Sate of the Art Robots
Robotic vacuum cleaners have finally come of age and although they can still be expensive they are now very capable. You buy these because you don’t want to spend time doing that mundane but important choir.
Well there’s some good news, the latest best robot vacuum cleaners are really good.
We’ve listed here some of the most popular robot vacuum cleaners that you should consider. These are stellar machines that will do the that most simple of jobs for you – vacuuming.
What to Look for in your new Robot Vac
Nice to have features include smartphone access. Everyone has a smartphone these days and lots of white goods have controls and settings accessible from a smartphone (Apple and Android). And automatic vacuum cleaners are joining this group. So although it’s not a deal breaker, it’s a really nice feature to have and means you can control and monitor device from literally anywhere.
A little background
Any domestic task that can be automated means less trivial choirs to do and more time doing what we really want to do. In this vain, vacuum cleaners were seen as a straight forward problem to solve. But it was anything but simple.
Commercially available vacuum cleaner robots began to appear in the late 90’s but these weren’t very powerful, got stuck a lot – just going and backwards and forwards a lot and not making any progress. Eventually the the battery would run down with little cleaning done. They also found it difficult to handle both hard floors and carpets., especially deep pile carpets.
Battery life was low, software was quite crude. However, as we entered the noughties, better and better models were introduced. In 2002 the Roomba was introduced, this proved very popular and many thousands of units were made and sold.
A big problem in the early was the battery/electric motor combination. Bigger motors created more suction but were heavy and used more power. Smaller motors meant that the vacuum cleaner would run for longer, cover more ground but wouldn’t be particularly great at picking everything up.
Inevitably a compromise had to be made and that resulted in a less than satisfactory machine.
The state of the Technology
So a full twenty years have passed since the first robot was shown to the public – a lot has changed.
To start with, the software has improved immensely. What this give the Robot Vac is the ability to process information much faster. This allows the robot to map out the floor plan and to know exactly where it is at any given time. Because of this, the vacuum cleaner knows when the power in its batteries is almost spent and can navigate to its charging device for a charge refresh.
Sensors on the device detect carpets and hard floors and are able to make an adjustment to the pickup brushes, to accommodate different surface types.
But above all, it’s the motor department which has seem big improvements. Motors on both handheld portable vacuum cleaners and on the new robot vacuum cleaners are very capable and don’t cause a massive drain on the batteries. One of the main limitations of the old designs.
Getting the most from your Robot
Although the ability to navigate around objects left lying on the floor is programmed in to each bot. You’ll help it and yourself as well, if you leave the floor area tidy. When you do this you can expect the floor to be vacuumed properly which is what we want.
Any steps you have between rooms will obviously present a problem but small steps should be okay. When we say small we’re talking about half an inch or so. You would either have to live with this limitation or install a gentle slope from one room to the other. But this is rarely practical, it depends on you circumstances.
take a look at a robot in action click here to see all its features
At this time stairs are an issue, no robot currently handles stairs. So you need a small hand held vac to do these still.
As well as not cleaning stairs, none of the current robotic vacuum cleaners can negotiate stairs. So if you have a house or apartment on two floors, you either have to carry the robot cleaner to the floor you want it to clean or buy two cleaners. Buying more than one robot vac starts to get more expensive and if you have more than two floors it’s unlikely that anyone would buy three or more, as this would just be too expensive.
It would be advisable to make your floor “robot” friendly. By that we mean that you want to get the best for your investment. Therefore keep the floor clear of unnecessary obstacles and keep any power cables neat and against walls where you can, although the better robot vacs can deal with these.
Although robot vacs will make the transition from hard floor to carpet quite successfully you need to be wary about loose rugs. Especially light rugs that move when pushed. There’s the possibility of the vac pushing the rug around the floor instead of mounting it to clean it. This is easy fixed with an underlay.
Dog eared rugs, where the corner folds up are also quite challenging. They might look trivial to us but to a robot vac they present a problem, as they will see it as an obstacle ad try and go around it.
So, do we recommend buying a Robot Vacuum Cleaner? The answer is yes. We’re in an evolutionary cycle with these devices and technology will certainly improve as we head into the future. But today we have machines that are very able and will do the bulk of what needs to be done automatically and regularly.
You won’t be able to give up your regular vac just yet. But these robot vacuum cleaners will do an admiral job and save you time. And the time saving is a big plus point for us.
If you have a cleaner doing this choir for you, then you’ll definitely save money in the long term. The floors and carpets then get cleaned every day, instead of when the cleaner shows up.