Top 5 Best Affordable Robot Vacuums of 2019: Buying Guide

When the Roomba hit stores in the early 2000s, consumers went crazy over this novel vacuum cleaner, forcing iRobot to produce twice as much as planned to meet the 2002 holiday season demand. However, almost 20 years later, numerous robot vacuum cleaner brands and models have gained ground, and this type of vacuum accounts for approximately 23 percent of the world’s vacuum cleaner products.

Best of the
Best!
Best For Tight Spaces Budget Pick
(< $220)
Vacuum & Mopping Also
Great
iRobot Roomba s9+ (9550) eufy BoostIQ RoboVac 11S MAX Ecovacs Deebot N79S Roborock S5 Robotic Vacuum and Mop Ecovacs Deebot 500
iRobot Eufy Ecovacs Roborock Ecovacs
s9+ 11S MAX N79S S5 500
Continuous 100 min 110 min 150 min 110 min
12.2 x 12.2 x 3.5 in 17.8 x 13.7 x 4.8 in 33 x 33 x 7.8 in 13.8 x 13.7 x 3.8 in 12.9 x 12.9 x 3.1 in
20 pounds 5.73 pounds 7.05 pounds 7 pounds 6.7 ounces
Review Review Review Review Review

Today, choosing a reliable, affordable robot vacuum is an almost impossible task with all the options available, but this guide has you covered. To help, we have reviewed dozens of robot vacuums and narrowed them down to bring you the 12 best budget robot vacuum cleaners for under $250.

5) Ecovacs Deebot N79S Robotic Vacuum

Increased suction on demand. The Deebot N79S by Ecovacs boasts two-speed suction control with a max-suction mode that’s twice as powerful as the default speed. The V-point brushroll features hard-floor and carpet-centric bristles, and a duo of side sweepers help gather scattered dirt and baseboard dust.

Affordable Ecovacs Deebot N79S Robotic Vacuum

On hard floors, the N79S is a champ, running 110 minutes per charge. The robot docks and charges the 2,600 mAh lithium-ion battery without assistance, reducing its downtime. Self-docking also extends the brushed black robot vac’s the coverage area, which is far-reaching thanks to the N79S’ height of 3.27 inches.

Moving in a random, bounce-like pattern, the Deebot N79S performs sufficiently in wide-open spaces. Three cliff sensors detect stairs to the sides and the front of the robotic vacuum while bumper sensors look out for objects. Besides auto-clean mode, the robot offers spot mode for small pickup jobs and edge mode for wall-line vacuuming.

You can begin an auto-clean session by pushing the onboard quick-start button or telling Alexa or Assistant to start cleaning. Dock and stop are two other usable voice commands. Your smartphone is another control option. Install the Ecovacs HOME app to manually navigate the robot, create a cleaning schedule and receive status alerts. Ecovacs also includes an LCD remote.

Three layers of filtration make the Deebot N79S highly efficient at preventing allergens from becoming airborne. The 17.6-ounce dirt bin can easily hold a day’s worth of debris. Removing it to empty the contents or change the filters at the 6-month mark is easy – Just push the handle latch and pull out the bin.

Ecovacs Deebot N79S Robotic Vacuum

4) iRobot Roomba 690 Robot Vacuum

iRobot takes a distinctive approach to brushroll power with the Roomba 690‘s two-roller setup. The oversized brushroll’s stiff bristles lift debris from the carpet while the flexible brushroll contours to bare floors. An auto-adjusting floor plate keeps the suction inlet close to the floor no matter the floor’s height. Dirt detect sensors increase suction in heavy-traffic areas while an angled side brush takes care of wall edges. To keep the brushrolls clean, you get a handy hair-removal tool.

Affordable iRobot Roomba 690 Robot Vacuum

To learn the layout of your home without bumping into objects, the Roomba 690 uses an iAdapt laser distance sensor. Four cliff sensors provide fully surrounding ledge protection. A room-confinement sensor identifies the included line/halo virtual barrier. iRobot even throws in batteries for the virtual wall tower.

Spot clean, dock the robot or start a cleaning session via the onboard control panel. The Roomba 690 also comes with a remote, and it’s Wi-Fi enabled. The iRobot HOME app gives map reports and customized cleaning options while Alexa or Assistant can dock, locate, schedule, start, and stop the 690.

Inside the black and silver Roomba 690, there’s a 1,800 mAh lithium-ion battery, which offers a respectable working time of 90 minutes. When the battery needs to be recharged, the 3.7-inch-tall Roomba 690 heads to the dock automatically.

iRobot chose a 10-ounce AeroVac dirt bin to contain dirt and debris. The fully enclosed bin is affixed with a side-swinging door, allowing you to tilt and dump. The bin is also where the allergen-reducing HEPA-style filter net is located.

iRobot Roomba 690 Robot Vacuum

3) Shark ION Robot Vacuum R85

Shark is all about streamlined navigation with its ION R85 model. Smart Sensor Navigation 2.0 pinpoints the exact locations of obstacles, and three cliff sensors prevent falling off ledges. When you can’t locate the robot, you can use the find-robot feature and follow the beeping sound. The ION R85 comes with an 8-foot roll of BotBoundary magnetic strips that you can cut to size as needed.

Affordable Shark ION Robot Vacuum R85

If you own pets, you’ll appreciate the robotic vacuum’s self-cleaning brushroll and the hair-sweeping side brushes. You also have your choice of three suction modes. Quiet suction is perfect for hard-floor vacuuming. Normal suction is the go-to for everyday cleaning, and max suction is meant for heavy-duty vacuuming.

Max suction along with dock and auto clean are accessible from the robot itself, and you can use Assistant or Alexa for a few basic commands. All other controls are available on the Shark Clean app, including scheduling, quiet and normal suction and find the robot.

Black and gray with chrome detailing, the Shark ION R85 creates an attractive appearance, and the lithium-ion battery makes the robot vacuum an excellent runner. On a single charge, the R85 can go for an hour, and it only takes 3 hours for the self-docking robot to recharge.

With 21 ounces of interior space, the robotic vacuum’s dirt bin is mega-sized. A handle latch on the bin offers no-struggle removal for emptying and rinsing. As with the bin, the cartridge filter is also rinsable, and its pleats capture the majority of allergens that the robot collects.

Shark ION Robot Vacuum R85

2) iRobot Roomba 675 Robot Vacuum

Voice and smartphone compatibility offer convenient control wherever you are. Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa know how to start, stop, find and dock the Roomba 675 robotic vacuum, and they can even help you create a cleaning schedule. On the iRobot HOME app, you can access all the same functions as well as map reports and suction adjustment.

Affordable iRobot Roomba 675 Robot Vacuum

An array of sensors prevent damage to the robot by telling it to avoid stairs and obstacles. The Roomba 675 also uses a navigational technology called iAdapt. With iAdapt, a laser distance sensor analyzes its surrounding to generate a map and plan the best route.

From hardwoods to high-pile carpet, iRobot designed the Roomba 675 to clean close to the surface. The floor plate raises and lowers intuitively, and a pair of brushrolls lift and flex. A side brush sits at a 27-degree angle to maximize its sweeping ability, and there are even dirt-detect sensors that step-up the suction in extra-dirty spots.

The soft black robot measures 3.7 inches tall with the height taking into account the robot’s high-grip wheels. The Roomba 675 is a self-charging robotic vacuum that docks and recharges without human assistance. With each full charge, the 1,800 mAh lithium-ion battery lasts 1.5 hours.

A high-efficiency AeroVac filter/bin combo offers excellent allergen filtration and dirt collection. The filter net is a HEPA-style media that captures many of the dust and pollen particles on your floors. The dirt bin holds 10 ounces of debris, and it features a door that swings open to the side.

iRobot Roomba 675 Robot Vacuum

1) Eufy BoostIQ RoboVac 11S Max Robot Vacuum

BoostIQ suction is Eufy’s current feature of pride and for a good reason. The 11S Max’s 2nd Gen BoostIQ is an automatic function that kicks up the suction to 2,000 pascals in 1.5 seconds flat. Even in this mode, the robot remains quiet at 55 decibels. There are also two side brushes and a brushroll that sweep, pull and lift simultaneously.

Affordable eufy BoostIQ RoboVac 11S MAX

The Eufy RoboVac 11S Max can clean places other robotic vacuums can’t thanks to its 2.85-inch height. A 2,600 mAh lithium-ion battery lasts for 100 minutes between 5-hour charges. Since the 11S Max self-docks, recharging the battery is a hands-free process.

Eufy went a different direction than it has in the past with the 11S Max’s filter. Instead of separate layers, the filtration system consists of a single cartridge with slanted pleats. The box-style bin is easy to remove and empty, and its large volume holds 20 ounces of dirt and debris.

You get plenty of choices in terms of cleaning modes. Auto mode vacuums your entire house. Edge mode cleans baseboards and corners. Quick clean takes care of one room, and spot mode picks up small piles of dirt. Ten-plus infrared sensors divert the Eufy 11S Max from ledges and objects; two robust wheels can climb 0.6-inch-tall threshold strips, and the tempered glass top prevents visible scratches.

On the glossy black robot, there’s a one-button control panel that lets you start an auto-clean session. All the other functions are controllable with the remote, such as manual suction adjustment. You can also use the remote’s display screen to program and view a daily vacuuming schedule.

Eufy BoostIQ RoboVac 11S Max Robot Vacuum

Conclusion

Sales of robotic vacuums continue to rise. While many are the co-stars of plenty of YouTube videos, they can do more than giving “cats a ride”. Tests show that robotic vacuums do clean, although they don’t match the best uprights and canister vacuums. Some robotic vacuums move methodically across the floor in a single pass.

They can cover a standard room in 15 to 20 minutes. Multipass robots travel in a random pattern and can take up to two hours, but tests show they do a better job. You’ll also want to keep an eye on these little robots the first few times, to make sure they don’t get tangled up in anything or stuck under the furniture. Below a comparison table of the top 5 value robot cleaners from our article.

Best of the
Best!
Best For Tight Spaces Budget Pick
(< $220)
Vacuum & Mopping Also
Great
iRobot Roomba s9+ (9550) eufy BoostIQ RoboVac 11S MAX Ecovacs Deebot N79S Roborock S5 Robotic Vacuum and Mop Ecovacs Deebot 500
iRobot Eufy Ecovacs Roborock Ecovacs
s9+ 11S MAX N79S S5 500
Continuous 100 min 110 min 150 min 110 min
12.2 x 12.2 x 3.5 in 17.8 x 13.7 x 4.8 in 33 x 33 x 7.8 in 13.8 x 13.7 x 3.8 in 12.9 x 12.9 x 3.1 in
20 pounds 5.73 pounds 7.05 pounds 7 pounds 6.7 ounces
Review Review Review Review Review

Best Robot Vacuum Cleaners of 2019 Buying Guide

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