Robot Mop

iRobot Roomba Floor Washer

Meet my robot mop.  She’s short and round and cleans my floors for free – 24/7,  if asked.  She never complains, has completely freed my back from having to sweep, vacuum and mop large amounts of tile floor, and sits quietly in the corner when not in use.

My parents have used an iRobot vacuum for over a year now and have raved about it since they brought “her” home.  She’s been dubbed “Bridget” by my niece and they love to watch her roam the floors sucking up any dirt she might find.

So, while visiting my parents over the holidays, Dad and I got into a discussion about the one he has in his garage, too, to keep his workshop area clean.  This led to quite some time investigating the iRobot site and my “oohing” and “ahhing” over all of the cool products – especially the robot floor washer.

You see, when you live in Arizona, tile floors are a pretty big deal.  They help keep your house cool and are easier to keep clean with all of the dust that floats through our air and, well, I think they’re just part of our normal desert decor.  They look really cool – until you have to clean them.  And, of course, I had to get a nice, light beige floor tile.  It can take me well over three hours a week just to do the tile floors, between sweeping or vacuuming and then mopping.

If you “ooh” and “ahh” over something at just the right time, my parents take note.  They love to make the lives of their children easier and they are special gift givers.  They put a lot of thought into everything they do and buy, especially for others.  When a package showed up at my door from iRobot – I knew immediately what it was!  (Thank you, Mom and Dad!!)

I was surprised to receive it so soon after the holidays, though, having already received a very useful and well-thought out gift – but….NEVER LOOK A GIFT ROBOT IN THE MOUTH, right?

I charged up the little angel and put it to work the next day.  A quiet hum could be heard as she scoured one room after the other.  I have a LOT of tile floor and didn’t expect her to get very far before needing to be recharged.  I was pleasantly surprised to see she was able to do the entryway, a hallway, a bathroom, and part of the kitchen before needing to rest.  That little daredevil was ready to go after only three more hours of charging.

The tank must be a bladder setup and holds a surprising amount of water.  The dirty water tank was appropriately named as the water that poured out after cleaning was exactly that – dirty.  That floor washer sucks up the dirt so you don’t have to sweep first (although I did because…um…my floors hadn’t been swept in awhile and I didn’t want to choke the poor thing), scours the floor in circles, criss-cross patterns, and around the edges of the room, and then squeegees it dry.

The pros?  Easy to fill, easy to clean afterwards, does a large area in one cycle, and doesn’t require much floor cleaner soap.  I’ve had no issues with the battery life at all.  Keeping in mind I swept first, that robot mop sure managed to pick up some crumbs and stuff I’d somehow missed.

The cons?  Being round, she doesn’t do corners very well.  As I told my husband, I’d gladly finish off the corners for her in exchange for her doing most of the grunt work.  Seems a fair trade in order to regain three hours of my life each week.  She also doesn’t do laundry or windows but I’m not holding this against her.

My parents had their’s named by my niece and two of my three sons took an immediate interest in naming ours, as well.  (Son number three is a teenager who is just a bit over-focused on new girlfriend and upcoming learner’s permit test to notice that we have the thing at all).  My middle son calls our robot mop “Robo Hobo”.  My youngest calls her “Texas”.  I’m not sure why….

I call her “my new best friend”.