Roomba dies before docking

Roomba dies before docking? Solutions to solve this problem

Having to clean the house every day can sometimes be annoying, especially if you have to deal with the mess kids of pets make. However, Roombas are awesome robot vacuum cleaners that saves you a lot of time and effort. 

As much as these modern electronic devices are easy to use, they could develop complicated and difficult faults, just like any other electronic gadget after some time. 

From the several problems the device can have, some of the common ones include the Roomba dying before it docks, not returning to the base when the battery is not charging, and several others.

Here, we will give some tips and solutions to solve these problems and get your Roomba back in shape.

Roomba dies before docking

The first thing that comes to mind when your Roomba is either dying before docking or isn’t returning to home base after the cleaning cycle would be the reason for that occurrence. 

Just in case you’re new to using the Roomba, the device is designed to return to the home base to recharge and dock once it runs out of battery or it has completed the cleaning cycle. 

You can also manually send your Roomba to dock itself before the cleaning cycle is over or the battery is drained if you want.

Reasons why your Roomba isn’t docking and what to do

There are several reasons why a Roomba dies before docking, even after completing the cleaning cycle.

Charger line damage

Inspect the cable that connects the dock to the wall outlet. Since the docking station is on the floor, a kick or shunt could have resulted in the cable becoming pinched, frayed, or severed. In this case, trying to repair the wires is quite dangerous. It’s better to get a new charger. 

Damaged docking station

Unplug, and pick up the dock. Check the docking station, and if it looks damaged or the plastic is broken. You might be facing a more significant problem if this is the case and may need to replace the docking station.

Broken dock’s adapter

While the charging cable is plugged in, wiggle the end area where the cable goes into the dock to see if it seems loose. It’s possible that even while the cable is correctly connected to an adaptor, the fault might also be with the adaptor. For occurrences like this, you would likely need to buy a new docking station.

Docking station incorrectly plugged 

If you have inspected your cable and you are satisfied with its conditions, now check the docking station and ensure that it’s plugged in the right way. In a busy home where there are lots of movements, anything could go wrong with the connection. Push the charging cable in securely and make sure the power indicator indicates illuminates solid green. 

Electrical outlet’s fault

If you suspect the fault is from the electrical outlet, move the docking station from its regular position to another outlet. Connect the charging cable securely, and confirm if it indicates a green light. If it does, then your Roomba has started working correctly. You may only need to fix the previous outlet.

Dirty charging contacts

After you’ve gone through the above reasons, your next bet is to check the Roomba’s charging contacts and the dock. There are metal contacts on both the Roomba and the dock that need communication for the Roomba to locate its home base and charge. Sometimes dust on the charging ports makes the unit think it’s already on charge when it isn’t.

You need to wipe the contacts with a dry, soft cloth and take the Roomba to the dock to see if it works. Likewise, if the home base’s bumper has tape, paint or a sticker stuck on it, the Roomba won’t dock. Check the bumper and ensure it’s clean

Infrared interference

Virtual walls, lighthouses, and other home bases can cause interference and restrict your Roomba from getting back to its base. Ensure that every form of potential interference is at least 2.4 meters away from the home base.

Furniture and obstructions in the room

Some homes are quite busy with a lot of stuff everywhere. Check for clutters or furniture that could be hindering the Roomba’s path and restricting it from docking. If the Roomba is experiencing obstructions, clear the way and surrounding to about 2.4 meters around the home base.

Bad battery

The other reason why your Roombas is dying before it docks is a bad battery. Sometimes the battery may need more than just a recharge, and you have to buy a new battery to get the Roomba back in shape.

Why your Roomba is not finding a home base?

Aside from debris on the charging contacts, the distance may also cause the Roomba to have difficulties finding the home base, especially when tasked with cleaning multiple rooms. In the first place, you should ensure the unit can locate the Roomba before it begins its mission.

Place the unit about 2 meters from the base, press dock, and see if it works. If your device is compatible with virtual wall lighthouses or virtual walls, you may need to remedy this situation using either of them to guide the Roomba home or set it to clean smaller spaces. 

Another important thing to note is you Roomba only finds the home base after a cleaning cycle if it either starts at the home base or can see the home base at some point during the cleaning session. 

If you’ve moved your Roomba around during its mission, finding the home base even when you press dock can become difficult for the unit. Placing it 1.8 meters to face the home base can fix this.

How to send your Roomba to dock?

The easiest way to manually dock your Roomba is either by picking it up and taking it to the home base by yourself or by pressing the Home or Dock button on the Roomba unit, and it returns to base.

For the previous method, slide the unit to the home base and ensure charging contacts of both the Roomba unit and the home base are touching. 


The faults a Roomba develops are quite simple with easy solutions that may not require you to return it to the manufacturer or have a technician’s skill. You just have to know what to do, and with some troubleshooting, you can avoid the frustration when it becomes faulty. By now, you should be able to get your Roomba to dock the right way.