These are the 15 best robot vacuums

It almost sounds too good to be true: a robot that takes care of one of the most repetitive tasks in the house, vacuuming. But with the right knowledge in advance, the right robot for your situation plus a touch of nuance, this new development does bring a new level of comfort. We compared the fifteen best robot vacuum cleaners between 109 and 999 euros.

To avoid disappointment, it is crucial that it is clear what a robot vacuum cleaner can and cannot do. What they are by no means – not even the models towards the thousand euros – are complete replacements for the fixed vacuum cleaner in the house. A robot vacuum cleaner is an additional household product, which can (strongly) decrease the frequency with which you have to vacuum yourself. What also applies to every model, regardless of the price, is that the devices only really do their job well if you do clean up yourself. If you leave cables, socks, Lego or other small clutter everywhere, don't expect the robot to clean it up for you... it's more likely to get stuck on it.

What can he do?

Dirt Devil and Zoef, among others, prove that robot vacuum cleaners can be accessible in terms of price. Not all manufacturers have models in the low price ranges: you don't have to knock on the door of brands such as iRobot, Neato or Samsung for less than a few hundred euros. As you consider a more luxurious model, you often get a (much) more powerful vacuum cleaner, more or more luxurious options and often a better quality of, among other things, the sensors for navigation.

A simple robot follows its own patterns and when you let it loose in a large space, you run the risk of not reaching every square inch. A luxury robot is able to read the layout of the room and navigate wisely. The smarter models also recognize the room next time, and can then do their work much more smoothly.

Keep in mind that not all robots (mostly cheaper ones) are made to work on carpets, which also translates to lower performance if you have a lot of carpets around the house. Not surprising since a rug requires much more force for a good cleaning.

Cleaning

Each robot is assessed on a number of elements which we can divide into three main elements: quality cleaning, quality navigation, features. Cleaning is measured on a hard floor and carpet, with each vacuum cleaner having to clean up a fixed amount of cornflakes, rice, and flour (large, heavy and very light 'dirt', respectively). The amount of tidy material is combined with a subjective score… leaving a little bit weighs less than a robot spreading the flower all over the rug. While not all robots are made for carpeting, they are still tested to assess performance on carpets in homes with hard floors. The performance in corners and along edges is also assessed, we look at the noise production, and – useful for a top result – we see whether a robot detects where there is more dirt and then does extra cleaning.

Navigation

In terms of navigation, we assess how smart the robot is at navigating through space and whether it skips any spots. Pros for vacuum cleaners that neatly ride around the edges, negatives for models that simply by bumping into everything realize that something is in the way. We also check whether they drive over a sturdy cable and whether they are able to drive over a 10 mm plinth or whether they get stuck there. We also register whether the robot does not get stuck, for example under an office chair or in a bundle of cables. And whether he can fall down the stairs, and what is the minimum height of spaces under which the robot can reach.

Features

In terms of possibilities, we look at any handy built-in or included extras. For example, a charging station and automatic charging function, whether you can program schedules and whether you can run it remotely via your phone while you're on the way home. Remote controls, extra brushes and extra filters also earn points. Some robots come with a small lighthouse (or in the case of the Neato D5 a magnetic stripe) to demarcate an area so that the vacuum cleaner doesn't go there. You have to weigh the added value of this yourself.

mopping robots

The ability to immediately mop your home during or after vacuuming sounds like one of the most attractive, time-saving options a robot vacuum can have. However, most more luxurious models do not have this option, which led us to suspect that the mopping could be a clean appearance. And in practical experience, we also had to make the necessary comments about the concept. Even more than for a vacuum cleaner feature, you have to pay very close attention to where the robot can and cannot go. After a few days with a partly mopped carpet, moderately mopped floors, or damp dust somewhere in the path of the robot, we came to the conclusion that it might be a nice extra, but especially if you are present yourself to keep an eye on things. to keep the sail. Our tip: rather invest in a good vacuum cleaner and keep mopping in your own hands, or consider a full-fledged mopping robot.

Dirt Devil Spider 2.0 M612 and Fusion M611

For Dirt Devil, vacuum cleaners are the core business, it only makes robot vacuum cleaners for the entry-level segment. The two tested models were well received in their price range.

At 133 euros, the Fusion M611 is one of the cheapest models with a charging station and automatic return function. With its height of 5.5 cm, it is the lowest vacuum cleaner in the test, which is nice if you have a lot of low cabinets that you want to get under. It is made for hard floors and does a decent job there, as long as it doesn't have to suck up too big chunks: it simply pushes large cornflakes around the room. The navigation is fairly simple but functional enough for not too large spaces. For example, it works in a small office with only hard floors.

The Dirt Devil Spider 2.0 M612 knows how to charm us more, especially if you are looking for a really cheap model. With a price of 109 euros, it is the cheapest in the test, and as a vacuum cleaner it outperforms the other budget models. Especially the fact that he also achieves a reasonable performance on (low-pile) carpet and rugs is striking and nice. Don't expect the power to really clean thoroughly, but the nearby competitors do this significantly less well. He's spartan, so don't expect a timetable. You press the button before you leave and at the end of the day you empty the container and put it on the charger.

Dirt Devil Fusion M611

Price

€ 133,-

Website

www.dirtdevil.de 7 Score 70

  • Pros
  • Base station with automatic return
  • Very reasonable performance on hard floors
  • Cheap
  • Negatives
  • Poor performance on rug or carpet

Dirt Devil Spider 2.0 M612

Price

€ 109,-

Website

www.dirtdevil.de 8 Score 80

  • Pros
  • More powerful than direct competition
  • Reasonable performance rug and carpet
  • Cheap
  • Negatives
  • No base station or schedule

Zoef Sien and Miep

Zoef stands out because of its name. The manufacturer emphasizes its Dutch roots with names. What foreign alternatives can hardly match is the fact that all possible accessories and replacement parts are available directly from the Netherlands. This is no superfluous luxury for a motorized product: filters and brushes inevitably wear out. The presence of HEPA filters for allergy sufferers is also an added value, not every manufacturer is clear about this.

With 139 euros, the Zoef Miep is the entry-level, but unfortunately it disappoints. Like the Spider 2.0, this is a spartan model without a base station, but unfortunately Miep underperforms in every element of the test. That makes the extra cost difficult to explain.

The 249 euro Sien does good business. This combines a good (at this price point) performance as a vacuum cleaner on hard floors and very reasonable performance on carpets, with neat extras including an included virtual wall, extra accessories, remote control, base station with automatic return and a reasonable navigation pattern. Sien is not cheap, but better robots are a lot more expensive or require the step to manual import from China. The Zoef Sien turned out to be a nice middle ground between the Spartan and very luxurious options.

Zoef Emma

Although not tested, we think the Zoef Emma is worth mentioning, internally similar to the Sien, but excluding the virtual wall and the mop function, which do not make us very warm. A possible interesting alternative for 179 euros.

Zoef Miep

Price

€ 139,-

Website

www.zoefrobot.nl 4 Score 40

  • Pros
  • low height
  • Excellent performance on hard floors
  • Negatives
  • Does not work well on soft floors
  • There are better models for less money

Zoef Sien

Price

€ 249,-

Website

www.zoefrobot.nl 8 Score 80

  • Pros
  • Neat price-performance ratio
  • Extras
  • Mopping function (provided you stay close)
  • Negatives
  • The better Chinese (Xiaomi) a class better
  • Navigation pattern basic

Severin Chill RB7025

Severin also participates in the affordable segment. And whoever puts the Severin Chill and the Dirt Devil Spider 2.0 next to each other can prepare for a solid game of 'spot the differences'. Both brands share the same factory behind this Spartan base station-free model, and it shows. Yet both companies make different choices. For example, we appreciate Severin's choice to go for a slightly more robust Li-Ion battery over the NiMH variant in the Dirt Devil. We could have accepted the approximately 15 euro higher street price, were it not for the fact that Severin uses brushes with considerably less hair. This results in a noticeably less cleaning result. Not bad, but we see better for less money.

Severin Chill RB7025

Price

€ 124,-

Website

www.severin.com 6 Score 60

  • Pros
  • No base station or schedule
  • Li-Ion battery
  • Negatives
  • Less cleaning results

iRobot Roomba 980, 866 and 680

iRobot is the brand in the robot vacuum cleaner market. The company is experienced in making more luxurious robot vacuum cleaners and you will notice this immediately in practice. Especially in terms of navigating through your house and reaching every piece of surface, the Roomba models score excellently compared to competing models. iRobot doesn't always focus on most perks, but as a vacuum cleaner, each of the models does a good job. We do, however, question the base station. Although you have to secure it, the simple plastic construction detracts from the overall impression of the quality.

iRobot's top model, the 999 euro Roomba 980, is a statement to show what the company can do, and in practice it is also a phenomenal machine: in general as a vacuum cleaner, with the app, but especially in details such as the triple vacuuming areas where a lot of dirt is detected, and the increasing suction power when the robot sees that it is driving on carpet. Thanks to the built-in camera, among other things, the navigation is of the highest level, even if you have a spacious surface. This makes it (albeit narrowly) the best vacuum cleaner in the test.

Getting excited about an extremely expensive top model is of course easy, but it is the half as expensive Roomba 866 that will be the most interesting buy for many. On a feature level, this Roomba is fairly stripped down. You do not get app functionality, virtual walls or other extras. Most competitors between 400 and 600 euros have more extras, but they know how to stay ahead of this Roomba 886 in terms of performance. It is also accessible for the not too technical user.

In the eyes of iRobot, the Roomba 680 is an entry-level model. However, where the 860 was not much inferior to the 980 in terms of suction performance, the 680 is clearly a lot less. The way of navigating remains very good. Pretty good for its price range, but not great, especially if we compare it with the performance of, for example, the Xiaomi. If you are already considering a more luxurious robot vacuum cleaner – 350 euros is still a lot of money – we would be inclined to make the step to the 800 series.

iRobot Roomba 980

Price

€ 999,-

Website

www.irobot.com 10 Score 100

  • Pros
  • Top performance on hard and soft floors
  • Excellent navigation
  • Excellent extras
  • Negatives
  • Exorbitant price tag
  • Charging station scanty

iRobot Roomba 866

Price

€ 499,-

Website

www.irobot.com 9 Score 90

  • Pros
  • Excellent suction performance on hard and soft floors
  • Excellent navigation
  • User friendly
  • Negatives
  • Sturdy price tag
  • No generous extras

iRobot Roomba 680

Price

€ 349,-

Website

www.irobot.com 7 Score 70

  • Pros
  • Very reasonable performance
  • Good navigation
  • User friendly
  • Negatives
  • Price-performance ratio not great

Samsung VR9300

When you take the Samsung VR9300 out of the box, you know that Samsung has seriously opened the attack on the title 'best robot vacuum cleaner'. With its 13.5 cm height, extreme look and huge wheels, it is by far the most impressive to see when driving through your house. He rips like no other over skirting boards, thicker rugs or other random objects. And as the decibel meter also suggests, the suction power is impressive: the Samsung knows better than anyone else how to get the flower out of the carpet and comes closest to the real vacuum cleaner.

It is also a beautiful device in terms of possibilities. It maps your rooms, you can send it to specific areas to clean, and it navigates around your furniture with precision. The VR9300 recognizes hotspots (areas with a lot of dirt) and repeats its movements there. However, the overall navigation over a larger floor is just not up to the level of iRobot. And despite the Samsung's slightly better performance on carpet, the Roomba 980 remains narrowly unbeaten on hard floors. The extra height of the VR9300 does cause problems to get under cabinets and benches. This makes it slightly less handy than the most expensive iRobot. However, if those negatives aren't relevant to your situation, this is a very strong and attractive contender in the money-nothing segment.

Samsung VR9300

Price

€ 899,-

Website

www.samsung.nl 9 Score 90

  • Pros
  • Top performance on hard and soft floors
  • Cleaning specific rooms
  • Negatives
  • Extreme price tag
  • Way higher than the competition
  • Relatively noisy

LG Homobot VR9647PS and VR9624PR

LG focuses on the concept of 'smart robot' with its Hombot Turbo+ models. A sea of ​​possibilities has been added to the models, for which extreme access rights on your phone are required. The VR9647PS is equipped with a camera so you can keep an eye on your home. You can also receive notifications when movements are detected. The VR9624PR doesn't have that option and also lacks the mop mode of the VR9647PS, but it still has plenty of options, with Wi-Fi, app control and a physical remote control. The LGs 'talk' to you when they are going to do something or in case of problems. With HEPA filters, a 10-year warranty on the motor, quiet operation and reasonably good navigation, the LGs seemed to be on their way to a good result in terms of specs.

Unfortunately, the two LG models as a vacuum cleaner did not really convince. On carpet they both managed to achieve a good result, strikingly enough, the cheaper VR9624PR turned out to be even better. But both models left the hard floors well in flour, while we also had to clear the measured rice along the baseboards and under the seats. The LG's many sensors are not used to tame the violently spinning brushes in front, which seems to be the main cause of the end result. We can appreciate nice features, but a robot vacuum cleaner stands or falls like ... yes, vacuum cleaner. And in that respect, these two models are just a bit short. Keep an eye on LG though, as minor tweaks could turn these products into serious contenders.

LGVR9647PS

Price

€ 772,-

Website

www.lg.com/nl 6 Score 60

  • Pros
  • Good performance soft floors
  • Very extensive options
  • Negatives
  • Hard floors performance below par

LG VR9624PR

Price

€ 549,-

Website

www.lg.com/nl 7 Score 70

  • Pros
  • Very good performance on rug and carpet
  • Extensive options
  • Negatives
  • Hard floor performance disappointing

Neato Botvac D3 Connected and D5 Connected

Like LG, Neato focuses on making smart robot vacuum cleaners. And here too we see two machines with the necessary similarities. They differ mainly in some details: the D5 has an extra brush for edges, a much larger battery for more range and comes with a few extra modes that make the price increase reasonable for all homes with larger areas. Crucially, as vacuum cleaners, the Neatos also do good business. Although they have more trouble with slightly larger dirt (in this case cornflakes) than the other models in the higher segment, the overall performance on hard and soft floors is excellent.

The auto-navigation isn't the best, but good enough to keep up with larger spaces. With a smooth, clear app and some handy tricks such as integration with Amazon Alexa, Google Home, IFTTT and therefore the Athom Homey, it is a device that is attractive for the tech-savvy user. On the other hand, smart isn't always better, because when the D5 wouldn't pair with one of the test phones, the device refused completely… making it less suitable for the tech layman.

We would also like to comment on the short warranty period of only one year, and the extremely short cable of the charging station: we expect better at this price point.

Neato Botvac D5 Connected

Price

€ 579,-

Website

www.neatorobotics.com 8 Score 80

  • Pros
  • Very good all-round vacuum cleaner
  • Good app integration
  • Very large battery
  • Negatives
  • Less for the tech layman
  • Warranty period 1 year
  • Very short cable charging station

Neato Botvac D3 Connected

Price

€ 429,-

Website

www.neatorobotics.com 7 Score 70

  • Pros
  • Good all-round vacuum cleaner
  • Good app integration
  • Negatives
  • Price-performance ratio not great
  • Less for the tech layman
  • Warranty period 1 year
  • Very short cable charging station

Xiaomi Mi Vacuum

Online shopping in China can put you on the front line for a dime or give you a headache. In the case of the Xiaomi Mi Vacuum (from approx.249 euros), the former is the case. It is an excellent vacuum cleaner for the money, it is solid, attractively designed and, as we expect from Chinese, it is also equipped with the necessary tidbits. In fact, thanks to the excellent app experience, equally excellent navigation and very good cleaning performance, we see the Xiaomi Mi Vacuum as one of the most attractive models in the test.

As good as the Roomba 980 is… for a fraction of the price, the Xiaomi hardly beats it. It also exceeds the Roomba 866 in possibilities and it is even more affordable. It's also a better vacuum cleaner than the extended LGs.

There are some snags to buy the Xiaomi, because you have to buy it through a Chinese web store such as GearBest or AliExpress. Prices fluctuate and there is a chance that you will have to pay VAT and import duties on top of the advertised price, although some Chinese shops offer the possibility to have products shipped from the EU (at an additional cost). And the really big question will be what happens if it is defective and you want to claim your warranty… chances are you will be blunt or stuck with high shipping costs. If you dare to take a gamble, the Xiaomi Mi Vacuum is a logical choice.

Xiaomi Mi Vacuum

Price

Approx. € 249,-

Website

www.tiny.cc/xiali (translated site) 9 Score 90

  • Pros
  • Top price-performance ratio
  • Very good vacuum cleaner
  • Very good extras
  • Negatives
  • Possible warranty or import problems

Conclusion

The old saying 'cheap is expensive' applies to a certain extent: deploying a budget model in a large floor and expecting a top performance from it, is asking for dissatisfaction. But for a small space with hard floors, you can certainly get all the necessary functionality with a small investment. Then choose the Dirt Devil Spider 2.0 M612, which you do have to hang from the charger yourself every now and then.

We only get really charmed from around 250 euros. The robot vacuum cleaners in this price range can really take work off your hands, but they do have their own advantages and disadvantages. The deserved editorial tip for price-performance ratio goes to the Xiaomi Mi Vacuum. Chinese imports are often nice and cheap, but in this case it simply turned out to be one of the most capable and smart vacuum cleaners on the market. The competition that is twice as expensive has a tough job to do.

If you prefer to stay within the national borders when purchasing, then the Zoef Sien is a nice model, provided the space is not too large or complex. And otherwise it really pays to look at the more luxurious models towards the 500 euros. We find Roomba's 800 series to be the best in performance there. With an honorable mention for the slightly more expensive Neato D5 if you want a smart model with a longer breath.

Although we had some doubts beforehand about the hefty price tags of the real top models - think of the 899 euro Samsung VR9300 or the 999 euro iRobot Roomba 980 - it turned out that these models offer convincing added value above the entire middle segment. For many, such an (almost) ultimate robot vacuum cleaner will remain out of reach for a while, but the performance does not lie.

All test results can be found in the table below.

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