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Roborock S5 Max Review

A Smarter 2-in-1 Robot Vac and Mop

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Roborock S5 Max

The Roborock S5 Max robot vacuum is a smart robot that is designed for long cleaning cycles (up to 150 minutes) and doubles as a vacuum and a mop. Smarter navigation allows it to intelligently move in straighter paths and avoid obstacles. It performed well in our cleaning tests, removed an average of 91% across our 12 cleaning tests. Check Price

Pros

  • Extra-long 150 minute run time
  • On-board camera for improved navigation
  • Digital “No Go” zones
  • Solid cleaning performance, removing an average of 91% of all debris we tested against

Cons

  • Fairly expensive
  • More basic spiral bristle brushroll
  • Struggles with fine debris

Roborock S5 Max Design

The Roborock S5 Max robot vacuum is the newest model to hit the market from Roborock.

The S5 Max has a simple round body with a 360° onboard camera and basic controls.

Roborock S5 Max robot vacuum review

It comes in either all white or all black body styles for a modern aesthetic

The Controls

The controls on top of the Roborock S5 Max are minimal and modern. The top of the vacuum has only the simplest controls including:

  • CLEAN – to start or pause a cleaning cycle
  • HOME – to send the robot back to its charging base

The Underside

The underside of the Roborock S5 Max has many of the same design features as other robot vacuums in the market, with a few differences that help to set it apart.

Roborock S5 Max underside review
Underside of the Roborock S5 Max robot vacuum

There are four main parts:

  • Brushroll
  • Spinning brush
  • Mopping system
  • Wheels

SPINNING BRUSH: Along the left side, there is also a spinning brush that helps to pulls dirt and debris from edges and corners and into the vacuum’s cleaning path.

BRUSHROLL: There is a central spiral bristle brushroll in the middle of the vacuum.

Roborock S5 Max - brushroll

MOPPING PAD: The mopping system includes a small water reservoir and a microfiber mopping map. Technology on the S5 helps to keep the pad wet when in use, but not soak the floor below when the robot stops.

WHEELS: The S5 Max uses two large wheels on either side of the robot to help it transition difficult flooring changes (up to 2 cm climbability)

Roborock S5 Max - wheels

Features

Features on the Roborock S5 Max are numerous and really makes this vacuum a versatile tool in the home. Some of the top features include:

  • 2-in-1 Vaccum / Mopping
  • App control
  • 6 cleaning modes
  • Smart sensors
  • Self-adjusting brushes

2-in-1 Vacuum

The Roborock S5 Max serves the dual purpose of a dry vacuum cleaner as well as a damp mop.

RELATED: Check out our full review of the Roomba m6 mopping robot.

The vacuum has variable suction, which makes it a good option for:

  1. Hardwoods
  2. Porcelain / ceramic tile
  3. Low pile carpet
  4. High pile carpet
mopping tank on the Roborock S5 Max

For vacuuming, the S5 Max can automatically adjust suction power based on floor type. When mopping, the vacuum can detect when the flooring transitions from hard surface to carpet and will only mop the hard surface flooring.

App Control

Using the app, you can access quite a few extra features that aren’t available from the face of the vacuum itself.

Roborock app cleaning map
Roborock app cleaning maps

The app allows you to:

  1. Schedule a cleaning
  2. Digital mapping
  3. Zoned cleaning
  4. Virtual barrier
  5. No-Go zone
  6. Spot cleaning
  7. Remote control

The Roborock app works with iPhone, Android, or Amazon Alexa (which enables voice-activated cleaning cycles).

5 Cleaning Modes

The Roborock S5 Max has 5 different cleaning modes available for a variety of cycles. Modes include:

  1. Gentle: single pass, the most silent option
  2. Silent: operates at the lowest decibel level
  3. Balanced: adjust suction power, noise, and other settings
  4. Turbo: more suction than balance, but less than max, a good in-between option to help increase battery life
  5. Max: uses the highest level of suction power for the deepest (and loudest) cleaning cycle
controls Roborock S5 Max robot vacuum review

Smart Sensors

The smart sensors on the Roborock S5 Max help to make the cleaning cycles more effective. These sensors enable smarter navigating and help to make high-risk cleaning areas safer.

RELATED: Best robot vacuums of 2020

Top navigation technology on the Roborock S5 Max includes:

  • SLAM / LDS: Sensors scans the room at 5 x 360/second for distance information, which will then be computed with the SLAM algorithm to generate a real-time map. Based on these results, an optimal route will be planned for the most efficient and effective clean.
  • Anti-Collision: Allows the S5 to see obstacles better and navigate around them
  • Anti-Falling: Helps to see fall risks like stairs or lofted areas and prevents the Roborock from falling off them
  • Jam Resistant: If the Roborock gets in the tight spot, this technology will help it to squeeze its way out and prevent getting stuck and needing to be “rescued”
Sensors and camera on the Roborock S5 Max
Sensors and camera on the Roborock S5 Max

Zoned Cleanings

Since the Roborock S5 Max comes with wifi connectivity, that also means it has advanced digital mapping technology. A part of that technology is zoned cleanings.

As the Roborock cleans it makes a map of your space. You can then use that map to separate different zones like “kitchen”, “bedroom” or “living”.

Front view of the Roborock S5 Max
Front view of the Roborock S5 Max

Use the app to send the Roborock directly to certain rooms or block them off and the S5 Max will skip them altogether.

Digital No-Go Zones

If you need to block off space in a different way, the Roborock S5 also has digital No-Go Zones.

Roborock app screenshot
Zones and Keep Out Zones on the Roborock app

A No-Go zone would be like a pet feeding area or a toddler play area that might not have the toys all picked up.

Locations that could easily be a problem for a robot vacuum can safely be skipped over with the Roborock S5 Max, by simple identifying the area on the app.

Size and Dimensions

Size-wise, the S5 Max is similar to other Roborock models.

How big is the vacuum?

The Roborock S5 Max robot vacuum is the following dimension:

  • 13.8″ diameter
  • 3.8″ tall
  • 7 pounds
Relative size of the Roborock S5 Max robot vacuum

Accessories & Parts

The Roborock S5 Max robot vacuum comes with quite a few different parts and accessories, including tools for vacuuming and / or mopping, depending on the type of cleaning.

What’s in the box?

  • Roborock S5 Max robot vacuum
  • Dock charger
  • Moistureproof mat
  • Washable filter
  • Pairs of water tank filter (x2)
  • Water tank & Waterproof pad
  • Mopping cloth (x2)
  • Cleaning tool
  • Service card and user manual
Parts and Accessories - Roborock S5 Max
Parts and Accessories – Roborock S5 Max

Cleaning Performance

Performance of the Roborock S5 Max was good, averaging 91% across all floor types.

Overall

91%

Hardwoods

100%

Low Carpet

82.5%

High Carpet

89.5%

It excelled on hardwoods (100% performance) and struggled more on carpet. The biggest setback on carpet was fine debris during our sugar test.

Roborock S5 Max - hardwood cleaning test
Roborock S5 Max – hardwood cleaning test

On the low carpet, we ran the Roborock S5 on “Balanced Mode” first, where it captured 82.5%.

Roborock S5 Max - low pile carpet cleaning test
Roborock S5 Max – low pile carpet cleaning test

Noting the lower performance, we then ran it on “Max” mode and expected higher performance, but it did not collect any additional debris and left mostly sugar.

On high pile carpet, the performance was better (89.5% debris removed), although it did still struggle with sugar. I will also add that it cleaned a lot slower on high carpet, which could have attributed to the improved performance (compared to low pile carpet).

Roborock S5 Max - high pile carpet cleaning test
Roborock S5 Max – high pile carpet cleaning test

Setup & Usability

Getting the Roborock S5 Max up and running is simple and quick. Depending on what type of cleaning you want to do, there are a few different options.

  1. Fast cleaning: press START on the top of the vacuum
  2. Hands-free cleaning: use the local wifi network to pair your vacuum with the Roborock app; takes about 5 minutes
  3. Voice-controlled cleaning: pair the vacuum to Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant; takes about 5 minutes

Setting up the Vacuum

To get up and running, unbox the vacuum and remove all packaging. If it’s not already installed, install the brushroll, spinning brush, and HEPA filter.

Charge the vacuum.

To start a cleaning cycle, press the “on / off” button on the top of the vacuum.

Setting Up the Mop

To start a mopping cycle, fill the water reservoir with clean water and install it into the vacuum. Make sure the mopping pad is attached securely.

Roborock S5 Max mopping components
Accessories for mopping with the Roborock S5 Max mopping robot

Setting up the App

Installing the app takes just a few minutes.

  1. Install the Roborock app on your device.
  2. Follow the prompts to pair with the S5 Max.
  3. Start a cleaning cycle, set schedules, view cleaning performance, or check out recommended maintenance tasks.

For more versatility, you can also control the S5 Max with voice commands, when paired with a device like Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant.

Maintenance

Keeping the Roborock S5 Max in good working order is simple and takes just a few quick steps. For the best performance, do the following:

  1. Empty the dust bin and wash as needed. To wash the bin, the manufacturer recommends pouring water into the dust bin, closing the dust bin cover, shaking the bin left and right and pour out the dirty water. Repeat this step several times, until the filter clean.
  2. Clean the brushroll using the provided tool and remove any tangles, as needed.
  3. Wipe the sensors clean with a dry lint-free cloth.
  4. Wash the filter and replace, as needed.
Roborock S5 Max robot vacuum
Overview of the Roborock S5 Max review

Is the Roborock S5 Max a good value?

The value of the Roborock S5 Max is good if the features of this particular model are important to you. For the price, you do get a lot of features, but if you’re looking a lower price point you should consider the Roborock S4. The S4 is less expensive, misses a few bells and whistles, but still maintains similar cleaning performance.

That being said, overall, the Roborock S5 Max is a good value. The following features add to the bottom dollar value and make this vacuum more usable and higher performing.

A few of the top value-adding features include:

  • Long run time
  • 2-in-1 vacuum and mop
  • On-board camera for better navigation
  • 5 cleaning modes
  • Zoned cleaning
  • Wifi connectivity for hands-free control
  • Voice control capabilities
  • Self-adjusting brushes

Roborock S5 Max Specifications

For a full list of the Roborock S5 Max specifications, check out the table below:

Specifications 
TypeRobot
ManufacturerRoborock
ModelS5 Max
Length13.8"
Width13.8"
Height3.8"
Weight7.8 lbs
Floor TypeAll (indoor)
Battery5,200 mAh
Dust Bin Capacity0.3 L
ReturnsVaries by retailer
Warranty1-Year limited
PriceCheck Price

Should You Buy the Roborock S5 Max?

Specs, features, performance aside… should you buy the Roborock S5 Max robot vacuum? This robot vacuum doubles as a vacuum and robot mop, has good performance, smart features, and user-friendly controls.

I would recommend the Roborock S5 Max if you want the following in a robot vacuum:

  • 2-in-1: If you want a robot vacuum that is also a mopping robot, the Roborock S5 Max is a great option. It has an on board dry dustbin as well as water reservoir and mopping pad for use on hard surface flooring or carpet.
  • Long run time: The Roborock S5 Max can run for up to 150 minutes on a single charge.
  • Improved navigation: For better navigation across complicated floor plans, the S5 Max has an on-board camera and technology that helps to detect and avoid obstacles.

To learn more or to buy the Roborock S5 Max, you can check it out here.

2-in-1 Robot Vacuum & Mop
  • 94%
    Design - 94%
  • 91%
    Performance - 91%
  • 94%
    Quality - 94%
  • 95%
    Usability - 95%
  • 95%
    Value - 95%
94%

Summary

The Roborock S5 Max is a powerful robot vacuum that has a nice balance of smart features, good performance, and usability. It functions as a robot vacuum or a mopping robot. There are 5 different modes, although there seemed to be minimal impact in performance between the different modes. Control the vacuum with on-board buttons, your smartphone, or even your voice. If you’re looking for a smarter way to vacuum, the Roborock S5 Max could be a solid option to consider.

About Derek Hales

Derek HalesDerek Hales is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of ModernCastle.com. He has been featured in Fast Company, Reader's Digest, Business Insider, Realtor.com, She Knows, and other major publications. Derek has a Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration from Kansas State University. Hales has been testing and reviewing products for the home since 2014.

Need Help? Ask Your Question Below

  1. Hi!

    Out of S6, S5 and S5 max – which would be a better choice to go for. Are they actually very different from performance point of view?

    Reply
    • The S6 is definitely the best performer. If you have the budget, go with it. In our tests, the S5 and S5 Max had similar performance, so I’m not sure it’s worth the extra money for most consumers.

      At the end of the day, all 3 robots are fantastic. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed with any of them.

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