Harriot – 1

Editor’s note: I thought this post might be a good one to run with the holidays around the corner. It was a fun to write last February and if you missed it, well then here is your chance. Don’t miss the little video at the end. 

I can’t take any credit. This was Kathleen’s idea. The first time I heard about a robot vacuum I couldn’t imagine myself ever owning one, but it’s true what they say about “Never say never.” So here I am writing about the newest edition to our household, “Harriet.”

It all started last summer when our friends Matt and Alan were talking about “Rosie,” their iRobot Vacuum. It really works? We were incredulous. What about scatter rugs? What about plush carpet? What about stairs? We were full of questions.

Now we both like things clean, but I have a higher tolerance for floor dirt than Kathleen. It drives her crazy. Our friends were so happy with their hard working Rosie that they were willing to let us borrow her for a trial. The online reviews confirmed what our friends were telling us. These robots were vacuuming floors for happy customers across the country.

While our house isn’t big, we do have three levels to vacuum. So if this thing really does what it claims and to our standards, who would mind giving up the weekly vacuuming and daily sweeping? Not me– and definitely not Kathleen.

Last week I came home to find that Kathleen had taken the plunge. “Harriet” was plugged into her station and charging overnight. We read the directions. Saturday was to be her first day on the job.

Next morning, with coffee in hand, the two of us watched in awe as Harriet vacuumed our entire first floor, then headed back to her station to charge. What a kick! She ran like a champ.

We now have Harriet scheduled to run every morning at 10:30. I’m afraid we might become people whose floors are freakishly clean. I guess there are worse things, right? More time to play my accordion. That will make Kathleen really happy. Kidding.

Now before you run right out and buy yourself a robotic vacuum, remember, everything we own, requires some amount of care and feeding. Harriets included.

Harriet  needs an accessible place for her charging station to live. That might seem obvious but first we had her plugged in under a chair in our dining room. We found she had a hard time getting docked.

She works best if you have relatively uncluttered floorspace. She doesn’t go around and put away our stuff. We still need to do that.

Be prepared to pick up all your charging cords and cables. That’s right, we have already had one casualty with my best pair of headphones. It wasn’t Harriot’s fault, it was my responsiblity.

Do your homework. Read the reviews on various models. Talk to your friends. This is an investment of time, space and money. Make sure it saves you more than it costs.

Editor’s post script: I can make reading reviews easy. I got an email the other day from a company called reviews.com They apparently did a fair amount of investigating of robotic vacuums in general and then the iroomba in particular. Here’s what they had to say….

“We started by compiling a list of 55 robot vacuums from top manufacturers, testing the best models on power, navigation, and the ability to tackle common obstacles. In the end, we found that two of iRobot’s Roomba models rose to the the top. With this information, we created a guide on robot vacuums outlining our research and findings: https://www.reviews.com/robot-vacuum/.”

“Since Roomba was a clear leader in quality, we took it a step further and compared all the top Roomba models to find the best for each person’s unique needs: https://www.reviews.com/robot-vacuum/roomba-vacuum/.

We are very happy with Harriet in our household. Just remember not everything is for everybody.

It’s a great life!

Here’s KB’s review of Harriet “The Roomba Report”! See for yourself just how Harriet rolls.

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