Review of the Kobot RV353 Slim Series Robotic Vacuum
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 mounting plate with 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 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.
© 2018 Walter Shillington