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Messes don’t rest, but Roomba has to. Fortunately, you don’t have to wait too long for Roomba to charge between cleaning runs. In this article, we’ll look at how long Roomba batteries takes to charge, how long they can run on a single charge, and what you can do to maximize Roomba’s battery life.
How Long Does Roomba Take to Charge?
Roombas take at least two hours to charge, assuming the battery is in good condition. When you first receive a new Roomba, it should arrive partially charged, but you should charge it fully (at least 12 hours) before the first run. Failure to do so can negatively impact the lifespan of the battery.
Over time, you may see the charging time change drastically for your Roomba. This will be paired with decreased runtime for the Roomba once charged. Roomba batteries have a lifetime of 2–3 years under normal working conditions.
What to Do if Roomba Is Charging Slowly
Roomba will always take at least two hours to charge, but you can stop the charging process from getting slower than that. If the charging process is taking significantly longer than 2–3 hours, it may indicate an issue with the outlet, charging dock, charging contacts, or Roomba battery.
Dirt on the charging contacts is the most common cause of a slow-charging Roomba. You should be cleaning the charging base with a microfiber cloth at least monthly, taking particular care to keep the charging contacts free of dirt.
If your Roomba is not charging quickly even after cleaning the contacts, the battery may need replacing. Make sure you buy a battery pack that is compatible with your Roomba model. This one works with the Roomba 600, 800, and 900 series. And this one works for the i-series and e-series Roombas.
How Long Does a Roomba Run on a Full Battery?
A well-maintained Roomba battery can do 2 hours of cleaning on a full charge. That should be enough to clean a 2,000-square-foot home. For larger homes, your Roomba may need to recharge before completing a cleaning run.
In some cases, your Roomba may not be able to clean a full 2,000 square feet in a single run. Some factors that affect the cleaning time and total area cleaned in a run include:
- Amount of dirt: The more passes Roomba needs to make, the less space it will cover.
- Type of flooring: Roomba can take longer to clean heavy carpets and rugs compared to hardwood and tile.
- Floor transitions: Any time Roomba has to move between flooring types (rug, carpet, hardwood, etc.), it will slow down the cleaning process.
- Roomba model: Newer Roomba models have better mapping and navigation capabilities, allowing them to clean more efficiently.
- Floor plan complexity: The more objects Roomba needs to navigate around, the longer it will take to fully clean a room, especially for older models without advanced mapping features.
- Map Completeness: Newer Roombas create and store a map of your home. The first couple of runs take extra time because the map is not yet complete, and any significant changes to your floor layout (e.g., moving a couch) can slow your Roomba down until it learns the new plan.
- Battery age: Older batteries won’t hold as much charge, so Roomba will have to recharge more frequently as the battery ages.
Tips for Maximizing Roomba Battery Lifespan
These are a few of my top Roomba tips for keeping your battery running at full strength for several years.
- Run your Roomba often: Batteries decay faster if they aren’t cycled on a regular basis. Run your Roomba every day (or at least multiple times a week) to keep the battery at full health.
- Use Idle Mode when you’re on vacation: You can preserve Roomba’s battery while you are away by putting Roomba in idle or standby mode. These modes primarily prevent Roomba from running while you are away, but they also serve to preserve the battery.
- Store your Roomba battery properly: Idle mode is only made for short vacations. If Roomba is going to go weeks or months without a run, the battery should be stored either in a cool, dry place either in the Roomba (for Li-ion batteries) or separated from the Roomba (for NiMH batteries).
How to Tell if Roomba Is Charging
Roomba has indicator lights to tell you its current charging status. Most Roombas will show battery level using these light colors:
- Green or white if the Roomba is fully charged
- Amber pulsing if the Roomba is still charging
- Amber pulsing or red if the battery is very low or empty
Depending on your Roomba model, the light may not show while Roomba is charging. You can always check the battery status by pressing the clean button once. This will cause the indicator light to show the charging status.
For newer Roombas, you can also check the battery status in the iRobot HOME app. When you open the app, you’ll see a battery indicator icon at the top-right corner of the display.
Whether you have a tiny apartment or a mansion, Roomba is an ideal cleaning aid. You can even clean a multi-floor home with Roomba since robot vacuums can recognize stairs and newer Roombas can store multiple floor plans.
There are still some issues with robot vacuums, though. Along with the long charging time, Roomba can get stuck under furniture and older Roomba models aren’t great around pets and pet hair. Even with these problems, I think Roomba is worth it for most modern homeowners and apartment dwellers.