Expensive, even as a best value
With this said, the Roomba i3+ is missing a major portion of the smart features that the Roomba i7+ has, but this can be attributed to the truncated discount, which is about $200 at the time of writing this review.
The Roomba i3+ is the ideal robot vacuum for the person who wants their home vacuumed once a day with minimal effort, i.e. they need only empty the vacuum once each month.
About this robot vacuum
- Robot dimensions: 13.26” x “3.63 “ (WxH)
- Weight: 7.44 pounds
- Charging base dimensions: 12.2” x 15.1” x 19” (W x D x H)
- Warranty: One-year limited warranty
What we like
It picks up dirt like a pro
When we test robot vacuums in our lab, our cleaning gauntlet contains tight furniture legs, shelves, risers, and carpets. The Roomba i3+ did a decent job against them all.
Overall, it averaged around 11 grams of dirt per run, and these numbers put it in the top 10% of all robot vacuums we’ve ever tested, including its best-rated cousin, the Roomba i7+.
It’s worth noting that the Roomba i3+ also tackled pet hair well; during testing, its brushes never got tangled or clogged with hair.
It empties itself
If you already own a more traditional robot vacuum and are thinking about updating, the self-emptying charging base is going to be the biggest difference. Most robot vacuums have a charging base that’s four inches from floor to top. The base is a little more than foot-and-half tall, so it can’t really fit under shelves or tight nooks.
The Roomba i3+’s base contains a vacuum that suctions everything out of the robot unit and seals it in an allergen-proof bag. When it comes time for you to get involved by removing this bag from the base unit, we think you’ll be pleased that it self-seals, meaning you never need to see, smell, or touch anything unsavory, including pollen and pet dandruff.
iRobot claims that you only need to replace this allergen-proof bag once every 60 days, and based on our testing, we think this is accurate—if your Roomba is primarily picking up crumbs and dust. But, if you’re keeping clumps of pet hair at bay daily then you’ll most likely need to replace the bag more often.
You can’t scuff it (like other models)
The chassis of the Roomba i3+ is made of a textured gray plastic, and for long-term ownership, this is a smart choice. From an aesthetic standpoint, it doesn’t get dusty looking or covered in fingerprints like other, shiny robot vacuums may.
Of course this isn’t the Roomba i3+’s greatest advantage, but it is the icing on the cake.
What we don’t like
It’s not as smart as other Roomba models
The Roomba i3+ came out after iRobot’s Genius Home Intelligence update. However, at the time of our review, the Roomba i3+ does not have the smart map capabilities.
This means you can’t set up virtual barriers to protect sensitive areas. This may change with future software or firmware updates.
As for now, users can start, stop, and schedule the i3+ with the iRobot app. You can also start the i3+ with voice commands via Amazon Alexa and Google Home, and set up event-based automation in conjunction with smart home products on the IFTTT platform.
Its navigation needs improvement
Unlike high-end Roomba models, the i3+ lacks a top camera to aid in its navigation. This translates to missed areas during our testing. After putting the Roomba i3+ through a test run, areas near the edges of the room remained uncleaned.
What users are saying
We tested the iRobot Roomba i3+ within a month of its release, so there are few user reviews at this time.
However, for now it has a 4.3-out-of-5 star rating on iRobot’s website. Users like its powerful suction and the self-emptying feature. Users criticize its noisiness and also the seemingly random nature of its movement.
Should you buy iRobot Roomba i3+?
Yes, especially if you’ve ever emptied your robot vacuum and were disgusted by the plume of dust and hair.
The Roomba i3+ may be fairly expensive, but it’s hard to put a price tag on just not worrying about emptying your robot vacuum for a good long while.
However, if you’re looking for a model with all the bells and whistles, you should check out the iRobot Roomba i7+.
Meet the tester
Senior Manager of Lab Operations@ReviewedHome
Jonathan Chan currently serves as the Lab Manager at Reviewed. If you clean with it, it's likely that Jon oversees its testing. Since joining the Reviewed in 2012, Jon has helped launch the company's efforts in reviewing laptops, vacuums, and outdoor gear. He thinks he's a pretty big deal. In the pursuit of data, he's plunged his hands into freezing cold water, consented to be literally dragged through the mud, and watched paint dry. Jon demands you have a nice day.
Checking our work.
We use standardized and scientific testing methods to scrutinize every product and provide you with objectively accurate results. If you’ve found different results in your own research, email us and we’ll compare notes. If it looks substantial, we’ll gladly re-test a product to try and reproduce these results. After all, peer reviews are a critical part of any scientific process.Shoot us an email