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How to Fix a Robot Vacuum

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Updated August 22, 2022

If you are new to the world of automated cleaning appliances, you may wonder how to fix a robot vacuum. Many of the best vacuums, after all, are premium robotic vacuums, and this type is susceptible to plenty of repair and maintenance issues. So what causes robot vacuums to require repairs, and how do you go about fixing various issues? Keep reading to find out.


  • Robot vacuums are susceptible to many repair issues, particularly if they have recently fallen from a ledge or stair due to malfunctioning cliff sensors.
  • Start troubleshooting your vacuum by checking on the roller brush and caster wheels and removing debris with a dry cloth if necessary.
  • You should also give the rechargeable battery a full charge, replacing it entirely via the battery compartment and charging dock if it won’t hold that charge.

What Causes Robot Vacuum Repair Issues?

Robot vacuums work alone, without any human help, and, well, accidents happen, particularly if you have not learned how to install and replace robot vacuum bumpers. They can fall off ledges, down the stairs, or simply become gummed up with debris. That said, you’ll want to know how to clean a robot vacuum correctly. In other words, these vacuums fall victim to plenty of nasty repair issues. However, before hiring a pro, consider some simple DIY troubleshooting steps and regular maintenance tips.

Insider Tip

Don’t forget to regularly clean or replace the air filters to increase the lifespan of the vacuum.

How to Troubleshoot and Fix Robot Vacuums

There is no universal fix here, as each vacuum differs, as does each specific issue. However, there are some common troubleshooting steps worth considering as you try to get your vacuum back in working order.

Check the Roller Brush and Wheels

The rolling brush and wheels head over all kinds of debris and even over some rough materials, like high-pile carpets and mountains of pet dander. Give the roller brush and wheels a close look, sussing out any stuck-on or tangled debris that is causing repair issues. After all, a long string can easily get caught up in these locations during use, among other items. Clean both the brush and wheels according to the manufacturer’s instructions and remove any large pieces of detritus.

Replace the Battery

Vacuum batteries are getting better all of the time, but they still use lithium-ion designs that are prone to failure, particularly after a few years of use. Remove the battery, and give it a full charge before trying to power on the vacuum again. No dice? It’s likely time for a replacement unit. Luckily, you should be able to get a new battery from the original manufacturer.

Clean the Sensors

If your robotic vacuum is navigating poorly and regularly bumping into items of furniture, it could just be dirty sensors. A vacuum’s sensors are typically located on the bottom and the sides. Take a clean microfiber cloth and give each sensor a gentle, yet thorough, cleaning.

STAT: All Roomba models can be operated by pressing the “Clean” button on the top while the Roomba is on the charging base, causing it to reverse off of the base and begin cleaning; or by manually carrying the Roomba to the room to be cleaned and pressing the button. (source)

Fixing a Robotic Vacuum FAQs

How to check a problem in a robot vacuum cleaner?

These appliances are prone to numerous issues, from faulty cliff sensors to a malfunctioning vacuum motor or drive motor. Perform some simple troubleshooting steps to suss out the cause of the problem before deciding on the next step.

Why is my Shark vacuum not charging?

If your Shark model vacuum is not charging, it is likely due to decreased battery life. Look into replacement batteries or contact customer service.

Where to get a robot vacuum repaired?

No matter the issue, be it malfunctioning cliff sensors or a broken clean button, you can bring your vacuum to various repair centers. Reach out to the manufacturer for more information.
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