Choosing Suction Pool Cleaner

New2water

LifeTime Supporter
Jun 28, 2011
78
Stockton, CA
I'm in the market for a pool cleaner as my Kreepy Krauly has worn out after 2 years. Fortunately, I don't get a lot of leafs and debris and I've never had to vacuum the pool manually. I have read the Pool School article and much on the topic of pool cleaners in this forum and wish to stay with suction driven cleaners. I have a dedicated suction port separate from my skimmer basket. I was considering Zodiac G3 but have read many comments about its staying in the deep end of the pool. My pool is 3 ft at the shallow end and 8 feet on the deep end.
Which suction based pool cleaner would you recommend that cleans the whole pool, climbs walls, is relatively durable, and accommodates an in-line screen basket to avoid sending too much debris to the pump and filter?
 
Last edited:

mas985

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
May 3, 2007
12,962
Pleasanton, CA
I had a suction side cleaner for over 10 years and was fairly happy with it. It was called "ThePoolCleaner". Hayward bought the company and I think the design went off patent so there are several versions of it now. The cleaner did a pretty good job and climbed the walls. However, climbing the walls is not enough to actually clean the walls. That requires a rotating brush which as far as I know, no suction side cleaner has a brush so I had to manually brush the walls. The other downside of a suction cleaner is you have to run the main pump with water diverted to the cleaner. In CA, this is a big energy hog and requires extra run time to complete all task.

When my cleaner failed I decide to try a robot and discovered what I have been missing all these years. It actually scrubs the walls so no manual brushing is required. I leave it in the pool all week and a built in timer runs it every 1, 2 or 3 days. Best thing is that it doesn't require the main pump to run consuming a lot of energy. My energy bills have gone down quite a bit since I got the robot and the VS pump. Just something to consider.
 
  • Like
Reactions: New2water

setsailsoon

Gold Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Oct 25, 2015
2,147
Stuart/FL
New2,

I'm a couple of years behind Mark so I still have ThePoolCleaner. I find it does pretty well but I do need to supplement with manual brushing for best results. 4 years in with the cleaner all I've had to replace is one set of wheel rubber (about $35). The hose is showing some signs of wear also.

My spending is constrained with the recent recovery from a lightning strike that gave me a good reason to upgrade automation to Intellicenter. After that will I'll be in the hunt for a VS drive for my pump and then if all goes well I'll be looking at robots.

I hope this is helpful.

Chris
 
  • Like
Reactions: New2water

New2water

LifeTime Supporter
Jun 28, 2011
78
Stockton, CA
I had a suction side cleaner for over 10 years and was fairly happy with it. It was called "ThePoolCleaner". Hayward bought the company and I think the design went off patent so there are several versions of it now. The cleaner did a pretty good job and climbed the walls. However, climbing the walls is not enough to actually clean the walls. That requires a rotating brush which as far as I know, no suction side cleaner has a brush so I had to manually brush the walls. The other downside of a suction cleaner is you have to run the main pump with water diverted to the cleaner. In CA, this is a big energy hog and requires extra run time to complete all task.
Thank you for pointing out the benefit of rotating brushes to clean the walls and other surfaces. What do you think of Zodiac MX8 Elite which has the rotating brushes?

When my cleaner failed I decide to try a robot and discovered what I have been missing all these years. It actually scrubs the walls so no manual brushing is required. I leave it in the pool all week and a built in timer runs it every 1, 2 or 3 days. Best thing is that it doesn't require the main pump to run consuming a lot of energy. My energy bills have gone down quite a bit since I got the robot and the VS pump. Just something to consider.
There's no doubt about the benefits of robot cleaners. We just don't use the pool much and are trying to maintain it at the lowest cost. Which robot cleaner did you choose? I have someone selling a 3 year old Dolphin Deluxe 4 with caddy for $300. Since I don't know much about robotic cleaners, I'm not sure the ongoing cost of repairs or its value.
 

mas985

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
May 3, 2007
12,962
Pleasanton, CA
Thank you for pointing out the benefit of rotating brushes to clean the walls and other surfaces. What do you think of Zodiac MX8 Elite which has the rotating brushes?
Still requires redirection of flow away from the skimmers to the cleaner. It is a bit self defeating. You really want to remove the debris before it sinks to the bottom of the pool and if the cleaner is stealing water from the skimmer, that won't happen. Plus, at that price you are not far off from a robot.

There's no doubt about the benefits of robot cleaners. We just don't use the pool much and are trying to maintain it at the lowest cost. Which robot cleaner did you choose? I have someone selling a 3 year old Dolphin Deluxe 4 with caddy for $300. Since I don't know much about robotic cleaners, I'm not sure the ongoing cost of repairs or its value.
Many on the forum have gone with one of these:

The extra cost of a robot will be made up very quickly in energy savings. Especially in CA.
 
  • Like
Reactions: New2water

Etchase

Active member
May 22, 2019
33
Hawaii
Wondering what happened to your kreepy? I’ve had three and they have all lasted at least seven years. Interested in what I should look out for.
 

New2water

LifeTime Supporter
Jun 28, 2011
78
Stockton, CA
Wondering what happened to your kreepy? I’ve had three and they have all lasted at least seven years. Interested in what I should look out for.
There were a bunch of problems e.g. its footpad wears off and needs to be replaced annually, the pleated seals lasts no more than 2 seasons, the flapper stops flapping without anything being stuck in it and most commonly, it often stops moving and I have to play with the water inlet valves until I can find a setting that can get it moving again. The older model was more durable but the new ones are flimsy.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: Etchase

New2water

LifeTime Supporter
Jun 28, 2011
78
Stockton, CA
I've been convinced by responses to my query about suction cleaners to go for a robotic cleaner. I have an outlet within 50 ft of the farthest end of the pool and intend to leave the cleaner in the pool all the time .
All I need is a model that will:
a- clean the whole pool including the walls to waterline,
b- is well built (reliable),
c- has filters to catch sand/small particles,
d- doesn't tangle the power cord (is that called swivel mechanism?),
e- doesn't flip over its back,
f- can be programmed to run once a week or 3 times a week.
I don't need remote control.
The robot cleaner manufacturers have done a great job confusing the average consumer with so many brands and models. Marina has Maytronics Dolphin Nautilus with Clever Clean spacial for $579. The main thing it is missing is swivel mechanism for the cable otherwise I would've ordered it.
Which other model would you recommend for my modest requirements?
 
  • Like
Reactions: setsailsoon

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
23,741
Laughlin, NV
Maytronics Active 20/S200 will do all that.

You will need to work out the power issue. An outlet 50 feet away will be an issue. Be very careful using an extension cord for the power supply. Be absolutely sure the power supply can not ever be pulled into the pool. It should also be protected from sun, rain, etc.
 
  • Like
Reactions: New2water

Bvacchiano

Well-known member
Apr 6, 2018
220
Sugar Land, Texas
I have the Pentair Racer. It works great. I leave it in the pool 24/7 and it cleans twice a day. I do like it. I want something to leave in my pool at all times if I want and not have a cord running across my patio. All I need is for somebody to trip and bring a limb. Yes it needs an extra pump but I don’t see it as a big deal. I have a 5 yr warranty on it. When it breaks I’ll get a new one.
I’m sure robots are nice but I personally think this is over blown.
Regardless u will be brushing the walls manually.
 

New2water

LifeTime Supporter
Jun 28, 2011
78
Stockton, CA
Maytronics Active 20/S200 will do all that.

You will need to work out the power issue. An outlet 50 feet away will be an issue. Be very careful using an extension cord for the power supply. Be absolutely sure the power supply can not ever be pulled into the pool. It should also be protected from sun, rain, etc.
Thank you. My outlet is 50ft from the farthest end of the pool and 15 ft from the nearest end. I think it will reach.
The S200 is advertised at $849 with Marina. Dohney's Discovery looks almost identical but not sure if it's the same. The new one is at $749 and a discounted return is $609.99. Is there a difference between these 2 models other than Discovery having 60ft cable?
 
Last edited:

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
23,741
Laughlin, NV
Did you call Marina for that price?

If you buy over the internet the units have a very short warranty period. That is why Marina only does phone sales to get the full Maytronics warranty.