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Review: A robot window cleaner — can it really give us sparkling windows?

Finally -- something that cleans our windows for us, and reduces the chances of us falling over to our deaths. The Ecovacs Winbot 830 is a 22cm square robot cleaner that wipes down windows, glass doors and bathroom panels, as well as other smooth surfaces like laminated cabinet surfaces.

It comes with three Velcro cleaning pads, a bottle of cleaning solution (using other cleaning liquids might ruin the machine), a remote control, a power adaptor, a 1.5-metre extension cord, and a safety suction cup and tether.

HOW IT WORKS

Set-up is straightforward: Attach a cleaning pad to the machine, spray cleaning solution on the pad, plug in, then place the machine on the window or glass door. When switched on, it automatically sticks to a surface. However, it will only move over smooth surfaces – it stuck to my wall but didn’t budge.

The default mode is Automatic, where sensors first take a few seconds to map a cleaning route before the machine starts moving. You can also direct its path manually with a remote control. It took about 5min to clean my 1-metre square window.

 To clean the outside of windows, place the machine on the outer side but stick the safety suction cup and tether on the inside of the window, for safety. On auto mode, once cleaning is complete, the machine returns to its original position so you can reach it. It remains stuck there and emits loud beeps until you switch it off. Very important: I had to be sure to have a good grip on the machine  – especially when it was on the outside. Once the power is cut off, it loses it suction power.

WHAT I LIKED

  • It did a comprehensive and effective job – dirty windows and a dusty glass door were well-cleaned.
  • The remote control let me navigate the robot to corners it couldn’t reach while on auto mode.
  • I was surprised to find it worked on other smooth surfaces too, like the laminated doors of my wardrobe – useful for wiping down grimy kitchen cabinets.
  • The 2.8m cable and 1.5m extension cord gave it a generous 4.3m working distance from a power point.

WHAT COULD BE BETTER

  • It left windows grime-free, but also left streaks from the cleaning solution. The streaks were less obvious after I set it to clean the glass a second time.
  • It’s loud – I couldn’t hear the TV while it worked. And I wish the job-complete beeps would stop after a few seconds, rather than go on continuously until I switched it off.

VERDICT

An interesting and useful machine to clean your windows and glass doors effortlessly, if only it was less loud.

Ecovacs Winbot 830, $1,099, is available at Home-Fix and Hipvan.

This article was first published on Simply Her.

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