5 Best Robotic Pool Cleaners – Our Top Picks and Buying Guide

Last Updated on June 6, 2021

Keeping your pool clean is a very time-intensive and laborious job. You can easily spend hours each week struggling with pool vacuums and hoses trying to keep the pool clear of debris and dirt.

Robotic pool cleaners have been a great invention for pool owners. The first robotic pool cleaners were invented in the 1990’s and they have improved drastically since then. If you are shopping for a new pool cleaner then we can help you find the best robotic pool cleaner for the money.

Keep reading to find out about the advantages and disadvantages of various types of pool cleaners as well as the best robotic pool cleaners and why they do the best job at cleaning your pool.

Here are some important aspects to keep in mind when shopping:

  • Ease of use
  • Reliability
  • Weight
  • Efficiency
  • Size of your pool
  • Extra features

Here Are The Best Robotic Pool Cleaners We Recommend

Best Overall
Dolphin Premier Robotic Pool Cleaner
Best For Inground Pools
Polaris F9550 Sport Robotic In-Ground Pool Cleaner
Best Value
PAXCESS Cordless Robotic Pool Cleaner - Wall-Climbing Function with Smart Route Plan, Automatic Pool Vacuum, Max Surface Cleaning & Powerful Suction, MAX 90 mins, for 1614 sq ft in/Above Ground Pools
Dolphin Premier Robotic Pool Cleaner
Polaris F9550 Sport Robotic In-Ground Pool Cleaner
PAXCESS Cordless Robotic Pool Cleaner - Wall-Climbing Function with Smart Route Plan, Automatic Pool Vacuum, Max Surface Cleaning & Powerful Suction, MAX 90 mins, for 1614 sq ft in/Above Ground Pools
Ideal for pools up to 50 feet long
Ideal for pools up to 60 feet long
Ideal for pools up to 1614 sq ft
Weighs 22 lbs
Weighs 21 lbs
Weighs 12 lbs
Best Overall
Dolphin Premier Robotic Pool Cleaner
Dolphin Premier Robotic Pool Cleaner
Ideal for pools up to 50 feet long
Weighs 22 lbs
Best For Inground Pools
Polaris F9550 Sport Robotic In-Ground Pool Cleaner
Polaris F9550 Sport Robotic In-Ground Pool Cleaner
Ideal for pools up to 60 feet long
Weighs 21 lbs
Best Value
PAXCESS Cordless Robotic Pool Cleaner - Wall-Climbing Function with Smart Route Plan, Automatic Pool Vacuum, Max Surface Cleaning & Powerful Suction, MAX 90 mins, for 1614 sq ft in/Above Ground Pools
PAXCESS Cordless Robotic Pool Cleaner - Wall-Climbing Function with Smart Route Plan, Automatic Pool Vacuum, Max Surface Cleaning & Powerful Suction, MAX 90 mins, for 1614 sq ft in/Above Ground Pools
Ideal for pools up to 1614 sq ft
Weighs 12 lbs

Various Types Of Pool Cleaners

Manual Pool Cleaners

The least expensive yet most labor-intensive pool cleaner is the manual pool cleaner. With this type of pool cleaner, you must connect the suction hose to the pool skimmer so the waste gets carried through the hose to the waste area. You must also use the long hose of the cleaner to physically push the water vacuum around the floor and walls of the pool until everything is clean.

Pressure-Side Pool Cleaners

Pressure-side cleaners are a step above the manual cleaners because they are automatic. Another benefit to these cleaners above manual cleaners is the collection of debris doesn’t happen in your pool filter but rather a filter bag on the cleaner itself. These pool cleaners are great with larger debris and do a decent job with smaller debris as well.

Suction-Side Pool Cleaners

Some people prefer a suction-side pool cleaner rather than a pressure-side pool cleaner because of the rate at which it cleans your pool. It will move around your pool on the ground and walls to move debris into your pools’ filter system. While it does a decent job at cleaning, suction-side pool cleaners require your pool’s pump and filter system to make it work, which means just like a manual cleaner, your pool’s filter will be collecting the debris which you might not like.

Robotic Pool Cleaners

The favorite pool cleaner among pool owners is the robotic pool cleaner. With robotic pool cleaners, you get a fully self-contained unit which means no need to use your pool’s pump or filter system for collecting debris. After using their low-voltage plug to connect to an outlet, it becomes push-button simple. Robotic pool cleaners use their motor for the wheels and movement around the pool, their pump for lifting large and small debris from the floor and walls, and their filter for containment of debris. If you want an easy and complete way of cleaning your pool, a robotic pool cleaner is the way to go.

Does It Make Sense To Purchase A Robotic Pool Cleaner?

Robotic pool cleaners are cool but are they worth it? If you’re trying to make sense of purchasing a robotic pool cleaner, think about the following advantages.

Self-contained system: Robotic pool cleaners are completely self-contained and don’t require your pools skimmer, pump, or filter for operation.

Plug-and-play: These cleaners are simple to use. Just plug it into an outlet and press a button. Your pool will be clean with no additional work.

Money savings: Although robotic pool cleaners are more expensive than most other pool cleaners, you will save money in the long run. Many don’t realize how much money other pool cleaners cost until their energy bill comes in. Robotic pool cleaners will cost an average of 5 cents per hour to operate which makes a huge difference.

Energy efficiency: Robotic pool cleaners are up to 90% more energy-efficient, which not only saves you money but also puts no additional load on your pool’s system.

Easy maintenance: After your robot cleans your pool, just remove the filter and wash it out with a hose. Snap it back in and it’s ready for the next cleaning.

Calculate How Much Is It To Maintain A Pool: The Average Pool Maintenance Cost

The maintenance cost of your swimming pool can easily increase without having the right tools to use, so it will be much better if you invest in those early on.

Factors To Consider With Robotic Pool Cleaners

Ease of use: Some robotic pool cleaners are easier to use than others. When thinking about purchasing a pool cleaner, take into consideration how easy it will be to operate. Every robotic pool cleaner should be easier to operate than other pool cleaners, but remember that some are easier to use than others.

Reliability: Take into consideration how reliable each robotic pool cleaner brand is. No one wants to spend money to make pool cleaning easier if it doesn’t work every time. Get a robotic pool cleaner that is reliable enough to work for many pool seasons.

Weight: Some robotic pool cleaners are extremely heavy. Luckily, with the constant improvements made in the pool cleaning industry each year, you will find robotic cleaners to be lighter while still producing the same high-quality cleaning work. If you’re going to go for a heavy robot, make sure you are going to be able to lift it out of the pool.

Efficiency: As with any industry, some products and brands are going to be more efficient than others. Will your robotic pool cleaner be able to clean all the walls of your pool? Does your pool have stairs that you want to be cleaned as well? Some robotic pool cleaners do a great job of cleaning an area once and not going through it again.

Length and Depth Of Pool: Consider the size of your pool, both length and depth. Certain sizes and specific robotic pool cleaners will only be able to handle so much. There are varieties with every brand, so make sure you get a cleaner that is going to be able to reach every corner of your pool with ease.

Extra Features: Some robotic pool cleaners have extremely worthwhile features like remote controls, scheduling, and Bluetooth capabilities. Some don’t need the extra features, but for those of us who like the additional perks, you can find them in many robotic pool cleaners.

5 Best Robotic Pool Cleaners

You’ve made a great decision in choosing to purchase a robotic pool cleaner. But with all the different pool cleaners on the market, which one is best for you? We’ve narrowed it down to these choices that work great for various sizes of pools. Take a look at each of these choices and based on the size of your pool and the features you’re looking for, we’re sure one of these options will work perfectly for you. 

Dolphin Nautilus CC

DOLPHIN Nautilus CC Robotic Pool [Vacuum] Cleaner - Ideal for Above/In Ground Swimming Pools up to 33 Feet - Powerful Suction to Pick up Small Debris - Easy to Clean Top Load Filter Basket
  • Sit back and relax while the Dolphin Nautilus CC robotic vacuum cleans the pool for you. Ideal for small swimming pools, above or in-ground up to 33 feet. This easy to use, compact cleaner will have...
  • Efficiency is key when it comes to pool cleaning. Unlike suction and pressure cleaners, Dolphins are 8x more energy efficient and do not rely on your pool pump or filter to get the job done. Ditch the...
  • Dolphin does all the hard work for you. Agile and efficient, the Nautilus CC was designed to clean your pool, effortlessly. With superior scrubbing and filtering capabilities, you can relax knowing...
  • Clean your pool with the touch of a button. Schedule the Nautilus CC to automatically clean your swimming pool each week using 3 settings- every day, every other day, or every 3rd day.

The Dolphin Nautilus CC automatic robotic pool cleaner is an easy-to-use, lightweight, single-button operation robotic pool cleaner that is sure to wow you.

  • Ideal for pools up to 33 feet long
  • Weighs 13.8 pounds
  • Schedule your cleaning times with 3 settings
  • Consistent active brushing collects large debris and scrubs the debris you don’t see
  • Quick payback on investment with 8X less energy consumption than other pool cleaners
  • It comes with a 1-year warranty

What Real World Users Say…

“This unit is perfect for my 20×40 pool.”

“The pool is crystal clean all the time. No more nagging from the wife to clean the pool.”

“We’ve had this a week. So far so great! Picks up small rocks & the finest dirt.”

Dolphin Nautilus CC PLUS

Dolphin Nautilus CC Plus Robotic Pool [Vacuum] Cleaner - Ideal for In Ground Swimming Pools up to 50 Feet - Powerful Suction to Pick up Small Debris - Easy to Clean Top Load Filter Cartridges
  • Hello, free time! Let the Dolphin Nautilus CC Plus robotic vacuum cleaner take over your pool cleaning duties for good. Easy to use and ideal for in-ground swimming pools up to 50 feet, this cleaner...
  • The clean you need without the hassle. The Nautilus CC Plus was designed to clean your pool, effortlessly. With dual scrubbing brushes and superior filtering capabilities, you can relax knowing your...
  • Ditch the pumps and hose. Unlike the energy hogs that are pressure and suction cleaners, Dolphins are independent cleaning machines and do not rely on any additional equipment to get the job done....
  • Clean your pool with the touch of a button. Schedule the Nautilus CC Plus to clean your swimming pool each week using 3 settings- every day, every other day, or every 3rd day. Pool cleaning has never...

The Dolphin Nautilus CC Plus automatic robotic pool cleaner is a step above its predecessor. It’s larger and can handle the bigger jobs, and comes with some nice features as well.

  • Ideal for pools up to 50 feet long
  • Weighs 19 pounds
  • Schedule your cleaning times with 3 settings
  • Dual scrubbing brushes for large and small debris
  • Large top-load cartridge filters for complete cleaning within 2 hours
  • “CleverClean” algorithm for smart and efficient navigational cleaning
  • Anti-tangle swivel cable for ease of movement around your pool
  • The same 8X less energy consumption saves you energy and money
  • It comes with a 2.5-year warranty

What Real World Users Say…

“Outstanding robotic inground pool cleaner.

“It’s a powerful scrubber cleaner that pretty much does what it’s advertised to do.”

“Life-changing purchase after cleaning manually for years. 2 years old and going strong.

Best Overall: Dolphin Premier Robotic Pool Cleaner

Dolphin Premier Robotic Pool Cleaner
  • Smart Nav scans the pool shape and calculates the optimal path for faster, more efficient cleaning
  • HyperGrip dual tracks for 40% less slippage while climbing walls and stairs
  • Power scrubs and vacuums doors, steps, walls, and water line
  • Reduces energy costs up to 90% (5 per hour) over AC-powered cleaners by running on DC motors

The Dolphin Premier robotic pool cleaner is superior compared to other machines on this list when it comes to its features and abilities. It has been deemed by many as the “best pool cleaner on the market”. Check out the features of this robotic pool cleaner.

  • Ideal for pools up to 50 feet long
  • Weighs 22 pounds
  • Schedule your cleaning at your desired interval with Smart Control
  • Dual scrubbing brushes with dual 24-volt motors clean and scrubs every inch of floor, wall, tile, and waterline
  • Includes micro-cartridges, standard cartridges, and oversized leaf and debris bags
  • It comes with Smart Nav software that uses advanced algorithms for optimized scanning and full coverage cleaning
  • Anti-tangle swivel cable for ease of movement around your pool
  • 90% less energy gives you better energy efficiency and saves you money
  • A full media indicator light lets you know when it’s time to empty the filter
  • You can optionally use the Dolphin remote for the advanced cleaning of specific pool areas you want to focus more on
  • It comes with a 3-year warranty

What Real World Users Say…

“Their best robotic pool cleaner in the market.

“It is an investment but well worth the money spent and cleaning time eliminated to have a spotless pool.”

“The answer to all things pool! I was really worried about purchasing this because it seems so expensive, but trust me, it is worth every last penny.”

Best Value: PAXCESS Cordless 8600 Robotic Pool Cleaner

On Sale Now!
PAXCESS Cordless Robotic Pool Cleaner - Wall-Climbing Function with Smart Route Plan, Automatic Pool Vacuum, Max Surface Cleaning & Powerful Suction, MAX 90 mins, for 1614 sq ft in/Above Ground Pools
  • 【Cordless & Wall Climbing Function】Global premier cordless wall-climbing automatic pool cleaner. PAXCESS robot pool vacuum equipped with the advanced brush, which can provide a strong adsorption...
  • 【Excellent Cleaning Performance】PAXCESS cordless robotic pool cleaner is the most innovative pool robot cleaner.It can clean inground pools/above ground pools for Max.1614 sq ft. Put aside the...
  • 【Comprehensive & Efficient Cleaning】The pre-installed smart gyroscope, accelerometer and advanced three-axis motor provide strong suction and efficient cleaning to achieve complete cleaning...
  • 【Intelligent Detection Technology】With advanced detection technology, PAXCESS cordless pool cleaner can detect different working situation by itself and these working situations will be displayed...

With a preinstalled smart gyroscope, accelerometer, and advanced three-axis motor this clever device will ensure your pool is cleaned using the most efficient route. The PAXCESS Cordless Robotic Pool Cleaner is perfect for people who don’t want to spend their valuable time cleaning the swimming pool by hand because this robot will do it all on its own.

  • 8600 mAh Lithium Battery
  • 1614 square feet maximum cleaning surface
  • Up to 90 minutes of working time
  • Has twin extra-large top access filter baskets
  • Comes with a 2-year warranty

What Real World Users Say…

“Super easy to use & set up. Does a good job!”

“If you want more time enjoying your pool this year than cleaning it, this is a must!”

“Highly recommend this pool cleaner if you want to air back and let it clean the pool for you!”

Best For Inground Pools: Polaris F9550 Sport Robotic In-Ground Pool Cleaner

On Sale Now!
Polaris F9550 Sport Robotic In-Ground Pool Cleaner
  • 4-wheel drive robotic cleaner outfitted with Aqua-Trax tires for all pool surfaces
  • ActivMotion Sensor Technology for unmatchable navigation, even in larger and free-from pools
  • Vortex Vacuum Technology allows cleaner to pick up larger debris while maintaining maximum suction
  • Rear water propulsion system allows cleaner to reach debris under stairs and in tight corners

The Polaris F9550 Sport Robotic In-Ground Pool Cleaner has a range of features that make it the perfect choice for any pool owner. One of its distinct advantages is the 7-day programmable timer which allows you to set it and forget it.

  • Motion-sensing remote control
  • Easy lift system
  • 7-day programmable timer
  • 4 Wheel Drive (4WD) technology
  • Easy to clean filter canister
  • Works on pools up to 60 feet long
  • ActivMotion Sensor Technology
  • Comes with a 2-year warranty.

What Real World Users Say…

Unbelievable pool cleaner.

The cleaning algorithm is superior as it covers the whole pool reliably.”

“The entire robot and cabling fit nicely on the compact carriage with wheels. This thing is a must.”

Whichever robotic pool cleaner you decide to purchase, one thing is for certain: Robotic pool cleaners save you money, energy, and time. Whether you opt for the cleaner with more features or the lighter weight options, you can be certain of an efficient clean without having to spend any extra time or effort cleaning the pool yourself. Look at this as an investment that will pay itself back in time, and enjoy your robotic pool cleaner.

Frequently Asked Questions About Robotic Pool Cleaners

Are robotic pool cleaners worth it?

Yes, they are worth it. Robotic pool cleaners can effectively clean your pool better than any other type of pool cleaner out there. The best thing about robotic pool cleaners is they can do the cleaning automatically and saves you the time you need to spend manually cleaning your pool.

How long do robotic pool cleaners last?

Robotic pool cleaners have a lifespan of about 4 to 5 years depending on the brand and how well you take care of your equipment. Cheaper models typically have a shorter lifespan of about 3 years.

How often should I run my robotic pool cleaner?

The answer to this question heavily depends on how much you use your swimming pool. You can run your robotic pool cleaner daily if you use your pool every day. If you’re only using it once or twice a week, you can just run your robotic pool cleaner once weekly or every two weeks.

Photo by Martin Cooper Ipswich best robotic pool cleaners

Didn’t Find The Robotic Pool Cleaner You Were Looking For?

YouTube video
Shade Ideas for Your Pool

Can we feature your pool on this site?

We are always working on new content here at OwnThePool.com and we love to feature pictures of our readers' pools! We're always looking for:

  • Pool Design & Landscaping Ideas
  • Backyard Oasis
  • Shade Ideas

Send to publisher@ownthepool.com

Leave a Comment