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iRobot Roomba 980 review: Ideal for Pet Hair

I am so amazed by this pretty little bot! Ok, backdrop. I purchased this Roomba 980 because I was getting hardwoods on the entire floor level of the home. The wood is a shady color and because I knew EVERY piece of lint and dust would easily display up on my floor it would be almost intoxicating to me. With that being said I bought this little fella so that I would keep my sagacity. I wanted my floors to always stay clean or as clean as possible.

I describe through iRobot Roomba 980 Review and did some comparisons. This Roomba vacuum is my very first, it is a nice shape. Setup was simple, as the pointing is easy to explore.

The other thing I LOVE about the little robot is it cleans the area blanket. My son is always dropping crumbs from the cake, chips at the breakfast table which is sitting on an area carpet.

Before Roomba, I was having to clean off carpet constantly. Not anymore! The little bot takes care of that for me and the carpet never looked better. I have not had any problems with it finding its way back home.

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Design features

  • 44mm height and slim design for low height furniture
  • Large axis with good ground clearance over thresholds
  • “Self-cleaning” dual multi-surface brush system
  • Replaceable high-efficiency filter
  • 27-degree edge-sweeping brush
  • 1 x 353.1 x 91.4mm

The tried-and-trusted appearance of this robot vacuum is remarkably similar to many of the other robot cleaners I’ve experimented with before. There’s a large bump-rail, smooth and shiny finish, plus a smattering of buttons and sensors to help with controls.

Opposite some opponents, the Roomba 980 isn’t too high, offer it to clean clearly underneath and around furniture without compromise. Indeed, I’ve been happily watching the robot slip between chair legs and under tables with comfort.

This design makes it perfect for cleaning hard-to-reach locations like under beds, in and around the kitchen table and much more besides. Its large axis also allows it to ride and pass over thresholds and small barrier with comfort.

A side-sweeping brush sits along one side, which qualifies the bot to clean close to the edges of rooms despite its round shape. I’ve seen other robot vacuums keep two brushes in this genre, but Roomba 980 began to deal with the one brush.

The model highlight is the twofold multi-surface brushes, installed underneath. Like the Samsung VR7000 Powerbot, I tested currently, such kind of brush doesn’t design with usual bristles, kinda processed rollers that are not only capable of managing various surface types but also are worthy for “self-cleaning”.

These brushes don’t get articulate up with hair and fur or thick up as easily as usual bristles, thus offering the robot to clean for longer without the need to manually untruss – which is just what you want from your robotic cleaning servant.

The Roomba 980 comes with a concise charging base included – which needs to be installed against a wall, and not in a critical spot – that the robot automatically returns to recharge when desiderate. I found out that the dock could easily get banged out of the way, though, so keep an eye on it.

The Roomba 980 also offers complete a pair of battery-powered virtual walls, which you can install to stop the robot proceeding – places flowerpot, places where it’ll get affix, where you keep your fine china, and the like.

There’s no remote control for this model, however, instead, this robot is intended to work with the following smartphone app or via the eminent and easy-to-use buttons on top.

The large silver “CLEAN” button duals as the power button and sends the bot into an automatic cleaning schedule. The home button returns it back to the charging dock for charging. The spot cleaning button does just that – sends the bot shuts off to clean a particular spot.

Setup, cleaning cycles, and settings

  • Automated cleaning routines
  • Up to 2 hours cleaning time

Setup of the iRobot Roomba 980 is straightforward. Plug in the home base station, charge the robot for a while, then download the iRobot Home app from the app store for iOS or Android and follow the instructions.

If you don’t already have one, this installation procedure requires the creation of a new iRobot account and access to your Wi-Fi network. I found this installation knowledge wasn’t quite as seamless as I’ve experienced with other robot vacuums.


Once done, the app gives access to multiple settings that allow for both manual and automated control of the robot’s cleaning system. My first job was to schedule a daily clean. You can set a specific time each day, seven days a week to automatically send the bot out for a cleaning cycle. I am satisfied to be able to twinge these settings to my taste.

The standard automated cleaning mode orders the iRobot Roomba 980 out to vacuum every area of your home that it can go off. This is an all rooms cleaning mode similar to that I’ve seen with previous robot vacuums. You can stop the bot cleaning a room or area by using the provided virtual barriers or by simply closing a door, otherwise, it will get everywhere it can to clean until the cleaning job is done.

Obstacle detection and room cleaning

  • Visual Simultaneous Localization and Mapping (vSLAM) technology
  • Cliff sensors

The iRobot Roomba 980 comes with a number of sensors to uphold its smart mapping technology. This not only allows the robot vacuum to grasp out the areas it is cleaning but also to navigate any blockages that might come in its way.

I’ve watched as it’s made its way around toys left bestrewn around the floor and worked its way in-between and around furniture and chair legs.


Those sensors have a cliff detection system, which obstructs the robot from falling down stairs or over a steep drop.

The bump rail shape also means the robot can get close to the edges and seems to do so with aggressive force, slogging up against objects perhaps more enthusiastically than I’ve seen with other robot cleaners.

If you’re concerned about spanking household items then those virtual walls can be used to secure their surrounding field – albeit I didn’t have any issues with Roomba banging things over. 

Cleaning performance and suction power

  • Automatic adjustable suctions levels for different floor types
  • Dirt detection sensors to condense cleaning on garbage areas

The Roomba 980 is one of the strongest robot vacuum cleaners we’ve ever experienced. I am maddened by the suction levels and the cleaning works. Although it rarely missed some points, for the most part, this robo-vac provides a more-than- optimal clean.


I found that I vacate the dust tray on a daily or bi-daily basis, as well as cleaning dirt and debris from the filter. This itself is a superb telling tale of the cleaning works in a medium -sized.

A highlight of the cleaning action is the automatic changeable suctions level regulation. This allows the robot to sense the floor type it’s cleaning and adjusts suction power consequently. On the carpet, so, the Roomba 980 will absorb harder than on wooden or tiled floors. The sensors also detect fields that need extra effort and it will estimate for these spots during its cleaning cycles.

The dual brush system is notable but fruitful- sometimes a little too effective. I found the robot was rarely sucking up small kids’ toys or bits of paper (such as pages of a book that had dropped through the letterbox while it was cleaning) and either getting jammed up or just entrusting them inside its cleaning tray.

I also found this robot got affix more always than some of the other bots I’ve tested. Unless the floor is fully clear, it tends to get snagged on domestic items, whether that’s them getting stuck in the wheels or caught up in its brushes. This is partially user error, but equally shows the ability of this powerful cleaner. When it does get clogged app will display a notification along with a clear warning from the bot itself.

As I mention of all robot vacuum cleaners, the Roomba is well – but not an alternative for a traditional vacuum. Instead think of it as good for a swift daily clean of carpets, saving you time on your cleaning schedule.

If there are any cleaning hesitancy then the Roomba 980’s spot cleaning mode can provide special attention. Settle on the robot up by its carry handle and plonking it down in the area then pressing the spot cleaning button will send the Roomba out on a cleaning cycle of ever-increasing circles from the spot it started on. I found this didn’t work awfully well for messy areas near walls or narrow spaces, though.

iRobot vindicates the Roomba 980 is capable of running for up to 2 hours. During testing, I found it really requires to return to the charger or had completed cleaning the rooms it had entry to within a little under an hour.

The length of cleaning will vary according to the scheme of your house and the area to be cleaned, including the floor types. The settings can be adjusted to confirm the cleaning job is done thoroughly, even if the robot needs to return to its charging dock for some extra charge half-way through its cleaning cycle.

One disadvantage of powerful suction is the noise: the 980 is far from the quietest bot I’ve tested before. It also strokes out hot air as it passes by – which can be a bother if you’re in the room when it’s running. Of course, you can routine it to clean while you’re out of the house, which is a big part of the desire of owning a robot vacuum cleaner. 

App functionality and voice assistant supported

  • Compatible with Amazon Alexa and Google Home voice assistance
  • Scheduling, cleaning settings and suction adjustment in the smartphone app

As I’ve described on above, this robot is compactly powered by its attending smartphone app. There’s suction power, time scheduling, overall performance history and even Amazon Alexa and Google Home compatibility. That means you can use your audio to do cool stuff like ask your personal assistant where the Roomba is, what it’s doing, asking it to clean, stop and more.


For Alexa, that’s as easy as activating the iRobot Home skill in the Alexa app. For Google Home, you can search for the Roomba ability by clicking “explore” within the Google Home app then connecting your account.

The app also comprehended map data, to display which place of your home the robot has seen during working. Moreover, there’s cleaning history, including time spent cleaning and any errors the robot obstructed along the way.

After primary setup, especially with clean scheduling, I occasionally found the need to use the smartphone app. I did, however, have some issues with the app where it would haphazardly disconnect from the robot or notify it “could not talk to the Roomba via the cloud” – making it unworkable, although not touching its cleaning schedule.

During tempting, I hit a few issues like this that meant I had to uninstall the app and reinstall it, which was a disadvantage – but not the end of the world.

Carpet Cleaning

On carpet, the outcome is roughly the same. The 980 could perform the Roomba 805 and even the BotVac 85 that ran away as the best performing all around robot vacuum out of the 8.

It did fairly well in terms of plucking up rice and especially on mid-pile carpet.

You’ll observe that the side brushes will be throwing large debris but it was able to clean a majority of it but didn’t get it all in one pull. I just show this to you to show you how it performed in utmost conditions. 

Pet Hair Removal

For the pet hair test, Roomba ranked in the top middle of the pack with amazingly better performance on medium pile carpet where it came in second in picking up pet hair behind the DEEBOT N79S.

Bare Floor Cleaning

This robot would be great on cleaning dust molecule hardwood surfaces where certain vacuuming would be a job. With a low height of just 3.6 inches, it would be capable to clean under most furniture-like beds where dust can easily heap. 

Pros & Cons

Based upon a variety of Amazon verified customer reviews, the following features are Roomba 980 benefits:

  • Cleans quite well.
  • Wi-Fi connectivity.
  • Very prolix error reporting if it’s stuck.
  • Has a full dustbin, but you have to open the smartphone app or be in the nearby as the bot to know this.
  • App tells you the maintenance schedule and when things need to be replaced.
  • Customer Support.
  • Easily cleanable.
  • Astonishingly good runtime for both battery and dustbin.
Nothing is quite perfect, and the following features are Roomba 980 down sides:

  • The app needs a pile of work.
  • Logic flaws in the cleaning system.
  • Gets clogged too easily.
  • They need to either include more beacons or drop the price of them/limited in a range of virtual barrier to 10ft.
  • No real cloud connectivity, only one device can control the robot.
  • Auto performance mode doesn’t constantly work.


Question: What’s the size of the dustbin? Answer: The dustbin makes up the back portion of the robot. It is a sort of half-moon shape. At the widest point, it is 9 inches 5 inches deep and 2 1/4 inches tall not including the button that you use to remove the bin. Question: Is the battery replaceable? Answer: The rechargeable battery is removable and replaceable. Question: How long of the time to replace the filter, side brush and debris extractor? Answer: I currently have two Roombas cleaning my house and I have been washing my filters and exchange them out every week or so. I’ve had my Roombas for about 4 years and have never had to purchase new filters. Just carefully wash them and let them dry. Also, I’m about to change out my side brushes for the first time and I’m probably about to replace the batteries. Other than that negligible maintenance these little “Jetsons” like robots have performed cleanly. Question: What happens when it comes to stairs? Answer:  It backs up, sprints forward, scream, and jumps off before spread out its base jumper parachute. Question: Is the filter washable? Answer:  I have had the original HEPA filter on my 805 Roomba that worked as well as the recent version on a replacement AeroForce dustbin. The recent version arrives to have a fine polymer pre-filter for dust trapping and appears to be a higher quality filter overall. I slap it out with an air canister after each cleaning. Test it with a strong background light gradually and then blow with dilute bleach, absorb in Oxy-Clean for a few hours the dry over a household reflex that blows air that has been mildly ozonated.


Final Verdict

The iRobot Roomba 980 is one of the strongest bots that I’ve tested. Control automated cleaning is fascinating and this robot cleans well on a variety of surfaces – adjusting suction when it needs to – allowing it to deliver a useful and fruitful clean.

On the downside, it’s let down a little by a dirty app which often detaches from the robot or fails to connect with it. There’s also no accessory remote, while the addition of battery-powered virtual wall stations won’t suit all setups.

Small cause aside as per iRobot Roomba 980 Review, there’s a lot to like about this bot and the way it performs. It’s a no- chaos, no-nonsense cleaner with a tried-and-tested design that has elevated nicely over previous models.

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