Walter Shillington is an avid collector of mechanical timepieces. While he focuses mainly on watches, Walter also reviews household items.
Although the auction would close in less than 18 hours, the brand-new Kobot robotic vacuum had failed to entice an opening bid. I submitted a five-dollar offer before moving on to check the price of a watch I admired.
Imagine my surprise when, the following day, I received an email from eBay. My lowball bid won the auction!
The Kobot RV353 weighs in at 5.25 pounds (2.4 Kilograms). This robotic vacuum spans 11.6 inches and is 2.8 inches in height.
Its body is composed of black and gray colored plastic. The removable dust box is hidden beneath a cover which springs open at a touch of a button. A pair of top-mounted pushbuttons initiate either normal or double cleaning routines. The Kobot’s docking pins, on/off switch and power input are located at the side of this robot.
A pair of rubber-coated, spring-loaded wheels and a caster are used to drive the Kobot RV353 across the floor. Two side-brushes sweep debris toward the center where the main brush, aided by suction, vacuums it into the device’s dust bin.
This robot is equipped with a rechargeable, 11.1V, 2600mAh lithium battery which can be accessed from beneath the unit.
The packaging includes a programmable charging dock, ac adaptor, wet/dry mop, and a user’s guide. A remote control is not supplied.
- Brand: Kobot
- Model: RV353
- Country of Origin: USA/Asia
- Height: 2.8 inch (7.1 cm)
- Circumference: 11.6 inch (29.5 cm)
- Weight: 5.25 lb (2.4 kilo)
- Brushes: Two side brushes and one main rotating brush
- Accessories: Mop plate, wet/dry mop, power adapter, charging cradle, and user guide
- Power source: Li-ion 11.1V, 2600mAh battery
- Dustbin capacity: 400 ml
- Working time: 60 – 90 minutes
- Recharging time: Four to five hours
- Features: Double clean. It also includes a mounting plate with a mop cloth
Techko Kobot, Inc. manufactures and sells safety, security, and office automation products to customers worldwide. Its office products include shredders, laminators, and electric hole punchers. Safety and security products consist of items such as solar-powered alarms, entry alarms, and personal alarms. This company also offers robotic vacuums under the KOBOT brand name. Techko Kobot was founded in 1982 and is based in Irvine, California with operations in the United States, Asia, and Europe.
The Kobot RV353 can be charged by either its docking station or the ac adapter. In addition, the dock can be programmed to schedule daily cleaning routines.
The mopping assembly consists of a mountable plastic plate and a cloth. When in operation, the cloth is dragged across the floor, removing dust. The cloth will function as a damp mop if dipped in water.
A well-written user guide is provided.
The Kobot RV353 is equipped with a variety of sensors. These are used to prevent the robot from falling down steps as well as allowing the device to back away from obstructions and locate its docking station. If the vacuum becomes stuck, it will beep to draw attention.
Kobot’s surprisingly powerful vacuum has the ability to clamber over higher obstacles than several of the more expensive robotic vacuums I have examined. Unfortunately, this budget cleaner is equipped with a limited suite of sensors, and its programming appears to be dated. While a more sophisticated robot will back away, the Kobot tends to bullheadedly force its way onto a ledge from which it cannot extract itself. In situations where it becomes squeezed from above, this vacuum will push forward until it is completely trapped.
The Kobot RV353, however, handles mats and rugs very well. I own a thin Persian rug and an extremely flexible Turkish carpet. These rugs are fitted with fringes. While the Kobot will occasionally become stuck, this happens far less frequently than with the average, main brush equipped, robotic vacuum.
This vacuum does maneuver well over low-pile carpets but, like most of its competitors, cannot adequately handle thicker rugs. Because the robot’s main brush is rather short, more time is required to completely vacuum a carpeted area.
Cords and Cables
Sometimes a robotic vacuum will climb over a cable and become entangled. The Kobot RV353 seldom experienced problems with properly secured cables and cords.
Docking and Battery Life
This vacuum is equipped with a powerful 2600mAh battery which, during my tests, provided a minimum of 90 minutes of use.
The Kobot RV353 locates its docking station by following an infrared signal. The range of the dock’s beacon, however, appears to be limited. When the robot picks up the signal, it rushes headlong toward the dock, smashing into it repeatedly until the vacuum achieves a secure connection.
To ensure the Kobot will properly return to its dock, the following steps must be taken.
- The dock must be situated in a room central to its cleaning area.
- Ensure there are two feet of clear space on both sides of the dock.
- Use double-sided tape to secure the dock to the floor.
Either of the top-mounted pushbuttons will, when depressed, commence cleaning operations. One of them begins a normal routine. The second will initiate double cleaning. In this instance, the robot will recharge to 80% after it completes its original routine. Then it will begin to vacuum again. Double cleaning is useful for larger houses.
A daily cleaning can be scheduled via pushbuttons on the charging dock.
The dustbin should be removed and dumped daily. Its 3M cloth-like filter can be pulled from the bin and tapped gently to remove excess dust.
Examine side brushes weekly and replace when required.
Remove and clean the main brush when required.
The Kobot RV353 is powerful, cleans effectively, and appears to be of decent quality. This budget vacuum, unfortunately, has trouble finding and connecting to its dock. It also becomes stuck more frequently than other robotic vacuums that I have tested. Those searching for additional information can check out the vacuum on Amazon.
Questions & Answers
Question: Can I use the Kobot robotic vacuum for my main floor and my downstairs rec room? Would I have to move the dock to whichever level the Kobot vacuum is cleaning?
Answer: Normally you would leave the dock on the level you clean most often and set the vacuum to automatically clean this area each day. Then, when fully recharged, carry the robot to the other level and push the start button. When the battery runs low, carry the vacuum back to the dock and let it charge. This is a bit inconvenient but, unless you plan to purchase a second robotic vacuum, it is the best method to use.
Question: I have two story house. When cleaning upstairs, will the Kobot vacuum stop at stairs or tumble down?
Answer: This robot is equipped with drop sensors. It will stop at the stairs.
Question: Where can I find a battery for the Kobot RV353?
Answer: I would contact the company you bought the robot from first. If you have no success, check with the manufacturer. Here is their webpage:
Question: I have Turkish rugs with straps on the ends. Would they create a problem for the vacuum?
Answer: Yes. Although the Kobot handles rugs better than most, Turkish rugs--due to the use of double knots--are very flexible and the robot will tend to fold it over and eventually become stuck. Fringes are always a problem for robots with a center brush... the brush tends to ingest the fringe.
Question: One of the side brushes won't spin on my Kobot RV353 slim series vacuum, what do I do?
Answer: It might be clogged up with hair and other debris. Remove the side brush (I believe it can be pulled off) and clean any debris wound around the shaft. Also, clean the underside of the brush where the shaft fits. If this does not solve your problem, contact the manufacturer.
Question: Where can I get new filters for my Kobot vacuum?
Answer: They are available at the manufacturer's website: https://www.techkokobot.com/shop
Question: Where can I get a replacement battery for an RV353 Slim Series vacuum?
Answer: Contact the Kobot website: https://www.techkokobot.com/
Question: Where can I find filters for a Kobot RV 353?
Answer: You should contact Techko Maid Inc. on their Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/category/Company/Te...
Question: Does the Kobot RV353 recharge intelligently?
Answer: The robot will go to its home to recharge when battery power runs low. It will remain there until it is sent out to clean again.
Question: Where can I buy a filter for my Kobot?
Answer: Contact the Kobot website: https://www.techkokobot.com/
© 2018 Walter Shillington
Walter Shillington (author) from Windsor, Nova Scotia, Canada on May 04, 2020:
Hi Larry. All I can suggest is to contact either the dealer you purchased it from or contact the manufacturer:
Larry Ellis on May 04, 2020:
I have cleaned it and the one brush still does not work. Help!!
edd on March 22, 2020:
only work for. for Months now its only moves 10 inches and stops
Walter Shillington (author) from Windsor, Nova Scotia, Canada on December 22, 2019:
I do not believe that Kobot has a Canadian office but, if for example, you purchased your vacuum at Canadian Tire, they might be able to order parts for you. The best option would be to order your part from the company's American website:
Mandy on December 22, 2019:
Can you buy parts in Canada
Walter Shillington (author) from Windsor, Nova Scotia, Canada on April 24, 2019:
This vacuum handles pet hair well.
Dawn on April 24, 2019:
How well does it clean up dog hair..i have one short haired dog and the other with longer hair
Bri on April 24, 2019:
Thank you so much for such a helpful post!