Hi, I thought I'd give you some feedback on CatGenies. I have 8 cats and own 3 of the original model of the CatGenies and I can't say enough good things about them!
We purchased the 1st one in June, 2008. We purchased one with the sidewalls and hood because my boy cat likes to get in a litter box and stick his butt out and poop on the floor. We were SO impressed we bought 2 more and now have one on each level of our house (2 in bathrooms, 1 in laundry room). We run each 1-2 times a day, or extra depending on the cats. They all took to it quickly.
Customer service is AWESOME! Whenever we've had a question, or anything went wrong (rare) they were very quick to solve the problem and send any needed parts to us fast.
Here are a few tips to help you:
-Make sure you have extra cartridges handy. The CatGenie will start beeping (one beep) when you have 10 washes left. It will beep twice when the cartridge is completely empty. So if you forget to order more, you will have time to rush a shipment if needed.
-Should you get an error beep (3 beeps) the problem is almost always the water sensor. This is a plastic piece that looks like a wishbone that you can remove easily. You only need to wash the tip of it and put it back. They're also cheap (if not free) to replace should you need to.
-Sometimes (not often) you will get a smell (referred to as the "burnt brownie" smell) after the drying cycle. This happens if small pieces of poop that are too small for the scooper to catch are dried with the litter. It's not that bad (especially if you use the scented cartridges) and goes away quickly.
-I HIGHLY recommend getting something to catch the granules when your cat(s) steps out of the CatGenie. Since they don't absorb liquid, you can collect some of what comes out of the CatGenie and reuse it to save a bit of money. I use something I think is called Kitty Trax, they're 12x12 trays with a removable grid. They lock together so you can set them up different ways, but you can use anything you like.
I have had the most sensitive people who either don't like cats or animals in general come to my house, and every one said they couldn't smell a thing! My mother is the biggest complainer of cat smells, and she stayed with me for a week and said she never smelled anything cat related (believe me, she'd tell me if there was any smell!)
The CatGenie will pay for itself within a year. Having the supplies sent directly to your home is an added bonus. I think this is the best product out there, I would be able to have 8 cats without them.