How to Manually Map an Area Using Roomba?

Last updated on January 5th, 2024

Mapping technologies in Roombas have evolved a lot from when they were first introduced. Earlier models followed a mere bump and clean process where they would travel in straight lines until they encountered some obstacles.

But modern mapping technologies can tell you where your specific piece of furniture is and more. Let’s find out if it is really possible to do this kind of mapping manually.

How to manually map an area using Roomba?

The closest you can get to manually mapping an area using a Roomba is by editing the map created by the vacuum. It’s because they map the area automatically. But great customization options are available for the map – you can orient the map the way you want, set up and label different rooms, and create boundaries.

navigation and mapping technology
Roomba mapping the floor

Is it even possible to manually map an area using Roomba?

No, it is not possible to manually map an area using Roomba. Because they have it all automated. They have predefined instructions to use their onboard sensors and cameras (in models like the s9+) to navigate and map the area around them.

With the advanced PrecisionVision navigation system in models like j7+, you wouldn’t even feel the need to map an area manually. Its obstacle recognition and mapping tech is so well-developed that it hardly leaves anything out of the map.

Note: Although manual mapping is not available in Roombas, there are companies like Roborock and Ecovacs that allow you to operate your robot manually.

How to manually map an area using Roomba?

The closest you can get to mapping an area manually using Roomba is to customize the map created by the vacuum.

  • You can create and label different rooms.
  • You can set up boundaries and no-go zones where the vacuum will not enter.
  • You can even set up clean zones in some advanced models like i7+ for focusing on heavy traffic spots in your house.

Steps to map an area using Roomba

Mapping the floor through iRobot Home app
Mapping the floor through the iRobot Home app

The question arises if not manually, then how do you map an area using a Roomba? Here are a few simple steps that you can follow to map your home with your vacuum.

Step 1: Open the iRobot Home app

Step 2: Click the Map button on the app’s home screen

Step 3: Click on the ‘+’ icon at the top right corner

OR

Step 1: Click on the ‘Create a new map’ card

Step 2: Send your vacuum out on a mapping run

Step 3: Carry out 3 to 5 such mapping runs

A mapping run is different from a cleaning cycle. It only focuses on creating a map of the area. It is much faster than the cleaning cycle. While on the mapping run, the robot does not turn on its vacuum, so it can finish the job quicker.

Dos and don’ts of mapping an area with Roomba

DosDon’ts
Start mapping from the docking stationDon’t start mapping from a random spot
Keep the docking station’s power onDon’t pick up the vacuum while it’s mapping
Let the vacuum charge between two mapping runsDon’t stop a mapping run manually
Clear the floor of small objectsDon’t keep the doors closed
Dos and don’ts of mapping an area

Starting a mapping run from some random spot in your home confuses the vacuum. If this happens, the robot will find it difficult to find its way back to the docking station and will create an inaccurate map of the area.

Check out: How to cancel Roomba’s schedule?

How long does it take for Roomba to map?

A Roomba usually takes 3 to 5 cleaning cycles or mapping runs to completely map your home.

The exact mapping time depends on the following factors:

  • The size of your house: Bigger houses need more mapping runs
  • The layout of your house: Open floor plans are mapped quicker
  • Furniture orientation: Cluttered furniture orientation calls for longer mapping time

The robot can create a map in the first mapping run itself, but it often turns out to be inaccurate. You have to let it go out more times to allow it to absorb the complete picture. After 3 to 5 cleaning cycles, you will get a more accurate map which you can customize as you wish.

How to get Roomba to remap a room?

These vacuums don’t have the option to remap just one room. You will have to map your entire home again. This might sound like a tedious task, but there’s no way around it.

Just send your robot out on a few mapping cycles, and you can have the updated layout of the room in question.

Rearranged furniture? Here’s what to do next:

After rearranging furniture in a room or renovation, you will have to remap your home. Otherwise, it might bump into the new arrangement without realizing the setup has changed.

Follow the same steps you did when creating a map of your home for the first time. Send it out on a few mapping runs to adapt to the new design of your home.

Conclusion

Unlike some brands, iRobot doesn’t let you manually map an area using your vacuum. You can place it in a particular room to map that room. But that is as far as it goes. You can customize the mapped area and add zones as per your preference. However, total manual mapping is not possible in Roombas.

FAQs

How do I force Roomba to map a room?

You can force a Roomba to map a room by creating a new map in the iRobot Home app.

How do I manually edit my Roomba map?

You can go to the iRobot Home app and select the map you want to edit. Then click on the Edit icon and add labels, dividers, zones, etc., at your convenience.

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Siddhi Gurav

She is the editor and content writer at Smart Home Bulls. Siddhi merges her passion for language with SEO expertise. With 4 years of experience as a creative writer and a passion for smart home technology, she fits in perfectly at Smart Home Bulls. Her wide experience in content marketing has been an excellent addition to our team.

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