roomba flashing red light while charging

Is your Roomba flashing red light while charging? You will quickly learn all the meanings behind the red light. It will vary depending on how it appears in the ring light.

To address a red light indicating a problem, start by thoroughly emptying and cleaning the bin. Additionally, clean the unit and dock, and inspect other hardware components for maintenance purposes.

The guide below will help you understand the flashing red light signals and when you should or shouldn’t worry about it.

If you should worry, we will help you examine the problem and solve it.

Roomba Flashing Red Light While Charging – Reasons

reason why roomba flashing red light while charging

Why is my Roomba flashing red? Sometimes you will put the Roomba robot to charge, and it will act weirdly.

It could beep, simply not charge, or its light would flash red. Depending on the type of red flashing, it indicates a problem. 

Let’s learn what is going on:

Pulsing Red

When the light is simply pulsing red, it tells you that the unit is charging properly. You must only suspect something is wrong if it keeps like that after a long time.

Solid Red

When the light ring is solid red, that usually indicates an error has happened. Press “Clean” to learn more details.

✅ Red Sweep Toward the Rear

If you have an S Series, the bin must be emptied. If you have an M Series, the Roomba is filling the tank.

Red Swirling

The battery is under 15%. The light should switch to white when the robot surpasses 15% of the charge.

Fix The Roomba Flashing Red While Charging

fix the roomba flashing red light while charging

As you can see, some instances where you find the Roomba’s light flashing red do not mean you have to act. Others, however, will require your attention to determine what is wrong.

We will deal with all the problems affecting your Roomba during the charging process.

1. Empty The Bin

Why is my Roomba light flashing red? Sometimes, the problem is entirely related to the dustbin. It could be out of place inside the robot or contain too much dust.

Even though some models will clear the bin as soon as the robot docks, they might have residue left.

Here is what you must do:

  1. Press the bin’s release button;
  2. Pull the bin out;
  3. Dispose of its contents;
  4. Get a wet cloth;
  5. Wipe inside and outside the bin;
  6. Let it dry;
  7. Now put it back in the Roomba.

Wash The Bin

wash the roomba's bin

Some Roomba models have a washable dustbin. You must check if that is the case of yours.

If it is so, do the following:

  1. Remove the bin from the Roomba;
  2. Dispose of its contents;
  3. Detach the filter;
  4. Rinse the bin with water;
  5. Let it dry;
  6. Reattach the filter;
  7. Reinstall the bin.

Unclog The Dustbin’s Filter

Even if the dustbin is washable, the filter most likely isn’t.

So when you detach the filter and wash the bin, the filter must be cleaned this way:

unclog the dustbin filter
  1. Use a paper towel to scrape the filter’s clogged dust;
  2. Use a dry cloth also if necessary;
  3. Is a vacuum cleaner available? It can help finish the job.

It is also important to check the filter’s condition. It is possible that the filter is worn out and requires replacement.

If that is the case, check the Roomba site to learn how to acquire a replacement filter.

Alert: Do not let water spill into the filter. That will damage the component, forcing you to buy a replacement immediately.

2. Clean The Unit Thoroughly

Another cause of the red light and other alerts coming from the Roomba could be the overall dirt/dust on your robot.

Since the robot cleans dust every day, it accumulates a bit of dust on itself too.

Here is how you must clean it:

  1. Grab a soft cloth;
  2. Wipe all of the robot’s exterior;
  3. Do the same for the docking station;
  4. Grab a soft brush and scrub the wheels;
  5. Remove the bin and clean it if you haven’t already;
  6. While the bin is out, wipe the dust from the internal sensors;
  7. Find all the external sensors and ensure they are clean;
  8. Use rubbing alcohol for a final wipe;

Paying special attention to the robot’s sensors and charging contacts is necessary.

If the sensors are too dusty, the robot will not work as intended. If the charging pins are dirty, the robot might not charge.

3. Check The Battery

check the roomba battery

Once the unit is fully clean, the battery is another potential cause of the alerts coming from the robot.

The battery could be displaced inside the unit, or it could be worn out. If your robot is a bit old already, perhaps the battery needs replacement.

Here is a good way to check what is happening:

  1. Turn the Roomba upside down;
  2. Unscrew the battery cover;
  3. Detach the battery;

Examine The Battery

Some batteries might show signs of leaking or damage when they get too old.

You must always ensure that the battery is firmly attached, the unit is well positioned for charging, and the power outlet works well.

Do the following:

  1. Wipe all of the battery container;
  2. Wipe the battery, too, to remove dust;
  3. Insert the battery inside again;
  4. Ensure it connects correctly and firmly.

If the battery is lax inside, you might want to use some sort of paper to adjust the placement.

Note: If the battery does indeed look old, damaged, etc., you must buy a replacement. Otherwise, you risk damaging the robot.

4. Assess The Docking Station

assess docking station

Beyond checking everything possible on the robot, you must check the docking station. After all, it is responsible for charging.

The docking station can become too dusty and impact the charging capacities, or it also could be damaged if you have allowed it to suffer some sort of impact.

  • Detach the robot from the dock and check the dock’s integrity. Look closely and inspect for cracks as well as signs of damage;
  • Look at the metallic charging contacts and ensure they are not rusty. If they are, you will have to remove the rust. They also must not be lodged or bent.

Ensure The Dock Can Charge The Unit

Is your robot not charging even when it stays at the dock for a long time? That can indicate that the dock is not working, which might point to a defective power cord.

First, do the following:

  1. Open your phone’s camera app;
  2. Point it to the dock’s display;
  3. Check if an IR light is flashing.

That will tell you whether the dock is working or not. 

Examine The Power Cord

examine roomba's power cord

If the IR light doesn’t show up, you might want to check the power cord. Do this:

  1. Grab a multimeter;
  2. Set it to continuity;
  3. Test the power cord.

If the cord is defective, you can replace it:

  1. Remove the part that protects the cord;
  2. Detach the cord’s internal wires;
  3. Remove it carefully;
  4. Put the new cord in place;
  5. Ensure the new connections are tight enough.
Note: Whenever you replace the power cord, you must remember that you have to buy a cord with the same electrical specs.

5. Update The Firmware

update the roomba firmware

Suppose the robot is charging, and there is nothing wrong with it hardware-wise. In that case, the red light might tell you that a firmware update is needed.

Here is how you can find and download the update:

  1. Open the iRobot HOME App 
  2. Select More 
  3. Click Settings 
  4. Choose About (robot name)

What We Learned

The Roomba flashing red light while charging doesn’t always signal something wrong with your cleaning robot.

But when it does, assessing the unit and performing a full clean is good. That way, you ensure that the device will last a long time.

Read Next: Roomba Keeps Beeping While Charging?

Nicole B