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How long do Roombas last? Tips To Extend Roomba’s Life

If you are looking to buy a Roomba, a robotic vacuum cleaner offered by iRobots, and want to know beforehand, how long do Roombas last? You have landed on the right page. Read through this complete guide that will not only tell you the lifespan of a Roomba vacuum cleaner but will also answer the following most frequently asked questions about Roombas and their batteries.

  • How long do Roombas last? 
  • How to make Roombas last longer? 
  • How long do Roomba batteries last? 
  • How to make the Roomba battery last longer?
how long do roombas last

Roombas are expensive. Once you buy one, you would surely want to get value for your money. And this value depends on the features that the Roomba offers. The lifespan of a Roomba is one of them. Surely you won’t want to see your $1500 turn into scrap in just one year. So it is better to find out how long will a Roomba last once you make the purchase. 

Quick overview

Roombas can last as long as 15 years and as little as 2 years. Roombas’ life expectancy depends on many factors. Keeping your Roomba clean will add a good number of years to its life. Frequency of use is another factor. Using your Roomba 3 times a week will make it last longer than using it 5 times a week. 

The Roombas can be made to last longer. This can be done by keeping it cleaned and serviced, replacing its parts, brush, filters, battery, bin, and sensors, whenever you think Roomba is losing its performance. 

Roomba batteries can give you a cleaning session of around 1.5 to 2 hours and can last up to 2 years if well maintained. Roomba batteries can also be made to last longer by following some simple steps.

How long do Roombas last?

We have analyzed Roomba vacuum cleaners from many aspects. We also have searched for Roomba reviews from different customers across different platforms, most of whom are using robotic vacuums for as long as 20 years. Yes, you have read that right. From customer reviews, the maximum lifespan of a Roomba vacuum cleaner has come to be around 15 years. On the other extreme, some customers complained it died even within 2 years

You might be wondering, why is there so much of a gap between Roomba lifespan? The life expectancy of a Roomba depends on many factors.

Frequency of use

One factor in the longevity of a Roomba’s life is the frequency of use. How many times do you use your Roomba and what is the duration of cleaning sessions you do every time. If you use your Roomba twice a week, expect it to go a long way as compared to using it 6 times a week. Battery-operated electronic devices usually have a lifetime measurable in hours. if a Roomba comes with a life of around 3000 hours, it is up to you whether you consume those 3000 hours in one year or in 10 years.

Pets

pets and roomba

If you are a pet lover and have multiple pets in your house, your Roomba is up for a hectic cleaning task every day. Your Roomba will not only have to pick more pet hair but it might also be forced to give a ride to one of your pets. This is very common with pets. They, especially dogs, love to ride on and play around with Roomba. Sometimes pets ride on your Roomba while sometimes they try to play hide and seek with it. It happens all the time in my house. My dog has actually made a map for himself. Now he guides my Roomba, as he has memorized the Roomba path, where he is about to go. 

Area to clean

The life expectancy of a Roomba also depends on how many areas you clean with your Roomba. If you have a large area to clean, Roomba will have to work more. You might have to recharge your Roomba battery for completing your floor. 

If you have multiple carpets and rugs in your house, this will require more effort from Roomba. Cleaning carpets, especially medium and high pile carpets, need more brush action. These brush bristles agitate the carpet pile and dig up the dust and debris from the bottom of the carpet. The more carpets you have in your house, the more power needed to clean them. 

How well is Roomba maintained?

If you think buying a Roomba, or any robotic vacuum cleaner, will make you forget about cleaning, you are wrong. Robotic vacuum cleaners need maintenance

The most important factor, on which a Roomba’s total life depends, is the way you maintain it. Electronic devices need regular maintenance and upkeep. 

Roombas are made to get dirty. The dust, dirt, hair, and other debris that Roombas suck usually get stuck into their inner parts. This causes friction between them. If Roomba is not cleaned periodically, at least once a month, this friction will cause Roomba to use more battery power, increase charging time, and will also worsen the condition of the parts as well. Suction power will also be lost since Roomba has to do extra work to move its different parts. Dirty wheels and sensors will make your Roomba put all the efforts in one place instead of cleaning the whole house

This will not only reduce the overall life of a Roomba but will also make it louder.

Keeping your robot vacuum from getting stuck under furniture and other places will also help in extending its life. 

How to make Roomba last longer?

Once you have bought a Roomba, you would surely want it to stay with you for the longest time and in the best condition possible. This will require some effort on your part. Following are some steps you can take to make your Roomba last longer

Clean Roomba frequently

Roombas and other robotic vacuum cleaners are set and forget vacuums. This means you can program the Roomba and it will do the task on its own. Forgetting about it doesn’t mean you should leave it at the mercy of the dust and other mess that it picks up. Besides emptying the dirt bin, you will have to thoroughly clean the Roomba for it to live longer than usual. Dust, pet hair, and fluff get stuck in the brush and under the brush bearings of the Roomba, making it work slowly. This not only consumes more battery power but also lowers the overall health of the Roomba. 

To extend the life of Roomba and to make it operate more quietly, you should empty the dust bin and clean the filter after every use. Doing a thorough cleaning session of Roomba once a week would be ideal. A clean and fresh Roomba works more efficiently and consumes less battery power. Keeping it clean might stretch the life of the Roomba even up to 10 years, as happened with some customers who cleaned and serviced their Roomba every week or so. 

Ensuring that every pet hair and dust particle is out of its brush and inner side will make it feel fresh and new every time you use it. 

Dust and fluff also get stuck on the Roomba dock and its connectors. This causes obstruction in charging. If the connectors have caught dirt and fluff, Roomba might not get proper charging. So, cleaning the dock and the connectors is also required to prolong the Roomba’s lifespan.

Replace parts as required

Roomba is an electronic device and is a combination of different smaller parts. If a Roomba is not working properly, it doesn’t mean it has seen better days. There might be a possibility that some of its parts are not working properly. To extend the life of your Roomba, you will have to replace Roomba parts as soon as you notice low performance. 

Brush

brush of a roomba robotic vacuum cleaner

The brush head of any vacuum is the main part of cleaning, especially for carpets. It agitates the carpet pile and digs up all the dust, fluff, and pet hair buried deep down the pile. 

If you have pets in your house, your Roomba is up for a busy cleaning schedule every day. The pet hair clogs the brush very quickly. Cleaning the brush becomes essential even within a week. While cleaning the brush, the bristles always tend to tear away. This makes the brush lose its grip and power with time. This is the reason you might have to replace the brush even within 6 months of use. 

As you might know, Robotic vacuum cleaners have less suction power as compared to other traditional upright or canister vacuums. Sucking up loose dust and debris requires less suction power. So, the main work is required by the brush, especially on carpets. If the brush is in good shape, it will agitate the carpet pile properly and dig up all the dust and hair even from the bottom of the pile. This makes it easier for Roomba to do its job.

Battery

Ideally, you should replace Roomba batteries within 1.5 to 2 years. This timespan depends largely on how well you maintain it. As discussed above, keeping your Roomba brush and bearings clean from dust, pet hair and other debris will not only make the Roomba battery live longer but will also give you extended cleaning sessions per charge. 

If you let pet hair clog the brush and if your pet is fond of enjoying a Roomba ride, expect your Roomba battery to die out even within one year. 

Once you realize that the battery is dying out, not holding enough charge, or taking more time to get completely charged, you should not wait for it to die completely. Replace Roomba batteries as soon as you notice less performance. Running a Roomba on a worn-out battery deteriorates its overall performance and health. Replacing the battery on time will keep the motor performance at par. 

If you don’t keep up with the maintenance work, don’t expect batteries to go longer than 6 months. 

Filters

old and new roomba brush and filters

Filters need to be cleaned depending on the amount of dust your Roomba picks. Ideally, you should clean filters after every use. This not only prolongs its life but is also helpful if you have allergic issues. 

Most filters are washable. Just take them out. Tap them to remove loose dust. Then wash the filter properly. Be sure to dry the filters completely before reinstalling them into a Roomba vacuum cleaner. 

you might have to replace filters after 6 months if taken care of properly. if you or any of your family members have allergic problems, it is better to replace filters every 3 months. 

Sensor

Sensors are the eyes of a Roomba or any robot for that matter. Roomba sees through sensors and avoids obstacles, stairs, and edges. If sensors are working properly, Roomba will avoid most of the obstacles and find its way. Sometimes sensors can also get damaged or don’t work properly. This can be noticed if your Roomba is bumping into furniture or obstacles that it otherwise could avoid. This is the time when you need to replace the sensors. 

How long do Roomba batteries last?

Older versions of Roomba consisted of NiMH (Nickle Metal Hydride) batteries while newer versions of Roomba have Lithium-Ion batteries installed in them. 

Roomba batteries, and all other lithium-ion batteries for that matter, deplete when used. Whenever the batteries are used, their inner material starts to crystallize, reducing the amount of material used to hold the charge. This is called sulfation. When the battery remains uncharged for a longer time period, these crystals start to deposit on negative plates. This further reduces the life of the battery. 

Roomba battery, once fully charged, gives around 1.5 to 2 hours of the cleaning session. If you have a larger cleaning area and the battery power gets low, Roomba will return to its dock, will charge itself, and will return to cleaning chores from where it left. 

Roomba batteries, if taken good care of, can work well for 1.5 to 2 years depending on usage and maintenance. Batteries should be replaced as soon as you notice issues in performance. 

How to make Roomba batteries last longer?

You should take the following steps to make your Roomba battery last longer.

1. Use Roomba frequently

Electronic batteries, whether NiMH or Li-ion batteries, stay in great health when they are used on regular basis. So, Roomba should be used frequently to keep its battery fresh and lively. 

2. Keep it completely charged

The roomba battery should be completely charged before using it. Keeping it plugged in while not in use is a good practice. However, you should avoid keeping it docked for multiple days without using it. This will cause overheating and will damage the battery. 

3. Discharge the battery completely

Roomba battery should be discharged completely before putting it back on the dock to recharge. This is called the charge/recharge cycle. Batteries should be completely charged and completely discharged to keep them in good health. If your Roomba battery still has charge in it while the cleaning session has ended, make it deplete its charging by wandering around. It will get back to its dock when its charging is about to end. 

4. Keep the Roomba clean

Dust is a fierce enemy of any electronic gadget. The same is true for the Roomba as well. If the dust, dirt, fluff, and hair strands are left stuck in the Roomba brush, wheels, and filters, your Roomba and its battery will die sooner. 

So, keeping your Roomba clean cannot be endorsed much. Keeping the brush, brush bearings, filters, motor and dirt bin clean will make your Roomba consume less battery power. Thus making your Roomba battery last longer. 

5. Keep the Dock and Connectors clean

As discussed above, keeping the dock and its connector clean will make charging better. If the connectors are dirty, Roomba will have issues charging the battery properly. 

6. Keep it in a cool and dry place

Keep your Roomba battery and the charging dock in a cool and dry place and avoid overheating. This is a general rule for almost all electronic items and their batteries. The reason is that the rays and heat emitted by the sun can damage electronic items and their batteries. The same is true for the Roombas and their batteries. 

So, be sure to avoid direct sunlight or any other type of heat, from other electronic devices as well. Also, keep the charging dock in a slightly open area for proper ventilation. 

7. Put on 'Vacation Mode' when Roomba is not in use

If your Roomba has NiMH batteries, most of the older versions have NiMH batteries, and you are going on vacation and your Roomba won’t be working for several weeks, you should fully charge the NiMH battery and then remove it and store it in a cool dry place. Once you are back and want to use your Roomba again, insert the NiMH battery and first fully charge it before using it. NiMH batteries deplete even when removed from the device. 

If your Roomba has a Lithium-Ion battery, most of the newer versions have Lithium-Ion batteries, you can keep it installed in the Roomba and store it in a cool and dry place. 

Confirm your Roomba model and battery type here

8. Only use iRobot batteries

You might find cheap batteries from third-party manufacturers in the market. But be aware, that these cheap batteries don’t have any warranty and they might damage the Roomba altogether. You should only use batteries manufactured by iRobot.