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  • Writer's pictureRay Campbell

I Tested And Ranked The Best Robotic Pool Cleaners In 2024

Keeping your pool crystal clear and free of debris is actually easy with the right robotic pool cleaner. It will regularly take care of your pool maintenance, while saving you time and money.

best robotic pool cleaners

FYI, prices and ratings are accurate as of time of writing.


1. Dolphin Premier - Most Powerful Robotic Pool Cleaner


best robotic pool cleaners

Highlight: Dual-scrubbing brushes clean the pool floor, walls and waterline in less than 3 hours.

Helpful review: "It took me about two weeks of searching Amazon and Youtube before I ended up going with the Dolphin Premier cleaner. Yeah, I admit, I shelled out a couple extra bucks for this one, and let me tell you why. There’s a three-year warranty, which trust me, is always a plus with any product. But then there’s the fact that it can clean the walls of my pool. Oh, and this pool cleaner was made in Israel, a company known for innovative products built with integrity. If I’m going to spend my money somewhere, I want to know I’m getting my money's worth.
It's been three months now and I can say for certain that the Premier is still performing great. My pool is nine feet deep with a 16 by 32 vinyl liner. Not to mention the deep end with the safety ledge about 3 feet deep on all three sides. In other words, I need a product that’s going to get in those hard to reach places.
I no longer need to use my cleaning hose, and I’ve officially retired my pole. Here’s to never using them again. Instead, I use the Premier two, maybe three times a week. Pretty much whenever it needs it. And let me tell you: my pool is sparkling.
I’ve collected some pros and cons on the product below.
PROS:
The Premier has three filter elements, which is honestly great. During the hot, summer months, I use the super fine filters, and when the trees start to drift down in the Fall, I plan to switch to the bag. Trust me, the ultra fine filter gets even the tiniest specks of dirt.
Overall, it’s really easy to set up and put together. It runs for two hours, which is more than enough time to clean my pools. And once I’m done, I just grab my hose and spray the filters down.
The fact that the Premier crawls and cleans the walls is just awesome. It also cleans up the water line, which is an extra perk. Sometimes it struggles to get up the ledge in the deep part of the pool, but it won’t stop trying to climb that ledge until it gets up the wall. The fact that it actually cleans my pool walls is definitely my favorite part. From experience, cheaper products get half way up before sliding back down and then giving up all together. Its ability to do this is definitely the main reason I bought this product.
CONS:
Sometimes it can get stuck in the drain in the deep end, but after a while it eventually removes itself. It mainly happened when the center of the unit is on top of the drain and the outside part of it can’t reach the pool floor for the traction it needs to keep moving. Sometimes it can get stuck at the bottom of the ladder and just sit there, which is kind of annoying. There’s also a yellow light that comes on when the product is full of debris, but sometimes it flicks on too often, even when it’s not full, and I think it’s kind of pointless. Regardless, these are really minor problems at the end of the day and don’t take away my love for this baby.
I do highly recommend buying the Dolphing caddy for the cleaner. I do have to warn you—it’s a bit overpriced, however it’s well-built and honestly, you really need it. The cleaner itself is kinda heavy, and while the control cable didn’t bother me, it is long, so you have to make sure it doesn’t get tangled on the caddy when you store it. I just tie it up with a Velcro wrap and that works fine. My biggest complaint? I think the caddy should be included with the cleaner like other competitors offer. Overall, I’m pleased with my purchase of the Premier and can rest assured that my pool will stay clean for many years to come." — Gregory Mark

Get it from Amazon now: $1,497.00 & FREE Returns

 

2. AIPER Seagull Pro - Best Cordless Pool Cleaner


best robotic pool cleaners

Highlight: No hose means no clutter cord… means no hassle!

Helpful review: "My pool is an above ground vinyl and when I say lead and debris falls to the bottom, that’s an understatement. After years of jumping into the pool and kicking all that grossness up my feet before having to use a pool net to scoop it up, it was time for another solution. Enter the AIPER Seagull Pro, a cordless pool vacuum sent from Heaven.
- Right out the box, the first charge took under three hours.
- When the product is charged the LED flips from red to green so I never have to wonder if it's ready.
- The set up was super easy. The silicone scrapers used to collect the debris snap into place without effort and same goes for the plastic handle.
- The screws to attach the handle came with the product and I didn’t even need a screwdriver to connect it.
- I also had no trouble turning the on and off button either.
- After dropping the cleaner back into the pool, I pressed the power button and then dropped it. It had no problem staying upright as it went down to the bottom of the pool, and then, like magic, it took only a few seconds to get to work!
- The suction seriously surprised me. I watched in awe as the dead insects, grim, and broken pieces of leaves vanished right before me.
I did have to empty it out every five minutes or so, but keep in mind that my pool was borderline disgusting and way overdue for a cleaning. It was also really easy to take it out of the pool. I just used the hook at the end of my pool pole. Fair warning, though, make sure you turn the cleaner off before taking it out of water otherwise you’re definitely going to get soaked. I learned that the hard way. Also, if you keep it level as you bring it out of the pool it will stop debris from falling out of the suction port.
It took a little bit of effort to use the four snap closures, but on that note, the product as a whole is sturdy, and yet really easy to clean up.
There’s a tiny mesh filter on top of the section that collects debris and it does a really good job at trapping all those fine particles. I was honestly really impressed by the power behind this, and yet it was gentle too. It didn’t snag on my pool’s vinyl, and if it tried to climb up the sides it only went a small distance before correcting itself. I really couldn’t be more pleased with this awesome little piece of equipment. It really did an incredible job of cleaning my pool clean.
After that first big clean, this thing became my best friend when it came to maintenance. Now I use it every few days and believe it or not I only have to empty it out after the battery dies, which is about an hour—and more than enough time to clean my whole pool when I use it regularly." — Ardena Kirk

Get it from Amazon now: $749.99 & FREE Returns

 

3. Dolphin Nautilus CC Plus - Efficient 2-Hour Cycle


best robotic pool cleaners

Highlight: Cleans in-ground pools up to 50 feet in less than 2 hours.

Helpful review: "This was a good lesson in ignoring negative reviews, especiallyI when they’re outnumbered by positive ones. I almost didn’t buy it because of the few bad ones, but after seeing that those were dated a few years earlier, I figured that most of the issues had been hammered out, and boy was I right. I’m so glad I bought this cleaner.
When you live in Arizona like I do, you’re bound to get a whole ton of rocks, sand, and dirt in your pool.
I used to spend so much time scrubbing the pool, only for a small fraction of the debris to disappear. At a certain point, it just wasn’t worth my time. I also kept getting sunburnt and now that the Dolphin Nautilus does the hard work for me, I don’t have to worry about that.
At one point I was paying a pool cleaner, but they were doing such a bad job keeping the water chemistry stable. Although I saved money by doing it on my own, it didn’t take me long to realize that when it comes to pool maintenance—especially when it comes to scrubbing the pool--it’s worth it to invest in an efficient time saving product.
The first time I used it, this robot ran for two hours and did more than I’ve ever been able to do in two weeks—and way, way better! I checked the filters after the first use and was shocked by the pounds of sand, dirt, and other types of debris I didn’t even know had gotten into my pool. Pleased is an understatement.
I have to admit, I was a little unsure if the stock filters would actually catch the super fine particles of desert debris. Honestly, the stock filters did an incredible job and I haven’t found a reason to purchase the fine filters that are advertised as catching those tiny particles. In my opinion, the stock filters did just great. Cleaning the filters was super easy by the way. I popped them out, separated the filter panels, hosed them down—just make sure you do it in an area you don’t mind getting dirty—and wah lah! You’re done.
To get the most life out of this baby, you need to treat it like any other piece of equipment. Clean it after each use and then store it somewhere where it won't’ be tainted by the elements. In other words, don’t leave it in the sun and just put it away in a shed or garage.
I should also note that I have a unique pool with some weird turns and twists, almost like a U-shape. I was a little worried this equipment would struggle in the different depths, but I found that it managed to correct its orientation if it ever wobbled. It never stalled—not even once. Just keep in mind, there’s a chance it will get roughed up over prolonged use, like small scuffs on the outside, but it really didn’t bother me. It’s not a fancy car I’m showing off, after all. It’s a piece of equipment designed to do a job—and boy does it do that job!
My final thoughts? I love it. This thing paid for itself the same day I took it out of the box. I look forward to watching it work while I stretch out in the shade, sipping on a brewski." — Steven Smith

Get it from Amazon now: $799.00 & FREE Returns

 

4. Polaris Vac-Sweep 280 - Best All Purpose Debris Bag


best robotic pool cleaners

Highlight: Single chamber filter bag to capture large debris (acorns, pebbles, leaves).

Helpful review: "While I had to repair a few pieces over the years, overall, this did a fantastic job.
I bought this pool cleaner a few years ago, and even now, I'm super pleased with how good it’s still performing. Yeah, I spent a pretty penny on it, but trust me—this thing was worth it. The setup was easy, and while I watched it like a helicopter parent the first few days, it did it’s job so well, I stopped following its every move after a month. Now, almost a hundred percent of the time, I drop it in the pool and get on with my day. I only have to clean out the bag once every week or so (more so in the Fall) and I make sure to take it out when I have people over for a pool party. I’ll be honest: I have had to replace a few pieces over the years, but I found most of the parts for super cheap on Amazon and it really didn’t bother me.).
However, a lot of the things I replaced are just part of the experience of owning a piece of equipment like this. I replace the black mesh tail scrubber once every two or three months, I found a hole in the zipper bag, and one time the backup valve on the line broke. While a lot of that is just normal maintenance, I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that one time the connector assembly broke when I yanked too hard on the line and it snapped from the wall. Oh, and a piece of the swing axle snapped off inside the zipper bag, but really not a big deal.
Honestly, I just think this is the consequence of leaving a piece of equipment in chlorinated water for a prolonged period of time. You’re bound to have some pieces that stop working. That being said, I really can’t get over how awesome my pool looks now, and how clean it always stayed. Goodbye leaves and muck! Overall, after swapping my pool company with this cleaner, I’ve saved thousands." — Eric Howard

Get it from Amazon now: $599.00 & FREE Returns

 

5. AIPER Seagull SE - Best For The Money


best robotic pool cleaners

Highlight: No wires!

Helpful review: "After buying a house with an above ground pool I knew I needed a cleaning solution. People warned me cleaning this beast would be a pain in the butt. I considered throwing it out but wanted to try out some cleaning options before giving it over to the dump. As it turns out, not all above ground pools are that complicated! Especially once I found a solution to getting rid of the dirt and leaves.
I felt like I was scooping out debris every hour, and then there would still be stuff left over. I found this awesome little pool cleaner on Amazon for relatively cheap—cheap when you consider pools can be costly. I decided to give it a shot and wow, I really don’t regret it! It worked just as advertised, eating up all the leaves at the bottom of the pool.
It was super easy to use, too. I just checked the chemical levels and dropped it in the pool. When my family came to visit, they seriously thought I’d hired a professional pool cleaner. That’s how good it looked. This fierce little cleaner picked up leaves, dirt, bugs, you name it. He ate pollen, sand, small twigs. He tried to eat big twigs, but that didn’t go great. Which leads to the big BUT that ruined my lovely summer with the awesome little cleaner.
Because this cleaner is constructed with plastic, I spent a lot of my summer worrying I’d break them. The plastic part that clamps the bottom to the top was super hard to open and close. I broke a few nails before grabbing a utensil to pop it open. But here’s the good news: it was my fear more than anything that bothered me. As it turned out, those little plastic pieces were stronger than my nails! They never popped off. UNTIL—the day they did.
And not how you would think.
My little friend was just sunbathing out after a cleaning sesh, and very carefully, so not to disturb him, I slid him to the side.
I barely touched him, and yet somehow, that nudge did the trick. It was a heartbreaking moment. The plastic clips holding the wheels just snapped clear in half. On THREE of the four wheels, mind you! Naturally I went into damage control, but the wheels slipped off and took themself for a jog. It didn’t even matter if I found the wheels, because the rest of the plastic that held them in place was gone.
Devastated is an understatement. I wanted to get another one, but summer was almost over, so I decided to do my best to clean my pool on my own. Definitely not the same. It mainly sucks because those parts can’t be replaced. Short of gluing them back together, which I highly doubt would work in water, I knew there was no way to fix it.
I’ve thought about it a lot (I loved this little guy, remember?) It wasn’t me moving it over that broke it. I think the brittle pieces just degraded over time. I also have a saltwater pool, so maybe that had something to do with it? Granted, I think chlorine is worse. One day I had a perfectly functioning cleaner and the next, now it can’t even roll forward. I’d like to think this thing was tough. It lasted for eight months, after all. You just have to make sure to clean it after use.
If you DON'T have one of these awesome little cleaners, and you’re reading this because you’re on the fence, well, here’s your answer. Just do it! Just make sure you’re careful with those plastic pieces around the wheels, so exercise extra caution there!
In hindsight, I think I should have kept it out of the sun, but I’m a first time pool owner, okay?
By far, I don’t regret anything about buying this cleaner. Dare I say I fell in love with this little robot, and you better believe I’m getting another one. Eventually I may upgrade to a pool in the ground, but even then, this baby is going to be coming with me." — Martha S. Raven

Get it from Amazon now: $199.99 & FREE Return

 

6. Dolphin Nautilus CC - 3 Scheduling Options


best robotic pool cleaners

Highlight: Automatic scheduling option with 3 settings (once a day, every other day, twice a week).

Helpful review: "After owning an in the ground pool for over ten years, you can rest assured I’ve tried all the pool cleaning products on the market. You name it, I’ve tried it. Every single one of them had some type of issue, some more than they were worth.
Now at this point, I’ve just gone back to cleaning by hand, which obviously means that my pool was never fully clean. I always judged my neighbor for using a robotic pool cleaner because the chord kept getting tangled. Like what’s the point of buying something to make your life easier when you have to do extra work?
But eventually I couldn’t stand how dirty my pool became, and finally, after much consideration, I decided to try out the Dolphin Nautilus. My thoughts? Where has this thing been my whole life? Miracle is an understatement! All you have to do is drop it in the pool and walk away and it’s seriously that easy! With the exception of when I’m shocking the pool, my cleaner is pretty much always in there.
I set the time to run every day for two hours and when I tell you my pool has never been cleaner, I’m talking—shines like glass. Now my neighbor is judging me because he realizes my tool is better than this! Especially when I showed him how the Nautilus has a buoy that holds the cord upright. In other words, it NEVER tangles. Take that BOB!
The filter bucket is also super easy to clean. If I have to complain—and it’s a small one—I wish that it ran a bit longer for the first use. The two hour cycle time is preset and I think I need a bit longer than that. It was an easy fix, I just had to go outside and reset it. But really, that was only for the first time I used it. Now, as long as I’m using it regularly, it’s more about maintenance and the two hours is more than enough.
If you’re considering buying this, I would recommend buying a small box to cover the controller, voltage converter, and extension cord. Although the instructions recommend not using an extension cord, I grabbed a heavy gauge outdoor one from Home Depot and it works just as it needed to.
This pool cleaner is set for a daily cycle and stays in the pool. Even better, I can adjust the cycle every two to three days depending on how much I need it.
While I did purchase the ultra fine filter, I really didn’t need it as the normal filter picked up the majority of the stuff in the pool that bothered me. I’d recommend trying out a normal filter before investing in an ultra fine one.
There are some more expensive versions that have a caddy, a longer cord, and even Bluetooth, but I ultimately decided I didn’t need those. This Dolphin nautilus was perfect for me and my pool. So take it from me—if you want to impress your neighbor, don’t just sit there them judging them. Go buy a better version what they have! This one was worth every penny and I wished I’d bought it years ago. I received no incentives from the manufacturer to write this and used my own money to purchase it.
UPDATE:
After two summers with this pool cleaner, it still works great. The color has faded due to the elements, but the rubber tracks still function great! This morning, however, my nautilus was stalling, but after watching some videos, it was an easy fix. A wad of hair had gotten stuck in the impeller blade and after taking it out, it got right back to work. Honestly, that’s bound to happen from time to time. Really, highly recommend this product!" — Sarah Hatch

Get it from Amazon now: $599.00 & FREE Returns

 

7. Dolphin E10 - Best For Leaves And Pine Needles


best robotic pool cleaners

Highlight: Energy-efficient (5-cent per hour operating cost).

Helpful review: "Listen, when you live in a cottage community like I do, you’re going to need something to help you clean. What’s a cottage community you ask? Essentially an area, that when developed, took great care to preserve the surrounding foliage.
My community, specifically is known as a livable forest. The surrounding trees were once owned by paper and wood companies so know they’re allowed to live out their lives in safety. It’s great for environmentalists, which I am, but there are drawbacks to living there. The foliage is so very dense. Every corner of my yard is full of pine needles and leaves regardless of the time of year. Our pool is constantly assaulted by a wave of debris that makes raking and scooping absolutely pointless. I even bought a battery-operated "leaf blaster" to suctions all the leaves into a bag, but the gumball trees in my yard are immune to this. After cleaning, I was often too tired to play in the pool with my kids.
Even worse, if the pool gets algae, I couldn't even see the bottom so I could clean it out. After treating the algae, I’d always discover a mass amount of leaves at the bottom and no matter how many times I cleaned it, the algae always came back. It's a 27 foot pool with two pumps, so even though the skimmer caught a lot, it never caught everything.
After asking friends, perusing the web, and researching a bunch of pool cleaning equipment, I finally stumbled upon the Dolphin E10 robot. The reviews were good enough, but for a second I couldn’t decide between the E10 and the pricier Escape. The Escape is a bit more advanced with wifi and app controls, and can climb walls and map the area, but still, I decided to save about two hundred bucks and went with the E10.
Now let me tell you! Zero regrets! The water can be filthy, and all I have to do is turn it on, drop it in, and walk away. In an hour, I just empty the basket, and repeat the cycle.
This thing picks up leaves, sticks, pine needles, and even those treacherous gumballs! Best yet, if that pesky algae comes back, I never have to wonder if there’s a layer of leaves beneath it, because I know without a doubt that it’s already clean.
Although it’s not advertised as being able to climb walls, I’ve seen this bugger test out his spidy senses and do just that! not supposed to be able to climb walls, but it does occasionally go up the wall to the water line before backing back down. I read some reviews about people complaining about the cleaner doing wheelies, but honestly that’s how it fixes itself so it can change directions.
I would love it if there was an external bag instead of just the provided filter, but I understand that if that was the case, then the filtration might not work as well. This isn't necessarily that much of a shortcoming, as the basket is super easy to remove and clean out. I can also pop out the screens super quick, too.
The power supply did die in less than a year but the production company replaced it with a brand new one after I sent photos of the old one. It was a super fast process. They didn’t even ask me to return the old one!
It would be awesome if the wire had a swivel joint, mainly because after a couple of cycles, the wire might end up getting tangled. It's not too much of a hassle to untangle it, but I feel like it’s an unnecessary thing that I shouldn’t have to do. I’ve read somewhere that foam pool noodles can protect that, so I might give that a try.
Overall, considering the dense amount of trees around my large above ground pool, I really can’t complain with how well this does. This robot saved me time, money, and stress. Can’t recommend enough." — Jay Finley

Get it from Amazon now: $599.00 & FREE Returns

 

8. AIPER Seagull 1000 - Upgraded Suction Capability


best robotic pool cleaners

Highlight: Easily removed from the pool with the included floating rope, so you don’t need to get in the water.

Helpful review: "Even though my pool cleaner was taking care of the walls and using different chemicals, I still got so much leaves at the bottom of the pool. Finally I bought an Aiper Smart robot to take care of this. Traditional hose-connected water pressure cleaners can be up to a thousand dollars, so I really needed another alternative.
Then I discovered hoseless robot cleaners at a lesser, more affordable price range and chose the Aiper Smart cleaner because of the great reviews. Keep in mind a lot of the product reviews on You Tube are made by competitors trying to destroy this product’s reputation. Because of this, I decided to give an honest review about trying this out.
So why did I buy this?
1. Affordable
2. Hose-less design
3. Great reviews
PROS:
1. With no hoses, I never had to worry about this product getting tangled up. I also didn’t need a second pressure assist pump. That’s one less thing to worry about in case it breaks.
2. This product is self-powered and rechargeable with a ninety minute clean period. It’s truly effortless.
3. To clean it, I just spray it with a garden hose.
4. The robot collected everything I needed it to and had great suction.
5. The robot’s broom even picks up dust! With the brush and super strong suction it gets rid of all of the dust at the pool bottom.
6. Distance. My mid-size pol has an L shape and this product managed to cover the entire area. You can adjust the steering nozzles to experiment with multiple patterns to have it fit your pool shape.
CONS:
1. It takes six hours to charge up, so I recommend charging it overnight. The main issue is that depending on your pool size, or how dirty it is, you might want to do two passes in one day and you’ll still have to wait six hours to do this.
2. It’s unclear how long the battery life will last through all the charge cycles, as charge cycles can force the battery to work harder.
3. I’ve searched around and haven’t been able to find replacement parts for some of the aspects of the equipment that have the potential to fail in the future. Although it comes with a two year warranty, I think I’ll have to contact the email for product support to find anything in the future.
4. Unfortunately it feels fragile and I doubt it will withstand a fall from even waist height.
5. The robot doesn’t clean the walls, but honestly I don’t mind doing that, in comparison to how clean the bottom is, so I think this is really just preference.
OVERALL:
After a week of using my Aiper Smart Pool Cleaner, I’m super happy with my purchase and definitely impressed with how well it cleans. After months of struggling with debris at the pool bottom, now all I have to do is keep the robot powered up and brush over the sides of my pool. I love how much my pool sparkles now. Overall, this product is so great I renamed it after my last pool cleaner. Sorry, George." — Steve Schultz

Get it from Amazon now: $349.99 & FREE Returns

 

9. DOLPHIN Proteus DX3 - Huge Filter Basket


best robotic pool cleaners

Highlight: Cleans your pool in just 2 hours.

Helpful review: "After the Dolphin Nautilus left black marks over my plaster and completely ignored the leaves it was supposed to pick, I decided to try the Proteus, and boy am I glad! Its white body means the exterior won’t leave any black marks. If you have plaster anywhere, I recommend that you don’t get the Nautilus.
The filter basket of the Proteus is massive and holds leaves, twigs, and even those fuzzy things that fall from oak trees. The fine mesh even holds sand and fine dirt. I think it's pretty easy enough to clean out. I kind of just dump the bigger stuff and then rinse out the finer particles. The suction of this thing is so great! I watched it eat up a leaf before it ever rolled over it. The Nautilus could never.
It even climbs up the walls just like the Nautilus but it cleans them better. While it doesn’t approach the stairs, it does slurp up the dirt on the bench seat, so that’s a plus. All I have to do is brush off the stairs and it’s really no big deal.
It does pop a few wheelies and sometimes stops and reverses which kind of looks like it’s not working. Really, the most important part is that it actually cleans the whole pool in one cycle. I really could care less if it’s poppin’ wheelies as long as it clears out my pool in one cycle. Not all the products like this can do that.
I’m definitely very impressed with the Proteus and get this - it’s hundreds of dollars less than the Nautilus. And really so much better." — Mary Lou Lohrentz

Get it from Amazon now: $599.00 & FREE Returns

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