Pause for a second and try to imagine the outcome of a dusty floor that only gets mopped but not vacuumed… A shoddy cleaning job, huh? Well, that’s what you get with a robot mop WITHOUT the sweeping function or a sweeping robot WITHOUT the mopping function.
With a robot vacuum mop, however, seeing vacuuming and mopping happens simultaneously–and autonomously–floors stay fresher and cleaner. Not only that, but you’ll also save money: instead of buying two devices, you buy only one.
Top 3 Robot Vacuum Mop Combos
To keep things simple and straight to the point, only the vacuuming and mopping function of the listed items will be considered. There will however be links to a full review of each item. Also, only three products will feature alongside their best use cases within the context of mopping and vacuuming. This should help clear any confusion and hopefully leads to a quick and informed purchasing decision. With that mentioned, here are three of the best robot vacuum mop hybrid to buy in 2021.
Roborock S7 vacuuming & mopping robot
The Roborock S7 occupies the top spot in this list simply because it offers the best of both worlds than any other robot currently in the market. For a bit of context, the Narwal T10 which came close enough in terms of providing some sort of agitation on floors, however, lacks the auto-dumping and auto-mop lifting features of the Roborock S7.
Talking of the vacuuming base of the S7 which is available as an add-on, this is a device that allows the robot to empty its small onboard dustbin while resuming cleaning missions automatically.
Since the base of the S7 applies to vacuuming situations, let me quickly mention that actual vacuuming on the S7 is topnotch. There are normal and power cleaning modes. Plus, in the video below (starts from 1.09), the S7 scored 80% on the carpet pick-up test. Debris pick up on hard surfaces isn’t bad either:
Moving on, and given its all-rubber design similar to the Roombas, the S7 does better resisting hair and keeping upkeep fairly simple. Its adjustable wheels and uniquely designed brush housing also allows the S7 better grip on multiple flooring including but not limited to hardwood, tile, and linoleum.
As for the mopping of the S7, there’s a 300ml water tank (electronic) that ensures water efficiency and prolonged cleaning. Talking about actual mopping, thanks to its sonic technology, the S7 can remove tough stains like tomatoes and grape juice.
Not done, the S7 has the intelligent mop lifting feature which is code-named VibraRise. This ensures less interaction with the S7 since it can go over carpets up to 5mm tall without soaking them.
Keep the following in mind about the Roborock S7.
- The Roborock S7 doesn’t self-clean or air dry its mopping pad. It doesn’t separate clean and dirty water or support the use of cleaning detergents. Check out the Narwhal (#2 on the list) if you want these features.
- The Roborock S7 vacuums and mops simultaneously. Check out the Narwhal (#2 on the list) if you want a bot that does this asynchronously.
- The S7 doesn’t come with spare accessories.
Continue reading: Roborock S7 robotic vacuum and mop cleaner review (includes details on its mobility and obstacle avoidance in addition to a complete list of pros and cons)
While pricey (typically about $800 with the auto empty station) but regardless of its limitations, the S7 is worth it considering its advanced functions, raw cleaning ability, and usability. Consider the Roborock S7 if you…
- Want to tackle dried liquid stains and pet print
- Hate streaks
- Have hard floors (hardwoods, tiles, laminates, stone, etc.) with a mix of area rugs or large carpeted areas
- Have pets that shed
- Don’t plan to run completely unattended
Narwal T10 self-cleaning floor robot
Featuring #2 on this list of the best robot vacuum mop combo is the Narwal T10. This is the one to get if mopping dominates your cleaning needs. The washing base for a bit of context holds 5 liters of water; separates clean and dirty water; supports the use of detergents which helps to reduce odor; and autonomously clean its mop pads, and when done, air dries them. Given those highlights, it isn’t surprising that the Narwal T10 mopped very well in various tests, including this one from Nathan of Robot Masters (starts from 10:39):
Concerning its vacuuming ability, performance on hard floors is pretty solid. The T10 may not be ideal if you have full-length carpets as there’s no brush/extractor to provide agitation. Also, there’s no carpet sensor or anything like the mop lifting mechanism of the S7. What’s more, given its lack of an app-based room divider function and the small dustbin (w/o the auto-empty function) the Narwal T10 may not be suitable for busy homes with kids but should be more than enough for an apartment. That, and considering the suction inlet design (that replaces the roller bar commonly found in most models), the T10 is the one to get if you have long hair or one or two pets that shed and can commit to emptying out the dustbin.
It’s worth mentioning that the T10 doesn’t support multi-level mapping. Using boundary strips is the only way to keep off unwanted areas. It’s also very expensive. Regardless of its limitations (and it should be clear by now that the T10 strength is on the mopping side), it’s the most advanced hybrid model in the market right now. The Narwal T10 floor vac is therefore the perfect choice if you’re struggling to keep up with pet hair or dust in an expansive space and as such looking for a hands-off solution. Also if you don’t mind splurging if it means saved time, perpetually clean floors, and improved cleaning experience.
Roborock E4 2-in-1 cleaning robot
Appearing #3 and to conclude this list of the best robot vacuum combo is the Roborock E4. Understand with this one it’s just a water tank (180ml, manually fed, which means no water efficiency) with a pad that dampens and drags across the floor. You’ll be looking at the wrong item if you want thoroughness or convenience or have an expansive mopping area (anything above 800ft²). You want to check out the S7 or T10 (1 & 2 respectively on the list) if that’s the case. If you live in an apartment though with primarily tiles, hardwood, laminate, etc. and fewer obstacles, the E4 is a good navigator, cleans well for a robot in its price point (typically selling under $300), with just the right controls and settings needed to achieve clean floors on an ongoing basis.
Continue reading: Roborock E4 robotic vacuum and mop cleaner review (includes details on its mobility in addition to a complete list of pros and cons)
Five things to look for when buying a vacuuming and mopping robot
- If you have rugs, a 2-in-1 robot with the Carpet Boost function makes sense. All three items reviewed have this function.
- If you have pets or live with people who have long hair, get a robot with a rubber or brushless extractor.
- If you have a mix of carpet and hard floors, look for a robot vacuum mop with carpet recognition and avoidance abilities. Whether combined with the Carpet Boost function (as is the case with Ecovacs robots) or available through virtual boundary settings in the app (as is the case with Roborock robots), all featured items have this function.
- Furthermore, a large water tank (bonus point if it’s electronic) makes perfect sense since you get longer working hours (very helpful if you have a huge space) and more intensive mopping.
- Mapping is one last feature I can’t recommend enough. This feature gives your robot a kind of its mind and brain. Floor mapping powers the intelligent navigation of a robot, to include other functions such as room and zone cleaning, and custom blockages. All five featured items have this function.
Robot vacuum vs. robot mop vs. robot vacuum mop
Dust, dirt, pet hair, human hair on carpets and hard floors are better served to robot vacuums given their hardware (side and center brushes) and working methodology. Robot vacuums in the entry through intermediate levels (starting at around $200) might just as well suffice. The more advanced option with mapping and auto-dirt emptying such as the Roomba i7+ & s9+, Shark IQ, Proscenic m7 Pro, or the just-released Ozmo t8–typically priced $500 and above–are a lifesaver if you’ve got complicated floor plans or own a German Shepherd, Lab or other dog breeds that shed a lot.
A dedicated mopping robot is in order if the cleaning requirements involve getting rid of wet dog prints or stubborn stains and grime on tiles, laminates, or hardwood floors. Braava 240, 380t, iLife w400, typically priced under $400, is an excellent place to start. Still, there’s the smarter, advanced, and powerful Braava Jet m6, priced around $500, that takes a back and forth approach to mopping, a nice attempt at duplicating the vibrating brush mop head of the Ozmo t8.
Finally, a robot vacuum mop–available as a combo (s5 Max, s6 MaxV, Ozmo t8, etc.) or dynamic duos (Roomba i7+ and Braava Jet m6 or Roborock s4 + Braava Jet m6)–is ideal in a situation where the cleaning need involves sweeping and wiping (dust, dirt, stains; not water puddles or pet urine). Dedicated robot vacuum and mops AREN’T cheap, though (could cost more than a thousand dollars).
How does a 2-in-1 floor robot work?
Most hybrid robots vacuum and mop simultaneously. Their vacuum/main brush is in front; that way, the floor is vacuumed before being mopped. Mopping floors with area rugs here and there presents a problem as the machine will run the wet mop pad over the rugs the same way it runs over floors. For units that don’t have carpet recognition, there’s an option to block off carpeted or problematic areas in the app. Mopping is turned on by default once the robot detects a filled water tank and cloth, and deactivated when removed.
To (or not to) use Bona or other third-party cleaners with the mop feature?
Except for when the device in question is the Jet m6, which uses a proprietary, expensive cleaning liquid. Other manufacturers advised using only water. With or without a vibrating mop head, most floor robots and mops clean well with just water.
Are you still wondering about the advantage of buying a robotic that is both vacuum and mop?
A robot vacuum mop combo or dedicated robot vacuum and mop does two things you don’t have to do: vacuum and mop. Plus, it and does that while saving you the money you’d have splashed on two devices that don’t perform significantly better.
Floor robot technology is rapidly improving. The mopping feature, for now, can be best compared to a damp rag being wiped along the floor. It’ll grab the fine dust and maybe some larger shoe/paw prints; if you do a zone clean up and do 3X times, it cleans as good as your steam mop. However, any refunds or rejections from a cat should be manually cleaned up.
It helps if mopping is done every day so that there isn’t much build-up of dirt. The more you use the mop feature, the least dirt you’d be washing out of the pad.
It’s OK to use the washing machine to wash the mopping cloth with warm water and cleaner. Just don’t make cloth too crinkled. Otherwise, it will affect the mopping performance.
You also wouldn’t want to leave the mop head on for more than a day, or it may start to get stinky. The app reminds you to remove the mop head after use.
Lastly, identify your cleaning requirements and seek out from the featured items that one robot to match. Pay attention to the associated cleaning situations and the buying guide section.