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Robot vacuums are great, but they can be expensive!
You don't need to spend $700+ on a Roomba, but if you have that sort of budget, there are a handful of other options that are far superior. The Roomba is by far not the best robot vacuum.
According to our tests, the best Roomba alternative is the Neato Botvac D7. While its not much cheaper, it's a far a better quality vacuum for its price point. It is smarter, has a better battery, and will give your floors a more consistent clean than any Roomba model on the market.
While most of the more high end Roomba models are impressive, they aren't the best of the best at their price point. If you're going for cheap, the Roomba 600 series model is probably one you're considering, but for the technology and what that robot vacuum can do, there are cheaper alternatives.
Here's a quick preview of the handful of robot vacuums we tested that we felt were superior to Roomba.
6 Best iRobot Roomba Alternatives:
If you're looking for an alternative to Roomba, the best overall option is the Neato Botvac D7 but there are several options, depending on exactly what you're looking for.
- Neato Botvac D7 - Top Roomba Alternative - If you're looking for the top of the line Roomba alternative, this bad boy should be your first choice. It has intelligent navigation, and a great app interface that makes keeping your floors clean a breeze.
- iLife A8 - Best Entry Level Roomba Alternative - This robot vacuums isn't that much less expensive than other entry level Roombas, but you get a better value for what you pay for.
- Shark IQ Robot Self-Empty XL R101AE - Best Lower Maintenance Option - This robot vacuum has a relatively big base station that can hold up to one months' worth of debris and dust and comes with a self-cleaning brushroll and numerous advanced features for a low-maintenance experience.
- Yeedi Vac Robot Vacuum - Most Quiet - If the thought of a noisy operation has been putting you off of purchasing a robot vacuum, it's time to check out the Yeedi Vac Robot Vacuum. This self-emptying vacuum has multiple cleaning modes and increases the suction automatically for a much deeper clean anytime it detects carpet.
- Coredy R500 - Best for All Surfaces - The Coredy R500 is a vacuum cleaner that delivers a simple design with strong and automated cleaning performances. It comes with a low profile, thus enabling it to maneuver around obstacles in your home and slide under furniture with ease.
- Ecovacs Deebot N79S - Most Convenient - This is the most convenient Roomba alternative because of its straightforward setup and handling process. You can run it through Google Assistant and Alexa or use Ecovacs' app to clean your home.
- Easy to set up
- Laser guided smart navigation
- In app "no-go" lines allow you to block off areas of your home without physical barriers
- Sends text alerts for maintenance and troubleshooting
- Louder than most other robot vacuums
- Socks. It always gets stuck on socks!
More About The Neato BotVac Connected
The Neato Botvac D7 connected is truly the best of the best. While it is much more expensive than just about every other robot vacuum out there, you definitely get a superior product. Where the Botvac D7 Connected really shines is its navigation ability. This vacuum will take an initial scan of your home then use that when its cleaning in the future.
Within the app, you have the ability to set areas of your home where you want your Neato Botvac to avoid. This means that if you have a room that is always messy, you don't have to worry about keeping up physical barriers or having to clean up before your robot can vacuum the area.
One key thing to note about this vacuum is that it is LOUD. It cannot run while you're home without it disturbing you. That being said, its suction power is incredibly strong and it will leave your floors looking beautiful.
Another great feature of this vacuum is its scheduling and zone cleaning. Say you have a cat and you want the vacuum to clean around the litter box every day, just set up a zone in the app and schedule it. The Botvac D7 will clean this specific area on a schedule as often as you'd like. You can sprinkle zone schedules in with full home cleaning schedules as well.
- Incredibly efficient. It can clean a room in under 10 minutes
- It is a very low profile unit, meaning it can fit under most furniture without an issue
- It has decent cleaning ability, although it does sacrifice quality for efficiency in some cases.
- Works well on carpet as well as bare floors
- Has more features for its price point than the Roomba 960
- Sacrifices attention to detail for speed
- It does not come with a smartphone app. To control it, you need to use the included remote control
- Lacks edge cleaning ability
More About The ILife 8
The ILife A8 is not considerably less expensive than some Roomba models, but for the features you get, it is arguably a better bargain. This super slimline robot vacuum is great for its price point. Unlike other models under $300, this robot vacuum has a camera-powred navigation system, so it actually knows where it's going.
If something goes wrong with the vacuum, it will literally let you know. It has a voice prompt for status updates so you always know what your vacuum wants...who knew that would be something to look forward to?
- Camera navigation system
- 3 built-in data chips to help with route planning
- 3 stage cleaning which includes suction, two side brushes and a motorized brush
- Voice prompt for status updates, such as cleaning or error codes
- Out of the box, you get a bristle brush for carpets and a double V brush that can be used on bare floors.
If you're on the fence between this vacuum and another slightly cheaper option, bare in mind that one of the biggest considerations with the ILife A8 is its advanced navigation system. With the combination of a camera and the 3 data chips, the A8 is able to clean in a predictable pattern, rather than in random directions.
Some other vacuums that may be $50-$100 cheaper lack this. Generally speaking, super cheap vacuums use the "hit a pivot" methods which means they go strait until they hit something, then change directions. This leads to a pretty random clean that misses areas almost every time it cleans.
Related Content: Used Roomba
- Works with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa
- Maps your home and supports area cleaning, virtual no-go zones, and scheduling
- Features a self-cleaning brushroll and a bagless self-emptying base
- Scheduled cleaning
- Excellent suction
- Can get loud
- Average battery life
More About the Shark IQ Robot Self-Empty XL R101AE
One of the main reasons for having a robot vacuum is to make cleaning easier and to cut down on your house chores. However, most of these gadgets need to be cleaned and emptied often, thus adding another chore to your list. If you've been looking for a low-maintenance vacuum, it's time to check out the Shark IQ Robot XL R101AE. It works effectively and features a large dustbin that only needs to be cleaned and emptied after every 30 days. Plus, you won't have to worry about your vacuum getting stuck under your furniture and around your carpet anymore.
You can control your robot vacuum by simply using your voice or with your phone and set up about 30 days of cleaning schedules for a truly automated cleaning experience. What's more, the Shark IQ Robot Self-Empty XL R101AE maps your home as it cleans, meaning you can create virtual no-go zones and even send it to a specific room. It's also a solid choice for pet owners as it comes with a self-cleaning brushroll and has a significantly stronger suction to suck fur from carpeting.
Although the IQ Robot XL doesn't have a remote, you can control it with your phone through the SharkClean App, with your voice commands, or with the Clean and Dock buttons located on top of your vacuum. In between these buttons, you'll find an IQ navigation module, which enables your robot vacuum to map your home and study its location.
Situated inside the vacuum's dustbin is a filter that captures airborne dust and allergens as it cleans. On the bottom, this robot features two side brushes and a brushroll that filters human and pet hair into the dustbin, preventing it from getting wrapped around the roll.
More About the Yeedi Vac Robot Vacuum
Priced at about $499, the Yeedi Vac Robot vacuum mops and vacuums at the same time. It sweeps up dust and debris effectively with a strong suction power of 3000 pa. And when it mops, its built-in carpet detection sensor recognizes your carpet automatically and avoids mopping it.
Featuring a self-empty station capable of holding up to a months' worth of dirt and debris, the Yeedi Vac Robot Vacuum smartly sucks the dust and other particles from your dustbin and into the dust bag located in the self-empty station. This means you can now say goodbye to frequent dustbin maintenance and cleanings.
This vacuum cleaner's visual mapping technology works efficiently with a floor tracking sensor, which enables it to trace your living space, thus ensuring no sides or corners in your home go untouched. What's more, its home map is editable, so you can tap the map to choose a specific area where the robot will clean or draw up a targeted room where it will steer away from.
The Yeedi Vac Robot Vacuum works well with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa, enabling you to use voice commands to clean your home. If you're in the market for a long-lasting and ultra-quiet robot vacuum cleaner, Yeedi's Vac might be your holy grail.
- Five cleaning mode
- Safety features, such as the anti-collision technology and the edge detection keep your vacuum out of harm's way.
- Suction control
- 120 minutes runtime
- It struggles with fine dirt
- Gets stuck frequently
More About the Coredy R500
The Coredy R500 is as impressive as its predecessor, the Coredy R300. For starters, it has a significantly strong suction power, sitting at 1400 pa. It also has a remote control, which allows you to control the exact movement of your machine and set it in specific cleaning modes. This feature makes the Coredy R500 a completely hands-free cleaning system.
Another fantastic feature of this robot vacuum is its ability to set cleaning schedules. For instance, you can set it to clean your home each day at exactly 11:00 pm. So, without even having to touch your vacuum, it will drive itself off from the charging base and start to clean once the clock strikes 11:00 pm.
Removing and emptying the dustbin is also relatively easier. All you need to do to remove the dustbin is to pinch down on the latch situated along the perimeter of your machine and pull out the dustbin.
More About the Ecovacs Deebot
This robot vacuum boasts up to four cleaning modes. This includes the Auto, which works on your entire floor, the Edge, which takes care of the boundaries, and the spot, which pays attention to a concentrated area. Max mode, on the other hand, doubles the suction power in case of stubborn dirt.
When you're done cleaning, the fifth button tells the machine to move towards the charging station. Through the app, you can see how much battery your vacuum cleaner has, and schedule it to turn on at specific times, especially when you're out running errands.
Although the Ecovacs Deebot N79S might look like a normal robot vacuum, with its front-mounted corner brushes and low-profile circular shape, it isn't as futuristic as other models on the market. On the front of the vacuum, there's an array of sensors and a series of guards to protect it in case of a collision. On the top, you'll find one button, which enables you to put your robot vacuum in auto mode or to switch it on and off.
This robot vacuum comes with a high-efficiency filter, main brush, and four side brushes. You'll also get a charging dock and remote control with batteries.
What Does A Roomba Cost and Why Do People Love Them So Much?
The Roomba 980 is currently their most expensive model, coming in at just around $700 according to their website.
The less expensive 960 model comes in at right under $600, making it not too far behind.
However, there are some models that are much less expensive than this. The Roomba 690, for example, is a Wifi enabled vacuum and includes some of the features that make Roomba great, such as 3 stage cleaning and intelligent sensors.
Prices always vary depending on where you look, but you can typically find this model for under $375 (and sometimes it's on sale!). This is a much more digestible price point for a lot of people.
Roomba have been around for years, and people love them because they were innovative. However, the technology behind them has gotten cheaper, which makes room for a variety of great Roomba alternatives.
Features To Consider When Looking At Roombas & Other Robot Vacuums
Whether you are thinking of buying a Roomba or any alternatives, you need to consider the features you get and at what price point.
1. Navigation Ability:
Your vacuums ability to navigate can make or break it. A good vacuum will be able to efficiently navigate a room, avoid obstacles, and return to its dock.
2. IR Sensors:
Most of the products on this list will cap their cleaning ability at 2 rooms. This is due to budget constraints not allowing for a more advanced navigation system and proper sensors. If you have a house with more than 2 rooms, paying the extra money for advanced navigation sensors is worth it. If you have a smaller house or apartment, you can get away with the basic IR navigation.
You want a vacuum that cleans well. That's pretty obvious. A good vacuum should have the suction that is capable of removing dirt from carpets, wood, and tile. However, if you are expecting deep cleaning, you aren't going to get that from any robot vacuum. They are just too small and lack the power to deep clean so make sure your expectations are in check.
4. Wifi Connectivity:
In this day and age, everything is connected to the internet. This is especially true if you have a smart home. Your vacuum is no different! Having wifi connectivity will allow you to access your vacuum even when you aren't home. All you need to do this is an internet connection and a router. Additionally, if your vacuum is wifi enabled, you'll be able to see all the important stats such as schedules and battery life within the app.
What Is The Best Roomba Alternative?
With so many different robot vacuums out there, it's genuinely difficult to answer this question. The best Roomba alternative for you depends on what you're looking for. Do you want something with more power? More features? More affordable? Once you know what you want, it's easy to select the best Roomba alternative for your lifestyle.
Well, that's it! Regardless of the reason you're looking for a Roomba alternative, be it price, features, or you are just looking for a smaller brand, these four robot vacuums are a great pick.
Now it's your turn.
What features do you look for when considering a robot vacuum? Let us know in the comments section below!