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PetSafe ScoopFree Self Cleaning Litter Box Review

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Mallory Crusta / Cats.com

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.

Also Read: 10 Things You Should Know Before Buying an Automatic Litter Box

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. Mallory Crusta / Cats.com

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. Mallory Crusta / Cats.com

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. Mallory Crusta / Cats.com

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. Mallory Crusta / Cats.com

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.

Also Read: Litter-Robot vs ScoopFree Review – Purchased And Tested

Want To Try The Petsafe Scoopfree For Yourself?

About Mallory Crusta

Mallory is an NAVC-certified Pet Nutrition Coach. Having produced and managed multimedia content across several pet-related domains, Mallory is dedicated to ensuring that the information on Cats.com is accurate, clear, and engaging. When she’s not reviewing pet products or editing content, Mallory enjoys skiing, hiking, and trying out new recipes in the kitchen. She has two cats, Wessie and Forest.

31 thoughts on “PetSafe ScoopFree Self Cleaning Litter Box Review”

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  1. Amanda G King

    I have a one year old cat and a 5 month old kitten. The cat refuses to use tge Scoopfree and poops on my carpet instead. I also have a traditional box right next to it and every now and then she still poops on floor. How can I get her to use the Scoopfree box?

    1. Mallory Crusta Post author

      Hello Amanda, that’s a great question. Are you using a ScoopFree with or without a lid? The uncovered version should be just as appealing and cat-friendly as any ordinary litter box, so the issue could be that your cat is uncomfortable with the ScoopFree crystals. You might try investing in one of the reusable trays and filling it with a finer-grained crystal litter. You can even try it with a clumping clay, though you’ll probably have some sticking and the waste receptacle will fill up much more quickly.

  2. Louise

    This was a great article for all of us cat lovers to read. It was very thorough and went into a lot of detail. I have a few things I’d like to add about my experience with the PetSafe ScoopFree. I have two cats and the PetSafe is the first automatic litter box we ever tried. After doing tons of research and reading reviews like this, it’s the one we picked.

    I agree with this review in that the assembly was fairly easy. I was worried about that at first, but it ended up being fairly easy. I also really like the silica gel litter that you use. To me, it smells much better than the regular type of litter. BUT I also agree that once it reaches saturation level, it doesn’t mask the odor well anymore. I guess this can be expected.

    For us, it just didn’t quite work as well as we expected it too. Don’t get me wrong, it pretty much did what it was supposed to do, but sometimes it had a hard time keeping up with two cats. For us, the tray filled quickly and we had to change it often. This wasn’t too hard though. That was actually probably one of my favorite parts about the PetSafe.

    I would also agree that the tracking was okay. Our cats didn’t seem to track litter out of it much. Eventually though, this cat box gave out on us and it was time to get a new one. We again, did a ton of research as we wanted to see if the PetSafe was still the best on the market. After much deliberation, we decided to go with the ChillX AutoEgg for our next auto litter box.

    I have to say, I’m very glad we went with it instead of the PetSafe. It has a modern and sleek design. It takes up very little room in our house. You can’t even really tell it’s a litter box at all. It was great for our two cats. The rake is super powerful and cleans very well. The Auto Egg is very sensitive and picks up every little piece of waste the cats leave behind. This plus the design keeps the smell virtually undetectable, which is my favorite part.

    Overall, I think this is a pretty accurate review of the PetSafe ScoopFree. Very on par. It has some good attributes and some not so good attributes. If you are weighing all your options for automatic cat litter boxes, I highly suggest taking a look at the ChillX AutoEgg and at least comparing it to the PetSafe. I think you will find that it has more bang for the buck and your cat babies will most likely love it like mine do! Does anyone else out there reading this have the AutoEgg? I’d love to hear from other owners and see what their experience is like. I don’t think I’m the only one who has had an egg-cellent experience with it! Haha!

    1. Louise

      Hey Mallory! Thanks so much for replying to my comment! I’m glad to hear you are going to do a review of the ChillX! It’s such a great product. We are very pleased with ours and glad that the word is starting to spread about it! Looking forward to the review! Thanks again!

    1. Sandra Villalobos

      JaCey, I actually read a review on Amazon where someone just said they bought the reusable bottom and then use only clay clumping litter instead of the crystals. So, I decided to try it (altho’ with the disposable tray). It was a spectacular disaster. The try is not deep enough to hold as much clumping litter as is needed for it to clump correctly. The rake got all goobered up with a crap/urine/clay pate, and the smell was worse than a regular box. I tried to make things better by adding some of the crystals, but that just just made it a crap/urine/litter/crystal pate (prettier, but still super gross). My advice; don’t do it…

    2. Elle

      I actually had a very different experience after finding that same Amazon review. I used Arm + Hammer Slide litter with the Forever Tray and it worked wonderfully. All clumps have been successfully raked into the trap and then I just pull off the trap and scoop the clumps into the trash. I will say that it seems like the urination tendencies of your cat makes a difference. I have two 6.5lb cats who pee in relatively small amounts fairly frequently, and the box works great for me. A friend of mine has a 17lb cat and an 8lb cat and apparently the box could not handle the clumps from the larger cat. She gifted it to her brother, who has a 14lb cat, and he is apparently very happy with it. It’s definitely a bit of a trial process for if clumping litter will work for you

  3. Sandra Villalobos

    I bought the Scoop Free about a month ago, in a desperate attempt to get my elderly (M 16-17 yo) Maine Coon to stop pooping and peeing on the couch. It seemed that the reason he was doing it (as far as I could speculate – I mean, he’s a cat who the heck knows why they do anything they do?) was because the box was not clean enough for his highness. I have two cats (both > 10 yo) and I was cleaning the box twice a day (sometimes even more often). It has saved my sanity – even though he has an occasional slip-up, both cats are using the box without any issues. I have another box outside (in a screened porch), with clumping litter, but they are mostly using the automatic one. The disposable trays last about 10 days with my two cats. I am planning to get the reusable tray eventually. One note – I mix the litter around in the box every day, and if it looks like it’s getting saturated (usually around day 7), I add a cup of some generic Walmart crystal litter to the mix. This makes the tray last longer.

    1. Kate Barrington

      Jumping in here, Nick. Yes, you should be able to use a different type of non-clumping crystal cat litter. The tricky thing is making sure you use one of the ScoopFree reusable trays so the raking feature works properly to sweep the waste all the way into the waste compartment.

  4. Keith

    Is the silicon gel litter biodegradable? How about the disposable tray? I don’t want to get products that are bad for the environment.

    1. Mallory Crusta Post author

      Hi Keith! While it’s always difficult to figure out the environmental impact of any product from harvest to disposal, silica gel litter is not necessarily better than clay. It’s not biodegradable as it’s in its final state, and the process that’s used to manufacture it is fairly resource-intensive. As for the disposable trays, they have plastic liners that make them non-biodegradable.

  5. Barbara

    I saw the review you did on YouTube numerous times before finally obtaining one from a friend. My cat with Cerebellar Hypoplasia loves this system. We have three cats total but we do use 4 litterboxes total , one being the scoopfree system. I don’t know if it’s the crystals or the ease of access my CH cat loves about it. I plan on purchasing a bag of crystal litter to test it out in a different litter box to know for sure.

  6. Stephanie Llanos

    I had the same experience. I loved it it was great by now my two 6months old kitties are going through a tray weekly! And just like u said anything over a week starts getting horribly smelling to the point my cats won’t use it and will pee on the side of I don’t change it in time. Cuz of this I’m now considering switching to the litter robot! Just trying to get the hubby onboard

  7. Tracey Page

    I sadly became a single cat household just before I purchased the scoop free. My girl doesn’t like dirty litter and will poop on the ground if the litter is too dirty for her. I haven’t had a single “accident” since we started to use it. It is now 21 days since installation and I am yet to detect a scent coming from it. I only wish it had a scent sucker, as poop still stinks for the time waiting for the rake to engage. I have noticed some discolouration of the silica crystals from the urine. Having the counter has made me realise how little my cat uses the toilet. As I said, 21 days and the litter has been raked 19 times. The biggest downfall on the counter was when it got to 3 and I was wondering what the error was. *facepalm* All in all I think it is so much better than the traditional box and clay litter. I was using a 50L plastic container to try and keep the litter inside the box, but I still ended up with litter all over the place. I have yet had to sweep up due to there being litter all over the floor and from my seat here I can see 4 bits of litter on the floor. I’m so happy that I made this purchase. At the time of the purchase there was a deal going for replacement litter and trays. So I still have 6 litter trays in reserve. Depending on how long it is until I need to replace my tray I could have litter for a minimum of half the year. I am planning on getting another cat later in the year, so at that time I will purchase another tray. I always have a tray per cat.

  8. shirley

    I find there is way too much litter tracking. I love that I’m not inhaling the dust anymore from the traditional litter. But I am constantly vacuuming the tracked litter. Any recommendations?

  9. Paula Robinson

    We LOVE the scoopfree litter box, but it has suddenly stopped working! No light, no scoop, no nothing!
    Is there an option of returning it for repair or re-conditioning?

  10. Judy

    A cousin gifted me with the PetSafe litter box for my 2 cats (Sophie weighs 14#; Pangur Ban around 10#). When only Sophie was using it, the litter lasted for quite some time. Pangur would stand before PetSafe and watch it rake the litter but would not use it for the first month. I had kept one of the ordinary litter boxes because I was unsure of how long they each would take to begin using a new box with a different type litter. Here I want to mention that for a few years I used Petco’s grass seed brand litter. It does track but is easy to vacuum up, clumps well and is great with odor control. I had 2 ordinary litter boxes and scooped at least 2x daily and refreshed the litter with 2-3 cups of fresh every other day or so. The 26# litter pkg cost, delivered, about $27. It always lasted at least a month or longer with good clumping and odor control.
    The PetSafe lasts, at best 10 days, and that is with scooping out the very wet crystals. I even went to the expense of buying the plastic tray at around $60. It’s a mess to clean! Living life with 2 dogs + 2 cats, I have a very strong stomach (adamant about picking up my dogs’ poop when we do our 3x/day walks). But cleaning out that plastic tray full of cat poop and the litter stuck to the tray itself was too much! I got a special deal from Petco buying 3 replaceable cardboard trays w/litter. As soon as I have used them all, I’m advertising this PetSafe unit w/plastic tray FREE on Neighborhood. It’s too costly and much less environmentally friendly. Wishing I had saved my 2nd ordinary cat box but will replace and return to using my tried/true Petco So Phfresh Litter. With inflation out the roof, it’s more affordable. BTW, I’ve recommended this letter to friends and they agree about its qualities. My son and his family have 2 cats and use the Modkat Flip Litter Box with So Phfresh litter and love it!

  11. Kerwin Maude

    Our family purchased this item with the privacy hood and it is not cheap nor their replacement disposable silica gel trays. Previously we tried kitty litter and fine (cheap) sand and cloaked odors with sprinkled baking soda but the smell was lasting. A relative bought the same product before us for their kitten, and soon we did similar. We had the machine for about three weeks, and the counter claims it has been raked 117 times which is lives short of its claims . I like the technology and features, but the trays should last 1 month not less. There is no fuss in daily scooping up excrements, and the jury is out in deliberation but it seems like a good buy. What impact does it have on the environment is unknown, and time will tell.

  12. Mark Broadus

    I started using the ScoopFree system just 45 days ago and am ready to give up on it already. With two cats, it hits urine saturation after 9 days, and needs the poop cleaned out of it after 2 days — if you don’t do that, you get a hard-to-clean mess on the rake. When compared to a traditional, less expensive clumping cat litter, ScoopFree has made my life more complicated, and it creates more landfill. However, what it has made me do is go off looking for a good biogradable option. I’d love to hear your recommendations on that.

    1. Mallory Crusta Post author

      Hey Mark, I’ve had a similar experience with the PetSafe ScoopFree, so I can appreciate your frustration. My favorite biodegradable litter is Pioneer Pet’s SmartCat litter, and Sustainably Yours is also a great option. Check ’em out!

  13. Cindy Fleet

    I have ordered this pet litter system from Amazon and will be setting it up tomorrow. I have 2 cats that I want to try it out on. I actually, don’t mind scooping their litter boxes out several times a day. I am getting the automated litter box to strictly use when I go out of town for 4-5 days. I’m hoping it will work out so I won’t have to rely on someone else cleaning the box while I’m away. I have had the Pet Safe auto pet feeder for 6 years (I’m on my one) and I like that product alot!