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Thread: Pressure Vs. Robot

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    Pressure Vs. Robot

    I have a 30,000 gallon L-salt pool that I would like to add a pool cleaner to. I did not account for this when building....my fault. So now I am trying to decide between a robotic (aquabot) and a pressure cleaner like the polaris 280 which seems to be highly recommended here. My question is, how much work is to to install the pressure system instead of just tossing the robot in the pool and is that work worth it? Any advice is greatly appreciated.
    Robert
    28000 gallon
    1-1/2 hp pump
    244 hayward sand filter
    Hayward SWG
    BBB method rules!

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Pressure Vs. Robot

    Installing the pressure pipe usually means either cutting into the deck, or tunneling through it. Cutting through invariable leaves visible traces. Tunneling under is no fun at all and difficult to fill in properly.

    Pressure side cleaners don't tend to work quite as well in really large pools like yours. They are really at their prime in 12,000 to 16,000 gallons and above that they start to be a little bit too little. Robotic cleaners are better in larger pools, though they generally cost more, are more work to manage, and wear out more quickly.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: Pressure Vs. Robot

    I had a Polaris 260 for 12 years. The thing only had to be totally rebuilt once in that time. Changed gears a couple of other times, but it seemed to run and run every day. I didn't like th etail getting caught in the hose where it connects to the wall. There is a foam block you can get to help with that and it works pretty good.

    Now I have the AquaBot for the sake of reducing my E bill. After 1 1/2 yrs, I have changed the drive belts and the tracks so far. About $65 in parts. Not a cheap bot to fix. It is more of a PITA to clean because the bag is inside. If you have a decent amount of stuff in your pool, the fine mesh bags gets clogged. For leaves use the heavy mesh bag.

    I am having my pool replumbed and I plan to have the booster pump plumbed back in as well...just in case I want to go back.

    The Autobot seems to pick up more than the Polaris. More suction. It climbs the walls better and scrubs the tiles which the Polaris won't do.
    24k gal 16x38, spa 7x6, Colorscape Caribbean Blue plaster, Pentair Intelliflow, Hayward jacuzzi air pump, Pentair 520 filter, Raypak 336k cu-ni heater, Aquabot Turbo T... pool remodel finished 8/2012.

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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    Re: Pressure Vs. Robot

    I think part of the question that needs to be asked is what sort of debris tends to get into your pool? As the right answer for dust and dirt may not be the same as for leaves, acorns, bugs, etc.
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
    I use and endorse TFtestKits TF-100 from http://tftestkits.net
    ~Remember TFP counts on your donations to keep this site ad free~

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    mitch08's Avatar
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    Re: Pressure Vs. Robot

    In my amateur opinion for a pool that large, a robot will do a better job.

    Just be ready to pay pay pay when things start going wrong with it

    Aquabots have 2 motors. Both of mine went 2 years apart. Thats about $400 to replace each.
    Besides the $60 - $80 to replace the belts, etc every few years.

    But when they work, they work well.
    18x38 Inground Liner (25k gal) Paver surround, multi-speed pump, DE Filter, Raised spill over spa, TF-100

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    donaldm823's Avatar
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    Re: Pressure Vs. Robot

    one extreme advantage of the robots are that they pick up the fine dust debris normally missed by a Polaris pressure washer. I used a Polaris robot my previous big pool 30K and it worked great as well as my Polaris 360 pressure washer. Now that I have moved to a smaller pool, I find the robot picks up the very fine dust that works thru the lanai screens, and my Polaris 360 would never get that stuff
    Don SW Florida
    10,000 gal in ground concrete pool
    Pentair Cartridge filter, Pentair SWG, Pentair Intelliflow VS pump (11018)
    FAFCO solar panels w/Pentair SolarTouch controller
    using BBB for pool chemistry/Lamotte ColorQ tester for daily testing

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    Re: Pressure Vs. Robot

    All great comments. The debris I am looking at is fine dust rather than large leaves. I am really not looking to tunnel the deck, so I guess the post now becomes HOW good of a robot do I need? Of those that have them, there seems to be a big & difference when you jump up to a unit that has a split front scrubber vs a single scrubber. Also, is the remote really needed? or is it just a feature I can live without?


    Thanks in advance!
    Robert
    28000 gallon
    1-1/2 hp pump
    244 hayward sand filter
    Hayward SWG
    BBB method rules!

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    duraleigh's Avatar
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    Re: Pressure Vs. Robot

    You can live without the remote although it is convenient for "spot" cleaning. YOu pay for cleaning power. With a 30k pool, I would suggest a robot in the 800-1000 range. Blue Diamonds and Aquabots enjoy a pretty good reputation here on the forum.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Pressure Vs. Robot

    I just found a Dolphine maytronics dx6 for $1107. Anyone have experience with this cleaner?
    Robert
    28000 gallon
    1-1/2 hp pump
    244 hayward sand filter
    Hayward SWG
    BBB method rules!

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Pressure Vs. Robot

    I have the somewhat similar Dophin Diagnostic and have been very happy with it. The debris bag isn't as easy to clean out compared to some of the competition, but that hasn't been a problem for me.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: Pressure Vs. Robot

    Thanks Jason! I dont mind a little work if the reults are worth the effort! After all I own a pool!
    Robert
    28000 gallon
    1-1/2 hp pump
    244 hayward sand filter
    Hayward SWG
    BBB method rules!

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    mitch08's Avatar
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    Re: Pressure Vs. Robot

    Quote Originally Posted by pool4mykids
    Thanks Jason! I dont mind a little work if the reults are worth the effort! After all I own a pool!
    Yeah sometimes I catch myself cursing and getting all mad cleaning out the bag.
    And then it'll hit me... I didn't just spend the last 2 hours manually cleaning the pool and its absolutely spotless.
    So getting angry about taking the 5 minutes to clean the bag is pretty ridiculous
    18x38 Inground Liner (25k gal) Paver surround, multi-speed pump, DE Filter, Raised spill over spa, TF-100

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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    Re: Pressure Vs. Robot

    I too have an older Dolphin Diagnostic robot, I bought it used off ebay for $300 just to try a robot cleaner without spending a lot of money after getting fed up with suction side cleaners a year ago this week (I only remember that because it arrived around mother's day). In the last year I have been very impressed with its cleaning power, and when it dies I will certainly replace it with another robot unit.
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
    I use and endorse TFtestKits TF-100 from http://tftestkits.net
    ~Remember TFP counts on your donations to keep this site ad free~

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    Re: Pressure Vs. Robot

    I picked up a new Turbo T for just under $1k on the internet a couple yrs ago. The T has the more powerful motor and it does pick up more than the Polaris as others mention. I wasn't willing to pay $400 or so more for a remote. I just use the brush to get anything the bot misses. It doesn't do stairs worth a darn and doesn't like ladders.

    Sometimes I just throw it in the SPA for a fast leaf/debris pick up. Couldn't do that with the Polaris. It does the spa better than I thought it would.

    The bot also stays on the bottom better than the Polaris. Seems the Polaris was always bouncing around and floats off the bottom when the bag starts to fill up. The bot is like a tank and rolls up the sides all the way to the top, then scrubs a couple of feet, then backs down after the air hits the sensor. It really moves alot of water through the bag.
    24k gal 16x38, spa 7x6, Colorscape Caribbean Blue plaster, Pentair Intelliflow, Hayward jacuzzi air pump, Pentair 520 filter, Raypak 336k cu-ni heater, Aquabot Turbo T... pool remodel finished 8/2012.

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    Re: Pressure Vs. Robot

    I have a 18x38 roman-shaped pool with a 8 1/2 foot deep end.
    The Polaris 360 has been perfect for us. Once we open, we don't get a lot of debris other than when it storms.
    I tried a robot and it was a pain to take in and out and it would get caught in an infinite loop because of the way my wedding cake steps are shaped. I like the pool clean all the time. With a robot the dirty/clean cycle is way more pronounced, meaning you put the cleaner in when it's dirty, then wait till it's dirty again. We only take the Polaris out when the kids are in swimming, otherwise it's in there all the time. I am going to buy a leaf bag this year for storms. The only replacement part I've gotten is the little sponge on the end of the tail.

    Just one gals opinion!
    TF-100 Test Kit, 28,000 gallon IG , 3M quartz plaster '09, 48 sq ft DE filter, Heat Siphon SX5HP heat pump '09, Polaris 360 '10, Protect-A-Child safety fence

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    Re: Pressure Vs. Robot

    I'm enjoying the pool (20x40 AG Splash Super Pool, 29,000 gal) for the first time since we've had it. I spent the last 5 years fooling with manual vacuuming or the useless Polaris turtle thing. Constant back washing to clear the filter hours a day and the stuff would settle back to the bottom in a few hours and the cycle begins again.

    I bought a Dolphin Supreme M4. Absolutely amazing. It has 2 types of filters (course and fine) that are simple to clean with a hose...minutes. The pool was open in a day even though we have heavy iron well water and gunk from storms. In past years it took weeks of a lot of work. After its 2.5 hour cycle, I'd hose off the filters and through it back in and go have a sarsaparilla. First cycles I used the coarse filters and then "polished" with the fine. I've saved a lot on chemicals that were being back washed out or vac'd to waste. If stuff settles to the bottom, I toss the Dolphin in and its clean in a very short time. The M4 is amazing it somehow figures out where to go and does it. Our Splash Pool curves in so I did not expect it to be able to climb the wall...it does. The $1300 is worth every dime to me and will be mitigated over time by less chemicals, IMHO.

    I can't speak to other robots and maybe there are cheaper versions that do as well.
    Cedar Island NC (Southern Outer Banks)
    Splash Super Pool (40x20)
    29,000 gal; AG; Sand Filter; 1.5HP pump. Use the cosmic Taylor Test Kit
    New Aquarite SWG w/T-15 cell; New Dolphin Supreme M4 Robot cleaner

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