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Yeedi Vac 2 Pro review: Good mopping action but not a great navigator

Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
460
inc VAT

Great mopping and functional vacuum cleaning, but the Yeedi Vac 2 Pro’s score sheet is marred by a lack of navigation skill

Pros 
A superior mop for the price
Dodges carpets and rugs during wet work
Avoids dropped cables and clothes
Cons 
Slow
Poor navigation
Fiddly map management
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At first glance, the Yeedi Vac 2 Pro has a list of specifications that doesn’t look much different to the enormous number of other robot vacuum cleaner and mops available through Amazon. However, it does have a bit of a trick up its sleeve.

Most robot vacuum cleaners with mopping functions use some variation of a clip-on attachment that lets them drag a damp cloth behind them. This enables them to pick up loose dirt with their vacuum element, then give the floor a cursory wipe to remove sticky, dried-on dirt – and while this basic mopping action is probably still better than not mopping at all, it tends to be a very light touch.

Yeedi has tackled this lack of elbow grease with a mopping attachment that oscillates as it mops. Although it’s otherwise similar to the mopping equipment you’ll find elsewhere, it undoubtedly adds an extra element of agitation to the otherwise familiar mix, effectively giving dirt patches a quick rub as it passes, rather than simply applying a single wipe.

Yeedi Vac 2 Pro review: What do you get for the money?

The Yeedi Vac 2 Pro has a fairly standard design for a robot vacuum cleaner. It’s a smart matte-white device, measuring 346 x 342 x 74mm (WDH), and is shaped like a large hockey puck. It doesn’t use LIDAR navigation, so doesn’t need a turret on the top – instead it has front- and top-mounted cameras that help it navigate visually.

It comes with a standard charging station that’s about the same height as the robot. This is placed against a wall and powered from a wall socket, and the robot butts up against it when charging. There’s also a compatible self-emptying station that’s available in Europe and the US, but Yeedi informed me that it won’t be available in the UK.

Inside, the vacuum suction is rated at 3,000Pa, which isn’t the most powerful suction around, but is reasonable for the price, with rivals such as the Airrobo T10+ and the Proscenic M8 Pro offering similar suction at a similar price.

The 420ml collection bin sits in the middle of the robot and is accessed by lifting a lid on the top. A small handle can be flipped up and the collection bin is then lifted out like a bucket, emptied by opening its long side. It’s simple and easy to perform and the sponge filter can be cleaned by rinsing in running water, as long as it’s left to dry naturally for 24 hours.

To convert the robot into a mop you need to remove a blanking section on the rear and replace it with the mop unit. This combines both the 240ml reservoir and the base-mounted mopping cloth. The device drips clean water onto the cloth, which is then dragged over the floor, oscillating as it goes.

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Yeedi Vac 2 Pro review: What is it like to use?

I found setting up the Yeedi Vac 2 Pro to be relatively straightforward, though I stumbled slightly while trying to connect it to my Wi-Fi network. A QR code is generated in the app on your smartphone, which you need to hold above the robot for scanning through the top-mounted camera. That sounds simple enough, but I found it a bit awkward and ended up using the fall-back solution of simply typing in the Wi-Fi password instead.

The app is clear, easy to navigate and simple to operate. The first time you send the robot out it encourages you to reduce the suction while it explores the house and makes a map.

This is arguably where the robot starts to fall behind its similarly-priced rivals. Since it doesn’t have LIDAR to scan its surroundings, the Vac 2 Pro must build up its map by literally exploring every corner of the space available to it. This means you have to ensure the floor is clear and that the robot can get access to the entire floorplan.

This makes the process fairly slow: it took 1hr 18mins to map out 60m2 of my ground floor, which is much slower than average. It doesn’t speed up once the map is created and the robot knows where it’s going, with the same 60m2 space taking an average of 1hr 24mins to clean on subsequent trips. By contrast, the LIDAR-equipped Airrobo T10+ and Proscenic M8 Pro can cover the same area in less than an hour.

Once a map was created, I found the version it displayed in the app to be vague and lacking detail. Even quite significant room elements – such as the breakfast bar in my kitchen – are missing from the map, while two rooms appear to have access between them where there’s actually a solid wall.

A vague map isn’t a catastrophe but it takes the shine off the user experience when it comes to choosing where to clean. To perform a spot clean, for example, you move and resize a rectangle on the map, and the robot moves to the area, circles around the edge, then covers the area in the middle by traversing the area in parallel lines.

If the map doesn’t have enough detail, however, it makes it harder to specifically pinpoint where you want the robot to clean. With my breakfast bar not showing up, for example, I had to guess where in the kitchen I wanted the device to clean, and estimate where I’d need to set it to avoid entanglement with stool legs.

With most houses having multiple storeys, I expect a robot vacuum cleaner to manage multiple floors. The Vac 2 Pro can do this in conjunction with its app, but it’s a clunky business that requires moving both the robot and the charging station to the new location each time you want to clean. I tried moving just the cleaner, but it won’t finalise map creation without docking. Even once the map is stored, moving just the robot can initiate a clean, but it will endlessly hunt for the missing docking station when it’s finished.

If you don’t mind working around this and moving the base station with every clean, then this is merely annoying, and certainly much preferable to not being able to move the robot between floors at all. However, I suspect most users will want to tuck the cable away and make everything as neat as possible, which is easier if you don’t have to keep moving things around.

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Yeedi Vac 2 Pro review: Is it good at finding its way around?

I mentioned in the section above that the Yeedi Vac 2 Pro doesn’t maintain a particularly detailed map. I suspect that’s the main reason why it’s a bit slower than vacuums with LIDAR, which seem better at sensing their surroundings, finding routes around obstacles and generally getting from one place to another.

As with most robots that don’t have LIDAR, there’s a real sense that this robot bumbles about bumping into things, rather than intelligently picking a course based on what it understands about the walls and furniture around it.

One thing the robot is good at, however, is detecting the type of surface it’s on. This is great when mopping, because it can detect and steer clear of carpet, rugs and mats, which saves them from getting wet.

Unfortunately, it isn’t particularly smart at working out how to get around a large obstacle such as a rug if the path to the other side isn’t obvious. When I asked it to mop a room that would require it to take a fairly torturous route around a rug, it instead repeatedly butted up to it, trying to find a way through, when it really needed to consider its map and work out the long way round.

Again, this would be disappointing rather than a deal breaker if the robot could work out where it is when it’s picked up and moved around within the area covered by its map. Unfortunately, without LIDAR to accurately observe its surroundings, you can’t do that either. It shouldn’t really be down to the end user to have to work out how to get a device like this to clean a room that’s on the wrong side of an obstacle the robot ought to be able to navigate, but the only way I can really think of getting around this would be to move the charging station and create another map, which is far from ideal.

One of the Yeedi’s best tricks is that it can detect and navigate around certain dropped household objects. I tested it with a trio of tricky obstacles: a charging cable for a phone, a discarded sock and a convincing joke dog poo. The Yeedi successfully avoided the sock entirely, and mostly managed with the cable, which was disturbed by the edge sweeper brush and shuffled around a bit, but never came close to the vacuum inlet.

The pet poo wasn’t spotted at all, however. It simply drove into it and would have smeared a real doggy doo across the floor. It’s not as good at detecting objects as the iRobot Roomba j7, which is the king of this sort of thing, but for two thirds of the price it avoided two thirds of the objects, so you can’t really complain.

Yeedi Vac 2 Pro review: How well does it clean?

The Yeedi Vac 2 Pro wasn’t phased by our robot vacuuming tests, which involve hoovering up measured quantities of rice and flour on both short pile carpet and hard floor.

As is the case with most robot vacuums, it performed slightly better on hard floor than on carpet. In the rice test, it picked up 84% of spillage, with the rest getting scattered out of the robot’s path by the edge sweeping brush.

There was less scatter on the flour test, but the Vac 2 Pro did drive through some of the flour before it could vacuum it up, collecting flour on the tyres and generally spreading out the mess. A significant trace of flour was also left behind, but it did still manage to collect 82% of the spill in its collection bin.

On carpet, it struggled more when trying to pick up the rice, despite there being less scatter, picking up only 78% of the spill. Flour on carpet was its greatest weakness, collecting a total of 68% of the flour we dropped.

Compared to similarly priced rivals, the Yeedi largely follows expectations, as you can see from the chart below. However, we have seen robots perform much better recently, with the Eufy Robovac G20 managing to collect an average of 90% of spills.

When it comes to mopping, I was impressed, particularly because my expectations are generally low for sub-£500 mops. The vibration of the Yeedi Vac 2 Pro’s mop pad gives the process a rubbing action that you don’t get from the mops of standard dual-function robot vacuum cleaners, which simply drag their cleaning cloths behind. This made the Vac 2 Pro better at working on sticky stains than its basic mopping rivals.

I also liked that it would sensibly detect and avoid carpet and rugs while the mop was attached, despite creating a few navigation problems. This is by no means a universal feature in vacuum mop combos, and is very welcome here, taking the hassle out of trying to manually block the robot from hitting carpet during a mopping session.

Having said all this, it’s worth noting that it still isn’t quite as good at mopping as the Ecovacs Deebot X1 Omni. With its twin rotating pads, it’s the best we’ve mop we’ve seen so far, with the added benefit of being able to clean itself. It’s worth noting, however, that you have to pay for the luxury: it costs three times the price of the Yeedi Vac 2 Pro.

Yeedi Vac 2 Pro review: Should I buy it?

If you’re looking for a robot vacuum that can also mop, without spending a great deal of money, then the Yeedi Vac 2 Pro is a serious contender. It does a better job of mopping than most similarly priced rivals, and performed as expected in our vacuuming tests, too.

Where the robot loses out is in navigation. Without LIDAR, it isn’t very good at finding its way around complex spaces, and while the app is mostly easy to use, the map it creates is vague. Multifloor cleaning requires you to move the charging station as well as the vacuum, and selecting areas to clean in the app isn’t as slick as we would have liked, either.

If you’re looking for the best robot vacuum and mop that money can buy, I’d steer you to the Ecovacs Deebot X1 Omni instead, with its dual rotary mops that apply vastly more cleaning action to your floor. It comes with an enormous charging station that also empties the vacuum collection bin, keeps it topped up with water, and washes the mop – the only caveat is that you have to pay quite a bit more.

If you’re less fussed about the quality of the mopping, you’ll have a better time with a LIDAR-equipped robot that’s better at finding its way around. The Airrobo T10+ is a strong alternative, which also comes with a self-emptying charging station, although it doesn’t dodge socks and charging cables.

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