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Wondering if the PetSafe ScoopFree self-cleaning litter box could be the convenient litter box solution you’ve been waiting for?
After testing this litter box for over a month, we’re sharing our thoughts on this litter box’s performance and whether or not it’s a good choice.
This automatic litter box combines the intense adsorbency of silica gel litter with a simple raking mechanism to, well, free you from the chore of scooping.
The litter stays dry for up to a month, while the automatic scooping system keeps solid waste locked away in a separate compartment. By sensing your cat’s presence in the litter box and automatically sending a rake across the tray, the litter box stays clean on its own.
- Ease of Cleaning – 8/10
- Odor Control – 7/10
- Appearance – 9/10
- Construction – 10/10
- Price – 6/10
Overall Score: 8/10
PetSafe ScoopFree YouTube Video Review
Here’s My Experience Using The Petsafe Scoopfree Self-cleaning Litter Box:
I ordered the PetSafe ScoopFree original box—the base model, which doesn’t include any snazzy bells and whistles like a hood, use counter, or adjustable delay timers—and had it shipped to my house. Once it had arrived, it was time to set things up and get started.
First, I Assembled The Litter Box
The PetSafe ScoopFree comes with a disposable litter tray, raking mechanism, AC adapter, 10-foot power cord, and enough litter to fill the box.
The ScoopFree litter box comes packed with everything you need to get started.
I pulled out the main plastic body of the litter box, which forms the sides of the box and includes its automatic raking mechanism, the AC adapter and 10-foot power cable, a cardboard litter tray, and a bag of silica gel crystal litter.
The Assembly Is Easy To Put Together
The first step is putting the litter into the cardboard tray. You’ll place the lid underneath the tray, making it more robust and stable, then open up the bag of litter and pour it in.
The cardboard tray is equipped with a waste trap, which is where solid waste gets locked away after the rake moves across the litter bed. When I added litter to the box, I also put a small amount in the waste trap to help keep things dry and eliminate odors.
The waste trap of the disposable litter tray attaches to the plastic door with magnets, allowing it to automatically rise up during operation.
Once you’re done adding litter, you’ll place the raking mechanism over the tray. Magnets under the purple waste trap door attach to the cardboard flap, allowing the section to lift up when the unit is in action.
Once The Litter Box Was Assembled, It Was Time To Start Using It
The litter box worked smoothly and, for the couple of months that I’ve been using it, hasn’t jammed or malfunctioned once.
Again, the ScoopFree uses a cat sensor to detect the presence of a cat in the box. After a 20-minute delay, the rake starts humming its way across the litter bed, distributing urine and sweeping stool into the waste trap.
If your cat re-enters the box during the delay period, the box will reset for another 20-minute delay, helping to keep your cat safe.
With so many other automatic litter boxes noisy and jam-prone, the ScoopFree is refreshingly quiet and consistent. Each cycle takes just over a minute and doesn’t make a lot of noise.
Aside from a quiet whirr as it runs, the ScoopFree clunks a little bit as the waste trap opens and closes, but that noise is almost imperceptible.Between the lack of maintenance and minimal noise, I almost forgot that the ScoopFree was running in the house at all.
How Well Does It Control Odors And How Long Does It Last?
Because the ScoopFree litter box uses silica gel litter, it’s good at dehydrating both feces and urine. The waste trap did an excellent job of holding fecal odor, but the raking mechanism didn’t catch every little particle.
Fortunately, silica gel litter holds odor quite well and fecal odors weren’t an issue for the bulk of the testing period.
But unfortunately, ScoopFree litter reaches its saturation threshold—and starts reeking—a lot sooner than the box suggests.
The litter box stayed dry for between a week and 9 days between my two cats—it certainly didn’t make it to the 10-15 days promised by PetSafe. By the one-week mark, the litter started smelling rank and, after 9 days, I noticed some saturation on the bottom of the tray.
After about 9 days, it was time to throw away the disposable tray and dirty litter.
Throwing the litter away was easy. I lifted the raking unit off the tray, carefully moved the bottom tray out from underneath, and placed it over the top.
What Does The Tracking And Scatter Situation Look Like?
The relatively large granules of litter seem to resist tracking and the scatter situation was extremely good. I think this was my favorite thing about the ScoopFree box.
Compared to other litter boxes, including the ultra-expensive Litter-Robot III, this box did an incredibly good job of keeping litter contained. I rarely had to sweep around the litter box and the area seemed cleaner than ever before.
What Did The Cats Think?
My cats quickly started using the ScoopFree self-cleaning litter box and seemed to feel comfortable with it.
My cats had no problems using the box, taking to it right away. I don’t think they had an issue with the litter, though it is on the coarser side and might irritate some cats.
They also seemed comfortable with the size of the box, although technically, it’s not a ton of space for a cat. The litter box has a big footprint, measuring 27” x 19” x 7”, but it doesn’t have a large usable litter surface area. The section your cat uses measures 14” x 14”, so it’s significantly smaller than I’d recommend for most cats.
It’s also important to note that the litter tray is pretty shallow and your cat doesn’t have a lot of room to dig, so this might not be the most satisfying choice for cats who like to go deep in their litter box.
How Much Does The Scoopfree Litter Box Cost?
If you choose the original version, like I did, your upfront cost will be between $99.95—if you act fast and catch it on sale—and $149.99.
If you upgrade to the ScoopFree Ultra, which features a hood, a health counter, and adjustable cleaning cycle times, that price might go up as high as $199.95. There’s also a top-entry version of the ScoopFree Ultra available at the same price.
While the ScoopFree litter box costs more than your typical litter box upfront, that’s not really the place where it’s going to cost you a lot of money.
Instead, the expense of the ScoopFree litter box lies in the replacement litter trays. If you’re accustomed to lower-cost clay litter, replacement trays could look pretty expensive over time.
If you can get 30 days out of each tray, the pre-filled disposable litter trays cost about $15 per month for one cat. Realistically, though, you’re probably going to replace the tray once every 20 days, bringing your monthly cost-per-cat closer to $20. If you have two wet-fed cats like I do and find yourself changing the litter 4 times a month, your expense could go all the way up to $60 per month.
If that sounds expensive to you, you might want to invest $50 in ScoopFree’s plastic reusable tray instead of using the pre-filled disposable ones, which could cut your monthly costs down by as much as $6 per cat.
Overall, Is The Petsafe Scoopfree Self-Cleaning Litter Box Worth It?
The PetSafe ScoopFree automatic litter box is one of the most reliable automatic litter boxes you can buy.
It does a great job of combining the low-maintenance adsorption power of silica gel with a raking mechanism to give you a simple, hands-off litter cleaning solution. The litter itself is low-dust, offers good odor control, and doesn’t stick to cat’s paws.
But between the more frequent tray changes and increased price, I’m not sure that the PetSafe ScoopFree is worth it for homes with two or more cats. Multi-cat homes may want to opt for the Litter Robot or another reliable self-cleaning box.