Best Above Ground Pool Vacuums in 2022
If you are blessed with a swimming pool in your home, you live for summer.
But, you may find it troublesome cleaning above the ground swimming pool, because the manual cleaning process is so tedious. After all, you have a pool so you can relax. However, some people prefer to buy a reliable above-ground automated vacuum cleaner to tackle this situation.
A pool cleaner, even a high-end one, comes at a fraction of the price compared to the overall investment of a swimming pool or hiring a pool service to vacuum your pool.
Choosing the best above ground pool vacuum cleaners can be challenging, given the plethora of choices available in the market. While pool vacuums are a bit different than shop vacs or robot vacuums, they help make your life cleaner.
Therefore, this list of top above ground pool cleaner reviews allows you to pick a model that has performance, price, and other aspects of cleaning according to your needs and requirements.
Without further ado, let’s get into the list of high-quality above ground pool cleaners.
Best Above Ground Pool Vacuum
Here’s a quick comparison chart for you to check out the models we selected for you.
|Zodiac Ranger W01698||Suction-Based||9.7/10|
|Hayward 900 Wanda||Suction-Based||9.5/10|
|Polaris Vac Sweep||Robotic||8.5/10|
We did extensive research to select only the worthy models for this list. Plus, we explained the pros and cons of each model to make it easy for you to choose the model that suits your needs and budget. All of these vacuums were able to pass our strict criteria that make this list valuable for you.
So, what’s the best model? Let’s find out…
1. Dolphin Escape Robotic Cleaner
Maytronics’ Dolphin Escape is the top pick as an above ground pool cleaner in 2022. It leaves your pool sparkling clean by collecting all the macro and micro-debris. The deep-cleaning performance makes it worthy of your investment.
Dolphin Escape features a patented HyberBrush scrubbing mechanism that makes cleaning quick compares to most competing brushes, picking the toughest sediment and particles with its vacuuming power. What keeps the vacuum intact with the surface is it’s bulldozer-like rubber wheel tracks which is a huge improvement over the traditional wheel-based cleaners which not only makes the cleaner efficient but allows it to climb the walls for better cleaning.
Similarly, Dolphin Escape comes with SmartNav 2.0 scanning system that allows it to efficiently cleaning while covering the whole pool surface. In addition, an oversized filter cartridge and fine filters ensure utmost cleanliness and grab anything that comes insight.
This cleaner is our top pick, In fact, many customers said they are satisfied with the performance of this pool cleaner.
Overall, Dolphin Escape is a state-of-the-art design and comes with a handful of hi-tech features and a full-year warranty allowing you to get a tremendous bang for the buck.
- Sleekly designed
- Computer-controlled navigation and login
- Dual 24 DC motors and way better than AC-powered cleaners
- Simple installation
- Fine particles filters are sold separately
2. Zodiac Ranger W01698
Another great Automatic Above-Ground Pool cleaner we have on our list is Zodiac Ranger W01698. Pool owners looking for an easy to operate pool cleaner will love Zodiac Ranger W01698 because it’s streamlined design allows it to clean all types of dirt, leaves, and other debris left over from winter.
What makes it a more suitable cleaner is that it comes pre-assembled, requiring you to only attach the hose to start cleaning.
The Zodiac Ranger W01698 features smart-looking AG Disc diaphragm to navigate efficiently by avoiding the hindrances by steps or corners. Plus, this pool cleaner doesn’t require extra plumbing around your pool, and the Flowkeeper valve in this cleaner keeps the water flow subtly.
In this list of automated cleaners, this one is the closest competitor. But we noticed some pool owners reported having to supervise the cleaner for lack of complete coverage.
- Quieter cleaner
- Convenient skimmer connection for hose
- Only one moving part
- 32′ hose standard a liability for larger pool owners
- Requires declogging after picking up larger debris
3. Hayward 900 Wanda
The Hayward 900 Wanda is an advanced above ground pool cleaner but it looks to make some people confuse about it. Plus, lower price tag and strong cleaning performance make it a strong contender.
The Hayward 900 Wanda features a turbine cleaner to clean above-ground pools of various shapes and sizes. Together, Hayward’s SmartDrive program steering system and its ability to use a pool’s existing filtration system makes it a real money saver.
Hayward 900 Wanda is super easy to install and it runs quietly but gives improved water flow to easily move to the bottom of the pool. Another nice feature of Hayward 900 Wanda is the outside bumper ring, to move the vacuum away from walls to quickly get back to the programmed path.
Overall, Hayward 900 Wanda is ideal for budget-conscious, DIY, and first-time buyers. But, you might need to get a leaf catcher, and a stronger pump as well.
- User-friendly design
- Smooth navigation and better coverage
- Good for smaller pools
- Pumps loses strength when leaves, debris start accumulating
- Issues surrounding ripped liners
4. Pentair K50600 Kreepy Krauly
Here we have Pentair K50600 Kreepy Krauly a pool cleaner that comes with the hydraulic design and a circular disc at the bottom that allows the vacuum to give average performance and reliability.
The Pentair K50600 Kreepy Krauly has the ability to surface skim debris during cleaning. But, you almost need perfect tool conditions without obstacles to get such results.
Pentair K50600 Kreepy Krauly is a vacuum by a well-established brand. But it is not yet capable to compete with advancing robotics technology, and offering hassle-free maintenance that consumers are striving for.
- Economical choice
- Adequate for ligher use
- Struggles cleaning around ladders
- Shorter hose length for cleaning medium-sized, larger pools
- Very heavy and loud
- Initial set-up problematic
5. Aquabot APRVJR Aboveground Pool Vac
Aquabot APRVJR Aboveground Pool Vac claims to cover any type of pool surface without using hoses. This cleaner comes with 40′ cable and reasonable power specifications that make this rover do a really good job.
But, it has some problems. Although it comes with a one-year warranty the additional parts cost too much. Plus, the Aquabot APRVJR Aboveground Pool Vac is susceptible to cord entanglements that limit its coverage without regular manual intervention.
Overall, Aquabot APRVJR Aboveground Pool Vac requires more resting to be in the top recommendation.
- Picks up all kind of dirt
- Good for smaller pools
- Poor suction
- Deceptive warranty
- Movement is often haphazard
6. Dolphin Nautilus Robotic Pool Cleaner
The Dolphin Nautilus Robotic Pool Cleaner with a lighter and exquisite design that makes it perfect equipment for larger pools. The Dual scrubbing brush is attached to a second rotary which makes cleaning your pool a cinch even if it’s 50 feet in size.
It’s a tough automatic pool cleaner that comes with a large filtration basket to keep all dirt, particles, and other debris trapped in it and never let them escape.
The Dolphin Nautilus Robotic Pool Cleaner is the latest in pool cleaning technology that can scale your walls vertically and can tackle the most stubborn debris. The bulldozer style wheels make sure the cleaner has firmly gripped the surface that makes climbing up and down a breeze.
With a two-hour cleaning cycle, it operates almost anywhere in the pool and the advanced timer allows you to schedule the cleaner for a specific day or time to clean. It doesn’t use filter bags so cleaning canister and removing it is very easy.
- Tangle-free vacuum operation
- Works silently
- Advanced filtration system
- A bit heavy
7. Polaris Vac Sweep 280 Pressure Side Pool Cleaner
Polaris is a lightweight and versatile pool cleaner that is popular among ground swimming pool owners.
It’s effective for all kinds of pools and has a three-wheel base allowing the vacuum to navigate easily and climb up the walls and stairs.
Similarly, the Polaris has no problems cleaning fiberglass and vinyl surfaces. It lets the filter and the skimmer free to get rid of any containment and the patented jet sweep assembly that blows water against the wall.
- Comparatively affordable
- Quiet operation
- Powerful cleaner
- Gets tangled up if poorly set
8. Intex Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump
Intex Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump is the finest pool cleaner that makes the pool spotless and dirt-free, and refreshing as possible.
Fortunately, Intex Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump is 16-inch, 110-120V with GFCI is perfect for the pool cleaning. It uses a sand filter pump that clears every water debris.
Some users tend to use chemicals for cleaning, but those who don’t use chemicals are increasing and this one cleans the pool without vacuums.
Ground Circuit Fault Interrupter that works like a circuit breaker in case of power faults to prevent accidents.
It offers top-notch filtration because ti comes with best natural filtration materials. It deals water from algae and softens it resulting in more refreshed and sanitized water. This cleaner comes with a 6-function control valve to filter, backwash and rinse, recirculate, drain, and close the system.
- Require minimal maintenance
- Has a one-day timer feature
- Naturally cleans the pool without using chemicals
- Very low maintenance
- 24-hour timer feature
- A natural way of achieving freshness
- Not easy to carry due to a bigger size
9. Pentair 360100 Kreepy Krauly Lil Shark Cleaner
Here we have Pentair 360100 that is a new and improved model.
No debris is spared from the dual-band bristles combined with a powerful vacuum that qualifies the cleaner to be a top-rated pool robot of 2021.
Pentair 360100 comes with 10-inch wide path to clean the pool quickly. Plus, the quick cleaning results in saving you some extra time.
You are going to love the programmed cleaning feature, Pentair 360100 will eat all the dirt and grime without missing a spot, and it’s efficient enough that it won’t leave behind multiple missed spots, unlike other robots. So with Pentair 360100, you get through cleaning quickly, freeing you some time than watching if your cleaner is doing the job right.
The Pentair 360100 has only one moving part, so operating is simple and no assembly required. Plus, the simple design of the cleaner is durable to withstand wear and tear for a long lifespan, so you can faithfully get this cleaner to clean your pool.
- No assembly required
- Good for Intex Pools
- Great for small-sized pools
- Struggles with Pool ladders
- Stick close to the walls while cleaning
10. XtremepowerUS Automatic Suction Cleaner
A swimming pool is a perfect spot in households to create a bond with family members and close friends during summers. But the more a pool is used, the most dirt, leaves, pebbles and other debris is accumulated in it which can be unsanitary. An automatic above ground pool vacuum can restore the pool’s water to its crystal clear state.
If you want versatility and professional cleaning experience, how about a pool cleaner doesn’t require any power source for it to operate. Yes, a green product which is XtremepowerUS Automatic Suction Vacuum-generic Climb Wall Pool Cleaner that comes with 10 hoses and can clean a pool of 30′.
This sweeper works without electricity and comes with silicone ripple cleaner for tile, vinyl, concrete, and fiberglass. It’s affordable and capable to deal with different kind of pool surfaces.
It also requires a minimum of a ¾ HP fuel pump if you are looking forward to maximum performance from this cleaner.
It features bumper straps for appropriate directional adjustments and rubber suction end that glides well across the surface of most pool interiors. But, it’s prone to get stuck in corners or shallow water.
Few faults it possesses include it’s louder which can be irritating but it gives better cleaning than hands.
- Simple installation
- Easy to use
- Noise-less operation
- Not good for hard debris
The decision-making process can be difficult for veterans or newbies due to limited knowledge. There are various factors to consider for a successful above ground pool cleaner purchase. You can only pick a decent model from the list above if you know about the important features a cleaner should possess.
These are the considerations for you to make the decision easier.
1. Cleaner Type
Not all above-ground cleaners are created equally. There is a different type of cleaners available including robotics-based cleaner that use software and microprocessor-controlled motors, suction-based vacuum cleaners, turbulence-based cleaners that apply pressure to dislodge dirt and debris before filtering them out.
It’s essential to maintain the hygiene of your swimming pool to prevent unnecessary infections. So keeping the sanitation of your pool sustained depends on the type of tool you use. These are the type of cleaners you can consider.
Suction Pool Vacuums
Also known as suction-side pool vacuums, these cleaners utilize the pool pump suction power in conjunction with the filtration pump to clean the swimming pool.
The suction pool vacuum operates on electricity and requires the pool pump to be running as it cleans the debris.
Suction-based pool vacuum cleaners require regular maintenance of the filter to give better results with cleaning. However, they are affordable and automatically operated cleaners.
Pressure Pool Vacuums
Also known as pressure-side pool cleaners. These pool cleaners are advanced and utilize pressure generated by water flow rather than using the pool pump.
Pressure Pool vacuums give quick cleaning because they are independent of using a pool filtration system for cleaning the debris.
These cleaners are equipped with a collection bag to keeping debris that makes the process faster, convenient, and you end up with less maintenance. Such features make these cleaners ideal for larger swimming pools.
Robotic Pool Cleaners
Robotic pool cleaners are modern, advanced machines that are intelligent enough to clean the swimming pool without your assistance and they don’t need power from the pool circulation mechanism to operate.
They are equipped with an internal collection bag which makes them capable to grab even the tiniest unwanted particle while cleaning the pool. Plus, they feature a small internal pump to reduce running cost and time.
Robotic cleaners are efficient regarding cleaning and power consumption. Plus, they bring some advanced features like scheduling, remote control, and even four-wheel drives.
Those of you not having a skimmer basket can leave it on the robotic cleaners because they are efficient to provide sufficient cleaning of the pool surfaces.
2. Swimming Pool Size and Shape
Swimming pool size matters when purchasing a cleaner because according to the size you need the power, and energy consumption to maintain your pool, as well as necessary cable length and pump strength for better results.
If you own a larger pool then robotic cleaners offer great flexibility with powerful brush heads and smart path technology but for the smaller-sized pool, you can get the job done with suction-based systems.
Similarly, if there are a lot of obstacles in your pool like steps, ladders, special contours, etc. then a robotic system claimed to be intelligent won’t perform as advertised. Many suction-based cleaners have only one moving part, which makes them suitable for non-standard pool shapes.
3. What is Filtration Rate?
The filtration rate describes the influence of the machine on water quality after cleaning is completed. A good benchmark for checking the filtration rate would be a seventy to seventy-five gallons per minute for most swimming pools.
4. Power Consumption
Maintenance costs vary depending upon the power consumption and operation time and it’s important to keep a balance between both to keep the costs low. For instance, robot cleaners like Dolphin and the Aquatbot offer 180 watts power which is obvious from such electronics and software. This is the type of tool you use for better results.
For pool suction-based systems produce generally less power, with the trade-off being longer cleaning cycles and, and sometimes, the introduction of a stronger pumping mechanism.
Weight and distribution of the machine
Automated above ground cleaners differentiate according to the maneuverability and stability. But you should get a solid construction machine that can withstand wear and tear for a long time.
Dirt and Debris to be Cleared
Above ground, the cleaner should be capable to collect leaves, dirt, and fine particles like sand, micro-debris, etc. But larger objects can create a problem as the cleaning area for different cleaners can be different. Similarly, a cleaner should have enough power to tackle heavy use, which makes robotic cleaners worthy. But, suction-based systems are not bad for cleaning up smaller elements, in fact, they shine for such tasks.
Ease of Use
Automated above ground cleaners should be easy to use, in fact, a robotic/automatic helper should take care of everything itself without bothering you.
No one likes the annoying chore of cleaning the pool manually after cleaning failure. Every machine has a breaking point and is not perfect. But, you can head to customer support if:
- Your cleaner sticks on the wall or ladder
- The cleaners lag or stop automatically
- The cleaner faces coverage issue without personal intervention
- The cleaner isn’t bidirectional
The price of an item depends if you are getting the additional hose, a stronger pump, an extended warranty or other parts and services with it.
If you get a decent product then don’t hesitate to spend a few extra bucks. Similarly, don’t get fooled by the latest features which may be unnecessary and offered at a steep premium.
Generally, robot cleaners are more expensive but more hassle-free and require less maintenance compared to suction-based cleaners where you have to regularly maintain them.
So that’s all for this guide of above ground pool cleaners. You have all the information to choose a model that suits your budget and requirements. The model we recommend is Dolphin Escape Robotic which is the best cleaner for the money.
While you are choosing a pool cleaner, you should look for the features that are closest for meeting your needs and evaluate the value/price trade-off.
Sometimes the manufacturer tends to send damaged products but you can leverage it by getting free shipping, additional parts, or extra discounts.
So now it will be easier for you to choose the pool pump cleaner from the list we have sensitized by highlighting important features.
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