HOBOT 298 Ultrasonic review: window cleaning with intelligence
It's new in the shape of a square with rounded edges. The body is made of blue glossy plastic. HOBOT 298 is noticeably more compact and lighter than a conventional smart hoover. It weighs just over one kilogram, and is 24 centimetres long and 24 centimetres wide.
On the bottom there are crawler wheels, a vacuum pump to hold on to the glass, a special attachment for a wipe and a laser sensor that detects the position on the surface. On top there's a reservoir for cleaner, a power button and a start and pause button. Plus, there's a convenient handle to remove the gadget from the glass.
It comes with three Microfiber cloths. They're not disposable, so you can wash them afterwards, or wash them in the dishwasher. There is a six metre cable to connect to the mains, which is enough to avoid using extension cords or adapters in most situations. The cable is secured to the robot with a thread, avoiding the annoying situation where the device is disconnected from the power supply due to an accidental hitch in the cable. The HOBOT 298 box also contains a bottle with special cleaning fluid, a safety cord, detailed instructions in Russian and a remote control with batteries.
The cleaning cloth has a large contact surface. That is why the device can clean even large panoramic windows. The robot does the job quickly, cleans a square metre in 2.2 minutes.
The main feature of the HOBOT 298 is the Ultrasonic module. It automatically sprays cleaning fluid onto the glass as it moves. Many other window cleaners work differently. They apply water to a cloth and dry on large surfaces. However, HOBOT engineers still recommend wetting the cloth slightly, even with the Ultrasonic module. The instructions explain that this is because the gadget has a dry cloth at the beginning of the process, because it hasn't sprayed anything yet.
If the windows have not been cleaned in a long time, it is better to switch the device on in dry cleaning mode. The cleaner will go over the surface, sucking up dust and dirt - this is especially true for the outside of the window. In especially bad situations, it's easier to run a wet rag over the glass first - the robot may not be able to cope with a centimeter-long layer of dust that has accumulated over the past 10 years.
The cleaning process is simple. You need to pour the cleaning liquid into the tank on the body of the device, wet the cloth, connect the gadget to the socket, lean it against the glass and press the power button. The clever assistant makes a noise, engages with the surface and starts working.
You can select either a Z or N movement pattern on the glass with the remote control or via the app. It is possible to select both at the same time. The process is controlled by remote control or via smartphone (the utility fully duplicates the functions of the remote control). The HOBOT 298 can also be guided by a joystick to clean specific areas of the window. The mobile app contains instructions for use, answers to basic questions and instructional videos.
The robot is equipped with a laser sensor that detects the location of the unit and understands where the edges of the windows are. This allows the cleaner to take the best route for quality cleaning.
The classic three-paned windows in a Moscow khrushchevka house were washed in 15 minutes. In that time, the gadget went twice along different trajectories and left behind clean glass without streaks. Because it has a square-shaped housing, it leaves almost no gaps. Cleaner consumption is minimal: 1ml of liquid per square meter. And it cleans with normal distilled water, too.
Noise level is 64 decibels. This is a modest figure by the standards of robot cleaners. The device hums when it is working, but the noise is moderate. Pets will not flee around the flat in terror, as corded hoovers do.
The HOBOT 298 adheres firmly to the glass pane due to its powerful vacuum pump. It has such suction power that it can hold seven kilograms of weight. And because the gadget weighs just over a kilogram, there's virtually no chance of it coming off.
The pump works with electricity. To avoid unpleasant situations due to sudden power outage, the manufacturer has equipped the model with built-in battery. The battery provides 20 minutes of autonomy - during this time, you have to take the smart helper off the glass.
For added protection, there is a safety rope with a carabiner. One end of it attaches to the body of the robot, while the other end attaches to any stationary object in the room. This protects the robot against all contingencies.
The HOBOT 298 makes window cleaning much easier. Particularly important when hard-to-reach windows have to be cleaned at height. You no longer need to stand on the window sill and perform acrobatic manoeuvres in order not to fall. It would make a great gift for the elderly, as manual cleaning is physically demanding. A smart washer helps you save time and effort. It makes it easier to keep your home clean.