The new line from Ecovacs adds a few perks to their already rugged robot vacuums – a quieter device, as well as a way for the robot to dump the dust and debris it collects, all at the same price. The new N8 + is one of two new Ecovacs robot vacuums debuting today (the other is the N8 Pro +.) But we’ve been testing the new N8 + since last week, to see how it functions. The vacuum and mop stand out, as does the ability for the N8 + to really take care of emptying its cleaning bin on its own.
At $ 599, this is still a moderately priced robot vacuum, not the most expensive but not the most economical. Still, with the automatic dump station now launched, the combination really makes it a robot vacuum to consider.
Bin empties from above with an easy-lift handleGearBrain / Lauren Barack
What is the N8 +
The Ecovacs N8 + looks a lot like other robot vacuums that Ecovacs has offered in the past, with a design similar to the Deebot Ozmo T8. It is round with a bin that empties from the top and two brushes that sweep the debris as it moves. You also get a power cord, the auto dump station, and an additional device that allows people to truly stay touch-free, as the vacuum can remove dust and litter that it has accumulated while wandering around your space.
The N8 + also works as a mop, and there’s a mop attachment, plus a water tank on the front. In the box you get two options to use with the mop: a washable pad and a pack of 10 disposable microfiber pads.
To get the N8 + up and running, all you need to do is plug in the vacuum cleaner and press start. But if you want to take advantage of smarter features, from planning to creating virtual borders, it is essential to link the robot to the Ecovacs iOS and Android app.
The app offers a number of unique features that you simply cannot grasp from the robot itself. The N8 +, like most robot vacuums, cuts through and creates a map of your space. You can then create virtual barriers, keeping the robot out of a specific room, for example, adjusting the power level of the light vacuum cleaner to a maximum +, and even the frequency at which you want the light to be vacuumed. vacuum cleaner cleans daily.
To connect to the app, you will need to connect the robot to your Wi-Fi, then download and sign up for an Ecovacs account. These will then unlock additional features and also set the stage for connecting the robot to intelligent assistants, so that it can be controlled by voice.
Control the Ecovacs N8 + via the Ecovacs appGearBrain / Lauren Barack
I found the vacuum to be sturdy, doing a really good job of picking up dust and even dog hair in my space. The N8 + automatically adjusted to a higher suction level when it encountered carpets in my apartment, and as promised, I found it to be quieter than other vacuums we’ve tested in the past.
Tellingly, the vacuum didn’t leave dust trails, often overflowing trash cans, which some robot vacuums did. This may be due to the fact that the robot vacuum cleaner can empty its own bin, and therefore takes care of it if it is forgotten.
It wasn’t the softest of vacuums, meaning it bumped into things to get a feel for where the robot could and couldn’t go, as the N8 + was mapping it. Some robots do a better job, I think, of reading the obstacles in front of them without bouncing off a table leg or sofa. The N8 + was not brutal, but there was contact. A concrete example? I forgot to take a phone charger off the floor, and the N8 + returning to its dock brought this charger with it.
The N8 + Pro, which we haven’t tested, includes a tool called TrueDetect, which uses 3D lighting technology to help it avoid objects, from furniture to cords, so it doesn’t bounce off them – or don’t catch them.
The vacuum can run 110 minutes on a single charge. For some understanding of what that means in terms of how much the N8 + can clean, my entire 1,100 square foot apartment was cleaned in 41 minutes. If the vacuum is weak, it returns to the charger so that it can complete its cleaning job.
Automatic emptying station
The automatic dump station is a device that has been around for some time at Ecovacs, and other brands offer them as well. Typically, however, they can be an additional cost as they were when first launched. With the N8 +, the automatic dump station is included. It’s a good idea, with the concept behind them that the robot vacuum can go home, recharge, and remove any dust, dirt, or whatever it has collected on its own, without you having to empty the bin. For some homes, people may need to do this twice during a series of vacuuming, especially if there is a pet.
Early versions of these types of stations did not always work very well. The robot vacuum would have a hard time re-docking and the station would not always collect everything. In addition, these maneuvers are noisy, with the suction to extract the very audible dust.
With the N8 + we found that most of the time the station worked just fine, everything came out of the small bin of the vacuum cleaner itself. Debris is collected in a vacuum bag inside the main station, which seals so that dust is not blown back into the room. This is no small feat, because anyone who empties a robotic vacuum cleaner trash knows that often a little dust gets back into the air when you put them in the trash.
The N8 + station is still loud, however, with a decibel level high enough that we can hear it operating from three rooms through a closed door. It’s amazing. Keep in mind, however, that the entire process of removing dust and vacuuming the bin only takes about 25 to 30 seconds. Even though this happens once a day (in my house, with a big dog it does), it’s not a terrible problem. But it’s worth keeping in mind if you’re planning to clean the robot at night, for example, or during the day if you have kids napping.
The Ecovacs N8 + robot vacuum can handle light cleaningGearBrain / Lauren Barack
To use the N8 + as a mop, install water in the front water tank, then attach the cleaning plate. You get both a washable cleaning pad and a pack of 10 disposable microfiber pads. We tested the microfiber pads and they did a good job, as did the cleaning plate. We were able to adjust the water flow from normal to low and high, and the pad picked up that dirt that never really gets swept away.
I wouldn’t rely on the mop to really get something into the ground. It goes over floors fairly lightly and is best used as a daily wipe rather than as something to do a deep clean. Ecovacs claims that the N8 + uses some kind of technology capable of capturing 99.26% of bacteria. We cannot verify this however.
Along with the cleaning plate and the water tank, you will need to remove both before returning the robot to the charging station. (Water and electricity….) This makes the mop a little less of an automatic function, but it’s still a nice feature.
A water tank attaches to the bottom of the N8 + robot vacuumGearBrain / Lauren Barack
Ecovacs claims the N8 + works with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, and in the past we’ve been able to pair these voice assistants with Ecovacs robot vacuums, including the T8 AIVI. This time, however, I was unable to initially get the Google Home or Amazon Alexa apps to connect to the N8 +, although I knew and could see that the robot was connected to the Ecovacs app and online.
More importantly, I had connections through the Google Home app with the previous Ecovacs robots that I had reviewed, but I couldn’t add the new vacuum. I was able to link Google Home, but had to unlink the Ecovacs account in my Google Home app and then sign in again. From there I was able to add the N8 +.
Overall, for the robot vacuum and auto dump station, you’re going to be spending $ 599, which in our opinion is more than a fair price. The company’s Deebot Ozmo T8, which we reviewed in November, is priced the same but doesn’t include the auto dump station. You can pick it up on Ecovacs.com and Best Buy, and there will be more retail options in April.
Emptying the bin of the N8 + robot vacuum takes about 25 to 30 secondsGearBrain / Lauren Barack
We found the N8 + to be a very good robot vacuum. It cleaned carpets and wood floors, let you customize settings for electric cleaning, scheduling, and more – and at best, also emptied the bin inside the robot vacuum via the dump station. automatic. The N8 + did a great job of cleaning up. Robot vacuums are rarely powerful wringers, but for light cleaning it worked well.
The price of $ 599 is an investment. It’s certainly less than what you might have paid for a robot vacuum plus one of the original dump stations, but it’s still fair. You can choose a cheaper robot vacuum, like the Wyze robot vacuum, but you might not get as many features, including the ability to log into Google Assistant and start the robot with your voice. We were however disappointed that the Amazon Alexa connection did not work for us.
Still, we think this is a good combination of robot vacuum and mop, upgraded for the additional automatic cleaning station at this price point.
- Can empty the bin itself
- Connects to the Google Assistant
- Features include virtual barriers, scheduling, and power modes
- Unable to connect to Amazon Alexa
- The automatic emptying station is noisy
- Cleaning worked but not reliable for deep cleaning