I Got Given An iRobot Vacuum And It Blew My Mind

Happy Mum Happy Child Robot Vacuum

I can be honest with you guys, right?! I used to vacuum twice a day (when the kids were younger), and now I might vacuum every week (or every two weeks): I’m pretty slack.

Now when I say I don’t “vacuum”, I mean I don’t lug out the big vacuum cleaner that often. We have a dust-buster which does an average job, and I do this a few times a week.

The big cleans don’t happen as frequently as they used to – mainly because I’m lazy; and it’s much easier just grabbing the dust-buster when it gets visibly bad.

When I was offered the opportunity to have an iRobot 980 (and give one away – more details coming about that soon), I was excited but apprehensive.

I figured it’d be a “surface clean automatic vacuum” – boy was I wrong.

Here’s a quick video from YouTube to show you it in a much more professional setting than mine:


Setting up the iRobot Roomba was relatively easy (and I was worried I’d have to get my husband to help but it wasn’t hard at all), and after about an hour of charging, I sent it on it’s first run.

The particular model I have (the iRobot 980) connects wirelessly to an app on my phone. So I can push the power button on the unit, or start it using the app – I’m an app girl, so I fired it up using my phone.

It comes with 2 extra sensors that you can set up in places you don’t want the iRobot to go, but we didn’t use these because the whole house is fair game haha

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It goes in an up-down pattern, using buffers and sensors to detect when it’s close to something and then it’ll move out of the way.

I originally thought that it just did a “surface clean” but I was so so wrong. It picks up a decent amount – which you will see when you have to empty the vacuum bin. See it in action here:

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After 20 minutes I had to empty the vacuum bin – not only because it’s small (because it’s bigger than my dust-buster), but because it was JAM PACKED full of dust and debris.

Some of you were asking “how often do you empty it” – you do have to empty it frequently. Because it’s a smaller unit than a regular vacuum. Our bagged vacuum cleaner gets emptied maybe once a month, but again that’s because it’s bigger and can hold more.

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Is it loud?
It’s no louder than my other two vacuum cleaners (the bigger one and the dust-buster). A few of you thought it sounded loud whilst I was Instagramming, but that’s because I was Instagramming. You wouldn’t normally hear my vacuum because I don’t snapchat whilst vacuuming because I am not that talented haha

Will it suck up LEGO?
Yes it will – just like a regular vacuum. If you leave stuff lying on the floor that can be vacuumed up, it’ll try to get it.

Does it get stuck?
YES it can get stuck in places, but while I’ve had it, it hasn’t been stuck anywhere. If it was to get stuck, it sends you a notification to your phone; and if you can’t find it, you can send a request to the iRobot and it will play a sound for you.

How often does it need charging?
With the particular model we have (iRobot 980), it says it has a runtime of 120 minutes. However that was tested on a hard floor surface. With smoother surfaces like wooden floors or lino, the vacuum strength decreases – which means less power is used. Because our house is pretty much all carpet, our runtime was about 45 minutes. When it runs out of battery, it’ll take itself back to the base and recharge itself. Once it’s finished recharging, it’ll go back to where it finished and keep going – IT’S A GENIUS!

What about hard floors or lino? 
Whilst our house is predominantly carpeted, our kitchen is lino – and the iRobot still does an amazing job. It detects that the floor surface has changed, and reduces it’s suction power accordingly.

Is it the same as a regular vacuum? Will it do a truly deep clean?
In my personal opinion – no. The suction power on it isn’t the same as my regular vacuum – but it is much more convenient. Also, I drag my big vacuum out once a week, maybe once every two weeks – and the iRobot works much more frequently. So whilst it might not do a deep clean, overall the house is cleaner because of the frequent cleans (if that makes sense).

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It’s a vacuum robot, not a vacuum tidier – you still need to leave a clear space on the floor so that the iRobot can do it’s job. It’ll suck up things just like lego the same as a regular vacuum.

When you go to vacuum your own house, you clear the floor of most larger items – the same goes for the iRobot.

One tip is make sure tissues aren’t left lying around – turns out our house is full of tissues under beds and the iRobot discovered them all. AND keep an eye on extension cords, I found the iRobot can sometimes struggle to get over these if they’re too big.

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My husband and I really are enjoying having this, and our house feels so much cleaner for it. Like I said, although it might not do a “deep clean”, it’s cleaning more frequently than we ever would, so the whole house feels clean.

We personally haven’t had an issue with moving clutter out of the way, and if anything it’s given us incentive to keep the floor clear.

Also, it’s not cheap – the model I have (iRobot 980) is NZ RRP $1,599, and the other models start around the $600 mark. Obviously you can get it from places that will have it on sale, and do Hire Purchase, but I understand that it’s still a lot of money.

It also won’t do stairs – so you’ll still have to vacuum there separately. Not an issue for us though because our house is single storey!

Would I recommend it? If you can afford it, then absolutely.

For more information, check out the iRobot New Zealand website, or if you’re international, check out iRobot.com.

Thank you very much iRobot New Zealand for gifting me the iRobot 980 – we truly love it and are very grateful for the opportunity to review, and give one away.

I Got Given An iRobot Vacuum And It Blew My Mind
The iRobot Vacuum Review

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