Suction-side Pool Cleaner Reviews, 2013

Suction-side Pool Cleaner Reviews

With the 2013 season well behind us, and over 350 customer reviews, we felt it was a great opportunity to see how the most popular cleaners stacked up this year. We’re going to look at the top ten most popular cleaners, and see what real pool owners said about each!

#10 Kreepy Krauly Sand Shark GW7900

Kreepy Krauly Sand SharkGW7900Popular in Florida, California, and Arizona, the Sand Shark is a common choice for folks with small pools, or those fighting primarily dust in the pool.Pros:

  • Simple design: No diaphragm to replace.
  • Affordable: It carried a manufacturer rebate much of 2013.
  • Dust buster: Effectively delivers dust and silt to filtration system.


  • Agility: Some had trouble with tight corners or walls.
  • Picky about Pressure: One review recommended against it for Variable Speed pumps.

#9 Baracuda T5 Duo T5

Baracuda T5 DuoT5Making inroads into the traditionally Hayward and Kreepy Krauly-dominated Floridian suction-side market, the T5 Duo is finding its way into a lot of pools this year.Pros:

  • Effective: Many owners described their pools as being “spotless” and “beautiful”.
  • Easy to install: The manual was described as “well written”.


  • Agility: There were issues with tight corners, ladders, and complex pool shapes.

#8 PoolVergnuegen 4x 896548000020

PoolVergnuegen 4x896548000020A new cleaner for PoolSupplyWorld, “The PoolCleaner” carried a perfect 5-star rating (at the time of this article). Popular in California and Arizona, if it does this well next year too, it may take the #1 spot, after it collects a few more reviews.Pros:

  • Unstoppable: Rolls right over drain covers, and doesn’t get stuck.
  • Agile: Climbs walls effectively.
  • Universally loved: “So far totally impressed…” “may be the best pool cleaner that I have had” “works wonderfully” and so on.


  • Hose: One owner needed a couple extra hose sections, and one found installation a bit cumbersome.

#7 Baracuda MX8 MX8

Baracuda MX8MX8After a rocky first year, the MX8 had some improved installation instructions that addressed previous issues, and roared back into the pack in 2013. Popular in Florida and California, it clobbers all but the largest debris.Pros:

  • Effective: Great pool coverage and debris uptake.
  • Agile: Climbs walls effectively.


  • Large Debris: While not unique to the MX8, several reviews mention it getting stuck on palm fronds or other large leaves.
  • Hose: Some reviews mentioned minor hose leaks, which let air in.
  • Checkered Past: While it hasn’t had a 1-star review in over a year, some shoppers will be put off by it’s early reviews.

#6 Kreepy Krauly Great White GW9500

Kreepy Krauly Great WhiteGW9500By far the most popular for small pools in Florida, the Great White is an effective small-pool cleaner with a big reputation.Pros:

  • Value: Works well, and carried a manufacturer rebate for much of 2013, making it very affordable.
  • Flexible: Works well with variable pump speeds.


  • Agility: Some owners had unsatisfactory pool coverage.
  • Depth: It doesn’t work well on pools over six feet deep.

#5 Hayward Navigator Pro 925ADC

Hayward Navigator Pro925ADCIn some parts of Florida, the Navigator is the cleaner of choice–no contest. When they finally wear out, they are often replaced with another Navigator, which speaks volumes.Pros:

  • Self-sufficient: Works great with little supervision.
  • Durable: Some owners claim getting nearly a decade of use.
  • Popular: Check out what one owner said: “There is no substitute for performance, quality of workmanship and effortless maintenance.”


  • Repairs: Wings and pads may wear out quickly on some pool surfaces.

#4 Hayward Pool Vac XL 2025ADC

Hayward Pool Vac XL2025ADCWhile popular in Florida, like the Navigator, the Pool Vac XL also has a lot of fans in California and Arizona. While it has fewer reviews than the Navigator overall, it has the same number of 5-star ratings, and won a higher place on our list.Pros:

  • Great Deal: At some points, it carried both a manufacturer rebate and a free leaf canister.
  • Easy to Assemble: The accompanying DVD was praised for simplifying set-up.
  • Popular: You have to love the pun of one customer review: “They will sweeep you off your feet!”


  • Debris size: The throat was described as being “as big as a 1/2 dollar”, so larger debris was a problem for that owner.

#3 Kreepy Krauly Kruiser K60430

Kreepy Krauly KruiserK60430The redesigned Kruiser was a force to be reckoned with this year, earning fans in California, Arizona, and Florida.Pros:

  • Effective: While most needed to make minor adjustments to hoses or weights, there were a lot of happy owners.
  • Affordable: For much of the season, this was one of the least expensive, most effective cleaners.


  • Big Shoes to Fill: There were a few customers who directly compared this cleaner to their aging Kreepy Krauly, which they loved. Hard act to follow.
  • Noise: Some claimed it was quiet, some claimed it was too loud to let it run at night, so it seems to depend on your pool whether or not this is noisier than other diaphragm/flapper cleaners.

#2 Baracuda G3 W03000

Baracuda G3W03000A massively popular cleaner, common in Florida, Arizona, and California, the G3 was frequently on sale, and was the darling of the suction-side market for much of the year.Pros:

  • Effective: One owner said it was better than his service company, and another claimed it was “the bee’s knees”.
  • Affordable: While there were some other cleaners that would sometimes dethrone it (especially after rebates), the G3 spent most of the year on top on price.
  • Loyalty-inspiring: Many reviews claimed to be replacing a previous G3 after years of service with another one.


  • Longevity: It sounds like replacements were slightly more common compared to the Kreepy Krauly, but owners really didn’t seem to mind.
  • Agility: While most had no trouble, it sounded like some pools had tricky spots where it would sometimes get stuck.

#1 Kreepy Krauly Classic Classic

Kreepy Krauly ClassicClassicThe grand-daddy of diaphragm/flapper suction-side cleaners, the Classic is what most people are thinking of when they hear “Kreepy Krauly”. Less common in Florida, this cleaner’s fans are in California, Texas, and Washington state.


  • Awesome: No cleaner has a more dedicated fan base than the Classic, and for good reason.
  • Affordable: The Classic isn’t too expensive, and carried a rebate for much of 2013.


  • Parts: The only negative review on this cleaner stated that replacement parts are expensive.

2013 was a great year for suction-side cleaners. With minor redesigns on a few models that addressed the few troubles that popped up in 2012, there wasn’t a clear break-away brand this year. Some of these models are designed for all surface types, while others (including the Kreepy Krauly Classic) have specific versions for vinyl and fiberglass pools, so be aware of that. Picking the best cleaner for your pool won’t just be a matter of picking the #1 on our list–consider the type of debris that is most common in your pool, and what other factors are most important to you.

These cleaners will all continue to earn reviews from new owners, so feel free to check out the reviews on any of them. You might read one that speaks to your situation better than we could have guessed, and you can verify what we’ve told you here for yourself. We want you to have the best possible cleaner for your pool, regardless of brand or model, and customer reviews are a great way to guide your shopping research.

Hopefully this summary will help you make the best decision for your pool, but feel free to contact us if you have any questions!