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The Best Self-Cleaning Litter Boxes

279photo Studio/Shutterstock.com
🕚 Updated February 2023

Cats are tidy creatures who take care of their business in solitude, but it's up to you to clean up after them---which stinks figuratively and literally. Try out a self-cleaning litter box to lessen the hassle and mess.

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  Best Overall Best for Multiple Cats Best Premium Best for Budget Best Lidless
  Omega Paw
Elite Self-Cleaning Litter Box
Self-Cleaning Cat Litter Box
Litter Robot 3 Core Bundle
Omega Paw
Large Roll 'n Clean Self-Cleaning Litter Box
ScoopFree Self-Cleaning Cat Litter Box
Our SummaryThis self-cleaning litter box requires a couple of manual rolls over, but it handles the rest really well.An LED-illuminating self-cleaning litter box that sterilizes, then rakes rather than rotates waste.A globe-shaped litter box that automatically sifts the dirty from the clean and takes orders from you via the Robot 3 app.This litter box is self-cleaning and has built-in litter steps to catch scatter.This smooth-operating open-air self-cleaning litter box gently combs through crystal litter and deposits waste in a retractable tray.
Pros✓ Easy to operate
✓ Simply roll it 360 degrees
✓ Interior grill sifts out debris
✓ Remove through pull-out drawer
✓ Extra-large
✓ Sensor-activated
✓ Rake-like cleaner
✓ Deposits into trash bag lined tray
✓ 20-minute UV sterilization
✓ Extra-large
✓ Futuristic-look
✓ Simple base and rotating globe design
✓ Automated cleaning
✓ Whisker app
✓ Affordable
✓ Simple design
✓ Roll to clean
✓ Built-in litter steps
✓ Open design
✓ Built-in sensors
✓ Fine-tooth metal cleaner
✓ Disposable waste tray
Cons✗ Doesn't reduce odors
✗ Sifting holes can clog
✗ Overall design and materials could be better
✗ Challenging set up
✗ Pricey
✗ Not a thorough clean
✗ Cat must weight 5 or more pounds
✗ So large it's hard to find a place for it
✗ Extremely expensive
✗ Not 100% thorough
✗ Materials and design seem cheap
✗ PetSafe ScoopFree Premium Crystal Litter only
✗ Expensive disposable trays
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How Did We Research?

22 Models Evaluated

8 Hours Researched

46 Reviews Analyzed

The Best Self-Cleaning Litter Boxes

Cat inside of litter box.
279photo Studio/Shutterstock.com

Buying Guide for Self-Cleaning Litter Boxes

A cat sitting inside of a litter box.

Why buy a self-cleaning litter box?

If you’ve had one or more cats for any length of time, you’re well-acquainted with the no-fun task of scooping smelly poop and urine daily. Who wants to do that? Sometimes, you may forget. No shame here. But if your cat produces a lot of waste, or if you have two or more cats, you can’t afford to let it slip. It’s a bad situation for everyone, most of all your cats. A self-cleaning litter box provides a novel solution to this predicament and typically comes with nice bells and whistles.

What should you look for in a self-cleaning litter box?

  • Design: Many popular self-cleaning litter boxes are enclosed and round. The litter sits at the bottom like conventional boxes. But when the device rotates, the internal self-cleaning mechanisms sift the waste from the clean cat litter and deposit it in a closing tray or drawer. Some are automated, while others require manual rotation. If you want to go all-out for the most modern designs, there are Wi-Fi-enabled litter boxes with apps to activate a clean cycle, track usage, and more.
  • Disposal: The waste still needs to make it to the garbage can. Some models utilize removable tray liner bags, and drawers, while others feature a disposable tray. Which is better? It depends mainly on what appeals to you.
  • Bonus Features: We review a round contraption with interior sensors that activate built-in LED lights to signal your cat’s movements as they go in and out. There’s also a 20-minute UV-sterilizing phase to kill harmful bacteria and viruses. The feature that’s most beneficial to most people is an accompanying app that allows you to operate remotely, check stats, and so on.

Do the best self-cleaning litter boxes eliminate all maintenance?

Unfortunately, no. Even the most advanced models require maintenance, like thoroughly cleaning all their components. It’s not so different from our lavatories. Sure, we get to flush our waste away, but we must clean the toilet bowl regularly. It’s important to know, too, that these self-cleaning machines are not 100% comprehensive with every use. Occasionally, waste will stick to the wall or floor of the litter box, and you’ll have to put in some elbow grease.

Our Picks for the Best Self-Cleaning Litter Boxes

Best Overall

Omega Paw Elite Self-Cleaning Litter Box

This self-cleaning litter box requires a couple of manual rolls over, but it handles the rest really well.

Pros: The Omega Paw Elite litter box features a straightforward design and operation to remove waste without getting up and close to clean it. There’s a top, bottom, filter, and waste container. Once you’ve assembled it, filled it with clumping litter to the marked line, and your cat has done its thing, roll the Omega Paw over 360 degrees a couple of times. The interior grill, or screen, sifts the litter and catches the waste, depositing it in the pull-out drawer.

Cons: The contraption doesn’t reduce odors, possibly because the sifting holes can clog, and there are no anti-microbial features. Some say that the overall quality of the product, both material, and design, could be better.

Bottom Line: The Omega Paw Elite litter box is a decent option for a budget-friendly, low-maintenance self-cleaning litter box. It could be better, but it gets the job done.


Best for Multiple Cats

Hillpig Self-Cleaning Cat Litter Box

An LED-illuminating self-cleaning litter box that sterilizes, then rakes rather than rotates waste.

Pros: This extra-large sensor-activated litter box tackles the smelly, sticky stuff straight on. These sensors track your cat’s use of the box and prevent your cat from entering during cleaning cycles. Where other models feature a rotatable sifter, the Hillpig uses a rake-like device that scoops the poop when the door closes, depositing it straight into the trash bag-lined waste bin. It features a bacteria-zapping UV sterilization period that spans 20 minutes after your cat exits and the door has closed. As your cat walks out, they cross a grated doorstep that catches debris. The smart sensors sync data to your phone, allowing you to track its times of use and litter capacity so you monitor their health status at all times.

Cons: It may be challenging to set up, as the videos and instructions are not as thorough as they could be. The Hillpig is pricey and perhaps not worth the investment if you expect it to clean 100% of the waste each cycle.

Bottom Line: The unique nonrotating design of the Hillpig sets it apart from most self-cleaning litter boxes. While no data is available on the efficacy of the UV sterilization feature, the blue-purple LED signaling the process is working seems quite convincing.


Best Premium

Whisker Litter Robot 3 Core Bundle

A globe-shaped litter box that automatically sifts the dirty from the clean and takes orders from you via the Robot 3 app.

Pros: The futuristic-looking Litter Robot measures nearly 2.5 feet, just over 2 feet wide, and 2 feet deep and comprises two pieces—the base and rotating inner globe. The rubber-lined globe features sensors that your cat will trigger. When they exit the robot, the inner globe rotates, sifting the clean litter from the clumped waste, then deposits the trash in the plastic bag-lined, carbon-filtered drawer of the base. The Whisker app tells you when the litter box is full, tracks the number of times it cycles daily, and even graphs the information to monitor medical issues like UTIs. Use the app to start a new cycle or use the buttons on the litter box.

Cons: To use the Litter Robot, your cat needs to be over 5 pounds to trigger the sensors. Because the unit is large, it may be hard to find a good place for it. Also, the product is quite pricey.

Bottom Line: The pre-assembled, Wi-Fi-enabled Litter Robot has the potential to make life easier for you and your felines. Given the price and size, it’s probably best for a house with more than one cat. 


Best for Budget

Omega Paw Large Roll 'n Clean Self-Cleaning Litter Box

This litter box is self-cleaning and has built-in litter steps to catch scatter.

Pros: This might be the only self-cleaning cat litter box that protects your cat’s view of the world around them. The built-in sensors activate when your cat comes and goes, starting the cleaning process only when your cat is safely out. The fine-tooth metal rake combs through the litter, gathering dirty debris, then deposits the waste under a tray that automatically lifts and closes. The PetSafe ScoopFree litter box must be cleaned an average of once per month, depending on your cat’s needs. When it’s time, just remove the tray and throw it away.

Cons: You can only use PetSafe ScoopFree Premium Crystal Litter, which can be limiting. Also, the costs add up pretty quickly. The litter box comes with one disposable tray, but after that, you need to buy them. 

Bottom Line: The open-air design makes a more enjoyable visit to the litter box. Your cat deserves to take care of nature in the fresh air, and you deserve the ease and odor-free operation the PetSafe promises.

Final Thoughts

When shopping for a new litter box, it is important to consider numerous factors, like the size of your cat and its preferences for a covered or uncovered box. From standard boxes and litter scoops to self-cleaning litter boxes, there is an option for every cat out there.

Britta Kallevang Britta Kallevang
Britta is a professional writing tutor and freelance writer that is trained in journalistic, technical, and creative copywriting. At LifeSavvy, she researches products, writes about the items, and shares what she's uncovered with readers. Her writing is comprehensive and sometimes a bit silly. Read Full Bio »
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