Roomba And Stairs
There are many things a Roomba can do, and many things it can’t do. Cleaning stairs is one of the things it can’t do. So Roomba and stairs definitely do NOT go well together.
There are some reports of Roomba’s not handling stairs well, like the Roomba crashing DOWN the stairs. I’ve only heard of this on older models. If you go to Amazon to read some reviews using this link, and peruse most of the reviews you’ll see that at least one reviewer complained about the Roomba and stairs problem. This person’s unit crashed down the stairs and had to be replaced. I scanned reviews for the newer models like the Roomba 770 and Roomba 980 to see if there were similar issues with the Roomba and stairs but couldn’t find any issues at all on these updated models. If you’re thinking about buying a robotic vacuum then you’re very unlikely to have that issue if you stick to a newer model.
So what DOES a Roomba do when it encounters stairs, you might ask? Ideally, it should detect a drop-off and back off. There are some cases where it will detect a drop off, get confused, and get stuck. You can see that happen in this Youtube Video:
Another issue with the Roomba’s drop-off detection is that many people complain about the roomba freaking out on black carpet. Some people have area rugs in their house with large swaths of black coloring and it makes the Roomba think it’s going to fall into a bottomless pit.
If you have stairs should you get a Roomba?
Do you have a lot of stairs in your house? Carpeted stairs? The Roomba won’t clean carpeted stairs so you’ll need a nice portable lightweight vacuum to clean those. As mentioned earlier, the Roomba and stairs issue has been fixed in later models, and to the best of my knowledge even in the newer 650 models. Roomba has software it runs called firmware that’s updated from time to time and iRobot keeps improving it, fixing issues that come up.
If you’re on the fence about buying a Roomba, click my Amazon link below to be taken to reviews for one of the more popular models to see for yourself. I think they’re worth it, even with stairs in the house.