Newbie - looking for cleaner advice


Active member
Jan 7, 2014
Sydney, Australia
OK - i've done the basic reading...

Pool - Concrete (plaster?) 50,000L with pebblecrete surface.
Its kidney shaped with the skimmer in the middle on the long straight side, the 2 returns push water almost parallel with the long straight side away from the skimmer. (hope that makes sense).
Brand spankers Astral Vitron 320 pump (multi speed), and Cantabric C280 sand filter (with some added DE love)

So pressure cleaners are out - no way to attach to the output, as its effectively a long "slit" in the wall (cut a round tube at an angle of 15degrees).

Suction or robotic then.

Its a pretty clean pool, direct sun 10-4pm, only gets a *small* (<20) leaves on a windy day & a bit of dirt. I've been able to keep it Dang clean with a weekly manual vac & usual skimming daily. The SWG is also quick to bring up FC levels on "normal" settings - so I assume not much organic matter is being introduced that I cant see too.

Do I need my walls scrubbed? If I get a floor cleaner - do i just manually scrub every now & then with a large plastic brush?
Thats my dilemma - wall & floor or just floor.

I've been recommended:
Floorcova Davey $ 1,127 (aussie paeso's)
Max 1 Astral $795


TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jun 7, 2011
Midland TX
In general, suction cleaners are the poorest performers, but sometimes work ok on small pools.

Dolphin makes some excellent robot cleaners and I've decided to go with one from them.


Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
In The Industry
Apr 1, 2007
Sebring, Florida
A 50,000l pool is small enough that a suction side should work well. That's closing in on the max size pool I would suggest for a suction cleaner (maybe 70,000 l) but will still be OK.

I would minimize the wall-climbing feature. It's OK, but a manual brush every now and then does just fine.

A robot will clean your pool faster and likely do a better job than the suction side but you will generally pay more money for it.

Here in the US $1,000 would be an adequate robot as opposed to a good suction side that you can get for maybe $500.

There is an article in Pool School.


LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2011
Friendswood, TX
I was not a fan of my PB provided suction cleaner (Navigator-Pro XL). Going through growing pains on how to use it during our SE Texas mast year-2012 (thousands of acorns) and sand residue from a new build caused more clogs than I could handle.
I was convinced the suction cleaners were Crud and decided a robot was the best alternative. But, after review, I just couldn't accept an electrical cord stretched across the deck and I didn’t like the price. So, I called Hayward and cried to them. They told me “bearings are prone to clogging from sand and acorns are a headache, just live with it” (like I didn’t know that). I didn’t like that Idea and figured, what the heck, I’ll open her up and modify the A-Frame bearings to a sealed type (reduce sand-binding). Well, that did help, but the biggest solution came after increasing the suction pressure just a tad higher than recommended (I realize I should have tried that first).
I’ve since went back to the original A-Frame bearings and added a $20 in-line filter (catches leaves before pump strainer). With the extra suction-pressure, that baby zings across the pool and inhales everything but my pool-loving Labrador. Been working like a champ for 14 months. Of course, the extra suction may increase wear on the parts, but replacement-parts are cheap and easy to install. For the price of most suction cleaners (about $300) and easy maintenance, I will now recommend the Navigator Pro XL. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it! Good luck


Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
May 19, 2010
Tucson, AZ
There are many discussions about various cleaners in the forum.

Seems that for suction cleaners the MX-8 and The Pool Cleaner are on the top of the list.


Active member
Jan 7, 2014
Sydney, Australia
yeah i've been doing some reading - but most of the models discussed seem to be US based & not available here.
So i'm just after some guidance on "features" i'll need & then go from there.

For the wall scrubbing - is it just done with the large plastic bristled brushes? (about 1.5-2ft wide)
Any need for a metal brush?
And how often (i guess it depends) - but what are the signs that I need to brush my walls?

Is it purely to remove any dust/dirt thats been trapped?


Aug 31, 2013
hi Nate

I'm in Sydney as well and just built a pool. I got my PB to supply a 'The Pool Cleaner' as they are rated highly here and now have a 6 year warranty in Aus.
You can pick them up from Swimart shops or any decent pool shop. Of the pool shops I spoke to they steered me away from the MX 8 due to reliabilty although for our PB that is their standard suction cleaner and they work well from what i heard.
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