We earn a commission for products purchased through some links in this article.

8 best robot vacuums for keeping your floors fresh

There's more to these mini cleaners than you might think…

best robot vacuums
House Beautiful

Found the perfect flooring but struggling to keep it clean? If your life is hectic, or you simply have better things to do than vacuum, let a robot vacuum cleaner take care of all that daily dust.

Though increasingly advanced, these mini gadgets aren't yet powerful enough to replace your regular vac (sorry). But, they've got light maintenance covered, reducing the time you'll spend on deeper cleans.

Their pick-up can be highly effective, even lifting pet hair, and they're adept at tackling corners and reaching under furniture. They can't climb stairs, but clever sensors save them from taking a tumble.

Our expert tester put a range of tech to the test to find the best robot vacuums for all floor types. Their reviews are below, but these time-saving machines can be pricey, so let's run through the key things to consider before you buy.

How to choose a robot vacuum

Different models offer different features, at different price points. It's only worth paying for those you'll use, so here's what to look for:

Mapping and no-go zones

Many robot vacs map out your floor plan before they clean, so they know where to clean through your home. You can dictate where most clean too, creating no-go zones through the compatible app or by using supplied magnetic strips. Some of the more affordable models on our list don't have these features, but as long as you're around while they're cleaning, this shouldn't be a problem.

Smart connectivity

Every robot vac we've tested has an accompanying app that you can use to control it. They're all compatible with Alexa or Google Home, so you can talk to them if you'd prefer. If you're not fussed about smart features, consider one of the Eufy models – all three in our roundup come with a remote control, too.

Capacity

Compact robot vacs can generally carry less than one litre of dust, meaning they'll need regular emptying. That said, some higher-end gadgets boast auto-emptying functionality, with disposal technology integrated into their docking stations. iRobot claims that its j7+ and s9+ models (both tested by us) can hold up to 60 days' worth of debris.

How we test robot vacuums

Our expert homes tester tried a range of leading robot vacs on hard floors and carpets. They judged each model according to how much specially formulated dust it sucked up in a set number of sweeps. Next, they ground pet hair from Battersea Dogs and Cats Home into carpet to assess heavy duty pick-up.

They put each vac to work in a carefully designed test room, noting how well it navigated obstacles and mapped out dimensions. Lastly, they looked at its tech, considering how intuitive its app felt to use and how effectively it responded to voice control.

These eight robot vacs come stamped with our seal of approval:

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Best robot vacuum
iRobot Roomba Series j7+
irobot.co.uk
£799.99

This Roomba came close to rivalling our stick in pick-up power – everything from crumbs to pet hair vanished in its wake. It responded quickly to voice commands, and our tester liked that it snaps and sends you a photo if it can’t overcome an obstacle.

Its auto-emptying function proved effective, and its app notifies you when the docking station’s bin needs emptying. It took over half an hour to clean our averagely sized test room, but it did so thoroughly.

Choosing between this vac and the top-of-the-range s9+ below was tough – they both performed similarly on test – but the more affordable price tag earned the j7+ our top spot.

Key specifications
Number of cleaning modes: Auto and spot clean
Mapping technology: Yes
Charging time: 3 hours
Running time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Canister capacity: 1.7 litres (docking station storage capacity)

Smartest robot vacuum
iRobot Roomba s9+ (S9558)
irobot.co.uk
£1,299.99

What could justify the extra £500 you’ll pay for the jewel in iRobot’s crown? Well, it comes fitted with advanced tech that helps it develop and learn the most efficient cleaning route around your home.

It can sense when it needs emptying, interrupting its cleaning routine to return to its docking station and auto-dispose of its dust, before resuming its clean. It does the same if its battery is low, returning for a recharge, and its software is compatible with future iRobot updates, keeping it on the cutting edge of cleaning.

It shares a few features with the j7+, too, such as alerting you to any spots it can’t clean via the intuitive app.

Key specifications
Number of cleaning modes: Auto and spot clean
Mapping technology: Yes
Charging time: 3 hours
Running time: 2 hours
Canister capacity: 1.7 litres (docking station storage capacity)

Best robot vacuum for affordability
Eufy By Anker 30C T2118
amazon.co.uk
£159.99

If you’re not ready to drop nearly £800 on our winning Roomba, consider this more affordable yet also impressive Eufy. It can’t map, but it comes with magnetic strips for marking out no-go zones and detected these well during testing.

Most importantly, it was a pro cleaner – it sucked up crumbs and pet hair with aplomb and left all crevices pristine. Its circular design meant it struggled to reach into corners, but it scored points for user accessibility; as well as an app and voice control, it also comes with a remote.

Key specifications
Number of cleaning modes: Auto, spot, edge and quick clean
Mapping technology: Yes – boundary strips
Charging time: 5 to 6 hours
Running time: 100 minutes
Canister capacity: 0.6 litres

Fastest robot vacuum
Eufy by Anker X8
very.co.uk
£359.99

Cut down your hosting to-do list with this nippy vac; cleaning our test room in just shy of 18 minutes, it can freshen up your home before guests arrive, leaving you to focus on the cooking. It missed a few spots in its haste, but its pick-up was generally powerful, dusting edges and removing most crumbs and pet hair.

The latter tangled a little on the brushes, but our tester liked that it mapped as it cleaned and obeyed our no-go zones. It won’t tell you when it needs emptying, though, so make a note to check it regularly.

Key specifications
Number of cleaning modes: Auto, room, zone and spot clean
Mapping technology: Yes
Charging time: 4 to 5 hours
Running time: 180 minutes
Canister capacity: 0.6 litres

Best for in-between cleans
Medion MD18871 Robot Vacuum
currys.co.uk
£299.00

A great entry-level robot vac, this gadget is ideal for quickly refreshing your home between deeper cleans. Clear instructions made it a doddle to assemble and our tester was impressed by how clean it left their room; it took half an hour, but dust, crumbs and pet hair were all fully lifted.

Its build quality didn’t quite stand up to that of more premium models – the dust canister flap failed to close properly after use – but it’s a relatively budget-friendly choice.

Key specifications
Number of cleaning modes: Auto
Mapping technology: Yes
Charging time: 3 hours
Running time: 120 minutes
Canister capacity: 0.6 litres

Best for carpet
Eufy by Anker 15C Max
amazon.co.uk
£249.99

If you’re looking to give your plush new carpets the robot vac treatment, note that this Eufy devoured most of our dirt on test, including pet hair. Its brushes proved too powerful for hard floors, blowing dust around instead of drawing it into the canister, so look to the below Neato if that’s your main style of flooring.

It cleaned our test room in a respectable 25 minutes, taking corners and crevices in its stride, but its navigation was fairly random. It lacks mapping and no-go zone capabilities, so get it going on a WFH day when you can keep an eye on it.

Key specifications
Number of cleaning modes: Auto, spot, edge and single room
Mapping technology: No
Charging time: 5-6 hours
Running time: 100 minutes
Canister capacity: 0.6 litres

Best for hard floors
Neato D9 Robot Vacuum
amazon.co.uk
£499.99

Instead of blowing it away, this Neato reliably cleaned up dust and debris from our tiled floors. It also proved effective on carpet, making it ideal if your home has a mixture of hard and soft flooring.

It struggled a tad with obstacles, getting stuck around a table leg, but it alerted our tester via the app. Its route wasn’t particularly systematic, but again the app proved helpful, recording its movements to help us spot missed areas.

Key specifications
Number of cleaning modes: Auto
Mapping technology: Yes
Charging time: 2 hours
Running time: 200 minutes
Canister capacity: 0.7 litres

Best budget Roomba
iRobot Roomba 698
irobot.co.uk
£239.00

iRobot prices can be eye-watering, but for just under £240, you can enjoy the great pick-up power, intuitive app and reliable voice control of the higher-end Roombas on our roundup.

Unsurprisingly, its lower price tag requires some compromise; while it aced our carpet and pet hair tests, it dispersed some dust on hard floors. It also lacks any mapping or no-go zone capabilities. As a result, it wasn’t the most efficient whole room cleaner, missing some edges and corners.

Key specifications
Number of cleaning modes: Auto and spot clean
Mapping technology: Yes
Charging time: 3 hours
Running time: 90 minutes
Canister capacity: 0.6 litres

This content is created and maintained by a third party, and imported onto this page to help users provide their email addresses. You may be able to find more information about this and similar content at piano.io
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
More From Shop Right Now