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Mai Pham
November 12, 2022

Like any mobile electronic device, Roomba robot vacuums have batteries and their performance can be impacted by the batteries. Knowing how to care for your Roomba and its batteries will prolong their lifespans. But the contradicting advice about leaving the Roomba plugged in can make us confused. Should I leave Roomba plugged in?

You should always leave your Roomba robot vacuum plugged in if you plan to use it frequently. Having your Roomba plugged in all the time doesn’t negatively impact its battery life. However, if you are not using it for a long time (more than a few weeks or months), you should put your Roomba in ship mode or even remove the battery and store it in a cool and dry area. In this case, you also need to charge your Roomba at least once every 6 months to avoid losing the battery’s properties.

Read on to know why you should leave your Roomba plugged in, when you should put it in ship mode, and other easy tips to maintain its battery life.

Should I Leave The Roomba Plugged In: Impact On Its Battery Life

Roomba being charged

Roomba robot vacuums that are s, j, i, e, and 900 Series use lithium-ion batteries. Lithium-ion batteries are considered to have no memory effect. This means if these batteries are recharged repeatedly when the batteries haven’t run out, they will not gradually lose usable capacity (hold less charge).

Other Roomba robot vacuums use nickel metal hydride batteries. These batteries have memory effects. It means to prolong its lifespan, you need to let it run until the batteries die before recharging it.

The Roomba manufacturer recommends always keeping your robot vacuum plugged in so that it can be ready whenever you want to use it. Having your robot vacuum always at 100% helps to save charging time for every cleaning (as the battery doesn’t run out in the middle of the cleaning cycle) and maintains the battery’s properties and characteristics.

With both types of batteries, leaving your Roomba plugged in even after it is fully charged doesn’t damage its battery. Once it is fully charged, it automatically switches to a low charging mode to prevent overcharging.

When Should You Unplug Your Roomba?

There is no harm in keeping your Roomba plugged in when not in use. But if you are not using it for a long time (like for a month), it is better to unplug it, put it on ship mode, and store it safely.

If you are only away for a few days or a week, I strongly recommend keeping your robot vacuum charged and running daily on a schedule. You can avoid the hassle of charging it, unplugging it, putting it on ship mode, or even removing the battery and finding another cool, dry place to store it. And once you are back, your house will be spot-cleaned.

6 Easy Tips To Maintain Roomba Battery

Now that leaving the Roomba plugged in all the time doesn’t drain the battery life, there are easy-to-follow tips and notes to maintain and care for its battery.

Use Roomba indoors at a temperature of 0 to 40 Celsius degrees

The Roomba robot vacuum is designed for indoor use. You should never use it outdoors, in a construction or production area, on top of furniture, etc. Using your Roomba in an environment that is too cold or too hot will greatly impact the battery and make the robot vacuum malfunction.

Keep the dock away from heat sources

iRobot dock

Like any electronic device that uses a battery, excessive heat can damage the robot vacuum’s battery.

The dock must be kept in a cool and dry place and away from any heat source. You don’t want to risk having your robot vacuum battery explode because of charging it next to a heat source.

Please make sure you also keep it away from direct sunlight as the heat from the sun can damage the battery.

Keep your Roomba charged on the dock when not in use

As keeping the Roomba plugged in doesn’t impact the battery life, you shouldn’t remove it from the dock if you plan to use it frequently. Also, make sure you don’t just store your robot vacuum there, plenty of vacuuming will keep its battery life healthy.

Use the Roomba often

Roomba cleaning

One thing about electronic devices is that you will need to use them often so that their batteries will not be damaged.

Make sure you run your Roomba robot vacuum often, at least 2 – 3 times per week to keep the battery at its peak performance all the time.

Keep the Roomba robot clean

If your Roomba gets clogged with hair or debris, it will strain to work harder than usual and exhaust the battery faster. 

Therefore, after every cleaning, make sure you clean the dustbin and clean the brushes once every month.

Remove the battery if not use the vacuum for a long time

Robot vacuum batteries can cause a fire if being stored, shipped, or used wrongly. Therefore, if you are not home and you need to turn off the power source, make sure you also remove the battery from your Roomba and store it in a cool dry area.

You can even put it in ship mode (turning it off completely or even applying tape over the battery contacts) before storing it.

Use iRobot batteries only

Once something is broken, especially for pricey electronic devices, we always find replacements and hope to get a cheap one that can perform 80% to 90% of the original one.

However, with a robot vacuum, using third-party accessories can make those parts incompatible with the machine and cause more issues with it. What’s more, as the robot vacuum battery is explosive, you don’t want to risk trying to match the battery from a third party and your current robot vacuum.

Fully charge the battery before use

Roomba is being charged

If your robot vacuum does not have a lithium-ion battery, it can develop a memory where it holds less charge each time if being charged repeatedly with less than 100% battery.

Therefore, it is even more crucial for you to fully charge the battery before use. Depending on the battery type (lithium-ion battery or nickel metal hydride), you can choose to have it vacuumed until the battery dies (for nickel metal hydride battery) or until it finishes cleaning (for lithium-ion battery) before charging it again.

With both battery types, you should fully charge the battery at least once every 6 months to ensure its optimal performance.

About the Author

I am a working mother who more than often prefer to come home and rest rather than doing house chores. I am passionate about simplifying house chores to live and enjoy life more.

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