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How (and When) to Reboot or Factory Reset a Roomba

Roombas are great, but they need a little help sometimes.
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Roomba on carpet
Credit: JCDH/Shutterstock

Robot vacuums have evolved into must-have cleaning tools for busy homes, but they’re also tech—and tech sometimes has issues. You may notice your Roomba isn’t connecting to your wifi anymore or is somehow glitching, for instance. In these cases, you’ll need to reboot or even factory reset.

How to reboot a Roomba

Performing a “Robot Reboot” on a Roomba will resolve most minor issues, according to iRobot, the device’s manufacturer. A reboot will not delete information, so your maps, schedules, and general preferences will be safe. 

For most newer models, you can just open the app you use to control the vacuum, hit Product Settings, then Reboot Roomba. You’ll need to confirm you want to run the action one more time before it starts.

If you want to do this manually or don’t have an app, press and hold the Clean button. If you have an i Series, s Series, or Braava Jet m series, you’ll hold it down for about 20 seconds. If you have a j Series, it’ll be nine seconds. The Roomba 800 and 900 series machines will reboot after you hold it for 10 seconds. If you don’t have a wifi-connected Roomba (so, a 500, 600, or 700 series or Roomba e Series) you’ll have to press and hold the Home and Spot buttons for 10 seconds.

You’ll know it’s rebooting because a light will move in a circle around the Clean button. Rebooting is like a basic restart that will turn the machine off and on—likely fixing any minor issues in the process. 

How to factory reset a Roomba

If your issue doesn’t clear up with a reboot, it might be time to call in the nuclear option: a factory reset. If you factory reset, you will lose all your data. No more maps. No more connections to your smart home devices. No more schedules. No more preferences. It won’t even know what time zone it’s in anymore. The vacuum will function like you just got it out of the box. You might want to consider reaching out to iRobot’s customer care team to troubleshoot before you clear out your whole device. 

You can factory reset the machine from the iRobot Home app or on the device itself. If you reset it on the robot, cloud and app data will remain intact. 

To do this from your app, open that up and double-check that your mobile device is connected to the same wifi network as your vacuum. Tap the gear icon for Product Settings, then About [device name] and Remove Device From Account. Some devices may have an option for you to save any Imprint Smart Maps and if yours does, the app will alert you. Press Save maps during factory reset and the map of your home will be put back into the robot when the reset is done. 

To do this on the machine itself, check which kind you have. For s and i Series vacuums, press and hold the Home, Spot Clean, and Clean buttons until the light around the Clean button moves in a circle. A j Series robot will require you to remove the dust bin, press and hold Clean for seven seconds, and wait for a tone to play before you press Clean one more time to confirm. On an e Series, press and hold Home, Spot Clean, and Clean for 20 seconds. With a 900 Series, press and hold the Dock, Spot Clean and Clean buttons until all the LED lights illuminate. The wifi-connected 600 and 800 vacuums will play a beep tone after you hold the Dock, Spot Clean and Clean buttons, so release them after you hear it. Roomba Combos have a designated Reset button to the left of the on/off switch; just hold it for 10 seconds. Finally, on a Braava jet m Series, press and hold Home, Spot Clean, and Clean until the white light swirls around the tank lid.