5 Best Robot Vacuums for Hardwood Floor of 2019

Hardwood floors require a bit of extra TLC and a robot vacuum is a no-brainer if you are looking for a hassle-free way to keep your floors impeccable at all times. Yet, with so many options out there, how do you pick the right robot?

We put several robo vacs to the test and after spending a lot of time comparing their performance, we settled for five that made a good impression. Without further ado, here are our recommendations for the best robot vacuum for hardwood floor.

Top Pick
iRobot Roomba 690 robot vacuum for hardwood floors

iRobot Roomba 690

  • Comes with wi-fi connectivity, Alexa compatibility, and ability to schedule cleans
  • Spends more time cleaning high foot-traffic areas
  • Multi-surface brushes are ideal for cleaning delicate hardwood floors
  • Dirt detect technology to gently but thoroughly clean dirt-prone zones

Why Do We recommend it?

The iRobot Roomba 690 is our pick for the best robot vacuum for hardwood floors. This might not be the smallest or sleekest robot but we were blown away by its cleaning performance. With a 3-stage cleaning system and multi-surface brushes, this Roomba picks up small and large debris with impressive prowess.

Fitted with Patented Dirt Detect sensors, the robot automatically spends more time on dirtier areas in the house. In the spirit of the iRobot brand, the 690 comes with wi-fi connectivity and is compatible with Alexa. If you are looking to snag a faithful cleaner at a pocket-friendly price, the Roomba 690 is a smart choice.

Budget Pick
ILIFE A4s robot vacuum for hardwood floors

ILife A4s

  • The tangle-free rolling bristle brush is gentle and picks up all sorts of debris from hardwood floors
  • It is quite small and rarely gets stuck underneath furniture
  • Able to navigate different types of floors
  • Has a Max mode option for maximum pickup
  • Has a long battery life of up to  140 minutes

Why Do We recommend it?

Despite being a no-frills robot vacuum, the iLife A4s delivers dependable cleaning performance. Powered by a patented third-generation CyclonePower cleaning system, this bot seamlessly adjusts to different floor types, picking up cereals, pet hair, kitten litter, and food particles off the floor.

With its low profile and smart sensors, it navigates low-clearance furniture with outstanding ease. This little gizmo gives you a massive 140 minutes of cleaning time and lets you schedule cleans and select different cleaning modes depending on your needs. As our budget pick, the iLife A4s allows you to sit back and enjoy spotless floors without breaking the bank.


Best Robot Vacuum For Hardwood Floor Buying Guide

best robot vacuum for wood floors

Hardwood floors add a touch of class and warmth to any home but they also come with extra cleaning demands. A robot vacuum helps with those ‘in-between’ cleaning jobs and is a smart investment if you want to extend the life and preserve the beauty of your wooden floors.

While most robot vacuums clean bare floors and carpet satisfactorily, some do a better job of picking up dirt from wooden floors and ace at deep cleaning to remove any pet hairs stuck in between wood planks. In the end, the best vacuum for hardwood floors should be tough on dirt and gentle on your precious floors.

If you are shopping for a robot vacuum for hardwood floors and are wondering where to start, read our helpful tips to make a smart decision. Here are some things to look for:

Auto-Adjusting Functionality

best robot vacuum for hardwood

More and more robot vacuums are starting to feature an auto-adjusting head that, well, automatically adapts to different floor types. What this means is when the robot detects hardwood floors, it rises up so that the brush slightly touches the floor.

This way, the vacuum can clean bare floors without causing any damage with its bristles. The iRoomba 690 and 890, as well as the iLife A4s, are great choices if you are looking for premium vacuums with auto-adjusting functionality.

Brush Type

roomba for hardwood floors

The type of brush will determine how well the robot can lift and clean dirt. We have to appreciate the fact that picking small debris such as sugar, flour, kitty litter, and food particles from bare floors is no easy feat. Since most vacuums come with bristled brushes, they end up scattering dirt all over the place, resulting in longer cleaning times or less than stellar cleaning results.

Another problem with bristled brushes is that they can end up leaving unsightly scratches on your polished hardwood floors. The truth is, though, you might not be able to avoid bristled brushes altogether because they are so common in robot vacuums.

That being said, the iRobot Roomba 890, our pick for the best upgrade robot vacuum, has set new standards by ditching the traditional bristled brush for counter-rotating rubber brushes known as extractors. These angled brushes are not only easier on hardwood floors but they also pick up pet hair and debris with greater efficiency.

The Roomba 890 does not come cheap but if you do not have the budget for a premium robot, a vacuum with soft bristles can still get the job done. The iLife A4S, for example, combines side brushes with soft bristles and a patented CyclonePower cleaning system that delivers extremely strong suction for thorough cleaning of the most delicate hardwood floors.

Tangle-Free Capability

best roomba for hardwood floors

A robot vacuum whose brushes do not tangle easily is ideal whether you have hardwood floors or carpet. However, you need to be extra careful with wooden floors because brushes wrapped in pet and human hair are a haven for smaller debris that can gradually scratch floors and the damage can add up in a major way.

The Roomba 890 and iLife A4S are marketed as having tangle-free brushes and for the most part, going by our test results, this is true. Some hair and debris still get caught in the brushes but you should be able to pull these out with a little effort.

In addition to these considerations, other general factors to think about when shopping for a robot vacuum are:

Pets Or No Pets

robot vacuum hardwood

Most robot vacuums on the market will clean pet fur with relative ease but others simply do a better job. If you do not have pets around or your furry friend is not a heavy shedder and you are just looking for simple hardwood floor maintenance, a no-frills cleaner such as Eufy’s BoostIQ RoboVac 11S might suffice.

For pet-heavy households, you might want to look at something with more vacuuming prowess such as the Neato Botvac D3. This D-shaped cleaner can clean tight corners and along walls (favorite places for pet fur to hide) better than round-shaped vacuums. On the higher end of the scale is the Roomba 890 whose rubber extractors also earn an excellent rating for picking up hair.

Budget

best roomba for wood floors

Whether you are shopping on a budget or are willing to splurge a bit, there is something for you. That being said, the more expensive a vacuum is the more features it generally comes with. You really get value for your money with these.

For example, the Roomba 890 and the Neato Botvac have a higher price tag but these come with extras such as room mapping technology, for a more methodical cleaning pattern. On the other hand, iLife’s A4s and Eufy’s Robovac are good picks if you are looking for a general maintenance cleaner that will not break the bank.


Best Robot Vacuum For Hardwood Floor of 2019

1. iRobot Roomba 690 - Our Top Recommended

A relatively autonomous vacuum that balances efficiency and tech with cost-effectiveness is not too much to ask for, is it? Well, the iRobot Roomba 690 proves that you can indeed have it all.

Right out of the box, we were able to download the iRobot app, which features a clean, minimalist, and straightforward interface, and quickly connected it to the robot. From the app, you can kick off a cleaning session immediately but there is also an option to schedule weekly cleanups.

I love that even when I am away from home, I can still monitor things like how much of the house the robot has cleaned, how much more to go, and battery status right from my smartphone. I could also start a cleaning session with Alexa or Google Assistant.

This cleaner comes with the standard features we have come to expect from robot vacuums including edge sweeping and spot cleaning. It also comes with multi-surface brushes for cleaning different floor types and an auto-adjusting head that adapts its height upward when cleaning hardwood to avoid scratching the floors.

What really impressed us was this Roomba’s ability to automatically detect a high foot-traffic zone such as our kitchen and spend a little more time there picking up food particles and other debris, which was surprisingly a lot.

iRobot Roomba 690 robot vacuum cleaner for hardwood floors

The robot cleaned smaller debris off the hard floor with close to 99% pick up rate. It cleaned our low-pile carpet pretty well too. The only downside is that pet hair got stuck in between the wheels and tangled up in the roller and side brushes and I had to pull it out to keep the robot from stalling.

This vacuum runs for 90 minutes max before making its way back to the charging dock. The iLife A4s’ battery life is much longer but in about 1 hour and 16 minutes, the Roomba left the floors in our 1,500-sqft apartment squeaky clean.

Overall, the Roomba 690 might not leave carpets spotless and should not replace a regular vacuum for deep cleaning but it excels in cleaning hardwood floors. This one is a great choice if you are looking for a steadfast cleaner that will give you value for your money.

Pros

  • Comes with wi-fi connectivity, Alexa compatibility, and ability to schedule cleans
  • Spends more time cleaning high foot-traffic areas
  • Multi-surface brushes are ideal for cleaning delicate hardwood floors
  • Dirt detect technology to gently but thoroughly clean dirt-prone zones

Cons

  • It is comparably higher and can get stuck under really low furniture
  • Brushes are not tangle-free so pet hair can get trapped easily

2. ILife A4s – Budget Pick

ILIFE A4s robot vacuum for hardwood floors review

We were a bit skeptical about the iLife A4s given that it is a budget robot vacuum. However, this little bot had some pleasant surprises in store for us. First, set up was a cinch and since there is no app to download, we were able to put it to the test within a few minutes of unpacking.

Boasting a relatively low profile, the A4s moves underneath low furniture with impressive ease. Not once did it get stuck under the couch or the raised kitchen cabinet. That being said, this is a no-frills vacuum and it lacks standard features such as wi-fi connectivity and room mapping.

You will have to use the accompanying remote control to schedule cleans and select cleaning modes whether that is spot cleaning, edge cleaning or deep cleaning for high-foot traffic areas. I like that this robot goes back to the charging dock on its own, which makes life that much easier.

For its size, the A4s does a surprisingly good job of adjusting to different types of floors. To be fair, on the first run it had a hard time climbing the high-pile carpet in the living room but it adjusted pretty quickly on subsequent runs.

ILIFE A4s robot vacuum cleaner for hardwood floors

In addition to the side brushes, the vacuum features a tangle-free rolling bristled brush. We noticed that the vacuum picked up almost all the debris on our hardwood floors but left some pet fur and food particles on the carpet. It took about three passes to get the carpet clean. The good thing is the dustbin is quite large so you do not have to worry about emptying it every day.

What really sets this little minion apart is its stellar battery life. You get a whopping 140 minutes of cleaning time; not many budget vacuums give you that. It is also relatively quiet and only starts to get loud after several runs but this mostly happens when the bin is full.

Admittedly, there might be better choices for cleaning high-pile carpets but all things considered, the iLife A4s is a solid pick if you are shopping on a budget for a robot vacuum for hardwood floors.

Pros 

  • The tangle-free rolling bristle brush is gentle and picks up all sorts of debris from hardwood floors
  • It is quite small and rarely gets stuck underneath furniture
  • Able to navigate different types of floors
  • Has a Max mode option for maximum pickup
  • Has a long battery life of up to  140 minutes

Cons

  • Lack of wi-fi connectivity means you cannot schedule clean-ups when you are away
  • It can tend to run around randomly unless you set it to a specific cleaning mode

3. iRobot Roomba 890 – Upgrade Pick

iRobot Roomba 890 robot vacuum cleaner for hardwood floors review

After testing the Roomba 690 and coming out really impressed by its vacuuming prowess, we were excited to see how the Roomba 890, a more high-end option would perform.

According to the manufacturer, this vacuum delivers up to five times more suction power for an improved pickup rate and for sure, the 890 left our floors spotless even in places that tend to be dirtier like the kitchen and hallways.

That being said, this robot seemed to struggle with climbing carpets despite having an auto-adjusting head that is supposed to adapt to different floor types. Instead, it would knock against the edges and every once in a while I had to assist it to get onto the carpet and do its thing.

On the upside, I appreciate the counter-rotating rubber brushes on this robot, which the manufacturer says are powered by the patented AeroForce cleaning system. This brush design is different from the bristled brushes I have seen in most other vacuums. Compared to bristled brushes, rubber brushes are friendlier to hardwood floors.

iRobot Roomba 890 robot vacuum for hardwood floors

Another interesting feature is the room mapping technology. What this means is the robot uses an in-built camera to take pictures of each room in your house during the initial cleaning session, stores the images, and builds a map of your home.

The advantage of room mapping is that in subsequent cleans, the robot relies on those images to vacuum methodically (as opposed to waltzing around randomly). The result is that the robot hits almost every spot in a room and if it runs out of charge midway, it goes back to its dock to recharge and then picks up from where it left.

Like other iRobot vacuums, you can operate the Roomba 890 from your smartphone after downloading the app. You can also use Alexa or Google Assistant to ask the bot to get to work. Alternatively, you can bypass the app and use the buttons on the bot to start cleanups and select cleaning modes.

Overall, the Roomba 890 gives you value for money and it is an excellent pick if you are looking for a robot vacuum that balances tech with high-efficiency cleaning.

Pros

  • It has extra suction power for improved cleaning performance on hardwood and carpet
  • Multi-surface cleaning brushes stay in contact with different kinds of floors
  • Dirt detect sensors help the robot to spend more time cleaning dirty surfaces
  • Room mapping technology helps the robot to clean autonomously
  • Comes with wi-fi connectivity and is compatible with Alexa

Cons

  • Sometimes has a hard time climbing carpets

4. Eufy Boost IQ Robovac 11S

eufy 11S robot vacuum cleaner for hardwood floor

Eufy’s Boost IQ Robovac 11s lacks the bells and whistle that we have come to appreciate in smart robot vacuums. For this reason, we were not sure what to expect from this teeny robot but once we unleashed it to do its thing, we were treated to extremely clean floors, all done relatively fast and with surprisingly little noise.

Without an option for wi-fi connectivity, all you are left with is a remote control. There is a lot you can do with it though including scheduling cleans at specific times and selecting any one of the cleaning modes, which include edge, spot, and single room cleaning. Sometimes, I just needed general cleaning and for that, I simply choose the auto-clean mode.

For such a small robot vacuum, the Robovac’s pickup rate was top notch, something that definitely has to do with its massive suction capacity of 13000pa and BoostIQ technology, which prompts the vacuum to release more suction power on carpets and around dirt-prone zones in the house.

eufy 11S robot vacuum for hardwood floor review

As mentioned, this nifty robot is quieter than most vacuums we have tested. My youngest was actually able to sleep through her afternoon naps with the robot waltzing in the background. The only downside is the dustbin seems to fill up quite fast and I had to empty it twice during each cleaning session but this might have to do with the fact that our pets shed a lot.

If you do not mind forgoing features such as wi-fi connectivity and room mapping in exchange for cleaning prowess, then Eufy’s Robovac 11s might be a good sport.

Pros

  • Patent BoostIQ technology gives this vacuum powerful suction to clean all floor types
  • Quiet operations
  • Super thin and easily fits underneath low-clearance furniture

Cons 

  • Lacks wi-fi connectivity and room mapping technology
  • The dustbin is relatively small and needs regular changing
  • It is a little overzealous and might try gobbling up cables and other items blocking its way 

5. Neato Botvac D3

Neato Botvac D3 robot vacuum cleaner for hardwood floors

For a budget robot vacuum, the Neato Botvac D3 sure does hold its own. Many of its features such as room mapping, wi-fi connectivity, and compatibility with Alexa are at par with those found in higher-end vacuums such as the Roomba 890.

I have always found the circular shape of robot vacuums to be quite impractical for cleaning tight corners and navigating straight edges and furniture legs. That Neato decided to adopt a D-shape for their vacuum robots is quite impressive.

The first time we set up the Botvac, it made short back and forth movements as it scanned the surroundings. It then moved to the edges to map the room and began cleaning in a methodical zig-zag pattern, hitting most spots in any given room. This bot also maps out entryways so each time it detected a door it would enter and clean the room with zero human intervention.

Although this robot does not have an option for selecting cleaning modes, I love that it automatically makes several passes across the center of a room, where foot traffic is the highest, to completely eliminate debris and dust. With its large core brush, this cleaner covers a lot of ground in one pass.

Neato Botvac D3 robot vacuum for hardwood floors

As far as cleaning performance goes, Neato’s robot vacuum did a pretty good job of picking up almost all of the kitty litter, pet fur, and debris on our bare floors. When I looked underneath furniture in the living room, kitchen, and bedroom, I was surprised to find the bot had gobbled up all the dust bunnies that like to hide there.

However, it was kind of disappointing to see the robot struggle to clean the carpet and various rugs. In fact, it had to do about five passes to really bust the debris and pet fur on the carpets. Probably due to the battery capacity, this vacuum seemed to drag itself a lot. It took about 180 minutes to clean the house and the robot needed to recharge every 60 minutes.

In spite of these setbacks, the Botvac D3 does get the job done especially for houses with mostly hard floors. That being said, there are better options for pet-heavy and carpeted homes.

Pros

  • Room mapping technology allows autonomous cleaning of an entire house level
  • Wi-fi connectivity lets you schedule cleans every day of the week and at any time
  • Easily control the robot from your smartphone, Echo, Alexa, Google Home, and smartwatch
  • Pocket-friendly fully smart and autonomous robot vacuum
  • Moves methodically to clean every part of a room

Cons 

  • Lacks edge-brushes and cleaning mode options
  • Limited cleaning time of 60 minutes

Conclusion

While all the vacuums we tested performed quite well, the iRobot Roomba 690 certainly takes the prize home as the best robot vacuum for hardwood floor.

This robot balances pocket-friendliness with cleaning efficiency. It comes fully equipped with all the features we have come to expect from a smart vacuum including wi-fi connectivity, room navigation, scheduling and dual-surface brushes to navigate and thoroughly clean all floor types. 

It might not be the ultimate choice for fully carpeted households but with a pickup rate of almost 99 percent on hardwood floors, few robots can match the Roomba 690’s all-round vacuuming prowess.