There are lots of robot vacuums out there but if you want to set up cleaning schedules without having to remember to empty the bin each time, or if you hate poking around removing dust and dirt by hand, you should consider one with a self-emptying bin.
The Yeedi Vac Station does just that, and also comes with a few other neat tricks. But is it worth investing in a robot vacuum at this price? I’ve spent some time with the Vac Station to see how it performs day-to-day.
Design & build
Large docking station
Sleek, white design for the robot itself
Robot cannot charge with water filter attached
As robot vacuums go, this is a decent looking one. Both the station and the robot come in a matt-white finish with black trim and accents. It feels premium – a good thing considering that it is one of the pricier smart household items out there.
The robot itself is 350mm wide and 77mm high, meaning it’s shorter than average. This means that it can fit underneath sofas and beds to clean areas that you might not otherwise be able to reach with a standard vacuum cleaner. It can’t quite get some awkward corners, but the build is easy enough for slipping in and out of tight spaces.
The same can’t be said for the docking station, which is a bit of a monster, measuring 300 x 420 x 430 mm. It’s also heavy, which isn’t particularly useful if you’re transporting the robot between floors.
The station is where the robot charges and self-empties. Inside the station, you attach a bag, and then when the robot goes to charge, it empties its smaller 450ml capacity dustbin into the larger 2.5L dust bag provided in the station. Yeedi claims that this should last up to 30 days, which I found largely accurate.
There is still a little manual labour involved as you’ll eventually need to empty the dust bag. However, it certainly saves you on trips to the bin.
Yeedi recommends that you place the docking station in an open space where possible – again something not super practical considering its bulky size. Many people like to dock their robot vacuum cleaners behind a sofa, which is just not possible with this appliance.
On the top of the robot, there’s a motion-sensing camera, as well as a power button. The lower lid flips up, which reveals the smaller dustbin on the robot, a little brush for cleaning parts of the bot, and another power switch. This is the one you’ll need to use to control the main power of the Vac Station.
There’s also a Wi-Fi indicator light, which will tell you if you’re having any connectivity issues.
On the bottom of the Yeedi Vac Station, you’ll find two retractable wheels and the main wheel at the front. There’s a motorised floor brush for sucking up dirt, and a three-pronged side brush when can flip out any hard-to-get dust or crumbs from tight corners.
To get the best from it, you’ll need to maintain all the parts of your vacuum regularly. The motorised brush got clogged up with hair and dust quite a lot. But if it gets too tangled to function, the robot will stop and tell you itself.
The Vac Station can also be used to mop your floors. As with many other robot vacuums, this is really for a light mopping session – mopping by hand or by investing in a dedicated mopping bot, which Yeedi sells, is definitely more effective.
The mopping function is activated by clipping on the water tank, which can hold up to 240ml. Then, a microfibre wash pad can be clipped on underneath. The bot will automatically recognise when it is in mopping mode.
There’s one slight flaw with automatic mopping. If it has to pass over a carpeted area to return to the charger after a mopping session, you’ll end up with some musty, damp floors.
In addition, if the water tank is clipped onto the robot – even if it’s empty – the tank makes the robot too bottom-heavy, meaning that it can’t charge or empty properly as it won’t sit on the station at the correct angle.
Features & performance
App can only store one map
Occasional navigation issues
In order to make use of the Yeedi Vac Station, you’ll need the Yeedi app, which is available on both iOS and Android.
Setting up this robot vacuum is a breeze. Once you’ve assembled all of your parts, just connect it to the Wi-Fi and link it to your account. On the first several uses, the robot will map out your floor plan so it can work most efficiently.
The map can identify different rooms, which are then colour coded in the app. You can even add icons to these, such as a bathtub for the bathroom. The robot can recognise large objects such as tables and sofas and will leave them alone.
Unfortunately, it can only store one map at a time. If you move the robot vacuum from one floor to another, you will need to create a brand-new map on your return.
You can choose for the robot to either vacuum all areas on the map, specific rooms in your house, or custom areas, which can be specifically identified on the map. You can also set the vacuum up with regular cleaning schedules, or even have it on continuous cleaning, which means it will start cleaning as soon as it is fully charged.
There are three levels of suction for the Yeedi Vac Station: standard (600 Pa), max (1,500 Pa) and max+ (3,000 Pa), with an additional boost mode for when it is used on carpets. Suction is rather good, even when not used on the highest mode. It didn’t quite get every single nook and cranny, but it certainly made my cleaning job a whole lot easier.
The robot performs better on hard floors than on carpet – some areas of dirt on these floors are just too embedded for the robot to get to.
The fall detection worked like a charm on my stairs, it didn’t show any sign of jumping. And although the bot can recognise rugs, it only works on heavier items. I tested it with my bathmats and found them both scrunched up in the corners of the room from when the vacuum had obviously backed them into a corner, rather than simply going over them.
The robot can be a little noisy when on the full max+ power, but it isn’t quite the same level as what you’d find on a handheld vacuum. Plus, you set the robot to a do not disturb mode during certain hours to avoid it accidentally turning on and running a scary, unexpected clean while you’re sleeping. This also turns off the lights on the station.
You’ll also have to make sure that you start your vacuum from the dock station, as otherwise it can have trouble returning to charge. Occasionally, it had navigation issues – I set it to vacuum my kitchen, and it didn’t always cover all of the floor space, for example. This may be because it uses Visual SLAM navigation rather than the more accurate LIDAR navigation.
Yeedi claims that the Vac Station can last a total of 200 minutes on the lowest setting. In real-world use, it managed to clean the entire top floor of my flat (made up of a bathroom, bedroom, hallway, and kitchen) and still had around a third of a charge left. It takes six hours to charge it from flat to full.
The Yeedi Vac Station retails for $499.99/€499.99, which works out around £377. You can currently buy it from Yeedi, Amazon and Walmart. Right now, many of these retailers are offering big discounts on the model for the Holiday season.
Unfortunately, it’s currently not available in UK stores, but you can buy it from the European Yeedi website. It’s currently on sale for €369, which works out at about £312 – but mind the shipping costs though.
The Vac Station comes with several dust bags, but you can buy more from Yeedi – a pack of three costs $16.99.
This is a pretty good price for a self-emptying robot vacuum. The Ecovacs N8+, a robot with similar features, has an RRP of £599.99, although it is already coming down in price.
You can also check out our chart of the best robot vacuum cleaners overall.
There’s a lot of hassle taken out of cleaning with the Yeedi Vacuum Station. This self-emptying robot vacuum saves you from trips to the bin, and both the suction and battery life are very good.
That said, the occasional navigational issues can be a faff, the mopping mode isn’t the strongest and the ability to only store one map will be annoying to people who live in a property with multiple stories.
If you can look past these issues, then the Yeedi Vac Station is a decent little self-emptying bot that will keep your house clean with minimal effort.
Yeedi Vac Station: Specs
Up to 3000 pa suction power
2.5 L dust bag
240ml water tank for mopping
3 suction modes with auto-boost suction
Visual SLAM navigation
Wi-Fi with Smart Assistant support
Up to 200 minutes runtime
6 hours charging time
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