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Thread: Pool Cleaner Advice

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Tampa Bay Area

    Pool Cleaner Advice


    Our PebbleTec pool is approximately 32' x 15', free-form, with a long step and sitting area in the shallow end. We have a dedicated 2" suction port/line that's located not quite midway on the long wall. The pool has a 3' shallow end, and a pretty aggressive slope to a 8' deep end. We have a variable speed pump, single skimmer, and over-sized Pentair cartridge filter. I currently run the pump on low speed (1,300 RPM's I believe) for 14 hours, and high speed (2,300 RPM's I believe) for 2 hours each day. Most of the debris that enters the pool is grass clippings, sand/dirt, small worms and insects, along with a minimal amount of small, soft leaves and on occasion, a long piece of palm frond material. For a short period of time I ran a Zodiac G3 in the pool, and it had two distinct tendencies:

    1. More often than not, it could not make it up the slope to the shallow end, and would turn back into the deep end, so it continually circled in the deep end.
    2. When it was able to navigate the slope, it would either get stuck on the long step, or make a quick return to the deep end after a single pass in the shallow end.

    I was constantly guiding it around the shallow end manually with the aluminum pole to clean the shallow end, which took more time than manually vacuuming the pool. I also tried an original Kreepy Krauly that came with the house, and had the same result, so I believe a traditional, "skirted" cleaner might not work in this pool. I had a Hayward Navigator, and could likely be retired after spending a fortune on parts, including wings and rubber feet. The cleaner would work great with the new parts for 30 days at best, then the performance went downhill.

    I'm not interested in investing in a robotic cleaner, and want something I can leave in the pool nearly full time. As such, I'm considering the Poolvergnuegen 2X, Zodiac MX 8 and Zodiac MX 6. I worry about the complexity of the Zodiac cleaners, with their pivoting vanes, gearboxes, etc., and have read of premature gear wear and constant replacement of the gear boxes. The MX 6 has a single gear box, which would make it less expensive to maintain, however it still has the pivoting vane assembly. Owners report they are very effective when properly working.

    No one in my area sells "The Pool Cleaner," so I'd be buying that sight unseen. My concern with the Poolvergnuegen is that I've read that it tips backward when going up steep slopes, so doesn't clean the slope area, and can also get trapped in the deep end. I have no interest in the 4X version due to the cost of parts replacement. The one advantage I see with the Zodiac is that parts costs seem to be low in relation to other cleaners. The problem is, if you're replacing things frequently, low parts costs become a moot point.

    Any advice on which way to go in my specific instance? Is there another cleaner in this price range that I haven't considered?

    Thanks in advance!
    18,000 gallons
    Pentair Cartridge filter
    Pentair VS Pump
    32x15 In-ground Free-form

  2. Back To Top    #2

    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Long Beach, CA

    Re: Pool Cleaner Advice

    I've had my 2-wheeled "The Pool Cleaner" for 4 years now and the only money I've put into it is for a new set of tires.

    I have noticed the cleaner does tip backwards some but it still does the job it was built to do. When the pump is running on low-speed the cleaner will not work all that good if the speed is too low. If the cleaner is set to run all the time with your above schedule it should do fine. I like to run my cleaner for 3-4 hours with my pump on high speed once a week.
    16k gal plaster with raised spa, Jandy DEV60 filter, 2 HP 2-speed SHPF Jandy Stealth pump
    Hayward Aqua Rite T-15 SWCG, Jandy LXi 400k BTU NG heater, 350 sq.ft. of Sun Star solar panels, TF-100 Test Kit, Dolphin s300i Cleaner
    Test Kits . Pool Math . Chlorine/CYA Chart . The SLAM Process

  3. Back To Top    #3
    Mod Squad Patrick_B's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2011

    Re: Pool Cleaner Advice

    I'll just say that of the many 10's of thousands of dollars we invested in our new pool, the less than 2K was the best, and smartest money we put into it. Before you decide you won't invest a little more in a pool like that, think about it.

    The effort to remove the Dolphin M5 we have is no big deal and microscopic in comparison to the vast amount of work he does. It gets the pool clean and removes an amazing amount of stuff when it doesn't even look dirty.
    TFP Moderator
    Essential Links:
    TF-100 Test Kit, ABC's Of Pool Chemistry, Test Kits, SLAM Your Pool
    28K Gal IG FreeForm, CLI Quartz, Flagstone, 36"SF, Pentair VS Pump, EasyTouch W/Remote, Rheem 400KBTU Htr

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