Last Updated on July 7, 2021 by Jenny
The Litter Robot 3 is already a clever product, working as a self-cleaning automatic litter box that can make your life easier – no more scooping, you just need to empty the waste disposal drawer once it’s filled up.
However it’s not the “smartest” (when we speak of “smart technology”) model available – that’d be a Litter Robot 3 Connect, which you can control and monitor wirelessly. But if you already have a Litter Robot 3, you don’t actually need to completely replace it. You can buy an upgrade kit and convert your existing robot into a Connect model.
It does involve a little bit of basic electrical work, but don’t worry. With my video and the steps below, I’ll show you that it’s not something to be intimidated by. The steps are relatively simple as long as you take your time and follow each instruction carefully.
Before you know it, you’ll be able to keep track of the waste drawer from your phone, so you’ll never forget to empty it. You can also see when your cat is using the Litter Robot, which can help if their behavior changes, although it can’t differentiate between multiple cats.
Just make sure you’re using either an Apple device with iOS 10.0 or later, or an Android device with Android 8.0 or later.
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How to upgrade the Litter-Robot 3 to Connect:
Follow these steps to upgrade your Litter Robot to a Connect model. Your upgrade kit should include a new circuit board, a new applique (the cover for the buttons), and a new serial code with a QR code attached, that you’ll need when you download the app and set up the WiFi connection.
For the installation you’ll need some needle-nose pliers, and either a flathead screwdriver or a blade – anything that can help to loosen and remove the old applique.
1 – Switch off the Litter Robot using the Power button, and then unplug it from the wall. You’ll then want to remove the power supply plug from the unit itself, as well as the bonnet and globe, leaving just the base for you to work with.
2 – Carefully remove the old blue applique using your screwdriver or blade. Use your tool to get underneath the applique and lift it away from the unit. Once it’s removed, replace it with the new black one that came included with the upgrade kit.
3 – Next you need to open the control panel. Start by removing the waste drawer from the unit so that it doesn’t get in the way. Then remove the five screws covering the control panel. The circuit board inside is attached to the buttons and so may not come loose – just push the buttons in as you pull the cover away and it will come loose.
4 – The circuit board can then be disconnected. There are three wires to remove – make sure that you grab them from the base, and don’t tug on the wires themselves or you could damage the connectors. Make sure the wires are left resting, as you’ll need to grab them soon to reconnect them. Use the pliers to grab the connector here if you need to.
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5 – The circuit board is mounted to the rubber keypad – just peel them apart, and then set the old circuit board out of the way. The circuit boards look the same, so make sure the old one is moved away so you don’t get confused and accidentally install the same one again.
6 – Time to install the new circuit board. Start by sliding it into the lip on the rubber keypad. Make sure the lip fully covers the sides, and then poke through the rubber pins that are lined up with the holes on the circuit board to keep it in place.
7 – Reconnect the wires. There’s a 4-pin connector, a 6-pin connector and an 8-pin connector, so it’s easy to match them up to the right slot if you’re paying attention. Once the wires are in place, you can attach the circuit board and buttons to the circuit board cover, making sure the buttons line up with the holes on the applique.
WARNING – Before you reattach the circuit cover, check that the position sensor is in place. It’s a small black item with two prongs that are connected to the wires you’ve plugged back into the circuit board. If you watch the video you’ll see that I didn’t realize this had fallen out, and it stopped the Litter-Robot from working properly when I had put it all back together.
This needs to be added to the two holes to the left of the motor. The group of wires with a yellow wire needs to be on the left, with the orange wire on the right side.
If the position sensor is knocked out of place and you don’t put it back into place, your Litter-Robot won’t work, and you’ll get three flashing lights to let you know there’s a problem.
8 – Reattach the circuit board cover, tightening all five screws. You can then remove the sticker from the back of the unit with the old serial number, replacing it with the new one. The app won’t work with the old serial number so make sure you do this step.
Purchase Connect Upgrade Kit.
How to connect to the Litter-Robot App:
Once you’ve switched the Litter Robot on again, it’ll complete its initial clean cycle. You can then connect it to the app.
1 – Check your WiFi password and make a note if you need to – you’ll need it for the setup. If your WiFi connectivity isn’t great, consider moving it closer to your router for setup.
2 – Download the AutoPets Connect app from either the Google Play Store on your Android device or the AppStore on your Apple device.
3 – Open the app and follow the instructions. You’ll need the new serial number of your Litter Robot Connect (although it has a QR code, so you can scan that instead of manually typing it out) and your WiFi password to get your Litter Robot online.
And that’s it – once you’ve followed the steps, you’ll be able to use the app to keep tabs on your Litter Robot. You can download the app on as many devices as you want too, so your family can add it to their phones if you want to share the responsibility of cleaning out the waste bin.
Purchase Connect Upgrade Kit.
Does this affect the warranty?
If you decide to upgrade your Litter Robot 3, you might be concerned about voiding your warranty if something goes wrong.
However, because the process is straightforward, the Litter Robot company has said that you won’t void either your 18-month Full Warranty or your Extended Warranty if you install the upgrade kit.
So if you do decide to upgrade and then something goes wrong with your Litter-Robot, you’ll still be able to get it repaired or replaced.
Purchase Connect Upgrade Kit.
Litter Robot 3 Troubleshooting: All Lights Flashing After Installing Connect Kit
Have you upgraded your Litter Robot to a Connect model? Leave a comment if you like automatic self-cleaning litter boxes or if you’ve any experiences of tinkering with your cat’s litter box to improve it.