Review: Ecovacs Deebot T30 Pro Omni Robot Vacuum Cleaner

Ecovacs Deebot T30 Pro Omni Robot Vacuum Cleaner
Ecovacs Deebot T30 Pro Omni Robot Vacuum Cleaner Review by Witchdoctor

Summary

Ecovacs Deebot T30 Pro Omni Robot Vacuum Cleaner

PAT PILCHER is something of an expert in hi-tech robot vacuum cleaners and he explains how this sucky number really is the business.

$1999

Vacuum cleaning. The mere mention of it gives me hives. What is there to like about it? I could relax or do something productive and fun (such as crafting reviews for your reading pleasure) or push a noisy, heavy machine around my house to pick up dust and detritus. It’s a no-brainer. Unfortunately, my house won’t vacuum itself – at least, that was until I got my hands on a robot vacuum cleaner. I’ve had my fair share of these wonders, which have been steadily improving, offering more bang for a buck. A case in point is the latest from Ecovacs, the Deebot T30 Pro Omni which is priced at a reasonable (compared to competing brands) $1999, making it decent value for money.

Ecovacs’ new robo-sucky/scrubby machine is packed with useful features. These include hot water mopping for washing hard floors and an extending mop for optimised edge cleaning. Best of all, however, is its base station, which, at 480 x 490 x 409mm, is far easier to place compared to its earlier and much larger siblings.

It sports a removable dust bag and two water tanks on its top (one supplies clean water for the mops and the other takes the dirty water resulting from the base station cleaning the mops). The clean and dirty water tanks have handles, making them easier to transport to the sink for refilling/emptying and cleaning. Ecovacs also earns brownie points with the base station as it now has a fully detachable baseplate, making it much easier to clean (ironically, most robo-vac base stations are a blind spot for robot vacuums).

Design-wise, the T30 is the usual flattened round shape. It has a LiDAR on its top which generates very precise, three-dimensional maps of your home. Also on the top are three buttons for returning to base, activating Kiko (more on this later) and pausing cleaning. The top is covered by a removable panel. In addition to the LiDAR, the T30 has an infrared 3D sensor on its front to detect obstacles. Like most other robo-vacs, the T30 has two rotating mops and a side brush/roller brush vacuum combo. Ecovacs has cleverly designed the roller brush with ZeroTangle technology, which is supposed to prevent tangles around the brush using a built-in comb. So far, it’s worked reasonably well, handling our greyhound fur deposits around the house just fine, but it’s early days. The build quality of the T30 looks and feels solid too.

On a less positive note, however, is the iOS/Android Ecovacs app, which has a few curious limitations. While the map that the T30 generates is accurate and there is an option to edit it, merging or separating rooms was incredibly irritating. During the mapping process, the T30 had somehow combined my study and the hallway, and the app would not let me split them no matter how many times I tried. That said, I was able to add furniture, adjust the floor type, set scenarios (specific cleaning settings on a per-room basis) and name each room.

Clunky mapping issues aside, I was pleased with the app’s level of customisation. I could tweak cleaning settings, including suction power, mop water flow, cleaning speed and the number of passes. An Intelligent hosting mode can also automatically adjust cleaning settings based on dirt levels the T30 detects.

Additionally, the app can advise when brushes and filters need replacing. Still, there’s no link to the Ecovacs store for replacements, which strikes me as a missed opportunity. What I’d like to see in future updates to the app is the ability to import house maps from older Ecovacs robots – which could save a huge amount of fuss and bother, significantly streamlining setup – and a link to an Ecovacs accessory store for consumables like vacuum bags and replacement brushes.

After a quick and relatively painless setup process, where I scanned a QR code on the T30 using the Ecovacs app, which then paired my phone and my home Wi-Fi with the T30, I was good to go. Total setup time is now just minutes thanks to built-in Bluetooth pairing which makes working with mesh Wi-Fi networks much less of a hassle than with earlier models. Once the T30 had mapped my home, I charged it up and set it to work cleaning while I had a wee lie down and a cuppa.

Initially, it did a terrible job of obstacle avoidance, but this is to be expected. Like earlier Ecovacs models, the T30 uses machine learning to figure out the layout of your home, which means that with each clean, its navigation abilities are hugely improved. After several cleans, object avoidance definitely works as advertised.

Once I’d optimised cleaning settings using the scenario option, the cleaning results were close to what I’d get with traditional vacuum cleaning/mopping. A particularly nice feature is edge optimisation, which sees one of the spinning mops extended out to the side of the T30, allowing it to get into edges and next to kickboards for a proper scrub and clean. The results are a marked improvement over the already good results I got from my older model.

This largely comes down to the T30’s impressive 11,000Pa suction power. This meant it effortlessly sucked up dirt from both the many rugs around our house and Matai floors. Along with its super sucky powers, the integrated bristle roller helped to lift debris and pet hair. Another nice touch is that the T30 can detect carpets and will give you the choice in the app of lifting the mops, ignoring the carpet, or mopping the rug. Choosing the high-powered vacuum-only option in two passes gave good results. Finishing everything off with a mop was the cherry on top.

The T30 also plays nice with Alexa/Google Assistant and has the Yiko voice assistant baked in. Yiko allows you to say, “Hey, Yiko, clean the…” In use, I found Yiko functionality was more of a miss than a hit, and I soon gave up saying “Hey Yiko” as it rarely detected my voice (but would curiously respond to our TV, which was definitely not saying “Hey Yiko”). Having mapped and named each room, I could get Alexa to send the T30 into any combination of rooms for a quick clean, while I had a cuppa and relaxed. Needless to say, this feels slightly magic and extremely decadent.

The T30 operates fairly quietly, especially on the lower vacuum power settings. Its battery life is also good. I got a full house clean with several returns to the base station for vacuum bag emptying, and there was plenty of charge to spare. Should the battery run low, the T30 can also return to the base station, charge, and then resume the cleaning once topped up.

The Ecovacs T30 is both an affordable and capable wee robotic wonder. Once its machine learning had figured out the layout of our home, it delivered surprisingly decent cleaning results. The smaller base station is also a real bonus, making the T30 easy to place. Combined with its capable cleaning chops and reasonable sticker price, the T30 earns itself a gold badge.

https://www.ecovacs.com/nz

 

Pat has been talking about tech on TV, radio and print for over 20 years, having served time as a TV tech guy and currently penning reviews for Witchdoctor. He loves nothing more than rolling his sleeves up and playing with shiny gadgets.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Give a little to support Witchdoctor's quest to save high quality independent journalism. It's easy and painless! Just donate $5 or $10 to our PressPatron account by clicking on the button below.

Witchdoctor straight to your inbox every 2nd week

Authors

Advance Paris - Designed with French flair. Amplifiers, Streamers, CD players and more www.pqimports.co.nz
Previous Story

World’s Worst Records – Bruno Mars

Next Story

Crafty Corner: winter hops

Latest from Accessories

Go toTop