Best Robot Vacuum Cleaner – 2017 Guide

In a hurry? Best Budget Choice: RoboVac 11 | Best Overall Choice:  Roomba 980

Robotic vacuum cleaners have been somewhat of a debatable topic among many users and as technology increases, so will the performance of robot vacuums.

At first, I was a bit skeptical myself on how these automated vacuums would work, but it turns out that they work just fine on their own. In fact, they can even be more efficient than myself and work on a scheduled program so I do not have to worry about being home in order for it to be clean.

robot vacuum top picks

The fact that I can just let the robot go and clean is pretty impressive to me and when it is done, it returns to its charging dock. I really could not ask for a more self-sufficient vacuum and these robots do just the trick.

This list is going to look at the best robot vacuums that are out on the market today. The robotic vacuums on this list vary between manufacturers, some of which may come as a surprise to you.

I can assure you though that these robots are the best auto vacuums out there today, and they are definitely well worth the investment. While the technology behind these vacuums is still expanding, their performance is very solid, minus a few mishaps here and there, but it is nothing to be concerned about.

Hopefully, this list can give you more of a look into the world of robotic vacuums and just how efficient they can be with literally just a few pushes of a button.

Best Robotic Vacuum 2017

Name/ImageLearn MoreBrandRatingWeight (lbs)Features
iRobot Roomba 980

iRobot Roomba 980

view pricesfull reviewsiRobot5 Star Average Rating 8.7120 minutes run time, AeroForce Cleaning System for 10x the air power, iAdapt 2.0 Navigation with Visual Localization
Neato Botvac Connected

Neato Botvac Connected

view pricesfull reviewsNeato5 Star Average Rating 9LaserSmart mapping and navigation, Eco & Turbo modes, D-Shape design with CornerClever technology
bObi Pet Robotic

bObi Pet Robotic

view pricesfull reviewsbObi5 Star Average Rating 10bObi blOck digital barrier, 5-in-1 cleaning operation, wireless remote and touchscreen buttons
Crenova Robot

Crenova Robot

view pricesfull reviewsCrenova4.5 Star Average Rating 7High suction power and automatic height-adjustment, quiet 55 dB operation, 4-in-1 cleaning capability & 5 cleaning modes
Eufy RoboVac 11

Eufy RoboVac 11

view pricesfull reviewsEufy4.5 Star Average Rating 6.73-Point Cleaning System, Over 1.5 hours of fade-free power, anti-scratch tempered glass

iRobot Roomba 980

irobot roomba 980The Roomba series is perhaps one of the most famous, or at least well known, lines of automatic vacuum cleaners to date. This series from iRobot has presented a marvelous line-up of robotic vacuums and I do not think it is a stretch to say that the Roomba 980, in particular, is the best Roomba that they have released.

The 980 is the top model in the current Roomba series and for good reason, its performance outshines any of the prior models. With a long runtime and powerful suction ability, the 980 ranks at the top of this list for a multitude of reasons.

Longer Cleaning Time

One reason why the 980 stands out is for its long lasting life. Compared to previous Roomba models, the 980’s life goes far beyond many of its predecessors, lasting at an incredible 120 minutes of cleaning time.

For most, if not the majority, of cord-less or robotic vacuums, none come even close to what the 980 offers. In fact, the Roomba 960 offers 75 minutes of cleaning time, which is 45 minutes difference. That right there is what separates the 980 from so many of its competitors.

Cover the Whole House

In addition to its longer life, the 980 is able to navigate through the entirety of one level of a house. Most Roomba models stick to either one room, or maybe two to three, but the 980 can cover it all. In conjunction with its battery life, the 980 can cover some serious ground and get the job done well.

When you factor in its 10x air power, carpets are left completely clean and I do not think there is much of a debate on how effective the 980 is. The AeroForce Cleaning System is an excellent feature that easily works on carpet, rugs, and even hardwood flooring.

Expensive but Worth it

The most obvious area of concern regarding the 980 is with its rather hefty price. It definitely is one of the more expensive robotic models, and vacuums in general, that I have seen. Not many people can budget for this easily, but I will be the first to tell you that this iRobot Roomba is well worth the money.

As a pet owner, I never have found hair on the floor once I got the 980 and it really picks up everything. Cleaning it is not much of a hassle either, so it really is a compact little system.

Conclusion

Overall, the Roomba 980 tops my list and for multiple great reasons. The 980 has an excellent battery life along with a great suction system. As is the case with really any robotic vacuum, it will have its issue with stairs.

That aside, this Roomba is a one of a kind vacuum that truly makes plug and play simple. Aside from areas that involve cleaning with water such as the kitchen or bathroom, I do not know if I will have to worry about sweeping again as long as I have the 980. I absolutely recommend this vacuum to anyone.

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Neato Botvac Connected

neato botvac connectedNeato is a company that I think falls far underneath the shadow of iRobot and it really is not due to their lack of trying. If anything, whenever a competitor to iRobot’s Roomba series is mentioned, not many people can think of one, but to me, Neato stands out.

Their Botvac Connected robotic vacuum is an interesting model in a market that is ever-expanding upon the functionality of how these vacuums work. Unlike the circular shape of the Roomba series, Neato’s series of vacuums take on a more square approach, making corners much easier to clean, which I always found fascinating and helpful.

Programmable with Wi-Fi

The standout feature of the Botvac is its ability to be programmed from virtually anywhere with its Wi-Fi capabilities. You will also receive notifications of the Botvac’s time spent cleaning and when it is done and returning to its charging dock.

While some other forms of technology have implemented this aspect, such as lights or even doors with their locks, it is interesting to see Neato put this particular spin onto one of their robotic vacuums. If anything, programming the Botvac to clean while you are out of the house is honestly a really great feature.

LaserSmart Navigation

One thing that really is interesting to me about the Botvac is how agile it is when cleaning a room. Some of the robotic vacuums have had a tough time navigating a room, getting stuck under furniture or simply being unable to circumvent a table.

The Botvac does not have any issues with navigation and in fact, has a precise LaserSmart navigation system which automatically detects what is around it. Not to mention it features a turbo suction mode which allows it to pick up dirt, pet hair, and anything else rather easily.

User Issues

Even with all of its technologic advancements in the world of vacuuming, some users had an issue with the Botvac shutting down after a while. One user, in particular, said that a system update from Neato cause the Botvac to not function properly and that it would not turn on and just displayed errors.

Others have said that the Wi-Fi connection is not the strongest, which is true of any product if it is far enough away from the source, but if the vacuum solely relies on a Wi-Fi connection, then I see how this could be a bit of an issue for most users.

Conclusion

Still, I cannot knock Neato as the Botvac Connected is a strong competitor to many of the robotic vacuum cleaners out there. The Wi-Fi feature can be a blessing or a curse for some users, but I just happen to think that being able to program it from far away is a great feature.

There is also the much-improved navigation system that a lot of other automatic vacuums seem to lack, or at least have not capitalized on. While it did not earn my top spot on this list, the Botvac Connected is still a vacuum worth checking out.

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bObi Pet Robotic

bobsweep bobi pet robotic bObsweep is one of the newer companies on the block so they may not be all too popular, but nevertheless, their bObi Pet Robotic Vacuum Cleaner is one that I think may surprise a lot of users. The bObi Pet, in particular, is known to be one of the more prevalent pet hair vacuums on the market, as indicated by the name, especially when factoring in other robotic vacuums.

Not only does the bObi Pet clean-up pet hair, but it also gets paw prints and anything that may be left behind from a pet such as dirt. For being a pet vacuum first, the bObi Pet definitely is an intriguing option on the vacuum market.

5-in-1 Cleaning Feature

The bObi Pet offers a 5-in-1 cleaning feature that can do everything from sweeping to mopping to even UV sterilization. This compact vacuum also has a HEPA filtration system making sure that any allergens brought in by pets or otherwise, are easily swept up.

I find the 5-in-1 feature to be a bit of a high selling point because a versatile vacuum is something that definitely makes cleaning a lot simpler, especially when you can program it.

Long Life and Good Navigation

Out of all the robotic vacuums I have reviewed so far (apart from the Roomba 980), the bObi Pet offers the longest lasting life at one hour and 30 minutes and then goes to recharge. This is by far one of the best features of the bObi as not many of its competitors can say the same.

In addition, it also can navigate rooms extremely well as it features around 80 touch sensors and has multi-tier brushes, which can reach corners and generally harder places to reach. Despite being circular like most of the robotic vacuum models, the bObi has no issue with getting to areas that it regularly would not fit into as its brushes do the job.

User Issues

Even though the bObi Pet has generally positive reviews, some users did find problems along the way. One user said that they were a bit skeptical of the navigation ability of the bObi Pet, saying that it had a hard time returning to its charging station.

Other users have had issues with its suction ability either not working enough or working too much to where the bObi was getting clogged and the brushes needed constantly cleaned.

Conclusion

The bObi Pet still impresses me and I have to give credit to bObsweep in general for creating a well-received product in such a short amount of time. This robotic vacuum may not have swept its way to the top, but it still earns a stamp of approval from me.

While it may not be as big named as the Roomba or Neato series, it still packs a punch and the long-lasting battery life is one of the best features about it. All in all, I recommend you give the bObi Pet a try, especially if you are like me and are having to constantly clean up after your pets.

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Crenova Robot

crenova robotCrenova presents an interesting robot vacuum cleaner as the company is known for an assortment of products with vacuums not necessarily being up there. Regardless, the Crenova Robot vacuum is one that has definitely gained some attention as it currently has an impressive average star rating on Amazon.

The vacuum’s core features rely on its navigation ability as it has multiple sensors that allow it to circumvent obstacles all along its path. Many robotic vacuums sometimes lack the ability to navigate very well, but it seems the Crenova vacuum can do just that.

4-in-1 Cleaning Feature

The suction power behind the Crenova vacuum is pretty powerful, sitting at 1200pa. This vacuum works easily on tile and carpet and provides a 4-in-1 cleaning capability. The 4-in-1 includes multiple brushes, a HEPA filtration system, vacuuming, and UV sterilizing.

Not to mention, the Crenova vacuum has five cleaning modes which help it create an optimal path as it goes from room to room in a household. There is a lot of force behind the suction of the Crenova and with all of the nooks and crannies that are tied into such as the 4-in-1 and optimal navigation system, it is no wonder this vacuum made the list.

Quiet Operation and Invisible Wall

Despite being a robotic vacuum, the Crenova vacuum is extremely quiet, sitting at 55dB. Many vacuums, and especially robotic vacuums, still have an issue with their noise level, but this vacuum has figured it out, making sure that if you are home and it is cleaning, that it does not disturb you.

In addition to how quietly it works, it also has an invisible wall that is used to determine where the walls in the room are along with valuable objects so that it does not run into them. Now that is truly smart technology.

User Issues

However, with the good comes the bad and Crenova is unfortunately not immune to faults. Many of the complaints about Crenova’s vacuum are that it struggles with returning to its charging dock. Despite this vacuum featuring a lot smarter technology, it seems to have issues with something that should be so basic to a robotic vacuum.

crenova robot underneathOther complaints mentioned that the vacuum’s dirt collector would not open and others said that it would come out of its dock for a few minutes before flashing lights would appear, more than likely indicating an issue with the power.

Conclusion

Crenova is not a company I really expected to hop onto the robotic vacuum market. With some of the bigger names out there, it may surprise you that their vacuum made it onto my list. The Crenova vacuum has a lot of nifty features like the 4-in-1 cleaning capability and its navigation that is mainly guided by sensors inside of it.

The complaints that mentioned the vacuum not being able to find its dock can be concerning, but I am sure this issue will be worked out. All in all, for the price, the Crenova vacuum is not too bad of a deal when pitted against bigger brand names.

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Eufy RoboVac 11

eufy robovac 11Eufy is perhaps one of the most overlooked vacuum companies out there, but they still continue to put out quality products. Their RoboVac 11 is just the latest example of some of the fine handiwork at Eufy.

The RoboVac 11 offers many great features and like most robotic vacuum cleaners, it makes cleaning so much easier for you. Its build is similar to most of its competitors as it has a more circular shape, but that does not stop it from reaching into corners and many of the harder to reach areas around your home.

Impressive Battery Life

The battery of the RoboVac 11 is rather impressive as it can deliver over one and a half hours of constant suction. Much like the Roomba 980, the RoboVac 11 sits near the top for battery life, meaning you will get a consistent performance out of the vacuum.

The suction power of the RoboVac 11 is actually quite good with it having two side brushes along with a motorized brush. This allows the RoboVac 11 to get into corners and similar areas despite its circular build. In fact, the RoboVac 11 has four different cleaning modes, all of which can either focus on a problem area or sweep the entirety of a room.

Good Navigation System

Navigation is primarily seen as a two-way street, either it will clean with no issues, or it may turn around from an area so that it does not get stuck. Unlike some other models that may try to jam their way into an area, the RoboVac 11 navigates itself away from potential areas where it may not fit, so that it can go on its way to clean another section of the room.

This to me says a lot about how well the navigation system was put together by Eufy, which is very impressive to me.

User Issues

One complaint I have seen against the RoboVac 11 is that it does not have much of a strategy when it cleans. Despite it being able to clean flooring effectively, some users said that the vacuum would clean for a few minutes and go back to its charging dock, or that it would become seemingly lost in the room.

eufy robovac-11-underneathOther users said that the RoboVac 11 gets stuck time and time again, which I find interesting since Eufy claims that their vacuum can navigate around furniture.

Conclusion

The RoboVac 11 is relatively cheap and is a solid option for most homes. The rise of robotic vacuums is always expanding and for a company that does extremely well with most of their models, I would recommend checking out Eufy.

The navigation issues aside, the RoboVac 11 has an incredibly long lasting life which is a plus for me and its many brushes also are another positive in my book as it allows a user to be able to clean harder to reach areas. Even though it is not at the top of my list, this vacuum is definitely one I think could always use some more recognition.

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Choosing a Robotic Vacuum Cleaner

When it comes to robotic vacuums, there are a lot of questions that arise. Many users wonder exactly how effective they are when compared to traditional vacuums, which is a valid question.

One thing to keep in mind with robotic vacuums is that their technology is expanding and we are eventually going to see models that are much more improved than what is out on the market now. That said, there are a ton of great options to choose from now, and hopefully, some of these pointers can help you out if you are thinking about purchasing a robotic vacuum.

Do You Have Pets?

cat on a robotic vacuumPets are typically one of the biggest reasons why some people prefer to get a robotic vacuum. Since these vacuums can be easily programmed to work at a specific time a day, or manually programmed, it makes it easy to have a cleaner home.

Robotic vacuums are typically really good about picking up a lot of pet hair, so one may be worth considering if you have multiple pets or one that sheds often. Even if you do not have a pet, this is not to say that a robotic vacuum is something you should ignore.

For most people, the convenience of having something else, such as an automated vacuum, do the cleaning while they are gone either at work, the store, vacation, or wherever, make these a big seller.

How often are You Cleaning the Vacuum?

robot vacuum clean underneathThe one thing to consider about robotic vacuums is that they are quite obviously much smaller than traditional vacuums. With this, the robotic vacuums may need to be cleaned more often than not as they cannot hold as much. Even though this can be a bit of an annoyance, I find it to be a small trade-off considering all the work the robotic vacuums put in.

If you do end up purchasing one, just be sure to clean it often, maybe once every few days, so that it avoids clogging. These vacuums will clog easily if they are not maintained, so it is important to stay on top of them to avoid issues.

Is Furniture an Issue?

As the technology increases for robotic vacuums, so do the navigational skills behind them. The common issue most people have with robotic vacuums is that they can and will get stuck either under a couch or between the legs of chairs at a table, but many vacuums now are built to circumvent their way around furniture.

However, if you have a lot of furniture in a more enclosed space, this could potentially be an issue for one of these vacuums as it may not have much room to work with. If they continually get stuck, this may be an issue with the navigation system of the vacuum, or it could just not have enough room to operate. Making sure the vacuum’s pathway is clear is one important step for a successful cleaning.

How Much are You Willing to Pay?

money in piggy bankThe price of robotic vacuums does seem to fluctuate at times, but for the most part, the more expensive models do have a longer battery life along with many other great features. That said, you do not have to overpay in order to get a quality vacuum and most of these vacuums are priced in a way that is not too unaffordable.

Read More: Cheaper vacuums that perform well

Again, with something like this, you are investing in a product that should hopefully last you a long time, keeping in mind you making sure it is operating as normal. The one downside to automatic vacuums is that they do require more supervision than if you were manually using a vacuum, but it all depends on whether or not the money spent is worth the investment in your opinion. Just my two cents, these vacuums make cleaning so much easier, especially when I am not home a lot of the time.

Do You Need any Special Features?

roomba accessoriesSometimes robotic vacuums will feature anywhere from 3-in-1 to 5-in-1 cleaning components which usually mean they have a ton of different options for how you want your floor cleaned. Usually, these options go between vacuuming, sometimes mopping, HEPA filtration, and sterilization. That said, others come with handy brushes that are useful in areas where a robotic vacuum may be limited due to its size constraints.

The more special features a robotic vacuum has, the chances are it will be more expensive. Even still, if you do plan on buying one, I would think that it the robotic vacuum can easily take over a traditional vacuum cleaner.

Does Shape Matter to You?

The one problem many users find is that the robotic vacuum they bought has a tough time reaching corners or specific areas of their homes. Some of these vacuums are built in a circular fashion, while others are more of a square shape. Both builds have their advantages while some can reach corners and others can navigate a little easier.

In the end, it really comes down to personal preference. If you already take care of your corners with another type of cleaner, then maybe the circular type of robotic vacuum is the way to go, otherwise, a square shape may be your best bet.

Good Alternative to Traditional Vacuums

dyson dc25 ballAll in all, I hope that these questions and considerations were able to help you out in regards to robotic vacuums. They are still in a sense, growing, and I think that is something important to keep in mind if you do plan on purchasing one.

The vacuums themselves are pretty solid builds and easily compete with traditional vacuums no problem. If anything, it comes down to which type of vacuum you would prefer overall. Some people like being able to be in charge of what they are doing with the vacuum, while others would rather just push a few buttons and have the cleaning done automatically.

There is no wrong answer when it comes to robotic vacuums; all that these vacuums do is present an alternative method to cleaning.

Final Thoughts

irobot roomba 980 is my top pickRobotic vacuums are slowly, but surely, making their way into more homes across the globe. These vacuums are effective and fast, making it easy for the user to sit back and relax while the vacuum does all the work.

When looking at my list, I have to say that iRobot’s Roomba 980 is the king of the hill when compared to its competition. There were many features I liked about it that it is hard to just pick one, but the 120 minutes of battery life was a big seller to me.

Prior Roomba models struggled with navigating through multiple rooms, but the 980 easily cleans an entire level of my home. This makes cleaning so much more effective and with its AeroForce cleaning system that has up to 10x the suction force of other models, I have yet to see any issues with the 980 not performing up to its standard.

For your convenience, here’s a link to the top-selling robot vacuum cleaners on Amazon.

The other robotic vacuums on this list are definitely worth checking out as they are all solid models. To me though, nothing compared to the 980, but if you feel that it may be out of your price range, any of the other vacuums on this list I can definitely recommend.

In fact, you may prefer the Neato or bObi to the Roomba and that is completely fine; there is no wrong answer when it comes to this list in the long run as each and every one of these vacuums are ranked high for a good reason.

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