Many robovac-enthusiasts will tell you what models to buy.
But rarely would anyone warn you which robot vacuums to avoid.
I think this discussion is just as important as the other.
So, let’s tackle the unpopular topic of the worst robovacs you could buy today.
Continue reading to find out:
- 5 bad robot vacuums you should avoid at all costs.
- The specific reasons each of these robot vacuums suck.
- My top robovac recommendations for maximizing budget or value.
- And much, much more…
5 robot vacuums to avoid
I’ve never really had big expectations for this model.
After all, it only costs $55. Which is about a quarter of the average price of most budget-friendly robovacs.
However, since most regular vacuums are decent at this price range…
I, at least, expected this device to improve my floor’s cleanliness.
But unfortunately, this robovac miserably fails all the tasks you’d expect a vacuum to do.
Let’s get into the specifics with these…
3 bad aspects of the PUCRC15 vacuum:
No suction motor
It’s common knowledge that vacuums suction dirt off hard surfaces.
But oddly, this machine can’t even do this bare minimum action.
See, the PUCRC15 robot doesn’t have a suction motor.
And the way it cleans your floor is by sweeping the surface with brushes.
Rather than using a motor to suction dirt as other vacuums do.
Can’t move on top of carpets
Unsurprisingly, most low-end robovacs can’t clean soft surfaces.
But this is the first machine I’ve tested that won’t even move on top of carpets.
Let alone clean them.
No cliff sensors
Add your stairs and this robot vacuum together.
And what you’ll get is your $50 down the drain.
See, this vacuum doesn’t have a cliff sensor.
So, it won’t even try to move away from your stairs. Which could quickly end its existence.
Robovacs are also called smart vacuums.
These machines aren’t always as intelligent as you’d expect them to be.
This VAVA Autopilot 2nd Gen vacuum shows precisely why this is the case.
Now, don’t get me wrong. This model also has its pros, which include:
- Large dust bin capacity.
- Decent carpet-cleaning performance.
- 2 hours of battery life on a full charge.
- Efficient debris removal thanks to its high suction power.
However, all of these lose their impact when you start encountering the…
2 unfortunate flaws of this robot vacuum:
Bad exhaust placement
Imagine trying to sweep up hair or fur.
But instead of turning OFF the fan as most people would…
You purposely blow the debris away from your brush.
Sounds absurd, I know.
This imaginary scenario perfectly depicts what this VAVA robovac does when vacuuming.
See, this device has terrible exhaust placement.
So, it blows fur and hair away before it can even come close enough to vacuum them.
Poor floor coverage
This vacuum starts off navigating in straight back-and-forth lines.
Which is a great sign, as this is the pattern most high-end robovacs follow.
However, this navigation efficiency is only temporary.
Because when this VAVA device encounters an obstacle…
It starts to lose its way.
See, instead of continuously traveling in straight, uniform lines…
This vacuum starts navigating without any noticeable patterns after bumping into an object.
Similar to how robovacs without the smart mapping technology would.
Due to its poor floor coverage…
This robovac can’t maximize its best features. Especially its high suction power and carpet-cleaning performance.
Hence, it’s best to stay away from this vacuum.
Here’s another robot vacuum you should avoid:
Hoover BH70700 Quest.
For its price of almost $200…
You’d honestly expect this robovac to perform decently.
At least in comparison to the previous models mentioned.
However, this vacuum will only fail you like the other robovacs in this list would.
Because all its good parts are totally overshadowed by…
Its 3 disappointing flaws:
Weak suction power
The primary purpose of any vacuum is to remove dirt OFF your floor.
So, you’d want your robovac to have a high suction power.
Because this value shows how efficient vacuums are at sucking debris.
Now, the brand Hoover doesn’t explicitly say what their BH70700’s model suction power is.
But after I compared this device to my other robovacs…
It’s safe to assume that the Hoover Quest’s suction power is only around 1200 Pa.
Because it performed worse than my Eufy robovac, which had 1500 Pa.
If you get this device…
You’ll still see specks of dust on your floor. Even after your robovac finishes cleaning.
So, it’s best to stay away from it.
Interesting fact: Suction power is 1 of the main differences between robotic and regular vacuums. The maximum suction power of robovacs is only 3000 Pa. In comparison, even low-quality handheld vacuums have 8000 Pa.
Gets stuck everywhere
It’s not uncommon for robot vacuums to get stuck.
Because even high-end models like the Roomba s9 are prone to doing so.
However, this Hoover model is extra notorious for being stuck consistently.
Even in places you wouldn’t expect it to be.
See, this robovac’s wheels are terribly designed.
So, it even gets stuck when transitioning between a hard floor and a carpet. Or within spacious gaps that other robovacs won’t have a problem navigating around.
Runs in circles
Remember how I said the previous robovac was bad at navigating your floor?
Well, this model from Hoover is worse at doing so.
Because it usually circles around the same zone or area.
And won’t move elsewhere unless you manually pick it up and place it in another room.
At first glance, this Ziglint robot seems like a big steal for only $150.
It has a decent compact build that doesn’t feel cheap.
And with its 1800 Pa suction power…
This budget robovac removes debris better than other models in its price range.
However, its pros pretty much end there because…
The D5 robot vacuum has these 3 flaws:
Shuts off on top of rugs
Carpets collect more dust than hard floors do.
So, most people spend extra time vacuuming them.
And if you do the same…
Then, this D5 robot vacuum should definitely not be on your buying list.
Because it usually shuts off on top of rugs. Especially dark-colored ones.
The brand explained that this is due to the built-in anti-collision feature of the robovac.
But most robot vacuums with the same technology don’t have this issue. Hence, you should just avoid this D5 model.
Flawed mapping feature
This robovac often cleans through the same space repeatedly.
Even if it has the smart mapping feature that’s supposed to stop it from doing so.
And what good comes from a robovac that can’t clean your whole floor, right?
Can’t find its own way home
You’d need to play a game of hide and seek every time this device finishes cleaning.
Because it won’t find its own way back to its home base.
Even when it’s programmed to do so.
#5: Neato D8
I’m a huge fan of the brand Neato.
But honestly, the release of its D8 robovac was slightly a disappointment.
Now, don’t get me wrong.
Unlike the previous models mentioned…
This D8 model isn’t too bad. And it’s still a decent vacuum.
However, you should avoid getting this robot at all costs.
Because the features you get aren’t worth this vacuum’s price.
Wanna know why? Here are….
2 reasons the Neato D8 isn’t worth its price:
Prone to getting stuck
You already know that robovacs are prone to get stuck.
But for a model that costs $400…
This Neato D8 gets stuck way more often than you’d expect it to.
The primary cause of this problem is the robovac’s unique shape.
Specifically, it’s not completely circular as other models are.
Hence, its edges easily get caught by furniture.
Short battery life
Remember when I said I love the brand Neato?
Well, 1 of the main reasons was their robovacs’ long battery life.
Because most Neato models’ average operation time ranges between 120-150 minutes.
Unfortunately, though, the D8 falls short in this category.
After all, it also stays ON for 100 minutes when fully charged.
And that’s a huge battery life gap from the D10’s 150 minutes of operation time.
Editor’s pick: How Often Should You Run Your Robot Vacuum? 5 Facts
Robot vacuum recommendations
By now, you know which vacuums to avoid.
So, it’s time to get to the more interesting part:
Knowing which robovacs are actually worth your money.
Let me introduce you to the 2 best robot vacuums I’ve used over the years.
Best for budget: iRobot Roomba 675
iRobot is 1 of the most respected companies in the cleaning robots industry.
And undoubtedly, the brand deserves its reputation.
Here’s 1 of the many reasons:
iRobot’s Roomba 675 is the best robovac you can buy on a tight budget.
See, this device only costs $250, yet it has:
- Scheduled vacuuming.
- Patented 3-stage cleaning that picks up even the smallest particles.
- Stable compatibility with the iRobot Home app and voice commands.
Plus, it also barely gets stuck when cleaning.
So, you won’t need to babysit this robovac as it vacuums your floor.
Want to know more about the Roomba 675?
Watch this detailed review:
You might also be interested: 5 Reasons Roomba Vacuum Cleaners Are Round (Guide)
Best for value: Sharks’s AI robot vacuum with base
If you want to get the best returns for your money’s worth…
You can’t go wrong with getting this robovac from Shark.
This AI robot has a Matrix Clean Navigation system.
So, it effectively removes both big and fine debris from your floor.
Moreover, it also has a self-emptying base.
Hence, this robovac can keep vacuuming for 2 months before needing your assistance.
On top of these features, this AI robot also:
- Vacuums for 2 hours straight.
- Picks up where it left off after recharging.
- Follows voice commands through Alexa or Google Assistant.
And there’s really nothing more you can ask from a robovac.
So, this AI robot is the best model you could get for your money.