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Top 10 Featuers you Want.
Robotic Pool Cleaner Reviews
Some of these features are essential in a quality robotic pool cleaner. Essential as in, why even have a robotic pool cleaner if it doesn’t perform these actions? These are the traits that every cleaner should not only have, but execute well, too. Unfortunately, many mid-range, “budget” robotic pool cleaners count these essential features as frivolous. You’ll notice many manufacturers will skimp on capabilities in order to slash the price of their models to be more affordable. But when you save a few hundred dollars, you’re also losing performance features that make a good robotic pool cleaner worth having.
Welcome to a quick crash course in robotic pool cleaner ownership. We’ll walk you through the top 10 features for any robot, and we’ll help you understand which ones are essential and which ones are perks that’ll make your life way easier. Buckle up and take notes – it’s time to talk robotic pool cleaners.
The 10 Essential Pool Robot Features
Premium vs Entry Level
Some of these features are essential in a quality robotic pool cleaner. Essential as in, why even have a robotic pool cleaner if it doesn’t perform these actions? These are the traits that every cleaner should not only have, but execute well, too. Unfortunately, many mid-range, “budget” robotic pool cleaners leave these out. You’ll notice many manufacturers will skimp on capabilities in order to slash the price of their models to be more affordable. But you’re also losing performance features that make a good robotic pool cleaner worth having.
1. Waterline + Tile Scrubbing
Some Robots Can't Clean All of the Pool
One of the main reasons to buy a robotic pool cleaner is to have it clean the scum off of the waterline so you don’t have to. But most budget models will only clean pool floors, maybe the walls. When you invest a few hundred dollars more, you get a robot that will actually reach and scrub your waterline for you, among other perks. You can let that pool brush gather dust – you won’t need it.
2. Gyroscopic Technology
Only on the Best Robots
Gyroscopic technology is fairly new. Not a lot of manufacturers are using them yet. Robotic pool cleaners that are fitted with a gyroscope on the interior of the robot are truly “smart.” Gyroscopic sensors precisely control and monitor movements. That way, your robotic pool cleaner won’t wander aimlessly or waste time and energy cleaning the same spots repeatedly. The Dolphin Sigma is one of the few non-commercial pool robots with a gyroscope.
3. Weekly Smart Timer
There is No Automation Without This
A weekly smart timer is a simple solution to the tedious task of manually starting and stopping your robotic pool cleaner for every cleaning. However, you’ll find it primarily on higher-end models. This is a cop-out by manufacturers, as even moderately priced robotic pool cleaners in the $700 range should have a weekly timer. The timer especially comes in handy during pool season when your robot is cleaning more frequently – just set a schedule and let it do its thing. Premium robots like the Dolphin Premier, Dolphin Quantum and Dolphin Sigma will have a weekly smart timer.
4. MultiMedia Filtration
Why Choose Only one Filter Type
You can find robotic pool cleaners that don’t cost over a thousand dollars with excellent filtration systems – Dolphin is particularly known for this. But no matter how powerful and efficient the filtration system, most models are limited to one type of filter media. What get stuck with only one option? Robotic pool cleaners with MultiMedia have multiple filter media so you can ustomize your pool’s cleaning job based on your needs. Use an ultra-fine filter to capture smaller particles, use a standard cartridge for a regular clean, use the oversized leaf bag for the heavy jobs.
5. High Flow Rate
Some Robots Have More Suction
High flow rates are indicative of power. And power comes down to motors. Premium models like the Dolphin Sigma and Premier have motors that are 20% larger and move 20% more water than typical robotic pool cleaners. That means faster cleaning, better suction, and better climbing power.
6. Full Indicator Light
Smart Robots Know When They're Full
Without a fullness indicator, you’ll be relying on intuition to know when your robotic pool cleaner needs to be cleaned. That requires the song and dance of pulling it up to the surface, waiting for the water to release, then checking the filter. Unfortunately, this is one of the first features to get the axe on budget robotic pool cleaners.
7. Anti-Tangle Swivel
No More Tangles
You absolutely want a robotic pool cleaner with a swivel. Ever tried to untangle 60 feet of knots from a power cord under the hot summer sun? It’s awful, trust us. The anti-tangle swivel eliminates tension from building up in the cord as the robotic pool cleaner roams the pool, keeping tedious knots from forming. Plus, that kind of cord dexterity leads to more efficient cleaning.
8. Commercial Grade Motors
Some Robots Have More Suction
The more power, the better the cleaning job. Models with two or three commercial-grade motors are known to last longer and clean better, thanks to stronger suction up to 20% stronger and better climbing ability to clean the tile and waterline. If you want maximum suction power and the ability to clean the tile and waterline with ease, a robotic pool cleaner with commercial power at a consumer price might be for you.
9. Long 3 Year Warranty
One Repair Pays for Itself
A robotic pool cleaner’s warranty is a measure of confidence by the manufacturer. That’s why if you find a budget robot with a limited warranty for a year, you should run. Repairs like motors and power supplies can cost $200 - $300 each. One repair and you would have beeen better off with a premium model. If you’re really investing in a quality robotic pool cleaner, it’ll have a nice long warranty. We’re talking three years that isn't prorated or limited to the number of cycles. Excellent robotic pool cleaners work hard in harsh chemicals and weather, so don’t take a chance on one without a warranty from the manufacturer to back it up.
10. Remote Capable
Some Robots Have More Fun
Controlling your robotic pool cleaner via remote control is a perk that is not only great for spot cleaning, but it's fun and could keep the kids entertained. Some models we like are remote capable, and some even sync to an app so you can control it from your smartphone. Best of all, you can use most of these remotes and apps to manually navigate your robotic pool cleaner to reach any challenging spots in your pool.
There are only a few robotic pool cleaners that will tic all of these boxes. You’ll find an almost-perfect 10 on Dolphin’s Sigma and Premier. Dolphin Quantum and the Aquabot Elite are close behind. These premium models will leave any pool owner thrilled with all the work they don’t have to do anymore.
Remember – don’t be lured by budget prices and pretty branding. Really dive into the feature set of the robotic pool cleaner you’re considering before you buy. Select the one that meets as many of the essential features as possible, and it’ll be an investment your future self will thank you for.