Robot vacuums have been around for a while now, and as the market increases in size, prices are starting to go down. No longer do you have to pay $500 or $700 for a robot vacuum; in some cases, you can even find them for less than $200, making them great for yourself or a good gift for a techie friend.
Of course, a robot vacuum is by no means a necessity—but the cool factor is tough to beat. It feels a bit like having Rosie from the Jetsons rolling around your house. But which robot vacuums will give you the best bang for your buck? Here are six of the best that you can get for $400 or less.
If you’re looking to save as much as possible on a robot vacuum and still get one that will keep your house clean, the Hovo 510 is a good bet. It’s great for hardwood floors, comes with a blocker to create a cleaning boundary, and has two speeds so you can customize just how quickly it will vacuum your house.
Let’s get one thing straight: this isn’t the best robot vacuum out there. At less than half the price of many of the options, you’re not going to get best-in-class cleaning power. But a number of reviewers have been surprised at how effective the Hovo 510 is for less than $200. This is a good entry-level vacuum and could be a first step toward an affordable smart home.
Roomba has become synonymous with automated cleaning solutions, and it remains in the top spot for a reason: iRobot makes good robot vacuums. They get good reviews, they come with decent warranties, and they pack a lot of cleaning power. The 560 is a solid mid-range robot vacuum, and buying refurbished is a great way to get a deal on it.
It comes with two boundary blockers and an extra filter, so you won’t need to invest more money in this vacuum for a while. On-board scheduling lets you set up to seven pre-set times each week for the Roomba to vacuum, and a single charge will let it vacuum up to four rooms before it has to return to the base station. All in all, a well-rounded robot vacuum for a great price.
If you have pets, you know that you need some extra vacuum power to keep your house clean. The three-stage cleaning system, extra power, and ability to spend more time on dirtier areas help the 650 to keep your house clean regardless of whether you have a single cat or an entire dog pack. (Though you may want to get extra filters if you’re going to be dealing with a lot of fur.)
Although it doesn’t pack the more advanced software, extra cleaning accessories, and very limited maintenance of the higher-end models (which can run you up to $600), the mid-range set of features in the Roomba 650 are enough to justify its slightly higher price tag than most of the other vacuums on this list.
Although the BotVac name isn’t as venerable as Roomba, you might be hearing it a lot more in the near future. The higher-end entries in NEATO’s older XV line were well-received, and some of that technology has been integrated into the BotVacs. They sport a very large brushroll, LaserSmart mapping technology, and a D shape that lets it get close to the wall.
The LaserSmart mapping and navigation allow the vacuum to plan the most efficient path through any room instead of bumping around to find the walls, allowing the BotVac to clean significantly faster than other robotic vacuums. And the extra large dust bin means you don’t have to empty the vacuum as often. It costs more than other options, but the extra expense is worth it.
If you have both carpets and hard floors in your house, you might be faced with the decision of whether you should get a robotic vacuum or a mopping robot—but Moneual has you covered for both surfaces with a single device. The H68 can vacuum, mop, or do both at the same time for extra cleaning of your hard floors.
You might have to set up some small barriers to make sure that the robot doesn’t start mopping your carpet, but it shouldn’t be too hard to get everything set up so the Moneual H68 works well. It’s received good-but-not-great reviews, and is definitely worth looking into if you have multiple types of floors.
Another vacuum-mop hybrid, the bObsweep PetHair packs enough power to get pet hair off of your floor—it also uses UV sterilization to reduce the amount of bacteria present on your floors, further contributing to a clean home. Reviewers of the bObsweep have praised its ability to get long hairs off of the floor, something other robot vacuums occasionally have trouble with.
With the standard features like self charging, a remote control, and a programmable schedule, the bObsweep is a prime candidate for pet owners who are tired of vacuuming all the time.
It’s Time to Buy a Robot Vacuum
Until recently, buying a robot vacuum has been expensive and a bit of a gamble; the technology was still new, some companies were in the process of figuring out how to manufacture the devices, and most of them were prohibitively expensive. Now, however, the prices have come down, the quality has come up, and you have plenty of choices. Furniture is getting smarter, and it’s time that cleaning did, too.
Are you planning on buying a robot vacuum? Do you already have one? What do you think of it? Would you recommend it to others? Share your thoughts below!