Shark IQ Robot Vacuum Review

Tested using Methodology v0.8
Reviewed Nov 12, 2020 at 08:06 am
Shark IQ Robot Picture
7.0
Bare Floor
6.3
Low-Pile Carpet
6.8
High-Pile Carpet
7.4
Pets
6.1
Stairs
6.0
Cars
Vacuum Type
Robot
Bagless
Yes
Cordless
Yes
Anti-Allergy Filter (HEPA)
No

The Shark IQ Robot is a basic automated vacuum. It performs reasonably well on carpeted floors, has superb battery life, and can maneuver fairly effectively, even in a cluttered room. While it's well-built, it also has quite a few parts that require regular maintenance, not to mention frequent replacement, so recurring costs can add up quickly over time. Still, if you're looking for a reasonably versatile robot vacuum, this is a good choice.

Our Verdict

7.0 Bare Floor

The Shark IQ Robot is decent for bare floors. It's well-built and maneuvers decently well. It also clears pet hair and debris like rice easily. However, performance drops noticeably as its dirt compartment fills, since it can struggle to suck up bulky material like cereal. Recurring costs can add up quickly, and quite a few parts need to be serviced or replaced frequently.

Pros
  • Outstanding performance on bare floors.
  • Good build quality.
  • Superb battery life.
Cons
  • Demanding maintenance requirements.
  • High recurring costs.
  • Struggles to suck up bulky debris with a partially-filled dirt compartment.
6.3 Low-Pile Carpet

The Shark IQ Robot is passable for cleaning low-pile carpets. It clears pet hair and coarse material like sand without issue but struggles a lot more with fine debris like baking soda. There are quite a few parts that require routine maintenance or replacement. Thankfully, it feels well-made.

Pros
  • Good build quality.
  • Superb battery life.
  • Maneuvers effectively on carpeted floors.
Cons
  • Demanding maintenance requirements.
  • High recurring costs.
  • Struggles to suck up bulky debris with a partially-filled dirt compartment.
6.8 High-Pile Carpet

The Shark IQ Robot is an okay choice for high-pile carpet. It cleans decently well on this kind of surface, clearing most pet hair and coarse debris, but has some issues with sucking up finer material. It has quite a few recurring costs and many components need to be routinely serviced to keep the vacuum at peak performance.

Pros
  • Good build quality.
  • Superb battery life.
  • Maneuvers effectively on carpeted floors.
Cons
  • Demanding maintenance requirements.
  • High recurring costs.
  • Struggles to suck up bulky debris with a partially-filled dirt compartment.
7.4 Pets

The Shark IQ Robot is satisfactory for dealing with pet hair. It does an excellent job of cleaning pet hair on bare floors and does a good job sucking it up on both low and high-pile carpet. That said, it has fairly demanding maintenance requirements and quite a few recurring costs, though its brushroll is self-cleaning, so hair wraps shouldn't be a significant concern. Unfortunately, it also lacks an allergen-trapping HEPA filter.

Pros
  • Very good pet hair cleaning capability.
  • Good build quality.
  • Superb battery life.
Cons
  • Demanding maintenance requirements.
  • High recurring costs.
  • No HEPA filter to trap allergens.
6.1 Stairs

The Shark IQ Robot is a robot vacuum that isn't designed for stairs.

6.0 Cars

The Shark IQ Robot isn't designed to clean car interiors.

  • 7.0 Bare Floor
  • 6.3 Low-Pile Carpet
  • 6.8 High-Pile Carpet
  • 7.4 Pets
  • 6.1 Stairs
  • 6.0 Cars
  1. Update 11/19/2020: Fixed Companion App field input error.

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Design
7.5
Design
Build Quality

The Shark IQ Robot vacuum has good build quality. Its body is made of dense plastic, accented with a rubber front bumper. Its dirt compartment is made of hard plastic, but it scratches easily and could break if it's dropped. Its main drive wheels have a thick rubber tread. It doesn't require too much assembly out-of-the-box, requiring only that you snap in the two included side brushes and place the appliance on its charging dock.

4.0
Design
User Maintenance

The Shark IQ Robot is a bit difficult to maintain, due to the high number of parts that need maintenance, but they're easy to access.

  • Dust bin: The dust bin can be removed by pressing the release button on the rear. There's an anti-tangle comb attached to the dust bin that can collect hair wraps, which can later be removed by hand. The bin itself should be emptied after every use.
  • Pre-motor filter: The pre-motor filter is located inside the dirt compartment and can be pulled out via its release tabs. It should be cleaned regularly by tapping it against the side of a garbage bin, as it can't be rinsed under water.
  • Brushroll: The brushroll can be accessed via a door under the vacuum and then removed. While it's advertised to be self-cleaning, you may still have to cut out tangled debris with scissors or by hand.
  • Side brushes: The side brushes can be simply pulled out of their socket for maintenance. They should be cleaned with a dry cloth whenever you notice a buildup of debris.
  • Drive wheels: The drive wheels should be dusted regularly. Be sure to rotate them in their housing.
  • Front wheel: The front wheel can be simply pulled from its housing, though this may take a bit of effort and the assistance of a tool. It should be cleared of debris regularly.
  • Sensors: The sensors on the vacuum should be cleaned periodically with a dry cloth.
  • Charging pads: The charging pads under the vacuum and on top of the dock should be dusted whenever you notice debris buildup.

4.0
Design
Recurring Cost
Bag Part Number
No bag
Filter Part Number
RVFFK950
HEPA Filter Part Number
No HEPA Filter

This vacuum has quite a few recurring costs.

  • Pre-motor filter: No replacement interval is specified for the filter, though the user manual does state that it's best to clean and replace it regularly to maintain peak performance.
  • Brushroll: The brushroll should be replaced whenever you observe visible wear or every six to 12 months.
  • Side brushes: The side brushes should be changed when bent or damaged.
  • Front wheel: The front wheel requires replacement after 12 months.

You can purchase any one of these parts, as well as additional accessories, on Shark's website.

9.0
Design
Storing
Height
3.35 in (8.5 cm)
Width
12.40 in (31.5 cm)
Depth
14.76 in (37.5 cm)
Cord Storing/Management
Not Needed
On-Board Tool Storage
Not needed
Vacuum Rack/Station
Yes

The Shark IQ Robot is exceptionally easy to store. Its body is compact and low to the ground while its charging dock doesn't take up much space.

6.2
Design
Dirt Compartment
Dirt Compartment Volume
0.11 gal (0.40 L)
Full Dirt Compartment Indicator
No
Bag Included
No Bag Needed

The Shark IQ Robot has an unremarkably-sized dirt compartment. It holds more debris than alternatives like the iRobot Roomba 675, but it lacks a level indicator and doesn't have a fill sensor to let you know when it has reached max capacity.

Design
In The Box

  • Shark IQ Robot vacuum
  • Dust bin
  • Filter
  • 4x Side brushes
  • Brushroll
  • Brusroll door
  • Charging dock
  • Boundary strip
  • User guide

10
Design
Range
Cord Length
N/A
Hose Length
N/A

The Shark IQ Robot vacuum has an effectively unlimited range for as long as it has room left in its dirt compartment and remaining battery life, but it can't climb or descend stairs.

8.2
Design
Portability
Total Weight
5.84 lbs (2.65 kg)
Weight In Hand
0.00 lbs (0.00 kg)
Carrying handle
No

This robot vacuum is quite portable. It doesn't weigh too much, but it lacks a carrying handle to lift it from room to room.

9.0
Design
Battery
Minimum Battery Life
70 min.
Maximum Battery Life
164 min.
Recharge Time
273 min.
Recharge Dock
Yes
Battery Life Indicator
Yes
Removable Batteries
Yes

The Shark IQ Robot's battery performance is remarkable. On its high-suction 'Max' mode, it yields over an hour of continuous runtime. On its more conservative 'Eco' mode, it can run for over 160 minutes, which should be more than enough to clean big rooms. Unfortunately, it takes over four hours to completely recharge, which is very long. The lights on top also clearly indicate the remaining battery life. When both lights are blue, the vacuum is at max battery capacity. At a partial charge, one of the lights will turn off. At low battery levels, one of the lights turns red.

Design
Quality Of Life Features
Rotating Head
No
Power Adjustment
Yes
Self-Propelled
Yes
Headlights
No
Easy On/Off
Yes
Surface Type Adjustment
Manual

This vacuum has few quality of life features. It has three power modes. The energy-saving 'Eco' mode, the default 'Normal' mode, and the high-power 'Max' mode. You can swap between these modes in the companion app only when the appliance is running.

Design
Tools And Brushes
Brushroll
Yes
Brushroll On/Off
No
Removable Brushroll
Yes
Turbo Brush
No
Crevice Tool
No
Upholstery Tool
No
Soft Bristle Brush
No
Hard Bristle Brush
No
Extension Wand
No
Ceiling Fan Tool
No
Pet Grooming Tool
No

The Shark IQ Robot has two offset side brushes that bring debris on the edges of the vacuum's body into the path of the main brushroll.

Design
Alternative Configuration

The Shark IQ Robot has no alternative configurations.

Performance
8.0
Performance
Bare Floor (Hardwood, Laminate, Tiles)
Pet Hair at 0 gal (0L)
85 %
Large Debris at 0 gal (0L)
95 %
Large Debris at 0.07 gal (0.25L)
22 %
Large Debris at 0.2 gal (0.75L)
N/A
Large Debris at 0.4 gal (1.5L)
N/A
Large Debris at 0.8 gal (3L)
N/A
Large Debris at 1.6 gal (6L)
N/A
Small Debris at 0 gal (0L)
100 %
Small Debris at 0.07 gal (0.25L)
99 %
Small Debris at 0.2 gal (0.75L)
N/A
Small Debris at 0.4 gal (1.5L)
N/A
Small Debris at 0.8 gal (3L)
N/A
Small Debris at 1.6 gal (6L)
N/A
Setting Used "Normal"

This vacuum delivers great performance on bare floors. It clears pet hair as well as debris like rice and bulky material like cereal with ease. However, once its dirt compartment fills up, it struggles with sucking up large debris and pushes it around instead. If you want something that can suck up bulky debris even as its dirt compartment fills, check out the Yeedi K650.

6.7
Performance
Low-Pile Carpet
Pet Hair at 0 gal (0L)
94 %
Large Debris at 0 gal (0L)
76 %
Large Debris at 0.07 gal (0.25L)
75 %
Large Debris at 0.2 gal (0.75L)
N/A
Large Debris at 0.4 gal (1.5L)
N/A
Large Debris at 0.8 gal (3L)
N/A
Large Debris at 1.6 gal (6L)
N/A
Small Debris at 0 gal (0L)
40 %
Small Debris at 0.07 gal (0.25L)
31 %
Small Debris at 0.2 gal (0.75L)
N/A
Small Debris at 0.4 gal (1.5L)
N/A
Small Debris at 0.8 gal (3L)
N/A
Small Debris at 1.6 gal (6L)
N/A
Setting Used "Normal"

This vacuum's performance on low-pile carpet is alright. It has a better performance on this surface type than the Shark AI Robot, as it easily picks up pet hair and clears most coarse debris, such as sand. However, it struggles a lot more with finer material, like baking soda.

7.3
Performance
High-Pile Carpet
Pet Hair at 0 gal (0L)
77 %
Large Debris at 0 gal (0L)
63 %
Large Debris at 0.07 gal (0.25L)
63 %
Large Debris at 0.2 gal (0.75L)
N/A
Large Debris at 0.4 gal (1.5L)
N/A
Large Debris at 0.8 gal (3L)
N/A
Large Debris at 1.6 gal (6L)
N/A
Small Debris at 0 gal (0L)
50 %
Small Debris at 0.07 gal (0.25L)
42 %
Small Debris at 0.2 gal (0.75L)
N/A
Small Debris at 0.4 gal (1.5L)
N/A
Small Debris at 0.8 gal (3L)
N/A
Small Debris at 1.6 gal (6L)
N/A
Setting Used "Normal"

This robot vacuum performs decently on high-pile carpet. It clears most pet hair and coarse debris, and does a fair overall job when it comes to dealing with finer material.

7.0
Performance
Maneuverability
Under The Couch
Good
Under Low Table
Good
On Furniture
Not Possible
Rug With Tassel
Bad
Electric Cord
Ok

The Shark IQ Robot's maneuverability is satisfactory. It cleans thoroughly and shouldn't miss any parts of a room. It's low enough to squeeze under couches and tables and doesn't bump into furniture. It can clear low-lying obstructions like electrical cords without getting stuck, but rug tassels can get caught in its brushroll.

Automation
6.0
Automation
Automation (Robot Vacuum)
Remote Controller
No
Automatic Bag Emptying
No
Automatic Recharging
Yes
Schedule Programming
Yes
Boundary Markers
Yes
Random Pathing
No
Smart Pathing
Yes
App Name
SharkClean

Update 11/19/2020: Fixed input error in the Companion App field. The score and text have been updated.

The Shark IQ Robot has a mediocre range of automation features. The SharkClean companion app provides you with a battery life indicator, push notifications concerning the vacuum's status, firmware updates, and a voice control function if you have an Amazon Alexa or Google Home device. It also lets you change its power mode, command it to head to a specific room, or have it return to its charging dock. Unlike the Shark ION Robot 2020, it comes with physical boundary marker strips, which can be used to prevent it from entering certain areas. Unfortunately, it can't be remote-piloted through its companion app, which is a feature that alternatives like the eufy RoboVac G30 Edge do have.

Differences Between Sizes And Variants

We tested the base 'Black' variant of the Shark IQ Robot with the R101 model code, and you can see its label here. Another variant, referred to as the Shark IQ Robot Self-Empty Vacuum, comes with an external dirt bin/charging station for automatic debris disposal. We can't confirm that this model performs similarly, as its automatic dirt emptying capabilities could have an impact on performance.

If someone comes across a differently-equipped variant, let us know in the discussions below so that we can update our review.

Compared To Other Vacuums

The Shark IQ Robot is a simple robot vacuum. It's well-built and has remarkable battery life, not to mention a great performance on surfaces like hardwood or linoleum. Unfortunately, it struggles more with finer debris on carpeted surfaces and loses suction performance when its dirt compartment fills up. If you're looking for alternatives, take a look at our list of recommendations of the best robot vacuums for hardwood floors, the best robot vacuums for pet hair, and the best robot vacuums for carpet.

iRobot Roomba E5

The Shark IQ Robot and the iRobot Roomba E5 have different advantages. The Shark performs better on all surface types, has a larger dirt compartment, and longer battery life. The iRobot is better-built, easier to maintain, and charges substantially faster. It also has a HEPA filter to trap allergens as it cleans.

Roborock S6

The Roborock S6 is better overall than the Shark IQ Robot. The Roborock has an allergen-trapping HEPA filter as well as superior build quality and battery performance. It also delivers better overall cleaning capability on bare floors and low-pile carpet while maneuvering far more effectively. That said, the Shark picks up a little more material on shaggy carpets.

iRobot Roomba 960

The iRobot Roomba 960 and Shark IQ Robot have different strengths. The Shark performs better on bare floors as well as low and high-pile carpet and has longer maximum battery life. Meanwhile, the iRobot is better-built, easier to maintain, incurs fewer recurring costs, has a larger dust bin, and recharges in less than a third of the time.

Roborock S5

The Roborock S5 is a better vacuum than the Shark IQ Robot. The Roborock is better-built, easier to maintain, and has lower recurring costs. It also has better battery performance, with a longer overall battery life despite a shorter charging time. It performs better on bare floors and even comes with a mopping attachment to clear sticky messes, though we don't test for that. However, the Shark clears more debris on carpeted surfaces and is a little more compact.

eufy RoboVac G30 Edge

The Shark IQ Robot is a better overall robot vacuum than the eufy RoboVac G30 Edge. The Shark does a better job of cleaning debris on bare floors as well as low and high-pile carpet, feels better-made, and maneuvers over obstructions like electrical cords more effectively. Meanwhile, the eufy is a little easier to maintain and can be remote-piloted via its companion app.

Shark AI Robot

The Shark IQ Robot is a better robot vacuum than the Shark AI Robot. While both robot vacuums are well-built, the IQ Robot has superior overall performance on all surface types. However, the AI Robot has fewer recurring costs and has better maneuverability as well as longer battery life. You can also remote control is via the SharkClean companion app, unlike the IQ Robot.

Shark ION Robot 2020

The Shark IQ Robot is a better option for most use cases than the Shark ION Robot 2020. The IQ clears debris more effectively on all surface types, uses smart-pathing to plot more efficient cleaning routes, and comes with boundary makers to prevent it from moving into certain areas. Meanwhile, the ION has a much longer battery life while taking less time to recharge.

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