New 5XX Foolproof Cliff Sensor Work around

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Re: New 5XX Foolproof Cliff Sensor Work around

Postby cornflakes » October 22nd, 2009, 3:01 am

Hi everyone, I'm so glad I found this thread because my 550 refuses to get onto my dark area rugs, and when I put it up there manually, it doesn't want to travel too far on it because my rugs are striped with dark and light colors. With the paper trick, this problem is resolved. Excellent!

But a new problem has come up... Since doing this mod, the Roomba is climbing on my furniture and will get stuck. I have a corner table that's "Z" shaped (imagine the Z standing up, the base is horizontal and sits on the floor). One wheel will get up on it, the other will be on the ground, and it'll get stuck saying one of the wheels needs to be checked. It's also doing the same thing with my Ikea Poang chairs which has a similar design. The bases of my chairs and the corner table are about half an inch tall.

Without the paper mod, the Roomba knows to avoid these furniture just fine. Unfortunately the furniture's in the same room as my dark area rugs so I need the mod to work with the furniture. Does anyone have any ideas?

Thank you!
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Re: New 5XX Foolproof Cliff Sensor Work around

Postby vic7767 » October 22nd, 2009, 11:18 am

There really isn't going to be a solution to what your Roomba is doing unless you remove the cliff sensor paper only on one sensor at a time until the Roomba won't climb the furniture. You will still have to replace the paper when wanting to clean the rug.
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Re: New 5XX Foolproof Cliff Sensor Work around

Postby Gordon » October 22nd, 2009, 1:12 pm

cornflakes wrote:...a new problem has come up... , the Roomba is climbing on my ... corner table ... base is horizontal and sits on the floor). One wheel will get up on it, the other will be on the ground, and it'll get stuck saying one of the wheels needs to be checked. ... the furniture's in the same room as my dark area rugs so I need the mod to work with the furniture. Does anyone have any ideas?...
One idea is to apply strips of (decorative ) black tape to the base-plate edges!

I knew you'd really like doing that taping, heh heh, so here's a backup possibility...

Visit robot add-ons to check out their bumper cushion (soft_bumper):
http://www.robotaddons.com/

What you need is a downward extension to the 5XX-Bumper-Shell's lower edge. I can't tell whether that product will provide the necessary lowering, so you should converse with the people to hear what they say.

The 5XX Roomba is designed to be more capable at climbing thresholds, whereas the 4XXX, and earlier series, had bumpers with bottom edges so close to the floor that contacts with threshold strips would prevent Roomba from entering another room. That's the sort of bumper you need. You could buy a 4XX model! :-)

Back (2007) when the 5XXs arrived, iRobot developed a bumper extender attachment, but, as I recall, it was not well received. Try searching (use upper right box) for extender, to read some history about it.
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Re: New 5XX Foolproof Cliff Sensor Work around

Postby stonemonkey » December 13th, 2009, 10:04 pm

I have a 540 roomba and have tried everything. I've tried the packing tape method and now this paper method and its not solving my issue. The minute I try to hit the start button, I automatically get the check the cliff sensor error. Is it just worth me trying to returning it or does someone have any other tips on getting this to work?
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Re: New 5XX Foolproof Cliff Sensor Work around

Postby vic7767 » December 13th, 2009, 11:09 pm

If you have installed the paper workaround solution to your IR sensors (4) and are getting the error then your Roomba may possibly have a defective IR sensor. You can either have your Roomba replaced under warranty or you could try running the built in factory diagnostic tests to locate what sensor is failing.

Also, have you tried placing your Roomba on a floor surface that is not dark and send it on a CLeaning mission? If the Roomba runs and does not complain then you need to reapply the white strips and make sure that each sensor is completely covered.
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Re: New 5XX Foolproof Cliff Sensor Work around

Postby whitey019 » December 25th, 2009, 1:49 pm

I just bought a 532 for my wife for Christmas and unbeknownst to me the Roomba does not work on balck carpets as mentioned. I've found this forum and have tried the paper trick but it does not work. With the paper applied I get the "Move Roomba to a new locations the press CLEAN to restart" message on any surface. Without the paper it works fine on ligther surfaces just not the black carpet. Any suggestions?
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Re: New 5XX Foolproof Cliff Sensor Work around

Postby vic7767 » December 25th, 2009, 3:49 pm

If you install the proper size and pay attention to the area the Good Quality White Paper covers on the sensor is applied to you should be good to go.
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Re: New 5XX Foolproof Cliff Sensor Work around

Postby whitey019 » December 26th, 2009, 1:44 pm

I got it working!

Thanks.......Merry Christmas and Happy New Year
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Re: New 5XX Foolproof Cliff Sensor Work around

Postby tillie1001 » January 15th, 2010, 1:14 pm

I just wanted to say thank you so much for this forum and all the help coming from everyone envolved.... I have had a case of OCD over the last couple of days starting with my scooba...with tech support at i-robot telling me I needed a whole new Scooba, in reality I didnt... then I found this forum and with all your help IT WORKS!!!! I have also had the black rug issue with my discovery and with this forum was able to eliminate that problem, my roomba has been just sitting since I replaced my rugs over 6 months ago.... and since I have no stairs, this fix is perfect.... and on top of it all I own the original roomba, that has been in a box for over 3 years due to the stair sensor going bonkers that by using the same paper technique made my original also work again.... the original is a work horse and I was so depressed when nobody could fix it. Thank You all so very much.... and I will continue to check in to see if I can ever repay the favor to another! :)
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Re: New 5XX Foolproof Cliff Sensor Work around

Postby jocker » February 27th, 2010, 6:12 pm

Got wally world carpet withs squares of different colors...pissed of cliff sensors no end.
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Re: New 5XX Foolproof Cliff Sensor Work around

Postby mgudites » March 21st, 2010, 12:04 am

I have tried the paper, I've tried the trick with the foil...nothing seems to work. With the paper, my Roomba will no longer dock itself.

Is there a way for me to take apart the Roomba and just DISCONNECT the cliff sensors? Has anyone done this with success? I realize it's not supported...I don't care anymore :)
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Re: New 5XX Foolproof Cliff Sensor Work around

Postby vic7767 » March 21st, 2010, 12:43 am

Blocking the Cliff sensors with paper will not have any effect on the Roomba docking system. Different sensors are used for docking. Try relocating the home base just a few inches left or right, look for IR interference or reflections from other objects in the room. Check that other IR accessories like a Light House or Virtual Wall are not interfering with the Roomba sensors.
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Re: New 5XX Foolproof Cliff Sensor Work around

Postby Gordon » March 21st, 2010, 12:44 am

mgudites wrote:...Is there a way for me to take apart the Roomba and just DISCONNECT the cliff sensors? Has anyone done this with success? I realize it's not supported...I don't care anymore :)
No electrical disconnection is required, all you have to do is tape a couple components (in each cliff-module) together. See this thread:
viewtopic.php?f=1&t=10458
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Re: New 5XX Foolproof Cliff Sensor Work around

Postby kmmatney » June 3rd, 2010, 2:09 pm

For my Dirt Dog, using aluminium foil tape did the trick. Its also very easy to install, and it naturally wraps around sensor opening. However my dirt dog gets real dirty, so I still had to replace the tape every month. I eventually employed a permanent "fix" to the problem by taking apart the sensors, and taping the IR source and detector together, on each each sensor. This was easy for the outer sensors - I just put the source and detector next to each other, and taped them together with electrical tape. The inner sensors were more difficult. since the wire lengths didn't allow the sensors to be placed next to each other. So I ended up placing the source and detector on each side of a plastic straw, cut to 1" in length. The straw gives the source and detector a direct line of sight, so now the cliff sensors are all permanently bypassed, but if I really wanted to, I could restore them again (I kept the sensor platic housings).
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Re: New 5XX Foolproof Cliff Sensor Work around

Postby vic7767 » July 25th, 2010, 11:28 am

Glad to have helped.
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Re: New 5XX Foolproof Cliff Sensor Work around

Postby luxpot » November 20th, 2010, 2:19 pm

WE ARE SO HAPPY -thank you! Our house is filled with dark/black area rugs and "Ruby" avoided them. I love her but hated this flaw! The customer service people were NO HELP! We tried tin foil, tapes of all kinds - WHITE PAPER? BRILLIANT - THANK YOU!!!!!!!!
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Re: New 5XX Foolproof Cliff Sensor Work around

Postby roboroomba » November 21st, 2010, 10:24 am

When my roomba stops working and I want to see what is going on under neath I do a similar thing with index cards and masking tape. When after I am done i will just pull them off
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Re: New 5XX Foolproof Cliff Sensor Work around

Postby johnhst » January 1st, 2011, 12:07 pm

While trying to disable the cliff sensors on my 530, I tried all the different white paper/tape tricks and all ended with a warning from my robot to move to a different area. I finally realized my machine had the sensors mounted level with the surrounding surface and there is a barrier between the LED and the receiver. (See photo 1) My tape and paper were closing off any path for the light to travel from the LED to the receiver and had nothing to do with reflectivity of the paper. My solution was to cut a small light channel from a pen cover (photo 2) and tape it over the sensor with aluminum duct tape (photo 3). Any tape will do but the aluminum duct tape should last longer than masking or scotch tape. This light channel allows the light to reflect from the LED to the receiver. Hope this help solve some of the cliff sensor disable problems.
Cliff Sensor copy.jpg
Attachments
Taped on Sensor copy.jpg
Light Chanel copy.jpg
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Re:

Postby iMayne » June 20th, 2011, 11:07 am

Fraggboy wrote:...iRobot will render your warranty useless, since this voids the warranty.. ;)


No. They will never find out. All you need to do is remove the tape :lol:
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Re: New 5XX Foolproof Cliff Sensor Work around

Postby Stizzerio » June 20th, 2011, 2:39 pm

Thank you very much! It worked with my Roomba 555!
I first tried the thing with alumunum foil but didn't work.
Now I've got high quality paper with white tape on the sensor and it is currently cleaning my black carpet!
I can cancel my appointment to bring it back to the store now.

Very happy and I hope it will do its job for a long time!
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