Is the cost of a robot vacuum standing in your way from owning one of these time-saving gadgets? You can buy a robot vacuum without having to max out your credit card. There are more manufacturers now than ever that produce these appliances, driving down the average price of robotic vacuum cleaners across the board. Thanks to seemingly non-stop developments in robotic technology, you don’t have to settle for a clunky, ineffective robot vacuum just because you don’t have a ton of cash to shell out.
Robot Vacuum FAQs
How Will Owning a Robot Vacuum Benefit Me?
Robotic vacuums are designed to make your life easier. With that purpose in mind, there are many benefits that come along with using one. Although it isn’t a substitute for vacuuming with an upright, a robot vacuum does cut down on the time you must spend vacuuming and sweeping, which helps you save valuable time throughout the week.
Despite their advanced technology, robot vacuums are easy to use. Besides routine maintenance, all you have to do is press a button or two, and the robot does the rest. Plus, these appliances are small, usually measuring about 1 foot in width and a few inches in height, so they don’t take up a lot of room. This is great news if you’re short on storage space.
How Do Robot Vacuums Work?
Inside of every robotic vacuum, there is a motherboard, which works in conjunction with the vacuum’s sensors to navigate around your house. These components prevent the vacuum from making contact with objects and falling down staircases.
As the robot rolls across the floor, its motor generates suction and turns the brushes to lift and remove dirt and debris. Most robot vacuum cleaners contain a filter that captures fine particles like dust.
Robotic vacuums also have a rechargeable battery. Once the battery gets low, the vacuum needs to be recharged. The majority of robo vacs are able to dock themselves to the charger. However, only some resume cleaning after the battery is replenished.
How Do Robo Vacuums Decide Where to Go?
The same sensors that tell the robot to avoid obstacles and stairs also help it determine the direction it should take. Some robot vacuums move in a random pattern while others travel back and forth in straight lines. A robotic vacuum may also move around the perimeter of a room and drive in a spiral pattern to clean small areas.
Robot vacuums that can move in multiple patterns either change patterns manually or automatically. If they require human intervention, all you have to do is select the appropriate setting. Those that alter their pattern automatically are typically equipped with an on-board camera or a laser that helps them figure out the most efficient route to take.
How Well Do They Clean in Corners and Under Furniture?
This is a common question since almost every robotic vacuum is circular. A robot vacuum has at least one brush on the underside of its body. This brush extends past the edge of the vacuum and rapidly spins to collect dirt and dust from wall edges and corners.
As far as furniture goes, a robot vacuum is like any other type of vacuum in that it can only clean under pieces of furniture it’s short enough to clear. However, robot vacuums range in height from about 2.5 inches to 5 inches, which means they can fit under most low-sitting furniture.
What Features Can I Expect at This Price Point?
You can get a budget-friendly robot vacuum with a surprising number of advanced features if you shop around carefully. Robotic vacuum cleaners under $200 have at least one side brush while some may have a second side brush and a central brushroll. There are few models that can damp mop your hard floors and some that come with a HEPA filter.
Virtually every robotic vacuum is equipped with anti-fall and anti-collision sensors, and many models offer an edge-cleaning mode, a spot-cleaning mode and customized scheduling. While the type of battery varies from one robo vac to the next, many models contain a powerful lithium-ion battery that allows the robot to run for 1.5 hours or longer, and most robot vacuums can recharge on their own.
Do Robot Vacuums Come With Any Accessories?
Absolutely! It’s not uncommon to find a low-priced robotic vacuum that you can control with a remote, and almost every robot has a charging dock with a power adapter. If the robot vacuum can wet mop, it will have a water reservoir and an absorbent pad.
As a bonus, manufacturers often throw in complimentary replacement parts such as an extra filter and additional side brushes. To help make maintenance quick and easy, a robotvac may also come with a tool to remove tangles and clean the brushes as well as a dedicated screwdriver to use for replacing the side brushes.
Top 5 Robot Vacuum Cleaners Under $200
5 MOOKA Robotic Vacuum Cleaner Review
This solid black robotic vacuum cleaner bt Mooka performs great on hard floors and carpets. It’s equipped with a pair of side brushes and a helix-patterned brushroll, and the robot vac can adjust its height to match that of the floor it’s cleaning. Since it only stands 2.9 inches tall, the robot can roll under most sofas and mattresses.
Its on-board controls let you pause and start a cleaning session as well as send it to the dock. For across-the-room convenience from 23 feet away, you can use the digital remote to change its movement pattern to auto, edge or single-room. Plus, there is a timer that allows you to create a daily cleaning schedule.
Within the robot’s 500-milliliter bin, there is a HEPA filter that traps particles as small as 0.3 microns. There is also a 2,600 mAh lithium-ion battery inside of the robot vacuum that runs for up to 2 hours on a full charge, and it only takes 3 to 5 hours for the battery to recharge.
4 KOIOS Robot Vacuum Cleaner Review
Koios made its 13 Robotic Vacuum Cleaner strong enough to withstand a little rough handling with the implementation of a scratch-resistant tempered glass top. The manufacturer also designed this robotvac to be nimble. At a height of 2.95 inches, there is almost no place this robot can’t go. It also has two side brushes, one brushroll and powerful suction that generates a mere 50 to 60 decibels of sound.
Like the Mooka at number five, the Koios 13 robot vacuum also comes with a digital remote. From the remote, you can make a cleaning schedule and choose from among auto, single-room, spot or edge mode. No matter the pattern in which it moves, the robot vacuum’s infrared anti-drop and anti-collision sensors keep the vacuum out of harm’s way.
When its 2,600 mAh lithium-ion battery gets low, the robot vacuum self-docks to the charger. After it’s fully recharged, the battery can keep the robot moving for 2 hours, which is long enough to cover a 1,600-square-foot space. For mess containment, the vacuum has a bin that holds 500 milliliters of debris and a HEPA-style filter that takes care of fine dust.
3 ILIFE V5s Pro Robot Vacuum Mop Cleaner Review
This 3-inch-tall golden beauty is both a vacuum and a wet mop that adjusts to any floor type. With its dual side brushes and five-times-the-power max mode, the iLife V5s Pro robot vacuum can suction heavy and large debris. It boasts 65-millimeter-wide wheels that can climb 10-millimeter thresholds at a 15-degree angle. Plus, the vacuum’s bumper is constructed from thermoplastic polyurethane, making the bumper flexible yet resistant to abrasions.
Unlike other robot vacuums that wet mop, the V5s Pro comes with an intelligent water reservoir. The 300-milliliter reservoir has ILIFE’s Gen2 i-Dropping technology that releases an even amount of water while the robot is in motion and stops when the robot isn’t moving. To soak up the water, the robo vac also comes with a microfiber pad.
Thanks to its long-lasting lithium-ion battery, this robotic vacuum can run for 140 minutes in auto, spot and edge mode, and it’s able to dock to the charger without assistance. With the included remote, you can access all of the robot vacuum’s settings, including its programmed scheduling function.
2 Dibea D960 Robot Vacuum Cleaner Review
Dibea’s D960 robot vacuum is a whiz at cleaning corners and edges. Its U-shaped design and pair of side brushes help it reach further into corners than many other robot vacuum cleaners. This model also has quiet, efficient brushless motor that rotates the powerful brushroll and produces 1.2 kilopascals of suction. As it travels around your house, the robot changes cleaning modes to suit each floor it vacuums.
With its cover made of tempered glass and multiple infrared sensors, you don’t have to worry about the robot sustaining damage from falls or bumps. Since it’s only 3 inches tall, the robot vacuum can clear low-slung furniture. Plus, you can choose from auto, spot, zigzag and V-line mode as well as set a daily schedule by using the remote control.
Emptying the 350-milliliter bin is a breeze due to its push-to-release mechanism, and there is even an H11 HEPA filter inside of the bin to prevent dust from escaping. This robotic vacuum also contains a 2,600 mAh lithium-ion battery that provides 2 hours’ worth of working time. When it’s time recharge, the robot vacuum self-connects to its charging dock.
1 ILIFE A4s Robot Vacuum Cleaner Review
With its brushed silver cover and gunmetal gray edges, the iLife A4s robot vacuum is a real looker. It’s also mega powerful. ILIFE integrated its proprietary CyclonePower cleaning system, which includes dual side brushes and a double-V brushroll that reduces tangles. Thanks to the CyclonePower system, the A4s can thoroughly clean all floors from hardwood to carpet.
By using the remote control, you can select one of the robot vacuum’s four cleaning modes – auto, edge, mini-room, and spot. Alternatively, you can set a schedule, which allows the vacuum to clean while you are sleeping or away from home. Its slim profile of 3 inches and a full suite of sensors ensure that the robot steers clear of falls and obstacles.
As far as run time goes, you get plenty. The lithium-ion battery lasts from 120 to 140 minutes on a single charge, covering approximately 2,100 square feet. The robot vacuum’s auto-docking feature means you won’t come home to a dead battery, and its high-performance filter prevents fine particles from contaminating the air.
Budget-Friendly Robot Vacuum Buyer’s Guide
Finding a great robot vacuum for under $200 is not an impossible task. You just have to know what features are important, such as multiple brushes, a long-lasting battery, and more than one cleaning mode. To help you get the most for your money, use this buyer’s guide while you comparison shop for a robot vacuum of your own.
The more brushes a robot vacuum has, the more thoroughly it can clean. Ideally, you want one with two side brushes; however, you can settle for a vacuum with one side brush as long as the robotvac also has a brushroll. If you have carpet, a central rolling brush is a must-have. While unnecessary, it’s nice if the manufacturer includes a set of spare side brushes.
When it comes to the battery, go for a high-quality one, preferably a lithium-ion battery. A lithium-ion battery won’t cause a reduction in suction when it’s low, and it will give you a long run time of at least an hour. Plus, the time it takes to recharge is usually no more than 5 hours. For added convenience, look for a robotic vacuum that self-docks.
Sometimes your floors only need daily maintenance. At other times, there may be scattered dirt and debris to clean. Therefore, you need a robot vacuum that offers cleaning modes for all your floor-cleaning tasks.
Auto mode is best suited for everyday vacuuming while one-room mode cleans a single room quickly. Edge mode is meant for vacuuming corners and baseboards, and scheduling mode lets you select a certain time of the day for the robot to run.
Even though you may not be able to tinker around with the robot’s internal components, manufacturers usually provide some information about the motor inside of their robotic vacuum cleaners. If it produces at least 1,000 pascals of suction, you’ll know the vacuum can handle heavy-duty tasks. If it has a brushless motor, that means the vacuum is quiet and less likely to break down.
Whether your home is minimalist or lived-in, there is furniture inside of it. Unless you want to go through the hassle of shuffling your furniture around, you’ll want a robot vacuum that is short. Go for a model that is no more than 3 inches in height to avoid dust bunny accumulation.
Robot vacuums are all about convenience, and their controls should reflect that concept. Opt for a robo vacuum with a remote. To make using it easy, the remote should have labeled or illustrated buttons. For times when you can’t find the remote, it’s helpful if the vacuum cleaner as a quick-start button on-board.
Nothing is more aggravating than having to constantly stop your robotic vacuum’s cleaning session to empty its dust bin. While this is an unavoidable task, you can reduce the number of times you need to do it by getting a robot vacuum cleaner with a large dirt capacity. A bin that can hold at least 300 milliliters of debris will save you time.
Airborne allergens do nothing for your health or your home’s cleanliness. Therefore, it’s crucial that your robot vacuum has a filter of some sort. If you suffer from allergies or own pets, a HEPA filter can help keep these particles out of the air.
Depending on the types of flooring in your house, a robot vacuum with a mop is a great bonus feature. If your home has wall-to-wall carpet, you obviously don’t need a robo vac with a wet mop.
If only some of the floors are carpeted or all of them are made of hard material and you want a robotic vacuum that can wet mop, look for a model that comes with a pad made of absorbent material like microfiber, releases even sprays of water and has a sizable reservoir.
|Best of the Best!||Best For Tight Spaces||Budget Pick (< $200)|
|Continuous||100 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|
|20 pounds||5.73 pounds||7.05 pounds|
Robot Vacuum Buying Guides
Best Robot Vacuum Cleaners
Best Robot Vacuum Mops
Best Affordable Robot Vacuums
Best Robot Vacuums for Hardwood Floors
Best Robot Vacuum for a Big House/Large Floor Space
Best Ecovacs Deebot Robot Vacuums
Best Eufy Robot Vacuums