Some things to think about before you ditch your regular vacuum cleaner for a sexy robot.
Let’s admit it. Part of the attraction of buying a robot vacuum cleaner is exactly that – it’s a robot. We get a thrill out of watching a machine wake up on its own, zip around the home and keep our floors clean, without us having to lift a finger.
With more and more brands jumping on the band wagon, these hardworking little cleaners are also getting cheaper. You can now buy a China-made Xiaomi model for about $350 online from their official store, which comes with all the bells and whistles and total control via a phone app.
If you’re considering buying one, here are some pros and cons you should know.
1. Saves you the hassle of time and cleaning
This one is a no-brainer. A modest 4-room HDB flat averages 970sqft – that’s 970sqft of space you need to clean regularly. Having a robot vacuum cleaner do the dirty work means you can put your effort in other things, such as scrubbing toilet bowls. Well, at least until someone invents a robot toilet cleaner!
2. Compact and independent cleaners
Robot vacuum cleaners these days come equipped with lasers, motherboards, sensors, and even Wi-Fi to move around your home on their own. These compact machines come with charging docks and when the battery runs low, they will go ‘home’ and charge up (buy one with lithium ion batteries that last longer), before continuing to hoover up all that dirt. You will hardly even notice them and don’t even have to touch them most of the time.
3. Allows you to set a cleaning schedule
You can set it to work using a remote control or even a phone app so that it cleans while you’re out every day, and you can come home to clean floors. Also, many robot vacuums come with HEPA filters too, so they stop allergens from spreading through the air as they suck up dust, hair and other debris into a dust bin that you can easily remove to empty. No fussy dust bag to meddle with!
1. It only cleans the floor
If you, like us, like to vacuum your rugs, sofa, bed and drapes regularly to keep your home spick and span, you can’t do so with a Roomba. For those who are allergic to dust or dust mites, it is important to keep your environment as clean as possible. Some may be used to weekly vacuuming of the bed to suck up dead body cells and prevent dust mites from building happy colonies.
2. It may not be powerful enough if you live with pets
Pets shed fur all year round and require a lot of cleaning after them. All pet owners are resigned to our fate and religiously vacuum with a trusty vacuum cleaner. “We use our robot cleaner for ‘surface cleaning’ every day but still need to drag our regular vacuum cleaner around for a proper clean-up at least once a week,” says Sharon Neo, who has a 4-year-old poodle. So while the robot will ease a bit of your work, you can’t throw out your regular and more powerful cleaner just yet.
3. They can be pretty expensive
You can get a regular vacuum cleaner from Philips or EuropAce for under $70 on sale at local chain stores. We even found one from Power Pac at $39.90! But robot cleaners usually start from $300 and above, and can cost as much as $2898 for a Finether Floor Vacuum, shipped in via Lazada.sg. It even comes with replacement mopping cloths for wood, tile, marble, carpet and flooring. Is it worth blowing almost $3000 on a robot vacuum cleaner? Well, guess it depends on how deep your pockets are!