Roomba 635 Reviews: Do We Still Recommend It in 2020?

If you are in a hurry and just want to find out if we still recommend the Roomba 635 in 2020, then the short answer is NO. Instead, we recommend the Roomba 675.

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iRobot Roomba 675 Robot Vacuum-Wi-Fi Connectivity, Works with Alexa, Good for Pet Hair, Carpets, Hard Floors, Self-Charging
  • CLEAN SMARTER - The 600 series is a great way to begin cleaning your home smarter. Just schedule it to clean up daily dirt, dust, and debris with the iRobot HOME app or your voice assistant. - for effortlessly clean floors.
  • LOOSENS, LIFTS, & SUCTIONS - The 3 Stage Cleaning system & Dual Multi-Surface brushes grab dirt from carpets & hard floors, an Edge-Sweeping brush takes care of corners & edges.
  • LEARNS YOUR LIFE LISTENS TO YOUR VOICE - Learns your cleaning habits to offer up personalized schedules, while Google Assistant & Alexa allow you to start cleaning with just the sound of your voice.
  • ADAPTIVE NAVIGATION - A full suite of advanced sensors allow Roomba to navigate under & around furniture, & along edges. Cliff Detect keeps it from falling down stairs.
  • SENSES & ELIMINATES DIRT - Dirt Detect Sensors alert your robot about dirtier areas of your home, like high-traffic spots, & cleans them more thoroughly.

Because I live in a busy home, it is hard to keep things clean. My kids and their friends are always tracking in dirt from the outside, not to mention specks of glitter from craft projects. No matter how much I swept or vacuumed, there always seemed to be another mess to clean. That is when I thought a Roomba might be a good solution for a consistently clean home.

Things to Consider Before Buying a Roomba

iRobot designed the Roomba line of robotic vacuum cleaners to clean dry dirt and dust from your floors. The advantage of owning a Roomba is that you have a vacuum cleaner that can run several times a day without much effort on your part. Just set it running, and it will vacuum until it needs to charge again. The Roomba is the ideal cleaning tool for someone who lives in a small apartment or single-story dwelling. It is also helpful for handling houses like mine where there is constant traffic bringing dirt inside.

However, if you are someone who likes to control the clean, a Roomba may not be for you. Will you be able to stand it if you can see dirt in one corner while the robot is roaming another part of the house? Instead, you will want to keep your trusty handheld vacuum ready to clean up every mess as it happens.

Also, if you do not like working with new technology, you will probably want to stick with an upright vacuum. Some people just love having a remote control cleaner on patrol. Other people find any kind of technology, especially working with a smartphone app, too frustrating to be helpful.

Finally, if you have an older adult in your home with balance issues, you may want to consider a different solution. Roombas move slowly and do not present a major tripping hazard, but an older person with impaired vision could trip if they do not expect the robot to be there.

Roomba 635 Reviews: Presenting the Product

The Roomba 635 is a basic version of the iRobot vacuuming line. It navigates through your home using sensors that prevent it from hitting obstacles or falling downstairs. Compared to more recent versions, it uses simpler technology, which, according to Roomba 635 reviews, can be a plus or a minus depending on your point of view. This robot does what it is designed to do, pick up dirt and dust from your floor freeing you to do other projects or simply relax. The Roomba 635 is one of the last iRobot models without wireless communication capabilities, so if you want to program your Roomba with a computer or smartphone, you will want to look at one of the more recent models.

Pros:

  • Hand-free vacuuming
  • Simple operation
  • Low maintenance, just empty the dustbin and wipe the sensors

Cons:

  • NiMH battery holds a shorter charge than later models with lithium-ion batteries
  • No HEPA filter
  • No timer for vacuuming while out of the house.

Features of the Roomba 635

If you are the sort of person who likes to keep things simple, the Roomba 635 is one of the simplest models in the iRobot line. There are no bells and whistles on this machine, just robotic cleaning power for your home. While there is a remote control available separately for the unit, most people just stick with the basic controls on the robot’s body.

Cleaning at the Touch of a Button

This cleaning sentinel has three control settings that you trigger by pressing buttons on top of the machine. Unless you command it with the push of a button, it will wait patiently on its charging dock. You cannot program the Roomba 635 to start at a certain time or cover a certain area. If you want it to handle a specific mess, you will have to carry the unit to the location. The three control buttons are clean, spot and dock.

Clean

“Clean” is the all-purpose setting for the Roomba 635. Once you press this button, the unit will take off, vacuuming along its merry way until it hits a barrier. It will then change direction, gradually cleaning the floor. In about an hour, after its charge gets down to ten percent, it will automatically head for its charging base. Once it has recharged, you can send it out on another cleaning mission.

Spot

The “Spot” button is the one to push for localized messes. For example, if there has been a cereal spill around a high chair and you lack a hungry dog, you can place the Roomba 635 at the center of the spill. Once you engage this setting, the unit will set out traveling in a spiral so that it fully covers a circle that is three feet in diameter. This is perfect for those dining table accidents and glitter spills at the craft table.

Dock

The “Dock” button is the easy way to get your Roomba 635 out of the way. Wherever it is in a cleaning cycle, this button overrides the last command and sends the unit back to its charging dock. This may be what you want to do if unexpected company comes. Let’s face it. Sometimes, small children think the Roomba is another plaything, and it is best to let it rest while they are visiting.

Sensors for Reliable Operation

The Roomba 635 works with a set of three sensors to do its job and keep it safe. These sensors are the secret to the unit’s convenience, helping it avoid obstacles while still covering the area you need to be cleaned. Without the bump, drop and dirt sensors, the unit would be a roving chunk of plastic.

Bump

The Roomba 635 is not a speed demon. In order to thoroughly clean your floors, it moves rather slowly. This also protects the unit from damage and prevents it from doing damage to obstacles. When the Roomba 635 comes near a wall or other obstacle, it slows down and makes contact. If the obstacle allows it to pass, like a bed skirt, the unit will continue. If the object is solid, the unit will change direction, attempting to go around it. Some helpful tools you can order separately are virtual barriers supplied by iRobot. These units activate the bump sensor, steering the Roomba away from an area. You can position these in places like pet food bowls or top-heavy items you would rather the Roomba avoid completely.

Drop

No one wants their poor Roomba falling down the stairs. The “Drop” sensor makes it possible for the Roomba 635 to clean the edge of a top stair without fall down. If the Roomba senses uneven ground or a drop, it will slow down to determine the height. Your Roomba 635 will make its way over small humps like transition strips but will avoid larger drops.

Dirt

The “Dirt” sensor helps the Roomba 635 do a thorough cleaning job. This sensor, located under the unit, helps it recognize loose debris that may have been missed on an initial sweep. When this sensor activates, the Roomba 635 will spin in a circle, vacuuming until no bits of dirt and dust remain.

Charging Station for Easy Storage

The Roomba 635 communicates with its charging station, automatically returning home when it needs a charge. The Nickel-Metal Hydride battery in the unit takes about four hours for a complete charge that gives about an hour of active vacuuming time. According to iRobot, the home base should have at least one and a half feet of open space on either side and four feet of open space in front.

The Reviews are In!

Because this is an older model, it can be a little challenging to find reviews. However, I did my homework and found that most Roomba 635 reviews were quite positive. Most owners appreciate the simplicity and reliability of the machine. As one review put it, “Finally something that does what it is supposed to do!”

Alternatives to the Roomba 635

If you are in the market for a robotic vacuum, there are several viable alternatives to the Roomba 635.

#1 Roomba 675

iRobot Roomba 675 Robot Vacuum-Wi-Fi Connectivity, Works with Alexa, Good for Pet Hair, Carpets, Hard Floors, Self-Charging

The main difference between the Roomba 635 and 675 is control. For a similar price, you can have a Roomba with the basic cleaning features of the 635 but with added wireless connectivity. The iRobot app allows you to activate your vacuum while you are out of the house.

Roomba 635 

  • Battery: Nickel- Metal Hydride
  • Sensors: Bump, drop, dirt
  • Control: Manual

Roomba 675

  • Battery: Lithium-ion
  • Sensors: Bump, drop, dirt
  • Control: Manual and wireless

For more information on the Roomba 675, click here. You can also read our comparison between the Roomba 690 and 675.

#2 Roomba 960

iRobot Roomba 960 Robot Vacuum- Wi-Fi Connected Mapping, Works with Alexa, Ideal for Pet Hair, Carpets, Hard Floors,Black

The Roomba 900-series represents a jump in price of several hundred dollars. With that price point, you get a more refined sensor system that visually maps the room, improving cleaning efficiency. It also has wireless connectivity and a stronger vacuum system.

Roomba 635

  • Battery: Nickel- Metal Hydride
  • Sensors: Bump, drop, dirt
  • Control: Manual

Roomba 960

  • Battery: Lithium-ion
  • Sensors: Visual mapping sensors
  • Control: Manual and wireless

Check out the Roomba 960 here.

Our Roomba 960 comparisons:

#3 Shark ION RV720

Shark ION Robot Dual-Action Robot Vacuum Cleaner with 1-Hour Plus of Cleaning Time, Smart Sensor Navigation and Remote Control (RV720)

The Shark Ion RV720 has a similar price-point to the Roomba 635. While it does not have wireless connectivity, a programmable remote control comes standard with the unit. The remote allows you to put your cleaner on a daily schedule.

Roomba 635 

  • Battery: Nickel- Metal Hydride
  • Sensors: Bump, drop, dirt
  • Control: Manual

 Shark Ion Robot Vacuum R72

  • Battery: Lithium-ion
  • Sensors: Bump, drop, dirt
  • Control: Programmable remote

Learn more about the Shark Ion Robot Vacuum RV720 here.

Conclusion

It takes a lot of energy to maintain a clean house, especially if you have children or pets. A robotic vacuum like the Roomba 635 is a simple cleaning solution without frills. However, since it is an older model, it can be difficult to find online. Click here to learn more about the Roomba 675, a robotic vacuum with a similar style but a more advanced battery and controls.

Our Roomba 600 Series reviews:

Our Roomba 600 Series comparisons:

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