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(lil) Green Karma from replacing Roomba Batteries

June 23, 2008

Our well loved and perfectly functional Roomba has been suffering from battery age.  Unfortunately, iRobot is charging about 50% of the replacement price ($69 vs $150) just for a new battery (see buying tip below).  I was choking about the cost and found a nice Roomba hack site suggesting that the batteries were just C-cell NiMh and could be easily replaced.

Even better, I found a vendor with a $30 DIY battery replacement kit that included the required triangle head screw driver.  Woo Hoo!  Instructions require a little instructional soldering for my 10 year old.  Extra bonus!

I just wish our products were built to be more sustainable.  Better link to Story of Stuff again.

Roomba Batteries

Note: our usage of the Roomba requires NONE of the fancy features they they up-up-upsell to unsuspecting buyers.  For our usage, scheduling is done with the (cleverly marked) start button, virtual walls are replaced by (gasp) doors, and we (groan) carry the handy robot back for recharging.  I highly recommend buying a very base model and skipping all the extras.

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