Are Refurbished Roombas Good in 2024? 7 Tips Before Buying

Last updated on February 15th, 2024

It’s always nice to have a good smart vacuum that will take the cleaning hassle off your hands. But the good vacuums are always expensive. If you don’t want to spend much but want the performance they can deliver, refurbished Roombas come out to be the best option.

You might have heard of many bad experiences with refurbished models, and it scares you to get one. You are not wrong. But all refurbished products are not bad. Let’s find out if refurbished Roombas are really good.

So, are refurbished Roombas good?

Refurbished Roombas can be good if you verify their quality before buying. There are several aspects, like the age of the vacuum, warranty, manufacturer certification, return policy, etc., that you should verify before making a purchase. Always make the purchase from trusted websites like Amazon, Woot, and eBay.

Read a similar article: Can You Rent a Roomba? (Buying vs. Renting)

What are refurbished Roombas?

Here’s a simple explanation for those who don’t know what exactly a refurbished Roomba is.

Sometimes, people buy Roombas and use them for a while before deciding they don’t need it anymore. The reason could be it’s not working for them, or they want to upgrade to a new model.

Some of them return their vacuums to the manufacturer or some other retailer. The manufacturer can’t just throw them away – it will be a waste of resources. So they repair and restore them to a new-like condition.

They check the condition of the vacuum, identify whether it has any issues, replace the worn-out parts with new ones, upgrade the software if an update is available, and so on. Then, they sell these restored models for a lower price than the original models. This is your refurbished Roomba.

Open box vs. Refurbished

Two kinds of Roombas are available in the market besides the new ones – open box and refurbished. The product description often mentions which kind of vacuum that particular vacuum is. People think both mean the same, but that’s not true.

Open-box vacuums are products that were delivered to the buyer, but they returned them without using them. They are called open boxes because their box is simply opened, and the product is returned without ever being used. It is good to get a refurbished open-box vacuum (yes, they are available) as they are almost brand new.

Things to check before buying a refurbished Roomba

Things to check before Buying Refurbished Roomba
Things to check before Buying Refurbished Roomba

There are some things that you should keep in mind before buying a refurbished robovac.

Price

Always check the price of a new product before buying a refurbished one. The price has to be lower than the new one. Some sellers try to sell refurbished vacuums for the original price. Try to beware of them.

Here’s a great example of refurbished models available at a lower price – The j7 is available at $599.99 on iRobot’s official website, but a refurbished j7 on eBay is just $299.99. The price is less than half the original one.

How old is the Roomba?

Refurbished roomba box
Refurbished Roomba box

The age of the vacuum matters. There’s no point in getting a 5-year-old refurbished vacuum because it is going to have a very short lifespan. Roombas usually don’t last beyond 5 to 7 years on average. So make sure you check how old the refurbished vacuum is. If you are not sure, then don’t hesitate to reach out to the seller to get the exact details.

Ideally, a vacuum cleaner used for less than 2 years is acceptable to be bought as a refurbished model.

The area covered

The area covered by the Roomba during its previous cleaning cycles is also an important factor to consider before buying a refurbished model. This data is available in the last owner’s iRobot Home App. It often becomes difficult to get this information because, most of the time, the previous owner has already deleted all the vacuum data.

But if possible, find out how much area the robot has covered. The less area covered, the better.

Accessories

Most refurbished products don’t include the set of accessories that comes with the new product. But if a seller is giving additional accessories with the product, then it’s a great thing. Of course, the price shouldn’t be much more than that of the competitor sellers.

Additional accessories can include an extra side brush, extra filter, virtual wall barriers, cleaning solutions, etc.

Warranty

Thumb rule – Never buy refurbished products without a warranty.

A warranty is very important to protect you and your product from any malfunction in the first few months of buying it. Verified sellers will give you a warranty on refurbished robots. It won’t be the same as the new model, but it must be sufficient so that you won’t get ripped off.

Always read the warranty terms carefully, especially for refurbished models. Get the necessary paperwork done so you can claim it in case the vacuum shows malfunctions. If you are unsure about the specifics of the warranty for a particular product, reach out to the seller to get your doubts cleared.

Return policy

It’s difficult to get a replacement policy on refurbished robots, but you should check for the return policy. With refurbished models, there’s always a risk that your vacuum won’t work like a new one. But if the extent of that is too much, you might want to return the product.

Be clear on the return terms and conditions. Don’t buy from sellers who charge you a return fee or who make the return process a huge deal by delaying pickup or repayment. Also, make sure you note the correct return period and don’t delay the return beyond the specified limit. For this, the best tip is to check and test the robot vacuum as soon as you receive it.

Manufacturer Certification

Products that have a manufacturer’s certification are the best refurbished products. If the vacuum is manufacturer-certified, it will be clearly mentioned in the product description. Having manufacturer certification gives authenticity to the product. The manufacturer only uses the original replacement parts, so you get the closest product to a new one.

Third-party restorers don’t use iRobot-certified products to cut costs. This eventually decreases the quality of the product. Always go for the manufacturer-certified refurbished robovac if you can get one.

New cheaper Roombas vs. Refurbished high-end Roombas

Roombas are available in different price ranges. You can get some models for as low as $200, while some high-end models surpass $1000. What if you get the high-end models for half the price or even less? That sounds like an interesting deal. Let’s find out if it is really the best deal.

New cheaper Roombas

Let’s look at the pros and cons of buying new, cheaper Roombas.

ProsCons
New productAverage performance
Comes with all the accessoriesAdvanced features not available
It comes with all the accessoriesPoor navigation
Good return and replacement policy
Pros and cons of buying new, cheaper Roombas

Refurbished high-end Roombas

These are the pros and cons of buying refurbished high-end Roombas.

ProsCons
Advanced featuresUsed models
Better cleaning performanceLimited warranty
Smart navigation systemsNo replacement policy
No accessories included
Pros and cons of buying refurbished high-end Roombas

Where to buy refurbished Roombas?

Always buy refurbished products from reputed websites. You will be tempted to go for the cheapest product, but quality matters. You don’t want to spend $200 to realize your robot is not even starting. So always buy from credible sources.

Some of the top websites to buy refurbished products are Amazon, Woot, and eBay.

Amazon

Amazon has great deals during their sales. Keep your eye out for upcoming Amazon sales to get the best deal on your refurbished vacuum.

Woot

Woot has daily deals that vanish when the stock gets over. You have to grab them before the others. This gives you a short span to decide whether you should get it or not. We suggest you monitor the deals for a few days before you actually decide to purchase. This will give you a layout of what’s the best you can get.

eBay

eBay is not big on deals. However, there are several reputed sellers on the platform. You will have a lot of options to choose from.

Tip: Compare the price on different websites before you buy and select the best possible deal.

Conclusion

If you want a good robot vacuum from iRobot but don’t have the budget for it, then buying a refurbished vacuum is an excellent option. And if you are wondering if refurbished Roombas are good, then our answer is yes. You just have to be really careful where you buy it from. Only purchase from trusted sellers.

FAQs

Are refurbished Roombas good for pet hair?

Yes, refurbished vacuums are as good for pet hair as new models.

Can I get a used Roomba for half price?

Yes, some of the used Roomba models are sold for half the price. But make sure you check it for damage before buying.

Photo of author

Mark Thompson

Hi I am Mark, the founder of Smart Home Bulls. Having spent 5 years immersed in the intricacies of smart home gadgets at a leading tech company, I decided to chart my own course side by side along with the job. Enter Smart Home Bulls – the result of my desire to simplify the smart living experience.

Leave a Comment