Neato Robotics ® XV 21 – Full Review

 Neato XV-21 Pet & Allergy Automatic Vacuum Cleaner

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The world of robotics got a little sweeter when Neato Robotics introduced their XV models back in 2010. And there is one particular Neato model, the Neato XV-21 that should be in your browsing list when shopping for a viable piece of automated equipment to help with your vacuuming chores.

The Neato XV-21 is an older released vacuum bot by the Neato company that was advanced at the time and marketed towards pet hair and allergen reduction in floor spaces. Although it has similarities and differences in comparison to the Neato XV Essential and other bot models released in the same time frame, it does boast a few unique features that you should know about.

The Neato XV-21 is lower priced than most of the newer models available today, and varies in price according to retailers, however in most cases it will cost you around $650. You can often find it cheaper when discounts and vendors are offering incentives to move their stock.

The Neato XV-21 is robotic vacuum built to attack pet hair, pet dander, tiny dust particles and airborne allergens that flourish on your floors and carpeting. It is claimed that this model can vacuum on any surface- stone, laminate, wood, tile, marble, and carpets.

Its filtration system is said to be 3x more powerful than standard filters and works in combination with a brush roller system that brushes up debris as it is suctioned into the filter and trash bin. Its navigation system is typical Neato Robotics fashioned laser pointers that work to scan the space for dirt and the ideal way to approach cleaning it.

One thing users prefer in lieu of the way that Neato XV-21 works in comparison to the Roomba 600 series released nearly the same time is that this robot actually plots, maps, and thinks about how it must tackle a floor space. It usually leaves a nice little pattern of track marks and does not randomly pass over spaces.

It is not powered nor does it include a remote control, all digital controls are located on the machine itself. It’s got a power button that can turn the machine on and off, and LCD panel that reads words (not symbols) to indicate errors, low battery, recharge status, scheduled cleaning sessions, and spot mode.

Customer Reviews & Feedback


Neato ® XV 21 Review66% of 4-5 star ratings:
The Neato XV-21 has received over 1800 reviews from consumers who have purchased it, out of that 66% have given it 4-5 stars for its performance on multiple types of floor surfaces. Most strengths of this bot are listed as it cleans pet hair well, does not get lost, cleans in a smart pattern, finds it base and picks up where it leaves last cleaned, and avoids bumping into obstacles and furniture.

16% of 2-3 Star Ratings:
The 16% of star ratings provided by users of this machine, rated it 2-3 stars because of fault with the trash bin popping up and causing errors. They also gave it lower marks for poor battery life, inconsistencies in its cleaning abilities, and it not lasting or working proficiently after extended use and a year or two or ownership.

18% of 1 Star Ratings:
The 1 star raters gave bad rankings for the Neato XV-21 for reasons mentioned such as it not working right long-term, reading multiple errors referring to the dirt bin, and its durability overall to withstand years of extended use. Additionally, consumers also said in their reviews that the XV-21 also will stop cleaning after only being in use 5 minutes.

YouTube reviews:

Product Features

The Neato XV 21 has a design that is much different than other robots released in 2011/2012 it resembles that of an older Nintendo gaming system or that of a space age movie with its palette of colors in orange, grey and purple.

It tips the scales at 8.6 pounds, 4 inches tall, 13 inches from side to side and 12.5 inches in length.


The Neato XV 21 was developed to improve those who suffer from pet and airborne allergens quality of life- its filter alone is claimed to have up to 3x more capturing and collecting power than other standard vacuum filters.

And not only does it reduce these allergens, but it also was created to alleviate the time-consuming chore of manually sweeping and vacuuming floor surfaces.

Although it’s cleaning power will not stand up to the latest Roomba 880, in its time this Neato model was considered to be a viable asset for its innate ability to alleviate allergens, and for the amount of dirt and debris it is capable of sucking up with its high airflow motor.

The only downside to bristle brush systems to break up debris on these types of robots is that often hair and bigger debris can break and damage the brushes or get caught up in the machine.


Most of the Neato XV models including the Neato XV-21 use a high-tech special laser feature in their systems known as an RPS (Room Positioning System) that helps the bot to be smart about how it scans, visualizes, predicts, and maps out a room before it cleans.

This is demonstrated in large difference to the randomness that other bots that use IR (infrared light, and radio frequencies.) Instead the Neato V-21 actually plots out the best way to clean a room. This results in a more organized cleaning process, more efficient coverage of space, and patterns on the carpet that look as if they were manually cleaned.

Added Navigation Feature: The Neato XV-21 includes a magnetic strip roll as an accessory with your purchase. This strip can be cut and placed in spaces of your home which you DO NOT want the bot to clean. This feature alone allows you to have more control over where and how the bot navigates and designates it to clean exactly where you want it to.

Programming and Controls

The Neato XV 21 includes most of all the standard programming features on its control panel as with the former XV models and the XV Signature Pro and Signature standard.

It can be set into spot mode (where it cleans a certain spot in detail in a radius of a certain measurement. It can clean as scheduled up to 7x a week, 1x per day. It will also alert you through the panel that it has an error, is short on battery life, is in process of cleaning, is recharging, or the trash bin needs to be emptied.

It Does NOT come with a remote, every setting, programming and function has to be designated through accessing the bot itself.

What’s in the Package

When you order the Neato XV 21 you will receive in box the following items:

  • The Neato XV-21 Vacuum Bot
  • Charging Base/Dock
  • Cord for the Base
  • 1 Combo Brush
  • 1 Blade Brush
  • 1 High-Performance Filter
  • Battery (6-month warranty)
  • Magnetic Strip Tape (For Boundary Marking)

Product Replacements and Accessories

There are some accessories that you may want to purchase additionally to help you have a better experience with how this robot vacuum performs.

There are also other replacement parts that you will need to invest in after extended use of your Neato XV 21. Some of these replacement parts and accessories are listed below:

Battery Replacement: The batteries on these Neatos tend to have Big problems. You have a 6-month warranty that covers issues before this time period expires. When the warranty has expired, then you will need to purchase batteries for your Neato every 6-8 months for it to work properly.

Charging Dock/Home Base: If for some reason a single base is not enough for you, you can buy extra docks home bases for your Neato at a separate cost.

Extra Brushes: Brushes get worn down after long-term use, however you can buy replacement brushes for your Neato for an inexpensive cost.

Extra Filters: The Neato Xv 21 comes with one filter. These filters get worn and dirty over use and do not work as well. You will need to replace the filter on your bot every 6-12 weeks for your bot to optimally reduce allergens.

Magnetic Strip Tape: The tape that enables your Neato to detect where it should not clean can be purchased individually when your first supply runs out.

Warranty & Support


The Warranty on the Neato XV 21 like other Neato Robotics vacuum bots is included with a 6 month warranty on the battery and a 1 year limited warranty on the machine itself.

For more warranty information & details, and customer service inquiries contact Neato Robotics with details provided below OR if purchased through Amazon contact the seller direct for the best service.


  • By Phone.
  • By Email.
  • Live Chat.
  • Online FAQs and tutorials.

Frequently Asked Questions

When purchasing a product it is common for a consumer to have many questions. Here are a few that we found most helpful with answers:


How well does it transition between different flooring types?

From real user accounts this model Neato does an acceptable job at transitioning between different floor types. It’s versatile.

Is the trash bin popping up a real big issue I should be concerned about?

The trash bin is located on the very top of the machine, and it’s frequently producing issues in all Neato models not just the XV-21. It is something that has never been remedied other than the advancement and flaws addressed in some of the newest XV models. There are many consumers who have had this issue, however it does not happen to everyone.

Does it bump into things frequently?

The laser technology helps this Neato to not bump into obstacles or furniture- if it senses something it will usually avoid it entirely.

Does it efficiently reduce pet hair?

Yes. This bot cleans very efficiently and the filter really helps in a noticeable way to reduce and suck up pet hair and allergens according to customers.

Can I manually wash and clean filter between replacements?

Yes, You can. But it is advised that you do not submerge the filter in water- instead use a brush to sweep out the dust and debris.

Is the Neato XV 21 comparable to the Roomba 880?

No. The Neato XV-21 is a model that was released in 2012, The Roomba 880 has far advanced features and technology that have been introduced recently.

Is there a way I can block off areas of my home I don’t want cleaned?

Yes. You can use the magnetic strip tape included with your purchase to mark off boundaries and areas.

Can the Neato XV-21 handle puddles or liquids?

NO. The Neato is meant to pick up dry dirt, dust, and debris- it is not a bot that can handle liquids without damaging effects.

Does the Neato XV 21 come with a remote control?

NO. All functions are accessible through the machine panel. It does not come with a remote, nor can it be remotely controlled- manual access on the robot is necessary

Will the Neato get caught on curtains that are floor length?

No. It does well with obstacles and there is no mention in customer testimonies of any issues with curtains.

The Upside of Using the Neato XV 21

  • Runs quieter than other Neato models
  • Design is bright and uniquely appealing
  • Mid-grade price for a dated bot from 2012
  • Does work efficient to reduce allergens and pet hair
  • Has powerful suction and does suck up filth effectively
  • Cleaning pattern is ‘smart’ and structured

The Downside of the Neato Robotics XV 21

  • Does not come with a remote
  • Not very durable lasts about a year before Bot is unusable
  • Trash bin continually pops up and does not stay in place
  • Sends errors and shuts off after 5 minutes of use in some case
  • Battery longevity is very bad
  • Does not boast the bells and whistles of current models on the market

Neato Robotics – Company Profile & Info

neato_robotics_xv_21_introThe company that manufactures the Neato vacuum bots is Neato Robotics which is located in Newark, California. It operates all its business from there but contracts parts and assembles them in China to spare consumer cost. It first was established in 2005, but did not introduce its XV models until 2010.

As of currently, the Neato Company has released 7 bot models of its Neato XV, and one that is called Botvac that was introduced in 2014. Since their development Neato robot vacuums have been sold to millions of homes all over the world. It continues to be a well-known brand for its cost-effective, quality, and unique designs of cleaning vacuum bots.

Our Final Sentiments: Neato XV-21

The Neato XV-21 offers the user an affordable option when it comes to owning a robotic vacuum to lessen the hassles of manually cleaning floor spaces. It contended when it was released with models such as the Roomba 650, however these days it can be considered as a dinosaur.

Although it is a decent robotic vacuum for the price, a consumer should absolutely consider its vast amount of problems with the trash bin popping up and whether or not a short battery life is something worth sparing a few dimes on. Additionally, if you are seeking a luxury vacuum and want something worth every penny- keep in mind the Roomba 880 and its durability, performance, and viable reputation.

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