Robot vacuums can go over most rugs, so long as they’re not too thick or have something protruding from them, like rug fringe.
If you’re unsure about your particular rug, it’s always a good idea to check the manufacturer’s instructions to be safe.
In general, though, as long as your rug isn’t too thick or has any protruding bits, your robot vacuum should be able to handle it just fine.
One thing to keep in mind, however, is that robot vacuums aren’t always perfect. They may miss a spot here or there, so if you have a rug with a pattern, it’s possible that the vacuum will leave behind a few stray pieces of dirt.
Overall, though, robot vacuums are more than capable of cleaning most rugs.
Rugs To Avoid!
From what I've seen, robot vacuums and thick rugs or those with fringe often don't mix well. There's a real risk with fringe; it has a pesky tendency to get tangled around the vacuum's brushes, and that spells trouble for both your cherished rug and the vacuum itself. Personally, I'd be hesitant to let a robot vacuum anywhere near my favorite fringed rug!
If you have a rug with fringe, it’s best to vacuum with a normal vacuum cleaner or manually clean it. Canister vacuums, for example, are often a good choice for cleaning rugs with fringe.
If you have an expensive rug, something you don’t let people walk on, then you want to avoid having the robot vacuum going over it. Things can get trapped in the wheels and brushes of the robot vacuum, and it could damage sensitive rugs.
They’re Excellent At Cleaning Rugs
A robot vacuum will clean a rug just as well as it does carpet. The picture below is my first run of my Roomba on my carpeted floors.
You want to use robot vacuums with rotating brushes under them, some models have two, but at least one is needed for carpet fibers. Relying only on suction is not ideal for carpets and rugs.
The rotating brushes help to loosen dirt and debris that’s been ground into the fibers of the rug, and the vacuum’s suction will then pull all of that dirt and debris away.
This leaves you with a clean rug that looks and feels great.
Dark Colors Are No Problem
Yes, robot vacuums can work on dark color rugs.
In fact, they can work on any color rug, so long as the fibers are strong enough to withstand the vacuum’s brushes.
Where dark colors come into play is that it can confuse a few models of robot vacuums, as it will think that the dark color is a cliff. So, unless you have a solid black rug, it shouldn’t be a concern.
Robot vacuums can damage carpet fringe if they get tangled up in it.
The best way to avoid this is to keep the vacuum away from any areas with fringe.
Most of the LiDAR and camera navigation robot vacuums can be programmed to avoid certain areas of your home, like the carpet fringe. Some models are getting smart enough to avoid cords and dog waste too!
Overall, I would avoid having a robot vacuum and carpet with fringe, you either get rid of one or live with the fringe getting tangled and damaged over time.
Be Careful About Oriental Rugs
I’ve always admired the intricate beauty of Oriental rugs and recognize that they’re often both delicate and a significant investment.
Given this, I’d personally be quite wary of using a robot vacuum on one. The brushes might be too harsh for the delicate fibers, and, to be honest, these automatic cleaners might not give you the deep clean you’d want for such a prized item.
When it comes to something as special as an Oriental rug, I firmly believe in erring on the side of caution. In my opinion, the most prudent approach is to either vacuum them manually or splurge a bit on a professional cleaning service.