How does roomba find its dock?

How Does Roomba Find Its Dock?

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Are you worried about your Roomba getting lost at your organized party? 

You do not need to worry at all.

I promise your Roomba won’t start dancing with your guests. 

To be serious, Roomba uses infrared sensors along with vSLAM. These technologies help your Roomba to find a way to dock even when it is crowded, with no problems at all.

Continue reading if you want to understand the whole concept of how Roomba gets back to its dock with the help of infrared sensors along with vSLAM technologies.

How does Roomba know where the dock is?

How Does Roomba Find Its Dock?

Roomba knows where the dock is by using multiple combinations of sensors, along with vSLAM.

Most roomba models use infrared or laser sensors that help roomba to navigate in your sweet home.

Some latest and higher-end roomba models use vSLAM technology that uses a camera to map the floors and help roomba models to return home.

Let’s find which and how these two methods are mainly used to find the dock back to charging.

1. How does roomba use infrared sensors to find its dock?

When your Roomba is done cleaning your home or its battery gets low, it will try to receive infrared signals from the dock.

The dock emits a unique infrared signal that the Roomba’s infrared sensors can detect. Once the Roomba detects the signal, it will follow the signal and find its dock.

The Roomba’s infrared sensors are located in front of the bumper. They help the Roomba create a map of its surroundings, which also helps it return to its dock.

2. how Roomba uses vSLAM to map its surroundings and find its dock?

Are you confused by reading the acronym vSLAM and how vSLAM helps your roomba to get back to its dock?

Don’t be! 

Let me explain vSLAM and how it helps your roomba to get back to its dock.

What is vSLAM?

vSLAM acronym stands for visual simultaneous localization and mapping. 

It’s a major technique that is commonly used in high-end modern Roomba models for mapping the environment.

It generates a map using a camera that captures the images of your home and uses machine learning and computer vision algorithms to create a map of your home.

How does Roomba use vSLAM to map its surroundings and find its dock?

How Does Roomba Find Its Dock?

First, the Roomba’s vSLAM camera captures images of its surroundings. 

Machine learning and computer vision algorithms identify features in the images, such as the edges and corners of your home. After identifying these features, the computer vision algorithms create a map of your room. 

The Roomba uses this computer vision-based map to track its original position and get back to its dock.

How much time will roomba take to get back to its dock?

Based on my research, Roomba can get back to its dock within the range of 2 to 15 minutes, but it will still depend on some factors.

Factors that can take some time to get back to dock are:

  • Area of the room
  • Battery level of the roomba 
  • Complexity of the environment

Roomba can’t find its way home

If your roomba can’t find its way home, you should move your roomba to somewhere else.

Maybe something is coming in between the infrared sensors and light sensors. That’s why roomba is having problems finding its way home.

To resolve this issue, you should move your Roomba to somewhere else.

Why is my roomba, not docking?

Don’t confuse yourself by asking, “Why is my roomba, not docking?” 

Because I am here to assist you and help you to figure out why your roomba is not docking.

Here are the primary reasons for docking issues that you are confused about!

  1. Due to the Low Battery of your roomba 
  2. Due to blockage and dirty infrared sensors in your roomba 
  3. Due to any kind of obstruction issue with your roomba
  4. Maybe your roomba needs Quick resetting

How to troubleshoot your roomba when it doesn’t dock?

How Does Roomba Find Its Dock?

If your Roomba doesn’t dock, try offering your roomba some treats! 

Yes, treats for troubleshooting your roomba to start working again.

Let’s give a troubleshooting treat together to your roomba when your roomba is having a problem in docking.

Follow this guide with steps!

Step 1. Inspect your battery 

The battery is like food energy for your roomba, so always ensure that its battery level is high; if the battery level is down, it won’t dock itself back. 

Roomba always needs some power to reach the dock, provide sufficient battery and ensure the battery inside of a roomba is up to mark! 

If you have a doubt that your roomba battery is dead, then replace the battery inside of a roomba with a new one.

Step 2. Inspect the sensors of your roomba 

Sensors are like a brain for your roomba that transmits messages and becomes a communication assistant between you and your roomba.

Roomba dock transmits infrared singles that your roomba receives and starts moving towards the dock, but if your roomba is not moving towards the dock, that means there is some issue with the sensors of your roomba device.

There is a possibility that your roomba sensors are dirty or blocked, So to resolve it, clean your roomba sensors carefully with a soft cloth.

Step 3. Inspect the docking station carefully

Look at your docking station carefully, and inspect the power plugs of your roomba. Don’t forget to clean the contacts of your roomba and docking station. 

While inspecting, if you see any damage in your roomba, replace it with a new docking station.

Step 4. Ensure zero obstruction between roomba and dock

There are high chances of obstruction between Roomba and docking stations due to furniture, cord, and other objects like toys and shoes that are placed between your Roomba and dock. 

Roomba uses infrared signals to communicate with roomba; sometimes, these obstructions block the infrared signals and don’t allow roomba to get back to its dock.

Remove these obstructions and try to place your roomba in any central location of your home, and keep away your dock from objects that are causing obstructions.

Step 04: Reset your roomba

If nothing works with all troubleshooting treats for your roomba, try to provide a major treat in the form of resetting your roomba.

Resetting your roomba is very easy; just press and try to hold the Home+Clean+Dock buttons for at least 15 seconds.

If you want more information about resetting your roomba, try this guide written by me; How To Reset The Irobot Roomba I7?


Digging out about how roomba finds its dock is very important if you are a roomba owner because we all should know how technology works. 

Roomba uses infrared sensors to find its dock, but the latest models also come with vSLAM, which is a modern way of mapping a home with the help of a camera.

Infrared sensors send signals from a dock, and roomba receives those signals and tries to reach its dock. 

Similarly, vSLAM captures the images with the camera and creates a map using computer vision technology roomba follows the a and reaches back to its dock.

That’s how easy it is to use roomba technology; if you have any questions, do ask we will try to guide you accordingly.


Does roomba have suction?

Yes, roomba comes with a suction that is used to pick up the dirt from the floors.

How does a roomba map a room?

Roomba uses VSLAM technology to map a room; it’s called visual simultaneous localization and mapping. 

How is roomba programmed?

Roomba is programmed with C, C++, LISP, and AIML languages.

Thanks For Visiting!

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