Are the new roombas worth It?

The wife wants a roomba. I see they are like $500!? Seems expensive for a vacuum cleaner. Does anyone have one of these? Do you like it? Does it do the job? Or did you buy it and 6 months later it’s unused?. We have a relatively large room that is about 600 sq ft, will it handle that?

I’m also seeing a lot of talk and marketing material with it on hardwood floors. Does it not work so well on carpets?

NOT worth it IMO. We have hardwood floors with large carpets in 3 areas of our open-plan first floor. We bought a bObi model. I hardly ever use it after 6 months. It goes around in a totally random fashion with no rhyme or reason. You’d think it’d travel in a straight-ish line until it hits an obstacle, but that’s not what happens. It just meanders and zigzags about and with an open-plan layout it’s pretty useless. It also has a very tiny collection area that needs to be emptied within 15 minutes. It needs to be re-charged quite often AND it gets stuck at the edge of every carpet where it beeps until you rescue it. I guess it might be useful if you could put it into a closed room perhaps, one with all hardwood floors or wall-to-wall carpeting. But honestly, the time it would take to actually cover the whole room even if it did move in some kind of organized pattern is just not worth it. I can run the vacuum much quicker.

For hardwood floors, we LOVE our Hoover wind tunnel air cordless vac. It has 2 rechargeable batteries that you just swap out easily. It’s VERY lightweight and is the best for wood floors! I even bought one for my mom!

We run ours nearly every day, in one room or another. A decent high end one, which the OP seems to have, will handle 600 sq feet with no trouble - though it might fill up before if the room is very dirty.

It travels in funny patterns to cover the entire room, even if there are obstacles. No way that would be easy to accomplish if it went in a straight line.
We have a Golden Retriever who sheds a dog’s worth of hair every day, so we have a pet model. I figured out we needed that after she blew out our first cheap one. But this one has been good, though I take it apart every so often to clean out hair that has gotten into the workings. Just a few screws - very easy. They have gotten a lot more reliable since our first one also.

Negatives - you still have to vacuum walls and ceilings and corners it can’t get into, and anyplace too small for it to get under. But it does under beds really well. We run it both on carpet and hardwood floors - and tile - and it works fine for all of them.

Just a suggestion: if you do buy one, use it only when you are not at home.
If you actually watch it while it works, even for just a minute or two…it drives you crazy.

The damn thing moves in totally random patterns, with no logic whatsoever. It doesnt just zig-zag a bit–it jerks around in spasms, often covers the exact same small spot 5 , 10, or 15 times back and forth before suddenly moving on 3 feet to the left and leaving a huge area uncovered, then for no reason goes back to that area for a single swipe, still leaving most of it uncovered, until 10 minutes later it goes back for another swipe, etc.

And it scares the bejezus out of the cat. :slight_smile:

The point of a robot vacuum isn’t that it’s fast—it isn’t. But since it plugs away on its own unsupervised, that doesn’t really matter. I’ve had a Roomba for a month and I like it a lot. I still have a few cables and such to secure so I can just tell it to go do its thing when I’m away a few times a week.

I’m on my third one. It’s not my only vacuum, because frankly, there are times when I need the job done quickly and it’s not a fast clean. I have combination large area fringed carpets and hardwood throughout my home.

What I love about it is the deep cleaning it does compared to my other vacuum. I can do a decent twice-over with my upright vacuum, and the Roomba used immediately afterward gets a lot more dirt out. It also delicately maneuvers over the fringe without tangling, I can’t achieve that with the “beater bar” of the upright.

It’s expensive, but I would recommend it.

My parents got me a Neato Botvac for christmas, and so far I’m very happy with it. It can clean my entire ~1400 sq foot apartment (mostly hardwoods and tile, with a few area rugs). And if I run it 2-3 times per week it doesn’t have any trouble with the hair output of two cats (one short hair, one long).

Unlike the Roomba, the Botvac has a fairly smart mapping and navigation system. It’ll map and clean the perimeter of a room and all the furniture and obstacles within, and then do neat back-and-forth passes over the open areas. It also seems to map the doorways, and when one room is complete it’ll go straight for the next room. It has a hard time navigating tightly packed rooms though, basically whenever there’s more perimeter than open space.

(That’s not to say that the drunken-sailor Roomba won’t do the job. It will, but it won’t be very efficient, and if you watch it you’ll go nuts.)

So far I’ve been running it when I’m in the apartment, since I have to do a bit of pre-cleaning to pick up all the clutter on the floor. But that’s like 10-20 min that I can do while the Botvac is working on the first room. I still don’t use it in the office because there’s more cords than I care to bundle up and tuck away neatly, and a few bits of furniture with a metal tube base that the Botvac gets hung up on.

If I was buying one myself I probably wouldn’t pay $500 for a new one at full price, but I would get one on sale for $350 or perhaps a previous year’s model on clearance.

About the cleaning method - I’ve written several programs to do stuff that people do, and I’ve noted that the program does the job, but does it in a way a person would never do it. So I don’t get frustrated at its method, but try to figure out the algorithm. I must admit that I have better things to do than watch it - we put it in a room and close the door or put up the virtual wall, and do things other places.
It always does a good job by the remaining dog hair metric.

We had a first generation roomba, and with dogs and my own long hair, we found it took as long to clean the hair wrapped around the brush as it did to just sweep the floor. Are the new pet models brushless?

I bought one (about two generations ago) and never used it. I Gave it away to someone who gave it back because they never used it. Gave it to someone else. they still have it, but I don’t know if they use it. It worked ok, but it often would not get on the area carpets (it bumped into the edge and turned away).

This is all SO true and made me laugh! Maybe it’s also an issue with my open plan house - I set the thing down in the kitchen because that’s what I want cleaned, and it spasms around and ends up 2 rooms away 5 minutes later! Drives me crazy. And I can’t run it when I’m not home because it gets stuck on the edge of every carpet and beeps forever. And the cats hate it.