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When MIT roboticists Colin Angle, Rodney Brooks, and Helen Greiner founded iRobot in 1990, they hardly would have imagined that, thirty years later, their creations would become known for revolutionizing household cleaning.

Today, the Roomba line of products can vacuum, clean, and even dispose of household dust, dirt, and grime with minimal human intervention. They can intelligently navigate around the house and even define restricted or no-go areas.

But with a growing line of products comes complexity and choice. Their selection can be daunting because the differences can be subtle.

In this article, we will compare two flagship lines of products in the Roomba intelligent robot series:

  • iRobot Roomba i3 vs iRobot Roomba i7
  • iRobot Roomba i3+ vs iRobot Roomba i7+

iRobot Roomba i3 vs iRobot Roomba i7: Comparison Table

ProductiRobot Roomba i3iRobot Roomba i7
Weight (pounds)7.447.44
Dust/ Dirt Capacity (L)13.5 oz13 oz
Type Of FiltrationNon HEPANon HEPA
Power10X of 600 series10X of 600 series
Warranty Length (months)1212
Noise Level (Db)~60~60
Included Tools And Attachments1 Home Base® Charging Station1 Extra High-Efficiency Filter1 North American Line Cord1 Home Base® Charging Station1 Extra High-Efficiency Filter1 Extra Side Brush
Charge Time (in mins)7590
Run Time90180
Battery1800 mAH Li-ion, DC14.4V1800 mAH Li-Ion, DC14.4V

iRobot Roomba i3

iRobot Roomba i3 (3150) Wi-Fi Connected Robot Vacuum Vacuum - Wi-Fi Connected Mapping, Works with Alexa, Ideal for Pet Hair, Carpets

The Roomba i3 is iRobot’s most basic model of the intelligent “i” series, which includes i3, i3+, i7, i7+, i9, and more. This set of vacuum robots can map out your home in intelligent rectangular paths that help to clean your home in a more organized way.

Apart from Smart Navigation, the i3 also has 10X the suction power of other Roombas like the 600 series and has intelligent controls, including voice command support with the help of Amazon Alexa or Google Voice. 

Of course, the i3 also has the dual brush system most users vouch for when talking about cleaning carpets and tough spots. Roombas can do this better than most all of their competitors on the market.

Pros

  • Smart navigation without cameras. Since there are no cameras, it is slightly more secure since no one can hack into your home’s videos. The i3 range does this by using floor sensors.
  • It has 10X better suction than the iRobot Roomba 600 series.
  • Creates personalized cleaning schedules and supports voice commands using Google Voice and Amazon Alexa
  • Dual multi-surface brushes, which are proficient at removing dirt from the toughest places like carpets 
  • You can set up no-go zones using the app for the cleaner to avoid.
  • Uses Dirt Detect™ technology to identify trouble spots with a high concentration of dirt and cleans them thoroughly.
  • Recharges and then resumes cleaning at the same spot where it left off. You can leave it with almost no intervention except for cleaning out the dirt collector.
  • Inexpensive (compared to the other intelligent Roomba vacuums).

Cons

  • It has a shorter run time. For a large home, it would need to recharge many times. Comparatively, the i7 has twice the run time.
  • It runs a bit noisy.
  • This model does not have vSLAM navigation available in the Roomba i7 and i7+. This model will not create a map of your home per se and is liable to get stuck at the same place many times because of this problem.
  • The dust collector is a bit small. Therefore, for larger homes, you may need to clean multiple times.
  • Cleaning happens all over. You cannot specify zones where you want to clean with this model, which you can with the i7.

Youtube Review

To understand the capabilities of this robot vacuum and whether it fits your specific needs, do watch this video from iRobot explaining their Roomba i3 product.

Roomba® i3 Overview | iRobot® – YouTube

Comparing ROOMBA I3 VS. I7

iRobot Roomba i7

iRobot Roomba i7 (7150) Robot Vacuum- Wi-Fi Connected, Smart Mapping, Works with Alexa, Ideal for Pet Hair, Works With Clean Base, Black

The Roomba i7 is an advanced version of the i3, with higher run times, better navigation, and more intelligent controls.

The i7 uses vSLAM® navigation, a proprietary algorithm that uses cameras to map out your entire home and then create a custom navigation path that can optimize cleaning.

Another differentiating feature between the i7 and the i3 is that you can define cleaning zones in the i7. So, for example, you can define your living room as separate from your kitchen. This then gives you the flexibility to only clean one room at a time, instead of the robot having to clean the entire house in each cycle.

Imagine that you want a quick cleanup of the dining room before your dinner guests arrive. The i3 will not be able to identify the dining room and will set out to clean the whole room instead, whereas you can use Alexa or Google Voice to tell the i7 to go and clean the dining room! This is a very neat feature.

The i7 also shares the same high suction power, dual multi-surface cleaning brush, and personalized cleaning schedules that the i3 is capable of.

However, note that this model is nearly $250 more expensive than the i3, so unless you really want the features mentioned above, the i3 would likely satisfy your needs.

Pros

  • You can create customized cleaning zones with the i7, which lets you clean specific areas of your home instead of the whole place every time.
  • The i7 has a much smarter vSLAM navigation, which uses cameras to map out your home and create a custom map for ensuring a more thorough cleaning path.
  • It has 10X the cleaning power of the iRobot Roomba 600 series – with a suction power of 1800 Pa.
  • You can give it voice commands using Amazon Alexa and Google Voice.
  • It has a much larger run time of 180 minutes, making it perfect for larger homes. Despite this longer run time, the charging time is only slightly higher than the i3 (90 minutes for the i7 versus 75 minutes for the i3)

Cons

  • A fairly expensive robot vacuum.
  • No HEPA filters.
  • It uses cameras to map out your home. Some people find this intrusive and feel that this opens their home to hacking attacks.
  • It can be a bit aggressive with carpets, so if your carpets are thicker, you might want to set up a no-go zone around them.
  • This model can also run pretty noisy (~70dB).
  • Some people may find the vSLAM technology intrusive because of the use of cameras.

Youtube Review

Watch the video below to understand some of the unique features of this device, such as smart navigation and setting up clean zones.

iRobot Roomba i7 (7150) – Unboxing, Setup & Review – YouTube

iRobot Roomba i3 vs. iRobot Roomba i7: Which Is Better?

First off, the Roomba i7 is $250 more expensive than the Roomba i3. That’s a fairly nifty price to pay for the high-end price of the i7. However, you will appreciate the benefits of the i7 if you live in a large home or you have children or dogs in your place.

The features of smart navigation, longer run time, and clean zones that set apart the i7 come into focus for larger homes. You can identify areas where you want to quickly clean and not waste time cleaning the whole house at once. With a larger house, better navigation helps clean faster, and the i7 has a much more sophisticated navigation mechanism than the i3.

Comparison between ROOMBA I3 and. I7

iRobot Roomba i3+ vs iRobot Roomba i7+: Comparison Table

ProductiRobot Roomba i3+iRobot Roomba i7+
Weight (pounds)7.447.44
Dust/ Dirt Capacity (L)13.5 oz13 oz
Type Of FiltrationNon HEPANon HEPA
Power (Pa)10X of 600 series1800 Pa
Warranty Length (months)1212
Noise Level (Db)~60~60
Included Tools And Attachments1 Clean Base® Automatic Dirt Disposal2 Dirt Disposal Bags1 Extra High-Efficiency Filter1 Clean Base® Automatic Dirt Disposal5 AllergenLock™ Dirt Disposal Bags1 North American Line Cord1 Extra High-Efficiency Filter1 Extra Side Brush
Charge Time (Min)7590
Run Time (Mins)90180
Battery1800 mAH Li-Ion, DC14.4V1800 mAH Li-Ion, DC14.4V

iRobot Roomba i3+

iRobot Roomba i3+ (3550) Robot Vacuum with Automatic Dirt Disposal Disposal - Empties Itself for up to 60 days, Wi-Fi Connected Mapping, Works with Alexa, Ideal for Pet Hair, Carpets

Coming to the Roomba i3+, this advanced version of the Roomba i3 differs only in one key aspect – but it is a significant one.

The main problem with all robot vacuum cleaners, even the most advanced ones, is that you have to end up clearing out the dust collectors at least once or twice during a cycle. Otherwise, they become useless. Now, this requires both effort and your presence which somewhat defeats the purpose of having a robot vacuum cleaner in the first place. 

To solve this problem, iRobot introduced Clean Base®, a dirt disposal module where the robot can go and deposit the dust it has collected while clearing the house. This way, you don’t have to worry even the slightest bit about cleaning; you will only need to clean out Clean Base® once every two or so months.

The robot vacuum cleaner is exactly the same as the i3, but adding this feature makes this range one of the unique products in the world of robot vacuum cleaners.

Pros

  • Clean Base lets you program the i3+and leave it unattended for months on end.
  • You can set schedules based on custom suggestions for cleaning the house.
  • Smart navigation in straight-line paths.
  • It has 10X higher suction than the 600 series.
  • Personalized cleaning schedules.
  • Supports voice commands.
  • You can set up no-go zones using the app for the cleaner to avoid.
  • Uses Dirt Detect™ technology to identify trouble spots with a high concentration of dirt and cleans them thoroughly.
  • Recharges and then resumes cleaning at the same spot where it left off. You can leave it with almost no intervention except for cleaning out the dirt collector.

Cons

  • Almost $200 more expensive than the i3.
  • No HEPA filter.
  • Shorter run time, which is not appropriate for large homes.

Youtube Review

The i3+ is an amazing product and a potentially significant upgrade over the i3; to understand its capabilities fully, you can watch this review video. It will help you understand the navigation and other capabilities of this machine.

Irobot Roomba i3+ Robot Vacuum Review – YouTube

iRobot Roomba i7+

iRobot Roomba i7+ (7550) Robot Vacuum with Automatic Dirt Disposal - Empties Itself for up to 60 days, Wi-Fi Connected, Smart Mapping, Works with Alexa, Ideal for Pet Hair, Carpets, Hard Floors, Black

The Roomba i7+, just like the Roomba i3+, differentiates itself from the i7 only in one key area, which is the addition of the CleanBase collection bin. The collection bin can hold about 30 rounds of dirt accumulated in the dust collector. Therefore you will not have to worry about cleaning the dust collector every day. 

When compared to the i3+, the i7+ offers the same advantages as the i7 does over the i3. The i7+ has a much better navigation system (vSLAM) that maps out your home using cameras to create a perfect cleaning path.

You can also set up cleaning zones in your house, which can tell your robot vacuum to clean only specific areas instead of blindly cleaning the entire house.

Pros

  • With smart navigation, CleanBase, and cleaning zones, you essentially have everything that you need in the i7+ to completely forget vacuuming for months. You can set up schedules and areas of cleaning and then just go about your business as the i7+ takes care of everything.
  • You can also create no-go zones that let you dictate which areas the robot is not supposed to go.
  • It has a much higher run time than the i3+, so for a large house, it can do the job much faster without having to charge itself again and again.

Cons

  • It is quite a loud device.
  • It does not have a mopping function.
  • $250 more expensive than the i3+ and about $200 more expensive than the i7.

Youtube Review

Since the i7+ is a top-end robot cleaner, and you may have a lot of questions about the efficacy of Clean Base, vSLAM, and other technologies, please watch this youtube review to understand the product and whether it could be a good fit for your home.

Irobot Roomba i7+ Robot Vacuum Review – YouTube

iRobot Roomba i3+ vs iRobot Roomba i7+: Which Is Better?

The key difference between these two models lies again with how big of a home you have. Just like the i3 and i7, the i7+ is much better at cleaning larger spaces. But keep in mind that it is about $250 more expensive than the i3+, so only go for it if you really have the need.

Another question that often comes up is whether the i7+ is a worthy upgrade over the i7 (and the same for i3+ vs. i3). The Clean Base is sold separately for about $300, so if you feel that you really need it, you should probably buy it as a bundle with the i3+/i7+ models because there you are only paying $200 additional for it. But if you feel you can clean out the dust collector every day and it’s not too much of a hassle, I think you can do without the extra $250 spent.

Parting Words

Both the Roomba i3 and i7 are excellent robot vacuums in their own right. The i3+ and i7+ allow for automatic disposals so that your robot vacuum truly becomes independent. The i3 models will suffice for many users and those with smaller homes, but do consider that for the additional price you pay, you get some really nice features with the i7 that can make it worth the purchase, especially for a larger home.

Last update on 2021-12-03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API