The Tineco S5 Pro Mops and Vacuums at the Same Time, but It Ain’t Cheap

The Tineco S5 Pro Mops and Vacuums at the Same Time, but It Ain’t Cheap
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I’ve never liked mopping. Frankly, if I can get away with another week of leaving it at just a thorough vacuum, I’ll take it. Every time. But since my Dyson died, even vacuuming has become a pain in the ass. So when I was offered the opportunity to review a cleaner that mops and vacuums at the same time, I obviously jumped at it.

The Tineco S5 Pro is the cleaner in question; a cordless, self-cleaning unit that vacuums and mops simultaneously. Of course, the convenience of a machine that knocks over two household jobs in one go comes at a pretty penny (the RRP is $999), so the biggest question you’ll probably grapple with is whether or not it’s worth it. The answer will likely hinge on how you define convenience.

The S5 Pro pulls out all the stops. Along with the features mentioned above, it also has an animated display screen, smart sensor technology, a smartphone app and a 30% larger clean water tank, compared to the previous version, which translates to a longer period of uninterrupted cleaning.

The unit comes with a number of parts which are easily detached for cleaning — an essential part of every use. There’s the aforementioned clean water tank, a dirty water tank, a dry filter, a debris catcher and of course, the brush roller. In the box, you also get some cleaning solution, an extra brush roller, an extra filter and a charging base with attachments that allow you to store the roller and an included cleaning brush on either side.

In terms of putting it all together, it’s super easy. Everything locks together with a satisfying click and filling the clean water tank is just a matter of pouring in a cap’s worth of the cleaning solution and topping it up with water. Once everything’s in place, it’ll launch straight into auto-cleaning mode the moment you press the power button.

What’s the Tineco S5 Pro like to use?

What I noticed immediately after turning on the S5 Pro was the self-drive propelling it forward, making it pretty much effortless to push. The pull-back motion, however, isn’t assisted. Overall, the basic operation of the unit is fairly pleasant.

I really feel like you can throw pretty much anything at the S5 Pro. Whether it’s a literal pile of dirt or a puddle of spilled juice, it has no problems sucking it all up and cleaning the floor underneath it in a couple of passes.

It’s important to note, however, that it’s not going to work any miracles. The patch of caked-on grime that’s been stuck to your floor for three days is still going to require the old kneel-down-and-scratch job, but I’d wager you’d struggle with something that stubborn when mopping the old-fashioned way, as well. That said, I’ve still been impressed with how much it’s actually capable of lifting, even if it does take five or more passes to get the really stubborn bits.

Unlike mopping the traditional way, the S5 Pro doesn’t leave a lot of water behind, so the time it takes to dry is minimal in comparison and leaves floors streak-free.

While it does have a very handy self-cleaning cycle that gives the roller a pretty good scrub, the unit does require some maintenance after every use. The most important is emptying the dirty water tank, for obvious reasons. Once you detach it, it’s simply a matter of taking off the lid, pouring it down the sink and chucking any debris caught by the catcher into the bin. However, you’re going to want to give the tank and all the parts of it a decent scrub and dry before you put them back together unless you want to wonder what that weird smell is a few days later. Trust me, you do not want to do that.

The results of a 10-minute clean.

This struck me as an inconvenience at first, but when you compare it to the process of vacuuming, then filling a bucket with warm soapy water, then mopping the floor, and so on, you’re still saving a good chunk of time.

When you put the S5 Pro on the charging base, it will quite literally tell you — out loud, with a voice — what needs to be done. It’ll tell you to run a self-cleaning cycle if the roller is dirty, if the dirty water tank needs emptying or if the clean water tank needs re-filling. It’ll also let you know if any of these things need to be done while in use.

Running the self-cleaning cycle.

If you’re extra obsessed with knowing the state of your vacuum at all times, there’s also an app that allows you to check in on its status and switch between the various cleaning modes, although the latter is much easier to do with the buttons on the vacuum while its in use. It’s a neat app but it doesn’t add a lot to the overall experience.

The display screen is, without a doubt, very fancy, but it also didn’t change the experience of cleaning in any drastic way. Its most useful feature is tied into the iLoop Smart Sensor, which will automatically adjust suction power, roller speed and water flow based on the mess you’re dealing with. The ring on the screen will turn red when this happens and you’ll basically hear the whole thing kick into overdrive. A lot of the time, I can’t actually tell if it’s being triggered because of a greater deal of grime on a patch of floor or if it’s simply mistaking a certain colour in the tiles as a mess. Once the sensor is happy that you’ve dealt with the problem area, it’ll return to its standard cleaning mode.

The S5 Pro isn’t exactly whisper-quiet, but it’s by far the quietest vacuum I’ve ever used. The Tineco website puts the sound output at around 78dB or less. I used a free smartphone app to measure this for myself — not the most scientific measure, but you make do with what you got — and it generally hung around the 75dB mark on auto mode.

Note: the max reading in the top left corner was my toddler yelling “helping” and not the actual vacuum.

How long can it clean for?

In terms of runtime, Tineco promises up to 35 minutes of use before you need to chuck it back on the charging dock. I’m able to get through my entire two-bedroom apartment in just under an entire charge, which checks out with Tineco’s promise of 130 square metres of cleaning coverage per charge.

A cap’s worth of the included cleaning solution is enough for one fill of the clean water tank. Whether this will last you a full charge or not will depend on the setting you use to clean and how dirty your floor is. Running it on max will chew through battery and clean water faster than auto mode, and if auto mode is sensing that your floor is a filthy mess and adjusts the suction power and water flow accordingly, you might find the same issue. It’s not a big deal, though. Taking a beat to refill the clean water tank only takes a minute or so.

Assuming the cap is about 30ml in capacity, the 1L bottle should last you around 34 full tanks, so mileage from a single bottle will depend on the size of your home. For me, it’s roughly one full house clean per tank, of which I’d do maybe 1.5 per week. So it shakes out to about 26 weeks per bottle. What I’m getting at here is that the thought of having to buy a new bottle of cleaning solution isn’t so bad if you only have to do it twice a year. They retail for around $25, or you can get them as part of an accessory kit for $50, which also contains a new roller brush and filter.

Should you buy it?

Overall, I really like the S5 Pro. It turns two dull jobs into one I can knock over fairly quickly and easily, which is by far its biggest advantage. The biggest shortfall, however, is that this doesn’t quite replace the need for a standard vacuum cleaner. The S5 Pro has a hard time getting into tricky tight spots, for one, but the maintenance required after every use also means it’s not the most convenient option for a quick spot clean. When you just wanna clean up a few crumbs, having to empty and clean the dirty water tank makes the job more annoying than it needs to be.

And hey, this isn’t that big a deal. It can be fairly easily resolved by a cheap stick or handheld vac. But when you’re considering dropping $999 on an appliance, this level of convenience absolutely comes into play. Whether you have a mix of carpeted and hard floors will also factor into the decision. The S5 Pro does have a suction-only mode, but you’d still be running a wet roller over your carpet, which is no bueno.

Personally, as someone with an entirely hard-floored apartment, a messy toddler, a dwindling supply of free time and a disdain for housework, it’s absolutely worth the price tag.

Where can you buy the Tineco S5 Pro?

eBay ($999) | Godfreys ($999)

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At Lifehacker, we independently select and write about stuff we love and think you'll like too. We have affiliate and advertising partnerships, which means we may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page. BTW – prices are accurate and items in stock at the time of posting.


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