roomba not emptying itself

Wondering why is your Roomba not emptying itself?

One of the most popular robot vacuum cleaners is Roomba. When we have the Self-Emptying Station we expect our device to automatically dispose of the bin and continue its operation.

This makes the automatization process complete, but sometimes there are complications!

When Roomba does not automatically empty its bin when it becomes full the Home Base is too dirty, obstructed, or not turned ON. Another reason would be a non-compatible docking station as well as the Do Not Disturb mode.

Let’s review the general causes why Roomba is not emptying itself after cleaning:

Why Is Roomba Not Self-Emptying?

why roomba is not emptying itself

The reason could be different each time and the very best way to determine the true cause is to follow Roomba around to learn what happens.

When the robot goes to the Self-Cleaning Base Station, the bin should be emptied, after or mid-cleaning session. Then the robot continues!

Let’s find out what further factors contribute to the self-cleaning issue:

1. Do not Disturb Mode is active!

The Roomba mobile app does not disturb mode and allows you to stop the Roomba from producing noise whenever you enable it.

The drawback of this mode is that it prevents the bin from being emptied, therefore Roomba skips this step. 

2. Fully Clogged Base Station

When Roomba’s clean base or evacuation port is blocked, it cannot clean its bin because it is overflowing with dirt and hair.

The Self-Emptying Base Station has to be regularly cleaned to be free of obstructions and for the Robot to be able to automatically dispose of the bin.

3. Incompatible Roomba Bin

If your Roomba is not compatible with the evacuation port, then it cannot be capable of cleaning the dirt at the clean base.

Find a Self-Emptying compatible bin to install for your iRobot.

4. Insufficient Power Supply

Clean Base operates on the power supply, but whenever there is insufficient power or fluctuations the clean base is incapable of emptying the bin.

The same goes for when the Cleaning Base Station is turned OFF or not connected to a power source at all.

Let’s continue with the best solutions that can assist you in solving this issue.

How To Fix When Roomba Won’t Empty Bin?

how to fix the roomba

We will now talk about a solution that really helps you in solving this issue. However, be sure to read all the solutions and apply them properly.

This will not only help you solve the problem but also prevent this from happening in the future.

Let’s jump right in!

Solution #1 Clean The Clogs From Clean Base

Due to the lot of dirt and hairs, the Roomba clean base got clogged and its Evac Bag got full.

The Evac bag is in the clean base used to store dirt until it becomes full. Due to this, the evacuation port became clogged, therefore Roomba is not emptying itself.

All you need to do is to unclog the Roomba and replace the Evac Bag. 

Here’s how to clean a clogged Roomba:

  1. Unplug the clean base station and automatic dirt proposal from the socket.
  2. Remove the robot from the clean base.
  3. Turn down the clean base and find a clog.
  4. Remove all the hair and debris from the clean base bottom.
  5. Also, remove all the dust from the evacuation tube.
  6. After cleaning both components, place them in their positions.
  7. Press the Home button.
Note: Problem not solved? Try the other solutions listed below.

Solution #2 Manually Clean Roomba Bin

manual clean the bin

Here is another solution that will hopefully work for you. When your bin is clogged or full, it cannot clean the dirt itself, so now we are now discussing ways for manual implementation.

Here are the ways to manually clean:

  1. Click on the HOME button from the Roomba when it is on the clean base. 
  2. From the iRobot app, click the Empty Bin button that is directly below the Clean button. 
  3. If the Empty Bin button is not there, then take your Roomba 8 feet away. 
  4. Press the Empty Bin button now.
  5. Roomba should come back to the base station and empty the bin. 
Tip: Use compressed air to clean the inside area of the bin and retest again. 

Solution #3 Clean Charging Contacts & Communication Window

clean the charging contacts

Roomba empties its bin when the base is clean and Roomba can communicate.

Because of these two aspects, your Roomba is able to complete the schedule automatically.

Here is the way to clean the charging contacts and communication window:

  1. Unplug the base station for 1 minute.
  2. Take a melamine foam to clean the dirt from the charging contacts. 
  3. Take a soft cotton cloth and clean the docking sensor window from the home base. 
  4. Allow the device to discharge for a while.
  5. Test whether your Roomba will now automatically empty the bin.
Tip: Keeping the device unplugged for longer power cycles makes the device more efficient.

Solution #4 Clean The Sensors

Sensors play a very important role in the Roomba in doing every task. By using Roomba for a long period and using it too much, dirt gets clogged into the sensors.

This way, they are unable to communicate with the Base Station. To solve this, you just need to clean the sensors

clean the sensors

Follow the steps below to clean the Roomba sensors:

  1. Remove the dustbin from the iRobot Roomba.
  2. Clean the dustbin with a foam wipe or fiber cloth.
  3. Place the dustbin back in its position.
  4. Wipe clean the 2 x front, 2x side, and 2 x back sensors.

This will not only help Roomba reach the Cleaning Base Station but also improve the robot’s navigation.

When you’re ready, place Romba near the base station to see whether the robot will empty its dustbin automatically.

In case it doesn’t, jump to the next step!

Solution #5 Disable (DND) – Do Not Disturb Mode

iRobot has introduced an amazing feature to not disturb pets and people. They introduced a Do Not Disturb Mode.

By turning on this mode, the Roomba will not make any sounds and temporarily disable the self-emptying step.

To disable the DND mode, follow the steps below:

  1. Open the Roomba’s Home App.
  2. Select your cleaner Robot and go to Settings.
  3. From there select Robot Settings.
  4. Make sure that the Do Not Disturb Mode is disabled.
  5. Tap on the slider once to Enable/Disable the mode.

When the DND mode is left on for a longer period of time, Roomba’s bin gets full, therefore preventing the robot from completing the cleaning schedule.

Note: Keep the DND mode disabled when you want Roomba to clean efficiently.

Solution #6 Check Clean Base Power Supply

check the clean base

As soon as the Clean Base station is connected to the power supply, Roomba and Clean Base begin to communicate.

However, you can’t expect Roomba to empty itself in a non-working base station.

This is why we strongly recommend power cycling the Home Base!

Simply disconnect the Home Base from the power supply for at least 3 minutes!

Upon plugging the device back into the power, the LED should blink in green as an indication of receiving power.

In case the device does not receive power, use a different wall outlet.

Note: Avoid plugging the Roomba’s Base Station into a power strip!

Solution #7 Reset Your Roomba

reset the roomba

The final and most powerful solution is to factory reset your Roomba since if you’re that far in the guide, chances are that there is a software problem with the robot.

The factory reset reinstalls the operating system of Roomba and you’ll need to pair the robot to the app again.

Note: The smart maps and settings from the app won’t be erased!

Here are the steps to reset your Roomba:

  1. Take your Roomba and press and hold the Clean Button for 25 seconds.
  2. When you release the button, you’ll see the white light show and swirl in a clockwise direction while the Roomba resets.
  3. In a few seconds, the light turns off, which indicates that the process is successful.
Tip: In case the problem continues, contact iRobot Support for more help!

Quick Recap:

You can resolve the problem of the Roomba not emptying itself by cleaning dirt manually from the sensors, charging contacts,  communication window, and also from the bin. Also, make sure that the Cleaning Base Station is connected to the power, and don’t forget to disable the Do Not Disturb mode. 

Final Thoughts:

In this guide, we have thoroughly discussed why Roomba not emptying itself and shared many methods to fix this problem.

Sometimes all the setup needs to start functioning well again is some maintenance so make sure to inspect everything before drawing conclusions!

Nicole B