10 Worst Robot Vacuums to Avoid in 2019

Sam Harris
written by Sam Harris
part of Robot Vacuums
created on October 18, 2019
updated on November 23, 2019

Do you want to avoid wasting money and time on expensive cleaning robots you can’t use, return, or get support for? The answer to this question is to patronize ONLY products in the best category.
Without further ado, here’s a list of ten of the worst robot vacuums you shouldn’t buy, including reasons to avoid them plus suitable alternatives in the best category.

Which are the worst robotic vacuum cleaners to avoid in 2019?

Of course, not a list comprehensive list, but here are ten robot vacuums I wouldn’t buy/recommend in 2019.

  1. Premium Automatic Robot Vacuum Cleaner
  2. Fmart Robot Vacuum Cleaner
  3. Tesvor Robot Vacuum Cleaner
  4. Denkee 1500pa Robot Vacuum
  5. Aiper Robot Vacuum
  6. Excelvan 1600pa Robot Vacuum
  7. Icoco Robot Vacuum
  8. Amarey 1400pa Robot Vacuum
  9. Coredy 1400 Robot Vacuum Cleaner
  10. Baulia Automatic Robot Cleaner

What are the general characteristics of the worst robot vacuums?

This section is where I’ll be discussing the factors I put into consideration when listing some products under the worst category.

Inferior build quality

My experience with a few of the items in the above list is that they perform to expectations…maybe for the first few months. That is until the app starts acting up, charger/remote breaks, the device won’t power on, no longer hold a charge, return to base, or suck debris in.

To check whether a robot vacuum has quality issues, on the product page, click on the 1-star reviews. If the majority of reviews suggest anything along the lines of piece of trash, crap, breaks after six months… Well, there you go.

Inefficient cleaning capability

In addition to the transitioning, pet hair, and multi-floor cleaning disabilities of robot vacuums in the not-recommended category, you want to also pay attention to navigation (random & aggressive), noise level, and run time.

To check whether a robot vacuum you’re about to buy may have a deficiency in cleaning, on the product page, engage the search box. On Amazon it looks something like this:

 

As you’d soon see, when I typed the word random into the search box (I’m on the product page of the Premium Automatic Robot Vacuum Cleaner) it displays all mentions of the word random as found in the product information, customer questions & answers, and customer reviews:

 

Needless to mention that you may as well use the above method to understand the quality of a product or the commitment or lack thereof of a manufacturer to their product. In which case, you’d be searching for words like quality, support, phone/contact number, return, email.

Side note: make sure you understand the limitations of the product under consideration in order not to confuse this for defects. Some products can handle hard floors but will struggle with carpets or rugs, for instance. Also, some products are better equipped with the capabilities to clean systematically while being able to handle larger floor areas. You may want to check out this post update for product recommendations that are ideal for specific purposes/situations.

Decreased automation

It can be inferred from the preceding subheading that robot vacuums in the worst category are limited in features. This may or may not be connected to their cleaning inefficiency.

On top of their cleaning inefficiency, the worst robot vacuums are also lacking in other aspects, one of which is intelligent navigation.

Granted other features such as the auto-resume, auto-empty, room cleaning, no-go lines, and 2-in-1 aren’t a fair basis of comparison. I should mention regardless, that robotic vacuum cleaners in the example of the Roomba i7+ and s9+; Naeto d7; Shark iq r101ae; Roborock s4, s5, and s6; and Ozmo 920, 930 & 950 –of course robot vacuums in the best category–have this very HELPFUL features.

High maintenance work

Agreed parts are cheaply made. The overall design is another case study. The premium automatic vacuum cleaner, for instance, has a tiny hole on the bottom. I mean, this was intended to substitute the rollers found in other popular models.

Ordinarily, this shouldn’t have been an issue had it been the tiny hole serves the intended purpose. But as you can probably guess, it DIDN’T. As a result, taking the unit apart is common sense.

Take note, however, that this task is in addition to the routine maintenance work required on parts such as the filter, dirt container, etc.

And for carpets/rugs, if you’re lucky not to have these chewed up, then maybe you won’t escape having to hand-vacuum what it just missed/vacuumed.

Increased cost of ownership

Robotic vacuums in the worst category could create noticeable scratches that may be costly to fix. This, for the most part, could be as a result of the design/construction of the device’s wheel that allows tracked in rocks to slip through, hence the scratch.

And still on their design/construction flaws. Earlier I mentioned the cheapness of the parts of items in the not-recommended category. Simply, what that means is, parts switching at first may not seem like a lot… …until it becomes a routine.

Unresponsive/non-existing customer service

As against the kind of support you’d get and the options available with brands like iRobot, Naeto, and Ecovacs. Don’t expect the same from a certain Coredy, Icoco, or even Tesvor.
Understandably a handful of brands in the worst category honor refunds, and maybe a few others follow up with support tickets.

Another twist is that most times, support channels listed in the manual or package may not exist, or could be limited.

On those rare occasions when someone responds from the manufacturer’s end, my experience is that they aren’t helpful. Sometimes I get ghosted on. Other times I could be promised parts that never arrived.

Unpleasant user experience

It’s common practice to try to troubleshoot a malfunctioning device. But here’s the problem with products in the not-recommended category: the manual clearly isn’t written by a Native English person; meaning you may have a hard time following the instructions. On top of their manuals written in impossible-to-follow English, maybe you too have owned one of those units whose parts were misspelled/mislabeled?

Limited availability/unavailability of replacement parts

Earlier I briefly touched on the quality of products in the worst category. Regardless of that information, it’s typical to switch the components of a self vacuum maybe a couple of times in-between an extended period of vacuuming.
The exception, however, is in getting the replacement parts for items in the unfavorable category, which isn’t something cheap, straightforward, or readily available. The unaffordability/unavailability of parts is often traceable to their exclusivity to a few selected sellers, in addition to the unpopularity of items in this vertical.

Limited opportunities for repairs/unavailability of expert repairers

If you missed your return window or for some reason, can’t get through to support or get your issues resolved. With tossing being an option, I’ve seen Roomba users get some persons to repair their devices. Keep in mind that iRobot is an over two decades brand with dozens of models to their name–a level brands in the worst category can only currently admire.

Why avoid any of these worst cleaning robots?

Automatic vacuums in the worst category disappoint for a living. Or if you’d understand it this way: they’re much more trouble than you need or can cope with. Below are valid reasons why you should avoid them.

Save time & effort

Except for the Shark IQ R101AE and the Roombas i7+ and s9+, there are (currently) no other robot cleaners that self empties. And although not exclusive to items in the worst category. Regardless, that’s several emptying in between cleaning sessions.

Additionally and considering all listed items have primary navigation, they get stuck and therefore have difficulty completing cleaning jobs. Also, the majority of these products tend to struggle with carpets, rugs, long dog, and human hair.

You then want to ask the purpose of having a cleaning robot if you’ll have to take care and lead it invariably.

Long story short, robot vacuums in the worst category aren’t for you if what you’re looking for is a robotic vacuum that will not require constant attention/monitoring.

Save money

There are people for whom the upright vacuum isn’t an option. If you’re one of these people, or maybe, in addition, hiring professional cleaning services isn’t your thing, a robot cleaner that died on you simply means a replacement is underway.

I should mention that the ordered replacement unit is at a price. While this additional expense is AVOIDABLE, and though my opinion–but I’ve found robot vacuums that are worth it (in terms of usability, build quality, and performance) to cost nothing less than $300.

Keep your sanity

It’s easy to get frustrated with items in the worst category. One time the app isn’t connecting to the phone, which takes out the option of controlling the vacuum. Some other times there are no provisions to prevent entry into unsafe areas, so your best bet would be to lay a piece of lumber across doorways before starting it or risk having the unit beach on cables or kids’ toys then halt cleaning. What about when the device is right by its charging station but won’t find it–so that, again, you’ve got to have to do this manually and repeatedly?

Which are the best self vacuuming robots?

In other to stick to the core of today’s update, follow this link, it leads directly to a page where you can find the best self vacuuming robots based on your needs, lifestyle, budget, and choice.

What are the general characteristics of the best robot vacuums?

Cleaning robots in the best category have attributes to include:

  • Incredible build quality;
  • Increased automation;
  • Low-level of maintenance;
  • Decreased cost of ownership;
  • User-friendliness;
  • Superior cleaning power;
  • Availability and affordability of replacement parts;
  • Dedicated and responsive customer service channels;
  • Plenty of opportunities for repairs/availability of expert repairers.

Final thought

Having noticed the misleading and tempting reviews in addition to the irresistible pricing, I felt the need to release this update.

While my list of the worst robot vacuums isn’t exhaustive as earlier mentioned, if you actually paid attention to the characteristics of robot vacuums in the worst category, you’d notice some trends and be better able to understand why they’re so categorized.

Also from the post and having done justice to robot vacuums in the worst category (including why they aren’t a recommended choice), there were helpful links to robot vacuums in the best category (including reasons products in this category are a better choice).

Further reading

Want to share your experience with a disappointing autonomous robotic vacuum cleaner?

Do you know of a robot vacuum that didn’t make my list or one that did, but shouldn’t? Share them alongside your reasons in the comment box. I’d also love to read about your funny/unpleasant experiences with a robot vacuum.

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