Outstanding cleaning for willing micromanagers

Competition has been fierce on the robot vacuum market, with iRobot’s Roomba vacuums initially dominating — until younger brands like Roborock, Dreametech and Ecovacs started making more capable and cheaper alternatives.


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They’ve recently upped their game with innovative and fully autonomous devices that can mop and vacuum at the same time, such as the notorious Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra. Ecovacs also released a competing product last year, the Deebot X1 Omni, but is continuing to innovate with the new Deebot T20 Omni, a fully autonomous robot vacuum that can autonomously empty its dustbin and wash its mop pads. The manufacturer has added new features to distinguish it from the competition, such as a unique feature that allows it to mop using 131º hot water for an impressive cleaning efficiency. It has also added mop lifting functionality, bringing it on par with the competition.

ECOVACS DEEBOT T20 OMNI

$1000 $1100 Save $100

The Ecovacs Deebot T20 Omni is an innovative autonomous robot vacuum and mop combo. It’s the first one to clean floors using hot water for perfect cleaning results. Most of its cleaning settings can be customized, and its autonomous design allows you to set it and forget it.

Dimensions
14.25 x 14.25 x 4 inches

Battery Life
260 minutes

Brand
Ecovacs

Price
$1,100

Surface Recommendation
All

Connectivity
WiFi

Integrations
Alexa, Google Assistant

Suction
6,000Pa

Mopping Area Based on Water Tank Capacity(m²)
4,300 sq ft

Dust Bag Capacity(L)
3

Cleaning Modes
Mopping and vacuuming

Pros

  • Cleaning results
  • Hot water mopping
  • Low maintenance
Cons

  • Battery life
  • Water consumption
  • Navigation
  • Price

Price and availability

The Ecovacs Deebot T20 Omni is available on Amazon and Ecovacs’ online store for $1,100. It’s only available in white, unlike some other models that often come in various colors.

There are often discounts, so keep an eye out for deals and promotions before buying a unit.

Design, hardware, what’s in the box

The Ecovacs T20 Omni’s design is relatively bulky, measuring 14.25 x 14.25 x 4 inches, mostly because of its large LiDAR dome on the top. Despite its size, though, it’s still slim enough to be able to sweep under most furniture.

Ecovacs Deebot T20 Omni without its top cover

Besides the top-mounted sensor, housed in a silver-painted dome, there’s a single multifunction button on the top, which nicely fits together with the silver panel that covers the dust bin, the master switch, a reset button, and some screws. Sadly, the panel itself detaches completely from the robot, which means you have to find a place for it when accessing the dustbin, the power switch, or reset button.

On the bottom, there are two large detachable mop pads, together with a single rubber brush-roller, as well as two side brushes, in addition to the usual sensors and wheels. The front side looks very modern, as it houses the TrueDetect infrared sensor, which helps the robot recognize obstacles and avoid them.

Overall, the mix of white and silver makes the Deebot T20 Omni look premium, despite the average quality of the plastics and some parts feeling slightly loose. It’s disappointing the build quality isn’t better for an appliance that costs over a grand and doesn’t necessarily make the product feel very durable.

Ecovacs Deebot T20 Omni base station

When it comes to the dock, Ecovacs is known for making unreasonably oversized ones, and the Deebot T20 Omni is no exception, measuring a whopping 17.64 x 16.93 x 22.76 inches. Its impressive dimensions allow it to house two 4L water tanks, which Ecovacs says is enough to clean up to 4,300 square feet, as well as a 3L dust bag.

It’s the same for the base station’s build quality, as the top flap that covers the tanks doesn’t seem very solid, and appears to be easy to break. The same goes for the water tanks, which could potentially not resist an accidental drop down the stairs.

Finally, when it comes to the box contents, there’s not much to find there, besides the robot and the station and the brushes. Only a spare dust bag and a cleaning brush are provided, but no additional roller-brushes or mop pads come with the robot.

Setup, software, and features

The robot is relatively easy to set up using the Ecovacs app. After pairing the vacuum, it starts exploring its surroundings to generate a map of your house, which you can then edit to customize the rooms, as well as create no-go zones and virtual walls. If your house has several stories, the robot can handle up to three different maps simultaneously.

The Ecovacs app offers a large number of options to control the robot and the cleaning settings, and lets you customize the vacuuming and mopping settings for each room, as well as the mop washing frequency and thoroughness, and whether to lift the mops when encountering carpets, or avoid them altogether. It’s also possible to adjust the hot air drying duration for the mop pads, and whether the robot should recharge itself and continue cleaning after it runs out of battery.

In addition to customizing the cleaning experience, the app offers details about the robot’s status, such as its remaining battery percentage, where it is, and what rooms it has already cleaned.

The Ecovacs app also lets you set up the robot’s built-in voice assistant, Yiko, which can understand some commands to go clean a specific room or return to the docking station, without having to use a third-party system. This is particularly useful if you don’t have smart speakers at home, as you can still vocally interact with the robot without having to buy new hardware. In practice, it’s not as smooth as using Google Assistant or Alexa, though, as it often struggles to hear the “OK Yiko” activation command, and then takes its sweet time to process the request. It’s still nice to have the feature, but most people will probably continue using their usual digital assistant, which the Deebot T20 Omni natively works with.

Sadly, despite offering plenty of features, the app isn’t well designed. First, it’s not very intuitive, and it’s often hard to find a basic setting hidden in the menus, or you sometimes have to slide sideways to reveal more options.

I’ve also found the app to be quite buggy, as I often ran into issues, such as the app not loading the map or sending false error notifications. It’s sad Ecovacs hasn’t better refined its app before releasing the product to the market. With any luck, it’ll be improved through updates, but there’s no guarantee that’ll happen.

Cleaning efficiency and battery life

Ecovacs Deebot T20 Omni bottom

In terms of cleaning, the Deebot T20 Omni offers exemplary performance, both thanks to its 6,000 Pa vacuuming power and its dual side brushes that catch dust and debris more effectively, as well as its hot water cleaning.

The vacuum’s bristleless rubber brush can easily dislodge dust particles from carpets and hard surfaces, while the side ones clean corners and along the walls. A dual brush-roller would have been more effective on thick rugs, but the T20 Omni already does a great job of removing dirt on almost any surface.

The robot offers four cleaning modes, ranging from Silent to Max+. The first two produce around 60 decibels, around the noise level of a normal conversation, which is quiet enough to let you watch TV, work, or even have a conversation. The strongest ones reach about 67db, similar to the noise environment you’d experience in a car driving at 60 mph, which is a bit loud, but that’s to be expected when you select the highest setting.

Ecovacs Deebot T20 Omni TrueDetect sensor

When it comes to mopping, the Ecovacs Deebot T20 Omni offers hands-down the best cleaning performance, especially on tough and hard stains, as it uses 151º water to dampen its mop before starting to scrub the floor. During my test, I spilled coffee and soda on hardwood surfaces and waited six hours for them to dry out before launching a cleaning cycle. To my surprise, the stains were completely gone after the robot scrubbed the floors, without even adding detergent to the clean water tank.

Unfortunately, though, Ecovac has designed the Deebot T20 Omni in such a way that the robot doesn’t have a built-in water tank. Instead, the base station heats up the water and dampens the mop pads, which means they start to dry out quickly, and the water gets colder during the cycle. You have to carefully observe the robot during the first cycle and adjust the dampness settings and mop wash frequency to ensure this doesn’t happen, to maximize the cleaning efficiency.

Sadly, this means increasing the water consumption, which in my tests barely allowed me to mop 550 square feet with a full 4L water tank placed in the station — far from the 4,300 promised by Ecovacs. It’s very surprising, as competing models like the Roborock S8 Pro Ultra and Dreamebot L10s Ultra can both clean much larger surfaces with some clean water left in the tank.

When the robot is done cleaning, it can automatically return to its base to wash and dry its mop pads according to the predefined settings. Unfortunately, this process is a bit noisy, producing a little over 50 decibels, which is audible and slightly annoying, especially when you have guests over.

Ecovacs Deebot T20 Omni water tanks

To navigate around your house and detect obstacles, the Ecovacs Deebot T20 Omni uses a combination of LiDAR and infrared sensors. During my tests, it managed to find its way from room to room and effectively recognize obstacles brilliantly. However, it struggled to detect smaller objects and cables, which often ended up tangled around its main brush roller. This kind of behavior is relatively common with infrared sensors, and RGB cameras do a much better job at recognizing cables.

That being said, I’ve had occasions where the robot was hesitant and stayed at the same places spinning in place for a few seconds, and even cleaning the same area repeatedly. That’s not necessarily an issue, but it’s not clear why the robot did that. Also, unlike apps from competing brands, the Ecovacs app doesn’t show obstacles on a map, even when the robot successfully senses and avoids them. It’s not a big deal, but it’s hard to understand why they didn’t make that extra effort.

Ecovacs Deebot T20 Omni

Regarding battery life, Ecovacs estimates a cleaning time of about 170 minutes in standard mode, with mop vacuuming and mopping modes on. In my testing, the robot kept running out of battery after about an hour in max mode, which is just too short compared to its rivals.

Worse, the option to automatically return to the station to charge itself and resume work isn’t on by default, which meant the robot just returned to its docking station after cleaning for an hour without having finished its job. If you live in a house, 60 minutes of runtime may not be enough, as it doesn’t allow the robot to fully clean more than 505 square feet.

Maintenance and care

Ecovacs Deebot T20 Omni water tanks

Like other fully autonomous robot vacuum and mop combos, the Ecovacs Deebot T20 Omni is supposed to take care of almost everything itself: cleaning the mop pads, drying them, collecting the dust and the soiled water, and letting you know when you need to empty or refill one of the tanks or gets your hand dirty and clean the robot.

While it does all this very well, it uses way more water than most other robots, which means you end up emptying and refilling the tanks almost every day. Similarly, it uses small plastic nubs to scrub the mop pads, which isn’t as efficient as Roborock’s approach of using a dedicated brush to clean the mop, so it’s best to throw it in a washer regularly.

Ecovacs Deebot T20 Omni cradle

The base station itself does get dirty after a while, which is normal and requires your intervention to scrub it once in a while. Thankfully, this process is simple and assisted, as a dedicated mode “ejects” the robot, injects clean water in the cradle that houses the robot, asks you to scrub it, and then drains it out into the dirty water tank.

Cleaning the robot is also easy, as the bristleless brush avoids hair getting wrapped around the brush roller, which means you’ll only need a few minutes to give it a makeover every once in a while.

Competition

Dreame L10s Ultra

The Deebot T20 Omni is a peculiar product, as it’s a sub-flagship robot in Ecovacs’ lineup, while also offering an innovative hot water cleaning feature. However, considering its price, it’s fair to compare it to two similar products: The Roborock S7 Max Ultra ($1,300), and the Dreamebot L10s Ultra ($1,000).

Both offer slightly lower vacuuming power, 5,500 and 5,300 Pa, respectively, while offering similar vacuuming efficiency overall, thanks to their bristleless brushes. The Deebot T20 Omni has two side brushes, which give it a slight advantage to clean corners and along the walls.

Regarding mopping, the Dreamebot L10s Ultra also comes with two detachable mop pads, but doesn’t offer the best cleaning performance. The Roborock S7 Max Ultra, on the other hand, comes with a vibrating mop, which offers great cleaning performance, but lacks the hot water advantage.

Roborock S7 Max Ultra and its dock

If I were to judge the three models by cleaning efficiency, the Ecovacs Deebot T20 Omni would probably be our winner. However, it’s important to consider other areas where its rivals excel, such as their navigation and obstacle recognition, which are superior on both other models. The Dreamebot L10s Ultra is probably the best pick there, thanks to its RGB camera and AI obstacle detection.

Similarly, Dreamebot worked on a much more aesthetically pleasing docking station compared to its competitors, which might make it a better choice if you’d like to place it in your living room. Also, Roborock is, in my opinion, the one manufacturer that has perfected automatic mop washing, making its robots the most autonomous on the market. Finally, both Roborock and Dreame models come with a longer-lasting battery, making them both better options for large houses.

Should you buy it?

The Ecovacs Deebot T20 Omni is one of the top-performing robot vacuum and mop combos on the market. It does an amazing job at removing dust and debris from the floor, while washing them well and getting rid of dried and tough stains. However, it comes with a few drawbacks, such as limited battery life and poor obstacle avoidance. It also requires more human intervention compared to other models we’ve tested, despite having one of the most opulent docking stations we’ve seen.

All in all, it’s a great choice if you don’t need to clean more than 500 square feet and have somewhere to hide the unsightly station. You also shouldn’t mind emptying and refilling large water tanks quite often, as the robot is one of the thirstiest ones we’ve tested.

However, if you live in a large house and have plenty of objects lying around on the floor, you should consider other robot vacuums instead. Similarly, if you value design and want to feature your robot vacuum instead of hiding it, this model probably isn’t the right one for you.

ecovacs-deebot-t20-omni-square

ECOVACS DEEBOT T20 OMNI

$1000 $1100 Save $100

The Ecovacs Deebot T20 Omni is an innovative autonomous robot vacuum and mop combo. It’s the first one to clean floors using hot water for perfect cleaning results. Most of its cleaning settings can be customized, and its autonomous design allows you to set it and forget it.

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