Does Kogan’s new Robovac suck?
Up until this virus swept across the globe my mother in law was kindly vacuuming our house once a week (And visiting her grandson). We have been extremely grateful for her doing this for the past 11 years but now with social distancing and lockdowns are we supposed to vacuum our own house? I bloody hope not!
Enter the Kogan LX10 robot vacuum.
For the past week this quite clever piece of kit has been (mostly) parading around my house twice a day sweeping, vacuuming and occasionally mopping the warzone that is created from kids stuck home from school.
The initial set up was straight forward through Kogan’s ‘Smarter Home’ app. I just followed the onscreen prompts to select wifi and link the device with the app. As with all new tech these days before using it I had to download a firmware update. The whole set up including unboxing, attaching removable components and syncing the app took around 5 minutes.
The unit uses inbuilt lasers and sensors to map your house, which then enables you to set up virtual walls to ensure it doesn’t stray into your man cave and see things that can never be unseen.
After the first run at cleaning the house it had a pretty accurate map of our main living areas. With the map set up it means you can then enable the timer to auto clean at certain times and tell it to do spot cleaning on a pin dropped area or a more intense clean of that spot where the wife told you to use a plate when you were eating the sprinkle covered donut.
I was genuinely impressed with the level of suction as it roamed around the house, it could automatically detect when it moved from our floorboards to the rug and subsequently increased it’s vacuuming power on the rug.
It takes around 40minutes to traverse the 30m2 of accessible floor space in my house and uses about 30% of it’s battery to do so before taking itself back to the charging dock.
I was intrigued by the mopping function so decided to set it a cleaning area in kitchen to mop. There is a small removable tank and mopping pad that attaches to the bottom of the unit. It was almost impossible to fill the tank completely with water due to the bizarre location of the filling cap. The tank itself is also quite small so I wasn’t convinced it would be able to do much mopping.
I was right, it’s more of a gentle wipe than a mop. I found the trick to making it actually do a reasonable mop was to ask it to do a ‘Spot Clean’ so it does a thorough pass of a small area. The trouble with spot cleaning is it will only do that in a 1.5m radios of your pin drop.
- It seems to do a great clean of the house, picking up a lot of dust and debris.
- It’s very simple to use and the app is logically set out.
- Being able to set and forget is a great bonus which I assume is the same on all robovac’s
- It’s very easy to empty, clean and replace the various vacuuming and sweeping components.
- The pricing point compared to other units with similar listed features is fantastic. The RRP on Kogan’s website is $579.99
- It feels the need to tell you what it’s doing all the time and its voice can not be controlled or disabled in the app.
- After one day of use, it completely screwed up Its own mapping and just went off doing its own thing. I lost all control through the app. After closing the app, power cycling the unit, and trying again it was still munted. I ended up having to reset it and start again from scratch.
- If you use the mopping function it won’t stop mopping when it reaches carpet. So only mop if you select a designated area or spot clean. At this stage, the mopping is more a gimmick than a practical function.
- The water tank for mopping is terrible to fill and empty.
- The charging base is very light and doesn’t have non stick pads to stop it moving around, so when the unit is trying to dock it moves the base around and finds it hard to connect. I ended up having to tape it down.
- The vac never cleans near the charging base.
- The App itself does not support accessibility settings on the iphone, so for me who uses large system fonts the app was a tad ugly.
Would I buy it?
I’m impressed with it’s general cleaning and power….but I wouldn’t buy it.
The pricing is a bit hefty for something that still has quite a few tweaks required and when will it lose it’s mapping and app control again, it could happen at any moment it seems.
Interestingly since beginning this review Kogan have dropped the price significantly to $469 from $580. Not sure if this is to get them out the door or because it’s not quite competing with the big boys in terms of functionality.
Kogan sell another model R50 with very similar features for $549