The best inground pool cleaner is, without a doubt, a robotic pool cleaner. The DOLPHIN Nautilus CC Supreme is an excellent example of how far these robots have come in 2022. It can scrub your entire 50-foot pool, including the floor, walls and waterline at an average cost of $.05 cents per hour in as fast as 1.5 hours, using Quick Mode, or as long as 3.5 hours in Enhanced Mode. Standard cleaning time is 2.5 hours. It also has WiFi, able to be controlled by your smartphone. And that’s the quick summary of the Nautilus CC Supreme, one of the best inground robotic pool cleaners available.
Best Inground Pool Cleaners / Pool Robots
Let’s compare two of the most advanced inground pool cleaning robots from Maytronics, the manufacturer behind the majority of the top rated pool cleaners. Their Dolphin line is engineered for homeowners. They also make commercial pool cleaners. You’ll notice a lot of Dolphin models are the most beloved by consumers. Polaris is another great brand to consider. The Dolphin Sigma is one of the newer models, packed with some impressive features, like 3x high-grade motors, Smart Navigation 3.0, four brushes, and a 3-Axis gyroscope for precise movement & control, just to name a few.
Zodiac G3 : Inexpensive Inground Pool Cleaner
Suction Side-Ceaner : Cleans floors, steps, and wall, up to waterline.
The G3 is another good budget option for your inground pool. It’s designed to work most efficiently with low speed pumps. It cleans everything up to the waterline. Don’t expect this to be as effective as robotic pool cleaner like the Dolphin Sigma, but it’s a great alternative.
- Quiet, powerful suction cleaner / Works best with low-speed pumps
- Cleans small and medium-sized debris and cleans floor, walls and steps of your entire pool.
- FlowKeeper Valve automatically regulates water flow to maintain peak cleaning performance even with lower horsepower pumps.
- Wheel Deflector for movement around tight corners.
- Scuff-resistant Long-Life Hoses eliminate scuffs on all pool surfaces.
- 36-Fin Disc increases adhesion to pool surface and avoids getting hung-up on lights, drains covers, fittings and other pool features.
VIDEO | An Overview of the Dolphin Sigma Pool Cleaner
Save Time / Efficient Inground Pool Cleaners
Not all pool cleaners are created equal. there are many options when choosing the right inground pool cleaner for your specific needs. Technology has advanced rapidly in the past two years, especially when it comes to robotic cleaners, whether for your pool, home floors or your lawn. There seems to be a dedicated robot for a range of cleaning tasks. Personally, my feeling is that if you own an inground pool you’d be silly not to invest in a robotic pool cleaner to free up your time to do more important things. Let’s be honest, having a clothes washer and dryer isn’t optional for most people, nor is having a dishwasher so if you own a pool why wouldn’t you own a robotic pool cleaner?
Even if you’re on a tight budget, there’s an option for you. The price range is from $400 to $1900. But don’t worry, I also recommend some other less expensive inground pool cleaners to give you some alternatives options.
An inground pool cleaner is simply a tool to make your life easier, and in my opinion, an excellent investment because they will save you a lot of time and stress. In this article we review some of the best inground pool cleaners available.
Intro | Best Inground Pool Cleaner
Write down a list of all the exciting activities you want to enjoy over the summer. I guarantee cleaning your swimming pool won’t be one of them. Unfortunately, it will need to be done on a regular basis but in this day of advanced robotic technology, it means you don’t have to do the scrubbing yourself.
Investing in a robotic pool cleaner means you can spend your time doing things you enjoy rather than resenting having purchased a pool every time you have to clean it. We have washing machines and clothes dryer so we don’t have to clean our clothes manually. Would you give up your dishwasher? Think of an automatic robotic pool cleaner with the same mindset. They are well worth the money.
- Dolphin Nautilus CC Plus with CleverClean — 99996403-PC
- Dolphin Nautilus CC with CleverClean — 99996113-US
- Dolphin Premier
- Dolphin Triton Plus with PowerStream — 99996212-US
Dolphin Nautilus CC Plus Review
with CleverClean technology. Best inground pool cleaner in terms of features, quality, affordability and overall value. Yes, this truly is a fantastic pool robot worth your money.
- Top-Filter access allows for extremely easy filter cleaning.
- CleverClean Technology cleans the floor, walls, and waterline.
- Extra-Large filter capacity means fewer filter cleanings!
- Maytronics patented floating, swivel cable ensures optimal, tangle-free pool coverage.
- Easy Fix modular technology.
- 360˚ suction, the Nautilus PLUS with CleverClean filters the water while it collects debris in its self-contained filter, so you can reduce the need to backwash your pool filter by as much as 30%.
- 2 Year Warranty.
- Patented swivel cable helps prevent tangling
- Scrubs, vacuums and filters all pool surfaces in just 2.5 hours
- Once they are submerged in water they expand back to their normal shape
- Weekly Timer
First things first. Let me just say that the the Dolphin 99996403-PC Nautilus Plus might be fairly new, but it’s the number one rated robotic pool cleaner in the world. If you want the best pool cleaner robot you can stop reading now. We’re about to back it up by looking at some of the mind-blowing features built into it.
Watch this VIDEO and see it in action | Nautilus cc Plus
If it’s got ‘Plus’ in the product name you know it’s only going to mean one thing. Everything about the pool cleaner robot will be bigger. For example, the filter sitting on the unit is so big you won’t need to empty it out for weeks. CleverClean technology will grab debris from every inch of your large pool too. It will hit all the walls, floors, coves, and the waterline.
It’s frustrating backwashing your pool filter, but it’s a job you can’t afford to ignore. At least the new Nautilus Plus means you’ll need to do it roughly 30 percent less often than before. You can thank the 360 degree suction built into this model. It’s going to collect a tremendous amount of debris. A pleated polyester fiber will handle the fine filtration, plus you’ve also got a mesh screen to deal with coarse debris like leaves.
Robotic pool cleaners wouldn’t be able to do anything without great software. The Dolphin Nautilus Plus really does take things to the next level. From the moment it’s dropped into your pool it will begin scanning the size, shape, and dimensions. It will then work out the most energy-efficient route to take when you switch it on. You won’t save lots of money because they’re already so cheap.
Read our indepth Review of the Nautilus CC Plus and Nautilus CC.
Dolphin Nautilus CC Review / 99996113-US
with intelligent CleverClean technology. Best inground pool cleaner.
- Refined, streamlined and improved for the modern age.
- 50% lighter, Large capacity Top load filtration, weekly timer, active brush and latest navigation system for complete pool coverage
- Thoroughly cleans the floor, walls and up to the waterline
- Clever Clean Technology that systematically scans your pool to determine most efficient path, regardless of shape or surface resulting in clean pool every time
- Active brush for effective scrubbing and cleaning
- Easy to clean Top Load filter basket that captures debris and filters water
Note : The original Dolphin Nautilus (99996323) remains one of the best selling inground pool cleaners. This is classic pool cleaner and the updated CleverClean model is even better.
The Dolphin Nautilus with CleverClean might not be brand new, but it’s still one of the best models you’ll find on the market. Due to the fact it’s been out for a while, you’ll be able to pick it up for a superb price. Do you know what really old models used to look like? This one is 50 percent lighter, which goes to show you how fast technology evolves.
If you wanted to scrub a pool clean you would have to get on your hands and knees to attack the tiles. You’ll miss 90 percent of a pool if you do it manually, so Dolphin tried to do something a little different. The best pool cleaner robot only moves at a certain speed, but they’ve included an active scrubbing brush. It moves at twice the speed of the unit itself, so your tiles will end up sparkling.
It’s smaller than the Dolphin Nautilus Plus, but the cable is still 50 feet long. The outlet could be 10 feet away from the pool, so it’s safe to say it will tackle pools 40 feet long. Even if you own a large pool it will be able to complete a cycle in 2 hours. CleverClean technology will help it find the quickest route straight away.
The best pool cleaner robots will be able to stay submerged in the water non-stop. It’s not worth it when a single cycle takes a few hours, but let’s say you have no other choice. You might be spending a few months in your summer cabin. An energy efficient industry-leading weekly timer allows you to clean the pool even when you’re not at home.
Dolphin Premier Review
Wonderful build quality and advanced features makes this a great choice for best inground pool cleaner. A little more expensive than other models but if you have the budget for it, well worth it.
- Navigation: Microprocessor controlled SmartNav learns the optimal path to clean your pool.
- Logic: Calculates optimal pattern for faster cleaning & improved efficiency.
- Propulsion: HyperGrip rubber tracks improve power delivery and control.
- Capabilities: Vacuums leaves, debris, pollen & green algae.
- Energy efficiency Reduces energy costs up to 90% over AC powered cleaners.
- Surfaces: Power scrubs and vacuums doors, steps, walls, and water line.
- Dual ballasts: Delivers superior agility, maneuverability & climbing performance.
- Micron rating: 2 micron – removes the smallest particles, even green algae.
- Air sensor: Learns water line elevation for superior water line cleaning.
- Filtration rate: Micro filters 75 gallons per minute for remarkable water quality.
✓ You can also purchase a pool caddy for this cleaner which will come in handy for storage, transportation and organization.
A Dolphin Premier inground robotpool cleaner is special if you care about the environment. They carefully selected an eco-friendly DC motor up to 87 percent more energy efficient than older models. It’s a pretty good way to save yourself money too. Multiple cartridges will let you catch a lot more debris, so your pool will need less chemicals.
Ask manufacturers about the greatest invention they’ve ever seen in the industry. The average person will expect them to come up with a tech-savvy feature, but you could argue it’s the 360 degree swivel cable. It allows the best pool cleaner robots to move around without getting tangled up.
VIDEO | A Closer Look at the Dolphin Premier
You can’t say the Dolphin Premier isn’t efficient when it’s cleaning up. It has dual scrubbing brushes built into it, whereas a lot of models only have one. It essentially gets rid of twice as much dirt and debris, but that’s not all. Once the robot has scrubbed the surfaces all the rubbish will be automatically vacuumed up. Luckily, it holds an oversized bag to handle it all.
Look at the new Dolphin Premier carefully and you’ll notice it doesn’t have any wheels. If not, how does it get around the pool? It’s been designed with special HyperGrip rubber tracks. It will be able to stick to steep walls while staying agile at the same time. The tracks will give you extra advantages too. For example, when it’s moving around it can’t be knocked over.
Review : Dolphin Triton Plus with PowerStream
Best inground pool cleaner robot with an extra level of intelligence. (model : 99996212-US)
Now the Triton Plus is available with or without WiFi, enabling you to control it to your smartphone.
- PowerStream Technology – enhanced pin-point turning and climbing abilities for a deeper clean
- MyDolphin – Allows bluetooth remote control capabilities using your smartphone
- Wall Climbing and Cleaning Scrubs floor and walls, removes algae and bacteria
- Weekly Timer with Industry-leading energy efficiency and 2 hour cycle time
- Active Brushing – Large Active Scrubbing Brush Spins at 2X the speed of the robot to power through debris
- Filtration – Extra-Large easy clan net basket + choice of ultra-fine (Top access)
We’ve not actually talked about how you empty robotic pool cleaners once they’re full. Most of the newer models will have a cartridge on the top of the unit (as opposed to underneath it), which makes a massive difference. The Dolphin Triton Plus only weighs 17 pounds, so the free water release system means it feels like a feather when you lift it out of the pool.
Dolphin decided to include PowerStream technology inside their Triton Plus robotic cleaner. Once it touches the walls of your pool it’s not coming off, plus it’s designed for enhanced pinpoint turning anywhere in the pool. The technology allows you to clean your entire pool in an hour (quick cycle), or you can choose the two hour option if you want a deeper clean.
If you use the MyDolphin app you’ll be able to control the best pool cleaner robot through your smartphone. It’s particularly useful when you want to focus your attention towards a specific area. You can use it in pools up to 50 feet long (60 feet cable), and advanced anti-tangle software will prevent the cable from causing any issues.a
It’s nice owning a quality pool cleaner robot, but it feels like they’re so advanced you need to be a rocket scientist to fix it. The Dolphin Triton Plus works in the exact opposite way. Easy fix modular technology will allow you to repair it yourself. Disconnect the broken part and replace it with a new one within seconds.
Read our indepth review of the Dolphin Triton Plus or the regular Triton model.
Swimming Pool Owners Need To Save More Energy
The world is faced with a couple of gigantic problems at the moment. First of all, it’s running out of fresh drinking water. There is a large amount of water on earth, but roughly 96.5 percent of it is saltwater. That means we have 3.5 percent freshwater, but don’t get too excited yet because it gets a lot worse. 68 percent of our freshwater is trapped in glaciers and icecaps.
30 percent of our freshwater can be found in underground aquifers, but they’re running out. In fact, they’ve reached the point of no return. Scientists predict only 0.3 percent of our freshwater lies in rivers, lakes, and swamps.
We’ve touched on the fact our water problem is scary, but our fossil fuel one is dangerous too. You’ve seen an increase in the number of natural disasters over the last couple of years (I’m sure you watch TV). Do you believe global warming is real, or are we delusional?
At this moment in time, we have a huge energy problem that isn’t going away. I wanted to quickly explain the dangers before moving onto the real topic, which is the ways in which the best pool vacuum robots are helping our planet.
Energy Efficient Benefits Of Robotic Cleaners
The reason we talked about our energy problems is because lots of pool owners feel guilty. Every single one of them love swimming in their back garden, but those with common sense will know it’s not doing the planet any favors. It’s a first world problem we can hopefully settle today. We’re going to do it by looking at why the best pool cleaner robot will actually help out:
Robotic Cleaners Are Self-Sustaining: When you own a pressure side cleaner your swimming pool will be powering the unit. The same is true when you use a suction side cleaner, which will power your unit in a different way. In other words, your pool needs to be switched on if you want to clean it.
The best pool vacuum robot will never need to rely on your pump, booster pump, or filter to work. The only downside is the fact you’ll need to plug it into an outlet. It’s self-sustaining and you can clean your pool when it’s switched off.
Newer Models Hardly Draw Any Energy: It’s extremely hard to figure out how much it costs to clean your pool using a pressure or suction side cleaner. If you wanted to work out the total cost you would need to take into account the price of operating your entire pool.
Thankfully, there is a quick way to show you robotic cleaners hardly cost anything. Here are two items you’ll normally need depending on the system you use, so let’s look at how much energy each one needs to operate:
- Booster Pump = 1,000 Watts
- Robotic Cleaner = 180 Watts
The robotic cleaner requires 820 less watts to operate, and that is before you take into account the energy a swimming pool will use when it’s switched on. Keep in mind, the numbers we’ve used today are only examples. Do you want to know how much you’ll need to spend when you use the best pool vacuum robot? On average, it’s about 15 cents per cycle. You couldn’t get any more energy efficient if you tried.
Maximum Suction Power Improves Speed: A robotic cleaner will bypass the filtration system in your swimming pool, which will improve the overall speed. Hundreds of gallons of water will pass through the built-in circulation system, and it will pick up debris as it moves around the pool. You’ll notice the best robot cleaners have two speeds:
- 2-Hour Cycle
- 1-Hour Quick Cycle
If an appliance finishes quicker it will draw less power, therefore it’s automatically more energy efficient. While we’re on the subject of speed, I’d like to touch on cables too. The top robotic cleaners will have anti-tangle swivel cables or software, whereas basic pressure and suction side cleaners might not. If something gets stuck it will use even more energy (it’s impossible to calculate how much).
Technology Works Out The Best Routes: Even if you have a robotic pool cleaner it could still be wasting energy. Modern models are capable of scanning your pool once they’re submerged in the water. It’s not just the size and shape they’ll be able to read. Advanced software allows them to know where slopes, coves, ladders, steps, and other things are too.
It takes all of the ‘big data’ and will use algorithms to work out the most energy efficient way to travel around your pool at high speed. The software will even know where it’s been, so it won’t waste time cleaning the same area over and over again.
You Won’t Need As Many Pool Chemicals: I doubt many people who don’t own a swimming pool know how they actually work. You don’t just pour chlorine into the water and hope for the best. Let’s forget about chlorine and focus on a few other chemicals:
Algaecides – It helps to prevent algae from growing in your pool, will kill it when it does, and will stop it from returning.
Clarifiers – These can take tiny particles and turn them into bigger ones, which will help your filters make the pool cleaner.
Enzymes – Oils, odors, and scum will be removed from your pool once the enzymes break down all forms of non-living contaminates.
Sequestering Agents – Trace metals from your water will be locked up in a solution, which will stop them from staining the surfaces in your pool.
Phosphate Removers – Did you know phosphates are the top food choice for algae? If you can take away the food source it won’t be able to survive.
I could keep running down a huge list of chemicals, but I’m sure you get the point. Your swimming pool uses a lot of them on a constant basis. They cost a lot of money and some are more expensive than others, so you want to keep as many chemicals in your pool as possible. The best pool vacuum robot offers better water circulation, so you’ll waste less chemicals when cleaning your pool.
It means you won’t need to keep topping it up with chemicals on a regular basis. Also, you won’t need to keep as many containers in your garage. If you don’t store chemicals correctly it will endanger the environment, so in an ideal world you want them to stay in your pool for the longest duration of time possible before they need to be replaced.
It Extends The Life Of Your Equipment: It would be great if your pool equipment lasted forever, but it’s only a matter of time before something goes wrong. If you use the pool more often, you’ll need to get it repaired (or carry out tasks on your own) more often. For example, without a robotic cleaner you’ll have to do much more backwashes. It’s just common sense, right?
Swimming pool repairmen don’t magically appear at your door, although it would be great if they did. They’ll need to drive vans releasing harmful emissions into the atmosphere. The tools they’ll need to repair your pool will consume a lot of energy too. A robot pool cleaner won’t need to use your pump or filtration system, so nothing will break down as often. It’s what you’d call an instant energy saver.
You Don’t Need To Buy Extra Equipment: This relates to the last topic we talked about, but it’s slightly different. When your pool equipment is broken you might not be able to get it repaired (quick fix). You’ll need to get it replaced before you can go for a few laps in the pool again.
These parts are manufactured in factories where they’ll use large amounts of energy to keep everything running day and night. Even the fuel they’ll use to ship products to your house will waste energy. It’s better if you can avoid replacing your swimming pool parts in the first place.
Swimming Pool Maintenance Tips
If you take nuclear submarines out of the equation, I think the best pool vacuum robot is the most advanced piece of technology you’ll use under the water. It definitely sits close to the top of the list at the very least. That being said, it’s not going to look after the entire swimming pool for you. There are other maintenance tips you’ll want to know about. We’re going to run through a quick list of the crucial ones that could come as a surprise.
A robotic pool cleaner isn’t a nuclear sub, but it’s pretty special. Combine it with these maintenance tips and your pool will be in safe hands:
You Might Still Need To Scrub – A robotic pool cleaner is supposed to clean your entire swimming pool. It will get rid of large objects like leaves. Your tiles will end up shining too, and they’ve even included active brushes to make sure it happens. That doesn’t mean you’ll never need to get down on your hand and knees to scrub dirty tiles.
It’s possible you’ll find yourself getting your pumice stone out every now and again. It all depends on the algae build-up at the sides of your pool, which might never appear if you’re lucky. A wise man (or woman) will always look for growths every few weeks just in case.
Please Note: It doesn’t really take too much elbow grease to remove algae growths. With that in mind, be careful when you’re scrubbing your tiles. You don’t want to damage them because they’ll cost a lot to replace.
Turning Your Filter On And Off – Once you start using the best pool automatic pool cleaner robot you won’t need to backwash your system too much. The robot will collect most of the debris, which is absolutely fantastic. You’ll save lots of water and chemicals at the same time. There are three types of pool water filters:
- Diatomaceous Earth (DE)6 Filters
- Sand Filters
- Cartridge Filters
So you’ll get to save diatomaceous earth, sand, or cartridges too. Unfortunately, it’s not what you should be worried about. To maintain your pool correctly you might backwash it twice every month. Your filtration system will still be switched on during the season when you’re using the pool, which is where the problem lies.
Focus your attention towards how often you switch your filter on and off if you want to maintain your pool properly. Do it too many times in quick succession and the filter’s mechanics will begin to crack. It will cost a good amount of money to have it repaired. Ideally, you should be letting your filter run for around 6 hours per day.
Testing The Chemicals In Your Pool – You already know a robotic pool cleaner will reduce the amount of chemicals you’ll need to keep replacing, but it’s not where the story ends when it comes to maintaining your pool. It would be silly to assume your water is fine because you own one of the best pool cleaner robots.
You’ll need to test the chemicals in your water regularly, which is pretty easy no matter who you are. All you need to buy is a testing kit and you’re ready to go. Start by combining a sample of your water with a special solution they give you. It should take a few minutes until the water begins to change color. Once it does you can compare it to a chart to determine whether or not you’ll need to add anything to the pool.
Do you have a few minutes to spare at the moment? You can guesstimate how well your swimming pool is doing without buying a testing kit. Here are the things you can see when everything is properly balanced:
- The Water Should Look Crystal Clear
- There Shouldn’t Be Any Weird Odors
- Little Residue Should Be On Your Skin
Please Note: You can use this test to guess if your pool is okay, but you will need to check if the chemicals are balanced the right way in the future. Guessing if everything is fine could eventually lead to problems.
Giving Your Swimming Pool A Shock – We’re going to assume you’re a master by now when it comes to swimming pool chemicals, but it could still turn cloudy for a couple of reasons that aren’t your fault. There might be a sudden downpour where you live even in the middle of summer. It could rain so heavily it will dilute your chlorine. Also, when it’s boiling hot outside the UV rays from the sun will eat your chlorine up.
You won’t want to go swimming in a cloudy pool, so you’ll need to shock it. When it reverts back to its normal color it won’t look like you’ve just thrown a massive pool party. It’s simple to do if you follow a few basic steps.
Start by diluting 3x5 times the amount of chlorine you would normally use in water. Carefully (and slowly) pour it into the return line until it filters throughout your pool. Finally, slowly refill your pool with water over time.
Please Note: The entire point of these tips is to help you maintain your pool correctly, so understand you should be shocking it at least twice a year anyway. If you do it too much it will damage your pool, so don’t go overboard.
Keeping The Water Level In Check – Have you ever noticed how much water leaves your pool when the kids are doing cannonballs all afternoon? The exact opposite happens when there is an avalanche of heavy rainfall. The best pool cleaner robot will still work when your water level isn’t correct, but you’ll need to do something about it. In case you’re wondering, your water should be sitting roughly halfway up the skimmer opening.
You’re left with a couple of options depending on the water level of your swimming pool:
- Too Little – Top it up with your hose
- Too Much – Rent a pump and drain it out
Renting a pump to drain water out should only be used as a last resort. The weight of a submersible pump could damage the surface of your pool depending on the material, plus it’s going to cost money. It’s usually better to leave it unless the excess water is going to turn your garden into Atlantis.
Winterizing The Pool Prevents Damage – Sadly, swimming pool maintenance doesn’t end when the sun disappears. Some will argue it’s even more important winterizing it before the bad weather arrives, or you’ll end up in trouble once it starts to get warm. To be fair, it’s not actually a lot of work and you’ll only need to do few things to get the job done:
- Check The Chemical Balance Using A Testing Kit
- Blow Excess Water Out Of The Plumbing Lines
- Throw A Suitable Cover Over Your Swimming Pool
You can keep an eye on the pool during the winter months if it’s not freezing cold. It’s worth it if you have a few minutes to spare at the weekend. You don’t want to whip your cover off in spring only to discover you’ve had a leak the entire time.
Please Note: Occasionally, you’ll need to carry out other jobs too, which might slip your mind. A perfect example would be disconnecting the pool heater. You should seriously consider hiring a professional to winterize the pool for you, and bring them back to prepare it for the swimming season too.
Don’t Forget About Your Surroundings – Everyone seems to forget about the area surrounding your pool. If you don’t look after the decking properly you wouldn’t want to go into the pool. You couldn’t even reach it without slipping on grime. Start hiring a pressure water to clean the area around your swimming pool when you’re using it. Remember, sweep the decking with a brush first to get rid of all the loose dirt and leaves. If not, they’ll end up in your pool.
It’s essential you do this regularly for two completely different reasons. The first one is aesthetics, because you want the area around your pool to look gorgeous. The second reason is more important than anything else because it’s related to safety. You don’t want anyone to fall and hurt themselves (or even worse).
An Inground Pool Cleaner Robot Is Arguably A Necessity
When it’s finally hot enough to jump into the water you’ll want to start swimming immediately. A large percentage of people probably spend more time caring for their pools, which is extremely sad when you think about it. Maybe it would be different if they owned the best pool vacuum robot. You won’t regret buying one in a million years.
Lastly, you’ll need to pick the model you want. You could read every feature packed into the products, but there is an easier solution. Read all the unbiased reviews on Amazon now. You’ll come to a final decision in no time.