We’ll look at how to empty a Roomba robot vacuum, the basics for every model category, which can vary.
I’ve tested every Roomba product in different price brackets, from the entry-level 694 to the flagship J7+, and I’ll show the detailed steps for emptying these products.
Emptying a Roomba robot vacuum is something a necessary maintenance step to keep these machines functioning at their peak.
Avoid leaving debris inside the dustbin for extended periods to prevent dust mites from breeding.
Newer Roomba variants have a clean base station, which simplifies the task of pulling out and throwing away a bag.
If you’ve chosen any of the plus alternatives, the process will be less messy than having to dump debris in a trash bin after every run.
How to Empty Roomba 600-Series [614, 675, 694]
First, we’ll look at the entry-level 600-series. It’s iRobot’s most basic robot using the adaptive (or random) navigating pattern.
All three models have a rear-mounted dustbin with a swing-type door with a wide opening.
Here are the steps to empty the Roomba 614, 675, and 694
Please note that the 600-series dustbin isn’t washable since part of the motor is inside.
Also, the paper-element filter inside isn’t washable.
To prevent unnecessary downtime, purchase an extra filter.
1. Pull out the dustbin
To remove the dustbin, push this lever and pull the dustbin out.
2. Open the swing-type door and empty the contents
Position the container over the trash bin and open the swing-type door to empty.
You’ll need to shake the dustbin slightly to dislodge empty debris from it.
Not everything will come off, and a brush is needed to clean everything.
How to Empty Roomba E5
The Roomba E5 is a step up over the 600-series options, and with that, it has a different dustbin design.
Unlike the Roomba 694 or 675 that slides off, the E5 pivots open.
iRobot moved the button from the top towards the back, which I like since it prevents accidental drops from picking up the robot from the back.
So there’s a tweak with how to open.
Steps to emptying the Roomba E5
The Roomba E5 has the same dustbin as the higher-end Roomba I3 and I6, so the steps will be the same for these robots (at least the non-plus versions).
1. Remove the dustbin
Press the release latch behind the dustbin to unlock and remove the dustbin from the robot.
2. Dump the contents into the trash container
After swinging the dustbin out, open the door and dump the contents into a trash bin.
It’s a little trickier on the E5 because of the smaller opening.
There will be more accumulation, but the good news is that the E5 container is washable (don’t forget to remove the filter) since the motor is inside the robot.
How to Empty Roomba 900-Series [960, 980]
The Roomba 960 and 980 may have been discontinued by iRobot, but I still see these variants sold on stores like Amazon.
So I’ll include them in this list.
These models have similar style dustbins that slide out like the 600-series.
The 900-series also has a wide opening, nearly the same width as the older version.
Emptying these robots will be similar to the 600-series.
Steps to emptying the Roomba 960 and 980
1. Remove the dustbin
Press the release latch behind the robot, then slide the dustbin out.
2. Open the door and empty the contents
After taking the dustbin out, shake it in a trash bin to empty.
LIke the 600-series, the Roomba 960 and 980 opening is narrow, so you’ll need to tap on the container or use a slim brush tool to dislodge everything inside.
How to Empty the Roomba I-Series [I3, I4, I6, I7]
Four I-series variants are available – the I3, I4, I6, and I7.
But please note that all these variants have the same dustbin design, and the steps will be similar.
These steps below will be for the non-plus options or without the clean base station.
Steps to emptying the Roomba I3, I4, I6, and I7 [no clean base station]
1. Remove the dustbin
The I-Series has the same dustbin as the E5. Push the release lever behind it to release the lock.
Remove the dustbin, then proceed to the next step.
2. Dump the contents into a trash container
Open the dustbin door and empty the contents.
Consumers will need a brush to dislodge debris inside since the opening is small and narrow.
Steps to empty the Roomba I3+, I4+, I6+, and I7+ [with clean base station]
The steps will be different with the I-series plus. After every run, these variants have a clean base station that empties the robot’s dustbin for you.
But continue to check the dustbin since the self-emptying system won’t clean everything inside.
Steps to emptying the Roomba I3+, I4+, I6+, and I7+ [no clean base station]
1. Check if the bag is full
Regularly check if the bag inside the clean base station is full.
The iRobot app has a feature that will notify consumers if the bag is clogged, but don’t heavily rely on this.
A visual check is needed to see the status of the bag.
2. Throw the bag [if full]
Once you’ve determined if the bag is full, dispose of it and replace it with a fresh one.
One advantage of the plus series is it’s less messy to empty, and the bag protects users from allergen exposure.
How to Empty
Next, we’ll look at emptying the Roomba S9 and S9+.
This variant is unique from all Roomba products with its shape and dustbin placement.
Whereas other Roombas have round frames with rear-mounted dustbins, the S9 has a D-shape frame and a top-mounted container.
Steps to Emptying the
Roomba S9 [no clean base station]
1. Open the top door and remove the dustbin
One variance with the S9 is its top dustbin placement, which is unique since most iRobot products have a rear-mounted dustbin.
Open the top door, and lift the handle to pull out the dustbin.
2. Empty the S9 dustbin
Once the dustbin is out, open the scissor-type doors to dispose of the contents.
The S9’s massive opening is the easiest to empty among Roomba products.
Steps to Emptying the
Roomba S9+ [with clean base station]
The steps with the S9+ are similar to the Roomba I-series, which I’ll highlight below.
- Check if the bag is empty: Open the clean base station to check if the bag is full or not.
- Throw the bag: Once you’ve determined the bag is full, dispose of it and replace it with a new one.
How to Empty the Roomba J7 and J7+
Lastly, we’ll look at the steps to emptying the flagship J7+. There are two J7 options – the non-plus and the plus version.
The steps for the non-plus J7 are similar to the I-series since these models use the same dustbin.
The photo above shows that the Roomba J7 and I3 have similar dustbin designs.
I’ll summarize the steps below.
- Press the release latch to remove the dustbin: The J7+ dustbin is similar to the I-series with the rear latch. Push this lever to unlock to remove the container.
- Open the door, then empty: After removing the dustbin, place it over the trash bin to empty.
Despite the design changes, the steps with the clean base station are also similar to the I-series.
These variants have to use the same bag that slides in from the top.
- Open the clean base station and check if the bag is full.
- If the bag is full, pull it out, then dispose of it.
- Place a new bag.
There you go, simple steps for every model range in the iRobot product line.
Remember to clean the dustbin to prevent debris from accumulating to unmanageable levels.