Rooba 560 - an improvement over the Discovery model
Let me start by saying that this is my third Roomba vacuum, and I will buy others when needed. So, why the 4-star rating instead of 5-stars?
Simply put, the Model 560 needs more attention to maintenance than its predecessor. While the Discovery 4210 did what I thought was an amazing job at dirt removal, I could ignore it for a week (that's three cleaning cycles) with no detrimental effects.
Not so the 560. The model 560 removes much more dirt and hair than the Discovery, but the hair (at least in my unit) doesn't seem to make it to the collection bin. Instead, it collects around the brush posts, forming a nice, neat fur ball, which, if not removed promptly, will embed itself in the machine's gear box and brush bearings.
As long as you take the time to remove the hair COMPLETELY from the brushes after each use, you will be more than pleased with the performance of this model.
It has a generous dustbin and a well designed filtration system (the filter acts as a hood over the vacuum motor - and this filter is easily removed for cleaning and replacement). However, where the older model's dustbin would be full of dust and hair after a round of cleaning, my dustbin has only dust. I can't say whether this is a defect in my unit, or a conscious design decision. I would be happier if the hair made its way to the dustbin rather than being trapped at the ends of the brush.
The soft-touch bumpers of this model ensure that the robot gently touches your walls and furniture, rather than meeting them at top speed like the Discovery. However, it does not "see" very dark or very thin furniture. When approaching a black item, or an item with skinny legs (like the wrought iron legs of a table or chairs), it will still hit that item with full force. The owners manual points out that the furniture must be about 2 inches across for it to be detected by the sensors.
Programming of this model is improved over the Discovery. I find it does a better job going around the legs of a chair or table than its predecessor, and also does a better (but not perfect) job of dealing with throw rugs on a non-carpeted surface. While it will attempt to disentangle itself from wires or tassels, I find it will sometimes attack an area rug or throw rug from the corner, and in the process, either fold the carpet on itself, or get tangled in the mess.
The 560 is remarkably quiet compared to the Discovery. On flat floors, the beater brush isn't as loud as on the Discovery, and on carpets, it is noticeably quieter, despite the more powerful vacuum. I am able to watch TV with only a slight increase in volume while the vacuum is running around me.
One of the selling features of the 500 series is its ability to clean rooms for a set amount of time before going to the next room. This is accomplished by using something called a "Lighthouse" beacon. The lighthouse prevents the Roomba from leaving a specific room by projecting a beam across the doorway; and after a time, the beam is turned off, allowing the robot to move to the next room. The model 560 is NOT compatible with this lighthouse feature. You need to buy the model 570 to get this capability.
The 500 series has undergone some improvements since its original release. The original side brushes were brittle and broke often. There are also different styles of main brush. Read online reviews and do your homework before buying a specific version of this vacuum.
24 of 24 people found this review helpful.
Let Your Robot Do the Work!
I just recently purchased my second Roomba 560.
My wife and I are in our 60's. We live in a two story house with a combination of carpeted, tile, and hardwood floors. We put our first Roomba to work upstairs. Every morning at 3:00 AM, while we are sleeping, it leaves its docking station, cleans the upstairs, and returns to the docking station to recharge its battery. All we have to do is empty the dirt from its cannister, and occasionally clean its rotating brushes. Cleaning is quick and easy, No tools are required.
My wife likes it so much we just got the second one to clean the downstairs. These fine little robots help keep our house clean and they save us a lot of work.
The scheduling option is a really great feature. Roomba has a on board clock and it knows the time of day, and what day of the week it is. We can schedule which days we want it to clean, and what time of day we want it to begin cleaning.
When finished cleaning, or if its battery is running low, Roomba returns to the docking station for a recharge. They run very quietly, so we have scheduled them to vacuum the house while we are asleep.
Roombas do not have the suction power of a full sized upright vacuum, and they are not intended to totally replace these machines. But for normal everyday cleaning chores they are perfect. If used frequently, they keep our floors very clean.
Our greatest concern was how Zeke, our 100 pound Doberman, would react to it. He was curious at first, especially when Roomba bumped lightly into him. Now, when Roomba is cleaning, he just moves aside, lets it through, and pays it no further attention.
We will definitely replace these Roombas when they wear out with the newest model Roomba available at the time.
14 of 14 people found this review helpful.
Time saver, great product
The roomba 560 works better than expected.It does a great job cleaning floors and rugs. Get rid of stuff clutter on the floor than set the schedule and presto. Easy directions to follow and seems well built. After about 2-3 times your rugs will look brighter. We have a big dog and 3 cats and 3 kids and the roomba handles the hair and dander and kid debris. My wife was skeptical at first but after a week was very happy as she doesnt have to sweep and vacumn. Our house looks and smells better with a lot less work. I purchased a second Roomba for the upstairs. A great product that I highly recommend. Oh , just one drawback The unit could use a larger bin. It holds enough but it would be nice if it would hold two days cleaning when you forget to clean the bin. Fabulous I might add that it does have entertainment value too. I can sit there and stare at it at work as it is so amazing!
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
It Was a Merry Christmas...
I had successfully made it to December without finding a Christmas gift for my wife and once again, I had my back up to the wall. Franticly searching the web for ideas, I figured I would try ebay. It was the best desicion I could make for the limited time I had. Daily deals popped up on the home page and I was introduced to the Roomba Robotic Cleaner. What a perfect gift! I know that household cleaning items aren't the best ideas for a wife's Christmas gift, but this was something that will offer my wife assistance in doing these bothersome chores...and the robot can be set to work while we are at work. Not while I am watching football. The product works like a charm. Just press the buttons and it does all the work. It takes quite a bit longer to clean the floors than it would with a standard vacume cleaner but the effort is much less. The Roomba 560 can switch automaticaly from hard floors to carpet and also cleans in corners. I am very pleased with the performance of this product and I am looking forward to enjoying watching games uninterrupted on Sunday afternoons.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
I love, love, love my Roomba. I have two of them!!! My cleaning lady was at my house on Tuesday and I used the Roomba on a Friday for the first time. I was so surprised to see how much my old vacuum cleaner missed!!! Tilly, which is what I have named my 1st Roomba, goes under the beds and gets all of the dirt and dust bunnies and she does not get tangled with the telephone and electrical cords. She is so easy to operate and to program. Cleaning the Roomba is a cinch, just open the brush area, take out the brushes, remove the hair, replace the brushes and close it again, and she is ready to get to work. The dirt bin is so easy to empty as well. I have two cats, plus I don't like looking at or walking on messy carpets or floors, so I bought a second Roomba for the other side of the house. I would recommend anyone to get one.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.