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Roomba may have invented the modern robot vacuum, but startups have sprung up in the past few years to challenge their supremacy with comparable options that cost under $160.
Robot vacuums work by rolling around your floor, sucking up dirt and dust particles; they’re generally small enough to fit under small spaces like your couch or bed too, letting them reach nooks and crannies upright vacuums can’t. Motion and depth sensors keep the vacuum from going over the same area over and over again, bumping into walls, or falling down stairs.
Once they’re done, modern robot vacuums will return to their charging station, where you can flip them over, remove their waste container, and empty it into the trash. You can even set a robot vacuum to work on a schedule using an app or smart-home speaker like the Amazon Echo, so it cleans when you’re not around to hear it.
If you’ve been on the fence about getting a robot vacuum because of price, you should strongly consider either of the choices below. Amazon has both on sale right now for under $160 — the cheapest price we’ve seen all year.
1. Ecovacs’ DEEBOT 500 Robot Vacuum
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Ecovacs’ DEEBOT 500 has all the features you’ll need in a robot vacuum cleaner. It has three brushes, which move dust and dirt particles into the vacuum’s mouth, and a 520ML dust bin to hold all of it. You can set the vacuum to clean an entire room with the auto mode, or switch to a “spot” mode, which will engage its sensors to focus on a specific area.
DEEBOT says this vacuum works well on tile, carpets, and rugs. If it senses a very dirty area, the vacuum may automatically kick into its “Max” mode, which uses more power, but doubles its suction power.
You can control the DEEBOT 500 through an app on your phone (iOS or Android), which lets you set a cleaning schedule, and switch between different cleaning modes. You can also start or end a cleaning session using your voice by connecting this robot vacuum to an Amazon Echo or Google Home.
This robot vacuum can work for one hour and 50 minutes on a single charge, and recharges on an included inductive charging dock. Because of its navigation sensors, the vacuum will automatically find its way back to the charger when it’s out of batteries, or the cleaning session is over. If you’re looking for an all-around great robot vacuum, you can’t go wrong here.
Buy:Ecovacs DEEBOT 500$158.99Buy it
2. eufy RoboVac robot vacuum
I’ve personally tested several of eufy’s RoboVac robot vacuum cleaners over the past few years, and they’ve never failed to impress. The 11S is a slim robot vacuum designed to clean annoying, hard-to-reach places like the space under a radiator.
For reference, DEEBOT’s 500 is 3.1 inches tall, and the eufy RoboVac 11S is 2.85 inches tall — this may not sound like a lot, but it can be the difference between cleaning the underside of your bed, and getting wedged under one of its support beams (I speak from experience).
The vacuum catches dirt with two brushes, which feed it into the vacuum and into a 600ML dust box. Eufy says the RoboVac 11S can work on tile, low-to-medium pile carpets, hardwood, and laminated floors. In my testing it’s worked well on all of the above. The vacuum supports a custom technology called BoostIQ, which allows it to adjust the intensity of its suction based on how much dirt it senses,
One of the best features of the RoboVac 11S is its ability to climb up thresholds up to 0.63 inches tall. That’s enough to climb over the floor molding in many houses, allowing the vacuum to clean multiple rooms in a single session. The RoboVac 11S can be controlled via a remote, app (iOS or Android), and Amazon Echo — each method allows you to set the vacuum on a schedule, or switch between modes.
This RoboVac can clean for up to 100 minutes on a single charge, and will automatically return to its charging base when it’s running low on power. To help extend the life of the RoboVac 11, eufy includes an extra set of dust filters and side brushes, which you can swap out without any tools.
Eufy’s RoboVac 11S costs $219.99 usually; it’s now only $149.99 for Amazon Prime members. A subscription to the service is traditionally touted for its free two-day delivery on millions of items, but it’s got a lot more to offer. If you’re not a Prime member, but want to get the eufy RoboVac 11S at its discounted price, you can sign up for a 30-day free trial to try it for yourself.
Buy:eufy RoboVac 11S$149.99Buy it
3. iRobot Roomba i7
If you prefer to stick to the iRobot Roomba, Amazon has the best-selling robot vacuum for $200 off right now. Regularly $699.99, it’s now priced at $469.
This i7 model is the high-end choice with powerful vacuuming capabilities, advanced navigation and comprehensive smart connectivity. Powerful suction means it’ll pick up whatever you (or your pets) leave on the carpet, tiles and hardwood floors.
The Roomba is controlled with the intuitive iRobot app as well as home assistants like Alexa and Google Home. From the app, you can tell the Roomba to start and set up cleaning schedules that start automatically while you’re away or asleep.
Buy:iRobot Roomba i7$469.99Buy it
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