- Robot vacuums today typically come with an app, enabling users to operate set up a schedule and connect their vacuum to smart speakers.
- Prices range from about $250 to more than $800.
- The price difference comes down suction power and the number of sensors, which allow higher-end models to map spaces and better detect obstacles.
Robot vacuum technology has advanced significantly over the past 20 years. Vacuums that pick up dirt without the aid of human muscle have proven to be one of homeowners’ favorite little helpers. It pays to keep up with the technology so you can answer clients’ questions.
Like many electronic devices, today’s robot vacuums come with an app, enabling users to set up a cleaning schedule, connect the vacuum to either Google Home or Amazon Alexa devices, and get real time alerts when the robot needs attention, such as when it’s time to empty the debris bin. The biggest difference between a $250 model and one that can cost $800 or more is how it navigates. Higher-end models offer more sensors, sometimes including lidar light and depth sensors to detect obstacles and upward-facing cameras that map spaces.
Entry-Level (less than $300)
Eufy 30C ($220): Larger wheels help it roll over carpets and ledges. Its slightly lower profile is great for getting under furniture. Magnetic boundary strips placed throughout the house can help the vacuum avoid selected areas. Best features: Up to 1,500 pascals (Pa) of suction and nine anti-collision infrared sensors.
Wyze Robot Vacuum ($268): This vacuum has a processor commonly used in smartphones. Its lidar sensor spins to measure the distance to 2,016 different points in the room. Best features: 2,000 Pa of suction and synchronous positioning and mapping tech to optimize cleaning routes.
Roborock S6 ($520): On top of a spinning lidar sensor, this model adds an accelerometer, odometer, infrared sensor, and compass to assist with mapping. Many models also include a mopping attachment and can detect which type of surface is being cleaned. Best features: It recognizes up to four floor plans, so it’s great for a multilevel home. Artificial intelligence helps it avoid objects. The S6 has up to 2,500 Pa of suction power and an E11-rated filter that captures up to 95% of allergens.
Neato D7 ($600): Neato was the first company to create a Wi-Fi–connected, app-enabled robot vacuum and the first to adopt lidar. Best features: Recognizes up to three floor plans. Users can create zone areas and virtual no-go lines in the app. The D7 includes a HEPA-style filter and up to 2,000 Pa of suction. Its D-shaped brush reaches tight corners.
High-End (more than $600)
Roborock S7 ($650): The S7 uses an all-rubber main brush and a sonic vibration that, when paired with its mop, helps lift dried-on dirt like mud or coffee stains. Best features: The S7 can automatically empty the dustbin while docked at its charging port. It has 2,500 Pa of suction and a snap-on mop unit, and it can identify rooms across up to four levels.
Roomba s9+ ($1,100): iRobot developed the first robot vacuum in 2002. The s9+’s smart sensors and iRobot’s vSLAM navigation technology capture more than 230,400 data points per second to create smart maps. Users can label areas through the app and give commands such as “Alexa, tell Roomba to clean under the kitchen table.” Best features: A dock where the vacuum empties its dustbin, 2,500 Pa of suction, and a filter that captures 99% of pet dander.