“What are the best cleaners for vinyl pools?”
We get asked the question all the time. So we’ve decided to put together a comparison guide of all the best options. Depending on the size of your pool, budget, and local climate, this guide will help you find the best cleaner for your vinyl pool!
Finding the best equipment for each type of pool is our passion. We realize that different pool types and sizes have different needs. Not only are we pool lovers and owners, but we have the advantage of feedback from thousands of customers. We’ve put these recommendations together based on personal use, as well as aggregated feedback from vinyl pool owners all over the country.
Pressure Side Cleaners for Vinyl Pools
Pressure side cleaners are a great option for vinyl pools because they are cost effective and preserve your pool filter. Pressure side cleaners run from your return jet. Also, since a pressure side cleaner has a debris bag, it keeps that debris from ever getting to your filter. This means longer filter life span and less filter cleaning. You will, of course, need to clean out the debris bag from time to time. Lets take a closer look at our favorites!
The Polaris 280 is one of the most dependable pressure side cleaners on the market. It’s been Polaris’ most popular pool cleaner for years, and with good reason. Dual-jets give the cleaner great suction and speed. If anything goes wrong with the cleaner, it comes with a great warranty, and parts are very easy to find.
Keep in mind that the Polaris 280 does require a booster pump. Even with the added cost of a booster pump, the cleaner is still one of the most affordable solutions on the market. You certainly get a lot of bang for your buck! more info…
Polaris 65 Turbo Turtle
The Polaris 65 Turbo Turtle is the perfect pool cleaner for small above ground pools. This fun cleaner is powered by pressurized water, but does not require an additional booster pump.
Easy installation and exceptional performance make the Polaris Turbo Turtle one of the highest-selling above ground pool cleaners on the market. Not only does it look cute, but this little cleaner can sweep and clean smaller pools in about 3 hours! more info…
Kreepy Krauly Letro Legend
The Kreepy Krauly Letro Legend gives the Polaris 280 a run for its money. We’ve seen a handful of customer reviews who prefer the 4-wheel design over the other options. Front-wheel drive gives the unit excellent traction, even on inclines.
Just like with the 280, the Letro Legend requires a booster pump. Also compared to the 280, the cost of the booster pump + pool cleaner still provides an affordable price tag. more info…
Suction Side Cleaners for Vinyl Pools
Suction side cleaners are a great option for vinyl pools for several reasons. For starters, they do not require an additional booster pump, so there is less equipment to purchase and maintain. Suction side cleaners also do not have a self-contained debris bag, freeing up time that you would otherwise be emptying the bag. However, the downside (to no self-contained bag) is that all the debris get passed into your filter. This could mean backwashing more often (for Sand Filters and DE Filters) or cleaning the filter (Cartridge) more often.
The Baracuda MX6 is a compact version of the MX8. Compared to its big brother, the MX6 is lighter, faster, and more energy efficient. The twist-lock hose is much easier to work with than a standard pool hose. The MX6’s flow regulator control excess flow, and also allows the cleaner to work with lower-powered pumps. No booster pump required.
The jury is still out on the durability of this unit, because it’s relatively new, but so far we’ve seen nothing but raving reviews. From everything we’ve seen so far, Zodiac seems to have nailed it with the MX6. more info…
Similar to the Polaris 280, the Baracuda G3 is one of those cleaners that’s been around a long time. Despite a simplistic design, the G3 holds its own against newer models that have more bells and whistles. Another benefit of the simple design is the cost of repair, should anything happen to the unit. Parts are easy to find and very affordable.
Best of all, the Baracuda G3 is one of the cheapest cleaners on the market. You don’t need a booster pump—what you see it what you get. Set-up is simple, so you’ll be swimming again in no time! more info…
Hayward Pool Vac XL
While all of the cleaners listed above will work for all pool surfaces, the Hayward Pool Vac XL was designed specifically for vinyl pools. This allowed Hayward to tweak the unit for optimal performance. (Hayward has a gunite version, too.)
Since there are no belts or wheels (both of which can wear out with time), the Pool Vac XL is a durable unit. If something does go wrong, parts are really easy to find.
One of our favorite parts about the Hayward Pool Vac XL is how quietly it cleans. It operates using your skimmer or dedicated suction line, so no booster pump is required. more info…
Hayward Navigator Pro
Just like the Pool Vac XL, the Hayward Navigator Pro has a special version to be used exclusively on vinyl pools. Both of the cleaners are actually the same on the inside. The only significant difference is the appearance.
The Hayward Navigator Pro has a $100 mail-in rebate; and does not require a booster pump.
The only complaint we’ve seen about these two units is their ability to climb pool walls. Some customers have issues with the wall climbing, while others do not. Besides that, it is a reliable and durable unit at a great price. more info…
Robotic Cleaners for Vinyl Pools
Robotic pool cleaners require the least work for pool owners. In the past, it was a common fear that a robotic pool cleaner might wear down your vinyl liner faster than other types of cleaners. With the latest advancements in pool equipment technology, however, these cleaners are just as safe as other types of cleaners. Most robotic pool cleaners also have a remote-control option, which allows you to direct the cleaner if you just need to hit a few dirty areas. Robotic pool cleaners have self-contained debris bags, so less debris gets to your filter. Robots tend to be a little more expensive than other cleaner types, but the up-front investment lets you spend more time swimming and relaxing by the pool.
The Dolphin E10 is one of the most affordable robotic pool cleaners on the market. This automatic cleaner from Dolphin is ideal for both small in-ground pools and above ground pools. This robot will leave your pool surfaces sparkling in about 1.5 hours. Its quick-speed active brushing will eliminate algae and dirt with ease!
The Large Top Load Net Canister makes it easy to access and clean the collected debris. Designed to be 8 times more energy efficient than suction and pressure side pool cleaners, the Dolphin E10 is a reliable robotic pool cleaner designed to meet your needs.
Water Tech Blue Diamond
The Water Tech Blue Diamond circulates 4,225 gallons of water per hour, which is not quite as much at the Turbo T2, but still very impressive. The 12V operation saves electricity consumption (compared to standard 24V on most other robotic cleaners).
The micro-filter bag will catch debris as small as 2 microns. The Blue Diamond will clean your entire pool in just one hour, saving you time and money. The PVA brushes loosen even the most stubborn dirt, but will not damage your vinyl liner. more info…
Still have questions? Please leave a comment below!