You have two options. You can lay down on one of your reclining lawn chairs with your headphones in, a cold beverage on the side table, and some snacks on the way, ready to escape the worries of day to day life with a poolside snooze. Or, you can remove your skimmer basket (dead frogs included), hook up your manual pool vacuum and begin the tedious job of cleaning the debris from the bottom of your pool. Which, after a long day at work, would you choose?
When a pool owner is first introduced to the many steps of care necessary to properly maintain a body of water, they are sometimes overwhelmed by the amount of work pools can entail. One of the main concerns that they have includes the visual look of the pool, or cleanliness of the surface. Automatic pool cleaners offer a solution to those of us with limited amounts of time to spend working on our pools. While deciding to use an automatic pool cleaner seems to be the easy and obvious choice when time is limited, there are multiple types of cleaners from which consumers may choose. Let’s explore these options below.
This type of automatic pool cleaner is very common, and is usually considered a lower price point option. It includes a hose that attaches from the cleaner to the skimmer of your pool (some pools will have dedicated suction lines; however, it is most common to use these cleaners through your skimmer). The pool pump creates suction and the ability to vacuum with the cleaner is obtained. The pattern in which suction cleaners move is random throughout the pool. While these cleaners are able to catch smaller debris, they are sometimes limited in the size of debris that may travel through the cleaner head and hose. The debris is also transported to and stored inside the skimmer basket which must be emptied as needed. One thing to note is that if you are using the skimmer for your suction cleaner, you are losing a lot of its skimming capabilities while the cleaner is being used. A good thing about suction cleaners is that they are very simple to install for the do-it-yourself homeowner.
This type of automatic pool cleaner is popular in regions that have larger debris and bigger pools. The way that pressure-side cleaners work is that the hose connects to the return in the pool as well as the cleaner head. Most pressure-side cleaners work off of a booster pump, which is meant to give it more power to move throughout the pool. There are also some adjustments that may be made on the cleaner head to control how it moves through the water. With this type of cleaner, the debris is contained inside the cleaner head and allows for easy clean up by emptying a bag. This detachment from the pool filtration side also prevents the potential issue of a clogged skimmer which may occur with a suction-side cleaner. Also, because a pressure-side cleaner is connected to the return, it is distributing clean water throughout the pool that has just passed through the filtration system. This distribution of filtered water throughout the pool is helpful in more evenly mixing your chemicals through the water.
Robotic pool cleaners are at the top of the pricing structure when it comes to automatic pool cleaning; however, there are many reasons to consider this type. A robotic pool cleaner is just as it sounds-an automated robot that runs through your pool sucking up debris into its self-enclosed compartment. There are two types of debris catchers with these cleaners in the form of a bag or a filter element, depending on which brand you choose. These robotic pool cleaners run completely independent of your pool system so unlike suction and pressure-side cleaners, you may run a robotic pool cleaner while your pool pump is shut off. There have been many bells and whistles that have evolved in this category over the years such as remotes for controlled steering ability, multiple clean cycle settings, and hand carts for transportation and storage. This category continues to expand as it is the fastest growing category of pool cleaners today.
As homeowners we put in pools to swim, socialize, and enjoy the beautiful aesthetic addition to our backyard. Automatic pool cleaners have revolutionized the pool industry so that you may spend less time working on your pool than ever before. They allow you to protect your investment while doing less of the manual work yourself. You can talk to your local pool store about which automatic pool cleaner is right for your surface type, cleaning needs, & budget today!