Battery Run-times?

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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby yakky » November 12th, 2012, 9:31 pm

I got a xv-21 w/3.0 from woot two weeks ago and was getting 20 minute run times. Removal and sw reset of the batteries didn't help. My robot had a 165xx serial number. He has been replaced with a xv-14 w/2.6 from Costco. The first run time for the xv-14 was 56 minutes which destroys the first run time of the xv21 which IIRC was 16 minutes.
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby denodan » December 12th, 2012, 5:49 am

JEfromCanada wrote:You should not be trying the "new battery" option with a new neato. The new unit needs time to "break in" the battery and reach an optimal level.



Think you really have to hit new battery, this is the first thing you must do to get max life from battery. Just got a Neato, and hit new battery before trying out my Neato, tried it out, did my room in 15 mins, the battery indicator on the LCD screen was hardly down, so estimate will get 60+ mins, and this is on carpet, so think the secret is hit new battery before using Neato.
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby vic7767 » December 12th, 2012, 1:48 pm

I've now managed to gather some experience with the various Neato models and firmware revisions. None of the models I've ordered and received were exposed to the "NEW BATTERY" menu option but they were allowed to charge for a minimum of 12 hours prior to the first cleaning session. The only time a short cleaning run was experienced was with a new model XV-21 with firmware 3.0. Later it was discovered that it was not the model or firmware release that caused the short run times but was a batch of poor performing battery cells. The 12 hour break-in trickle charging session helps each individual cell (twelve in all) achieve their individual maximum capacity charge that contributes to the overall run time.

It is a well known fact that heat is not a friend to the NiMH battery and speeds up the overall operational life of the twin packs used within the Neato chassis. Therefore exposing the Neato battery packs to an additional heat stress that is presented to each cell during the New Battery option from the menu is not going to help the overall performance and run time of your new Neato. If after you have received your new Neato and charged it overnight, sent it on a cleaning run and gotten a low run time remember that these packs will improve that run time and reach their maximum ability only after about 4 or 5 cleaning runs. If after all that effort with your new Neato you still experience short run times then contact NeatoRobotics customer service for a new set of packs.

Of course this is just my experience and opinion.
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby neato » December 12th, 2012, 3:46 pm

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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby kamiraa » December 12th, 2012, 11:26 pm

vic7767 wrote:I've now managed to gather some experience with the various Neato models and firmware revisions. None of the models I've ordered and received were exposed to the "NEW BATTERY" menu option but they were allowed to charge for a minimum of 12 hours prior to the first cleaning session. The only time a short cleaning run was experienced was with a new model XV-21 with firmware 3.0. Later it was discovered that it was not the model or firmware release that caused the short run times but was a batch of poor performing battery cells. The 12 hour break-in trickle charging session helps each individual cell (twelve in all) achieve their individual maximum capacity charge that contributes to the overall run time.

It is a well known fact that heat is not a friend to the NiMH battery and speeds up the overall operational life of the twin packs used within the Neato chassis. Therefore exposing the Neato battery packs to an additional heat stress that is presented to each cell during the New Battery option from the menu is not going to help the overall performance and run time of your new Neato. If after you have received your new Neato and charged it overnight, sent it on a cleaning run and gotten a low run time remember that these packs will improve that run time and reach their maximum ability only after about 4 or 5 cleaning runs. If after all that effort with your new Neato you still experience short run times then contact NeatoRobotics customer service for a new set of packs.

Of course this is just my experience and opinion.


I need to give an A+++ to Neato's customer service. I don't know to many places that keep someone on staff 24/7, and obviously native English.

Neato, we appreciate that.

So I bought two Neato's one for upstairs, one for downstairs.

With the maximum attempts to clean the floor, it wasn't getting full coverage on either floor. It would end up giving up, so close, but so far.

The strange thing is, I wanted to figure out how well the Neato would work (pretty well), and where it would get caught (a lot of random places). So I had to "neato proof" area's it would climb up on, or get stuck under, by repositioning furniture, or placing tape around speaker stands, pedestals, under consoles. Along the way (while working, and relaxing, I would set the time watch to record all runs.

I gave the Neato 3 days of attempts (9 recharges), and the result was sub-par battery life. Around 16 minutes average with one, and 37 minutes average with another (mix of carpet and tile).

After speaking with Neato they sent me out a replacement battery (old style it seems, with an older build date code), and it WORKED GREAT. Took almost a full day to charge, but it netted 50 minutes the first outing out. Maybe will even get better a few charges out!

If these batteries will require replacement more often, so be it, I want to get full coverage. Overall great product, very happy, it's knocking out the floors.

If only they could figure out how not to hump my speakers, without surrounding everyone with their tape (I had to get an extra 12 feet to prevent damage of the glossy expensive speakers).
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby donnoj » December 15th, 2012, 1:46 am

I picked up two xv-21's and the run times sucked on both. Firmware 3.0. It would run for about 10 minutes on medium/low height carpet and maybe 30 on hard flooring. It would also make a clicking/screeching noise on the carpet.

I decided to switch out the brush with the old style and it handled the carpet much better with no strange noises. Louder on the hard flooring though. Why do they included the additional brush? It must be because it handles certain carpets better. Although I don't believe they indicate that in manual.

Bottom line is I have a 1700 sqft home and both Neato's are unable to clean the whole house in 3 attempts. I even have gone as far as removing obstacles such as chairs so it wouldn't spend as much time going around each leg. I've also run the units for several days, so their have been several charges and discharges.

I recently ordered the one from Costco since a few posts indicate good run times. If all goes well I may switch out the filter for a HEPA style but keep the brush as it seems the new pet brush has more friction and uses more battery.

I'd be interested to know if anyone has tried replacing the brushes on the pet model with the plastic squeegee. That way you keep the action of moving debris toward the suction inlet but remove the additional friction caused by the brush material.
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby donnoj » December 18th, 2012, 10:12 pm

My XV-14 arrived today! I must say the color looks much better than the XV-21. But, I concerned with performance.

The pet brush seems nice on the XV-21. It quiet on hard floors but hated my carpet. It made a screeching clicking sound on carpet with the pet brush. In order to get any run time at all on carpet I had to switch out the brush with the older style. Unfortunately, it was only getting 30 minutes on hard floors and about 10 on carper. Even after several recharges. Not enough time to clean my 1700 sqft home in 3 passes. Even closing a bedroom door and letting it work on one room at at time was annoying, as it would usually run out of power and need a recharge before it was finished. Not musch of a helper, especially when your waiting for it to recharge. My goal was to have this thing scheduled and doing the dirty work while I was at work not babysitting it.

An interesting note: The XV-14 came shipped with the battery unplugged. There were instructions on how to access it and plug it in for the first time. I'm wondering if this has anything to do with the short run times with the XV-21.

Anyway, the XV-14 is plugged in and charging. I plan on leaving it charging for a full 12 houes before trying it out for the first time. If the run times are close to advertised I will be a very happy customer and may opt to get the upgraded filter and brush for it.
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby donnoj » December 19th, 2012, 12:04 pm

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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby donnoj » December 27th, 2012, 12:46 am

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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby ilpirata » January 7th, 2013, 7:55 am

My XV-25 also runs for less than 40minutes, i.e. 37-38 after five-six cleaning cycles.
I think it is a too low running time, making the neato not very useful for big houses.
Do you think they would replace my batteries?
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby dashingemt » January 22nd, 2013, 11:21 pm

I'd kill for a 35-40 min run time in my 21. I havnt been able to go past 17 minutes (usually closer to 14). I received new batteries today and they are charging up so I'm hoping for a huge improvement.
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby ilpirata » January 23rd, 2013, 7:34 am

The last runtime was almost 50 minutes (I have a xv-25). Starting to get decent, even though I would appreciate a 60-70 minutes of runtime like the old Neatos.
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby dashingemt » January 23rd, 2013, 1:53 pm

After an overnight charge I got a record 21 minutes. This is the most I have ever seen but still not close to what I need. I selected the new battery option as instructed. I know I have to cycle the battery a few times to get "optimal performance" but I am scared that I will never see anything close to 40 minutes let alone the hour I was hoping for. In my house there is no way it can get done in the 3 cycle limit unless I get some serious run time increases.
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby ilpirata » January 23rd, 2013, 1:59 pm

dashingemt wrote:After an overnight charge I got a record 21 minutes. This is the most I have ever seen but still not close to what I need. I selected the new battery option as instructed. I know I have to cycle the battery a few times to get "optimal performance" but I am scared that I will never see anything close to 40 minutes let alone the hour I was hoping for. In my house there is no way it can get done in the 3 cycle limit unless I get some serious run time increases.


I think the runtime is so short that there must be some problem with the electronic of the device.
As they claim that the runtime is at least 20 minutes, I think you are entitled for a substitution (or you should be asked to sent the neato for it to be rapaired).

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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby dashingemt » January 23rd, 2013, 2:00 pm

I havnt ruled out sending it back for replacement. I do want to give these new batteries a fair shake but I can't see it going well.
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby dashingemt » January 24th, 2013, 4:44 am

So I returned the 21 and picked up the 14 from costco. Right out of the box (literally right out of the box) I got 38 minutes. I loaded the 3.1 firmware and am letting it charge overnight to see what I can really get out of it. But I must say I am (cautiously) excited. The only thing is it got stuck under my couch. The 21 made it through with no effort. Is the 14 taller?
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby donnoj » January 24th, 2013, 11:28 pm

I tried two 21's, run times sucked on both. I switched to the one from Costco and it ran long enough to be actually usable. The quality of the units sucks though. I had problems with one of the 21's and am now on my second 14 with a replacement charging base on the way. I'm now getting battery error 0004, a screen that sometimes displays upside down and the unit things it's charging all the time. Customer support said it was a sync issue with the charging base...we'll see :roll:
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby dashingemt » January 24th, 2013, 11:44 pm

My new 14 is hovering around 38 minutes per run. Still need to give it time to reach its peak (I hope it still is yet to peak) but this one is having trouble going back to its base. Has gotte lost twice and once it stopped inches away. Going to try a couple new base positions. I want to like this so bad because my living room looks fabulous and with a baby on the way and two crazy shedding dogs it's awesome not having hair everywhere!
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby ilpirata » January 25th, 2013, 9:59 am

dashingemt wrote:My new 14 is hovering around 38 minutes per run. Still need to give it time to reach its peak (I hope it still is yet to peak) but this one is having trouble going back to its base. Has gotte lost twice and once it stopped inches away. Going to try a couple new base positions. I want to like this so bad because my living room looks fabulous and with a baby on the way and two crazy shedding dogs it's awesome not having hair everywhere!

Have you upgraded the software to the last version?
That could help.

Regards,
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Re: Battery Run-times?

Postby donnoj » January 25th, 2013, 10:24 am

I've never had over 30 on any of my units. Even on hard floors with most of the obstacles removed and after many charges and drains to supposedly condition the batteries. My best times are with the 14 on hard floors with the pet brush. I get better times on wall to wall carpet with the beater brush, so I have to switch them all the time depending on the job.

My original idea was was to schedule daily automatic whole house vacuuming while at work, but none of the units I've had could achieve this even after the suspended recharges. I'd always come home to a partially cleaned house and sometimes the vac wouldn't find it's base to recharge. I found, for me, it's easier to just manually run the vac on a room by room basis by closing doors. This method supplements my weekly manual cleanings I do with a regular vac and seems to have cut down on dusting.

On a daily basis, It's still quicker for me to to vacuum my main areas (kitchen, dinning, hall, bath and living room) with my Dyson. Theses are all hard floors and I can get it done in 8 minutes verses the hours it would take the neato. Unfortunately, I can't trust the neato to get it done on a consistant basis, so I'ts just quicker for me to vacuum the old fashioned way than to try to figure out what the robot missed.
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