iRobot Roomba i7 vs s9 and i7+ vs s9+ Comparison Review

Disclaimer: There may be affiliate links, which means I’ll receive a commission if you sign up for a free trial or purchase through the links, but there is no extra cost to you.

iRobot’s Top 2 smart robot vacuums go head-to-head in this matchup of Roomba titans – Roomba i7 vs s9. Will the newly designed, top of the line Roomba s9 provide a better cleaning or will the Roomba i7 show that iRobot’s original pioneering design will continue to be strong?

If you’re in a hurry, little brother Roomba i7 wins this round against the Roomba s9. While the s9’s new D-shape provides an advantage with tight cleanings against walls and corners, the Roomba i7 provides a better value overall.

iRobot Roomba i7 (7150) Robot Vacuum- Wi-Fi Connected, Smart Mapping, Works...
  • POWERFUL PERFORMANCE AND POWERFUL PICK-UP - Pulls in stubborn dirt and messes with a Premium 3-Stage Cleaning System and 10X the Power-Lifting Suction.
  • GUIDED BY SERIOUS SMARTS - With vSLAM navigation, the i7 learns the layout of your home & builds personal Smart Maps, enabling it to expertly clean & navigate in neat, efficient rows. If it’s running low on battery, it recharges & resumes cleaning.

Last update on 2020-10-30 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

And if you have the choice and budget, go with Plus + version of both for the self-emptying benefit that the Roomba i7+ and the Roomba s9+ provide to you. You can go a month without needing to empty the dustbin because those Clean Base units can hold up to 30 dustbins full of dirt, debris, and dust.

FeaturesNavigation TechnologyFiltrationWiFi CapableScheduled CleaningDust Bin CapacityWeight
#1. Roomba i7
Our Best Pick
iRobot Roomba i7

Check Today's Price
iAdapt 3.0High-EfficiencyYesYes300 ml7.4 Pounds
#2. Roomba s9

iRobot Roomba s9

Check Today's Price
iAdapt 3.0High-EfficiencyYesYes400 ml8.2 Pounds

Features

Size Dimensions

The Roomba i7 stands at 13.31” wide and 3.62” tall. It is similarly designed to other Roombas you might have seen with the HOME, CLEAN and SPOT CLEAN buttons intact where you’d expect to find them. Possibly an iRobot standardization across their model range.

iRobot takes a departure from the design of the Roomba s9 with the rest of the Roomba lineup, It’s a D-shaped design that makes it easier to go under furniture like couches and drawers and clean hard-to-reach corners in the house.

The s9 is smaller at 12.3” wide by 3.5” tall and also features an attractive, premium top panel with a gold disc that is both sleek and minimalistic.

Weight

The Roomba i7 weighs in at 7.44lbs, which is just about similar to the average weight of a newborn baby.

For the Roomba s9, it is slightly heavier by about half a pound or so, weighing in at 8.2lbs.

Both of these vacuums are light enough to carry around yet heavy enough not to be flimsy. That’s great news if you’re wondering how a robot vacuum can stand the rigors of regular house cleaning.

Battery and Capacity

The Roomba i7’s lithium ion battery allows it to run nonstop for about 90 minutes. It takes about 120 minutes for a full charge from empty, which is just about perfect if it needs to stop to charge in the middle of a cleaning job (if you start it up in the mornings when you’re out to work).

One the Roomba s9, a lithium ion battery promises 120 minutes of cleaning time, with 120 minutes of charging time from empty to full. This is around half an hour more of cleaning time compared to the Roomba i7 – which makes the s9 the clear winner this round.

If you have a large house, you may want to go with the s9 as it’ll cover more area on each cleaning run. Those 30 minutes can add up.

iRobot Roomba 960 has the Recharge and Resume feature, so it'll pick up where it left off during the last cleaning
Recharge and Resume

Both of these Roomba vacuums are equipped with the Recharge and Resume feature. If they find themselves running low on battery, they’ll automatically find their way back to the dock to recharge.

Once they’re done recharging, they’ll continue on from where it stopped cleaning to recharge. Recharge and Resume is a handy feature if you’re looking for a fully automated cleaning experience.

iRobot High-Efficiency Filters

A high-efficiency filter comes standard with every purchase of the Roomba i7 and the Roomba s9.

I know, it’s not exactly the industry-leading HEPA filter that traps 99.99% of allergens, but the high-efficiency filter does the job just as well. iRobot’s high-efficiency filters trap 99% of dust, dirt, mold and allergens to keep you and your family safe at home while it cleans.

If you or someone at home is more sensitive, you can buy third-party HEPA replacement filters made for various Roomba models. iRobot doesn’t make their own, but plenty of others do. Amazon has the biggest selection of HEPA filter replacements.

Brushes, Suction & Cleaning Technology

The Roomba i7 is a roaring beast with 1700 Pa of suction power, stronger than at least 70% of robot vacuums on the market today.

However, the quick-spinning side brushes on this Roomba seem to fling out more debris than it sucks in. That can result in the i7 doing extra work to clean the area. Efficiency is the name of the game, and the Roomba i7 might find that there is much room for improvement there.

The suction power of the Roomba s9 is a force to be reckoned with. iRobot has really outdone themselves this time promising 4 times as much suction power as the already powerful Roomba i7.

The i7 and s9 both come with iRobot’s patented dual rubber brushes. The dual brush system helps to prevent pet hair and more from getting tangled in the brushes. That will save you a good amount of time, 60+ minutes, because you’re not detangling all that hair from the brush rollers.

The 600 series, like the 614 and 675, come with one rubber brush and one bristle brush. The bristles are good, but hair also gets tangled rather easily.

If your home is covered in carpet, especially high-pile carpet, the s9 will be the one for you. The superior suction power on the Roomba s9 will do a great job in cleaning the carpet.

The slower moving brushes and powerful motor sucks up more pet hair, dust and debris, even on tough surfaces like high pile carpets.

As mentioned earlier about the D-shape, the Roomba s9 does a great job of getting against the wall and the corners. With the D-shape, the side brush is able to be placed in the corner of the vacuum so it can reach deeper in a corner than the circular i7.

The dustbin capacity of the Roomba i7 is 300 mL and the Roomba s9 is 400 mL. Here’s where it gets interesting with the Clean Base Units for the Roomba i7 Plus and the Roomba s9 Plus.

The Roomba i7 and s9 base models do not self-empty at the dock. That means you need to manually empty the dustbins after cleaning sessions.

For a more hands-off, automated experience that most people envision when buying a robot vacuum, you’ll want to purchase the Roomba i7+ or the Roomba s9+ model packages.

The Clean Base units are made to hold up to 30 dustbins worth of dirt, dust, and debris. Depending on how often you clean, it could be a month before you’ll need to empty the Clean Base bag when it’s full.

I have the s9+ myself and with it running almost daily, I’ll empty the Clean Base dock about every 3-4 weeks. We don’t have pets, so that helps with the Roomba and Clean Base bag not filling up quickly.

Navigation and Mapping System

Both the Roomba s9 and the Roomba i7 use iRobot’s latest VSLAM navigation and mapping software called the iAdapt 3.0 Navigation Technology.

The smart system maps out a blueprint of your home in just under 5 full passes or less, depending on the complexity of your home layout.

Onboard cameras and a wide range of sensors work in tandem to prevent any accidents, bumps or falls when it does its cleaning job around your home.

iAdapt 3.0 comes with Imprint Smart Mapping that allows the virtual maps to be usable in the future for cleaning efficiency. It’ll learn how to clean your home because it knows the layout of your home’s floor plan.

There’s also an awesome feature that allows you to draw rectangles as Keep Out Zones. You draw them on the mobile app and it tells the Roomba to avoid those zones when cleaning.

Stays in bounds with Keep Out Zones | Roomba® s series| iRobot®

All the other Roomba models rely on virtual wall devices that will use infrared signals to create virtual barriers that the Roomba doesn’t enter when it sees the infrared virtual walls. Now, instead of having multiple virtual wall devices around your home, you can just draw the Keep Out Zones on the app.

Mobile App and Voice Assistant Control

You can connect to both the Roomba i7 and the Roomba s9 through your smartphone via the iRobot Home App (available for Android and iOS).

The Home app allows you to access the basic functions of each Roomba. That includes schedule cleaning times and checking in on cleaning progress.

With Imprint Smart Mapping, you’re able to tell the i7 and s9 to clean specific rooms or areas of your house. Did you son just spill cereal in the kitchen? Roomba – time to get to work in the kitchen only. It’s a great feature to have.

Both of these units are also controllable through voice commands via Alexa and Google Home. There are a list of voice commands to control your vacuum completely hands-free. After you setup the WiFi connection and your Alexa or Google Home, you’re good to go.

Maintenance

With regards to self-emptying (a feature only available on the “+” versions of either unit), the Roomba i7 and Roomba s9 do still require a little maintenance.

The app notifies you when the dustbin is full so you’ll have to be present, otherwise it won’t finish the cleaning job until you empty the dustbin and start it back up again.

You should also make a habit of changing filters, cleaning the side wheels, and wiping down the sensors and charging contacts to prevent docking and charging issues. The better you maintain your baby Roomba, the better and longer it’ll clean your home.

Additional Features

Even though they have the Keep Out Zone ability, both units still come with the dual-mode virtual wall barrier device with every purchase.

iRobot Roomba Virtual Wall Barrier that stops the Roomba from Entering an area
Virtual Wall Barrier

The virtual wall is a device which creates an infrared no-entry zone for particular rooms or around certain fragile objects in your home. You may also want to double-check on Amazon in the product listings in case iRobot starts selling different packages with different accessories.

Even though you don’t need it, there’s still a benefit to having the virtual wall device for those one-off occasions where you don’t want the Roomba to enter.

iRobot Virtual Wall Barrier devices - Halo Mode
Virtual Wall Halo Mode

Maybe you have a visitor and you’re both in the kitchen. Set the virtual wall up in the kitchen entrance and the Roomba won’t enter.

Price

The Roomba i7 normally comes in at around a couple of hundred bucks cheaper than the Roomba s9.

It is worth repeating again that these units do not include the self-emptying Clean Base docking stations – which come with the “+” packages of either Roomba.

The Roomba i7+ and s9+ are more expensive, although the Roomba base vacuum itself is the same thing. Basically, the extra money you’re forking out is only for the Clean Base docking stations.

Pros and Cons

Roomba i7:

Pros

  • Good at cleaning surface dirt
  • More affordable than the s9
  • Same navigation software as the s9

Cons

  • More charging time
  • Less efficient at carpets and tough surfaces
iRobot Roomba i7 (7150) - Unboxing, Setup & Review

Roomba s9:

Pros

  • Top-of-the-market suction power
  • Longer running time
  • Better D-shaped design to clean corners

Cons

  • Higher initial investment cost
iRobot Roomba s9 Review - Crazy Good, Crazy Price

Roomba i7 vs s9 Who is Each for?

Roomba i7 : For those who are looking for a robot vacuum that’s modern, powerful and great value for your money.

Roomba s9: If you have a lot of carpet and a large house. For those willing to splurge on the creme de la creme of exclusive robot vacuums available on the market today.

Conclusion

The Roomba i7 and the Roomba s9 are the newest models of Roomba from iRobot and they don’t disappoint. The team at iRobot continues to make better and better robot vacuums.

The Roomba i7 win this comparison with the Roomba s9. The i7 provides the better overall value at the price point and the features you receive in return.

iRobot Roomba i7 (7150) Robot Vacuum- Wi-Fi Connected, Smart Mapping, Works...
  • POWERFUL PERFORMANCE AND POWERFUL PICK-UP - Pulls in stubborn dirt and messes with a Premium 3-Stage Cleaning System and 10X the Power-Lifting Suction.
  • GUIDED BY SERIOUS SMARTS - With vSLAM navigation, the i7 learns the layout of your home & builds personal Smart Maps, enabling it to expertly clean & navigate in neat, efficient rows. If it’s running low on battery, it recharges & resumes cleaning.

Last update on 2020-10-30 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The price you pay for the extra features and added power from the Roomba s9 as compared to the Roomba i7 seems a tad bit too much, especially if you’re budget conscious like us.

Whichever you prefer – your wallet will definitely be the one doing the talking, so choose wisely!