2009-Jun-08 05:24 UTC
Do the Roomba!
I just picked up a pair of iRobot Roombas (535 models). You've seen these things advertised on TV and on the web, but do they really work?

I have always been curious how well these things work. Friends of mine (Brian and China) just recently purchased one of these (the 550 model) and were telling me about it. Brian tells me that they are pretty happy with their purchase. He told me that the Roomba will go do its thing and every day there is a good amount of dust/dirt collected in its little bin.

Being single and lazy, I don't clean much. So something like this would be great for me. So I saw an opportunity to buy these on Woot! and so I did.

They come with a lighthouse which you can use to either confine the Roomba to a single room, by having it act as a virtual wall at the door way, or use it to guide it to the next room after it has finished with one room and then back after finishing the second room back to its home base.

I have not yet played with the lighthouse feature. I first turned it on this morning. I first let it loose downstairs, which is mostly hardwood flooring (no carpets).

Here are some pictures showing the Roomba in action:

Roomba cleaning pic 1 Roomba cleaning pic 2 Roomba cleaning pic 3
Dirt in the collection bin pic 1 Dirt in the collection bin pic 2 Dirt collected from living room

Next I took the Roomba upstairs where I have my bedroom and my home office. There is a Persian rug in my bedroom. I also allowed the Roomba to clean one of the two bathrooms upstairs.

You can see some the Roomba started out by chasing Frankie, my cat, out of the bedroom :-) After cleaning for a while it stopped. The Roomba, from what little I've read, will stop when it is done cleaning, its battery is low in power or if its dust bin is full. As you can see the dust bin was pretty full. Also note the hair cleaned out of the Roomba's brushes.

Roomba chasing the Frankie away Dirt collected - round 1 - pic 1 Dirt collected - round 1 - pic 2
Dirt collected - round 1 - pic 3 Dirt from the brushes - round 1  

After cleaning the Roomba, I let it loose again upstairs, curious to see how much more dirt it would collect. Well, it actually ended up running out of juice and stopped. Still, you can see it collected quite a bit of dirt despite its previous pass.

Dirt collected - round 2 - pic 1 Dirt collected - round 2 - pic 2

I believe this Roomba has earned its keep just by its work today. Hopefully this Roomba will help me keep my place a bit cleaner. Cleaning the Roomba itself doesn't take that much time; maybe five minutes or less. I am totally pleased by this purchase and recommend it to all single and lazy folks who would like to keep their place clean and be entertained all at the same time.
... sidster
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