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roborock vs Roomba

Roomba vs Roborock: Pros, Cons, Features, Buying Guide

October 16, 2021 / 0 Comments

Our expert editors independently review, test, and recommend products to help you make an informed decision. We may earn commissions on purchases made from our product links.

Welcome to our Roborock Vs. Roomba review! We’ve had many robot vacuums fall into our hands over the past few years, but only a few brands made a strong impression. Two of those stand-out brands are definitely Roomba and Roborock.

When people try to decide which robot vacuum to buy, they usually read thousands of praising reviews about these two companies. But, how can you make the right decision and know which one will serve you better? All you need to do is read our review and get familiar with the significant pros, cons, and features of these two giants.

To make your next shopping spree a little easier, we also included the top three choices of each brand and a buying guide that rates the three most essential features. It’s time to dive in! 

iRobot

iRobot is one of the most popular robot vacuum brands in the world. It was founded in 1990 in Bedford, Massachusetts. Since 1990, iRobot has released a wide range of robots that come at different price points and pack various useful features. Below is the iRobot Roomba S9.

The iRobot Roomba lines you should know about include:

  • S Series
  • i Series
  • e Series
  • 600 Series
  • 800 Series

iRobot also produces robot mops under the Braava name. Unfortunately, none of the Roomba vacuums have a mopping feature, so if you’re ever interested in a mop from this brand, you’ll have to opt for a Braava.

Aside from robots, the company also has one handheld vacuum on their products list and parts and accessories for all their products.

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Roborock

Roborock is a fairly young brand founded in July 2014 in Beijing, China. Today, their headquarters is still located in Beijing, but they also have research and design facilities and branch offices in Shanghai and Shenzhen. Below is the Roborock S6 MaxV.

Although this is a young brand, they’ve developed some of the best-selling robots on the market. The fact that Roborock has already invested so much in creating products to make people’s lives easier is impressive.

The full range of Roborock products includes robot vacuums and cordless stick vacuums. Since we’ll be talking about robots today, we have to mention this brand divides its robot vacuums into two lines: S and E.

The S line is the more expensive one with multiple features, while the E line is more affordable and comes with simpler features. Here are the models that each line includes:

  • Roborock S7
  • Roborock S6 (S6 MaxV, S6 Pure, S6)
  • Roborock S5 Max
  • Roborock E35/E30
  • Roborock E25/E20

Roborock also had S5 and S4 lines, but they are now discontinued. 

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Roomba vs. Roborock: Pros & Cons

For you to get a general idea of what these two brands are good at and what they lack, we’ve put together a list of pros and cons for each. The Roomba i6+ is featured below.

Roomba 

Pros
  • In general, Roomba robots have a much higher suction power
  • High-end Roomba models come with a self-emptying option
  • Roomba robot vacuums show excellent performance on floors and carpets
  • These robots are amazing for households with pets 
Cons
  • Roomba robots can sometimes bump into furniture
  • Roomba robots don’t come with a mopping function, but the brand offers separate robots for this purpose
  • The price of Roomba robot vacuums is higher compared to Roborock

Roborock (S4 Max pictured below)

Pros
  • Roborock vacuums have a better navigation system
  • Roborock robot vacuums are more affordable than Roomba vacuums
  • Roborock’s vacuums come with vacuuming and mopping feature 
Cons
  • Roborock robots don’t have a self-emptying option
  • Roborock vacuums are great for hard floors but can struggle on carpets
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Features

Which robot should you choose, and how can you decide which one’s the best for you when there are so many to choose from? First, you should go over each feature we listed below and determine whether it will play an essential role in cleaning your household.

Next, make a list of the features that matter to you, and choose a model within your budget with as many of those features as possible.

After going over this part of the article, you’ll also find a section with the top three best vacuums from each brand, followed by a buyer’s guide with the most essential rating criteria according to our team.

Navigation

There is no doubt Roborock robot vacuums are superior when it comes to their navigation system. Everyone who’s ever had their products will tell you they don’t bump into furniture and walls as much as other vacuums. The reason why they’re so good at navigating is because of their unique LiDAR navigation system that can map your entire home and help the robot move effortlessly without bumping into everything on its way.

You may wonder why navigation is such a big deal. First of all, a robot should cover every area of your home without missing any spots. If the navigation is not on point, it can skip a few spots, and the entire cleaning process won’t be as successful.

The second reason why navigation matters is because of furniture and items that can get in their way. Hearing your vacuum bumping into furniture over and over again is  frustrating, as it can damage both the robot and your furniture.

Also, if your robot doesn’t scan an area properly, it can bump into smaller items, tip them over, and damage them. Imagine your favorite vase or lamp falling and breaking. Will you be able to forgive your robot?

Another way to look at things is to compare the types of algorithms that these two brands use for navigation. There are two types: the first one is called Simultaneous Localization and Mapping (SLAM), and the other one is called Visual Simultaneous Localization and Mapping (VSLAM). The first one relies on sensors, while the second one also uses a real-life camera.

Roomba employs the VSLAM method in their vacuums, while Roborock uses SLAM.

How well a robot navigates a space is important during the day but even more important at night. A lot of robots find it hard to move around your home once it gets dark. If they’re not equipped with a great navigation system, they can be less effective.

Roborock robots are slightly better when it comes to navigation because they use a laser and they don’t need light to find their way. Roomba vacuums need plenty of light to avoid bumping into walls and furniture.

Although Roborock is praised for its navigation system, Roomba is still better at avoiding cables. We noticed iRobot vacuums avoid cables with ease, while Roborock’s can sometimes get caught up on them or even tangled.

Price

In general, Roborock vacuums are more affordable than Roomba. Roomba is one of the first brands to specialize in robot vacuums and has some of the most expensive products on the market.

Although their prices are higher than the competition, Roomba is still one of the  most-trusted companies that people turn to when they need to purchase a robot vacuum. The reason behind this decision is because iRobot’s vacuums are high quality and easy to use with advanced functions, sleek designs, and high suction power.

Roborock is a much younger company that also invests in innovative technology; however, they still have to earn the trust of customers globally. Their products are slightly less expensive compared to iRobot’s.

So, it all depends on how much you want to spend on a robot. Things can be really confusing because if you opt for the cheapest Roomba, you’ll get a basic model, and for that same amount, you can get a Roborock vacuum with much better features. But is this the right choice for you?

Before you decide, you should read more about all the features these two brands offer to help you make a much more informed decision.

Some people simply don’t want to spend a fortune on a robot vacuum because they won’t be using it very often. Others are ready to pay just to have the best model on the market. It’s a good idea to establish a budget upfront so you’ll know which options fall into your category.

Suction Power

Roomba is a leader in the field of robot vacuums because of its powerful performance. When a vacuum created by iRobot cleans your floors and carpets, you know that it will get even the tiniest particles.

It’s hard to compare the actual suction power of each model from the two brands because they have a diverse range of robot vacuums. The main thing we should talk about is how well these two brands clean floors and carpets.

Roomba is excellent at removing everything and anything off the floors and carpets. It can surprisingly get to the deepest parts of the carpets and even tackle the most stubborn pet hair and dander.

Although some Roborock models have a higher suction power than Roomba, their cleaning efficiency is slightly worse.

Smart Features

Both robots use smart apps to make your life easier. The two apps are very straightforward to use, and the robot vacuums can also be connected to smart home devices such as Google Home, Amazon Alexa, and Apple HomeKit.

These two apps will help you navigate the robot, set schedules, and control it even when you’re not at home. In addition, all Roomba and Roborock vacuums allow you to schedule cleanings via the apps, and almost all will allow you to set maintenance alerts.

However, only the more expensive ones will allow you to choose zoned cleaning and map the floor digitally.

Mop Feature

Not all robot vacuums offer a mopping feature. Roborock products do, and that’s why a lot of people are interested in their designs right away. If you don’t want to invest in two separate robot machines for your hard floors, one to vacuum and one to mop, you should opt for a Roborock robot.

How can a single robot do two things? Well, Roborock vacuums also have a water reservoir and a microfiber cloth. So, while the robot is moving, it sprays water on your floors, and the microfiber pad cleans the floors.

iRobot, on the other hand, has two lines of products. Roomba is their line of robot vacuums, while Braava is their line of robot mops. If you want to be able to mop and vacuum your floors with an iRobot product, you’ll have to invest in two different robots.

However, the truth is that these two separate Roomba robots will do a much better job cleaning your home overall than one Roborock robot that combines both features.

Roomba vacuums might not have a robot that mops and vacuums, but iRobot created an Imprint Link technology that helps users sync their robot vacuum and robot mop. This means once your vacuum is done with its job, the mop will take over.

In the end, it’s up to you to decide whether or not mopping is an essential feature in your household. In our opinion, finding a high-quality vacuum is much more important than mopping. Although many 2-in-1 products do a great job, it’s still better to focus on one that’s meant for a single purpose.

Before we wrap this feature’s section up, we wanted to mention that all Roborock robots have a mopping feature except the Roborock S4. Mopping is an excellent feature for cleaning your tile or hardwood floors, but it won’t ever be as good as when you do it yourself.

Self-Emptying Feature

In this category, Roomba is an absolute winner. Some of iRobot’s high-end vacuums come with a self-emptying feature. In other words, the Roomba goes to its dock once it’s full and empties itself into a bag located in the dock. The robot will also go to its dock if it happens to be nearby; it doesn’t necessarily have to be full.

Each bag can gather up to 30 cleanings, which means you won’t have to empty the bin for at least a month, even if you’re vacuuming every day. However, since most people use it less frequently, a single bag will probably last you much longer.

Thanks to this feature, you can avoid emptying the bin after every single use. That’s why it’s perfect for everyone who hates how messy emptying a vacuum is and wants a more hygienic approach.

On the other hand, you have to purchase bags for the bin. Each time one is full, you have to throw it in the trash and use a new one. It’s not the most eco-friendly approach, and people who want to live more sustainably might wish to avoid self-emptying designs.

Roborock robot vacuums don’t have this feature. This means it’s recommended to empty their dustbin after every session. You have to be careful when emptying in the trash because the dirt from the vacuum won’t be in a bag; it will only be in a canister. Since you don’t want to get dust and debris all over your floor again, you’ll need to be more cautious.

If you use a self-emptying robot, the chances of a spill are much lower. You have a bag in the canister that you only need to take out and throw in the trash.

In general, auto-emptying robot vacuums are much easier to use. The only downside of these models is you’ll have to purchase bags and add a new one when the previous bag is full.

The Roomba robots are ideal for people who want to avoid emptying a canister and want the most hygienic solution. On the other hand, Roborock robots are a better solution for people who want an environmentally friendly solution.

Filtration System

Roomba’s filtration system is a powerful one, with the ability to trap 99% of the particles around your home. Roborock, on the other hand, captures around 95% of the particles.

If you have a person in your family that struggles with allergies, there’s no doubt you should opt for a Roomba robot vacuum. Roomba uses AeroForce filters, while Roborock uses E11 grade filters.

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Top 3 Products

Choosing the top three products for each brand wasn’t easy. Since we’ve already tried most of Roborock’s and Roomba’s vacuums, we had a lot to consider before listing the best of the best. Our goal was to find great low-range, mid-range, and high-range products.

The robots you’ll see below fall into the three categories, starting from high-end to low-end. This helps us be sure that everyone finds what they’re looking for, depending on their budget.

Roomba

  1. iRobot Roomba s9+User Manual
  2. iRobot Roomba i6+User Manual
  3. iRobot Roomba 675 Robot VacuumUser Manual

iRobot’s customer service number is 1 (800) 727-9077.

Roborock

  1. Roborock S6 MaxV Robot Vacuum CleanerUser Manual
  2. Roborock S4 Max Robot VacuumUser Manual
  3. Roborock E4 and Mop Robot VacuumUser Manual

Roborock’s customer service number is 1-855-960-4321.

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Our Winner

Which is the winner in the Roomba Vs. Roborock battle? Did we find it easy to choose a better brand? To be honest, this wasn’t an easy choice.

It took us quite a while to go over all their features, compare them, and even get in touch with customers to get their honest feedback. Finally, after spending months on this review, we can share our winner.

According to our team, Roomba robot vacuums are a better option because of their impressive suction power, excellent filtration system, smart features, self-emptying dustbin, and gorgeous design. If you’re looking for the best overall option, you should opt for a Roomba vacuum.

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Rating Criteria

It’s time to go over the three most important factors that helped us make the final decision:

  • Suction Power
  • Navigation
  • Filtration System
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Buying Guide & Reviews

Next, we’ll share which brand is the winner in each of our rating criteria and why these categories are so important when choosing a robot vacuum.

Suction Power

Our team believes one of the most essential features to look for in a robot vacuum is strong suction power. The better the suction is, the cleaner your carpets and floors will be. The absolute winner in this category is Roomba.

These vacuums are known for their ability to clean even the deepest dirt to perfection. Not all Roomba robots have a higher suction power than Roborock, but they still do better overall at getting dirt, dust, and other debris out of carpets and floors.

Roomba vacuums are perfect for deep cleaning purposes, although the primary goal of a robot is not deep cleaning. They also showed impressive skills at removing pet hair and trapping even the tiniest dust particles. So, if you want a robot that will really leave your home sparkling clean, our recommendation is Roomba.

Navigation

This is a category where Roborock takes the lead. Their navigation system is superb and helps their robots move through space without bumping into walls and furniture or tipping objects over. Their navigation system uses lasers, and that’s why it’s so efficient both during the day and at night.

Roomba, on the other hand, is much better at avoiding cables. Of course, this feature alone doesn’t make the brand better than Roborock in this category, and we hope the brand will improve the navigation of their robots in the future.

Filtration System

Roomba is undefeated when it comes to its filtration system. iRobot’s vacuums have the ability to capture even the tiniest particles and filter 99% of dirt, dust, and debris. Roborock is far less powerful when it comes to filtration, and its robots can filter up to 95% of the particles.

Choosing a high-quality filtration system might not be your first priority, but it should be in the top three. This is a vital feature for households with kids and pets because it can prevent allergic reactions and capture allergens before they become an issue.

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FAQ

Is Roborock better than Roomba?

Both Roborock and Roomba are quality machines in their own right, but Roomba technology generally has stronger performance when it comes to suction and cleaning power. Roborock models, on the other hand, have stronger navigation. The Roborock 2-in-1 models have both vacuum and mop features; the Roomba, however, has a self-emptying feature, which the Roborock does not. Users who have tested both machines claim that the Roborock has better brushes than the Roomba. Roborock is also quieter during the vacuuming process.


Is the self-emptying Roomba worth it?

Yes. A Roomba with a self-emptying base is well worth the extra cost. Not only does it add a level of convenience, but it also cleans more efficiently. A self-emptying vacuum saves you the added hassle of having to empty it yourself. Depending on the debris on your floors, and how often you use it, the latest Roomba models have a bin that can go up to 30 days without having to be emptied. When the Roomba finishes a cleaning cycle, it returns to its dock and a separate vacuum sucks out the debris through a trap door underneath the machine. The debris gets stored in a sealed bag or bin which can be removed and emptied at a later time.


How long do Roombas last?

According to iRobot, the Roomba’s battery can generally be used for about two hours after each charging session. They also say that their battery can be charged up to 400 times. Essentially, that equates to an average of 2 to 4 years of efficient service. It’s also important to note that proper maintenance and service will prolong the lifespan of your Roomba. Change the filters every 2 to 3 months and follow all other maintenance instructions supplied by the manufacturer. Another recommendation is to keep the Roomba plugged in when it’s not being used. This will extend the battery life.


Does Roborock empty itself?

Unlike Roomba, Roborock can’t empty itself. Roborock does, however, recommend cleaning the main brush and dustbin weekly. The washable filter should be cleaned at least every two weeks. The Roborock doesn’t alert you when its dustbin is full, so it’s recommended that you empty the dustbin regularly to avoid blockages and slower performance. Emptying the Roborock is as simple as using two finger holds to unlock and remove the dustbin. Once the dustbin is open, tilt it over a rubbish bin and tap to empty the contents.

Conclusion

Choosing a robot vacuum brand from so many available on the market can be quite a hassle. Things become even more complicated when you need to pick between two of the best brands. Will you opt for Roomba or Roborock?

If you’ve been indecisive for a while, this is the only article you need to read. Roomba is the best choice for everyone who’s looking for a robot vacuum. Their robots are amazing at tackling dirt, dust, and debris. They can trap even the tiniest particles with ease and are proven to be the best on the market no matter their price.

If you have any comments or first-hand experiences with Roomba or Roborock robot vacuums, please post them below or share your pictures via our social media. 

About Maricel Dee

Maricel Dee is a writer & blogger on all things home improvement. When she's not writing on her favorite home improvement topics, you can find her immersed in her own home projects.

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