Speaker 1: Vacuum testing has more in common with Astro photography than you might think it involves a little vacuum. Yeah, but we also use long exposure cameras and all kinds of cool techniques. We'll talk through it. All right. Now this is how we test vacuums.
Speaker 1: We test all sizes and shapes of vacuums here, full size models, lightweight cords alternatives, and the most high tech, the bunch robot vacuums. Our testing helps us recommend the best models for your home, but the testing itself can be pretty fun. So here's a look behind the scenes at our setup and process. [00:00:30] I'll start by talking about the main test we use on the old vacuums, a straight line test. Yes, it's mostly just vacuuming, but we do a lot of calculations to make sure it's a fair test for all the models that come through our lab. Then the fun stuff. I'll talk about the extra pieces we put robo vacuums through, including a navigation test with low exposure photography and the most disgusting tests of all poop avoidance complete with its terrible rubbery things. The main test for all of the vacuums is called a straight line test.
Speaker 1: And our process is [00:01:00] closely aligned with the standard established by an organization called I E C. The goal of a straight line test is to measure what percentage of dirt the vacuum is capable of picking up. We use three different types of dirt. We call it soil and testing, black rice, sand and pet hair. And we run the test on three different types of flooring, hardwood, high pile carpet, and low pile carpet. Our pet hair test is the simplest. We use two grams of humanely collected pet hair spread across each test bed and take before and after photos for visual comparison, we [00:01:30] call this an anecdotal test. We're really just comparing how many clumps each vacuum can pick up for black rice and sand. We start by weighing the empty Dustin. Then we adjust the width of this rig re made based on the units.
Speaker 1: No size. The goal is to equalize the soil density, which is the amount of mass per surface area floor for all of the different nozzle widths. The length of our test bed stays the same. We change the width. So that is one inch less than the vacuums nozzle length. That is so that the vacuum has plenty of room to go over the entire width of the soil. One pass, think of it like giving [00:02:00] it a half inch margin of error on each side. Then we weigh out a certain amount of soil based on an equation using width as the only variable for each vacuum. We want a soil density of 125 grams per meter, square of soil on carpet, a number established by the IEC dash removal test. We use 40% of that for hardwood. And then we vacuum one passing, a straight line, covering our test area, and then we weigh the Dustin.
Speaker 1: Again. We then calculate the percentage of the initial soil that has been picked up by the vacuum to make sure the Dustin [00:02:30] enhance the vacuum is not keeping soil inside. We clean it and weigh it after each run, making sure that this amount equals our initial Dustin weight, rain and repeat three times per floor type for rice and sand, but only once per floor type per pet hair. Again, it's more an model, but all of that adds up between all the cleaning and measuring, just testing. One unit equals a total of 21 months in a major pain in the. And we do all of that for every single vacuum we test. And that's pretty much it for ordinary vacuums, but we're just getting started with the robot models. [00:03:00] Our second test for robot vacuums is a navigation test. This test is important because you need to know which model is going to cover every spot while it works.
Speaker 1: And which is going to clean your living room. The quickest different models use wildly different navigation techniques. And it's one of the ways that higher end models, separate themselves, cheaper models, navigate with random bumping. They run in a straight line until they bump into something and they change direction. They basically just keep going until the battery dies higher end vacuums use lasers that shoot out of a turt to map out their surroundings. Then [00:03:30] the navigation software uses its info to tell the back where to go and where not to go. You can usually see the maps. This models create in corresponding apps, some models, images of the ceiling as well, but in general, the higher end models work with an actual plan and it results in much more efficient work. We can see all of that in action in this room that we built to mimic a real life home layout.
Speaker 1: From the point of view of a Rob vacuum, it looks strange to you, but to a vacuum. These are table legs, chairs, and order furniture to navigate around the size and dimensions of the room. [00:04:00] Also reflect what other national and worldwide test bodies use for robot vacuum navigation testing. Our goal is to use long exposure shooting in order to assess and compare the navigation efficiency of each unit. We Mount an L E D bar on top of the robot vacuum in the same location and the same size as the cleaning. No on the bottom and turn off all of the lights in the lab. We have a high resolution camp mirror attached to the ceiling that captures all movements of the robo vacuum has navigate across the room, avoiding obstacles, stopping, turning, and doing its best to reach into every spot. What we [00:04:30] get is an image like this one, this is an example of a low end back using bump navigation on it.
Speaker 1: Not only you can see how much of the room the robo vacuum has covered, but also we are able to as assess its navigation pattern and the duration of its run, all of which are taken into account when comparing units to one another, notice that the back has pretty good coverage, but there's no discernible pattern to how it works. Compare that to this image of a higher end back at work here, you can clearly see a systematic pattern. Coverage is the most important thing we assess you want your back to get into every [00:05:00] spot. The medic navigation makes a big difference. The first pack completed the testing and average of 74 minutes. The second one covered the same area in about only 15. That's a lot I know, but we're not quite done yet in the lab. We constantly update and improve our testing methodologies in order to keep up with the new technological advancements of every category we test.
Speaker 1: For example, a couple of new R vacuums are designed to detect and avoid pet waste. You might have seen or experienced a horrible smearing that can happen without this tech. [00:05:30] So it's definitely a welcome addition. That's why we came up with this brand new poop test to see how this feature performs in a more confined test bin. We placed three big pet stools at strategic locations. Each are sending different sizes, textures and colors. We place one in a corner, one along the wall, and one in the middle of the room to test different angles of approach. Can the vacuum navigate all 360 degrees around the one in the middle of the room? What about 180 degrees on the wall or 90 in the
Speaker 2: Corner? Our goal is to assess how efficiently these Rob vacuums [00:06:00] can detect and avoid pathways. Given those circumstances, ideally, the robot vacuum must cover all of the test pen, except for the stool locations. We assess their performance using another long exposure navigation image like this. Additionally, we capture a time lapse of the unit working to obtain a visual presentation of each unit's navigation performance in the form of a gift. And there we go. That's the end of our testing, complete with lots of math and lasers. We turn all of the data we obtain in the lab into performance charts like this one. So we can see the results side by side and [00:06:30] understand which facts are the best at which tests. And we play with plastic booths. So you don't have to deal with the real stuff. All hope you make an informed purchase decision when it's time to drop the big box on a new piece of tech. Thanks for watching coming below. If you have any questions and let us know what other tests you'd like to see as we're always developing our testing methodologies and feel free to share any horror stories that you may have involving robo vacuums and poop, smearing check the other links. If you wanna find out more about all of the vacuums that we tested and don't forget to like, can subscribe, see you next time.