The 6 Best Robot Vacuums of 2021

Ahmet Misirligul/Shutterstock.com
🕚 Updated November 2021

Okay, you got us. Robot vacuums might not make for the most exciting holiday present, but we think they're a gift that can keep on giving all year round. And with one less chore to worry about, you'll finally have time to sit back and enjoy all the other gifts you got.

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  Best Overall Best Budget Best Premium Best Hybrid Best Low Profile Best for Pet Hair
 
  Roborock
S6
Wyze
Robot Vacuum
iRobot
Roomba s9+
ECOVACS
Deebot N8 Pro+
eufy
RoboVac 11S
iRobot Roomba
i3
 
Our SummaryThis robot vac from Roborock is plenty powerful and packed with features.Wyze keeps things budget-friendly with this vac, but it's mighty for the price.Splurging on this vac from iRobot is a worthwhile premium purchase.This reliable vac tackles vacuuming and mopping without breaking a sweat.Need a low-profile option that can go under your couch? Go for this one.This Roomba ain't afraid of no dog hair. Seriously, it's great for pet hair cleanup.
Prosβœ“ Hybrid vac & mop
βœ“ Multi-floor mapping
βœ“ Powerful suction
βœ“ Affordable
βœ“ No-go zone support
βœ“ Decent battery life
βœ“ Automatic bin emptying
βœ“ Powerful suction
βœ“ Smart map support
βœ“ Hybrid vac & mop
βœ“ Self-emptying
βœ“ Robust app
βœ“ Budget-friendly
βœ“ Easily navigates under furniture
βœ“ Auto-increase suction detection
βœ“ Powerful brushes tackle pet hair easily
βœ“ Recharge & resume battery
Consβœ— Priceyβœ— No voice assistant support
βœ— No multi-level mapping
βœ— Quite expensive
βœ— Large
βœ— Spendy
βœ— Smaller battery
βœ— Could have better battery
βœ— Middling suction capacity
βœ— No keep-out zones
βœ— No room-specific cleaning
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Happy Holidays! This article is part of our Holiday 2021 Gift Guide where you can find the best-of-the-best recommendations from Review Geek, LifeSavvy, and How-To Geek to help you pick the perfect gift for everyone on your list!

The 6 Best Robot Vacuums of 2021

Robot vacuum cleaner cleaning the living room
Ahmet Misirligul/Shutterstock.com

Robot vacuums have remained popular since they first hit showroom floors (and, well, floors everywhere, actually). You can set them up to run on a set schedule, and they’ll keep your floors looking and feeling tidy. They can even learn the layout of your home, so they don’t bump into furniture, and some are even capable of emptying their own bins and mopping after they vacuum. What’s not to like about that?

But with so many brands and models out there, it can be challenging to sort through them all and find one that’s actually good (and not terribly expensive). Fortunately, we did all the hard work for you, just like these vacuums will, and rounded up the best robot vacuums across all price ranges.

What to Look for in a Robot Vacuum

Although robot vacuum cleaners all have the same purpose, their design and features will vary from model to model. Ultimately, it all comes down to your budget and the feature set you want, so it’s worth taking a moment to familiarize yourself with them:

  • Suction Power:Β This one’s a no-brainer—you need a robot vacuum that sucks! Yep, it needs to be able to handle dust, pet hair, crumbs, and the other random bits of debris that always tend to find their way to the floor. Suction is measured in Pascals (or “Pa,” abbreviated). Keep in mind, though, that while these vacs are great at what they do, they still aren’t as powerful as traditional vacuums and might not be able to tackle fine particles or deeply embedded gunk. Good vacs will also be equally adept at cleaning both carpet and hard surfaces; if you only have the latter, your vac won’t need as much suction power.
  • Navigation:Β A robot vacuum is only as good as its navigation abilities. They need to be able to map out and travel around every inch of floor, yes, but they also need to be able to detect objects (like furniture), obstacles (toys, socks, wires, or pets), and any no-go boundaries you set. Typically, these vacs use LiDAR (light detection and ranging) sensors to navigate, but some also rely on algorithms, lasers, or cameras to get around successfully. Many even use smart maps (or intelligent zoning) to create a basic mock-up of your home’s layout so it can learn where walls, furniture, and stairs are; some even let you add no-go zones manually in their companion app (like by curios holding priceless trinkets or by pet food bowls). This helps keep them out of trouble and even lets you tell them to clean one specific area as needed.
  • Design:Β Generally, these vacs look pretty similar, though some have unique shapes that grant them extra functionality. Some have super-low profiles, allowing them to run underneath couches or bookshelves; D-shaped vacuums make it easier to catch dirt in corners. Larger vacuums may have longer brushes, more secondary brushes, and larger dust bin capacities. It all comes down to what specifics you want for your home.
  • Battery:Β Part of the fun of these little guys is that they work wirelessly (and tirelessly) to clean your floors for you. But that also means they run on a battery that won’t last forever. This is especially true for hybrid models that vacuum and mop. If you live in a smaller home or apartment, this shouldn’t be a huge deal; but if your home is quite large, you should carefully choose a vac with a hefty battery capacity or be cool with it returning to its dock to recharge then picking up where it left off.
  • Volume:Β As you’d expect from a vacuum, these, too, make noise. Some can run more quietly, around 55dB (as loud as a regular conversation or moderate rainfall), but most are louder, about 65-70dB (think city traffic, a hairdryer, or a noisy restaurant). Because they can take a while to clean your floors thoroughly, this can be a concern, especially if you have a sleeping baby, though you can typically set them up to run on a schedule or when it’s convenient for you.
  • Smart Features & Privacy:Β Sure, standard robot vacuums work just fine, but believe us: It’s nice to have some smart functionality. Many newer models can empty their own bins, detect collisions, run via voice commands, or connect to feature-rich apps that let you control cleaning. That’s all fine and well, but what about privacy? Do they store, transmit, or encrypt data like your home layout, Wi-Fi network name, or camera feed (if the vac has one)? Does the companion app (again, if applicable) ask for extensive permissions? These are generally secure, but certain smart features almost always mean potential vulnerabilities. We recommend reading manufacturer privacy policies, noting which permissions its app asks for, and double-checking whether the vac you chose uses a camera to navigate.
  • Additional Functionality:Β One of our favorite features newer robot vacuums are starting to offer is mopping. Yep, they’ll mop your floor after sucking up all the crud that was on them, sparing you yet another unpleasant chore. Most can also automatically return to their docks to charge, be programmed to run on a schedule, and even empty their dust bins into a compatible canister attached to the base (though not every model offers this excellent feature). Again, there are a lot of features to wade through with these gadgets; it just comes down to which ones you want and, of course, your budget.

Best Overall: Roborock S6

The Roborock S6 hybrid vacuum and mop
Roborock

Pros

  • Hybrid vac & mop
  • Multi-floor mapping
  • Powerful suction
  • Great battery life

Cons

  • Pricey

If you’re looking for a hybrid robot vacuum with strong suction, no-go zones, and room mapping capabilities, look no further than the Roborock S6. It uses LiDAR for precise navigation and a Z-shape cleaning route, plus you can save multiple maps and create no-go zones for every floor in your house.

You can control the bot vac either through its companion app (Android/iOS) or your voice assistant (Alexa, Google Assistant, or Siri). You can also tell the S6 to clean specific rooms or set it up to run on a regular schedule. Its 5200mAh battery can clean for up to three hours on a single charge, roughly equivalent to 2100 square feet on quiet mode).

The vacuum has powerful 2000Pa suction and automatically boosts its power whenever it detects carpet for deeper cleaning. Have hard floors that need to be mopped? No worries—with the long-range 180ml water tank, this vacuum can mop up to 1610 square feet and is adjustable for different types of flooring. It runs at about 69dB but also boasts a Quiet Mode option. And best of all? It’s priced well under 500 smackeroos.

Best Overall

Roborock S6

The Roborock S6 is our best overall pick for a great robot vacuum. It's packed with features and can handle messes on any floor type.

Best Budget: Wyze Robot Vacuum

Wyze Robot Vacuum and companion mobile app
Wyze

Pros

  • Affordable
  • No-go zone support
  • Decent battery life

Cons

  • No voice assistant support
  • No multi-level mapping

Yeah, these vacuums can get pretty expensive (see our Premium pick below), but that doesn’t mean you’re doomed if you’re not rocking a huge budget. You can still net a downright impressive vacuum (one that’s packed with nice features) for just a few hundred bucks, like this one from Wyze.

This robot vac has seven sets of sensors that it uses to map your home, detect obstacles and stairs, and navigate a cleaning path. In Wyze’s companion mobile app (Android/iOS), you can create no-go zones for the vac to maneuver around and even tell it to go clean one specific room instead of your entire house. The vac has 2100Pa of suction power, which is more than enough to handle everyday dirt as well as pet hair and heartier gunk embedded in carpet.

With three modes—Quiet, Standard, and Strong—you have control over cleaning levels and noise. The vac can run for approximately 110 minutes and will automatically return to its dock to charge. If it couldn’t finish the job in that time frame, it’ll drive itself back to where it left off before recharging and pick up right where it left off. Its one main shortcoming, however, is that it doesn’t support multi-level mapping, making it a better pick for those who don’t live in split-level homes.

Best Budget Vacuum

Wyze Robot Vacuum

Need a robot vac but don't want to spend a ton? Wyze has a terrific vacuum that works hard for the money.

Best Premium: iRobot Roomba s9+

iRobot Roomba s9+ with charger dustbin and companion mobile app
iRobot

Pros

  • Automatic bin emptying
  • Powerful suction
  • Smart map support

Cons

  • Quite expensive
  • Large

If price is no issue, we wholeheartedly recommend going with the iRobot Roomba s9+. Its smart design and super robust list of features make it an outstanding pick. Thanks to its Clean Base attached to the dock, this vac automatically empties itself after it runs; the base is large enough that you’ll only have to empty it once every 60 days.

It boasts a three-stage cleaning system that lifts, loosens, and eliminates debris and pet hair with its 40x suction power, and auto-increase function boosts suction when carpet or deep debris are detected. PerfectEdge Technology, myriad advanced sensors, and the special Corner Brush optimize cleaning around corners and surface edges, traditionally the most difficult areas to clean. The vac’s vSLAM navigation system helps it learn your home’s layout and build personal Smart Maps, while its Careful Drive Mode ensures it’ll detect objects and clean around them without bumping into them. Plus, its 30% wider brushes don’t get tangled with pet hair.

You can use voice commands—like “Roomba, clean under the kitchen table”—to have it clean up certain rooms or areas without it having to do a complete cleaning run. Through the robot vacuum’s companion mobile app (Android/iOS), you can also set up Keep Out Zones that it will avoid on future runs. The vac can even learn where you usually clean and suggest a tailored cleaning schedule.

Best Premium

iRobot Roomba s9+

Got a few extra bucks to spare? This powerful, feature-rich, premium vac is worth every penny.

Best Hybrid: ECOVACS Deebot N8 Pro+

ECOVACS Deebot N8 Pro+ with charging dustbin dock and app
ECOVACS

Pros

  • Hybrid vac & mop
  • Self-emptyingq
  • Robust app

Cons

  • Spendy
  • Smaller battery capacity

Looking for a device that can handle the vacuuming and the mopping? The ECOVACS Deebot N8 Pro+ is a powerful, hardworking option that’s ready to tackle whatever you throw at it. The vac offers hands-free cleaning, and you’ll only need to empty the disposable dust bag once every 30 days. You can also use the companion app (Android/iOS) to create virtual boundaries; divide, merge, and label rooms; and have complete control over automation, including assigning different cleaning settings to individual rooms.

The bot automatically avoids carpets when mopping and doubles its suction power on carpets while vacuuming for precision cleaning on every floor in your home. And with a maximum suction power of 2600Pa, that’s pretty impressive! It navigates your home using TrueDetect—a laser-based 3D technology that can detect and tell the vacuum to avoid things like cables, pet mess, or slippers and help prevent it from getting stuck anywhere.

LiDAR-based TrueMapping uses advanced aerospace-standard dToF detection sensors to generate ultra-precise mapping across a large range (compared to standard laser mapping). This helps create the most efficient cleaning path for your home. The vac has a runtime of 110 minutes; should it take longer to clean your home, it’ll automatically return to its dock to recharge then pick up where it left off afterward.

Best Hybrid

ECOVACS Deebot N8 Pro+

Want a darn good robot vac that can handle both vacuuming and mopping? This one. Choose this one.

Best Low-Profile Vacuum: eufy RoboVac 11S

eufy RoboVac 11S
eufy

Pros

  • Budget-friendly
  • Easily navigates under furniture
  • Auto-increase suction detection

Cons

  • Could have better battery
  • Middling suction capacity

If you need a robot vac that has a low enough profile to fit underneath your couch or dresser, eufy’s RoboVac 11S is the one to beat! It’s only 2.85 inches tall (most standard robot vacs tend to measure about 3.5 inches), yet it still packs a wallop when it comes to suction and running quietly. It lasts up to 100 minutes on a single charge.

This vacuum has BoostIQ technology that automatically increases suction within 1.5 seconds of detecting that it’s on carpet, thus ensuring they get cleaned as well as your tile or hardwood flooring. It also features an anti-scratch tempered glass-top cover for protection, an infrared sensor for detecting (and dodging) obstacles, and drop-sensing technology to stop it from flinging itself down your stairs. Heck, it even comes with a remote control so you can turn it on, program it, and more from the comfort of your couch.

Best Low-Profile

eufy RoboVac 11S

This vac is perfect for cleaning underneath your couch or other furniture, thanks to its low clearance.

Best for Pet Hair: iRobot Roomba i3

iRobot Roomba i3 with companion mobile app
iRobot

Pros

  • Powerful brushes tackle pet hair easily
  • Recharge & resume battery

Cons

  • No keep-out zones
  • No room-specific cleaning

Have lots of cats or dogs (or just one particular hairy one)? No worries. The iRobot Roomba i3 is the best vacuum for tackling pet hair, thanks to its dual multi-surface rubber brushes that don’t get tangled on anything. Its premium three-stage cleaning system offers 10x power-lifting suction, and it can automatically detect and adjust suction as it moves from hard floors to rugs or carpets. It even has a high-efficiency filter that captures 99% of cat and dog dander allergens.

You can use voice controls through Google Assistant or Alexa to initiate tasks like cleaning, and control other aspects—like setting up a schedule—via the companion mobile app (Android/iOS). It’s also compatible with Clean Base, iRobot’s base dustbin hub if you want the vac to empty its bin automatically.

Best for Pet Hair

iRobot Roomba i3

Need a robot vacuum that can obliterate pet hair in your home? This one is specially designed for the job.

Suzanne Humphries Suzanne Humphries
Suzanne Humphries is the Commerce Editor for Review Geek. She has over six years of experience across multiple publications researching and testing products, as well as writing and editing news, reviews, and how-to articles covering software, hardware, entertainment, networking, electronics, gaming, apps, security, finance, and small business. Read Full Bio Β»

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