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JeffCJ
Constellation

Powerbot VR9350

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Hello,

   Recently purchased a Powerbot VR9350.  It seems to get stuck on *everything* with a "lifted" error. Chair legs are particularly problematic. 

 

In general the vacuum works. Any chance the navigation and obstacle handling will be updated in future firmware updates or should I just return it to the retailer now?

 

Thanks!

 

Jeff

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JeffCJ
Constellation

Re: Powerbot VR9350

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Thanks for the reply. I did utilize the boundary markers where appropriate. Unfortunately, the device was backing itself up onto chair legs and in other areas where boundary markers really don't make sense.

 

Ended up returning it to the retailer. The offerings from competitors seem to work much better--at least in my home. Perhaps I'll give the PowerBot series another try in the future.

 

 

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Samsung Moderator
Samsung Moderator

Re: Powerbot VR9350

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I am sorry to hear this. Did you use the boundary makers when setting up this device?


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JeffCJ
Constellation

Re: Powerbot VR9350

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Thanks for the reply. I did utilize the boundary markers where appropriate. Unfortunately, the device was backing itself up onto chair legs and in other areas where boundary markers really don't make sense.

 

Ended up returning it to the retailer. The offerings from competitors seem to work much better--at least in my home. Perhaps I'll give the PowerBot series another try in the future.

 

 

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userjifmRh3yg1
Constellation

Re: Powerbot VR9350

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userdoS8kt9Bp9
Asteroid

Re: Powerbot VR9350

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I have had several annoying simple issues:

 

1.  It routinely gets stuck on shair legs - small wooden ones - like dining room type.  It backs up into one on an angle and lifts up...this seems simple and shoudln't happen but its probably the most common biggest issue.

 

2.  I have a couple of throw rugs that were moving when the bot attempted to vacuuum so I put 'sticky'material underneath - it stopped the rug from moving but it raised it up high enough such that depending on the angle of approach the bot takes - it gets a cliff error...another frustrating feature that should be fixable.

 

There is one error in the design that they cant fix...furniture that have raised ledges a couple inches off the ground - the bot just cant see them or detect them.  It repeatedly runs into them.    Additionally, kitech cabinent overhangs where the bot can clearly go underneath but it won't.  This leaves the edges under the overhand dirty - which is where the dirt accumulates.  I typically would take a brush and sweep it out when leaving the house in the morning so the bot can clean it up.

 

Dave

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user73g8weXXXI
Astronaut

Re: Powerbot VR9350

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Is Samsung planning a fix for this?  Please reply ASAP.  If not, I am going to return it on Amazon for a full refund and get a Roomba.  Thank you.

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userobzfiWIgIj
Cosmic Ray

Re: Powerbot VR9350

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For almost two years I have successfully used a 9000 series Powerbot which had problems getting stuck against furniture legs by disabling a sensor in the wheel suspension which is incorrectly interpreted by Samsung operating firmware.  I am very satisfied with the vacuum performance after fixing it.  This sensor switch is in the suspension to detect when the robot is lifted off the floor, so the wheels are extended, shutting down for safety, stopping the wheels turning when held by hand. 

 

When the Powerbot rubs the side against an obstacle, or when the back is pressed against a wall, the torque of the drive wheels has a reaction force lifting the front, familiar in motorcylces performing a "wheelie" (so the effect is not seen pushing the robot by hand).  All robots can exhibit this effect.   The Powerbot, however, does not calculate all the relevant data, so it shuts down when only one side is raised, incorrectly interpreting this as lifting the entire robot off the floor.  Other robots recognize the robot is not lifted from the opposite side sensor not being activated, only one side lifted, and the lift not being confirmed by the optical cliff sensors (and even accelerometer if present).

 

The wheel sensor can be easily disabled by taping or tacking a bit of cardboard in the wheel well to hold the wheels in slightly, not reaching their maximum extension -- without opening the case to make any electronic alteration. There is no effect on the cleaning operation, aside from fixing this problem.   When this is done, however, the wheels will turn briefly when the robot is lifted off the floor.

 

It was possible the software would be improved with new models and the 7000 series, but I have seen customer reports of similar behavior.  It can take many cleaning runs before encountering the problem, depending on the particular furnishings present.  With all the software work for new features and WiFi communication, it is not surprising the detailed maneuvering program is never re-examined.  Yet there are numerous reports in user comments about this problem of getting stuck against furniture legs.  Those would all go away if this part of the software were fixed.   Fortunately there is a simple work around until that happens.

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Samsung Moderator
Samsung Moderator

Re: Powerbot VR9350

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We will forward these observations accordingly.  


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userobzfiWIgIj
Cosmic Ray

Re: Powerbot VR9350

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I forgot to mention the 9350 model introduced in 2016 appears to have added counterweights in the front, visible with a flashlight through the front dark plastic, which might help counteract the "wheelie" drive wheel effect, keeping the sides from lifting too far.  Other recent models may also have these counterweights, though users have not bothered to report on it.  Nevertheless, there continue to be comments about the robot getting stuck against furniture legs.  It is good to improve the drive train balance, but the software ought to be fixed to industry standards.

 

The 7000 series fixed a different problem found on the 9000 series.  With the intake moved farther forward on the 7000, the bumper on the side was able to be extended farther back, difficult on the 9000 where the brush mounting takes up room on the side.   The 9000 robot would tend to climb onto some low height things such as floor lamp bases,  when swinging the front around turning, with no bumper in the area of contact (very persistent; if it is deflected by the front bumper, it cleverly swings around the side to defeat the obstacle; but it can also turn for other reasons).   Like cats in a tree, robots often climb things they cannot get off.  Extending the bumper farther back along the side prevents this, and was possible by attaching some flat tact switches and plastic, wired in parallel with the existing bumper microswitch.   This is more for hobbyists than the simple wheel sensor work around.   The 7000 series bumper appears improved in this regard.

 

A general problem with robots is the bumpers are often too high off the floor, most noticeably failing to engage the wood runners on cantilever scandinavian furniture and tubular chair legs (some are even designer pieces), which can trap the robot.  Yet the Powerbot bumper seemed to be less of a problem in this regard.  Future designs however, should look closely at this issue, as it seems to escape most engineers in the industry.  There is even an add on bumper extension from third parties for one popular brand.   Perhaps designers should spend more time in furniture showrooms.

 

A final issue which no maker has addressed is the use of standard integrated optical proximity detector components for the cliff, or drop sensors, for stairways etc.  These components are made to measure distances using intensity of reflections and beam spread geometry, and are defeated by some dark colored floor and carpet materials, especially some pattern lines in carpets, which absorb the light affecting the intensity readings -- giving false cliff readings preventing cleaning.  The black floor limitation is noted in Samsung user guides.   A more powerful method would be parallax detection independent of the reflection intensity, set for a fixed floor distance.  Easy enought to make with discrete emitters and led's, but just not available as integrated off the shelf components.  Little circuit boards would be needed, adding to cost.  Yet this is the sort of thing Samsung is equipped to make more efficiently than others, being their business. 

 

Fortunately again a work around is available used on many robots, just covering the cliff sensors with light colored tape or paper to create a false floor.  Fine unless there are cliffs to avoid, which then need physical, magnetic or optical boundary markers inconvenient.

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Samsung Moderator
Samsung Moderator

Re: Powerbot VR9350

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Thank you for the input!


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