Our ranking of the top five best Roombas for dog hair includes vacuums from all branches of the Roomba family tree, each delivering a unique combination of price and performance. I’ve tested iRobot Roombas from the 600, 800, 900, i7, and e series to find out which ones have the suction power, durability, and reliable performance to clean up pet hair well.
iRobot Roomba 980 Robot Vacuum
The Roomba 980 isn’t cheap, but it has many features and strengths that other, more affordable models don’t have. The Roomba 980, like all the other models in the 900 series, has a new navigation system. It uses simultaneous visual localization and mapping to help you figure out the floor plan and make a mental map of your home.
The last series of Roombas cleaned like a drunken sailor, but these are smart and effective. Even so, the camera system might be a little too bright for you, and if you’re worried about your privacy, you should probably go with a different model.
The Roomba 980 has suction that can adapt to different surfaces. This lets it put more power where it’s needed most. When the 980 finds the carpet, it automatically boosts the air power by up to 10 times. It’s a good choice for people with different floors, thick rugs, and a lot of pet hair and dirt.
Similar to all Roombas from the 800 series and up, this one has two rubber rollers that dig deep into the carpet to loosen hair, cat litter, and dirt. These rubber rollers are great for people who have pets with long hair.
Roomba 960 Robot Vacuum
If you want a top-of-the-line robot vacuum but don’t want to spend over $700 on the 980 or even more on the new i7 or i7+, the 960 is a good choice. It has a good range of features and costs about $599.99, less than the most expensive models but not a steal.
What is the main variance between the Roomba 960 and the 980, which cost $200 less than our top pick? First, the Roomba 960 isn’t quite as strong as the Roomba 980. The same motor from the 800 series is used. Its AeroForce 3-Stage Cleaning System only has 5 times as much power as the 600 series, while the 980 has 10 times as much energy.
It doesn’t have suction that adapts to different surfaces so it won’t work better on carpeted floors. It only lasts 75 minutes, almost half of what the 980 can do. You don’t have to trouble about the vacuum dying before the job is done because it will automatically charge up and return to where it left off.
The 960 is just as good at navigation as the other phones in the series. Instead of sliding and randomly bumping around the house, it uses an improved navigation system to do the job quickly.
Roomba 890 Robot Vacuum
It doesn’t look as nice or has a sound navigation system as Roombas in the 900 series and above, but if you have a small home with low-pile carpets or hardwood floors, the 890 is powerful enough to get the job done.
The Roomba 890 has the usual modern features, like WiFi connectivity for easy scheduling, intelligent home voice control, and Roomba’s patented dirt detectors, which boost power in areas with a lot of dirt. The 890 will operate for about 90 minutes before it requires to be charged.
It will glide back to the charging base and get charged, but it won’t pick up where it left off. So, this model is best for homes with less space. The Roomba 890 cleans low-pile carpets and hardwood floors very well but has trouble with high-pile carpets and rugs.
If you have a bunch of vast carpets or rugs, you might need a vacuum with more power. It has rubber brushes to clean, which works well for long pet hair. The price of the Roomba 890, around $379.99, is about average for robot vacuums.
Roomba 690 Robot Vacuum
If you’re on a tight budget, this Roomba, which costs about $229.99, is the one to get. It has almost all the features you’d expect from a modern Roomba, like WiFi integration, compatibility with smart home devices, dirt detectors that make the vacuum work harder in dirty areas, and automatic docking and charging.
Like the 890, this vacuum won’t continue where it left off after being charged. With a good 90-minute run time, this shouldn’t be too much of an issue. The Roomba 690 does not have rubber agitators like the rest of the 600 series. Instead, it has brush rollers. The bristle brushes might be hard to use if your pet has long hair.
There are a few things wrong with the Roomba 690. For instance, its sensors for cliffs aren’t the best. This Roomba often thinks dark rugs are cliffs, so it might not clean a dark blue or brown rug. The Roomba 690 uses an older navigation system from the company, so it moves around the house randomly and inefficiently.
Also Read: How to Vacuum Between Car Seats
Roomba 860 Robot Vacuum
If you want a modern Roomba’s performance but don’t care about a smartphone app or voice control, you might want to look into the 860 vacua. It has the same motor and navigation system as the rest of the 800 series, but it doesn’t have WiFi. You can’t use your phone to schedule cleanings or look at cleaning maps.
It uses iAdapt navigation, which isn’t iRobot’s best way to get around. As with other 800 series phones, it tends to bump around the house somewhat unexpectedly. It has 5 times as much suction power as units in the 600 series.
It uses optical and acoustic sensors, like most new Roombas, to find top dirt spots. This model is great for homes with less space. Its battery only lasts for 60 minutes. It will automatically charge itself, but the robot won’t return to where it was.
The 860 is much better than older models at finding its way to the docking station and rarely gets lost on the way. Rubber agitators on the Roomba 860 bring the suction close to the floor and keep it from getting tangled up. It costs $399, which puts it in the price range for robot vacuums.