If you don't have time to regularly sweep or vacuum, robot vacuums are an easy way to make sure your home stays clean without you needing to do all the work. Since they use various types of technology such as lasers or cameras to navigate and maneuver around a room, they're generally able to avoid furniture and get beneath couches and tables with relative ease. Some even automatically empty their dirt compartments, which further reduces the work you need to do. Although they aren't as good at cleaning carpet as more traditional upright vacuums, many of them come with smart pathing technology to clean more efficiently. Many of them also come with companion apps or remote controls so you can set up scheduled cleaning times or place boundaries to keep it out of certain areas.
We've tested over 10 robot vacuums, and below are our recommendations for the best robot vacuums you can buy. These picks are selected not only based on their performance but also their feature set, design, and price. For more recommendations, take a look at our list of the best vacuums, the best vacuums for high-pile carpet, and the best vacuums for pet hair.
The Roborock S6 is the best robot vacuum for bare floors we've tested. This unique model has an outstanding performance on bare floors as it can pick up pet hair as well as small and large debris without a problem. Although we don't currently test this feature, it can also be reconfigured as a mop when you fill its water container and attach its mopping cloths, which can be useful for cleaning messes in the kitchen or bathroom.
It's well-suited to hardwood or tile flooring. It uses smart pathing technology to optimize its cleaning path, and thanks to its laser sensor, it navigates a room quite effectively. Thanks to its short design, it can easily fit under couches or tables. If you want to keep it out of some rooms, you can use the Roborock companion app to set up virtual barriers. The app also shows you which parts need maintenance, and you can even switch to 'Carpet' mode if you need increased suction. Its battery life is remarkable, and it can last just under two hours in its most powerful mode.
However, its performance on carpet is just alright as it struggles to pick up small and large debris on both low as well as high-pile carpet. It's also a somewhat difficult vacuum to maintain as many parts need regular maintenance. It has quite a few recurring costs as well since its disposable mopping attachments need constant replacement. That said, if you mostly have bare floors in your home, it can tackle wet and dry messes.
If you're looking to spend less but don't want to give up much in terms of performance, consider the Roborock E4. Since it uses a less sophisticated navigation system than the LIDAR-equipped Roborock S6, you can't schedule cleaning times for individual rooms or set up virtual boundary markers. It also doesn't have the S6's mop attachment as a standard-fit feature, though you can buy it as a separate accessory kit. That said, it returns slightly better cleaning performance on all surface types at a much lower price point. Depending on its power setting, it supplies roughly anywhere between two to over three hours of continuous runtime, which is remarkable. Unfortunately, like the S6, there are quite a few parts that require regular maintenance or replacement, so recurring costs can add up over time.
Get the S6 if you want more advanced automation technology, but consider the E4 if you value sheer cleaning performance above all else.
The iRobot Roomba S9 is the best robot vacuum cleaner for carpet that we've tested. This very well-built model delivers great performance on low-pile carpet and does a good job of sucking up debris on high-pile carpet. Thanks to its smoothly-rolling wheels, it maneuvers effectively on shaggy surfaces without getting stuck, while its automatic surface-adjustment feature allows it to seamlessly adapt to different floor types.
It's very well-built, with a high-grade plastic construction that feels quite premium. It uses an advanced navigation system to create a permanent virtual map of its cleaning area. This allows it to develop increasingly battery-efficient cleaning routes, which helps it achieve a continuous battery life of almost an hour, even when run continuously on its highest power setting. You can use its companion app to schedule cleaning times for individual rooms or set up virtual boundary markers for places you don't want the vacuum to clean.
Unfortunately, it has quite a few parts that require regular maintenance or replacement, as its brushroll, side brush, and allergen-trapping HEPA filter need to be replaced regularly, which are recurring costs that can add up over time. It's also a little heavy and lacks a carrying handle, so carrying it to another area can be a bit of a hassle. Overall, however, it's a great choice if you're looking for a robot vacuum that can easily handle carpeted floors.
The eufy RoboVac 11S is the best budget robot vacuum that we've tested. This affordable model offers decent performance on bare floors as it can pick up most small debris like rice. It also has a sturdy build quality and is easy to assemble out-of-the-box.
While it doesn't have a companion app, it comes with a remote control, which allows you to adjust the suction power or cleaning mode as well as schedule cleaning times. This remote doesn't need an internet connection to work either, which is handy. It has an excellent battery performance and can last over 100 minutes in its least powerful mode. Even in its most powerful suction mode, it lasts over an hour. It also comes with a cleaning tool to help detangle hair wraps.
Unfortunately, it struggles to pick up large debris like cereal on bare floors, and it loses its performance as its dirt compartment fills up. It also has an overall disappointing performance on low-pile carpet, and pet hair can get stuck in the brushroll when cleaning shaggy carpet. It has demanding maintenance needs, and several parts have to be replaced over time. That said, it's a suitable robot vacuum if you're shopping on a budget.
11/11/2020: Minor updates to the text, verification for accuracy.
10/21/2020: Replaced Neato Botvac D7 with iRobot Roomba S9 as 'Best Robot Vacuum For Carpet'. Added Neato Botvac D7 to Notable Mentions.
09/30/2020: Replaced Roborock S4 with Roborock E4 as 'More Affordable Alternative'.
Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best robot vacuums for most people. We factor in the price, feedback from our visitors, and availability.
If you would like to do the work of choosing yourself, here is the list of all our robot vacuum reviews. Be careful not to get too caught up in the details. While no vacuum is perfect for every use, most are good enough to please almost everyone, and the differences are often not noticeable unless you really look for them.