bots IN BRIEF
SERVO 05.2016 13
ANOTHER CLEAN SWEEP
iRobot has now introduced its Braava jet 240 Mopping Robot, and it’s the company’s cheapest cleaning robot to
date at $199. Compare the Braava jet 240 to the brand’s
other mopping robot: the $299.99 Braava 380t that launched
in 2013. So, this one is more for the masses.
Both mopping robots are designed to clean hardwoods,
tile, and laminate floors, but the Braava jet 240 is designed to
clean small spaces (150-200 square feet) such as a bathroom,
while the 380t is designed for multiple rooms and large
spaces (350-1,000 square feet).
The biggest concern with the jet 240 appears to be
battery life. The jet 240’s running time isn’t listed on either
the specs page or the owner’s manual, yet iRobot points out
it should be fully charged in two hours. When iRobot’s tech
support was asked about it, they simply said that number
“wasn’t calculated.” So, essentially the jet 240 will be able to
clean up to 150 square feet in wet mode on a single charge
or up to 200 square feet on damp or dry mode with a single
On the other hand, the 380t sweeps for up to 210
minutes and mops for up to 150 minutes which is clearly
stated on its specs page. Unfortunately, both models require
you to manually charge the batteries.
iRobot says the jet 240 will do a much better job
cleaning than the 380t as it features a vibrating cleaning head
to increase agitation for tough stains, a water nozzle to spray
the area it’s covering, and premixed detergent in its disposable
pads. The jet 240 also gets the nod in cleaning modes,
featuring three (Wet Mop, Damp Sweep, Dry Sweep)
compared to the 380t’s two (Mop, Sweep). Plus, the jet 240 is
easier to use: Simply add water to a reservoir on top of the
robot, attach a cleaning pad, and press the “CLEAN” button.
The jet 240 will automatically determine its cleaning action
based on the pad chosen.
The jet 240 has three types of disposable pads, which
cost $7.99 for a 10-pack. This might be another problem as it
adds to the long-term cost of owning this Braava. There are
reusable pads for both the jet 240 and 380t that need to be
cleaned after each use, however.
Both the jet 240 and 380t feature iRobot’s Adapt 2.0
navigation technology and won’t fall down stairs.
iRobot seems to be gambling a bit with the reduced
coverage area and battery life of the jet 240. This essentially
requires humans to be more hands-on in the cleaning
process, which is exactly what is not wanted: having to swap
out pads more often and manually charging the batteries.