Roomba Won’t Dock? (Do this 5 Things)

Getting stuck while returning to the docking station or not returning to the dock is a common issue for iRobot Roomba users.

You are here because you too the victim of this issue. Either your Roomba isn’t docking correctly or is not able to return to the dock, right?

In most cases, this issue happens due to dirty or damaged navigation sensors.

However, let’s dive into the deep…

Why is my Roomba not docking?

Why is your Roomba wont dock

Your Roomba isn’t docking because something is preventing it from correctly docking into its charger station or it’s having problems navigating back to the dock.

This could also mean that dust or debris has accumulated on the charging contacts and is preventing the device from connecting with the home base.

Look at this table:

Reason for docking issue Solution
Low battery Charge the Roomba’s battery and ensure it has enough power to dock.
Obstructed docking station Check the docking station for any obstructions that may be preventing the Roomba from docking.
Dirty or blocked sensors Clean the Roomba’s sensors with a soft, dry cloth to ensure they can detect the docking station.
Roomba needs resetting Reset the Roomba by holding down the Clean button for 10 seconds until it beeps.

What to troubleshoot when Roomba won’t dock properly?

Roomba not docking

When Roomba fails to return to the docking station or won’t dock entirely, do these things:

Step 1: Check the battery level

I think this is the very first step in troubleshooting.

Check whether the vacuum has enough power to return to the dock. If the battery is low or not charged correctly, it may not be able to make it back to the docking station.

Step 2: Check the docking station:

Ensure that the docking station is properly plugged in and there are no obstructions blocking the Roomba from reaching it.

Also, make sure that the charging contacts on the Roomba and docking station are clean.

Step 3: Check the Roomba’s sensors

Roomba uses infrared sensors to detect the docking station.

If these sensors are dirty or blocked, Roomba won’t be able to locate the docking station. Clean these sensors with a soft, dry cloth.

What if the above solution doesn’t work?

Roomba still wont dock

If all else fails, factory reset the Roomba.

Resetting is a pretty simple task. All you need to press and hold the HOME+CLEAN+DOCK button for about 15 seconds.

If you are interested in reading a detailed step-by-step guide on resetting the Roomba, check out this guide.

But remember, after a factory reset, you have to remap your house. Try backing up your map or other saved configuration.


Q. How does a Roomba find its dock?

Roomba uses a combination of sensors and algorithms to find its way home. First, it uses infrared sensors to detect obstacles and identify potential paths. Then, it uses a combination of wheel sensors and cliff sensors to map out its surroundings.

Once the Roomba has built a map of its environment, it uses an algorithm to calculate the best path back to its dock.

Q. Why does my Roomba take so long to dock?

The first reason is that the dock itself may be dirty or obstructed, preventing the Roomba from aligning correctly. Another possibility is that the Roomba’s battery is low, causing it to move more slowly.

Finally, it’s also possible that the Roomba’s sensors are dirty or faulty, preventing it from correctly detecting the dock.

Q: How do I clean my Roomba sensors?

To clean the Roomba’s sensors, use a soft, dry cloth to gently wipe away any dirt or debris that may be obstructing the sensors.

Avoid using any liquids or cleaning solutions. Because these can damage the sensors.

Also make sure that the sensors are not covered by any accessories or attachments, as this can also prevent the Roomba from detecting the docking station.

Q: Can I manually dock my Roomba?

Yes, you can manually dock your Roomba by placing it directly in front of the docking station and pressing the Dock button on the Roomba or the virtual wall.

This can be useful if the Roomba is having trouble finding the docking station on its own.


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