Which brand of Robot Vacuum to buy?

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Which brand of Robot Vacuum to buy?

Postby TXB » March 26th, 2012, 4:21 pm

Hi,
I am looking to buy a new robot vacuum. I have already used the Samba Robot which wasn't good at all because it broke down after only 3 months. I am looking for a durable vacuum that I can use on a daily basis because I have a baby and I like to clean the carpets & flooring overnight so it's clean for him in the morning. We have no pets so the main thing we need it for is the carpet with mainly food crumbs on it and the kitchen/dining area which is floorboards.
All the robot vacuum companies claim their product does everything (apart from make coffee in the morning) but since we've had a bad and costly experience with the Samba, we are a bit more skeptical. If you can give me any advice of good brands of robot vacuums, it would be greatly appreciated.
Many thanks!
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Re: Which brand of Robot Vacuum to buy?

Postby Fraggboy » March 26th, 2012, 5:01 pm

TXB,

Welcome to Robot Reviews!

Are you looking for a specific make, like iRobot Roomba? There are other make's as well: Neato, Samsung, LG, Karcher. If you are wanting a specific make, we can assist which what model might suit your needs.

Also, what is the size of your home, # of rooms, etc to help us suggest one for you and your home. Price range?
Chris

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Re: Which brand of Robot Vacuum to buy?

Postby TXB » March 27th, 2012, 2:17 am

Hi Chris,
Thanks for that! I'm very glad I stumbled across this site. I was looking at the Roombas but I've read mixed reviews about them. I'd never heard of Neato until I read a few threads in this forum. Ideally what I'd like to know is based on my requirements, which brand and make would be the best. I am open to brands.
We will only be using it downstairs which has 2 sitting rooms, a large kitchen & dining area. The 2 sitting rooms are carpeted. The specs we would like is one that doesn't get stuck easily, preferably not too noisy, does a good job of picking up normal debris and one that has decent battery life. We found the Samba ran out of battery quickly which meant it generally cleaned two thirds of the area. I did like that we could do manual vacuuming with it as well because I could watch tv whilst vacuuming. :) Price range we would be looking for something under £400 (approx. $600 USD).
Many thanks
Tracey
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Re: Which brand of Robot Vacuum to buy?

Postby Fraggboy » March 27th, 2012, 10:44 am

Tracey,

I think ultimately you should read over the different forums and get a feel on what issues are coming up, and decide on what you can live with.

The Roomba's are overall pretty good. The main and biggest flaw is the CHM letting hair/debris enter the gearbox and causing issues. It has been overcome with a CHM sealed-bearing mod, which a member offers this service. I think you might want to get the model that has the Lighthouses, so you can break up your home in 'zones'. This is an invisible barrier.

The Neato is pretty good, but it has issues as well. the most frequent issues are the RPS error, and the wheel spring breaking the plastic connector, thus needing replaced. You have to use magnetic strips to barricade an area off-limits, which some might not like.

I have very little experience with the LG, and Samsung.

The Karcher is a well-built robotic vacuum, but it comes with the heaviest price tag, which turns some people away. There are the limitations as well.

Every robotic vacuum has their issues. Every robotic vacuum can get stuck. Some robotic vacuums require maintenance more frequently than others. It all depends on what you really want, and can live with.

Head on over to the Review section to read up on the different makes/models of robotic vacuums. Unfortunately, there is no cut and dry answer to give you (Too many variables). The robotic vacuum I personally use, might not work in your environment, or other variables that doesn't mesh (Too expensive, worried about warranty, wrong color, feature you want is missing, etc)..
Chris

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Re: Which brand of Robot Vacuum to buy?

Postby TXB » March 27th, 2012, 3:36 pm

Thanks for that information Chris (and the link to reviews). I had a good look through them and I now understand why there is no clear cut answer when it comes to these. Basically, they are all pretty bad.... BUT we love them because they are great! Catch 22. I had a look at the Karcher after reading some reviews. That seems to be the most reliable but woah, the price tag over in the UK is £800 with delivery which is double what I was hoping to spend.

So now it comes down to a decision to buy a normal one and replace it every 3-6 months or to fork out for a Karcher and hope they are reliable. Our Samba only lasted 3 months.... so that's all i've got to go on. If I could get 12 months out of a Roomba I'd be fairly content with that (not the 7 series, the 5 series).

The CHM technology, I understand that is in the 560's and above? If so that would be necessary (I have quite a bit of my hair that seems to fall out which my baby always manages to find when he's picking toys off the floor.) So while we don't have pets, we would need something that is good at picking up hair. lol.
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Re: Which brand of Robot Vacuum to buy?

Postby Fraggboy » March 27th, 2012, 3:44 pm

TXB wrote:The CHM technology, I understand that is in the 560's and above?

You are correct. The CHM was introduced in the 5xx series Roomba's. The 7xx does have a different design CHM, but it still does allow dust/debris to enter the gearhouse.


TXB wrote:So while we don't have pets, we would need something that is good at picking up hair. lol.

All of the robots I have used (Neato, Roomba, Karcher) picks up the hair well. The robots that use a brush-bar will keep the hair wrapped around the bar and it's a little bit harder to clean. The Neato has a rubber-type bar, in which doesn't keep the hair wrapped around the bar (As bad).

TXB wrote:So now it comes down to a decision to buy a normal one and replace it every 3-6 months or to fork out for a Karcher and hope they are reliable.


They are very reliable from what I have read. There are owners that have owned their Karcher for over 6 years, and are still on the original batteries!!! I can't comment myself, since I have only had mine for a little over a month.

You might be able to get 12 months out of a 5xx Roomba. It all depends on how well it was taken care of from the previous owner and such.

Decisions, decisions, decisions, ROFL.. :lol: If you have any more questions, please ask away. We will try our best to answer them for you.
Chris

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Re: Which brand of Robot Vacuum to buy?

Postby vic7767 » March 27th, 2012, 3:55 pm

If you do decide to purchase a Roomba, the members here will always help you to keep it running no matter which model you choose.
Roomba and Neato Mods, come visit: http://www.vic7767.com/

http://www.Robot-Doc.com/
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Re: Which brand of Robot Vacuum to buy?

Postby TechGuy » March 27th, 2012, 5:08 pm

Clean both ends of the Roomba brushes after each mission. If you let the hair and debris to accumulate at the brush end which mates with the CHM gear, the dirt have nowhere to go but forced into the gear box through the space between the CHM frame and the gears.
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Re: Which brand of Robot Vacuum to buy?

Postby robocleaner » March 27th, 2012, 8:42 pm

TXB wrote:I had a look at the Karcher after reading some reviews. That seems to be the most reliable but woah, the price tag over in the UK is £800 with delivery which is double what I was hoping to spend.

If you were to buy a Karcher, it'd be cheaper to buy one direct from a Karcher dealer in Germany, currently around £620 including shipping. It's still more than you were hoping to spend though.
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Re: Which brand of Robot Vacuum to buy?

Postby TXB » April 6th, 2012, 4:14 pm

Hi again,
We have been giving it much more thought and thinking we might go for a Karcher. My questions for this brand is it worth the extra price compared to the IRobot? Also, I see it doesn't have the side sweeper that gets into corners, under sofas etc. Does this impede the finished result? In addition, the docking station looks like the size of the death star... does it take up too much room?

I would be interested in buying directly from Germany as there is only one seller in the UK on Ebay for £770. Can anyone recommend a reputable (and preferably cheap) reseller?
Thanks for your help!
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Re: Which brand of Robot Vacuum to buy?

Postby Fraggboy » April 6th, 2012, 5:14 pm

TXB wrote:My questions for this brand is it worth the extra price compared to the IRobot?

It's well worth the price. The other Karcher owners will say the same. I have owned a Roomba Scheduler, Roomba 560, and the Neato XV-11. I got rid of them for several reasons. I didn't like to fiddle around with cleaning the brush, empty the dust bin, worrying about pet hair entering the gearbox/insides, and various errors, etc.

TXB wrote:Also, I see it doesn't have the side sweeper that gets into corners, under sofas etc. Does this impede the finished result?

I'm sure it does leave some debris that I can't visibly see. Every other weekend, I break out the Dyson to clean the edges and under the furniture.

TXB wrote:In addition, the docking station looks like the size of the death star... does it take up too much room?

Uh, it's not that bad. My fiance said the same thing. Especially the step up/down transformer that accompanies the base. You can see them in the pictures/videos of my review. After how well it cleans, teamed up with not needing to handle the robot/base after every run makes up for the larger base, and missing features. My Fiance LOVES the Karcher. It took her a bit longer to warm up to it, due to the price. Now, she keeps bragging about it at work, ROFL.

TXB wrote:I would be interested in buying directly from Germany as there is only one seller in the UK on Ebay for £770. Can anyone recommend a reputable (and preferably cheap) reseller?

I'm sure member robocleaner can assist you with the cheaper vendors.
Chris

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Re: Which brand of Robot Vacuum to buy?

Postby robocleaner » April 6th, 2012, 6:23 pm

Try looking here: http://www.ebay.de/sch/i.html?_nkw=k%C3%A4rcher+rc+3000
Not all sellers ship outside Germany, so you need to check each seller (there're even some used ones for sale too). I recently bought my second RC3000 from Media Deal who do ship to UK, currently listed there at 705e+35e shipping = £611 including VAT and delivery to UK - it arrived well packed (double boxed) and without any trouble. Your UK ebay account will work on ebay.de. The European RC3000's are exactly the same as the UK model; you only need to cut the european plug off and fit a standard UK one (or use an adaptor plug). You might also want to check other EU ebay sites just in case there's a better deal - French/Austrian for example. Hope that helps.
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