Ecovacs Deebot N8 review

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8.5Expert Score
Ecovacs Deebot N8 review: Basic but solid

The Deebot N8 is fairly basic as far as robot vacuum cleaners go, but if you can pick it up at a discounted price, it will be a welcome addition to your home.

Design
9
Performance
8
Pros
  • Easy to use
  • Cleans well
  • Alexa and Google Assistant controls
Cons
  • Tends to get stuck
  • Requires regular manual emptying

The Ecovacs Deebot N8 robot vacuum is the ideal gateway to automated household cleaning, particularly if you can pick it up on sale.

It doesn’t boast all the bells and whistles of the more expensive robot vacuums, but instead focuses its prowess on what all robot vacuums should do: Vacuuming.

Despite some small hurdles with the app and controls, the simple fact is that having the Deebot N8 roam around our house every couple of days has entirely changed the feeling of our home.

It’s palpably cleaner, and feels fresher than it ever did when we vacuumed manually every week.

Design

ecovacs deebot n8 review

Ever since the very first Roomba, robot vacuum cleaners have had a look. They are typically round, about 15 cm tall, and are big enough for a cat to sit on as a personal chariot.

Which is to say, the Deebot N8 looks like a traditional robot vacuum.

My model is a little white cylinder that we named Luna. Yes, it’s weird to name your robot vacuum, but we bought it during lockdown and needed something to keep our minds busy.

A flip up lid houses the dustbin, while a water container for mopping functions can be found at the back of the cleaner.

ecovacs deebot n8 review

Two brush arms attach to the front sides and spin around while the vacuum sucks, pushing the dirt into the vacuums open maw.

The Deebot N8, like most of the Ecovacs range, has a small cylindrical protrusion from its top, almost like a head, which includes a bunch of the sensors.

Maybe it’s just my home furniture, but this protrusion does prevent the vacuum from reaching underneath our entertainment unit, console, and buffet.

ecovacs deebot n8 review

And any area that the robot vacuum can’t reach is an area I have to manually vacuum, so it definitely holds the N8 back from a perfect score.

But overall, the N8 is a fairly straightforward, functional design.

Performance

ecovacs deebot n8 review

Let’s get this out of the way: The Deebot N8 cannot compare to the likes of a Dyson V15 Detect when it comes to suction power.

It doesn’t compare to a cordless vacuum when you look at bin capacity, either.

But it offers automated convenience. So much so that you find you rarely need to vacuum manually at all.

Setting up the Deebot N8

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The first time you set up the Deebot N8, it runs around the walls and rooms of your home and creates a map.

For that reason, it’s best if you completely clear the floor of everything before that first vacuum.

Otherwise, you’ll find that it gets a little confused when the Lego crate you keep under the kid’s bed isn’t there on the next vacuum.

Once the app has a map, it’s as simple as setting a vacuuming schedule and leaving the Deebot N8 to do its thing.

Until it gets stuck.

Obstacle avoidance

The N8 does a reasonable job of avoiding obstacles. But it’s not intelligent, and that means you need to work around its issues.

For example, the legs of our dining chairs are just wide enough that the Deebot can fit between them. But once it goes in, it cannot ever work out how to get out.

That means we started putting our chairs up on the table before the vacuum was due to do its clean.

It’s still less effort than manually vacuuming, but it’s a bit of a hassle nonetheless.

The other challenge the N8 faces is cables. Somehow, it will always find the edge of a cable that’s dropped to the floor, and pull it into its brush.

So you can’t just set and forget – you need to ensure that the floor is clear every day before the vacuum runs.

Deebot N8’s Vacuuming prowess

ecovacs deebot n8 review

While all these preparation steps seem like a bit of a pain, the truth is that it’s still easier than manually vacuuming.

And the results of having the Deebot N8 clean your home every one to two days is palpable.

You can feel the difference of having had the home vacuumed more frequently. There’s less dust lying around, so you spend less time sneezing.

Because it tries to vacuum in a structured way without overlapping where it goes, there are situations – particularly on hard floors – where it misses scraps of dirt.

But on the whole, it’s remarkable how much it vacuums up every day. We need to empty the dustbin every second vacuum at least.

The battery of the N8 doesn’t quite have enough juice to vacuum our entire 3-bedroom house in one go.

But because it can simply return to the charger and then restart once the battery is full again, this isn’t an issue at all.

Mopping

When it comes to mopping, the N8 does feature a mopping reservoir, but truth be told I have barely used it.

While the regular cleaning of the dustbin and brushes feel manageable, the need to regularly replace or wash the mop brush feels like too much work compared to a mop and bucket.

The Ecovacs app

For straightforward tasks like starting a vacuum or sending the Deebot N8 back to the charger, the app is easy to use.

However, some of the more advanced controls are difficult to find and use.

For example, over Christmas I needed to set a virtual boundary around the Christmas tree. Despite navigating through the app, I ended up having to search for instructions on how to do it because it wasn’t clear.

Similarly, editing the map wasn’t as straightforward as I would have liked, and setting up voice controls through Alexa also took longer than it should have.

Verdict

ecovacs deebot n8 review

I wasn’t overly confident in what a robot vacuum could do when we bought the Deebot N8.

Truth be told, it was an impulse by during Black Friday, at a time when my wife had just returned to work, our two kids were at school, and I was extremely busy.

We needed a bit of help, and I hoped that a robot vacuum would do a good enough job to help us get through.

The reality now is that I cannot imagine our house without a robotic vacuum.

The Deebot N8 is fairly basic as far as robot vacuum cleaners go, but if you can pick it up at a discounted price, it will be a welcome addition to your home.

Buy the Ecovacs Deebot N8 online

AU $498.00
Free delivery
as of 27 May 2024 9:06 am
Amazon.com.au
AU $498.99
AU $599.99
+ Delivery *
Mydeal.com.au
AU $689.99
Free delivery
* Delivery cost shown at checkout.
Product disclosure

The product for this review was purchased by the author.

Author

  • Nick Broughall

    Nick is the founder and editor of BTTR. He is an award winning product reviewer, who has spent the last 20 years writing, editing and publishing technology and consumer content for brands like Finder, Gizmodo and TechRadar.

    View all posts
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