Top 10 Auto Vacuums (April 2018): Reviews & Buyers Guide

In the past few years, auto or robot vacuum cleaners have gone from a novelty or gimmick that looked good on paper but when it came to actually cleaning your rooms fell far short of the mark, to decently reliable additions to many households. An auto vacuum is a type of vacuum cleaner you can program to clean when you’re out of the house, seated on the sofa watching TV, or indeed doing anything more interesting than the vacuuming- which is most things, let’s face it. An automatic vacuum cleaner is supposed to vacuum almost as well as a human, which is true these days. Nobody’s designed one with automated arms to do the difficult spots, but you just wait!

Now they are actually a viable technology, though it was not so long ago when we used to clean our floors without a vacuum. At The Soothing Air, we have decided to compile this list for you lovely readers to help you make sense of the market for auto vacuum cleaners. There is a lot on offer and a lot of it is less than good, so in order to stop you tearing out your hair at the bewildering choices on offer, or buying an automated vacuum that doesn’t actually clean anything, here is our best auto vacuum list.

But Why Should You Trust Us?

Why indeed? Well, we think you should trust us because we’re nice guys. But you don’t know that, and you need more than that anyway, so here are a few more reasons.

We’ve been reviewing vacuums and auto vacuums for years. Our job is to review stuff, that’s what we do and it’s what we do best. So the topic of vacuum cleaners has come up a few times and we think we’ve got a good idea of how to tell a good one from bad and find the best auto vacuum.

This time around, we tested more than 70 auto vacuums. That is a lot of vacuuming, I can tell you. You should see our offices. Spotless. The floors anyway! In total, we have spent about 60 hours conducting research with our dedicated team and, with our community of volunteers and testers, have trimmed the mighty 70 auto vacuums to a top ten.

What we don’t do here is promote any specific brand or product. That is not our game, it isn’t how we make a living. We review products, give balanced and unbiased views on what we review, and publish the results for you. Facts lead our investigations, so we are going to end up with the best products.

And we did, we think. Read on to find our best auto vacuum list, but first:

What is an Auto Vacuum?

More excellent questions! An automated vacuum is an indoor room cleaning robot designed to work autonomously to vacuum and (in some cases) mop your floors. It is one of the many types of vacuums that can be found on the market. Some have highly developed air filters to remove allergens while they clean, and they all have a range of sensors that tell them where they are and what they are cleaning.

Very simple models will just suck up dirt as they roam around your house, others can build a 3D model of your house and use it to calibrate their cleaning to be as efficient as possible. Advanced models can detect hard flooring and mop and clean them, as well as vacuuming.

Most models can be programmed to turn on at certain times, so they can clean when you’re out or in a different room. They should be able to find their way back to their charging station when they are out of charge or are full.

It might say that their suction power is equivalent to a handheld upright vacuum, but they aren’t, in our experience. So you might not get the deep clean you are used to. They are very effective, however, so don’t be put off. The best auto vacuum will do the job.

What to Consider When Buying an Auto Vacuum?

There’s a lot to take in when you’re looking at a robot vacuum, so relax and let us take you through what to look for.

Firstly, we like to look at the price. If you know how much you’re willing to spend, this will narrow your choices a great deal.

Then the capabilities of the auto vacuum: what is its cleaning process? Can it clean as well as vacuum? Does it have a high level of suction? How much dirt can it suck up before you need to empty or recharge it?

Programmability is crucial: can you set this thing up so it will work with minimal input? How easy is it to program and can it learn for itself how to clean your home to the best of its ability?

Any good auto cleaner has a low profile that allows it to get under sofas and chairs. It should have a shape (generally circular) that allows it to reach corners and awkward spots and clean them properly.

When looking at the potential performance of your auto vacuum, look for the battery life. This is the limiting factor with an auto vacuum. How much it can vacuum and for how long is completely dependent on the size and quality of the battery.

Automatic charging is essential with an auto vacuum, you don’t want to be picking it up and taking it back to the charging point because it ran out halfway through. All sorts of frustrations can abound without auto-charging.

Can it handle more than one room without emptying or recharging? Is that suitable for where you’re living? All good to consider.

Quality of the sensors is essential. These vacuums don’t have eyes like us, they have mini cameras that feed a constant stream of information to the computer onboard to let them navigate the world. Poor sensors mean bad navigation and therefore bad cleaning. Better sensors are more expensive, generally.

If you’re a sufferer of allergens or have a respiratory condition, definitely look for HEPA filters. These will, if you didn’t already know, filter the air of allergens down to 0.3 microns and save a lot of sniffles or worse.

Other factors to look for are wireless connection (wifi or Bluetooth), voice recognition, integration with home systems like Alexa or Google. Smartphone controllable auto vacuums are really the way forward, set it cleaning when you’re out just with a press of a button. So handy if you have guests coming and forgot to have a tidy up.

Who are Auto Vacuums For?

Auto vacuums have graduated from a cool gadget to being a normal part of many people’s household tool collection. They’re versatile and reliable enough these days that they can be used by basically anybody. Families with young children, pet owners, professionals who are out of the house a lot; basically, if you have floors and like them clean, an auto vacuum could be the choice for you.

For those with disabilities or the elderly, they can be a real lease of life. Pushing a vacuum around might be too difficult for some, so being able to program your vacuum to clean with little or no input could make a huge difference.

We all want a tidy and clean home, that doesn’t change when you get old or suffer from disabilities, and now there are the tools that can help you keep your independence.

Modern life is busy. Many of us don’t have the time to give the house the clean we really should be giving it. I certainly don’t. A quick tap on a smartphone and you know your robot vacuum cleaner is doing its thing while you’re out. Of course, you still have to do some cleaning to get the bits it can’t get to, but you have a much-reduced workload and less stress to boot.

Kids are endlessly messy, this is a universal truth. The amount of mess they create is hard to believe sometimes. With an auto vacuum, you just have to make sure the big bits are off the floor and you can just let it get on with getting up the crumbs, popcorn, hair, mud and whatever else your little darling has so considerately sprayed everywhere. That means you can spend more quality time with them. Or do the ironing, washing, fixing, whatever else is on your list. Auto vacuums are very parent-friendly, so get your vacuum considering some crucial factors.

How We Picked and Tested

Our exhaustive reviewing process here at instantgrooming.com has been developed over a number of years to the point where we are very satisfied we get the best out of our reviews, and your feedback tells us we’re doing the right thing.

Firstly, to find the best robot vacuum cleaner we sent our team of volunteers out to find as many auto vacuums as they possibly could, and they came back with more than 70! Slightly overwhelmed, we trimmed this down by weeding out the clearly terrible vacuums and comparing similar ones to find the best in that group.

We enjoyed watching these mini vacuums learn about their environment and go crashing into things, or look totally confused by a spare sock left in the middle of the floor. We could tell how well a machine would clean by how well it explored the space around it.

We tested around 50 ourselves, and while none we found was perfect, there were some really good ones. We used our comparison and testing data to establish what were the important factors a customer would care about, and that’s how we ended up with the best 10.

When we were looking for important factors we could compare our subjects with, we found that the quality of building materials, motor specification, how advanced the cleaning technology is, filtering capability, automatic functions, programmability, wireless connection, navigation of multiple rooms, smartphone connectivity, length of battery life, the number of sensors and their quality were amongst the most important.

By comparing these, along with a number of other factors (46 in fact), we were able to make high-value comparisons and come up with the best auto vacuum list on the web.

Our Top Ten Product List:

Our analysis covered 46 of the most important features of robot vacuum cleaners, and that is a lot of data. Data you are free to view to help you choose the right product for you. To view the report we have compiled, we simply ask that readers like any of our social media pages. We hope you find the data useful!

Our Pick: iRobot Roomba 650 Robotic Vacuum Cleaner

Before we get to our review, let us spend a little time looking at how we came to choose the iRobot Roomba 650 as Our Choice.

Why we’ve chosen this product as our No.1 Pick

  1. For each product, we looked 

    Top Quality

    product

    iRobot Roomba 650 Robotic Vacuum Cleaner

    Get It On Amazon

    The very best Auto Vacuum

    At a superb price you get a quality piece of kit. The iRobot is an automatic vacuum, fully programmable with lots of neat features. An excellent choice!

    at the 46 features we thought were the best for comparison in auto vacuums. As you can probably see from our research report, this product doesn’t have the highest number of positive features. You would think that it shouldn’t be Our Choice, but it had a unique combination of features that made it, in our opinion, the best choice for our readers.
  2. It is a very easy mini vacuum to use, you just press the button and get a very thorough clean. With a 3-Stage Cleaning System, this iRobot can pick up anything, from larger debris like cereal to finer dust trapped in carpets. It also handles pet hair very well. The Roomba is programmable so you can incorporate it into your busy day and not have it get in the way. At 3.6 inches tall, this is a mini device that can get under beds, sofas, and kickboards, while being able to clean all the floor types it encounters. All this while falling in the affordable price range. For less than $337 there is no other choice.
  3. The ratings frequency for this auto vacuum was very favorable: in the first day it received 10 positive ratings, 10 more the day after and 10 more in the next 24 hours. This is a remarkable rate, not much we have ever reviewed is rated so highly so fast.
  4. The unique ability of self-adjustment to the floor type is really a remarkable feature that made it stand head and shoulders over the competition.

Detailed Review

best auto vacuum: Get the best of all!

Roombas were amongst the first practical mini auto vacuums, iRobot figured out how to make them work early on. That said, the first attempts weren’t much to write home about, they didn’t last long and they got confused very easily. Not anymore.

The iRobot Roomba 650 is a very successful auto vacuum: it actually does what it says it will. Just hit the CLEAN button and off it goes, building an internal 3d map of its environment with the iAdapt Navigation system so it can explore and clean efficiently. Or put up to 7 different cleaning times a week into the schedule and get on with your life.

It docks itself automatically and recharges itself when it is running low of power. No more finding half a room cleaned and a dead vacuum sat forlornly in the middle of the floor. It won’t fall down the stairs either, an expensive problem with early devices.

In terms of cleaning power, this is an impressive little device. It has two main cleaning brushes, making it very versatile when it comes to what surface it is cleaning. It even cleans hard floors properly, where a lot of competitors struggle. The Dirt Detect technology actually works, it identifies concentrated dirt and makes sure it’s all sucked up before it moves on. Smart.

There are some very funny reviews on the internet involving pet owners and their pet’s leavings, shall we say. If you set this mini vacuum going, make sure your pets aren’t in the same room, or they could create an incredible mess. Just a warning.

This Roomba is very well priced, for the range of features and quality of construction it is unbeatable.

Pros:

  • Great price
  • High quality construction
  • Dirt Detect technology
  • Two main cleaning brushes
  • Very highly rated
  • Automatic Charging
  • Fully programmable
  • Excellent navigation
  • Cleans all floor types successfully

Cons:

  • Doesn’t deal with excrement well at all

Verdict:

Excellent auto vacuum, well built, full of useful features and available for a very reasonable price. Powerful and versatile suction across every floor type, great navigation of environments and fully programmable. Couldn’t get better at the price.

Budget Pick: ILIFE V3s Robotic Vacuum Cleaner

Why we’ve chosen this product for our Budget Pick

Great Value

product

ILIFE V3s Robotic Vacuum Cleaner

Get It On Amazon

An affordable and quiet choice

For its price you’ll be surprised to see seem great features in the Ilife. With its remote control, anti-bump technology and auto-charging, this is a model you’ll be racing to buy!

The lowest priced auto vacuum on our list, the ILIFE V3s is by no means an inferior product. It comes with a high number of positive features and did a very effective job of cleaning during our testing. So, both on price and effectiveness, this was a fine choice for our Budget Pick.

Have a look at our research report, you’ll see that this mini marvel has the very highest level of positive features in our Top Ten list. For such a low price, this is incredible.

The rates of ratings were really high too, we looked at the most recent 30 ratings and found that the first 10 fell in the first 2 days, the next 10 in 3 days and the last 10 in just two days. This is a rate almost as good as Our Choice (see above). We find that the frequency of ratings is a very good indicator as to the quality of a product, so we always include it in our evaluations.

A remote control was a really fantastic feature on this robot vacuum, it allowed us to be even lazier when cleaning our house! Seriously though, for those with limited movement or disabilities, the remote control could save a lot of effort or pain. It automatic charges as well, making it a low maintenance machine.

Another great fact about this robot vacuum is that it is very quiet, it has a low noise function that makes it almost undetectable. A great feature that could be the decider for some.

With anti-bump technology, its low profile and very quiet operation, you can schedule this for operation even when you are asleep and shouldn’t be disturbed. Just hit the automatic clean mode and it will do its thing very successfully.

Detailed Review

best auto vacuum: Save some money with this choice!

Needless to say, we were very impressed with this mini marvel. For the price, we couldn’t quite believe it did what it did. Even the batteries lasted longer than some of the more expensive rivals.

We found it very easy to operate, with the four main modes being very clear and self-explanatory. The remote control was the real delight, however, giving us the freedom to operate the vacuum without even going near it.

For someone with mobility issues or other disabilities, this could be an essential feature. You’re still going to have to empty it, but it can be operated remotely and will auto charge, meaning it needs minimal amounts of input to operate properly.

The construction was surprisingly good, the plastic wasn’t flimsy and it didn’t rattle or squeak. Again, for the price, this is impressive. It had many of the features we’d expect from more expensive machines, like high-quality sensors and efficient software that enable the vacuum to navigate complicated environments successfully. It wasn’t as good as Our Choice, but it was close enough.

Across a variety of flooring the ILIFE V3s performed well, the sweeper was able to suck up nearly everything we put in its path. It was particularly good with pet hair, something even more expensive alternatives struggle with.

Easily programmable with a daily schedule, we found we could just leave it to its devices and it would do a very decent job of tidying our test rooms. It did a good job of avoiding obstacles and not bumping into things, as well as being very quiet, so we wouldn’t mind leaving this auto vacuum on for a nighttime clean while we’re in bed.

It came highly rated, the majority of the ratings being 5*, always a good sign to us. Lots of people were happy with it, but some reported that it didn’t last very long before dying. Some also say that it needs supervision where a more expensive rival might be able to figure it out.

Pros:

  • Very affordable
  • Remote control
  • Automatic charging
  • Anti-bump technology
  • Low profile
  • Quiet operation

Cons:

  • Some issues with durability
  • Not as powerful as some
  • Can need supervision

Verdict:

So many features packed into a well designed and constructed shell, and all for a low price, this has to be our Budget Pick, or the pick for someone who has limited mobility and needs a remote control. Some issues but not enough to put anyone on a budget off.

Advanced Pick: iRobot Roomba 980 Wi-Fi Connected Robotic Vacuum Cleaner

Why we’ve chosen this product for our Advanced Pick

Future Hoover

product

iRobot Roomba 980 Robot Vacuum

Get It On Amazon

Its light years ahead

This vacuum is super powerful, with an excellent navigation system. For technology and features that blow you away, then this is the pick for you! Quality and connectivity!

This robot vacuum is one of the most advanced on the market and has the price tag to match. It isn’t obscenely expensive, it is just more expensive than a lot of the other choices on our list. But that extra money would be well spent, we feel.

During our research (have a look for yourself, see above) we found that this product had almost the same characteristics as Our Choice, only losing out on battery life and the price. It doesn’t last as long, but it does have quick charging, so it will get your floors clean in no time. This is a serious advantage, and while it wasn’t enough to make it Our Choice, it was enough for our Advanced Pick.

Another reason this made the Advanced Pick is the iRobot HOME app, which allows you to schedule your cleans from anywhere you have internet access for your smartphone or device. Forgot to turn it on in the morning? No worries, just log into the app and tell it what to do directly. We found this was a very useful addition.

We did our standard test of how it was rated on the internet and found a very favorable positive ratings frequency. In the first 6 days, it got 10 positive reviews, it took 8 days to get the next 10 and 10 days for the following 10. This compares very well to other robot vacuums on the market.

This machine is really made to last, and while none of our products were ultra durable or built to last a very long time, this one came as close as we can imagine. Very solidly built.

Detailed Review

best auto vacuum: looking for a feature-rich robot vacuum? Try this instead

For nearly double the price of its little brother (see Our Choice), we had hoped for double the features and quality. This was perhaps unrealistic and we were slightly disappointed. We’re not saying it was a bad machine, just that for nearly $900 the extra features didn’t quite feel worth it.

But who are we kidding? We loved this thing. It’s a proper robot hoover. It actually does the cleaning properly. That extra cash gets you a few extra features, the best of which is the iRobot HOME app, which allows you to schedule this mini machine via your smartphone or internet enabled device.

Very convenient and easy to use, this is the future as far as we’re concerned. Connect it to Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant and have it seamlessly integrate into your home routine. Talk to it like any other Alexa or Google Assistant controlled device. Who needs a remote control?

The extra moolah also gets you extra power. The AeroForce Cleaning System sounds impressive and it does a very good job. Early Roombas lacked in power, limiting their effectiveness, but this has no such inadequacies. It hoovers up the dirt, no matter the size, without a problem on any surface.

Even with all the extra power, it still lasts for a very impressive two hours of continuous cleaning, according to the manufacturers. We found it almost lived up to this, which, compared to many, is very good.

Especially impressive to our testing team was the Power Boost, which gives the machine an extra 10x suction on deep carpets and rugs. For allergen sufferers, this could be the answer. No HEPA filters, unfortunately, but it does have 10 micron filters as standard.

The AeroForce Cleaning system boasts it gives a Power Boost of up to 10x when the robot encounters a rug or carpet. In our testing we certainly noticed the sweeper giving the carpets a real going over and we found that it cleaned them very well. We thought, for nearly 900 bucks, this had better be a very good hoover. It is. It still doesn’t quite match a good upright, but for a low profile mini auto vacuum, it is the business.

The latest iAdapt 2.0 software comes installed on this machine, giving it the edge when it comes to efficient navigation and cleaning. We didn’t notice much difference but it did seem less confused than other robot vacuums.

Pros:

  • Amazing connectivity
  • Very powerful
  • Power Boost
  • High-quality filters
  • Excellent navigation
  • High build quality

Cons:

  • Not cheap

Verdict:

A whole lot of money being put down for a few extra features that might make the difference. It certainly feels like the future of the hoover. The connectivity and extra power, along with the quick charging, make this a superb choice.

Beginner’s Choice: ILIFE A4 Robot Vacuum Cleaner

Why is this product for Beginner’s choice?

Clean Machine

product

ILIFE A4 Robot Vacuum Cleaner

Get It On Amazon

A great starter choice

This is perfect for any auto vacuum beginners. If this is your first foray, then choose the Ilife A4. It has a bunch of great features and also comes in at a super affordable price!

If you’re just making your first forays into the world of robot vacuums, this ILIFE A4 is a good choice for you. Almost as cheap as the Budget Pick, it has a range of features you can expect from its more expensive relatives that make it a real contender for a first auto vacuum.

In the $175 range, there isn’t much that can boast a battery as powerful or the charging capacity of this mini vacuum. It will do the self-charging thing very well, it always made it back to its charging dock during our tests.

While not as fast to charge as some alternatives, if you leave this thing to clean it will do a great job. The 3 stage cleaning functions on the A4 mean it handles hard floors and deep carpets very well.

You can program this mini vacuum very easily and it does a good job of following instructions. Every robot vacuum gets stuck sometimes, but this one no more than any of the others.

The battery lasts for up to 120 minutes, or 2 hours, meaning it can clean a large amount of floor space before going back to its charging dock for more precious energy. This is easy enough in a smaller apartment. But for a larger house, it might take a few cycles though that’s no problem since it just gets on with it.

This machine is highly rated on the internet, and we rated it highly too. In 9 days it got 10 positive reviews, 10 more in 9 more days and in the next 4 days another ten. Very impressive.

Detailed Review

best auto vacuum: Perfect choice for beginners

A great little machine that does a top job for the price. A full 110-120 minutes of cleaning from one charge, and a 1000pa motor doing the suction, this can compete very well with its more expensive counterparts.

Other people were impressed too, the overwhelming majority of reviews on Amazon being 5*. A highly rated machine, it makes for a confident purchase. That said, we did notice that some people were reporting harassment via phone calls at 1 am for leaving bad reviews, so that might account for some of the positivity. I doubt it though, it is a great machine.

A few things pointed us towards making this our Beginner’s Choice, the price being a major factor. For $175 there isn’t much around that can offer the same features. We found the 3 stage cleaning function was particularly noteworthy, giving a thorough clean on hard or carpeted surfaces.

It has a full suite of sensors that do a credible job of guiding it around, it didn’t fall off our fiendishly placed stairs or get stuck under our low sofa. It plots a fairly good path around the environment and is able to use the Max mode for an extra thorough clean in especially dusty areas, a nice touch. When it does bump into things, it does so pretty hard, probably due to the speed with which this thing goes.

For a really deep clean, stick with your upright, there isn’t a robot vacuum out there that can compete. They’re getting there though, and this one does very well with the 1000pa motor built into it. That’s a lot of suction from such a small device. There’s even a Max mode for the really difficult dirt, which the machine does a good job of identifying.

This auto vacuum doesn’t learn the layout of your home, so it moves fairly randomly. But it still gives a good clean as we found. One niggle is that it is quite difficult to empty the dust bin, it often results in a lot of dust being let into the air. If you’re careful it’s OK.

The A4 has particular success with pet hair, so pet owners and beginners might want to give this one a further look. Dog owners also have to don’t worry about their dogs being afraid of vacuums. Our report has more information you will want to see before making a choice.

Pros:

  • Very affordable
  • Long battery life
  • Powerful motor
  • Good with pet hair
  • Max mode
  • Well rated

Cons:

  • Some issues with construction in some reviews
  • Doesn’t “learn” about your home
  • Max mode can destroy rugs
  • Hard to empty dust bin cleanly

Verdict:

Cheap and cheerful, this is a great machine for someone who can’t afford the more expensive alternatives but still wants most of the great features. It does its job decently and once you learn how it operates, you can get it to work very well indeed.

Best for Professionals: iRobot Roomba 880 Robotic Vacuum Cleaner

Why is this product Best for Professionals?

Pro’s Pick

product

iRobot Roomba 880 Robotic Vacuum

Get It On Amazon

A perfect pick for professionals

A vacuum to suit your busy life! Finally! This clever little model will learn all about your home and can be left to clean when you aren’t around!

For the modern professional who has a very busy life, we present the iRobot Roomba 880. While relatively expensive – the second most expensive in our list – this machine is a very successful entry into the top tier of robot vacuums.

Built to have very little maintenance and input from the owner, you can set the 880 off and leave it to do its thing without a worry.

It has an advanced suite of sensors that scan the environment to a high level of accuracy, allowing the onboard computer to create a detailed map of your home. The 880 can then navigate, using the latest software, the intricacies of the rooms it has been assigned to clean.

Cheaper robot hoovers move randomly, this one plans the most efficient way of cleaning your home and sets about it with a minimum of fuss. This capability makes it a great choice for the professional: s/he can leave for work, activate the schedule and come home to a nice cleaned house or apartment.

Once again we checked how it was rated online and found a very good ratings frequency. In the first week, it got 10 positive reviews. 10 more in the next 9 days and 10 more in the 13 days proceeding. With a very small number of negative reviews, this reassured us that we were looking at a reliable product.

With a running time of up to 100 minutes, this mini robot vacuum can hoover a whole lot of floor before needing to go back and charge itself, which it does automatically. That should be enough for a small apartment or a larger one in two or three cycles. Just program in your own schedule and set it going.

Detailed Review

best auto vacuum: Try this for professional use

Another great hoover from Roomba, we are very pleased with the quality of their robot vacuums these days. They were useless 10 years ago, but now they’re a very sensible addition to any home. A professional might want to look at this one for the small maintenance needs and the powerful automated cleaning, as well as being portable.

If your life is busy with work and play, you don’t want to be spending much time doing the cleaning. Why should you? So buy a Roomba, spend a few minutes setting it up, program in a schedule and forget about it until it needs emptying. Sounds good to us.

You’ll be pleased with how deeply this machine cleans your floors, the AeroForce (sounds like a chocolate bar) Cleaning System is genuinely very effective, as are the filters that extract everything down to a 10-micron level. Not ideal for allergy sufferers, but good enough for most.

Check our research report, it has a full layout of the features this mini marvel has packed into its well constructed and durable shell. It has a feel of a product designed to last at least a few years, which is how long the batteries will last before needing recycling and replacing anyway. Many a robot hoover won’t last that long.

Talking of batteries, the Roomba can clean continuously for around 100 minutes before it makes its way back to its little charging dock for more sustaining electricity. This means that it should be able to tackle a small apartment, like that of a young professional for example, or a larger home floor in a few cycles.

The software is pretty excellent, we didn’t have many examples of the Roomba being totally confused by objects, it seemed to identify everything very well overall.

Pros:

  • Well suited to the professional lifestyle
  • Low maintenance
  • Powerful suction
  • Intelligent software
  • Good navigation
  • Self-charging and automated
  • “learns” its environment
  • 10-micron filters as standard

Cons:

  • Relatively expensive

Verdict:

The choice for a professional, this is a low maintenance and powerful auto vacuum cleaner that can be left to its own devices while you’re at work (or doing really fun things like you should be!).

A List of 5 Other Auto Vacuums We Reviewed

No. 6: Eufy RoboVac 11 Robotic Vacuum Cleaner Review

Cleaning Creation

product

Eufy Robovac 11

Get It On Amazon

A trusted choice for you

This is a trustworthy, basic and affordable pick. The Eufy is really easy to move around your home, and packs a punch on the power front. Overall a great little vacuum you can trust!

The RoboVac has gone through quite a few different iterations over the years and this is their latest creation. It is pretty good, which you would hope, given how long they’ve been making them for.

At under $270, this is a relatively affordable choice that is unfortunately limited by its design. If your house has hard flooring and thin carpets and you can’t keep them sparkly clean, this will do a passable job of cleaning them. Though not if the floors are very dark in color, then it will be hopeless. Or you have high pile carpets, which it won’t clean.

We supposed that these limitations are because it is 0.5 inches thinner than most rivals at 3.1 inches, which can be an advantage, but really there is little excuse these days.

It is self-charging and has a 1000pa motor that provides some serious suction, and it does clean what it was designed to clean admirably. Not smartphone compatible, you can use a remote control to change the settings.

You have a choice of three specialized cleaning modes: Edge, Spot, and Max, for a little versatility in your clean. This does require you to be monitoring your RoboVac 11, sort of removing half the point of the vacuum.

The triple filter system works well, but we couldn’t find a spec as to what size particle it can filter out. It seemed to work, though nowhere near a HEPA filter quality.

The operation is quiet and it doesn’t bump into things that much, it can tackle thin rugs and tassels very well. Look for our report for more information. It is portable too.

Construction was overall pretty good, it didn’t feel like it would break immediately.

It was rated fairly well on the internet, getting a 4* on average.

Pros:

  • In the affordable range
  • Powerful motor
  • Low profile
  • Portable
  • Remote control
  • Auto charging
  • Quiet
  • Decent reviews

Cons:

  • Can’t handle thick carpets or dark floors

Verdict:

For what it does, this is a good little auto hoover. Some customers will be put off, however, buy the limitations like its inability to handle dark flooring or thick carpets. Overall, a good device, but there are better ones out there.

No. 7: Neato Botvac D80 Robot Vacuum Review

Solid Choice

product

Neato Botvac D80 Robot Vacuum

Get It On Amazon

Unique D-shape design

This D-shape vacuum looks good and works well. It is a little expensive for what it does, but if you’re looking for a solid option that works on all surfaces, then the Neato could be for you!

Right in the middle of the price range for robot hoovers we find the Neato Botvac D80. it has a unique D shape that apparently lets it get closer to walls and objects than other robot vacuums. It certainly sucked up scary quantities of dirt and hair. We didn’t know our offices were so filthy…

The real selling point for this machine is the software, it’s meant to be able to navigate your home really efficiently, but we didn’t find that to be the case all the time. It got stuck a frustrating amount of the time, and for all its vaunted laser navigation system, it didn’t give an extra edge when cleaning.

It’s to be expected that an auto hoover gets stuck, but not this much at this price. Also distinctly lacking is the ability to control your Botvac from your smartphone. Other competitors offer this ability in this price range and it is enormously handy. Why they haven’t added this as a feature is beyond us.

In terms of construction, it is well made and assembled from quality parts. It looks good too. When we were checking up on the reviews, we found a lot of people complaining about the short battery life or the failure of the batteries completely. There were enough comments of this nature to concern us.

There are some great things about this hoover though, its large dust bin can take a lot of dirt before needing emptying and it really is good at pet hair, amongst the best we’ve encountered. Like other auto vacuums, there are no HEPA filters available, but the filters on this were pretty good.

Easy to program and sort out schedules, it is a simple device to use. Have a look at our report for more data.

Pros:

  • Great with pet hair
  • “learns” its environment
  • Good over a variety of surfaces
  • Powerful suction
  • Good filters
  • Portable

Cons:

  • Issues with getting stuck
  • Battery issues
  • Expensive for lack of some features
  • No smartphone compatibility

Verdict:

For what it does, this is a good little auto hoover. Some customers will be put off, however, buy the limitations like its inability to handle dark flooring or thick carpets. Overall, a good device, but there are better ones out there.

No. 8: ECOVACS DEEBOT N78 Robotic Vacuum Cleaner Review

Cheap cleaner

product

ECOVACS Deebot N78 Robot Vacuum

Get It On Amazon

ECOVACS Deebot N78 Robot Vacuum

A good option if your home has hard floor and thin carpet. It is a cheap and basic choice, that lacks some of the more advanced features. Good for what it does and an unbeatable price!

The sales pitch on Amazon for the ECOVACS DEEBOT N78 includes a guide for battery issues, so that could tell you something about what trouble people are having with this mini auto vacuum.

We didn’t have battery issues, but then we didn’t use it for a few months. We just can’t test things that thoroughly, which is why we keep an eye on the reviews. Lots of 5* and 4* reviews but enough 1* to concern us. It seems people complain about the cheap electronics and construction materials, a lot of these machines break down in a few weeks or months.

For those that got good function out of this admittedly pretty cheaply made vacuum, it did a good job of getting hair and dirt up from thin carpets and hard floors. It couldn’t cope with a thick carpet at all but then it was never designed to. Keep that in mind if you’re thinking of buying it.

The remote control is neat, giving the customer the ability to make changes to the direction of your Deebot and plug in schedules so it cleans when you’re out. It gets stuck about as often as other cheap (ish) auto vacuums, so far so normal. It won’t connect to your smartphone, but nothing of this price will. Our report will give you a good idea of the capabilities/prices.

This machine isn’t one of the “learning” vacuums, it will trundle around your floors in a random way, which actually gives a really thorough clean. It can trundle for quite a while too, the battery life being around 110 minutes of constant cleaning.

It was pretty effective in vacuuming pet hair and the filtration system is good quality, though not enough for severe allergy sufferers. It also avoids tangles very well.

Pros:

  • Cheap
  • 110 minutes of cleaning
  • Doesn’t tangle often
  • Good filters
  • Good on thin carpets and hard floors
  • Portable

Cons:

  • Can’t deal with thick carpets
  • No smartphone connection
  • Lots of issues with batteries
  • Doesn’t “learn” the environment

Verdict:

A cheap auto vacuum that does the job pretty well with very little fuss. While not the best out there, it will provide a good clean to your home, especially if you have pets.

No. 9: ILIFE A4s Robot Vacuum Cleaner Review

Endurance Pick

product

ILIFE A4s Robot Vacuum Cleaner

Get It On Amazon

Long running auto vacuum

A huge 140 minutes of battery life! This model keeps cleaning for hours! Its powerful suction, auto charge function and programmable schedule options are all brilliant features.

You can pick one of these up for under $200 and while it won’t do the dishes too, it will give a good clean with the 3 step cleaning system and powerful suction.

Fully programmable, you can stick a schedule into this and let it go. Unfortunately, it’s not able to “learn” its environment and plan a clean that way, so it is pretty random in its coverage. This does result in a thorough clean as it comes at dirt and dust from several angles during its cleaning process.

One of the longest-running auto vacuums out there, this hoover can give a whole 140 minutes before needing a recharge, which it does automatically. This extra time means it can cover a great deal of space, at least a small apartment. This might be the deciding factor for some.

This machine covered a lot of different flooring very well, though it failed dismally to clean a very dark floor, and won’t manage high-pile carpets at all. For the price, you can expect that, but it is still disappointing.

A quick look at the reviews finds a very well rated hoover indeed, for the price a lot of people can’t find better. We think our Budget Pick is the one for the price conscious, but this is a good contender. Check our report for a comparison.

The make was pretty decent, it didn’t feel flimsy or make any funny noises. The materials it was made from were obviously good quality and there are few examples of them failing through faulty materials.

No smartphone connectivity or remote, which is a shame, but this thing does just go when you tell it to. A very hands-off device, you’ll only be going to remove the vast amounts of dirt and hair it can suck from your floors.

Pros:

  • Cheap
  • Good cleaning
  • Powerful suction
  • Auto charging
  • Programmable schedules
  • Well rated
  • 120-140 minute battery life

Cons:

  • No remote
  • No smartphone connectivity
  • Doesn’t “learn” the environment

Verdict:

Overall, a cheap and quality piece of kit that would do for the price conscious or budget limited buyer. Not a complicated device, it has all the pitfalls of a cheap auto vacuum but no problems with its design or construction.

No. 10: ILIFE V5s Robotic Vacuum Cleaner Mopping Floor Scrubbing Robot Review

2-in-1 dream

product

ILIFE V5s Robotic Vacuum Cleaner

Get It On Amazon

A superb mop and vacuum

A brilliant mop and vacuum combination! This model is unique. It cleans up after itself and has some really impressive extra features. A good-value choice for your sometimes messy family home!

At last, a vacuum cleaner that cleans up after itself! We loved the fact this thing can mop as well as vacuum, it’s one less thing to worry about. But does it do it well?

Yes, is the short answer. The onboard sensors detect with pretty good accuracy what it is vacuuming and what could do with a mop and does the right thing. We didn’t find it mopping the rugs once.

Changing the water can be a bit of a chore, like changing the dust bin, but when you see the sheer filthiness of the water that comes out of it, you’ll see the necessity of a device like this. So much hair, so much dirty water.

The operation is pretty quiet as well for the 90-110 minutes it will clean as it isn’t irritatingly loud, so you don’t have to deal with loud vacuum noise. Running the vacuum with the mop does mean it is more likely to get stuck, but that’s just part of the deal.

As a vacuum this machine does a good job, the sweeper leaving carpets and rugs clean. The mop is pretty good, it can’t quite compare to a human giving the floor a good scrub, just like a robot vacuum can’t quite clean like a human, but it does a good job if you really don’t like doing the cleaning. Which is most of us.

Reading the reviews online, some people had issues with it not reaching its charging station before running out of power, others found that it went in circles after a few months. These are in a definite minority, however, the majority of people rated it very highly.

Have a look at our report for the data, it’ll give you a clear picture of why this is a great machine.

For less than $200, this robotic vacuum as well as mop does as good a vacuum job as others of the same price, while having a mopping option. Fantastic.

Pros:

  • Under $200
  • Combination mop and vacuum
  • Powerful suction
  • Good software
  • Adjusts between floor types well
  • Mops very nicely
  • Long battery life
  • Remote control
  • Portable

Cons:

  • Long charge cycle
  • Can have difficulties getting back to the charging station
  • Gets stuck because of mop

Verdict:

A very impressive vacuum and mop combo, this is a real asset in a household with pets or children, it will clean up after them admirably. Some small issues don’t detract from this generally very good machine.

Care and Maintenance

All machines need taking care of and even machines designed to be labor-saving, like an auto vacuum, need a bit of TLC to keep them in top working condition. Keep them somewhere they won’t get trodden on. It’s very easy to kick one of these things and break it.

Check the dust tray regularly, you’ll be surprised how fast it fills up. If you have a regular cleaning schedule, you’ll be emptying it at least twice a week.

Each dust bin is different, so learn how to empty it without making a mess before you set your new auto vacuum going.

Brushes get clogged up with string and hair, it’s just a fact of vacuuming life. Check them occasionally to make sure they aren’t getting too clogged as this will dramatically reduce the efficiency of your vacuum. When cutting the hair or string out, be careful not to cut the fibers of the brush.

Filters will need cleaning or replacing periodically, check with the manufacturer to see whether yours can be cleaned or whether they need to be replaced. A clean filter will improve your breathing as well as the effectiveness of your auto vacuum.

The sweeper will need regular check-ups to rid it of the dirt that will collect in it. If there is more than one sweeper, you might have to take the bottom off the machine to get access. A sweeper can be awkward but when clean, it will make a huge difference to the quality of the vacuuming.

Wrapping it Up

The world of robot hoovers is a big one and there are a lot to choose from, we sincerely hope that our guide has saved some frustration when it comes to buying, and given you the information you need to make your best choices. We hope you enjoyed our Top Ten as well. That’s what we’re here for, after all.