On this page, you will learn about the differences between ScoopFree vs LitterMaid self-cleaning litter boxes. These machines are very similar in basic functionality. However, the differences in the way they work and clean will have a big impact on operating costs and performance. Continue reading below to find out which of these self-cleaning litter boxes is right for you.
ScoopFree – Click here to check the price
LitterMaid – Click here to check the price
ScoopFree vs LitterMaid: Which of these automatic litter boxes is right for you …?
The PetSafe ScoopFree is larger and therefore more spacious than the Broad Spectrum LitterMaid. Although smaller in design, the LitterMaid is larger than the ScoopFree. In between, the ScoopFree litter box is heavier.
The ScoopFree Litter Box is available in two colors: white and purple or white and taupe. The LitterMaid is available in white or sage.
Both automatic litter boxes use the rake cleaning style. Here, a rake is designed into the system for cleaning purposes. For the ScoopFree, the rake goes through the litter box and collects the solid waste left by the cat, then deposits it in the disposable bin. On the other hand, the LitterMaid Rake and Litter System is designed to collect all waste (solid and liquid) and deposit it in a receptacle for disposal.
The rake system comes with an automatic timer. For the ScoopFree, 20 minutes after the cat leaves the box, the rake starts its cleaning cycle. The cleaning cycle is always started 20 minutes after the box is empty, no more no less. However, if during the cleaning cycle the cat enters the box, a sensor is activated and cleaning is put on hold until the cat leaves the box. The same goes for the LitterMaid, but with a shorter waiting period of around 10 minutes.
Some users have complained that the nature of this timer makes it virtually impossible for these litter boxes to adequately respond to multiple throws. There are other complaints about the LitterMaid’s rake system with accusations centered on the rake itself. A decent number of customers claim that the clods of trash usually stick to the rake, requiring manual removal of the clods from the rake by the users themselves.
Type of litter
PetSafe’s ScoopFree uses crystal litter while the LitterMaid uses clumping litter. ScoopFree crystals act as a urine absorbent. They are blue in color when fresh and turn yellow or green when soiled. As a result, they must be continually replaced. LitterMaid’s clumping litter, on the other hand, does not need to be completely replaced; just filled when the litter level gets low.
Several users have complained that ScoopFree’s litter “absorbent” powers weren’t evident, as their litter boxes frequently let urine escape onto their floors. Others have claimed that the litter box absorbs urine well as long as a single cat uses the box, underscoring the general consensus that the ScoopFree box cannot accommodate multiple cats.
The ScoopFree comes with its own disposable litter box. The bin can collect waste for 2-3 weeks before it needs to be discarded and replaced. The disposal process is very simple and quite hygienic: all you have to do is take the box out of the litter box, cover it with the provided lid and throw everything in the trash. Then a replacement box can be placed in the litter box and used for the next 2-3 weeks. Replacement trays are not cheap at all, however. More than a few users are of the opinion that this automatic self-cleaning litter box is definitely not economical. Others even claim that the trays did not last for the 2-3 weeks advertised by the manufacturer, with some users getting rid of their trays after a few days. The general consensus was that the more your cat uses the box, the less each tray lasts and the more money you spend to buy replacement trays.
The refill trays are available in several versions: the unscented version, the lavender scented version and the recycled version.
Unlike the ScoopFree which uses disposable trays, the LitterMaid uses a closed container. As the rake travels through the clumping litter, the solid waste is collected and deposited in the closed receptacle. Once full, the receptacle can be removed via easily accessible buttons, waste removed and the receptacle returned to the litter box. Several users have recommended that the receptacle be lined with bags to extend the life of the receptacle.
However, the receptacle is not able to store longer like the disposable trays of the ScoopFree and therefore users must empty it quite frequently. Some customers have expressed dissatisfaction with LitterMaid’s low storage capability.
Click here for more details on PetSafe ScoopFree
Click here for more details on the LitterMaid
The ScoopFree’s blue crystal litter absorbs urine and in so doing eliminates any odor. Both litter boxes are designed with activated carbon filters which are also effective in removing odors.
The LitterMaid is designed with a ramp. Several users claim that this allows older cats to easily access the litter box. The ramp has a cleaning pad to prevent your cats from following the litter box around the house. It also comes with walls taller than the ScoopFree. These high walls keep litter or trash from flying into the room in case your cat wants to dig before or after defecating.
The ScoopFree is available in two versions: the hooded version and the hoodless version. The hooded version comes with an “optional” privacy hood. If your cat likes privacy while doing their business, the hooded version of ScoopFree is just what you need. But if he hates hoods, then the ScoopFree’s privacy hood is a big no-no. The ScoopFree Litter Box is also designed with a health meter that tracks how many times your cat visits the box during a given period and helps identify possible issues with your cat.
Power and engine
They both come with an AC adapter for connecting to a power outlet. The LitterMaid can also be operated on batteries. The batteries serve as a backup in the event of a power failure.
The ScoopFree has a more powerful and durable motor, which makes its rake cleaning system more efficient and effective than LitterMaid’s. Some users claim the LitterMaid’s motor is quite weak and barely durable, with reports of the litter box failing after a year. However, the more powerful motor of the ScoopFree makes it much louder than the LitterMaid.
Pros and Cons of ScoopFree
- Powerful motor
- More durable than the LitterMaid
- Comes with an optional privacy hood
- Has absorbent crystal litter
- More efficient cleaning system
- Not so economical
- Some problems to accommodate several cats
Advantages and disadvantages of the LitterMaid
- Cheaper than the ScoopFree
- Tall wall design to prevent the spread of waste
- Ramp for easy access
- Can run on batteries
- The engine is not that strong
- A number of sustainability complaints
- Some problems to accommodate several cats
Click here to view ScoopFree reviews and ratings
Click here to see the LitterMaid reviews and ratings
Summary and recommendation
If I chose between the ScoopFree and the LitterMaid, I would definitely go with the ScoopFree. Considering durability, price, and performance, I think the ScoopFree is the better choice despite being more expensive at list price (although you never know what a sale might do for price). I think the ScoopFree will last longer and have better overall performance.
Are you looking for pet clippers? Check out this article: Oster A5 vs A6