Wednesday, May 22, 2024
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Affordable Robot Vacuum For Parquet & Tile Surfaces


With the Freo X Plus, Narwal promises a powerful robot vacuum cleaner at an affordable price point. With a suction power of 7,800 Pa and the “Zero Tangle Brush”, the robot vacuum cleaner is supposed to remove dirt and hair from your home painlessly. Is this ideal for a $430 home appliance? In this nextpit review, we reveal the numerous strengths and the few weaknesses of the Narwal Freo X Plus.

Good

  • 1-liter dust container in the robot
  • Excellent suction power on smooth surfaces
  • No tangled pet hair or long human hair
  • Good navigation capability
  • User-friendly Narwhal Freo app

Bad

  • Suction performance is poor on carpets
  • Mopping capability is not impressive
Narwal Freo X Plus

Narwal Freo X Plus


Narwal Freo X Plus: All deals

The Narwal Freo X Plus in a nutshell

If you are looking for a reliable and powerful robot vacuum cleaner on smooth surfaces within the $400 range, the Narwal Freo X Ultra will certainly be out of your reach. On parquet and tiles, this robot vacuum cleaner can keep up with the best in the business (comparison article). Pet owners in particular will enjoy the Freo X Plus, as no pet hair gets tangled in the roller brush.

When it comes to carpets, you will have to reckon with considerably poorer performance. This also applies to the mopping result, which was not entirely impressive in the review. On the other hand, the robot vacuum scores points with its fabulous navigation and great app support.

This review is part of a collaboration between Geekmaxi and nextpit. This collaboration has no bearing on the editorial opinion at nextpit.

Design and build quality


The Narwhal vacuum robot can be set up and ready to clean in just a few minutes. The base is a charging station. It comes with a practical carpet pad to protect your floor.


Pros:

  • Quick and easy to set up
  • Stylish robot

Cons:

  • Surface of the robot is prone to scratches

The Narwal Freo X Plus hardly differs from the Narwal Freo (review) or the Narwal Freo X Ultra (review). The major difference only becomes clear when you look under the magnetic hood of the vacuum and mopping robot. This conceals a 1-liter dust container and a 280 ml water tank, typical for a Narwal machine.

You will find a 1-liter dust container and a 280-ml water tank underneath the hood.
The robot conceals a 1-liter dust container and a 280-ml water tank. / © nextpit

Optionally, you can use the included disposable dust container. In addition to two side brushes, Narwal installed a mop plate in the Freo X Plus to which you can attach a cloth. The Narwal robot measures 35 × 35.5 × 1.7 cm. In addition to the robot vacuum cleaner and mopping cloths, you will also get the docking station and an additional dust container filter. As the name suggests, the docking station is only used to charge the robot vacuum cleaner. There are no water tanks or a suction function with this model.

Narwal Freo X Plus in the station
The docking station of the Freo X Plus is only used for power supply. / © nextpit

Setting up the robot is quick and easy. You connect the robot vacuum cleaner to your Wi-Fi network and carry out any firmware updates, if available. The docking station for the robot is also very practical as Narwal helps protect your floor if you are afraid that the robot vacuum cleaner will scratch the floor when it docks.

App and functions


The Narwal Freo app offers a wide range of practical settings to clean your home. One setting in particular was especially surprising.


Pros:

  • Range of detailed cleaning settings.
  • User-friendly interface.
  • Multiple floors can be set.

Cons:


Once the robot is ready to clean and the firmware is up to date, it’s time to start mapping out your home. During the mapping process, the robot only recognized two of the three available rooms. That’s not so bad, because you can edit the map afterwards. After mapping, you can divide or combine rooms. If you want to protect your favorite furniture, you can set no-go zones for the robot. Speaking of furniture, the Narwhal Freo X Plus recognizes carpets during mapping and displays them on the map.

You can always edit the map to include incorrectly mapped rooms.
Did the Narwal vacuum robot fail to correctly recognize all rooms? Not a problem. You can edit the scanned map afterwards. / © nextpit

In the app’s main menu, you can see the image of your living space. A wide range of cleaning settings is available at the bottom. You can choose between four suction levels and three levels for mopping. You can also set how narrow the robot’s paths should be.

The app lets you choose from various suction levels and how precise it can move around.
In the Narwal Freo app, you can choose between four suction levels and three water flow rate levels. You can also specify how precisely the robot should move through your home. / © nextpit

If you are a fan of fixed routines, you will certainly like the option of scheduling the vacuuming times. You can set fixed days and times for the robot vacuum to do its work while you are away. You can also set the cleaning settings the robot vacuum cleaner should use to clean your home.

Suction and mopping performance


The Narwhal Freo X Plus vacuums excellently on tiles and parquet for a €300 robot vacuum cleaner. However, its performance on carpets decreases rapidly. In one respect, the Freo X Plus is a flagship appliance.


Pros:

  • Surprisingly good suction power on smooth surfaces.
  • Top-notch navigation capability. 
  • No problems with hair.

Cons:

  • Mop function is not usable.
  • Drop in performance when vacuuming on carpets.

The Narwal Freo X Plus achieved impressive suction results on smooth surfaces. After vacuuming, we found 95 percent of the distributed oat flakes in the Freo X Plus dust container. The robot vacuum cleaner picked up sand just as well. As if that wasn’t enough, the robot vacuum cleaner coped very well with animal or even long human hair.

  Test volume (g) Suction volume (g) Efficiency (%)
Oatmeal (tiles)
Sand (tiles)
Sand (carpet)

On carpets, the Narhal robot vacuum cleaner’s performance slowed down considerably. The 7,800 Pa suction power is not enough to confirm the result on smooth surfaces. Just 68 percent of the distributed sand was subsequently found in the dust container of the robot vacuum cleaner.

The Freo X Plus has plenty of room for improvement when mopping. The result is not surprising, as Narwal installed a mopping plate. In other words, the robot vacuum cleaner pushes a mop behind it. Don’t get us wrong, the Narwal Freo X Plus doesn’t smear dried ketchup stains, but it doesn’t manage to get rid of these stains, either. Models such as the Dreame L10 Prime are ahead of the game in this respect. What’s more, when cleaning and drying the mop, you might get your hands sticky.

The Freo X Plus is never bothered by pet hair.
Smooth surfaces are the Freo X Plus’ favorite terrain. Even pet hair doesn’t bother the robot here. / © nextpit

Your carpets are safe from this robot vacuum cleaner simply because as it detects carpets, it raises its mopping plate by nine millimetres. The navigation and obstacle detection are frighteningly good. Why do we say frighteningly good? That’s because we’re talking about a robot vacuum cleaner that costs 329. The Narwhal Freo X Plus reliably recognizes new obstacles and gets around all obstacles easily.

The Narwal Freo X Plus boasts excellent navigational skills.
No one can beat the Narwal Freo X Plus when it comes to navigation. Obstacle detection also worked wonderfully in the review. / © nextpit

Finally, the very fact that you can view the live location of the robot vacuum cleaner in the app is not something that should be taken for granted in this price range. After cleaning, the Freo X Plus returns to the docking station, where it takes exactly two hours for the robot to be fully charged. As described earlier, there are no water tanks or self-cleaning processes at the docking station. When the robot is parked in the docking station, the dust bag will be disinfected.

Know where the Narwal Freo X Plus is at all times via the app.
The Narwal app shows you the live location of the robot during cleaning. / © nextpit

Final verdict

The Narwal Freo X Plus robot vacuum cleaner performed excellently on smooth surfaces at a fantastic $400 price range. For the dog and cat owners among you, the Freo X Plus is probably the best choice if you are looking for a value-for-money recommendation. The navigation and obstacle detection capabilities are at an extremely high level.

However, not everything is rosy with the Narwal robot vacuum cleaner. The suction result on carpets is rather poor and the mopping performance is also less than satisfactory. At least the poor mopping performance was foreseeable, as Narwal uses a mopping plate and not a mop. In addition, you have to take care of cleaning and drying the mop yourself after mopping.

Nice and stylish is what you get with the Narwal Freo X Plus.
The Narwal Freo X Plus is a stylish robot vacuum with real power underneath the hood. / © nextpit

For those living in Europe, use the coupon code “7PsRaXzX” to buy the vacuum and mopping robot for 329 instead of 499. Considering the relatively low price, this is a first-class choice for those who are on a budget and want a robot vacuum cleaner to keep their smooth surfaces clean and free from pet hair. If you are in the US, use code “GMXFreoXPlus” to get the robovac for under $400.



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