Best Robot Vacuum for Hardwood Floors

Hardwood flooring is beautiful and can add considerable value to your home. It can also be difficult to clean, especially if you have pets or children. High traffic areas tend to get hit the hardest, which is where a great robot vacuum cleaner can come in handy. While a vacuum may seem like overkill compared to a broom, a robotic vacuum geared towards hardwood will make your life easy.

Machines designed for hardwood flooring don't require the same amount of power as you'll need for carpet, and there are even models that can mop your floor and remove debris. Regardless of the model you choose, rest assured a robot vacuum cleaner will shave hours off your weekly cleaning routine, which is why we've put together a buying guide to help you find the right vacuum to suit your needs.

The best robot vacuum for hardwood floors should meet certain standards, although some models have a few more bells & whistles that set them apart from the rest. Whether you are looking for a connected robot vacuum or just need something simple, we have an option for you.

Robotic Vacuums vs. Traditional Vacuums

Traditional upright vacuum cleaners still outnumber robotic vacuums by a wide margin. If you're thinking about switching from a manual to an autonomous cleaning system, it's important to understand what you'll gain and lose when you make the jump.

With a robotic vacuum, you'll never have to worry about tripping over a cord or having to unplug and switch outlets halfway through the job. If you have health issues that make vacuuming difficult, those will no longer be a problem considering robot vacuums are light and easy to deal with. Some are nearly maintenance-free as well.

These machines take up less space when not in use, come with connected features, and dozens of quality models are cheaper than a good upright vacuum cleaner. On the downside, a robot vacuum will never be quite as powerful as an upright or hold as much debris. Maintenance can be more expensive as well, depending on the system.

Obstacles can also be an issue without a good mapping system, and unless you buy a unit with a large dust bin, you may have to empty the vacuum more often than you'd like.

How to find the Best Robot Vacuum for Hardwood Flooring

Making the transition from a traditional vacuum cleaner to a robot can be a difficult decision. As you can see, there are plenty of advantages to using a robotic assistant. That doesn't mean finding the right one is easy, however, considering the wealth of options available today. Here are a few tips to help you narrow the field.

Do you have a large or medium-sized home?

Homes come in many sizes from mini-mansions to smaller abodes under 1,000 square feet. Square footage is critical when installing new hardwood flooring, but also something to keep in mind before you purchase a robot vacuum cleaner. The machines on our list fall into one of two categories as they are geared towards medium or large homes. While there are no distance ratings on robotic vacuums, you simply need to look at the battery life.

If you need the vacuum to clean an entire home over 2,000 square feet, you'll need the system with excellent battery life – or at least one that recharges quickly. For small homes or residences with a mix of hardwood and carpeting, battery life may not be a major concern. In the end, it all comes down to how many rooms you plan to clean daily, as everyone's routines are different.

Power Ratings

There are only a few technical specifications you’ll need to keep an eye out for with robotic vacuum cleaners that are built for hardwood. Obviously, battery life is important but tied to the size of your home, and you’re not going to find many systems that list a specification for speed. The suction power it's just as significant with hardwood flooring, however, and it's a specification you'll find on “almost” every system.

This is one occasion where a bigger number is better, even if there's no magic number when it comes to power ratings. Measured in Pa, this number can range anywhere between 1,000 to 2,000Pa for most robotic vacuum cleaners in this class. It's more important with brushless systems than ones with brushes and a number that shouldn’t be overlooked regardless of the style of robot vacuum.

Mapping and Navigation

Regardless of how large a room is or your home in general, your new robotic vacuum cleaner needs to be able to find its way around. Unlike early generations of robot vacuums, new models have a variety of ways they can navigate through your home without becoming stuck are tumbling down the stairs.

Furniture will never be a problem with the best robot vacuum cleaners, and you won’t have to worry about cords or an off-limit room with those models either. Mapping technology can vary from one manufacturer to the next, but it’s a critical component with all robot vacuum cleaners.

Most machines have “cliff” sensors to keep them away from stairs or ledges. Navigation can come courtesy of cameras, lasers, or a combination of sensors. A good mapping system can let your vacuum pick up where it stopped if it runs out of juice and ensures it doesn't waste time cleaning the same areas over and over again.

Wi-Fi or Remote Control?

Once you have a good idea of the size vacuum you need, it’s time to consider the control methods. In most cases, a robot vacuum cleaner will allow you to control it with a remote or through Wi-Fi. Some models have a few physical controls as well, but these vacuums are built to be autonomous, so manual controls aren’t necessary.

The main method of control for most units is a remote or Wi-Fi. Units with a dedicated remote can be cheaper, while vacuums with Wi-Fi typically have an app or allow you to connect to systems like Alexa or Google Home. In some cases, you’ll have multiple options, but budget-friendly machines typically have a remote while Wi-Fi is still considered a premium feature.

Cleaning Modes

This is something every robot vacuum cleaner on our list will have. Cleaning modes refer to preset ways your vacuum can operate, and most manufacturers have a similar set on their systems. Spot cleaning and single room cleaning modes are common, and as the names imply, allow you to clean a small area or single room instead of your entire home.

Edge mode is another popular option, and something you’ll find on most systems. It allows the machine to navigate around the edges of a room while leaving the middle alone. Auto mode varies and may include a random pattern or mapped configuration depending on your system.

Height

We’ll keep this short and simple as size is important but usually not an issue in this class. With robot vacuum cleaner sizes, the main thing to keep in mind is the height of the unit itself. Do you have a lot of furniture in your home? If so, clearance could be an issue depending on your furnishings, although weight shouldn’t be a problem as most weigh under 8 pounds.

You can’t expect your vacuum to slide under everything, but it should be small enough to get under or around most of the objects in your house. You can't change the size of your vacuum, and rearranging your home or raising furniture is certainly not ideal. Machines considered slim are under 3” high while anything over that mark may be too close for comfort.

Robot Vacuum Cleaner Features

Just like their upright brethren, you'll find a variety of features on robotic vacuum cleaners. Many are common and found on a variety of vacuums, while others can raise the overall cost of a unit considerably. Below are some examples of features that fall under the standard and flagship categories.

  • Dust Bins – More often than not, you’ll find manufacturers that use an oversized dust bin as a selling point. While not standard by any means, it’s a feature to seriously consider if you have a large home or clean frequently.
  • Side Brushes – These are standard on budget models, while premium units can use other methods to draw dirt and debris in. They are also a part that typically needs to be replaced, so you may want to check on parts availability beforehand.
  • Boundary Markers –Boundary markers tell your machine which rooms it needs to stay out of, and how it’s handled varies from one company to the next. Cheap robot vacuums may not have this feature at all, while other systems use an app, magnetic strips, or beacons to keep your robot away.
  • Wi-Fi – Only found on mid-range and premium systems, Wi-Fi allows you to use mobile apps or connect to smart home devices. While most units stick to the 2.4GHz band, there are 5GHz systems available as well.
  • Recharge & Resume –A system with recharge and resume, will finish where it left off if it runs out of juice. It’s certainly not standard although most systems will return to their base to charge when the battery gets low.
  • Self-Cleaning – This feature goes under different names depending on the manufacturer, but it’s something you will only find on high-end vacuums. Simply put, these units will empty or clean out their own dust bin, so you never have to lift a finger.

The Best Robot Vacuums for Hardwood Flooring

There are over a hundred different robot vacuum cleaners available today, which makes finding the right one difficult. All of our picks for the best robot vacuum for hardwood floors include systems that are designed with hardwood flooring in mind but capable of handling light-duty work on low carpeting as well.

 Product                       Details

iRobot Roomba 960 Robot Vacuum Cleaner

iRobot Roomba 960 Robot Vacuum Cleaner
  • Power Rating: N/A
  • Battery Life: 75 minutes
  • Height: 3.6”
  • Navigation: Camera
  • Connectivity: Wi-Fi

Neato D4 Laser Guided Robot Vacuum

Neato D4 Laser Guided Robot Vacuum
  • Power Rating: 1,400Pa
  • Battery Life: 75 minutes
  • Height: 3.9”
  • Navigation: Laser
  • Connectivity: Wi-Fi

Coredy R750 Robot Vacuum Cleaner Mopping System

Coredy R750 Robot Vacuum Cleaner Mopping System
  • Power Rating: 1,300Pa
  • Battery Life: 100 minutes
  • Height: 2.85”
  • Navigation: Sensors/Modes
  • Connectivity: Remote

Eufy RoboVac 11S Robot Vacuum Cleaner

Eufy RoboVac 11S Robot Vacuum Cleaner
  • Power Rating: 1,300Pa
  • Battery Life: 100 minutes
  • Height: 2.85”
  • Navigation: Sensors/Modes
  • Connectivity: Remote

iLIFE V3s Pro Robot Vacuum Cleaner

iLIFE V3s Pro Robot Vacuum Cleaner
  • Power Rating: 600Pa
  • Battery Life: 100 minutes
  • Height: 3”
  • Navigation: Sensors/Modes
  • Connectivity: Remote

Roborock E35 Robot Vacuum and Mop

Roborock E35 Robot Vacuum and Mop
  • Power Rating: 2,000Pa
  • Battery Life: 150 minutes
  • Height: 3.6”
  • Navigation: Sensors/App
  • Connectivity: Wi-Fi

1. iRobot Roomba 960 Robot Vacuum Cleaner

iRobot Roomba 960 Robot Vacuum Cleaner

Power Rating

N/A

Battery Life

75 minutes

Height

3.6”

Navigation

Camera

Connectivity

Wi-Fi

 If you've heard anything about robotic vacuum cleaners in the past decade, there’s a strong chance you already know about the Roomba from iRobot. All of the vacuums in their catalog are high-quality products, but we chose the Roomba 960 as the top option for larger homes with hardwood floors.

One of the highlights of this unit is the 3-stage cleaning system. It consists of multi-surface rubber brushes and a powerlifting system that delivers 5x the suction of other units even if the company is vague with their ratings. It also has a high-efficiency filter capable of capturing particles down to 10 microns. Needless to say, you won’t have to worry about navigation with this robotic vacuum either.

The Roomba 960 uses iAdapt 2.0 technology and vSLAM navigation to keep your home tidy. That means you'll get multi-room coverage, and coverage maps with a clean map report. Recharge and resume are standard on this model, and it comes with multiple modes. As you'd expect, Wi-Fi is also a feature and opens the door to their mobile app and smart home devices from Amazon and Google.

On average, you can expect to get between 40 and 75 minutes per charge from the Roomba 960.You'll also get an alert if the bin becomes full before the job is done. The bin is located in the back and ready to access, and the overall design is easy on the eyes. That said, this vacuum is one of the taller systems on our list at 3.6” tall although it's light at around 8.5 pounds

The 960 is one of iRobot's more affordable models and an excellent choice for hardwood. It's cheaper than models with Power Boost technology but still has all the key features that make the company's product so appealing. The only knock on this unit is the price and the fact it may be a little too tall to fit under some furniture. The Roomba 960 comes with an extra filter and brush along with a virtual barrier.

Pros

  • Powerful suction
  • Camera and sensor navigation
  • 3-stage cleaning system
  • Recharge & resume

Cons

  • The price tag

2. Neato D4 Laser Guided Robot Vacuum

Neato D4 Laser Guided Robot Vacuum

Power Rating

1,400Pa

Battery Life

75 minutes

Height

3.9”

Navigation

Laser

Connectivity

Wi-Fi

If you're looking for a connected robotic vacuum cleaner, the D4 from Neato robotics should be on your list. The smart vacuum cleaner is packed full of features and designed to reach dirt in corners and other tight spaces.

The Neato D4 has an unconventional design as it shaped like a D and not a circle. This allows it to clean corners better than a round robotic vacuum, which relies on brushes to pull in debris. That said, it's taller than other systems at 3.92” and weighs close to 7.5 pounds. There is a reason for the extra weight, however.

The D4 has a brush that's considerably larger than ones found on other systems. There are no side brushes, but the combo brush does an excellent job thanks to the design. The system recharges quickly with quick boost tech, which lets you top the battery off in around 100 minutes. It also has a recharge and resume feature as well.

There are multiple cleaning modes with a D4, including house, spot, scheduled, echo, and turbo modes. The BotVac relies on LaserSmart technology for navigation and allows you to set virtual boundaries with no-go lines through a mobile app. As it has Wi-Fi connectivity, you'll have access to Google Home, the Amazon Echo, and even the Apple Watch.

There's a lot we like about the BotVac D4 from Neato. The addition of no-go lines is a huge perk, and it's decked that with an array of sensors and the aforementioned laser. Some user reviews complained of subpar battery life although it will return to the dock to recharge itself and has quick boost technology.

Pros

  • A wide array of connectivity options
  • Laser-guided navigation
  • Large combo brush
  • 0.7-liter bin

Cons

  • Battery life could be better
  • The height

3. Coredy R750 Robot Vacuum Cleaner Mopping System

Coredy R750 Robot Vacuum Cleaner Mopping System

Power Rating

1,600Pa

Battery Life

120 minutes

Height

2.7”

Navigation

Sensors/App

Connectivity

Wi-Fi

Mopping vacuum cleaners have become more popular in recent years, and that trend has made its way to the robotic realm as well. Our top choice for a vacuum mopping robot is the Coredy R750, and it's an interesting alternative if you want a mop bot that won't break the bank.

The Coredy R750 is a slim machine capable of transitioning from hardwood to carpeting a rug with ease thanks to Boost-Intellect technology. That amps things up when the robot encounters carpeting in the and a set of included magnetic boundary strips ensure your carpet won't get wet when the mopping function is in use.

The mopping system on this machine is controlled electronically and designed to monitor water levels and prevent spillage. With a rating of 1,600Pa, it’s powerful, and it has a few handy features that are sure to please. You can control this unit with Alexa or Google Assistant as it's connected, but you can also use the company's app as well.

This allows you to set customized cleaning modes while also allowing you to find your robot if it ever becomes lost in your household. The battery is listed at 2,600mAh, which the company says is good for around 120 minutes per charge. The anti-collision technology and sensor array are sound although a step behind premium models.

The Coredy R750 is an excellent option if you want a robot that vacuums and mops. It's affordable, has plenty of pop, and the fact it's connected is the icing on the cake. You'll get a remote, two boundary strips, and an extra HEPA filter with this system along with the usual accessories and a 1-year guarantee.

Pros

  • Wi-Fi compatibility
  • Mopping capabilities
  • Boundary strips
  • Good battery life

Cons

  • Cleaning patterns

​​​​4. Eufy RoboVac 11S Robot Vacuum Cleaner 

Eufy RoboVac 11S Robot Vacuum Cleaner

Power Rating

1,300Pa

Battery Life

100 minutes

Height

2.85”

Navigation

Sensors/Modes

Connectivity

Remote

Eufy has one of the larger lineups of robotic vacuum cleaners around with close to a dozen models currently available. Our top pick from the company in this category is the Eufy RoboVac 11S, a slim machine designed to get into those hard-to-reach areas of your home.

The Eufy RoboVac 11S is a streamlined machine that's only 2.85” high. Despite its small stature, it's powerful with a suction rating of 1,300Pa and a walking speed of 10.5” inches per second. It has a modern design as well with a tempered glass top cover that's resistant to scratches and blue LED lighting.

Stairs or ledges won't be a concern as this vacuum has drop sensing technology. It can also return to its base and recharge itself when the power gets low. The Eufy 11s has a run time of around 100 minutes and takes between 5 to 6 hours to recharge. Other specs of interest include a climbing threshold of 0.63” and a dust bin capacity of 0.6 liters.

While perfect for hardwood, this Robot vacuum also features multi-surface cleaning. It's rated for medium pile carpet, and the company’s Boost IQ tech ensures you'll have enough power for those level changes. The 11S uses infrared technology to find its way around a room and feature several different cleaning modes.

Eufy engineered this vacuum to fit almost anywhere, including under couches, beds, and tables throughout your home. The runtime is respectable, and it's powerful as well. While it doesn't have Wi-Fi, you will get an easy to use remote. On the downside, the navigation system is a bit outdated and there's no barrier feature. The Eufy 11s comes with a 12-month guarantee and excellent customer support from the company.

Pros

  • Ease of use
  • Triple filter system
  • Several cleaning modes
  • Excellent price point

Cons

  • Underwhelming speed
  • Not as smart as other systems

5. iLIFE V3s Pro Robot Vacuum Cleaner

iLIFE V3s Pro Robot Vacuum Cleaner

Power Rating

600Pa

Battery Life

100 minutes

Height

3”

Navigation

Sensors/Modes

Connectivity

Remote

The iLife V3s is a robotic vacuum cleaner that proves you don't need to break the bank to make the switch from an upright. An excellent price point is only one reason to appreciate this system, however, as we think you'll be thrilled with its performance as well.

This robotic vacuum cleaner is medium-sized, with a height of around 3” and a weight of 4.5 pounds. While the design isn't fancy, it performs as advertised and is easy to operate thanks to a number of features. That includes Cliff sensors along with OBS sensors on the body to help the unit avoid collisions.

The V3s also has several operating modes with point, edge, automatic, and programming modes. The power is a little underwhelming considering it's in the 600Pa range. The bin is also undersized compared to similar models at 300 milliliters. This system features two charging modes, including the ability to return to its home base when the power runs low.

iLife produced an efficient little robotic vacuum with the V3s Pro, and it happens to be the most budget-friendly unit on our list. It's rated at between 90 to 100 minutes of battery life, and while it's missing some of the bells and whistles found on premium models or a roller brush, the suction system is perfect for hardwood flooring.

Pros

  • Excels with pet hair
  • Budget-friendly price tag
  • Brushless suction system
  • Remote control

Cons

  • Light on features
  • Can struggle with large debris

6. Roborock E35 Robot Vacuum and Mop

Roborock E35 Robot Vacuum and Mop

Power Rating

2,000Pa

Battery Life

150 minutes

Height

3.6”

Navigation

Sensors/App

Connectivity

Wi-Fi

Interesting features are always a surefire way to make a product stand out, and it's no different in the world of robotic vacuum cleaners. One of the more unique features you’ll find in this class are robots that mop and vacuum floors. That's what you get from the Roborock E35, but it's just the tip of the iceberg.

With a rating of 2,000Pa, the Roborock E35 robot vacuum has plenty of power. It also has a large 640ml dust bin and is powered by a 5,200mAh battery. The company claims you'll get around two and a half hours of runtime from this unit, and we're pleased to say that most user reviews say those numbers hold true. On the downside, it’s a taller unit at 3.6” high.

Despite all its power, this unit takes it easy on furniture with a gentle bumping system and has an array of sensors skip it from falling down the stairs. It can spot clean areas on demand and will automatically increase power when it moves to an area with carpet or goes over a rug. The Roborock E35 also has a recharge and resume feature and Wi-Fi connectivity.

This vacuums' ability to mop is a key component considering it can mop and vacuum simultaneously and has a large dust bin as well. That’s a good thing considering there's no “bin alert” system to let you know when it's full. The same goes for the water tank, so you'll need to keep in eye on both areas.

With a huge battery and impressive suction, the Roborock e35 is a vacuum that can handle dirty hardwood in large homes with ease. Consumers found that the mopping feature works as advertised, although it's no substitute for the manual method. You'll also need to set up a barrier if you have rooms with carpets or rugs while the system is mopping.

Pros

  • Wi-Fi with App control
  • 2000 Pa
  • Huge battery
  • Mopping feature

Cons

  • Limited mapping
  • Barriers needed for mopping

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Do vacuums with higher amps have more power?

A: A vacuum cleaners amp rating only tells you how much electricity it uses, not how much airflow or suction the machine produces.

Q: Will a vacuum cleaner damage hardwood floors?

A: If you’re concerned about scratches on hard flooring surfaces, look for a vacuum that allows you to turn off the brush roll. There are suction-only systems as well, but you shouldn’t have to worry about scratches with any high-quality vacuum.

Q: How often will I need to clean or maintenance my robot vacuum?

A: While it’s a good idea to give them a quick dusting with every cycle, the frequency of cleaning depends on the brand and manufacturer.

Q: Are robotic vacuum cleaners bagless?

A: Most, if not all newer machines use a bagless system, but there are a few exceptions.

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