iRobot ® Roomba 780 – Full Review

The iRobot Roomba 780 is a more advanced model than the 770 Roomba, and is one of the latter models introduced in the 700 Roomba series (770, 780, 790) vacuum bots. iRobot claims that it works more efficiently at picking up 98% of dirt and debris off all types of floor surfaces.

Although it is said to be much better at cleaning and functioning then all of the previously released Roomba 700 models (Roomba 770), it offers very similar specs to the 770 model (the two are nearly identical in appearance & weight, diameter, and height.)

The Roomba 780 and 770 models each have the same navigation system, Hepa filtration systems, and infrared sensors. It also dons the same 3-step cleaning mechanism & technology as the 770 model (will be discussed in detail further in review.)

The 780 does carry a few newly added upgrades to its main features. The 780 Roomba robot vacuum employs touch pad controls instead of using actual buttons like the 770 featured. It also incorporates the added room confinement device that is not a wall or barrier, but instead acts as a virtual lighthouse to welcome the Roomba 780 into a room instead of blockading it from cleaning a room.

The Roomba 780 is more expensively priced than the 770 model, typically averaging in cost about $100 more and about the same as the Roomba 790 which includes the wireless command center, and a slew of extra accessories.

This begs the question to be asked- what does the 780 have to offer you, how does it rate in the mix between the 770 and 790 model, and does it have what you need in a vacuum bot?

 

 

 

How Does it Work?

The Roomba 780 works very much like the earlier 700 model Roombas, with the exception of the implementation of the virtual lighthouses- instead of the virtual walls (later versions in the 790-800 series models (Roomba 870 & Roomba 880) have both technologies in a single device.)

The vacuum bot can be programmed to clean on schedule, can detect when its nearing end of battery life and return to dock, can navigate underneath between different flooring surfaces easily, and recharges on demand when cleaning cycle is complete.

The Roomba 780 is marketed as an allergy-reducing bot, because the built-in heap filtration system also enables this machine to filtrate the air and pick up more pet hair, dander, dust particles, and allergens.

It also takes the chore our of vacuuming by its features that able it to clean on demand, navigate room to room, and its time-sparing, hands-free vacuum automation. It does just about everything but empty its own trash bin.

 

 

 

 

Customer Reviews & Feedback

Amazon:

When evaluating the iRobot Roomba 780 reviews on Amazon, we found that:

83% of 4-5 star ratings:
The Roomba 780 came out high in positive ratings of 4 and 5 stars. Buyers have reported that it does indeed do a great job at reducing allergens and picking up pet hair as the manufacturer claims it does. It is also proficient at navigating around cliffs, objects, and from surface to surface, and is quite as it performs its many duties while boasting a battery life that users seem to praise as “amazing.”

 

“I didn’t expect the Roomba to clean edges or corners well, but its side brushes get into most places. I had vacuumed with my Dyson Animal the day before my Roomba was delivered, yet it picked up an incredible amount of dirt and debris; I could really see the difference where it had been. It coped fine with changes in flooring; I have short pile carpet, tiles and vinyl flooring and it wasn’t fazed by sudden changes. It managed rugs fine.”
(By Plum Delice, Amazon Rating Given: 5 Stars)

“My new ‘best friend’!!! Highly recommend – can’t believe the amount of dust & hair it picks up daily! A must have :)”
(By Sarah Zammit Tabona, Amazon Rating Given: 5 Stars)

“Picks up the fluff balls left behind by my animals with minimal effort on my part! Super easy to put together, well made. I usually wouldn’t spend this much on something with such a small bin….so glad I did. We have two, large, very furry dogs and two cats. Before purchasing the iRobot 780 for pets, I spent so much time of my day picking up balls of fluff. From the foyer to under the master bed. Sometimes I would pull out a vacuum. Needless to say, this was a losing battle I fought for 10yrs. Well no more! I turn my iRobot Roomba on every morning and no more stooping!”
(By LawoLife, Amazon Rating Given: 4 Stars)

For more reviews on Amazon.com, Click Here »

 

12% of 2-3 Star Ratings:
Users were satisfied mostly with the performance of the Roomba 780, however 2-3 star ratings were provided in reviews by consumers who complained about the lack of details included with the instruction manual of the 780. They also remarked that in contradiction to more positive ratings who pronounced the Roomba as quiet, that it was loud. Additionally, there were a few users who received faulty bots that loved them until they stopped working and await a replacement via the warranty.

 

“It needs to come with more detailed instructions on how to use it and how to clean and maintain it. I found the DVD and the written literature completely lacking. It cleans well, but there are so many things you could share about it to make it easier for the buyer. How would you like to buy a paint by numbers kit, only to find there are only a third of the numbers shown?”
(By Kathy, Amazon Rating Given: 3 Stars)

“This product works okay, but is loud and drives me nuts. Maybe that’s more an issue with me than the product, because I can be very noise-sensitive. Just be aware than unless you love the sound of R2D2 starting up at random times and making a LOT of noise, this may not be for you.”
(By Holly, Amazon Rating Given: 3 Stars)

“Mine stopped working after a month. During the month it worked, it was great! I can’t wait to get my warranty replacement so I can have clean floors again. I’ll update you on the new one and customer service when all is said and done.”
(By T. White, Amazon Rating Given: 2 Stars)

For more reviews on Amazon.com, Click Here »

 

5% of 1 Star Ratings:
A very low percentage of buyers (only 5% which is excellent) gave this model only 1 star in their reviews for it running louder than expected, cleaning in an unorganized pattern, and not handling dark colored surfaces or long stranded carpets very well. And others who have used the 790 often report wishing it had the combination lighthouse/walls device that makes it more customized in cleaning room to room.

 

“I liked my Roomba until I got a new living room rug that had a dark pattern. The Roomba refuses to move on it due to false positives from the cliff sensors.”
(By Joshua Weisskoff, Amazon Rating Given: 1 Stars)

For more reviews on Amazon.com, Click Here »

 

YouTube reviews:

 

 

 

Other Models of Roomba iRobot – Comparison:

 

 

 

Product Features

The Roomba 780 is not sky blue like the 790 in color scheme nor is it black & grey like the 770. It is colored with a dark shade and a lighter shade of grey, instead. It is the same size, shape (disc-shaped), and weight running at 13.9 x 3.6 in its diameter/height ratio and 8.4 pounds.

 

 

 

 

Cleaning Technology and Capabilities

The Roomba 780 is designed with a special 3-stage cleaning system that is also built into the 770 & 760 Roomba models. (Explained in video- insert here)

It works to better pick up dirt and clean your floors by:

  • Step 1: Airplane-propeller like brushes that sweep between crevices of walls, baseboards and other corners to remove dust and dirt better.
  • Step 2: Brushes that rotate in a counter direction to pick up debris that is then suctioned upwards into a circular chamber.
  • Step 3: The last step is the battery-powered 30W motor which powerfully propels the dirt, debris, and particles into the chamber.

The iRobot Roomba 780 also was developed with AeroVac Series 2 Bin technology a clog resistant, air collection system which consists of it running with rigorous suction ability that extracts dirt, debris, and namely hair into the trash bin.

Because of the AeroVac technology and the 3-stage cleaning mechanisms, iRobot claims that the 780 will now extract and cover 98% of dirt on your floor spaces, and 50% more than in the previous models released.

 

Navigation and Sensors

The 780 Model Roomba also boasts the same Dirt Detect2 series sensory and navigation technology, the molded soft touch bumper detection system, and persistent pass cleaning sensor as the 770 and some of the earlier 700 series models.

These sensors are acoustic and (IR) infrared in nature and can not only sense and detect dirt more thoroughly, but also can determine the density of the dirt & debris which help the bot to cover areas repeatedly for a better cleaning experience.

They also help the bot to navigate from surface to surface, to travel under objects such as chairs and beds without getting stuck, and to sense steps and cliffs so it does not pass the point at which it will fall. The soft touch bumper sensors help create a cushion and prevent the machine from scratching objects, baseboards, furniture, and walls.

 

Dual Hepa Filtration System

iRobot introduced a dual hepa-filter system in the 770 mode, and the 780 Roomba also is built with this system that better reduces pet dander, hair, and allergens more effectively.

These filters actually perform better to filter out smaller particles overall. These filters also boast a longer life-span (needing to be replaced every 3 months, instead of 2 months.) Before replacing the Hepa filter after its 3-month shelf life, iRobot does recommend that you manually clean the filter after every 3 uses for best results.

 

Touch Pad Features and Controls

The 770 model of the Roomba bot series has buttons that you need to press to clean, schedule, and digitally control. However the 780 received an upgrade to its control panel- and is now touch pad- instead of physical buttons.

This modern advancement feature really does not impact its ease of use or functions, it’s just merely an aesthetical design addition.

 

Remote Control

The purchase of the Roomba 780 vacuum does include a remote control that is much like a TV remote (only smaller.)

This remote allows the user to schedule cleaning, command it to re-dock or charge itself, and can be used to help better navigate the vacuum bot to clean where you want it to.

 

 

Roomba 780’s Remote Control Vs
Roomba 790’s Wireless Command Center

Since the 790 Roomba bot’s release, there is much confusion in regards to the difference between the standard remote that comes with the 780 and the Wireless Command Center featured with the 790 model.

The differences are:

Design and construction: The design of the remote with the 780 & the 790 wireless command center are night & day. The wireless command center looks more like a gaming controller and is larger- whereas the 780’s remote is more like a remote control for a small TV.

Features & Functions: The 780’s Roomba standard remote operates on IR (infrared light) technology while the 790‘s wireless command center works off of radio frequencies. This is a huge difference as in order to use the 780’s remote you have to be in line, or the bot has to be in sight to give it commands or to remote control it and can only reach up to 25ft.

The 790‘s wireless command center can be used anywhere without pointing it or the device being in sight range and can be used in ranges larger than 25ft. The 780 also lacks on its remote one added scheduling option which the 790‘s wireless command center includes.

 

 

Virtual Lighthouses:
The Difference of Walls & Lighthouses

The 770 model Roomba vacuum included virtual walls which allow an individual to select and set in in certain areas which the user DOES NOT want the bot to access or clean, however the new 780 does not come with virtual walls it includes in contrast, virtual lighthouses. Virtual lighthouses work oppositely from the virtual walls by indicating when set up in a certain area that the bot access and clean the area designated.

Note: In the 780, 790 Roomba models and 800 series Roombas (870 and 880), the machines come with devices that offer both functions.

 

 

What’s in the Package

When you purchase the Roomba 780, you will receive in package the following included contents:

  • Roomba 780 Machine
  • 1 Home Base Docking/Recharge Station
  • 1 Battery for the Roomba 780
  • 1 Battery Charger (3 hours)
  • 1 DVD Instructional Video
  • 2 Virtual Lighthouses
  • 1 Remote Control
  • Extra Brush Set
  • Extra Hepa Filter (1)
  • Round Brush Cleaning Tool
  • Flat Brush Cleaning Tool

 

 

Product Replacements and Accessories

The Roomba 780 includes the basic essentials that will help you to use it effectively as listed above. However, iRobot also sells the following extra accessories you can optionally purchase to extend the performance of your vacuum bot:

Docking Stations & Home Bases: If you have a large home, or want to have more than one docking station for your Roomba 780, you can purchase them individual at an extra cost.

Battery Charger: An additional battery charger can be purchased and used for your Roomba 780 bot or if your battery charger has gone on the fritz after extended, long-term use.

Virtual Walls & Lighthouses: 2 Virtual lighthouse devices are included with your package, however you may want more customizability in designating which rooms the Roomba accesses and cleans. This could be for a larger home or other reasons. You can also opt in for a virtual wall which blocks the machine from entering certain areas.

Note: The Virtual Lighthouse/Walls devices that combine the functions of blocking/welcoming the bot into certain areas of your home ARE compatible with ALL 700/800 models and are interchangeable in nature.

Also, there are some required replacement parts that you will need to buy in order to maintenance and keep your Roomba 780 running optimally, these are listed below:

Battery: The battery for included with the Roomba 780 will eventually not perform 100%. You will need to buy a replacement after you notice it faltering. The shelf-life of your battery may vary, but iRobot recommends you replace the battery within 6 months to a year after purchase date (not counting 6-month battery warranty.)

Hepa Filters: The Roomba 780 runs on a Hepa filtration system which helps it to reduce allergens and capture small particles. It can be manually cleaned between extended uses, however iRobot suggests that the Hepa filter be replaced every 3 months.

Brush Packs and Sets: The brushes that come with your Roomba have a variable life-span. They can get damaged with extended use or in other circumstances which will impact how well your Roomba cleans for you. In this case you may need to purchase a brush set additionally at a small price.

 

 

 

 

 

Warranty & Support

Warranty:

The Roomba 780 model comes with the standard iRobot Roomba warranties on its parts and the machine itself (Limited 1-Year Warranty.)

The Battery that is included with your initial purchase is covered with a 6-Month warranty (after then it will need to be purchased and replaced out of pocket expense.)

For more warranty information & details, and customer service inquiries contact iRobot with details provided below OR if purchased through Amazon contact the seller direct for the best service.

 

Support:

  • By Phone.
  • By Email.
  • Live Chat.
  • Online FAQs and tutorials.

 

 

Roomba 780 – Questions & Answers:

After much research, we found hundreds of consumer questions on the Roomba 780 model. However, we have broken them down into a brief, prioritized list of the most popular asked questions. Here are the most frequently asked questions with answers to better help you decide if the Roomba 780 model is the bot for you:

“Can Roomba 780 really handle a home with multiple pets, and clean it efficiently?”

Yes. The dual hepa filtration system and the Aerovac cleaning technology works powerfully to suction up pet hair and dander. It also does a better job at transferring the hair and particles to the trash chamber so the brushes do not get clogged and tangled with excess debris and hair.

“How long does the battery life last in one cleaning session of the Roomba 780?”

The battery charger will recharge your Roomba 780 and averages about 3 hours. This means your bot can proceed up to 3-hours to clean room to room without needing to dock itself and recharge up.

“Can the Roomba 780 run on 220v instead of 110v?”

No. It is best recommended that you use the 110v outlets. If you have a 220v outlet then it is best that you get a converter to better spare your Roomba 780 from getting damaged unnecessarily.

“How well does the Roomba 780 transition between different surface heights?”

According to most consumer statements in this regard, the Roomba 780 performs quite well at transitioning between flat surfaces to even 1 ½ inch carpets. However anything beyond that height has been questioned. Results vary.

“Can I buy a virtual wall to go along with the lighthouse device and my Roomba 780 model?”

Yes. The Virtual lighthouses and wall devices are interchangeable among the 700, 800 series models and will work compatibly with your Roomba 780 without any issue.

“How often do the Hepa filters last, before needing to be replaced?”

iRobot suggests and recommends that you maintenance your Hepa filters for the 780 model by cleaning it after every 3 uses. They also recommend that you replace the Hepa filters every 3 months for best performance and results.

“Does the Roomba 780 come with a remote control or wireless command center?”

The Roomba 780 comes with a standard remote control, however there is a large difference between the standard remote and the wireless command center that is included with the purchase of the Roomba 790 model. The wireless command center offers more remote commands and programming features, and is designed in appearance uniquely.

“Will the Roomba 780 scratch my floors, walls, furniture, or baseboards?”

The Roomba 780 is equipped with soft bumper sensors that gently brush objects or vertical surfaces. This features allows it to clean in crevices, between objects, around them more efficiently without causing any scratches, scrapes, marks, or damage.

“Will the Roomba 780 know when to charge itself if its battery life is diminishing?”

Yes. The Roomba will automatically return to its docking station/base to recharge itself when the battery life has run down to a certain percentage that makes the Roomba unable to finish its cleaning task.

“Will the Roomba 780 bot machine notify me when I need to empty the bin?”

Yes. There is a light located on the machine which will flash when the bin needs to be emptied and is full. There are also other indicator lights that inform you when there is problems with the bot, it needs to be recharged, is in the process of charging or is fully charged.

 

Pros

Performs well at suctioning hair, dust, and allergens
Runs quietly in cleaning mode
Navigates well from room to room, and surface to surface
Does have good sensors that prevent it from falling on uneven surfaces (stairs, steps, door tracks, and more)
Well made, with a good-quality design
The scheduled cleaning mechanism is highly praised for sparing time
Assembled, pre-charged and ready to use, out of box
Requires minimal supervision
Very adaptable on different surfaces from tile, wood, laminate flooring, ceramic, carpet- to shag carpet.
Doesn’t get tripped up by wires or objects

 

Cons

Only includes virtual lighthouse features (instead of both wall/lighthouse devices)
Doesn’t do well on dark surfaces
Does occasionally get stuck under things
Hepa Filters are small & get dirty faster and need to be cleaned every 3 uses
Small trash bin that has to be manually emptied regularly

 

 

About iRobot Company

iRobot is one of the leading manufacturers of robotic vacuums. It has been operating since 2002 when it released its first Roomba vacuum model. Since then it has manufactured and sold thousands of Roomba models, and has expanded its product categories to mops, sweepers, and more. iRobot is well-recognized for producing quality cleaning bots that help consumers spare time and work when needing a reliable, automated device to service their home floor surfaces.

 

 

Final Recommendation: The Verdict

The Roomba 780 functions and performance is well-praised in most reviews and reflect in its high ratings in comparison to the 770 model. Its ability to extract more dirt, pet hair, and allergens is a strong selling point for those who have pets or suffer from seasonal and superficial allergies.

The Roomba 780 model’s sensory technology is a big improvement from past models that missed spots, fell down stairs, and would trip on wires it allows for less human supervision. It also boasts a sleek design that consumers really have taken well to, in addition to the new touchpad controls on the device.

Although the Roomba 780 has a few down sides such as only including virtual lighthouses, having issues with dark surfaces, and its occasional ‘getting stuck’ in one area- customers of the 780 Roomba really appear to be pleased with its performance as an automated vacuum robot.

This does not mean that you will have a similar experience with it, as all circumstances and preferences are unique, but it DOES mean that you can feel relatively safe that this product will perform as the manufacturer claims- should you decide to buy it.


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