Which Roomba model?

localeaterOctober 22, 2012

As part of our kitchen project I am considering getting a roomba. I have read on this forum that some of you have them. My first floor will be all hardwood and a little tile, with a couple of low pile area rugs. I have two dogs.

I need a model that will pick up dust and dog hair. Do you have one that you like or loathe in a similar situation?

If I decide to go with the roomba, I would like to include a place for its docking station in the toe kick of my island. Any thoughts on that idea?

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We have the Roomba 780 and I really, really, like and depend on it. I call it 'The Help' :)

Docking station is tucked under a buffet which works well for us. I find it's important to make sure it's on the charger - not sure if you could see the light that turns on when it's on the charger otherwise. Sometimes (usually?) it plays a victory tune when it goes back to the docking station by itself but sometimes you'll be putting it back on. Toekick space sounds cool but will you have stools in front for it to navigate past (it's pretty good at this by the way). Will you be ok with climbing down and laying on the floor to check on it? You could use the remote and tell it to dock but sometimes that seems to take a long time.

I'm not sure if you've had one of these before but following is what I've found. You want to keep this battery charged, don't let it wear out. There is definitely work involved. We have a long haired 110 pound German Shepherd who tracks in copious amounts of dirt and sheds constantly. Daily, you need to clean out the collection bin, pull out the track ball, remove hair from here; clean the brushes and also the little spinning thing. If you see dust bunnies, get in the habit of manually picking them up vs. expecting the roomba to. This sounds like a lot of work; maybe it's 3-4 minutes a day. In return, the floors are swept daily and dust and hair are removed from under sofas, chairs and beds. It goes from carpet to wooden floor very easily, even goes up on sills (but not over).You do need to make sure things that it can get caught on are out of its way (cords esp.). You don't want to wear out the motor.

One last comment -- it is constantly opening the trash (we have hafele foot pedals). If your dogs are out during the day, this might be something to consider :)

    Bookmark   October 22, 2012 at 11:10AM
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I would highly recommend buying whatever Hammacher Schlemmer is selling because of their lifetime warranty- I am on my 3rd roomba in 6 years- It's completely hasslefree and they replace the roomba if they verify the issue. Count the extra expense as the extended warranty.

    Bookmark   October 22, 2012 at 2:56PM
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I have whatever one Costco was selling at the time I bought it. Aside from having to clean out the collection bin when running (3 small dogs here); DH just uses the blower thing on his compressor to blow out the interior. We've had ours over a year and no problems. Costco is famous for taking stuff back without question

    Bookmark   October 22, 2012 at 4:55PM
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Localeater- thank you for posting this. I was just researching the 770 last night. Lots of good review information on Amazon.

    Bookmark   October 22, 2012 at 5:07PM
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I'll second everything old bat said. With 4 dogs and 3 cats, our Roomba "Alice" is a lifesaver. Bought the one Costco sells and exchanged 2 of them before one lasted over a year. I'm sure Costco would have exchanged that one too, but I got 18 months out of the part that broke so I just bought the part myself. My only complaint with the unit is that the part that holds the brushes is made of plastic and the plastic loses its shape over time. Still, I love my Roomba!

    Bookmark   October 23, 2012 at 12:25AM
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Wow. Thanks for all the great feedback. It definitely sounds like Roomba is the way to go.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2012 at 8:12AM
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which one did you end up getting? I'm trying to decide if the 770 is worth the extra cost? I'm not seeing it less than 499.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2013 at 11:17AM
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I haven't been able to justify the cost to myself yet. Sorry. I may ask for it as a gift!

    Bookmark   March 17, 2013 at 12:24PM
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$500 seems like a lot, certainly! We just got new hardwood floors and I really want to get one. Was hoping I could get by with an older cheaper model.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2013 at 4:09PM
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My friend brought over her Neato and I loved it. That thing did a beautiful job. The only complaint is the wool rugs are still shedding and it filled up the dirt trap in no time. It had no problem going from short pile to hardwood to a deeper pile carpet.

Like localeater, I am trying to justify the cost. I don't mind vacuuming, it is more a time issue for me. DH does help with the house, but it would be nice to come home every evening and know the floors will be swept. DH also tells me to get someone to help with the house cleaning. Maybe that is my justification! Rather than someone to help clean, I will get a robotic sweeper! It certainly would be less expensive in the long run.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2013 at 4:10PM
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