For years now, people have been looking for ways to keep their homes clean with minimal effort and have turned to robot vacuums to do the work for them.
The problem is that most of these devices are still not able to perform the task yet.
Can the BotVac 80 stand out from the rest?
Related: Please review my article comparing the entire BotVac product line for the latest and best options available.
CNet’s Megan Wallerton thinks so.
If you remember my previous review of the Neato XV Signature series, Cnet gave it the Editor’s Choice stamp which means that it performed well when tested in a controlled environment.
So what has Neato done for the already highly rated XV series?
First, Neato added an inch to the motorized brush which widened the cleaning path all the way near the edge.
Second, it added a side brush that improves performance on edges and corners.
And third, making the dirt bin and filter larger which means you’ll need to empty it less often.
The first and second improvement, actually improved the cleaning performance along the edges which is double that of the previous XV series.
Quick look at the features
- Botvision laser-guided navigation system is used to clean rooms efficiently with a straight back and forth motion
- Works on all types of floors from hardwood, tile, and linoleum to carpet
- Uses 10.9 inch wide cleaning brush
- Comes with two types of cleaning brushes – a combo brush (for pet hair) and a standard razor brush
- It has an angle brush that greatly improves edge cleaning
- Dirt container large capacity 2.96 cups
- It uses a NiMH battery that will last for about an hour on a single charge
- It comes with high-performance filters that prevent allergens from appearing
- The wide whisking bar and the addition of a side brush improve cleaning performance along the edges
- It will work best on cleaning hard wood surfaces where rabbits are a common problem under furniture
- Outperformed by a really good XV series based on testing by CNet
- It uses a new QNX OS software that claims to improve navigation
- Bigger trash and filter means fewer trips to the trash
- Quieter than the XV series
- Runs for about an hour on a single charge
- May not work on high pile carpets
- Carpets will not be deeply cleaned
- No remote control
- It still uses NiMH battery instead of Li-ion battery
What do you expect from Neato BotVac 80?
This is not just an upgrade but a completely new bot. It comes with newer navigation software, brush and more powerful motor.
Wider cleaning path
The motorized brush has a width of approximately 10.9 inches, which is wider than the XV series which has a brush width of 9.8 inches.
It also has a larger dustbin. In older XV variants, which had a capacity of only 2.54 cups, the BotVac 80 has a capacity of 2.96 cups.
Besides enlarging the dirt cup, the Neato also has a larger HEPA filter. Another improvement is the addition of a side brush that improves edge cleaning.
Note that each of the four models of the BotVac family is the same in terms of motor, battery, and navigation features.
The differences are the color and accessories included which I will show you a bit.
With this new product, Neato has upgraded the operating system. And now it uses QNX OS which has improved navigation.
Before we go ahead, please be careful not to drop this otherwise it will have disastrous results like damaging the LDS sensor.
Also once you have this vacuum turn it on right away and check for potential flaws in terms of navigation.
So in the event that you do get a lemon, you can still order a replacement unit.
Judging by the reviews, the navigation has been improved. Of all the robotics brands, Neato’s LDS Sensor does a great job at avoiding obstacles. However, please remove any wires or toys that may prevent this device from performing its function.
Re-docking won’t be a problem, again based on reviews from CNet consumers alike, this bot will return to its home base for recharging without any difficulty at all.
Here is a video of Neato in action…
Here’s the difference between BotVac and Roomba (mobility)
Will he clean the stairs?
Cleaning can be scheduled 7 times a week (once a day).
It will take about two hours to fully charge. Initial charging time is about 12 hours.
Robot cleaning and maintenance
You will need to clean the side brush and whisk bar. Both are easy to remove. Here’s a video on how to do it for your reference…
the show length
A full charge will run for about an hour or so. Neato recommends fully charging and discharging three times to reach its full capacity in terms of uptime.
The robot itself and its parts come with a one-year warranty while the battery comes with a 6-month warranty only.
Watch it in action
Executing floor cleaning
Dust is one of the biggest problems I have with linoleum, no matter how much you clean or vacuum, dust is everywhere which is not a good thing if you have an illness like asthma.
BotVac is a lifesaver in these cases because it will do the work for you.
The combination of vacuum suction and blade brushing helps pick up dust and other dirt on this surface.
In a Cedar Grain Test conducted by CNET, it picked 2.45 ounces from 2.5 ounces of cedar scattered over hardwood, second only to the Infinuvo Hovo 510.
In the sand test on hardwood, it finished second behind the Roomba 880 and ahead of the XV signature pro which collected 1.22 ounces from a potential 1.25.
Referring again to the same tests conducted by CNet, BotVac performed well in terms of picking up rice grains on a medium and low pile carpet, outperforming the Infinuvo Hovo 510 and Roomba 880 by picking up 2.45 on a low pile carpet and 2.38 on a medium pile carpet of 2.5 ounces .
The 880 and XV’s signature performance did not outperform despite picking up sand on low-pile carpets.
So overall performance on this surface is mixed but should give you a benchmark of what to expect.
Here’s a video showing how the BotVac performs on the carpet (this is the BotVac 85)
80 and 85 are the same. The only difference is the attachment that is included in the package.
Avoid using this on a high-pile rug as one consumer commented that he struggled to move around on it.
On low to medium pile carpets, this will work just fine. But it will struggle with fine debris like sawdust (as in the CNet review).
You should have no problem moving from hard surfaces to most rugs as long as it’s not too thick.
If she can’t get past the rug, she will either turn around (thinking it’s an obstacle) or get stuck trying to get past it.
Pet hair removal
It performed very well on pet hair, particularly on hardwoods which picks up every strand of hair that gets put there but couldn’t beat the Neato XV-21 at cleaning pet hair on a low to medium pile carpet.
Based on pet hair testing, Neato XV-21, BotVac, and Signature Pro are the top 3 final products and it’s no surprise because their products are known to be very good pet hair cleaners.
|charger type||charging station|
|Shipping time||2 hours|
|cleaning path||10.9 inces|
|the show length||Approximately. 60 minutes
(based on reviews)
|net weight (with battery)||9 pounds|
|Purchase Weight||17.8 EGP|
(L x W x H)
|12.7 x 13.2 x 3.9 inches|
|bin full indicator||
|Cleaning sessions per week||7|
|containment||Uses magnetic stripe instead of a virtual wall.|
|brush cleaning tools||Unavailable|
|Accessories included||charging base
6-foot magnetic tape
1 high performance filter
|Guarantee||1 year on Android
6 months on battery
What do consumers say?
The addition of a side brush and a larger dust box resolved most of the shortcomings of the previous XV series according to consumers.
These disadvantages include its inability to clean edges and the frequency with which you need to stop and unload it.
But even with the wide motorized brush and side brush, some consumers say you still need a handy vacuum to clean corners because it still misses spots here and there.
Another improvement that satisfied consumers was the noise, the old XV series was loud but this one was very quiet.
Those two improvements alone are enough to challenge the Roomba 880 as the best dog but it still lacked one thing – the remote control.
But for over $100 I would have made that much on the 880 even though there is no remote because it’s more efficient and you can schedule it.
There have been consumers complaining about the 3000 error, which is a navigation error but the majority of people who bought this didn’t understand it.
These could be defective units that need to be replaced.
While it will work on most surfaces, some consumers have cautioned against using it on shaggy carpets because it will struggle to even move.
In general, consumers like the performance of the BotVac 80 as an in-between cleaner. But this is by no means a substitute for a vertical vacuum cleaner that saves you time because it does the job for you.
Where can I buy this?
You will have two options for this. The first option is to buy it new for less than $500. However, given that the cost of the newer BotVac D5 is the same, the latter would be a better option.
The second option is to buy it back for less than $225 if you don’t mind getting something used.
Only a refurbished unit is eligible for free shipping if you join Prime.
Amazon also sells extended warranties (up to 3 years) if you want that extra peace of mind.
Note that BotVac 80 is the older alternative. Please check the latest Neato robots such as BotVac D5, BotVac Connected or D7.
This would be great for homes that mostly have hardwood or low to medium pile carpets because apart from the suction, it has two brushes – a blade brush and a combo brush that will work well with a variety of debris from dusting rabbits to pet hair.
Although pet owners would be better off with the XV-21 as it outperformed it at cleaning pet hair but the difference is not much.
As for other types of debris, I’ve held it against other big brands like Infinuvo, iRobot, and LG.
Even if the Roomba 880 is more popular on Amazon, don’t sleep on the BotVac 80. The cleaning performance isn’t far off and it’s cheaper.
This will be more efficient due to its more predictable cleaning pattern which allows rooms to be cleaned faster than the 880.
Noise levels have decreased, too, which is one of the biggest consumer complaints.
As with all robot cleaners, you’ll need to do your part to prep your home before using this – this means arranging all wires and removing toys and things strewn on the floor.
If you have low hanging furniture where you think the robot might not fit, consider putting some rubber spacers on the legs to increase clearance.
If you don’t want to pay more than $600 for a robot vacuum, this would be a good and cheaper alternative.