Vacuum Review: Roomba

October 17, 2011





Roomba 530





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 Residential:x      Commercial:      Heavy Duty:



Since the first time I saw one of these machines about ten years ago, I’ve thought, what a great idea, the house gets vacuumed and I don’t have to do it; simply brilliant. Now, after all this time, I finally got to try one and I was not disappointed.

For those of you not familiar with the Roomba it is a small round, battery operated, robot vacuum cleaner. You turn it on; it vacuums an entire room, then finds its way back to the charger and parks itself there. It charges overnight and then it’s ready to go again. It doesn’t get much easier. So how good does it work?

As much as I liked the Roomba, it’s not ready to replace my regular upright just yet. What it will do though, is cut down on how often I have to use it. The Roomba does not have the power of my upright, but who cares; it’s a robot and I can turn it on every day. If the soil never gets ground down into the carpet, you don’t need much suction to pick it up. Also if you have hardwood or tile floors, this little machine will do wonders at picking up the dust and pet hair.

The Roomba works just like most vacuums in that it has suction, a counter rotating brush and beater brush, and a debris container. It’s programmed to work its way around the room and it does so very well. I set up a few obstacles and was very surprised when it maneuvered its way around all of them. Its entire circumference is a non marking rubber bumper that compresses when it hits a wall, furniture etc. The machine then turns and keeps on working. There is a spinning brush that sticks out from under and does a good job of getting right up to the wall. My favorite feature though is that the machine is short enough to go under the bed. Yes, it dodges the bed posts and gets up all that dust that you normally leave behind. A few people have also asked me how come it stays in one room and doesn’t fall down the stairs. Magic would be the cool answer; but in reality it comes with two battery operated virtual walls. They put out a beam (kind of like a laser pointer) that the Roomba won’t cross.

Like anything else though, there are upkeep costs and it is up to you to decide whether they are worth it or not. The batteries are NiMH (nickel-metal hydride) and will probably last six months to a year depending on
how often you run the machine. At about $70 to replace; to me it’s worth it. I like the carpets vacuumed and if I don’t have to do it, well, all the better. The brushes (especially the soft one) will also have to be replaced every six months or so in order to keep the machine working its best.

So, all in all I liked the Roomba. On a coolness scale I give it 5 out of 5 stars. On how well it picks the dirt up from the carpet I give it 2 ½ stars. If I can get away with taking out the regular vacuum every three to four weeks instead of every week, then the Roomba is for me!!

Golden Gate Carpet Cleaning

643 Martin Ave. #3Rohnert Park, Ca. 94928 – 707-588-8879