Three months ago we bought the Roomba 980 for our home. We were really skeptical about buying one… I’m not going to lie. We first heard of the Roomba on the show “Flipping Out. Jeff Lewis, the star of the show and famous decorator, has multiple pets and also is a tad bit OCD about the cleanliness of his house. In fact, he not only has a housekeeper but the Roomba as well. He seemed to really like the Roomba and that was enough to peak our curiosity. However, purchasing a Roomba was not an easy decision for several reasons.
(This post is in no way sponsored by Roomba we Purchased it on our own with our own Funds. The links in this post are affiliate links.)
We started researching the Roomba and all the different models and were pleasantly surprised to see how many raving reviews this little robot received. The reviews made an even more convincing case for this top of the line vacuum robot. But still buying a Roomba was not an easy decision for us and here’s why.
Concerns about the Roomba 980
- The Price– Obviously this thing is not cheap. In fact, it’s downright expensive.
- The Pets- We have a very anxious dog and a scaredy cat. We were concerned that two pets who were already scared of a normal vacuum would freak out over a free range robot vacuum.
- The Pet Hair- Although we only have two pets we were still worried that the pet hair would fill up the Roomba’s canister too quickly and the Roomba would be more work than it’s actually worth.
- The Battery Life- We were really worried that the Roomba would have to be re-charged constantly due to short battery life and therefore not really be running and doing its job enough.
- The Suction Power- We have owned Dyson Vacuums for years. In fact, we still have two that we use occasionally. Dysons are known for excellent suction power and we thought without a doubt the Roomba would never live up to the power of a Dyson.
- Too Good to Be True- The reviews are overwhelmingly positive for this little robot, which always makes me a little skeptical. After all, could a little vacuum robot really be that incredible?
With all of these concerns, we still decided to take the risk and purchase the Roomba 980. We had multiple discussions about why this expensive little robot could improve our lives if it really did work and here’s what we came up with…
How the Roomba Could Improve Our Life
- Time- every weekend my husband would spend at least 3 hours vacuuming the house. He would vacuum the baseboards, under furniture (the best he could) and all the floors in the house. With a job that requires nearly 65 hours a week, his time is super limited and 3 hours a week added back to his time is priceless. (Honestly this alone, had us sold).
- Allergies- we all suffer from allergies and need the pet hair and dust to be cleaned more than once a week. Our hopes were that the Roomba would help cut back on pet hair and dust more than once a week vacuuming.
- Stress- I’m just going to be honest.. dirty floors STRESS me out. I worked in childcare for 20 years and it’s been engrained in my head that floors and surfaces must be as clean as possible at all times. You can imagine that seeing dust, pet hair, and debris on the floor sets off a stress trigger for me. Having clean floors is a must for my personal sanity. And as the saying goes “If Momma ain’t’ Happy, Nobody’s Happy.”
The Honest Truth About the Roomba 980
Needless to say, we obviously outweighed the concerns with the possible positive effects and purchased the Roomba 980. We have been happily using the Roomba 980 for three months now and are extremely pleased with our purchase. A lot of our fears were subsided after just the first few uses. However, the Roomba 980 is not an entirely perfect machine.. close but not perfect.
Cons of Roomba 980
- It Gets Stuck- The Roomba gets stuck. Although the Roomba does not get stuck under a lot of furniture, it does get stuck under some pieces. We have two chairs that it frequently tries to go under and gets stuck. The Roomba will announce when it gets stuck and will shut down. When this happens I have to stop what I’m doing and pull it out and restart it. With that being said, the Roomba 960 comes with two sensors that you can place in areas to avoid. I’ll admit I haven’t quite figured out how to use those. I also feel like I could figure out a creative solution for this issue but I haven’t yet. Not a huge con but it can be annoying.
- It’s Not Quiet- The Roomba is not a silent vacuum. I think we expected it to be really quiet. The truth is it’s not as loud as your typical vacuum but it is not quiet either. I personally can’t sleep if it’s running at night. But then again I’m a light sleeper.
- It Doesn’t Clean Everything- The Roomba does not clean baseboards or the quarter round molding. The Roomba cleans all types of floors and the brushes do a great job kicking dirt out from corners and the bottom of the baseboards but it simply does not clean the molding around the baseboards. Since we still have our Dyson upright vacuum, we use it to get in tight spaces like behind toilets and around baseboards.
- Maintenance Parts- There are maintenance parts that are needed to keep the Roomba running efficiently. Like with any machine, the more you use the Roomba the faster you will have to replace its parts. You can easily order these parts on Amazon here. (Just to put it in perspective, we use our Roomba every day and haven’t had to replace parts yet 3 months later,)
- You Have to Pick Up First- Remember Rosie the Robot Maid from The Jetsons? Wouldn’t it be great to have her around? The Roomba cleans very well but its NO Rosie. You do have to pick up toys and other small objects before Roomba starts running. Roomba did great around Christmas tree skirts during the Holidays, however, he did pull an extension cord near my desk and swiped a glass jar to the floor. Just keep in mind if you have a lot of clutter or cords, Roomba may not be a great fit for your house.
Pros of Roomba 980
- The App- The Roomba 980 comes with wifi and an app you install on your phone. You can literally control your Roomba from your phone. You can tell it to start vacuuming, you can pause it, or you can send it back to its home base. You can set a cleaning schedule with the app. I have my Roomba programmed to start vacuuming once the last kid is dropped off at school.
- The Suction Power- The suction power is amazing! No need to worry, this little robot really does have awesome suction power and it cleans just like a normal vacuum.
- It Cleans Under Most Furniture- The Roomba cleans under most furniture if there is enough clearance. We were ecstatic when we discovered it cleaned under our bed. Which in the past we’d have to lie down on the floor with the upright extension tube and vacuum the best we could.
- Pets and Pet Hair No Problem- The Roomba cleans up pet hair with no issue and we are happy to say our pets pay no attention to the Roomba. I think it’s because it’s very low to the ground and small so it is not intimidating to them like an upright.
- The Battery Life– There are different models of the Roomba the 980 is the highest model and therefore has the best battery life. The Roomba 980 runs for about 1.5 to 2 hours before it has to dock and recharge itself. When the battery is running low, it returns itself to the charging port and recharges. If it has finished it’s job it will remain there until the next scheduled cleaning time. If it did not finish its job it will recharge and then start back up again.
- Our Allergies are Better- Raycop We try really hard to keep our home environment as free of dust and pet hair as possible. We use technology like the on our furniture and the Roomba for the floors. We also love using Norwex Cloths to clean hard surfaces. Using a combination of these different cleaning tools has greatly improved our health and our allergy symptoms.
- Less Stress and More Time- With the Roomba, our floors are nearly spotless all of the time now, which makes me so happy. With Roomba doing all the work, we are less stressed and have more time to do other things!
Phew, I know this was a lot of information. But because this is a big investment with a lot of “hype” surrounding it, I really wanted to give you the most accurate information I could about the Roomba. Ultimately, for our family, the Roomba has really improved our life enough that it totally justifies the cost. In fact, we are considering getting a second one for the upstairs of our house. If you are on the fence about buying a Roomba I can tell you without a doubt this little Robot is one that I wouldn’t part with!
Just look at how much hair and debris …. and um… crayons? … it picked up during one scheduled cleaning. It’s pretty AMAZING!
In fact, we are considering getting a second one for the upstairs of our house. If you are on the fence about buying a Roomba I can tell you without a doubt this little Robot is one that I wouldn’t part with!
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Tiffany Jones says
We have had 2 different models in our house for over 2 years now. I love them. The one in the kitchen ALWAYS gets stuck under the island cabinets. ALWAYS. There is a way around it – add a bumper to the front of your roomba so it cannot go under frequently stuck items (ie your chair). Another quick fix on the chair is add felt bumper pads underneath to give it just that extra 1/4″ it might need to do the job without getting stuck 🙂
The one in the living room always gets behind the recliner and gets stuck. We tend to have to go looking for it on occasions. Overall, I love being able to set that schedule and know it is vacuuming my house every morning while I am away. I do suggest getting a spare set of brushes so you can quickly change them out instead of slowing the cleaning process 🙂 It has saved me on multiple occasions until I realized I forgot to put rollers back in! 2 days later I am scratching my head! Great post! iRobots rock!
Lesley @Chaotically Creative says
Great Idea! Every time it gets stuck I remind myself I have to come up with a solution. We just ordered replacement brushes and other parts a few days ago just in case we need to replace them. I don’t know if I could live without my Roomba! So glad others feel the same way!
Hi! I also I’m in love with my roomba and no problem with dog hair. I ‘ve used it over 7 months now everyday and no replacement needed.
If you put a sensor on the floor and press the up bottom it won’t clean from there on in a straight line,and if you put one near the chair and put the other button it won’t clean in 1m2 (europe measurement). I hope you try this out and helps you.
Lesley @Chaotically Creative says
Thank you so much! What great tips! I will definitely try to play with the sensors so that it prevents it from getting stuck! So glad you love your Roomba too! Lesley