Roomba irobot

With a new house, new stuff comes in.

The original plan for the house was never to have to vacuum again. Never. We planned to get three robot vacuum cleaner - one for each floor - and let them attend to the mindless house-work. They would just take care of everything and keep all spotless.

As usual, theory and the real world are not necessarily sharing the same domain.

After living now the first month in the new house and not using a vacuum cleaner at all, but only brooms we have to acknowledge, that it is time to get started. Kids from all sorts are running through our house and adding to the dirt new houses come with anyway.

Checking the market for available offers, we quickly sobered up: The price ranges start at a couple of hundred and climb almost open end upwards.

So the first thing that went out the window were the number of robots. One has to be enough to keep at least the main living area clean.

The other requirements were quite less specific:

Keep it clean:

The robot should keep it clean. But how good is actually the technology? Are these merely some fancy toys or are they actually useful?

No internet:

I’d like a vacuum that also works without the internet, please. Besides that a thing that is in my house, can move around, has sensors and I have no idea whom it is working for? That gives me the creeps.


This should be “low” or “non-existent”. The time saved by outsourcing the job of cleaning, should not be used by keeping the thing running. Also spare-parts should be widely available.


Please, be affordable.

Something along those lines.

The whole vacuum robot thing is quite new to me. So I spent some hours digging into the market, the technology and what’s available.

All the robots that come with an app I immediately put away. The basic idea here is, that you can control the robot from everywhere. This requires some server/infrastructure somewhere and I have no idea what else is going to end up there. Let’s just say: I’ve heard some stories.

At the end I ended up with an Roomba iRobot. There are quite a few of them. All with different numbers and limited information what the differences are. The Roomba Website does not give me the information either. So it came to cross-referencing multiple sites, videos and blogs to find the information required.

In Kina I would have gotten a much fancier box for the same amount of money. But with an app. Just the country of origin adds another flavour to it, right?

So I aimed for the middle. I wanted to get the newer adjustments (like more suction) and still not venture off too far.

Until you get into too high price range it seems that Vacuum robots (without remote control) usually work the way:

  1. Charge

  2. Press a button

  3. Start working

This seems to be offline enough and still reliable. Got that covered then.

Regarding efficiency: I’ve called a buddy of mine and guess right: He had already one. He confirmed they actually work OK and do their job. That set the general OK for my terms to go ahead.

He also mentioned that he just simply stopped using the app of his robot for no reason. So: just another fancy thing you pay for. I was thinking anyway of programming the box with a weekly schedule and leave it there. As few interactions as necessary, I would say. An app just would increase the contact surface.

No we are waiting for delivery. This will take a week, I guess. Until then it’s about the old way of using the broom and trying to not making it more dirty as necessary.