As a society we are continually getting busier and busier leaving little time to clean our homes.  Of course, why clean your house yourself when you can get technology to do it — on your terms and at a time you choose?  That’s what robot vacuums are for.

We have looked at a few robot vacuums here at EFTM in the past so when Ecovacs sent me their latest self-emptying vacuum to check out I was excited to put it through its paces — yes, I hate housework with a passion.  

The new Ecovacs Deebot Ozmo T8+ is a package of the Ozmo T8 vacuum and the Ecovacs Auto Empty Station and sits somewhere between their top-of-the-line version with inbuilt security/pet camera and the cheaper versions without true mapping technology.  The T8 vacuum has just about all of the fancy software technology that the premium model does and includes a self-emptying station — yes it empties itself.

Specific features

The Ozmo T8 uses TrueMapping laser-based mapping and navigation technology to map out your home.  This technology scans, maps and plans an efficient cleaning path for a faster more precise clean — it certainly cleaned my house a lot faster than any other vacuums I have tested in the past.   The precise maps allow each room and region to be given a letter and using this you can clean a certain zone (eg. the kitchen after making a mess baking) or exclude a region that does not need to be cleaned.

The TrueDetect3D technology detects, avoids, and cleans around furniture and everyday objects such as shoes, cords and small toys. The combination of the 3D technology and the TrueMapping allow you to also set virtual boundaries within the app to prevent areas from being cleaned which you do not want it to — we have a couple of rugs where we don’t want the vacuum to clean as it struggles with them, so I have set virtual boundaries over those areas.

The T8 also mops — yes fill the water reservoir (with water obviously), attach the mopping pad and it will automatically mop an area after it has vacuumed it.  You can change the water flow into the mop as well to make it perform an extra-deep mop if your floor is especially dirty.  The water tank was easily big enough to mop my entire downstairs floor with Ecovacs stating that you can cover over 2,000 square feet with the 240ml water tank.  

The battery on the T8 is a decent 5,200mAh battery which was easily big enough to clean my entire downstairs with Ecovacs promising it can last long enough to clean 300 square metres on a single charge.

Speaking of downstairs, the T8 also includes a multi-floor function where you can have a map for upstairs and a map for downstairs and it will detect where it is when you start the clean and clean the appropriate rooms/areas as required.  Unfortunately, at this stage it still cannot go up or downstairs — now that would be a cool robot vacuum feature I’d pay money for.

It empties itself?

Sort of.  The T8 docks at the charging dock (the Auto Empty Station) and the charging dock still charges as per all robot vacuums but this one also empties the bin of the vacuum into the bag that is housed within the dock.  The bag is meant to hold over 30 days of dirt etc and if and when it becomes full the vacuum will tell you when it is time to replace the bag.

With robot vacuums I have found myself needing to empty the dustbin within it after nearly every clean (mostly with loose hair and fibres from rugs/carpets) but the Auto Empty Station stops having to worry about this and provides a true hands-free cleaning solution — perfect for someone who hates to vacuum like me.

So how well does it clean?

Surprisingly well.  I was always sceptical of the robot vacuums and doubted whether they would have the power to clean a house as well as my wife expects it to be cleaned — she is extremely fastidious.  The T8 is yet another example of a robot vacuum that can efficiently clean a house such that it not only looks clean but feels clean.  Of course, it may struggle to match the power of a top-of-the-line Dyson but will easily suffice if you set it to do a clean a few times a week.

Yes, you can easily schedule cleans for times when you aren’t home — for example we have it set to clean at 930am on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.  If you want it to clean outside of these times it is simply a matter of starting a clean from within the app — or, after adding it to your Google Home or Alexa app, telling Google Assistant or Alexa to start the vacuum.

Speaking of the app it is an extremely easy app to use with setup a breeze and use a simple step by step process with the app guiding you along.

Is there anything I didn’t like?

Aside from the inability to go up or downstairs, which I dare say is a long way off in the affordable robot vacuum future, the only issue I had with it was that on the first clean after daylight savings ended it cleaned at 830am instead of 930am.  Not a huge issue as the dog had already woken me up but it did surprise me that it did not change the cleaning time based on the time within the app — this is probably because I didn’t open the app to update the time on the Sunday because come Wednesday it cleaned at the correct time.

So why buy this robot vacuum?

The higher end Ecovacs robot vacuums all include their TrueMapping and TrueDetect3D technology which results in an accurate map and the ability to clean a house fast and efficiently, without sucking up or getting stuck on any of the kid’s/dog’s toys.  The T8 is perfect as you are not paying for any extra functionality that many most of us do not need — such as a sentry camera attached to the vacuum but the functionality you are paying for adds a lot of benefit to the vacuum.

I have used vacuums without this TrueMapping and TrueDetect3D technology and would never really recommend them as you cannot exclude areas virtually and instead need to buy special magnetic tape to keep the vacuum away from certain areas.

The only downside to this vacuum is the price but if you shop around and wait for sales you should be able to get it a bit cheaper — but in the end if you hate cleaning with a passion like myself or just would rather not have to deep clean with a vacuum yourself every single week then the RRP of $999 is worth it.

The DEEBOT OZMO T8+, featuring the DEEBOT OZMO T8 and Auto Empty Station, is available now with an RRP of $1,299 from The Good Guys.

The DEEBOT OZMO T8 is available with an RRP of $999 from & The ECOVACS OZMO-Auto Empty Station for the T8 AIVI and T8, is available now with an RRP of $399 from JB Hi-Fi & Godfreys.