Today’s update is about the least-priced reputable robotic vacuum cleaners that offer just enough vacuuming power to maintain clean floors.
Ten items will feature, each of which will be linked to specific situations/use cases–such as the best budget model for pets, best for under $300, best cheap robovac with mapping, etc.
Without further ado, here are ten of the best affordable robot vacuums to buy.
best robot vacuum under $500: Proscenic m7 Pro
Are you wondering why the Proscenic m7 Pro is the best robot vacuum under $500?
That’s because it’s what the Roomba i7+ and the Ozmo t8+ are (a fully automatic cleaner), and are doing (intensive, intentional cleaning), BUT for $300 less.
Therefore the Proscenic m7 Pro is worth checking out if you don’t plan to or can’t afford to spend more than $500 to get full automation from a cleaning bot.
best robot vacuum under $400: Roborock s6
The next item to feature on this list of the best affordable robotic vacuums, particularly for models that are selling for $400 or less, is the Roborock s6 smart vacuum which so far has demonstrated consistency, not only in pricing but also performance.
Perhaps one way to get a sense of its offerings is to think about the Roborock s6 as the Proscenic m7 Pro without the automatic dirt disposal bin.
For a bit more context, Roborock s6 automatic vac cleans hard floors and carpets in straight efficient lines as such there are fewer jamming problems or human intervention.
Further, the Roborock s6 smart home cleaner can run up to three hours on low power and would return to its charging station when and where necessary, boost up, and automatically return to pick up where it left off.
And as a multi-level homeowner, you can take advantage of the s6’s multi-floor mapping function. Or, if there’s a place you don’t want the s6 in, like your pet’s area, you can block off such through the app. It’s also possible to select certain spots or rooms within the house (like your kitchen, entryway, or dining area) for cleaning.
Considering its potentials as briefly discussed above, get the Roborock s6 robovac if you’re interested in buying a smart, powerful, and functional automatic cleaning tool but don’t plan or have more than $400 to spare.
best robot vacuum under 300: Neato botvac d4
Talking of a few robotic vacuums within $201 and $299 that are actually worth it, the Neato botvac d4 is a hard one to ignore.
Think of the Neato d3 smart vacuum as a D-shaped Roborock s6.
While parading all the good things you know and like about the s6, including but not limited to topnotch navigation, intelligence, and cleaning power–the center brush of the Neato is wider and front-loaded, which allows cleaning to be done with fewer passes. Plus, this design of the Neato’s brush allows it to get closer to corners and walls where a lot of the debris is usually hiding.
Not only that, the dustbin on the Neato botvac d4 is larger (700ml) and ensures prolonged cleaning while helping to reduce the hassle and frequency of emptying.
Neato d4 unlike the s6 has limited functionalities. As a result, the Neato d4 may not be ideal if you live in a huge/split level house and want the freedom to select rooms or zones for cleaning.
Regardless, the Neato d4 makes perfect sense if you live in a single-level home or apartment, want a bot that cleans systematically, prefer the in-app barriers to the unsightly magnetic stripes–and if, for all of these, don’t plan to part with more than $300.
best robot vacuum under $200: Eufy 11s/ Deebot n79s
Up until now, one item had featured per listing but here’s the Eufy 11s and the Ecovacs n79s featuring alongside each other in the under $200 budget category.
Assuming the multi-scheduling and voice compatibility functions of the Ecovacs isn’t a thing (but guess it is, at least for some homeowners, which explains its addition), the Eufy 11s robotic cleaner is overall a better choice given
- Its strong suction of 1300Pa ideal for effective pickup performance;
- Its low-profile height of 2.85″ that improves reach;
- Its low noise that doesn’t interrupt sleep or conversations;
- Its long-lasting battery for prolonged, uninterrupted cleaning; and
- A much gentler approach to cleaning (navigation still random, however).
Comparable in cleaning ability EXCEPT they’re lacking the intelligence and efficiency of the advanced models–making them potentially more demanding.
Deebot and Eufy if it helps to add a bit more context navigate around by bumping into objects WITHOUT the ability to map or save floor plans, automatically resume cleaning missions, or execute custom vacuuming.
While ramming into baseboards, getting stuck, prompting multiple emptying routines are activities that can’t be completely avoided especially for items in the $151 – $199 category, being able to reduce the probability of this happening all the time is very much a BIG relief. That is if you buy the Eufy 11s which in my opinion is a stable, solid, and more refined model with readily available and affordable parts.
If you insist on staying within the $200 price mark and want the ability to set up on Alexa or Google while running multiple daily scheduling (these functions aren’t available in the Eufy), then by all means check out the Ecovacs n79s robotic cleaner.
best robot vacuum under $150: Goovi (d380/d382)
Truth is, it’s kinda difficult to find a robovac within the $101 – $149 price range that’ll actually be worth the money. This is why the offerings of the Goovi robotic vacuum cleaner (d380 is the model with a remote while the d382 has a remote plus an app) relative to its price sounds too good to be true.
To avoid needless repetition since it shares similarities in prospects and limitations, think of the Goovi as a cheaper Eufy 11s or Ecovacs n79s.
Keep in mind Goovi isn’t as popular a brand as the Eufy or Deebot. This usually means parts and customer support may not be readily available. Thankfully, Goovi has got solid hardware and works reliably well for an item in its budget category, as such messaging support or scouting parts are things you may not have to deal with, or that Goovi can simply improve upon.
best cheap robot vacuum for pets: iLife v3s Pro/Roomba i3(+)/Roomba i7(+)
Here’s another multiple listing as in the Eufy 11s & Deebot n79s scenario except for this time it’s the iLife v3s Pro and Roomba i3+ & i7+ (‘+’ sign indicating the model that includes the automatic dirt disposal system).
Each one of these cleaning tools varies in pricing and addresses different pet hair vacuuming needs and users, so pay attention from here onward.
So there’s the iLife v3s Pro that doesn’t tangle hair thanks to the absence of a center brush (it has a suction port instead). While the time, energy, and money that would’ve gone into maintenance are being saved, be informed there won’t be agitation on carpet but you should do just fine if you have mostly hard floors, low-shedding dog or cat (dustbin is only 300ml with no option to add the emptying tower), or if you can commit to regular vacuuming so that the hair won’t have a chance.
Moving on, if you own a Border Colie or Maine Coon with a mix of carpet and hardwood, tile or laminate floors, a robovac in the example of the Roomba i3 Plus that cleans methodically with its brushless design and Clean Base will most likely suffice.
Still talking about the best robot vacuums for pet hair, the Roomba i3 (+) just so you know doesn't save floor plans or allow room naming. You can't perform selective or restrictive cleaning or use invisible barriers, either.
If these functions are IMPORTANT to you, there's the Roomba i7+ which is essentially a Roomba i3 (+) with map editing and saving capability plus advanced controls and settings.
In terms of pricing, the information regarding the i3 applies: the i7 (+) is pricey at around $800 (current price).
Given the i3 and i7 prices, you may then be wondering if there aren't cheaper alternatives. Well, there are quite a few, like the Neabot Nomo, Proscenic m7 Pro, and Shark IQ...all self-emptying models. The only problem is these cheaper alternatives don't handle long, thick pet hair in the same way a Roomba does. Specifically, their rollers don't have detachable tips or a brushless design as is the case in the Roomba. Not only will this cause the center brush to wear easily, but routine maintenance will also increase.
Too long didn't read: While there are few less pricey options, the Roomba i-series are few of the best floor bots for pet hair vacuuming given their unique brush design and powerful suction.
best affordable robot vacuum and mop: 360 S7 Pro
Dust, wet dog paw prints, and hardwood floors aren't exactly a nice combo. This is why you'll be better off with a bot that can sweep and mop.
With quite a few deserving ones available including the s6 that was previously mentioned. The only problem is that they're usually priced out of most people's budget, typically selling around $500.
The good news is, for $200 less, there's a certain 360 S7 Pro with the same level of automation and cleaning power as the Roborock s5, s6, s5 max, or any of the other vacuuming and mopping robots you know. Or, in other words, for $300, you can own the 360 S7 Pro and enjoy systematic, intensive, and convenient vacuuming.
best cheap robot vacuum with mapping: 360 S5
Mapping if it helps for some background info is a robot vacuum's ability to gather real-time data about its vacuuming environment and then use that to plan cleaning and optimize its movement.
There are two types of mapping. There's pseudo-mapping and then there's full mapping. Pseudo-mapping is what is available in the likes of the Proscenic 850T, Roomba 900 series, and Roborock e4.
Because robot vacuums with Pseudo-mapping use sensors for floor tracking, floor maps aren't always available for customization or saving.
Devices with full mapping capability on the other hand use lasers, cameras, or both (as seen in the Roborock s6 maxv and Deebot Ozmo t8 aivi) for floor tracking as such rooms can be named, floor plans can be saved, plus it's possible to select rooms for cleaning or limit the activities of the bot.
From the foregoing, the full mapping function has an improved offer which explains why it's more desirable and pricier. The problem however is that there aren't many affordable floor robots that have this capability. Most are usually priced at $400 and up.
Lucky for you the 360 S5 has most of the advanced features available in the high-end models (including full-floor mapping) and works just as good, if not better. Better yet, the 360 S5 smart robotic cleaner is currently selling for less than $300 at Amazon.
best affordable robot vacuum for carpet: Roborock e4
And to conclude this list is the Roborock e4, my choice for the best affordable robot vacuum for carpets.
If you're wondering, yes, the Roborock e4 is less than $300 at Amazon and Best Buy.
Another piece of information that's correct about the e4 is that it cleans in straight lines, has tons of suction and airflow for deep cleaning low- and medium-pile carpets, with the ability to automatically recharge.
Understand, however, that the e4 can't automatically resume cleaning missions and doesn't generate or store floor plans. As such, boundary strips are your best option for keeping this bot off places you don't want it in. You also can't select rooms or zones for cleaning.
If those functions AREN'T as important to you, though, the Roborock e4 is a smart choice of a budget robot vacuum for your mixed or mostly carpeted home.
The thing with robot vacuums is that they're helpful but EXPENSIVE. It's for this reason I put together this list of the best budget robot vacuums to reveal some otherwise hidden gems in the robot vacuum market and to help someone make the right choice.
In listing the items, including but not limited to the Proscenic m7 Pro, Roborock s6, and 360 S7 Pro--the affordability part was clearly highlighted while being associated with relevant budget categories and specific vacuuming situations.
And it turns out that tech in a bot often influences pricing. Advanced features and tech could mean faster, convenient, or more efficient cleaning. Or it could complicate things, therefore, compromising functionalities.
The point is, some bells and whistles like the auto-clean station or the object recognition and avoidance feature can be skipped especially since prepping the floor is a standard for running a floor vac. More so if you live in a studio apartment with no pets.
Conversely, straight-line cleaning, automatic recharge and resume, and full-floor mapping are key features you don't want to sacrifice for cost-saving. Cleaning will be prolonged as a result. Not to mention you'll waste too much time babysitting which defeats the purpose of owning an automated device.
Lastly, while being careful of units that have had a big jump or drop in the past couple of years--pricing remains dynamic, so you want to keep that in mind as you proceed with making a purchase.
The ultimate list of the best smart vacuums for the money
Talking of robotic cleaners that are worth the money, here's a link to the full list. While the above article focused on price, the best robot vacuum for the money featured REASONABLY PRICED products that are SOLID PERFORMERS.