Roomba i3 vs. i7 – Differences & Specs (Buying Guide in 2024)

Last updated on April 15th, 2024

Roombas have changed the way we clean our homes. They took home automation to the next level. They showed us how hassle-free cleaning can get. You no longer have to spend hours dusting those tricky corners. You can expect your floors to be dust-free with a few simple clicks. The best part is that these vacuums can clean even when you are not home, so you can return to a clean home.

For this article, we are comparing two top-performing robot vacuums. Let’s see how the Roomba i3 and the i7 can elevate our cleaning experience. Also, find out which one of the two is the better fit for you because it all comes down to finding the right one.

Roomba i3 vs. i7: Which is better?

Roomba i7 is a better choice than the i3 due to its advanced iAdapt 3.0 navigation system combined with the vSLAM navigation technology. With i7, you get a better view of your home and can customize targeted cleaning runs. The Keep Out Zones, also known as No-go Zones, is a big add-on. These features make the price difference seem like a logical cost to pay.

Read a similar article: Roomba i3/i3+ vs. j7/j7+ – Detailed Comparison Guide

Roomba i3

Roomba i3 vacuum robot
Roomba i3

The Roomba i3 is an entry-level robot vacuum. It has the most basic iAdapt 1.0 navigation system and SLAM technology. It does not have a camera; it simply navigates with the help of sensors. The 3-Stage Cleaning System loosens, lifts, and suctions debris right out from floors.

Roomba i7

Roomba i7 vacuum robot
Roomba i7

The Roomba i7 is a high-performance robotic vacuum cleaner with advanced mapping capabilities. Having a camera, it uses the vSLAM navigation technology. It is different than the i3’s SLAM technology. The interesting thing is that it was launched in 2018, two years before the i3. And yet, it is the better one.

Roomba i3 vs. i7 Specs

Roomba i3 vs. i7 specifications
Roomba i3 vs. i7 specifications

The table below shows a point-to-point comparison between the two products.

SpecificationsRoomba i3Roomba i7
Dimensions13.3 x 13.3 x 3.6 inches13.34 x 13.34 x 3.63 inches
Weight7.2 Pounds7.44 Pounds
ShapeRoundRound
ColorGrey with BlackCharcoal Grey
AvailabilityRefurbished modelsRefurbished models
Surface RecommendationCarpets, Hard floorsCarpets, Hard floors
Cleaning OptionsVacuumingVacuuming
Control TypeVoice, AppVoice, App
Compatible DevicesAmazon Alexa,
Google Assistant
Amazon Alexa,
Google Assistant
BrushesDual Multi-Surface
Rubber Brushes,
Edge-Sweeping Brush
Dual Multi-Surface
Rubber Brushes,
Edge-Sweeping Brush
CameraAbsentPresent
Dustbin Capacity0.5 L0.5 L
Filter TypeHEPAHEPA
Battery Capacity1800 mAh1800 mAh
Runtime75 mins75 mins
Charging Time2 hours2 hours
Battery TypeLithium IonLithium Ion
Suction Power10x*10x*
Airflow8 CFM8 CFM
Warranty1 year1 year
Automatic Dirt Disposal SystemAbsentAbsent
Mapping TechnologyPresentPresent
SLAM TechnologyPresentAbsent
vSLAM TechnologyAbsentPresent
iAdapt 1.0 NavigationPresentAbsent
iAdapt 3.0 NavigationAbsentPresent
Virtual Wall BarrierAbsentPresent
No-go ZonesAbsentPresent
Cliff SensorPresentPresent
3-Stage Cleaning SystemPresentPresent
Dirt Detection TechnologyPresentPresent
Personalized Cleaning SuggestionsAvailableAvailable
Number Of Maps Saved1010
Noise Level65 dB62 dB
Extra FilterAbsentPresent
Extra Side BrushAbsentPresent
Roomba i3 vs. i7 Comparison

Let’s discuss the points covered in the above table in more detail.

Design compared: Roomba i3 vs. i7

Their design is quite different from one another. The i3 has a ring with a woven pattern on the top rim, which is grey in color. All the other sections have a Charcoal Grey color. The i7 has an aesthetic look. It looks quite elegant with a Charcoal Grey body and a rounded black rectangle on the top.

Even though they look different, they are of the same size. But you will find that the i3 is a bit lighter in weight. Frankly, that doesn’t make much of a difference.

Does the Roomba i3 have a camera?

No, the i3 does not have an onboard camera. But the i7 does. It has a top-facing camera.

Considering that the i7 has a more elegant design and is also equipped with an onboard camera, we prefer it over the other model.

Which Roomba gives better battery performance?

Battery section of a Roomba
Battery section

Typically, we would expect at least some kind of difference between the battery performance of two vacuums on different ends of the price spectrum. But that’s not true in this case. Both give literally the same battery performance.

They both have lithium-ion batteries with a capacity of 1,800 mAh. Both batteries take the same amount of time to charge, which is 2 hours. They even give the same runtime of 75 minutes. This is a little unusual in robovacs, which are so different from one another.

It’s not right to pick one over the other in terms of battery performance, as both of them deliver the same performance and have the same battery capacities.

Roomba navigating the floor
Roomba navigating the floor

There’s a noteworthy difference between the navigation capabilities of these vacuums. The i3 does not have an onboard camera. It navigates with the help of sensors like a gyroscope. Its navigation is based on SLAM technology. iRobot has recently rolled out an update that enables this model to map your home. However, not having a camera puts limitations on its map generation capabilities.

The i7, on the other hand, has a top-mounted camera, so it uses the vSLAM navigation technology. That, combined with the iAdapt 3.0 navigation tech, makes it much better at navigation and mapping. The maps created by it are also more accurate.

As the i7 has a camera, advanced adaptive navigation, and an enhanced approach toward mapping, it is a better choice.

Which one has a better cleaning performance: i3 or i7?

Roomba cleaning performance
Roomba cleaning performance

The i3 uses the same cleaning technologies as the i7. Their 3-Stage Cleaning System carefully loosens dirt from the ground, lifts it up, and then sucks it in the dustbin. This ensures all dust from the ground is collected into the bin.

They also have a special Dirt Detection Technology that identifies areas that have more dust and takes more effort to clean those spots. Even though the i7 is a higher-end model, it gives a similar cleaning performance as the i3.

So, if advanced navigation is not your primary requirement, the i3 will satisfy your cleaning needs almost as good the i7.

Which robovac comes with more accessories?

The i7 comes with a few additional accessories that are not present in the i3. Those include:

  • 1 Dual Mode Virtual Wall Barrier
  • 1 Extra High-Efficiency Filter
  • 1 Extra Side Brush

Here’s a detailed list of what you will get on purchasing each product.

Roomba i3Roomba i7
1 Robot Vacuum1 Robot Vacuum
1 Home Base Charging Station1 Home Base Charging Station
1 Extra High-Efficiency Filter1 Power Cord
1 Dual Mode Virtual Wall Barrier (2 AA Batteries included)
1 Extra High-Efficiency Filter
1 Extra Side Brush
List of items available with the product

Since extra accessories are only present with the i7, that would make the i7 the better option to purchase. Otherwise, you will have to spend extra money to purchase these items separately. You can opt not to buy the virtual wall barrier, as the i7 has no-go zones. But you have no option but to buy the filter and side brush, as you will eventually need to replace them.

How often do you change the Roomba filter?

The Roomba filter needs to be changed every 4 to 6 months, based on your use. You have to take out the old filter and replace it with a new one.

How long is a warranty on a Roomba?

The typical warranty period for a Roomba is 1 year. You can buy an extended warranty of 2 years or 3 years at an extra cost. The i3 and i7 both have a limited warranty of 1 year.

Conclusion

The Roomba i3 and i7 are two really efficient robot vacuums. The former gives the best features in the price range. Its cleaning performance is note-worthy, considering that it matches with some of the high-end vacuums. If you are looking for a budget-friendly vacuum, then i3 is a good choice.

But if budget is not the issue, definitely go for the i7, as it has enhanced features. The better navigation capabilities of the i7 will give you a targeted cleaning experience. Plus you will get some additional accessories with the i7.

FAQs

Does Roomba i3 do mapping?

Yes, Roomba i3 can do the mapping. Earlier, it did not have the mapping feature. But according to a new update, it can map your home using sensors. It can store maps on your iRobot app and use them for future cleaning cycles.

Does Roomba resume after charging?

Yes, both Roomba i3 and i7 can resume after charging. They are automated robot vacuums. They do not need any manual interference in their charging. Once they are low on battery, they automatically run to their Home base docking station. Once charging is completed, they return back to cleaning. They even resume cleaning from the spot they left off for charging.

Is Roomba i3 good for pet hair?

Yes, Roomba i3 is good for pet hair. It has 10x* suction power and airflow of 8 CFM, which allows for efficient picking up of pet hair. It struggles a bit with high-pile carpets, but overall it is very good at picking up pet hair.

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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.

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