Cheap Best Automatic Pool Cleaners 2021 Reviews

Not everyone has the time to manually clean their swimming pool, so many look to automatic pool cleaners to do the dirty work for them. They save lots of time and can keep your pool water clean and safe to swim in. In order to maintain a sparkling pool, make sure you know about the several factors behind getting the best automatic pool cleaner for you.

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When you’re deciding on what automatic pool cleaner to buy, there are a few things you should look out for. Consider how much debris you want to clean out, for different cleaners pick up different types of dirt from fine sand to large leaves. It’s also important to get a cleaner that’s accustomed to the type of pool you have, which is likely to be either in-ground or above-ground. Lastly, you should think about which pressure option works best for your pool, since some automatic cleaners work better with low pressure or high pressure pumps.  Let’s look at the top 10 automatic pool cleaners in 2018 below:

10. Hayward RC9990CUB TigerShark Quick Clean Robotic Pool Cleaner

Hayward RC9990CUB TigerShark Quick Clean

This unit offers strong vacuuming power and is designed to scour your pool’s surface quickly and efficiently. Its two speeds are fast and really fast, and it doesn’t need any additional pumps or hoses in order to function, making it easy to use. The cleaner’s cartridge system is removable and can be cleaned by rinsing it with a hose.

While the unit does a good job of cleaning, the filter seems to need cleaning a couple times a day so the suction power isn’t reduced. It also doesn’t clean corners too well and the cord is prone to tangling which can be inconvenient.


  • Can clean pool in less than a few hours
  • High suction power
  • Uses less energy


  • Filter needs cleaning almost every day
  • Tends to miss corners
  • Cord can get tangled

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9. Hayward 925ADC Navigator Pro Automatic Suction Pool Cleaner

Hayward 925ADC Navigator Pro Automatic

Tools aren’t required to set up this cleaner and installation takes less than 10 minutes. The Navigator is equipped with programmed steering which gives it the ability to clean an average pool within three to four hours and miss less spots compared to random-style cleaners. The enhanced suction makes for more efficient and faster dirt and debris cleanup.

While this cleaner can pick up dirt quickly, it has less suction power compared to other newer Hayward models. It also seems to jam up from large debris such as rocks and big leaves. It can climb walls up to a foot or so, but can get stuck in the deep end of pools.


  • SmartDrive® steering for efficient pool coverage
  • Installs in less than 10 minutes
  • Enhanced suction for faster dirt pickup


  • Can get stuck in deep end
  • Has trouble with large debris
  • Doesn’t climb walls very high

8. Polaris F9550 Sport Robotic In-Ground Pool Cleaner

Polaris F9550 Sport Robotic

With its four-wheel drive and ActivMotion Sensor technology, the Polaris cleaner is ideal for large and free form pools. Its Vortex Vacuum power allows it to pick up large debris while it keeps functioning at its maximum performance and it comes with a handy remote control and includes a seven-day programmable timer.

The Polaris is quite the investment, but it’s popular for its remote control ability and cleaning power. The unit does sometimes flip over on it back, but it’s able to flip itself over again to continue cleaning. The filter is easy to remove and clean, although the cord to the unit can often get tangled up.


  • Easy to clean
  • Able to pick up fine sand and large debris
  • Has a seven-day timer


  • Remote is a bit awkward to use
  • Doesn’t signal when unit completes a cycle
  • Cord constantly gets tangled

7. Aquabot AJET122 Pool Rover S2-50 Robotic Pool Cleaner

Aquabot AJET122 Pool Rover

The Aquabot scrubs up dirt and debris for deeper cleaning and comes with two sets of filter bags for picking up either fine particles or large debris. It’s able to scour the pool floor, cove, and part of the walls and provides access to the filter media through the top while filtering 80-85 gallons per minute for efficient suction performance.

The unit can easily get stuck at the deep end of pools and has trouble navigating its way out. It efficiently removes fine particles from the water and the filter is effortless to clean, although it tends to skip corners and stays in certain areas of the pool for long periods of time.


  • No problem handling fine particles
  • Filter is easy to remove
  • Includes two types of filter bags


  • Cord can get tangled if not tied up
  • Gets stuck in deep end
  • Filter needs to be cleaned after each use

6. Hayward 2025ADV Pool Vac Pool Cleaner

Hayward 2025ADV Pool Vac Pool Cleaner

The Hayward 2025ADV operates silently and can easily connect to a skimmer or suction port in less than 10 minutes. You don’t need any additional equipment because it’s powered straight from your pool’s filtration system, and the pre-programmed steering pattern guides the hose as it navigates the unit around the pool floor and eliminates the hose from tangling.

The unit only has a radius of seven inches when it comes to climbing walls, and it tends to get stuck in certain areas of the pool. On the other hand, it works quietly and picks up small particles with little to no problem, but you need to purchase a separate leaf canister for larger debris.


  • Pre-programmed steering pattern for efficient pool coverage
  • Silent operation
  • Connects easily to skimmer or suction port


  • Only partially climbs walls
  • Gets stuck in deep ends and angles
  • Leaf canister is not included

5. Zodiac MX8 Suction-Side Cleaner

Zodiac MX8 Suction Side Cleaner

The Zodiac MX8 offers advanced dual navigation for thorough pool coverage and its X-Trax tires give it the ability to climb vertical walls and get into tight corners. Your pool system won’t be under too much pressure since the Zodiac’s ultra-efficient power source performs at its best at low flow. It’s ideal for in-ground pools and is compatible with variable speed pumps.

The unit’s suction power can pick up small debris and leaves, but if anything gets caught, it will stop operation until the obstruction is cleared manually. It’s not too good at picking up broken sticks and bark and needs a bit of a push to go up walls, but overall the Zodiac is a decent cleaner for pools with flat levels.


  • Able to climb walls
  • Compatible with solar, two speed, and variable speed pumps
  • Large debris inlet


  • Can get jammed easily
  • Doesn’t climb stairs

4. Pool Rover S2-40i Robotic Pool Cleaner

Pool Rover S2 40i Robotic Pool Cleaner

This four-wheeled cleaner effectively cleans both above-ground and in-ground pools and it’s able to vacuum up dirt particles, debris, and other contaminants from pool floors and coves. The filter bag can be accessed through the top of the unit and can filter over 80 gallons a minute. It’s also an optimal cleaner for those that want to save water and energy.

Aside from its powerful suction technology, the unit does need a bit of moving around since the wheels are a bit tricky to adjust. The filter bags are easy to clean and can even pick up debris without getting jammed. It also seems that the cord doesn’t tangle much, but the cleaner can get stick in certain areas of the pool.


  • Filters 80 gallons of water a minute
  • Able to pick up large debris without getting stuck
  • Tangle-resistant cord


  • Can’t climb entire pool wall
  • Can get stuck in one area

3. Aquabot APRVJR Pool Rover Junior Robotic Above-Ground Pool Cleaner

Aquabot APRVJR Pool Rover Junior Robotic

Able to vacuum and micro-filter unattractive dirt and debris from your pool, the Pool Rover Junior can filter over 70 gallons of water per minute. The filter bag is easily accessible through the bottom of the unit and can pick up dirt as small as two microns. It’s mostly ideal for flat-bottom above-ground pools and is easy to set up for all you have to do is plug and play.

The Pool Rover Junior does an efficient job of scouring pool floors and picking up debris, but it won’t climb up walls without flipping over. The cord can twist up as well which will require you to check on the unit every now and then to make sure it doesn’t stop operating.


  • Can filter over 70 gallons per minute
  • Filter bag is easy to remove from the bottom of the unit
  • Reduces chemical, energy, and water costs


  • Cord tangles often
  • Can’t climb walls

2. Dolphin 99996323 Dolphin Nautilus Robotic Pool Cleaner with Swivel Cable

Dolphin 99996323 Dolphin Nautilus Robotic Pool Cleaner

Lightweight and user-friendly, the Dolphin Nautilus scrubs, vacuums, and filters out dirt from your pool’s surface in under three hours. The cartridge filter is easy to remove and the swivel cable prevents any twisting or tangling. The cleaner is ready to use after simply plugging it in, and there’s no additional connections needed. It’s mostly ideal for in-ground residential pools up to 50-feet in length.

The unit is a bit on the heavy side, so a caddy might make it easier to haul it around. The filters do need cleaning very often, although they pick up quite a bit. It can also climb walls, but the scrubbers aren’t very effective in certain areas of the pool.


  • Quick plug and play setup
  • Filter can pick up sticks, leaves, dirt, etc.
  • Cord doesn’t tangle


  • Scrub brushes aren’t too effective
  • Can drop dirt back into water when removing unit from pool

1. Dolphin 99996403-PC Dolphin Nautilus Plus Robotic Pool Cleaner

The Dolphin Nautilus Plus’s CleverClean technology lets the unit clean the pool floor, walls, and waterline, and to keep operation consistent, the Maytronics patented swivel cable makes sure the cord doesn’t tangle or twist. Additionally, the Nautilus Plus doesn’t need your pool’s pump and filter to perform, saving you energy. With its 360° suction, the unit filters and collects debris in its self-contained filter so you save water.

This is a fairly popular unit for it’s lightweight, powerful, and easy to clean. Although, the cord may be a bit short for some users with larger pools. It also won’t climb stairs and walls all the way, along with being a bit heavy as you pull it from the water.


  • Convenient and easy to clean filter system
  • Tangle-free swivel cable
  • Updated with a weekly timer


  • Won’t climb walls all the way
  • Cord may be a bit short for some
  • Large leaves can jam the unit


Cleaning your pool is inevitable, but not all of us have the time to do it ourselves by hand which is why many pool owners invest in cleaning units. Whether you have an in-ground or above-ground pool, the automatic pool cleaners mentioned should make it easier to decide which one is best for you and your pool.

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