Roomba – busted!

So this actually happened a couple of weeks ago. Stan came home to find the Roomba snagged on a pile of slippers, one of its wheels actually got mucked up with a bit of Cookie’s poo so he ended up taking it apart to clean the wheel.

And this is where it all happened. According to his recount, he took the cover off, laid it upside down and left the battery where it was. And the battery happily gave a odd musical blurp (not the usual sound you hear when the Roomba goes back to its dock), and promptly died. We’ve been unable to resuscitate the Roomba after that.

Sequence of events so far:

  • 4 Jun – Roomba busted.
  • 4 Jun to 10 Jun – Stan emailed iRobot support on assistance, followed all troubleshooting recommendations and got zero. iRobot support recommended that the battery be sent in for replacement, then realised, “this chap’s in Australia! Tough luck, no warranty.” So iRobot warranty is domestic, and not international.
    Stan contacted Salton (iRobot reseller in Australia), who offered a spare battery for $99 + $8.50 (shipping and handling). I wasn’t totally sure that it was a battery issue yet, so paying that much seemed like a leap of faith.
  • 10 Jun – I bought a replacement battery off eBay for about $45.
  • 18 Jun – Battery arrived, we had a go at fault isolation – no luck, it doesn’t seem to be the battery.
  • 18 Jun – I called Salton and spoke to a friendly chap, who advised to recheck if the contacts were touching the battery properly, otherwise it wouldn’t charge. He also mentioned that repair quotes were available if we shipped our Roomba over to them.
  • 18 Jun – We will be shipping the Roomba + original battery off to Salton for further investigation.

More to come later.


  • 23 Jun – Called to confirm that Salton’s received my Roomba. The lady on the line said that a repair quote would be available “within 1 to 2 weeks, we’ll give you a call.” That’s a pretty long wait but like I have a choice.
  • 2 Jul – Got a missed call from Tarsha, returned call and confirmed I had a busted part which could not be repaired – replacement cost including return shipping was $189. Paid up via credit card over the phone, and the unit will be sent out to me on Monday so I’m supposed to receive it by Wednesday or Thursday latest.
  • 6 Jul – Called Salton and spoke to Tarsha again, confirmed that my Roomba was still “in repair, but we should get it sent out tomorrow”. Requested that she drop me an email when my unit has been dispatched.
  • 8 Jul – Called Salton again and spoke to a chap who confirmed with Tarsha that my Roomba was still “in repair, but we should be able to get it sent out tomorrow or Monday”.
  • 9 Jul – Received email from MoveitNet about my Roomba being scheduled for delivery by 12 Jul.
  • 12 Jul – Got a call on my mobile from the courier, and Stan picks the Roomba up later. It turns looking like a brand new Roomba, sleek and black instead of the original silver and black body. The invoice attached says it’s been replaced with an iBot 577 (I’m assuming that’s a new body altogether). It’s charging now, and all is good.