Automatic Pool Cleaner Pros and Cons – Advantages and Disadvantages

Owning a pool in your backyard can provide you with fun times and lots of entertainment, but it also requires regular maintenance and cleaning to function properly. While professional cleaning services are always a viable solution, depending on what and how many services your pool requires, its cost will go up. So, a less costly and practical solution would be to use an automatic pool cleaner. If you’re not yet decided whether to acquire one or not, then this guide will provide you with the benefits and drawbacks of owning one.


Currently, on the market, there are 3 ways in which auto-cleaners can clean your pool: using a suction system, a pressure system, or robotic. While all three of them can do the same cleaning, how they clean, as well as what powers them differ from one model to the other.

  • Suction Types

They are less expensive than their counterparts and they work great with all types of pools, regardless if they are above or in-ground. Moreover, handheld pool vacuums can handle a wide variety of debris, ranging from algae and bacteria, up to pebbles, sediments, and debris that had sunk at the bottom of the pool.

They will give your pool a great scrub while vacuuming around, and they work when connected to the filtration system. Additionally, you can pick between automatic models, which offer a powerful vacuuming, but require a skimmer, or hand-held models that operate on rechargeable batteries and are better suited for small to medium-sized pools.

  • Economic
  • Simple operation
  • Effective at cleaning medium-sized pools
  • Can handle small and fine debris
  • Can scrub walls and pool floor
  • Overworks the pool filter
  • Can’t handle large debris
  • Requires a clean filter to work
  • Might get stuck in the pool
  • Can’t access stairs and drains
  • Pressure Types

A bit expensive compared to their counterparts, the pressure side pool cleaners use the pump in order to move around and remove debris from your pool. You can either use them with your current pump if they are compatible or with a separate, booster pump. They can handle large debris pretty well, as they can easily take care of leaves, grass, bugs, twigs, etc. Thus, they are a great help if your pool is situated near trees. Moreover, you don’t have to worry about them blocking the pool’s filter, as the debris will be kept in a separate bag.

  • Powerful
  • Can handle large debris
  • A scrubbing accessory can be attached
  • Doesn’t overwork the filter
  • Works with medium-large pools
  • Affordable
  • Might require a second pump to work
  • The bag must be cleaned after every use
  • Can’t handle small or fine debris.
  • Doesn’t scrub on its own
  • Can get stuck in pool corners
  • Robotic

Despite their high price, these units will have a positive impact on your pool costs in the long run. They need to be connected to the electrical grid in order to function properly, as their motor requires low voltage electricity to work. These models come with an integrated pump and filter, so they won’t overwork the pool’s system to prevent you from spending too much money on maintenance. Moreover, smart functions like pool type and size assessment, as well as memorization of the data that top rated automatic pool cleaners feature help reduce upkeep and cleaning costs in the long run as the robot won’t pass over the same area twice, consuming an optimum amount of power to do its task. Some models even come with remote controls and a schedule function that will not only allow you to set them up from a distance but will also allow you to set up a program for the cleaner.

  • Motorized cleaning
  • Won’t overwork pump or filtration system
  • ‘Intelligent’ features
  • Programmable operation
  • Built-in pump and filtration system
  • Won’t tangle
  • Can scrub all pool areas
  • Remote control
  • Can handle all types of debris
  • Works with all types and sizes of pool
  • Quite expensive
  • Require connection to an electrical grid
  • Pump and filters require frequent cleaning
  • Limited movement because of the length of the electrical cord

Advantages and Disadvantages

While there are several pros and cons to all three types, therefore allowing you to choose which one suits your requirements and needs best, you should consider the overall benefits and drawbacks of using such a cleaner for your swimming pool.

  • Benefits
  1. Environmentally friendly – it won’t cause harm to the environment, nor will it produce chemicals as it runs underwater.
  2. Time and energy-efficient – there’s no need for you to spend your energy and time cleaning your pool, as the cleaner will do so on its own.
  3. Cost-reducer – since your pool will be cleaned by using the filtration system, the pump, or the connection to the electrical panel, you won’t have to ask for professional help. Overall, this will help you save money in the long run, reducing maintenance costs.
  4. Maintains water balance – the chemicals you might have, otherwise, used to keep algae and bacteria away from the pool walls, can now be cut to half, as the cleaner will ensure the pool’s walls and bottom are cleaned regularly. Thus, you won’t have to oversaturate the water with chlorine or chemicals.
  5. Low maintenance – you can forget about the additional costs to replace or repair damaged pool equipment. The automatic cleaners come with relatively simple operation and system, thus allowing you to repair them yourself in case they require maintenance.

While there are several benefits of taking an auto-cleaner home, you should be aware of the drawbacks of owning one, as well. Therefore, you’ll be able to make an informed decision, resulting in you not regret your choice.

  • Drawbacks
  1. Depending on the model you decide to use, it won’t be able to handle all types of debris, resulting in you having to manually remove the leftovers.
  2. Some parts of the pool might be unreachable. Corners, stairs, steps and even some walls might pose a challenge to the cleaner.
  3. Stubborn algae, as well as floating debris, will require manual removal as the cleaner won’t be able to get rid of them.
  4. Price – not all can afford an automatic cleaner, and the model they can incorporate in their budget might not be what their pool needs.
  5. It can get stuck and tangled in the pool. Don’t be surprised if you find the cleaner stuck in a corner or along other tubes.


To sum up, there are three models of pool cleaners you can select from. Each comes with its own pros and cons to allow you to make an informed purchase. However, you’ll have to keep in mind the overall benefits and disadvantages of owning one before you decide whether you want to acquire one or not.