Our family purchased a Roomba 655 Series robot vacuum from Costco. Upon telling friends about my purchase, they often ask “Does that thing really work?”. It amazes me that people aren’t familiar with the Roomba after the product has been available for so many years. I’m also surprised there isn’t one in every home.
OK. So does it really work?
To answer the question in short, yes! The Roomba does work. Our family uses it on our hardwood floors and rugs. Now that I have one, I’m not sure how I ever lived without it. The thing zigzags through my house and picks up some nasty dirt and pet hair from many unexplored corners of the house. I am amazed every time I dump the dirt out of the device at how much dirt it finds.
Do you really need a Roomba?
If your floors gather a huge amount of pet hair or dirt despite your best efforts at vacuuming regularly, the Roomba will pick up the slack. I would not use the Roomba to replace my classic upright vacuum. Unless your entire house is not carpeted, the Roomba should probably only be used in conjunction with an upright vacuum.
The difference of living with or without a Roomba becomes clear by walking around your house barefoot. Before I owned a Roomba, I would not walk around my own house without socks because of the dirt. I vacuumed weekly, but floors still had a bit of dirt on them. Now I walk around barefoot all the time and never feel any dust or dirt on my feet.
What are the cons to owning a Roomba?
The Roomba won’t clean absolutely everything. It will clean things like pet hair, sand, dust, and dirt flawlessly. But there are some things that the Roomba is not so good at grabbing. Sometimes it will miss stray cloth, lint, or feathers on my rug. It also sometimes misses items that are hard and round like a bead or popcorn kernel if the brush hits it in a certain way. On hard wood floors it can sometimes knock things across the room.
Unlike an upright vacuum, the Roomba requires quite a bit of care and maintenance. The brushes need to be cleaned often in a process that often involves a screwdriver. Fortunately, Roomba includes a nice kit with my model that assists with the maintenance process.
If you have a house that seems to gather abnormal amounts of dust or own a pet, a Roomba is well worth the expense. Don’t expect it to allow you to be lazy though as it won’t replace a standard upright vacuum and it takes work to maintain.
The important questions is if a Roomba is worth over $300 like the 655 model. They say that time is money, and I know this Roomba has saved a bunch of my family’s time. That fact makes any Roomba well worth the investment, and a recommendation I would make to any friend.