Robot Vacuum Maintenance: How To Maintain Robotic Vacuum?

Robot vacuum cleaners have become very popular, but the one thing that doesn’t get discussed much is how to maintain them.

The maintenance required for your robot vacuum is very different from your normal vacuum cleaner. It’s not harder, but there are a few things you should do to keep your robot vacuum running for years.

We’ll list the steps and procedures you should be taking to clean and get the maximum benefit from your robot vacuum.

Robot Vacuum Maintenance Schedule

To maintain your robot vacuum, there are a few parts that need to be replaced or cleaned every so often. Here is a chart to help you know when you should be doing these maintenance items.

ItemCleanReplace
Battery2 To 4 Years
Air FilterMonthlyEvery 3 To 6 Months
Beater BrushesMonthlyYearly
Side BrushesMonthlyYearly
Side Brush MotorWhen Damaged
SensorsMonthlyWhen Damaged
DustbinMonthlyWhen Damaged
Front BumperMonthlyWhen Damaged
Charging BaseMonthlyWhen Damaged
Charging PortsMonthlyWhen Damaged
WheelsMonthlyWhen Damaged
Software UpdatesCheck Monthly

Battery Maintenance

The battery in robot vacuums don’t last forever, nor do anything that uses a battery.

For best results, you should replace the battery in your robot vacuum every 2 to 4 years.

The battery does not need to be cleaned and to keep it going strong you should keep your robot vacuum on the base charging station when you’re not using. Unplugging your robot vacuum when it’s not in use is not recommended, as the charging base will turn on and off as the robot vacuum needs to keep its battery life regulated.

Here is a post on replacing a Roomba battery.

Air Filter Cleaning & Replacement

Your robot vacuum will have an air filter that needs to be replaced or cleaned depending on what type of filter you have.

Most robot vacuums have a filter that can’t be washed, but you can blow it off with a duster and get a few more months out of it.

Blow and clean the air filter monthly. Replace the filters every 6 months at the max.

If you pets or allergies, you should replace the filter in your robot vacuum more often.

The filter on your robot vacuum is often located on or near the dustbin. No tools are needed to remove them, they pop off.

Beater Brush Clean & Replacement

The beater brush, or also called beater bar, are the rotating brushes under your robot vacuum.

These brushes are bad about getting hair wrapped around them and wearing out over time. The more you use these brushes, the more they wear and the shorter and less effective they become at cleaning your floors.

Hair wrapped around beater brush

It’s best that you clean these brushes from hair and debris monthly. To clean the brushes on your robot vacuum, you need scissors to cut the hair and dirt free. Then rinse the brushes under the sink and let them dry overnight.

These brushes need to be replaced every year, as they do get shorter over time from all the cleaning. Shorter brushes can’t reach as deep into the carpet fibers.

Side Brushes Clean & Replace

The side brushes on robot vacuums are used to funnel dirt into the suction area and to clean corners.

These side brushes often get tangled in hair and needs to be removed and cleaned monthly.

Just like the beater brushes, they should be replaced yearly as they get shorter over time and wear out.

Side Brush Motor

The side brush motor can wear out over time and stop working.

Sometimes water, dirt or pet waste can get to the connections and keep it from working. There is no cleaning you can do without special tools, but should be replaced when it stops working.

We go over cleaning, fixing, and maintenance for side brushes in the post here.

Sensors Clean & Replace

Your robot vacuum uses all kinds of sensors to help it navigate and know where cliffs are.

The sensors are located under the robot vacuum, on the front bumper, and even on top. Usually, anywhere you see shiny plastic or a clear window is a sensor.

About the only sensor you shouldn’t touch is the LiDAR, but remove any cobwebs and dust that may be blocking its view.

You only need to wipe these sensors down with a clean, wet rag. If they’re extra dirty then a rag with rubbing alcohol can be used.

Dustbin Clean & Replace

The dustbin holds all the dirt and dust your robot vacuum picks up.

The dustbin often holds the air filter and vacuum motor too.

You should clean the dustbin every month and replace it when it becomes damaged. A hole in the dustbin, suction motor not working, or air filter not seating properly are reasons to get a new dustbin.

To clean the dustbin empty its contents in the trash. Remove the filter if it has one. Then blow out the dustbin.

If your dustbin doesn’t have the motor inside of it, you can rinse it under the sink and let it dry overnight. Otherwise, wipe it down with a damp rag.

Front Bumper Clean & Replace

The front bumper of your robot vacuum lets it know it hit something and needs to turn around.

While this bumper seems simple, you should still clean it. Remove any hair and debris from it that may keep it from moving.

Also, wipe it down as there are sensors on them that are used to determine if the robot vacuum is about to hit something; if your robot vacuum seems to slow down a little before hitting something, it’s the sensors in the front bumper that do that.

Charging Base Clean & Replace

The most overlooked part of a robot vacuum is the charging base.

You need to clean this monthly, especially since many robot vacuums don’t start cleaning until they’re completely off the base.

Wipe down the base and clean it’s charging pads. Wipe down the sensors and make sure no dust is sitting on them.

If you’re having trouble with your robot vacuum not charging or finding it’s way home, this post can help.

Charging Ports

Not only should you clean the charging ports on the base station, but also the ports on your robot vacuum.

These shiny metal pads get dirty quickly, and the best way to clean them is with rubbing alcohol and a wet rag.

If these charging ports get too dirty, the robot vacuum won’t charge or have a hard time finding its base station even though it’s right over it.

Wheels Clean And Replace

The wheels on your robot vacuum tend to get hair and dust stuck around them, especially at the axle.

You can cut the hair free and wipe the dust away.

The tracks on the robot vacuum can also collect small items and, when stuck, drag it across your home. The one thing that gets stuck really bad in robot vacuum wheels is dog poop.

You should clean your wheels monthly and only replace them when they’re damaged.

Software Updates

Robot vacuum manufacturers are always releasing new updates for robot vacuums.

Many of these updates are automatic and nothing for you to do. While a few will require your attention.

Every month, you should open your robot vacuum app and see if there are any updates.

These updates could be to fix a bug and make your robot vacuum clean better, or security updates.