The vacuum cleaner robot industry is growing, attracting attention from major brands, each of which has developed a vacuum robot of its own. The market has blossomed from only one vacuum cleaner robot option to a multitude of models every year, each with its own set of features.
This can create confusion when trying to choose the right model for yourself. Here are some important considerations when purchasing your vacuum robot.
There are two main types of robots: those that move through the room with an intelligent but random method of navigation, and those that navigate through the home methodically, learning the configuration of your home and where exactly to go.
For robots like the Hom-Bot and Neato brands that use methodical navigation, they will operate autonomously for a period of about one hour to one hour and forty minutes. Meaning that the robot will clean about 100 square meters in a single one-hour cycle. Homes that are more congested with furniture or that have a lot of carpet or rugs will use the battery power of the vacuum faster.
The navigational robots usually have an advantage, because if they are mid-course and the battery level gets low, they can return to their home base, recharge, and pick up right where they left off in the course of the vacuuming. Some models may be able to perform this function twice consecutively, allowing them to cover an area of up to 250 square meters.
The downside is that when a robot vacuum must perform this way, the battery tends to wear out faster. The upside is that the cleaning time will be faster, and you’ll know that the robot has gotten the entire area done.
Cleaning Cycle Autonomy
Vacuum cleaner robots that use random navigation, such as Roomba, have an autonomy of one to three hours. This varies depending on the model. You can expect a robot like this to effectively vacuum a surface up to 60 square feet in one pass, although this will vary depending on the robot’s intelligence. Unfortunately, the random navigation robots will take more time to clean your surface area when compared with methodical navigation robots.
For areas beyond 60 square meters, there is only one choice of random navigation robot: the Roomba 780. Its virtual walls and advanced navigation algorithm allow for a little more surface area to be covered. If you want to look at reviews – check them here.
Bars Of Thresholds And Carpets
The bars that mark doorway thresholds and the beginning or end of carpets can be an obstacle to some robot vacuums. Most vacuum cleaners can overcome obstacles of 1.5 cm in height, and most of the bars are lower than this.
However, it’s important to take note that not all robot vacuums can do this, and you need to check a vacuum’s specifications in order to make sure that it can handle that height.
Central Brush And Bearings Maintenance
Most vacuum cleaner robots require little maintenance. You simply empty the dust trap, check for any wear on the parts, and maintain the brushes. Brush maintenance is important because hairs and lint get trapped in the bristles with each use, and need to be removed if you want your vacuum to operate efficiently.
Some robots are easier to clean and maintain than others. Some brushes have hairs that need maintenance more often than others that are made of laminated plastic. Some models may make accessing the brush difficult. Expect maintenance times that vary from a few seconds to five minutes per week.
Dust Tray Capacity
The robot dust tray capacity can range from .4 l to 2.04 l for models that have an additional bin at the base, like the Navibot 8980 and the Deepoo D76. For homes with animals or large surfaces to cover, it’s important to choose a vacuum with the largest dust tray capacity possible.
Robots have on-board detectors that help them navigate around obstacles, but these can vary in delicacy or efficiency.
Some robots will stop a few millimeters before hitting an obstacle, while others will slow down before impact, but still make contact with the obstacle. All the vacuums will have trouble “seeing” obstacles like a chair, but this won’t diminish their overall ability to perform the job.
Some robots come with a “virtual wall” or a magnetic strip that deters them from entering a particular area. This is ideal if you have fragile objects or don’t want the robot to enter a certain area.
If you are prone to allergies, you may want to consider a model that comes with a HEPA filter. A HEPA filter can filter out microscopic particles up to 0.3 microns, to minimize the amount of dust that gets into the air.
This will help minimize allergens, but it does require regular cleaning and changing of the filter in order to keep performing this function well.
By using these guidelines, you’ll be able to decide which features are most important to you, and determine the right type of robot vacuum cleaner to suit your home and your needs.