by Meg Davis
Vacuuming robots have come a long way. Every smart home needs a robotic vacuum and our goal is to help you find the Best Robot Vacuum for you!
We look at robotic vacuums that work on both hard floors and carpets. Primarily these are robotic vacuums, however our favorite also sports a mop feature. We've included both high end models and some that are more of an entry level.
If you previously used random patterned robot vacuums and weren't happy with the coverage or always found the robot getting stuck, you'll be pleasantly surprised at how well this generation of floor bots works. They use lasers, cameras and apps to help you pin point where to clean, and more importantly, where not to clean.
Here we go...
Our choice for
Best Robot Vacuum floor cleaner
RoboRock S5 Robot Vacuum and Mop
Reasons to Buy:
- Zoned Cleaning
- No-Go Zones
- Laser Sensor scans room to determine room layout
- Acts as a vacuum and a mop
Reasons to Avoid:
- Doesn't always get the corners
- Not as quiet as some of the others tested
Best Robot Vacuums on the Market
Roborock S5 Best Robot Vacuum and Mop
iRobot Roomba i7+ (7550)
Ecovacs Deebot 901 Robotic Vacuum Cleaner
Shark IQ Robot Vacuum with Self-Empty Base
Dyson 360 Heurist Robot Vacuum
iRobot Roomba 960 Robot Vacuum
Neato Robotics D7 Connected Laser Guided Robot
Review of Best Robot Vacuums to keep your floor clean
1. Roborock S5 Robot Vacuum and Mop
- Mop Tank
- Wi Fi App
- Weighs 7 lbs
- 1 year warranty
- Good Battery life
- Great suction
- Reliable Mapping
- Vacuum and Mop
- Works great on hard floors and carpet
- Doesn't support Multiple floor plans (at this writing)
- No self cleaning feature for emptying dust
This isn't the newest model of the Roborock robot vacuum, but we still think it is a better value than the newer S6 version. In fact we think it actually performs better.
The suction and the ability to reliably map out the floor plan are the two primary reasons we like this robot. After all the best root vacuum is one that you can count on. If its always getting stuck it defeats the purpose.
Another surprising feature of this model is the wet mop. While it may not be the best one out there, as an added feature it works pretty good.
One feature that would be nice to have is the self emptying feature that some of the newer vacuums have. Like the Shark and iRobot models reviewed later in this article and the ability to store multiple features. I read where this is coming but in the model we tested it wasn't available.
This robotic vacuum comes with both the bag and the filter cartridge giving you options for cleaning out your pool. Others may offer the multiple filters but you have to purchase extra. With this droid cleaner both types are included with the product at no extra charge.
The Roborock S5 was clearly best of the robotic vacuum floor cleaners we tested. It may lack some of the features other manufacturers offer, but this model just simply does what it supposed to do with out much tinkering around.
2. iRobot Roomba i7+ (7550)
Self Empty Base - Full Function
- Self Empty Base
- Wi fi App
- Weighs 7.5 lbs
- 1 year warranty
- Visual and Smart mapping
- Keep out Zones
- Multiple Floor Plans
- Allergen Lock Bags
- Quieter Operation
- Buggy Software
- Didn't perform as well on area rugs
iRobot is a brand that has been around for years and in many ways is the brand associated with floor robots.
Lets start with what we like about this robotic vacuum. First, it checks both boxes that were shortcomings on the Roborock S5. I comes with the self emptying feature as well as you can store multiple floor plans. And, it does a really good job of cleaning.
What we didn't like about this robotic vacuum was how difficult the software was to setup, the suction didn't seem to be as good as our top choice, and it seemed to struggle with carpets.
Given our premise we would rather have robot that does what its supposed to without intervention we had to bump this one down to our second pick.
It should be noted that software gets updated all the time and eventually the buggy software will get resolved. If the self cleaning feature how quiet the vacuum operates is more important that the quality of how well it vacuums the floor this would be an excellent choice.
3. Ecovacs Deebot 901 Robotic Vacuum Cleaner
Laser Guided - Budget
- Smart Nav 3.0
- hardwood and carpet suction plates
- 9.7 lbs
- 1 year warranty
- Spot cleaning for tough spots
- Works well on carpet and hard floors
- Laser technology seems to work better than camera technology
- Quiet operation
- 2 different suction modes
- Setup takes some time. Need to let the bot complete the discovery of the whole floor so that it can build the map.
- battery life not as good as others tested.
The Deebot has most of the feature other bots have, id does also have a "spot" mode for cleaning difficult spots. It also runs quieter than most of the models we tested as well as supports two different suction modes.
What moved this robotic vacuum down on our list was the difficulty/time it takes to initially setup the map. It's battery life is also lacking.
If this is your first fore into the robotic vacuum world this should be one of the bot's you check out. Its lower entry price makes it less disastrous if it turns out a robotic vacuum isn't going to work for you. For a basic robotic vacuum that works, on a budget its really hard to beat ecovacs Deebot.
Self Empty Base - Budget
- Self Clean base
- Self Clean Brush
- Weight is 13.2 lbs
- 1 year warranty
- Base self empties debris
- Self cleaning brush roll
- App Allows for selective cleaning
- replacement filters etc are reasonably priced
- Powerful Suction
- Seemed to get stuck more often than other models tested.
Shark is a well known brand when it comes to vacuums and it comes as no surprise that they make a quality floor robot.
We liked the self empty feature just like we did for the roomba model. They are so convenient they should be a standard for all vacuum robots.
The other area that the Shark IQ robot excelled was in suction power. It was one of the strongest that we tested. The cost of the replacement filters and the ability to selectively clean a room are also great features.
The flaw with this model was its propensity for getting stuck. As you know if your robot is continually needing to be unstuck why do you want to get it. The whole point is for you to not have to babysit it.
Despite getting stuck this was one of the top performers as far as actually cleaning the floor and carpet.
5. Dyson 360 Heurist Robot Vacuum
- Low light operation
- Full width brush bar for end to end cleaning
- weight 5.5 lbs
- 2 year warranty
- Powerful suction
- Smaller diameter gets into tighter spaces
- Simple to operate
- sleek docking station
- Fewer features than some of the other models tested.
Whats not to like about Dyson, cool design, cool color choice, narrower shape for tighter spots that need to be cleaned and a longer warranty. Dyson's suction power rated towards the top in our testing as well.
When I saw this model I immediately wanted to get it. Who wouldn't want such a cool looking vacuum.
While it does work really well the price is a little bit high for a vacuum. The navigation of this model is better than Dysons prior model and it also corrected the issue at the top of the robot that would get stuck when going under shallow openings. The new design has a flatter surface for the light that allows the vacuum to operate effectively in low light situations.
The elegant design is simple, and easy to use. And the design suction chamber is by Dyson and performs well as would be expected.
If nothing else we like this model for the look. The sleek yet functional design of the Dyson is awesome. Just beware that it comes at a price!
6. iRobot Roomba 960 Robot Vacuum
Best for Carpet
- Unique dual multi-surface rubber brushes
- Works with Amazon Alexa for voice commands
- Weighs 8.6 lbs
- 1 year warranty
- very easy to set up & sync with Wi Fi connectivity
- Easily switches between carpet, wood & ceramic tile
- Re-docks itself when it needs to recharge
- Works well for pet hair
- Doesn't come with self emptying feature
- bin size could be a little larger
- louder than the 600 series
If you are looking for an iRobot vacuum but don't want to pay the higher price for the full featured model. The Roomba 960 may be just what your looking for.
This model is a little bit louder than prior models but even so, it shouldn't be much of a deterrent.
We like how easy this model is to setup, the wi fi connectivity and software setup take a little bit of time, but is pretty much a non-event.
Our only beef with this roomba model is the performance. Deebot and Roborock model's reviewed were in the same general price range and performed better including pet hair.
The last issue with this vacuum is the price. Coming in at one of the higher price points we expected more from the unit.
If you're looking for an iRobot model and a lower price this model may be your bot!
7. Neato Robotics D7 Connected Laser Guided Robot
"D" Shaped Design
- "D" Shape Corner Cleaning Design
- Laser Guided Mapping
- Weight 3.96 lbs
- 1 year warranty
- Multiple floor plan mapping
- Cleans corners well
- Floor cleaning for carpets, hardwood, kitchen tiles
- 70% larger brush than leading round robots
- Perfect for pet hair
- Often failed to return to its base to recharge
- will not work with carpet nap over .6" long
- setup was a little challenging
We liked the concept of the D shape for the Neato D7 floor robot.
The idea of the squared corner on one side does make sense in that it can get in closer to the edge for right angled corners. If you have a lot of squared corners that are accessible by the droid, you may want to consider this model. The longer brush also picks up more pet hair.
While this robot vacuums the floor quite well, there were a couple of things that had us push this down the list of our top 5.
- It only works on carpet that has a nap of .6". This could be a show stopper for many that don't have a low pile carpet.
- More that other robots on this list, the droid failed to return to its base on occasion. while not the end of the world, it does defeat the purpose of having robot if you have to go find it and reset it.
- Setup was a little tricky on this floor bot, and require a little more babysitting to setup.
Overall we feel there are better options that this robot out there, however if you have a specific need for the squared corner design you may want to give it a look.
Roborock S5 Best Robot Vacuum and Mop
The Roborock S5 vacuum consistently performed in our testing. It had the fewest issues in getting setup and after being setup. For times when you need finer control over what the robot vacuums you have the use of the remote control.
While we firmly believe the self emptying feature would be a great thing to add, its not enough to knock it off the top spot on our list..
The iRobot i7 and the Shark IQ models both deserve honorble mentions of you just don't feel the Roborock S5 meets your own situation.
And if you feel you can't justify the high price tag for a robot, the Deebot 901 is great option for a laser guided floor bot.
Best Robot Vacuum Floor Cleaner Buying Guide
What to look for when buying the best Robot Vacuum
How well your robot vacuums can be awesome when it works, but can be the bane of your existence if its features don't match what your looking for. Also keep in mind while these newer robotic vacuums do a great job, you will still have some area you need to get in and clean above and beyond the cleaning done by robotic vacuum.
If you have large open spaces battery life can be a real important feature. Obviously for smaller areas this becomes less of a concern.
Features that can impact your battery life:
- More advanced features like intelligent mapping, higher suction, rotating brushes tend to draw on the battery life.
- Capacity of the battery
- Robots that use random patterns tend to take longer and use more battery life
- Charge and go is feature that allows the robot to recognize its battery is low and return to the charging station. After charged it picks up where it left off. This is a useful feature to mitigate shorter battery life issues.
Random Pattern vs. Intelligent Patterns
Just like it sounds, Bots that use random patterns randomly move through the room changing direction as they bump into objects. The advantage of these type of models are they usually have longer battery life and usually cost less.
There are various tech available to assist robots in creating a map of your home and efficiently covering the entire space and then returning to is docking area. The two most common technologies are camera's and lasers. The lasers tend to be more effective. One thing to keep in mind with camera technology is the bot needs to have a source of light if you are going to schedule it for the evening hours.
If you are going to unleash your robot on any level that is at the top of a stair case. You will want to either create an electronic wall or get a bot that has ledge detection.
If you have a lot of square corners that are accessible by a bot, you may want to consider a floor robot with a "D" shape. The straight edge of the "D" will all out the vacuum to get closer to the corner when cleaning.
No Go Zones
If you have a lot of areas with wires and items can get tangled or tight spots where your bot can easily get stuck. You want to look for a floor robot that will allow you to problematically mark off no go zones. This will keep your robot from trying to go into these problem areas. Other options (though less aesthetically pleasing) are magnetic strips and devices that create an electronic wall that the robot will not go through.
If you have a furry friend that leaves lots of pet hair lying around you will want to look at the brush features of your robot. Many robots offer brushes that clean themselves and avoid tangles from pet hair.
In general most filters are the same on these units. Try to get a filter that trap dirt and particles down to 2 microns. This will keep less dust in the air. When it comes to filters you may also want to consider how you feel about having to continually clean out the filter canister. While your robot is happily cleaning your floors you still have to remember to go empty out the dust/dirt and pet hair it picked up. One of the newer features companies like Shark and iRobot are offering is a self empty feature which means you only have to remember to clean the tank the base station every 3-4 weeks! The only down side is this feature does take up a little more space.
Integration will Smart Home devices (Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, for voice commands)
With the new software features many of the floor robots out there now support smart home devices ie "Alexa, vacuum the kitchen!" and off your robot goes to happily clean the kitchen floor. If this is important to you, you will want to make sure the bot you chose has this feature.
Recap of Best Robotic Vacuum Floor Cleaners