Operating Time (hours)
Warranty and Support
Summary : This is one of the cheapest robot vacuums on the market. And it doesn’t compromise on features or power with that low price.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know that robot cleaners exist. But the higher-end models (such as Roomba) aren’t affordable to most people – the best model is close to $1,000. Sure, they have all of the bells and whistles, but if you have a simple pad, you likely don’t need all of the bells and whistles.
Those looking for something simpler should consider the Neato XV-21. It’s a “basic” machine (or as basic as a freakin’ robot vacuum cleaner can get) that’s more affordable to the average person.
The basics: everything you need to know
Let’s break down the basics of the XV-21 so you can see what we’re talking about.
The price of the XV-21 is is only a quarter of the price of the best models. This still might seem like a lot… but keep in mind that regular vacuums don’t come cheap, either. With this price, not only do you get a killer vacuum, but you also get one that runs on autopilot.
If you look at the pictures, it doesn’t “look” like a high-end machine. Keep in mind that Neato isn’t going for glitz or glamour with this model, though – they’re going for practicality.
One of the ways to cut costs is by compromising on aesthetics. Don’t worry. You still get the full package.
What do you get?
You get the following…
- The actual XV-21 machine (duh)
- Charging station
- Pet/allergy brush
- One virtual wall (this can limit the machine from certain areas of your house)
- Rechargeable batteries
- Instructions and setup guide
What’s the warranty?
You get a 1-year warranty for the actual machine, and a 6-month warranty on the batteries. This is pretty standard for all autopilot vacuums.
The warranty is limited, meaning Neato will honor it if something goes wrong in the machine itself, but they won’t honor it if you do something foolish to break it… like dropping it on the floor, for example. Be careful with it and you’ll be fine.
Specifics: cool features it has
Although it’s a relatively basic unit, that’s not to say that the XV-21 doesn’t contain a few nifty features.
Automatically detects floor levels
Doormats, rugs, tile, etc. – none of these are an issue.
Neato puts sensors on all of their machines. You can use this model on all parts of your house and it will handle the uneven terrain with ease. (It’s actually kind of cool to watch. You can see it in action by watching the video here.)
The only exception is if you have steps or anything that’s noticeably uneven. The machine won’t try to navigate that, because if it lands incorrectly, it could potentially break. If you want to clean two separate floors, you will have to manually move it up and down.
Detects changes to the room on the fly
Maybe you’re cleaning everywhere while your machine is running. That’s not a problem – even if you rearrange an entire room, the XV-21 instantly adapts to any changes in the layout. This is a feature unique to Neato – competitors usually charge extra for this functionality.
Returns to charging station when it’s dead
If you have a small house, you might be able to get by on a single charge. Most reviewers claim that they get about 800 square feet of cleanliness per charge. If yours is larger than that, you’ll need multiple charges to get the job done.
You won’t have to manually charge it back up – it’ll detect the low charge and make its way back to the charging station.
Once it’s charged, it’ll resume the cleaning where it left off.
Newest HEPA filter for clean air
Ever notice that with an older vacuum, you kick up a cloud of dust with every stroke? That’s because the owner of that vacuum neglected the air filters… or they were just old ones that didn’t filter all that well in the first place.
HEPA filters are 2015’s most advanced air filters. When the XV-21 does its thing, there isn’t any excess dust left behind. Everything is vacuumed up, and as long as you dump it all into your trash can without spilling anything, your air will be 100% clean.
This is especially useful for those with allergies. No dust means no allergies. You can’t control the outside air, but you shouldn’t have allergies in your own home… that’s ridiculous. Running the XV-21 daily (there’s a scheduling feature) will ensure that when you arrive home, you’re not sniffling and sneezing.
Incredibly easy to clean
Most vacuums have bags. We think that’s inefficient. Not only are they a hassle to clean, but they always maintains that coating of grime… it’s gross.
The Neato XV-21 doesn’t use bags. You just flip the unit upside down to empty it. It’s a five-second process. Easy.
Ace in the hole: its noise level
This thing is quiet. It’s almost silent – definitely a lot quieter than comparable models in the range of $200 to $300.
A common complaint with the other models is that the vacuum is intrusive. Sure, it’s hands-free, but it disrupts your other activities by being so loud. You don’t have this problem with the XV-21 – you won’t even realize that it’s running unless you physically see the machine.
Don’t think that being quiet means a lack of power. It’s plenty powerful – in fact, quite a few reviewers claim that the quiet XV-21 is more powerful than their louder robot vacuums. It seems that Neato has figured something out that others haven’t.
Who should get the XV-21?
Those with pets and allergies: because of how well it cleans, you’ll never see pet hair anywhere, and it’ll never leave behind dust that can cause allergies to appear. HEPA filters make sure that everything is removed from your floors, no matter how microscopic.
Those on a budget: This is one of the cheapest robot vacuums on the market. And it doesn’t compromise on features or power with that low price. Enough said.
Those who don’t care about looks: sure, it doesn’t look like a super advanced sci-fi invention, but hey, it gets the job done.
Click here to read the reviews on Amazon – overall, it’s only four stars, but most of the “complaints” are related to the batteries. Neato puts very specific battery instructions on the product page and in the manual. As long as you can follow instructions, the batteries won’t be a problem for you.
Click here to purchase on Amazon (it’s the cheapest price we were able to find)