Any robots better than others for leafy environments?


Silver Supporter
Aug 12, 2015
Folsom Prison, CA
Thinking about going robotic, any recommendations for a pool that sits under an oak tree, other than kill the oak tree (it has crossed my mind). I am looking for something that has a good capacity for leaves. Thanks.


Mod Squad
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Platinum Supporter
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Jul 16, 2012
Central MD


Well-known member
Aug 19, 2013
I was looking at the Nautilus by Dolphin, wonder if that is comparable.
The Nautilus uses cartridges, which have lower capacity than the top-load baskets. The basket also has a larger single opening at the bottom as opposed to 2 narrower openings for the cartridge models.



Divin Dave

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Oct 2, 2013
Longview, Texas
I would recommend going robotic, but none of them are going to have the capacity needed for oak leaves in the Fall Season. I have an oak too, and when the leaves fall in Oct/Nov, there is nothing other than a big net that will clean them out.

All other times of the year though, a robot will be fine with oaks in your yard.


Mod Squad
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LifeTime Supporter
Aug 10, 2012
FL panhandle
Yep, get a good leaf rake for the big leaf days and a robot for the rest. We have lots of trees, there are pics of my robot full of leaves in my pool thread, link in sig.


Well-known member
May 10, 2016
Baton Rouge, LA
We bought a Dolphin s300i last year. It was pricy but it has made life much easier. Our pool has one oak tree over it and others nearby. The large intake area of the s300i helps a ton. As long as you don't wait too long in between runs, it gets pretty much everything; even large leaves. If there is an accumulation of a bunch of stuff at the bottom in one spot it will not pick it up.
I do not have anything to compare it to, but we love our lil robot. The s200, s300, and s300i all I believe have the same intake and body. The differences are mainly in functions/features (i.e. cleaning cycles and smartphone compatibility).


TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jun 7, 2011
Midland TX
They will handle a good number of leaves depending on the size. We have a lot of Live Oak in Texas and those are small. Mine are quite large leaves by mid summer, but if there aren't too many my Robot will handle a surprising number with the right screens running.

Overall though, Robots are just superior to all other types on cleaners no question. The good ones are simply amazing.


TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Apr 27, 2012
Grand Rapids, MI
Censored, I have a huge maple overhead and a forest of nearby oak leaves ;)
I have the older Dolphin M4 with the cartridges and it does gobble up a surprising amount...when this one wears out, I'd likely move to basket type.

But what I wanted to share that really helps in leaf management is a contraption you fit to a return jet called Pool gets a LOT of leaves before they even sink: : PoolSkim Pool Skimmer and Pool Cleaner : Swimming Pool Maintenance Kits : Patio, Lawn Garden

Then again, in the 3rd week of Oct., NOTHING stops this from happening: lol. Which is in part why I got a dome this year for winter use...(this year the dome will be going up well before my typical oct 23rd "drop day")


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