My review of the Roomba 780 cleaner

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Just purchased an iRobot Roomba 780 cleaner and thought I would post my thoughts and observations after 2 weeks of ownership. I have previously owned 3 of the 5xx series of Roomba (a non-lighthouse 560, a lighthouse-enabled 560, and a 570). Some of these thoughts may be repeats of what other owners have reported.

First the stuff I like that has been improved:

- The design of the new bristle rotating brush, including the new bearing design for the non-drive end. I have noticed quite a bit less hair getting caught up in this component, and I would believe (although unconfirmed until I disassemble the CHM) that little (if any) hair is making it into the gearbox.

- The new touchpad interface is very nice. Albeit it is very easy to accidently drag a knuckle over it and inadvertently activate a button.

- The new "full bin" indicator seems useful and works pretty well.

- The new HEPA style filters snap in more positively. I have had problems with the blue Aerovac 1 style filters occationally popping loose.

- The back and forth spot cleaning appears to be more effective than the previous generation's method of circling.

- Having a separate door for the battery is a nice touch.

Things I'm less than happy with:

- I was confused over what is meant by "50% better battery life" which I have seen reported on several web sites. For the record Irobot is only claiming the battery will last longer before it needs to be replaced, they are not making any claims for the 7xx series running longer on a single charge. My tests have confirmed this 780 runs almost identically the same amount of time on a charge as one of my 5xx series will with a fresh battery.

- The design of the rotating beater brush seems like a step backwards. Maybe this will improve with more runs but for whatever reason that one is getting completely wound up with hair after every mission. And each end features deep grooves which seem custom designed to be difficult to clean. My environment for the record is no pets but I have 2 girls with long hair. It could just be that my old 560 just wasn't doing a good job, and once the new one gets over the hump it will be less problematic, I don't know.

- The HEPA filters, while being more secure when they are installed, are much harder to get clean. Add to that there are now 2 of them you need to deal with each time as well. I have found the only way to get them clean is to take a hose vacuum cleaner to them.

That's about all I can think of right now. I was able to get a great deal on this cleaner ($375) from an owner that received it as a gift and didn't want it, so at that price point I am satisfied with my purchase so far. Had I been $600 in on this one I'm not sure but what it would be on it's way back right now. Not that it is a bad robot, but just not enough of an improvement over a 5xx series to justify that price.

If anyone has any questions I am happy to respond.

Thanks!

Comments

wait for the 800 series then

wait for the 800 series then

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