If you’re like me, scooping up a cat’s litter box waste probably falls low on your list of enjoyable responsibilities as a fur parent. The creation of a fully automatic litter box, the Litter-Robot, should come as a big relief.
However, as with everything that’s automated, it isn’t impossible to run into some technical problems. In this article, we’re going to tackle what the Litter-Robot’s yellow light flashing means, as well as some of the other lights you may see on your machine.
The short answer is that the yellow light flashing can mean three things: your cat entered the Litter-Robot mid-cycle, the bonnet was removed, or the Anti-Pinch Sensors were activated.
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Litter Robot Yellow Light Flashing: A Closer Look
Okay, but how do you know which one of the reasons listed above is your Litter-Robot’s current issue? First, you have to take a closer look at the way the machine’s yellow light is flashing.
A slow flashing yellow light—around one flash of light per second—ultimately means that something interrupted the cleaning cycle. This could be due to two things: a cat entered and the Litter-Robot’s Cat Sensor got activated mid-cycle, or the machine’s bonnet has been removed.
To find out which of these is the issue, first, check if your cat is inside the Globe. If it is, you don’t have to worry. The Cat Sensor protects your cat and will pause the cleaning cycle.
Once your cat leaves, the Litter-Robot should go back to running the usual cleaning cycle after a few minutes.
If there’s no cat in sight, check the machine’s bonnet tabs on each side and make sure that none of them came loose. Secure the bonnet and check if the cycle resumes afterward.
The yellow light could also flash rapidly—around four flashes of light per second. This means that your Litter-Robot’s Anti-Pinch Sensors are activated.
These Anti-Pinch Sensors are part of the machine’s built-in safety features that ensure no cats are harmed during cycling. When the sensors are activated, the cycle pauses, and the yellow light flashes rapidly until resolved.
The solution for this is to turn off your Litter-Robot and check for any possible “pinch conditions,” such as objects or clumps stuck in the Waste Port. Then, turn the machine on again and press the Reset button.
Aside from yellow, the Litter-Robot sports two more colored lights: blue and red. Below we’ll see what they mean and what you should do when they also start flashing.
Generally, a solid blue light means that your Litter-Robot is currently on standby. This means it’s ready for use and currently has no issues whatsoever. A flashing blue light, however, signals that the Waste Drawer is full and requires changing.
Simply empty the Waste Drawer and replace the soiled liner bag with a fresh one. Then, press the Reset button. This should leave you with a solid blue light once again. The manufacturer recommends that you run a cycle or two after changing liners.
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If the blue light is still flashing even after installing fresh liners, you can try to locate the Drawer Full indicators in the Waste Drawer and wipe it clean. Litter dust can sometimes mess with the sensors, so make sure you do this regularly too.
It’s also possible that sensors get a little faulty over time. When this happens, you’ll have to email manufacturers for recalibration of the sensors.
A solid red light, on the other hand, means that the Litter-Robot’s Cat Sensor activated while the machine was on standby. When your cat leaves the Globe, the machine will count down and then start a cleaning cycle.
The countdown or Wait Time upon your cat’s exit is set at 7 minutes by default. You can change this depending on your need by pressing and holding the Empty button until you enter the settings for Wait Time.
A flashing red light occurs when the Cat Sensor has been activated for more than 2 minutes. This is either because your cat won’t leave the Globe or there’s excess weight on your Litter-Robot.
If the problem is the latter, make sure you refill your machine with the right amount of litter and that your Waste Drawer isn’t too stuffed. Once you’ve checked these off, press the Reset button to reboot your Cat Sensors.
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The colored lights can also flash sequentially or simultaneously. These flashing patterns are usually indicators of an underlying issue. They notify you that something is wrong, and you need to look into the problem or contact the manufacturer.
The yellow and red lights may flash sequentially, and this signals a motor obstruction. To resolve this, turn off and unplug your Litter-Robot first. Then, disassemble and check for any blockages on the gears and motors.
The lights may also flash from left to right or in a red-yellow-blue pattern. This indicates that your Litter-Robot can’t locate the Dump position.
Flashing from right to left or in a blue-yellow-red pattern, on the other hand, means that the machine can’t locate the Home position this time. This usually happens when you disassemble your machine, and its axes are all messed up.
This problem could also be due to an electrical problem. For all instances of persistent sequential flashing despite troubleshooting efforts, you have to contact the manufacturer for further help and instructions.
A solid blue and yellow light may flash and remain illuminated simultaneously. This indicates that your Litter-Robot has entered its 8-Hour Sleep Mode. To deactivate this, just press and hold the Cycle button and the machine will be ready once again.
However, the simultaneous flashing of all colored lights is a big problem. The issue can be traced to several factors, such as faulty sensors, defective motors, and sometimes even a damaged power supply.
Note that your Litter-Robot won’t cycle at all if the three lights are flashing simultaneously. It’s hard to troubleshoot this on your own, which means you have to contact your manufacturer for further instructions.