iRobot’s brand of Roomba vacuums has been around for some time now. Homeowners love how the robotic cleaners go about cleaning their homes as they relax or concentrate on something else. At the core of the minimal supervision required for Roomba vacuums lies the ability to dock and recharge by themselves. So, what happens when the Roomba won’t dock?
That would be a considerable inconvenience, wouldn’t it? A Roomba that can’t return to home base to recharge would mean you have to be present for it to work efficiently. Who would want that?
Fortunately, we have just what you need to fix the problem. But before we get to that, it would be best if we got to the root of the issue.
Why Would a Roomba Not Dock?
There are several reasons why a Roomba wouldn’t dock.
Firstly, it could be that you moved the vacuum midway through the cleaning session. Consequently, the robot wouldn’t find its way back to the home base when left to resume cleaning. That is due to the disruption in the connection the vacuum had created with the home base.
Secondly, your Roomba wouldn’t dock if the home base doesn’t have a source of power. The home base needs to be plugged in for the vacuum to quickly find its way back and recharge.
Additionally, it could be that you have placed the virtual walls between the vacuum and the home base. Virtual walls come with various Roomba brands and prevent the vacuum from leaving certain areas as it cleans.
If virtual walls are in between the vacuum and the home base, the Roomba won’t dock. That’s because they too emit infrared beams that might interfere with those of the base.
If you have multiple home bases set up within the same room, then the Roomba would have issues docking. That’s because each active home base would emit infrared beams, making it difficult for the Roomba to decide where to dock.
Finally, physical objects block the necessary waves required for the vacuum to locate the home base and dock. Such physical obstructions include chairs or tables.
Now that we know the potential causes for a Roomba won’t dock, what could be the possible solutions? See below for guidelines.
Step by Step Guidelines on Fixing a Roomba won’t Dock
If you had moved the Roomba midway through a cleaning session and now it can’t dock and recharge, here’s what to do.
Place the Roomba in such a way that it is about six feet away from the home base but facing it.
If step one above doesn’t work, then it probably means it’s the home base with the issue. Check whether it is connected to the power source. If it is, unplug it then plug it in again.
Check to see whether the home base’s power indicator emits light after every four seconds or blinks once for about four seconds then stops. That will prove to you that the home base you did plug it in.
Please ensure there aren’t any other home bases within ten feet of the Roomba vacuum and its home base. Such could interfere with the infrared beams and prevent docking
Check the home base for any stickers on its bumper. Such may also interfere with the infrared beams that guide the vacuum to dock.
Also, long-pressing the clean button for about 3 seconds might help as it reboots the robot and starts a new session. In the latest session, the Roomba shouldn’t have any issues docking at all.
How Else Can I Solve the Roomba won’t Dock Problem?
Resetting the Roomba should most likely work if the vacuum has no issues. You can easily reset the vacuum by long-pressing the clean button. The display should display “r 5 P” with the illumination of blue light.
You should hear a slight beep, which will inform you that the reset was a success. You can then try docking it again and see if it will return to the home base.
What If It Still Won’t Dock After All those Steps?
If, after trying all the previous steps and the Roomba still won’t dock, you should contact the iRobot customer support. That will mean there is a problem with the vacuum.
Important Points to Remember
- A Roomba vacuum that is full of trash might also have issues docking. If this is the case, roll it over and remove the trash that might be blocking it.
- You also have the option to manually dock the Roomba by pressing the dock key on the vacuum. If within six feet of the home base, the Roomba will dock. If it doesn’t, then it means there is another issue with it.
- You must place the home base well clear of any obstacles. For instance, putting it behind a chair would help as the infrared beams wouldn’t reach the vacuum. It, therefore, wouldn’t dock.
Read Also: Roomba Virtual Wall Not Working
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Q: Is it possible for two bases to work with one Roomba?
- A: Yes, it is. They would, however, have to be bought together with the Roomba. You can then set the Roomba to dock at whatever base is nearest.
Q: Do I have to move the Roombas docking station as well when I move it to another room?
- A: Yes. The Roomba would have difficulties docking with the home base in another room.
Q: Does the Roomba need light to locate the home base?
- A: Yes. The IAdapt navigation system, typical of all Roombas, has a camera that would have issues working in the dark.
Read Also: Does Roomba Work On Thick Carpet
We hope whatever we have discussed here helps you solve your Roomba won’t dock problem. As you can see from the guidelines, solving it is relatively straight forward.
You, therefore, don’t have to call in an expert.