While there are a number of good robotic vacuums that mop, the mopping feature almost always underwhelms, that is why I prefer a separate robot that is just for mopping.
In this post, I’m going to compare two fantastic robotic mops, the ILIFE w450 vs w400.
Both of these Shinebot models have rotating brushes, separate clean and dirty water tanks and smart navigation, but what separates them and makes one best? Let’s dive in.
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W450 vs W400 floor washing robot: Which should you buy?
These are two interesting robot mops from iLife. Between the two robots, the W450 offers more advanced features, including app control for better customization, smarter navigation and a cleaning solution for shinier floors.
The W400 floor washing robot is also a good buy, because even without bells and whistles it still has the ability to wipe dirt and smudges off of your floors, leaving them significantly cleaner, and it comes at a cheaper price.
If you’re more concerned about price, consider the W400. But if you want it all; better navigation and better cleaning with a detergent for stubborn stain removal, plus app control and smart features, then the Shinebot W450 is your robot. It’s certainly a better buy because it outperforms the W400.
iLife Shinebot W400
iLife Shinebot W400 is the most basic model and the first product in the iLife W series. It’s a budget-friendly floor washing robot with a unique mopping power. It uses two separate water tanks, a microfiber roller and a rubber scraper to mop up stains from a variety of floor types.
This robot is also equipped with an excellent battery, decent suction power, and impressive laser navigation capabilities for obstacle avoidance and efficient cleaning. The W400 floor washing robot mops with only clean water (no cleaning solution required) and yet it leaves your floor noticeably shiner and cleaner than before.
As an entry-level robot, the iLife Shinebot W400 doesn’t have app control and isn’t compatible with Alexa or Google Home, but it does come with a remote control and gives voice alerts, plus a 1-year warranty from iLife.
- Good mopping performance
- Excellent navigation and battery life
- Reusable microfiber brush roll
- It’s worth the money
- 12-month warranty
- No app control
- Cleans with just water
- Too tall to clean under furniture and cabinets
Last update on 2021-02-09 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
iLife Shinebot W450
Compared to the W400, the Shinebot W450 mopping robot is a more advanced model with a few upgrades and extra features for better cleaning.
First off, it has everything you get in the iLife W400; two separate water tanks, a microfiber brush roll, a rubber scraper, decent suction power, excellent battery life and high cleaning effectiveness. However, the W450 is able to provide better cleaning because unlike the iLife W400, it uses a cleaning solution to get rid of tough stains.
It also has an upgraded navigation technology; in addition to the laser sensors, the W450 also has an upgraded Panoview navigation technology for better systematic navigation.
And lastly, this robot is Wi-Fi enabled and compatible with the iLifeHome app, which includes more customizable options for personalizing your cleaning.
- Intelligent home cleaning
- Excellent navigation and battery life
- Reusable microfiber brush roll
- Wi-Fi enabled with app control
- 12-month warranty
- Wi-Fi only supports 2.4G, not 5G
- Too tall to clean under furniture and cabinets
Last update on 2021-09-14 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
Side by side comparison
Size and design
The W400 and W450 have the same size and design; beautiful black color with gray accents. But they are much taller than the average robot, probably due to the two tanks for clean and dirty water. The robots measure 11” W x 11.5” L x 4.6” H and weigh about 7.3 pounds.
4-step cleaning process
These two floor washing robots both follow the same 4-step cleaning pattern, which iLife refers to as the TidalPower cleaning system. They both start off with spraying clean water on the floor. Then, using a microfiber roller brush, they roll over the water, scrubbing off dirt and debris in the process. Next, the water on the floor will be sucked into their dirty water tanks, and finally, a rubber scraper off by cleaning any remaining mess on the floor.
Separate water tanks
The W450 and W400s both have separate tanks for clean and dirty water. The 850ml clean water tank stores the water used for cleaning, while the 900ml dirty tank stores the water collected after cleaning. A full tank of water is sufficient for mopping up to 400 sq ft. in about 30 to 40 minutes.
Built-in drop sensors
Similar to most robotic cleaners out there, the W400 and W450 both have built-in sensors for intelligent navigation and drop sensors to avoid stairs and prevent a catastrophic fall. However, neither of these robots have smart mapping technology, and therefore they’re both unable to “learn” and “remember” the layout of home during future cleaning.
Both robots are reasonably quiet and won’t disturb you at all. The decibel sounds are not specified, but they’re quiet enough for you to carry on with normal conversations, watch TV or do practically whatever you want in the same room that’s been cleaned.
Multiple cleaning modes
Each of the robots has a control panel with a few buttons for getting it started and selecting your preferred cleaning mode. There is a “Clean” button, which prompts the robot to start a cleaning cycle. And there is a “Mode” button for selecting one of the four different cleaning modes; Area, Path, Spot and Edge.
The Path Mode cleans the entire floor while avoiding obstacles, the Spot Mode mops deep cleaning specific spots on the floor. With the Area Mode, the robot only focuses on the area directly in front of its starting point, and the Edge Mode is for mopping only edges and corners.
Both robots have similar battery capacity, with 300 minutes charging time and a maximum of 80 minutes cleaning time depending on cleaning settings. It’s also important to note that these robot mops do not have the automatic recharge feature that is seen in many robotic vacuum cleaners. With the Shinebot W400s and W450, you will have to manually pick them up and return to the charging dock for a recharge.
To aid with interactive operation, these robots are equipped with voice alerts. They don’t connect to Alexa or Google Home, but have their own integrated voice commands for giving important updates. For instance, during a mopping cycle you may hear voice alerts like “Please check the clean water tank,” “Low battery,” etc. These are very helpful alerts, but you can only hear them if you’re in the same room with the robot.
These two robots both come with a 12-month warranty from iLife.
Laser SLAM vs Visual SLAM
To enable smart cleaning, the W400 and W450 are equipped with sensors for advanced obstacle avoidance and navigation. However, the two floor washing robots are not built the same in this area. The W400s has an integrated SLAM navigation, while the W450 robot mop features a more powerful VSLAM technology for better intelligence and smarter navigation.
Remote control vs App control
Another aspect where there is a notable difference between these gadgets is the control options. For the W400, the control options include the control panel on the robot and additional remote control. The W450 also has a control panel on the robot, but uses the iLifeHome app for convenience.
From the app, you monitor your robot from anywhere and get more options for customization such as adjust travel speed, water output, brush roller speed, etc.
As expected, these gadgets have different price tags, with more than $100 difference in price. The W450 obviously costs more than the W400.
iLife W450 vs W400: How do they perform?
When it comes to cleaning performances, these two robots are almost evenly matched, but the W450 takes the lead. They are both excellent mopping robots, actually they are among the best mopping robots on the market. The sensors and laser navigation of these robots are excellent, they are able to efficiently avoid obstacles, including carpets and rugs.
When approaching an obstacle, the robots will slow down and change direction, which is very impressive. However, you may want to move some delicate items like toys out of the way before sending out the robot(s), as this ensures a seamless clean.
Each robot sprays water from the clean water tank onto the floor, scrubs with the microfiber brush roll and suck up the water. Both the W400 and W450 leave floors noticeably cleaner than they met it, this is also pretty evident from what you’ll find in the dirty water tank after each cleaning.
Their water tanks may be small, but it’s enough to clean up to 1500 sq ft floor. This is truer for the W450 because it has adjustable water flow levels and mopping speed.
These robots do an impressive cleaning job, but they do have a couple of drawbacks. First, the suction force is not nearly enough because they do not pick up all the water they put out and tend to leave small puddles and wet spots in a few places, which will have to be manually mopped up by you.
Also, they are better at cleaning laminate and wooden floors than tiles. And before each mopping, you will need to prepare your floors by running a robot vacuum to sweep up debris, since these robot mops don’t vacuum like the Roborock S7.
One last note, the Shinebot W400 and W450 are best for cleaning moderately dirty floors, and not for mopping filthy floors that have been neglected for several weeks or months.
These robots do require some maintenance to keep them running. Despite being automatic mopping robots, you do need to prepare them for a mopping cycle and also clean out the gadget and charge it after every mopping session.
To prepare it for cleaning, make sure the dirty water tank is empty and refill the clean water tank with fresh water. Also make sure the robot mop is fully charged and the microfiber roller brush and the scraper are properly attached. Then push the “Clean” button and select your preferred cleaning mode. This is relatively very easy compared to cleaning the robots after.
After each mopping session, iLife recommends that the dirty water tank should be promptly emptied and washed under running tap water. The roller brush, scraper and filter also need to be washed under running water. Fortunately, removing and fixing these parts of the robots is easy. And the W450 robot mop comes with a floor cleaning solution, a cleaning tool and a replacement roller.
After washing the parts of the robot, they should be left to air dry before recoupling. Also remember to remove any remaining cleaning liquid and rinse out the cleaning solution reservoir, it’s important that you store the robot without any fluid in it.
This may come across as too much work, but it’s actually not as bad as it sounds, especially when compared to scrubbing the floor with a regular mop and emptying the skanky mop buket.
A couple of alternatives to consider
While the iLife robots are great mopping robots, they’re certainly not for everyone and there are some great alternatives to consider.
iRobot 240 Braava Robot Mop – something cheaper for smaller areas
For starters, if you want a cheaper robot mop with excellent features and more-than-decent cleaning performance, then the iRobot Braava Jet 240 is a solid choice.
At $129, this robot mop is great at cleaning light to medium stains using warm water, cleaning solution and cleaning pads and works on a variety of hard floors. Its compact size permits it to smoothly drive under furniture, below cabinets, and into tight corners, unlike the bulky iLife Shinebot series.
The lower price tag of the iRobot Braava jet makes it ideal if you’re working with a small budget and it does a good job. However, it’s worth mentioning that the robot uses disposable pads therefore you’ll have to factor in the cost of always purchasing reusable cleaning pads and a cleaning solution. As opposed to the iLife Shinebot W400 robot mop, which has a reusable cleaning pad and requires no cleaning solution.
Roborock S7 Robot Vacuum and Mop – Top pick for a vacuum robot & mop combo
Another excellent alternative to the iLife Shinebot W series is the Roborock S7. This is a high-end robot vacuum and mop combo with simultaneous vacuuming and mopping, plus automatic real-time mapping capabilities.
This robot has some very advanced features like the sonic mopping system for scrubbing off dried dirt and tough stains, and superior suction power to automatically mop hard floors and vacuum carpets in one cleaning session. Plus, it returns to it’s charging dock for a recharge.
It’s also compatible with Alexa and Google voice controls and connects to the Roborock app for assessing a list of exciting customizable features, including no-go zones, no-mop zones, room-specific cleaning, real-time mapping, etc. As a premium robot, Roborock S7 is above the $600 mark, but it’s a top-tier gadget and a great investment if you have the budget for it.
Will the W400 and W450 also vacuum the floor?
These robots are designed to only mop the floor and not sweep like robot vacuums. Therefore don’t expect them to do any form of vacuuming. However, they are able to pick up some pet hair and dust particles using the spinning brush.
Do you need to sweep first?
Yes, before sending out any of the robots, it’s important to first run a vacuum robot to sweep up debris to prepare it for mopping. Doing this will give you a much shinier and cleaner floor after each mopping.
Can we use our own cleaning solution?
No, you should not because iLife recommends that you use only their cleaning solution for the W400s and W450. The Shinebot W400 doesn’t require any cleaning solution, since it’s designed to clean with just water.
What is the difference between W400 and W400s?
iLife Shinebot W400 and W400s are basically the same robot and function the same way The only difference is the W400s is compatible with the ILIFE app for better cleaning controls such as water flow and brush speed.
The iLife Shinebot W450 and W400 are two robot mops with very similar design features, and they both provide good robotic home cleaning. However, the iLife W450 is more advanced than the W400 and also costs more than the W400, which isn’t a surprise.
While the W400 has only the most basic features, the W450 comes with a couple of smart features, making it the more efficient and better robot. Therefore, we recommend the iLife Shinebot W450, the extra investment is certainly worth it.