Keeping Clean, On time: Roomba Schedule Troubleshooting

Everything works perfectly until it doesn’t. This is the mantra of technology. The wonders of convenience we enjoy every day are life-changing until they don’t work. Such is the case with the incredible Roomba vacuums. Roomba schedule troubleshooting can make the difference between a paperweight and effective cleaner.

The iRobot line of Roomba vacuums features several models in the 500, 600, 700, 800, and 900 series that you can program to run at up to 7 specific times a week. The cleaning schedule program feature of these robot vacuums makes maintaining a clean house a breeze. When the schedule doesn’t work, it is kind of like coming home to find out your cat went through the garbage. Fortunately, we have a few fixes that will help get your Roomba back on schedule.

Roomba Schedule Troubleshooting: Most Common Causes

As with anything mechanical, you can encounter almost an infinite number of problems. For our guide, we are leaving out complex mechanical and software issues that are not readily repairable at home. If you try the suggestions here and you are still experiencing problems, contact iRobot for advanced repair solutions.

1.      Battery Power

According to iRobot’s troubleshooting and FAQ page, the Roomba clock resets when the battery is removed or reaches a low level of charge. A reset clock due to a removed or discharged battery will cause the Roomba to run on an incorrect schedule.

Every time the battery drains low enough the clock resets. The Roomba automatically charges at the home base, so you may not even know the clock is resetting. The best way to avoid high battery drain is to make sure you are getting a full charge between cleanings and not to let your battery completely drain during the Roomba runs.

2.      Charging Station Location

One way you can make sure that your battery stays healthy and doesn’t kill the clock is to choose the optimal spot for your Home Base. iRobot recommends that you always use the Home Base to charge and maintain the Roomba.

Where you place the base will impact the battery and the cleaning efficiency. To ensure you are getting the best of both, put the Home Base in a central location of the area you want to have cleaned. While convenience may dictate storing in an out of the ay corner, you will find that the battery will drain completely, causing schedule issues, or the room will not have the best clean.

3.      Clock Not Correctly Set

Admittedly, this common cause should be number one. If your Roomba’s clock doesn’t have the current time programmed, you will never experience a proper cleaning schedule. After fully charging your unit, check and set your robot’s clock to your desired time and date.

An incorrectly programmed schedule will also cause this problem. If the battery was ever removed or drained and not charged for an extended period, you would need to reprogram the schedule. Set the clock first to prevent any mixups in the scheduled operating times.


Righting Your Roomba Schedule

Setting the Clock and Schedule

On all the clock and schedule enabled Roomba models, you can program the clock and schedule using the same process, with a little variation. The actual layout and appearance of the buttons in the procedure may differ, but the process is the same.

500 and 600 Series Roombas

  1. Press and Hold the Clock button
  2. Utilize the Minute, Day, and Hour buttons to change the Roomba to the exact desired time.
  3. Release Clock

Follow the same process for programming the schedule, except hold Schedule, not Clock.

700 & 800 Series

  1. Press the Clock or Schedule button
  2. Input correct date and time using the Day, Hour, and Minute buttons
  3. Press OK. The Roomba will give you a nice little beep to confirm that you have set the clock or the schedule.

Again, these are two separate processes. Use Clock to program the time and Schedule to program the schedule.

Program WIFI Enabled models using iRobot Home App

Certain Roombas in the 600, 800, and 900 series come with WIFI connectivity. Using a smart device, you can set the time and schedule from the iRobot Home app. With the robot connected to your home wireless network, and synced with the app, all you must do is select Schedule from the home screen of your vacuum and input your desired run times on the schedule screen.

You can also check other settings, including the programmed time, from the app to verify that everything is correct according to your specifications.


How to reset your Roomba

In some cases, you may still experience problems with your Roomba running on schedule, after performing the above fixes. In the case that none of the above solutions work, you can try to do a reset of your Roomba vacuum. Performing a rest will wipe everything back to the way the bot was when it arrived in your home from the factory or store.

WIFI enabled Models

From the iRobot Home app, you can perform a factory reset by following this process

  1. Touch More
  2. Settings
  3. Factory Reset
  4. Select the model of the connected robot you want

Non-WIFI Models

600 and 800 Series

Simply press and hold the Clean, Dock, and Spot Clean buttons simultaneously. When the Robot beeps, release the buttons. The vacuum will reset.

900 Series

Do the same as the 600 and 800. The exception is that the reset confirmation is when all the robot’s LED lights turn on. Release the buttons, and the bot will reset.

500 & 600 Series

Press and hold the buttons above and below the Clean button for 10-seconds. Release after 10-seconds to perform the reset.

700 Series and Older 800 and 900 Series

On this set of models, all you need is to press and hold the Clean button for 10-seconds and release to initiate the reset process.

Click here for a more detailed Roomba reset article, complete with videos.


Go Forth and Schedule

Roomba troubleshooting isn’t overly complicated. We love the Roombas for their simplicity. If you try everything above and still don’t get a fix, contact iRobot to get things sorted out or learn more advanced repair options.

About the Author Jason