore of regular vacuuming. Robot vacuums are also particularly appealing for people who have a hard time moving around due to injury or condition. You can keep your house clean even when you are not physically able to.

Thanks to heavy competition in the marketplace, there's a plethora of good robot vacuums with increasingly affordable price tags. If you are considering a robot vacuum check out our list of the best robot vacuum in 2021, now may be the best time to purchase one.

The Best Robot Vacuum Models of 2021 in Detail

iRobot Roomba i7+ Robot Vacuum - Best Robot Vacuum Overall

One of the most recognizable names in the robot vacuum space is iRobot's Roomba; in fact, it can be argued that the name "Roomba" has become the genericized term for robot vacuum much in the same way that "Kleenex" refers to facial tissues. The Roomba has established itself as a high-tech premium choice, but iRobot actually offers multiple models to choose from with prices ranging from a few hundred dollars to over a thousand. Any Roomba model could easily take the title for best robot vacuum, but we particularly like the Roomba i7+ because of its balanced set of features. The i7+ model builds upon the base Roomba by turning the charging base into a Clean Base Automatic Dirt Disposal. At the end of a cleaning cycle, the Roomba will return to its charging base where it will automatically empty its dirt bin in a disposable bag. After all, isn't ultimate convenience the primary reason for having a robot vacuum around?

The i7+ is the model we recommend, but iRobot actually makes a higher-end one called the Roomba s9/s9+. As with the i7/i7+ series, the plus symbol indicates the inclusion of the Automatic Dirt Disposal base. The s9+ costs approximately $300 more than the i7+; for the additional money, it offers higher suction power, dual brushes for improved general cleaning, a squared-off design with a more effective corner brush, and an anti-allergen system to filter out contaminants in the air. Although all these extra features are compelling, we believe the i7+ is the better all-around pick, as it offers similar performance and day-to-day convenience.

Eufy 30C MAX Robot Vacuum - Runner Up

Splurging on the best robot vacuum you can find sounds like a great idea on paper, but it definitely helps to check out the direct competition as well. While iRobot may have owned the robot vacuum market initially, you now have some great alternatives to the Roomba such as the Eufy RoboVac 30C. If you're not familiar with the Eufy name (stylized as "eufy" in most cases), you might recognize its parent brand, Anker. In fact, you might already own a piece of two of their equipment. After all, Anker has firmly established its reputation as a reputable brand that makes quality tech products. True to form, the Eufy line of robot vacuums are a more affordable alternative, but do not skimp on quality, performance, or even features. The 30C comes loaded with a laundry list of features designed to make operation as convenient as possible. Eufy provides Wi-Fi connectivity and a dedicated app for your phone, and you can control your 30C with either the app or your voice via Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant. As with many of the best robot vacuums on the market, the 30C is equipped with sensors that can detect potential drops, preventing it from falling down stairs or off ledges. Eufy even includes magnetic strips to instruct the vacuum to stay away from a designated area. The price tag is extremely competitive, coming in at a fraction of the cost of an equivalent Roomba vacuum. Thanks to that significant advantage, the Eufy RoboVac 30C is one of the best robot vacuums you can buy.

Uoni Robot Vacuum Cleaner - Most User-Friendly

While Roomba may be the most recognized name in the robot vacuum market, it does not deliver the same hands free experience as the Uoni V980Plus Robot Vacuum Cleaner. It comes with a Self-Emptying Dustbin that provides you with 30-days managed cleaning service. Once Uoni finishes cleaning, it returns to the charging base where its dustbox is automatically cleaned by its high-power dust collection function. It keeps collecting the dirt until the dust bag is full then flashes the orange light to remind you to replace the bag.

Uoni is fitted with a Lidar mapping technology which helps it memorize the map of your house. Using it, the robot cleans your home while avoiding the various obstacles. Plus, there are about 25 different sensors and lidar that facilitate its navigation.

Yeedi k650 Robot Vacuum - Honorable Mention

With the Yeedi k650, there will be no more irritating hair tangles because of its innovative tangle-free silicone main brush, which efficiently filters pet hair without becoming trapped. The largest XXL 800ML trashcan let's you capture more debris per clean, reducing the frequency you need to empty the can. It comes with a comprehensive set of sensors to help you traverse your house securely. Anti-Drop sensors detect and prevent falls on stairs. Anti-collision sensors assist in avoiding collisions with objects such as furniture. The low-profile body cleans beneath couches, mattresses, and other furniture where dirt may readily hide. For room-by-room cleaning, the floating wheel easily climbs over doorsills.

The specialized and improved sensors detect bounding taps to ensure your robot cleans just the areas you specify. A clean system with twin side brushes, a high-speed rotating main brush, and a suction force of up to 2000pa effectively loosens, lifts, and sucks dirt from carpets, wood floors, and tiles.

GOOVI Robot Vacuum - Contender

While narrowing down our field, we kept encountering this particular robot vacuum and took notice. It's backed up by raving reviews from over 2,000 happy owners, and the price is too low to ignore. While it's not an instantly recognizable brand like Roomba, this GOOVI vacuum offers many of the same convenient features. It can be operated manually through the included remote control; otherwise, it will maneuver itself around your furniture and clean floors automatically. Unlike many cheaper units, this robot vacuum is equipped with a sensor to detect if it's about to take a tumble down a flight of stairs and adjust accordingly. GOOVI claims up to 100 minutes of run time on a single charge, and the vacuum will navigate itself back to the charging base when the battery runs out. It's priced more affordably than the Eufy vacuum we selected and seems to go on sale often enough to make a real difference.

Neato Robotics D6 Connected Laser Guided Robot Vacuum Cleaner - Contender

The Neato BotVac 85 might not be cheap, but this robot vacuum delivers significant performance advantages over comparable models that cost more. Neat vacuums are unique for their use of an embedded laser which scans the room to build a map of the area. This drastically alters their cleaning behavior, allowing them to perform in a more orderly manner, versus bouncing around when it detects objects or walls.

The BotVac 85 provides several improvements over previous models, including a side brush, larger main brush, and a larger dust bin. The vacuum has also been made quieter, making it possible to carry on a conversion while it’s in use. Run times are quick for a robot vacuum, and the magnetic boundary markers are easier to use than iRobot’s Virtual Walls system.

If you follow instructions to fully charge and discharge the unit two to three times before the first use, the BotVac 85 can operate for over an hour on a single charge. Although it’s a bit too expensive to get away with no included remote control, the Neato BotVac nonetheless is an excellent overall performer for a good price.

Buyer's Guide

Robot vacuums take cleaning convenience for the millennial to the next level. They pack all the features of a traditional manual vacuum cleaner and one more – autonomy. They work completely hands-free and depending on the models, can even empty their dustbins themselves. Robot vacuums are basically cleaners in your home who don’t get tired, you won’t need to pay, and are ready to work at any time.

Initially, we gave you an outline of the best robot vacuums on the market that stand out from the bunch with great qualities, but you may still be unsure of which to choose. We’re still here to help.

In the rest of this buying guide, we run through a list of considerations you want to make and qualities to look out for in a robot vacuum so that you can hone in on the particular one that suits your needs.

What Should I Consider Before Buying a Robot Vacuum?

Robot vacuums come in all shapes and sizes, and choosing one for your needs will pool a number of considerations you want to make.

Types of Robot Vacuums

The first consideration you want to make is the type of robot vacuum you want to go for. Robovacs are classified according to their features, their navigation ability, intended use, etc.

Dedicated vs Multipurpose Robovacs

According to their features robot vacuums are classified as dedicated and multipurpose robot vacuums.

Dedicated or niche-specific robot vacuums are designed to work with particular floor profiles, types of dirt, etc.

Multipurpose robot vacuums are the jack-of-all-trades of robot vacuums. They come with different features that make them versatile to different floor and dirt profiles.

Conventional vs Smart Robot Vacuums

The next thing you want to decide is whether to go for a conventional or smart robot vacuum cleaner. Conventional robot vacuums do all the cleaning with basic preprogrammed functions.

Smart robot vacuums add the quality of mobile connectivity. Via a Wi-Fi or Bluetooth connection and a mobile app, you can create cleaning schedules, monitor cleaning in real-time for vacuums with cameras, and with assistants, can even use voice control.

Based on Their Navigation

One key quality that separates robot vacuums is their navigation ability. Some robot vacuums don’t have a particular navigation system and are designed to just bounce off obstacles and clean in an irregular pattern. Higher-end robot vacuum cleaners will typically come with cameras or laser-based navigation systems and may also include smart mapping that ensures the most efficient cleaning in the shortest time frames.

Floor Material

Another key factor you want to consider is the material of your floors. Some robot vacuums clean better on hardwood or smooth floors and others, better on carpets and rugs. This is an extension of the point on dedicated or hybrid robot vacuums.

Most robot vacuums, however, will still perform sufficiently well on different floor profiles and automatically make adjustments to the suction power, brush speed, etc. depending on the floor texture.

Noise

Like with all machines that are used indoors, the noise levels on your robot vacuum is one factor you should consider. The quieter the better. Noise levels are specified in decibels and will be provided by the manufacturer.

Self-charging Bots

You certainly want to go for a self-charging robot vacuum to get the most functionality but this feature will typically come with higher-end vacuums. They are designed to find their way back to their charging pods once they are done cleaning and save the hassle of having to always carry them there.

Your Budget

Robot vacuums sit in a very wide price range and your choice will depend on your budget.

Cheap

Cheap robot vacuums sit anywhere between $100-300 and typically come with the least smart features.

Mid-range

Mid-range robot vacuum cleaners sit between $250-1000. They come with more smart features and are great for most purposes.

Pricey

High-end robovacs pack the smartest features from navigation to self-emptying bins. You can expect to get one from between $750-3000.

Size of the Space

The size of your home or space is another factor to consider. The larger the cleaning space, the longer the robot vacuum will have to work and this will also affect other factors like the size of the dust bag. This will in turn require a larger vacuum.

Battery Life

Most robot vacuums are battery-powered making them compact and reliable. The higher the battery capacity, the longer the robot vacuum can work before it needs a recharge. Larger batteries, however, mean a heavier unit overall. For self-charging robot vacuums, the battery capacity may not be a serious problem.

FAQs

Q: What is the difference between a robot vacuum and a Roomba?
A: All Roombas are robot vacuums but not all robot vacuums are Roombas. Roombas are robot vacuums made by the company iRobot. Roombas come with features characteristic of high-end robot vacuums and are renowned for their performance.

Q: Are vacuum-mop hybrids worth it?
A: The short answer – not really.
A: The long answer – robot vacuums that come with mops are typically designed to be able to handle both hardwood floors and carpets. But performance tests have shown that dedicated robot vacuum cleaners perform the best.

Q: Are robot vacuums better than traditional vacuums?
A: Robot vacuums and traditional vacuum cleaners each have their pros and cons. Robot vacuums boast of hands-free performance and are compact. Traditional vacuum cleaners, even though bulkier, boast of much more powerful suction and can handle large debris that robot vacuums can’t. Traditional vacuum cleaners also perform better than robot vacuums when cleaning carpets.

Q: Are robot vacuums great for cleaning pet hair and litter?
A: If you have pets in the house, a robot vacuum may be a great investment to make. Many modern vacuums are coming with features that make short work of sweeping up pet hair. Some models may even take care of pet litter but these will typically require more frequent maintenance to keep them clean.

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