Robot vacuums are one of the most popular smart gadgets today. Since the launch of the Roomba line from iRobot, the company has sold more than 20 million units of it across the globe. Every year, we see different manufacturers introduce new models to the market with even more high-tech features. Hence, the robovac game has gotten even more autonomous than ever.
Nevertheless, no matter how advanced your robotic vacuum is, it will still need your help from time to time. Yes, even the top-of-the-line models can get lost, tangled, or stuck. So if you want your smart cleaning device to run more efficiently and safely, it’s vital to take a few minutes to prep your space.
You can pick up magazines and toys and hide maybe the trim on a carpet. Doing these little things before you let your robot roam around your house will ensure that it gets the job done. With that in mind, here are some ways on how to prepare you home so that your robotic vacuum does not get stuck.
Always Read The Manual
Even if you’ve previously owned a robot vacuum, make sure to go through the owner’s manual of your device before setting it to clean. If your new robot does not seem to be working, double-check if it has a fully charged battery. Most of the time, the battery needs several hours of charging time before you can start vacuuming.
If your robovac’s setup requires WiFi or Bluetooth connectivity, ensure that you did not skip any steps. Also, its manual contains troubleshooting tips and guides that will come handy in situations like this.
Furthermore, make sure that your robot has no missing components like sensors and cleaning brushes. These extra steps can help avoid future issues and allow for seamless and efficient cleaning sessions.
Ensure That The Charging Has Plenty Of Room
The charging dock of your unit is not only its charging base. It also acts as its home base. Likewise, your robot utilizes it as a reference point when navigating from room to room. So to ensure that it can find its way back when necessary, you should leave enough space around the docking station.
Be mindful where you place your robot vacuum cleaner. You should place it somewhere with no clutter. Also, make sure to keep it away from the stairs. There should also be a clearance of around 4 feet in front of it. Meanwhile, its sides should be at least 1.5 to 3 feet clear.
One of the best locations to put it is at the corner of your lobby or living room, or any open area and against the wall. This will make it easier for your unit to navigate its way to its base to re-dock and charge.
Clear Your Floors Of Any Cords Or Cables
Robot vacuum cleaners do not mix well with cords or cables lying around on the floor. You can thank lady luck when your device does not get tangled. However, they will often get stuck. And there are times when you’ll find it hard to locate it once it gets stuck.
To prevent this problem from happening, make sure to keep every cord or cable off the floor. It’s also a good idea to tie them up using wire clips.
Do A Little Decluttering
A robovac has a sensor that enables it to detect, identify, and dodge obstructions as it makes its way across a room. Nevertheless, the items it can detect and evade have a minimum height requirement. Moreover, you may find your robot stuck in small and hard objects, such as Lego pieces, screws, and coins. These can result in damaging its delicate parts.
Additionally, sharp objects can cause your unit to stop working entirely. On top of that, these items may likely leave your nice, expensive floors with ugly scratches. So always prep the rooms in your home, clear any obstructions,m and follow these simple tips before letting your robot vacuum clean.
Water and Fire Hazards
You should move or block any items that contain liquid such as the water dish of your pet and plant containers. Doing so will prevent your cleaner from plowing right into them. Your robot can acquire permanent damage once its inner components get wet. What’s more, neglect on your part may result in voiding its warranty.
Likewise, this is applicable to pet feces, urine, and other unpleasant substances. The last thing you want is to see your vacuum rolling right through them, creating a mess across your floor. You may also want to place your pets in their crate in a different room if you’re going to schedule your robot to vacuum when you’re not home.
Fire hazard items such as candles and heaters are other things you should look out for. When your unit is working, make sure your heaters are not running. Your gadget may push it against your drapes or other flammable objects near it, leading to a fire. Also, if you have burning candles, they should not be near the edge of the table. Instead, place them in the middle to prevent accidents.
Turn The Lights On
Some cleaners have optical sensors to help them maneuver around a room. This means that if a room does not have enough ambient light, it’ll be difficult for your unit to navigate it properly. Likewise, it’ll be harder for it to see obstructions on its path.
So if your robotic vacuum comes with a cameras-based navigation system, it’s advisable to turn some lights on in the room if you’ll be away as it cleans. Furthermore, you may consider leaving a shade or two open.
Patience Is The Key
Your robot vacuum with a high-level navigation system may need to run a few cycles before it can fully understand your home’s layout. This will allow it to create an internal map of your space and store a floor pan thoroughly. Until such time, you may see it bump into objects and miss some areas. But don’t worry, you’ll see a significant improvement in its performance and speed once it runs a few cycles.
Also, you may want to avoid rearranging your furniture at the moment to help it. Keep in mind that each time you move large items like furniture, your machine will need to revise the maps it has already stored in its system.
Aside from the preparation steps we have here, you also need to take care of your robot properly. Likewise, it’s vital to follow any upkeep recommended by its manufacturer. So never lose your owner’s manual.
Another essential factor to remember is to take time to find the best robot vacuum your budget can afford. It should not only work well for your house but your lifestyle as well. So before purchasing one, make sure to read online reviews first to compare the advantages, disadvantages, and specs of each model you’re considering.