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Best Rated Automatic Robot Pool Cleaners for Inground Pools


Keep Your Pool Sparkling With These Automatic Pool Cleaners

We all love having a pool and being able to swim whenever we want. Unfortunately, owning our own swimming pool is hard work! It’s amazing how quickly your beautiful pool can become dirty and almost unrecognizable. The daily or weekly chores to keep a clean pool can be tedious at best and hiring a “pool guy” can quickly escalate in costs. Fortunately, much of the tedious and more labor-intensive work can be removed by investing in a handy robot pool cleaner.

Automatic pool cleaners can be an excellent time-saver for the whole family. They work almost completely independently and require very little maintenance. As long as the robot is up to the task, your pool will stay clean and clear with minimal effort on your part. Finding the right pool cleaner can be difficult with the wide range of features and capabilities. We’ve picked out some of the most popular models and chosen which ones we feel do the best job with as little hassle as possible.

We decided on the Dolphin Nautilus CC as being the best in class due to its well-rounded features and quality workmanship. If you are looking for value, the AIPER robot pool cleaner offers features commonly seen in much more expensive models. The AIPER is a superb automatic cleaner at a fraction of what most would expect to pay.

Our Top Picks

Dolphin Nautilus CC


Polaris F9550

Hayward TigerShark

HonorsBest in ClassBest Value
The GoodExcellent performance for being so light. Cleans very well with strong suction. Cartridges are easily replaced. Solid workmanship with little upkeep.Best bang for your buck on list. Brushes and powerful suction do superior job of cleaning. Removing large dirt traps is simple. Adaptable and works well with other tools.Operates quickly and efficiently with little wasted movement. Lightweight and easily moved. Consistent and reliable. Made out of strong materials for increased durability.Easy and effortless to operate. Adaptable to almost any pool surface. Can traverse most layouts/designs without issue. Quick Clean works well as a fast “once over”. Best used between more deliberate cleanings.
The BadNeed to move up to next level for more advanced features. An included caddy would be helpful. Steps can cause issues at times.Customer service seems to be lacking. Dirt stuck behind trap can be difficult to completely remove. Some small durability concerns with cheaper materials.Remote is a labyrinth for some. Customer support can be frustrating with delayed response.Heavy for a robotic pool cleaner. Tends to get stuck on obstacles and may clean certain areas more than others. Cord can be a nuisance when twisted.
OverallExcellent performance and durability at mid-grade prices. Very hands-off and is barely noticed while it keeps the pool clean.Very good pool cleaner at an affordable price. The features and performance greatly outperform the cost.Still in the mid-grade range, but at the upper end. Performs well and gives you what you expect. Better deals can be had with similar performance.Decent model, but there are better options available. It performs above average, but other issues are holding it back.
Our Rating8.
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The Reviews

Best Choice

Dolphin Nautilus CC

By: Dolphin

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  • Cleans up to 50 ft. pools
  • Dual scrubbing brushes
  • Independent cleaning
  • Scheduler
  • Tangle-free cable
  • Twin cartridge filters
  • 2-hour cleaning time

Dolphin Nautilus CC Plus Robotic Pool Cleaner

Dolphin Nautilus CC Plus is an in-ground automatic pool cleaner that suits pools up to 50 feet. Its standard dual scrubbing system removes dirt and grime, leaving the pool clean in under two hours. The best thing about using an independent pool cleaner is that you avoid putting too much strain on the main filtering system of your pool, thus saving on your maintenance costs.

As the Dolphin is an independent device, it does not add to your energy bills as it doesn’t need external equipment or accessories to get the pool cleaning job done. It has a power pack with free universal voltage of 100V – 240V, so it plugs into the standard 115V outlet.

The robot allows weekly scheduling with three options: daily, every other day, and every third day. You can program one full week of pool cleaning jobs with the touch of a button. Although this kind of programming should work for most users, some may need to control their robot via their smartphone. Unfortunately, the Dolphin Nautilus CC doesn’t allow smartphone control. Nevertheless, if you don’t mind using the weekly programming function, you’ll be fine with this pool cleaner.

This smart device works on every type of surface, from tile to gunite. It suits any pool style and shape, including infinity edge pools.

Thanks to its superior filtering capabilities, this machine effectively traps and locks in all dirt and debris, leaving the pool sparkling clean. The vacuum pulls the water through the bottom of the unit, and then filters it through four different filters. Next, the filtered water is expelled through the upper side of the robot. It can remove dirt, debris, and even algae in a single pass. Also, it can clean walls and steps, so this is the only device you need to care for your pool.

  • Strong suction
  • Lightweight but has good traction
  • Easily replaceable cartridges
  • Well-made and durable
  • Simple and easy to use
  • Easy to maintain
  • Steps can cause problems
  • Doesn’t come with cart
  • No smartphone integration

Best Value

AIPER Pool Cleaner


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  • Anti-rollover technology
  • Scheduling system
  • Top loading debris trap
  • 2-year warranty
  • 4 PVC brushes
  • Anti-tangle swivel
  • Lightweight design

AIPER Automatic Robotic Pool Cleaner

Unlike other robotic pool cleaners on the market, AIPER differs in that it works on virtually any type of pool. Whether a pool is in-ground or above-ground, if it doesn’t have a diameter of more than 50 feet, this cleaner can get the job done. It offers a myriad of features that enable it to clean a pool efficiently and effectively.

This specific pool cleaner is equipped with technology that allows it to clean with agility and speed. The bottom of the cleaner has something called an anti-rollover function that allows it to smoothly glide across pool walls. Additionally, a tangle-free power cord provides smooth movement without hassle.

With exceptional mobility in check, the AIPER pool cleaner really shines with its ability to remove all grime, gunk and dirt from the pool floor and walls. Instead of TPE brushes, this cleaner uses PVA brushes that can loosen moss, grass, dust and smaller garbage pieces. Using the suction pathway, the cleaner then sucks up the loosened debris.

The top-loading filter is strong and durable, allowing for longer cleaning periods. It has a lot of holding power which enables gunk and grime to collect for a while. Plus, the filter is strong and durable, making it ideal to hold protruding or otherwise damaging debris.

The cleaner has a built-in timer scheduling function for ease of use. Unfortunately, there is no signal or beep to let users know that the cycle has been completed.

AIPER is not a brand easily recognized in the world of technology, but its many five-star reviews and satisfied customers shows the brand’s ability to create a solid pool cleaner. With more agility, a sturdy filter and better brushes, this pool cleaner truly delivers where other brands have dropped the ball for a fraction of the cost.

  • Affordable value buy
  • Strong suction
  • Brushes grip dirt/grime well
  • Easy to unload debris from traps
  • Easy setup
  • Works well with a skimmer
  • Large dirt containers
  • Durability concerns
  • Poor customer service
  • Dirt behind trap is difficult to remove

Polaris F9550

By: Polaris

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  • ActivMotion Sensor Technology
  • Vortex Vacuum Technology
  • Rear water propulsion
  • 4-wheel drive
  • Aqua-Trax tires
  • Programmable time
  • Remote control
  • Dirty canister indicator

Polaris F9550 Sport Robotic In-Ground Pool Cleaner

The Polaris F9550 Sport Robotic Pool Cleaner is one of the most advanced pool cleaning devices available today. Its Aqua-Trax tires suit any type of pool surface. Also, the ActivMotion Sensor Technology makes it quite easy to clean even large and free-form pools. Thanks to this device, you can enjoy clean and healthy water without having to scrub your pool or to hire people to do this job for you. Such robotic devices can make your life easier, hence their popularity among homeowners all over the country.

This robotic pool cleaner uses oscillating brushes to dismantle and remove even stubborn dirt and grime. Thanks to its effective rear water propulsion, it can reach debris in tight corners and under stairs. The powerful vacuum and the large capacity filter canister allow the cleaner to pick up debris in a fast and effective manner. Cleaning the unit is very easy, thanks to the removable lid on the filter canister. In addition, the dirty canister indicator will let you know when it’s time to empty and clean the filter canister.

This robot features impressive technology that makes it possible to program it as you wish. It has a 7-day programmable timer, as well as a series of predefined cleaning patterns. Once you set the desired cleaning mode, you can rely on the machine to do its job each and every time.

In addition, you’ll benefit from a motion sensing handheld remote that will allow you to supervise and control the entire cleaning process.

The Polaris F9550 Sport is not only effective, but also easy to handle, thanks to its storage and transport coated alloy caddy. The 4WD technology, the solid scrubbing brush, and the high-tech features make this robotic cleaner one of the best choices for everyone seeking for a hassle-free way to keep their pools clean.

  • Fast cleaning
  • Efficient energy consumption
  • Easy to empty debris container
  • Durable
  • Keeps pool very clean
  • Strong suction
  • Remote can be confusing
  • Customer support could be better

Hayward RC9990CUB

By: Hayward

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  • 2 cleaning speeds
  • 90 minutes Quick Clean
  • 20 x 40 ft. pool size
  • Easy removal cartridge system
  • 24-volt motor
  • Optional caddy
  • 55’ cord

Hayward RC9990CUB TigerShark Robotic Pool Vacuum

If you’re currently shopping around for an in-ground robotic pool cleaner, you may want to take a closer look at the Hayward RC9990CUB, one of the robotic pol cleaners from TigerShark. This automatic pool cleaner suits residential pools up to 20 by 40 feet.

The robotic cleaner features an energy-efficient 24-volt motor that can help you save money on your pool maintenance. Also, the 90-minute fast cleaning cycle can come in handy when it comes to light cleaning. Nevertheless, it can also handle more difficult cleaning jobs, thanks to its standard 3-hour cleaning cycle that targets the floor of the pool, but also the walls, the coves and the waterline.

This robotic vacuum doesn’t require any hoses, pumps or special accessories to run. It is a set and forget type of device. Once you set it up, you won’t need to worry about it anymore. It will automatically perform the tasks in its memory. This device runs completely separately from the main filtration system of the pool, being therefore able to reduce the frequency of filter backwashing cycles.

This TigerShark automatic pool cleaner features a smart reinforced polyester cartridge filter system that makes cleaning it a breeze. The emptying is as easy as opening the cleaner, removing the cartridge and washing it thoroughly with a hose.

The Hayward RC9990CUB works on a wide array of surfaces such as fiberglass, vinyl, concrete, and ceramic pool tiles. It relies on a powerful vacuum to suck up dirt and debris in a very effective manner.

The main drawback of this robotic pool cleaner is that it doesn’t come with a remote control. However, taking into consideration that it allows you to set the desired cleaning cycle in the beginning of the process, it may not require a remote. It can do a great job on its own, while you relax and enjoy your pool.

  • Simple operation (1 button)
  • Can maneuver almost any surface
  • Picks up debris well
  • Quick Clean is good for a touch up
  • Heavier than other models
  • Can get stuck
  • Tendency to clean one area more than others
  • Cord can twist

The Beginner’s Guide To Choosing a Robot Pool Cleaner

Pools can be a costly luxury, or all the investment of time and resources can be economical and effective if properly planned and well-maintained. Part of keeping a resource-effective swimming pool involves keeping the water clean and fresh. Here are the most essential points to consider when choosing a robot pool cleaner to assist you in this regard.

Automatically cleaning steps with robot pool cleanerWhat is a Robot Pool Cleaner?

If you have an especially large pool an automatic pool cleaner may be right for you. The robot cleaner is designed to crawl the length and width of the pool collecting contaminants as it goes. It doesn’t need to be connected to the pump or filtration system as it has catch bags for this purpose and runs on power from a conventional socket. This can greatly reduce the time and effort involved in keeping pools clean.

Criteria For Choosing a Robot Pool Cleaner

To maximize the benefits of your robot pool cleaner, it will be necessary to consider the major features provided and how you can emphasize each one in your investment.


A good robot pool cleaner often costs between $200 for a low-end option to $2000 for an option equipped with superior technology and all the bells and whistles. To choose the right option for you, you will need to consider the size of your pool and the cash you would like to invest.

The most expensive options are designed for large in-ground pools. You can expect to invest $500 for a basic but reliable option and the numbers get higher from there. A $300 robot pool cleaner will be more than sufficient for most smaller pools and above-ground pools. Some features worth investing in are connectivity, greater suction power, and larger debris cartridges.

Type and Size of Pool

Despite being designed for in-ground or above-ground pools, robot pool cleaners will function the same no matter where they are placed. In other words, your basic pool cleaner will provide the same basic cleaning in a smaller or larger pool. The bigger differences come when comparing the improved features.

Larger pools and pools with irregular floors benefit from longer running times, increased suction power measured in GPH (Gallons Per hour) increases cleaning capacity, gyroscopes work to keep the device stable and larger filtration cartridges.

new robotic pool cleaner ready to clean swimming poolCleaning Features

Many of the models have scrubbing systems that agitate the debris on the pool floor picking up varying degrees of pollution. The important thing is to make sure that your robot cleaner has one of these. Different models will have different designs, with some options defined for more exacting scrubbing power.

Filtration System

Managing the filtration system means selecting the right type, size, and location of the filters. The re-usable option will save you cash in the long run and the type located on the top of the robot cleaner is easier to change. Filter boxes are both large and re-usable and one of the better options. Select the size that completes the entire pool cycle without needing to be changed in the middle.

Programming and Scheduling

Some higher-end options will allow you to set and program your pool robot to clean your pool as needed. These advanced features allow you to interface with your robot pool cleaner from your mobile device.

Power Cord Tangling

According to consumer comments, this can be a bigger problem than you think. If you have an irregularly shaped pool you may want to examine the connection of the power cord to the robot. It would do no good for your robot pool cleaner to become entangled at the bottom of the pool when in use. Some of these robot pool cleaners are connected to the power by a swivel to avoid any mishaps. If your cord does become tangled, getting the robot pool cleaner back online can be a hassle.

Vendor Support

Don’t purchase from a supplier that doesn’t have a glowing reputation for impressive customer service. You may be able to save some cash upfront, but in the long run, they may not be able to help if you run into problems. This is especially true for the higher-end options with features important to you, like connectivity.

Replacement Parts

Considering the future of the devices you purchase is part of being a responsible consumer. As the years go by and your robot pool cleaner begins to age, it may need some replacement parts to maintain functionality. Make sure these can be provided at a good price from the manufacturers. This also goes for replaceable filter boxes, brushes, and other components.

FAQ Section

Q: How Soon After Cleaning My Pool Should I Remove the Robot Cleaner from the Water?

Once your robot pool cleaner has completed its cycle of pool cleaning, leave it at the bottom of the pool for at least five minutes before pulling it out. The strong motors and pumps in the pool cleaner will be very hot and can be damaged and even burnt out if removed too soon. For this reason, allow your pool robot to cool completely before you remove it from the water.

Q: If my robot pool cleaner needs service, what will they ask for?

A: If your pool robot needs to be serviced, the technicians will need the remote control, the power supply and the robot itself. Make sure you have contacted the customer service before you make this purchase and make sure they offer repairs and maintenance services.

Q: How often will my robot pool cleaner need maintenance service?

For best results, your robot pool cleaner will need service once a year minimum. But if your robot’s work is especially strenuous, more than once a year may be better.


If you have decided to purchase a robot pool cleaner, make sure that the specific design features offered by the product are suitable for your pool. Because you will be working closely with your product’s manufacturers over the next years, make sure they provide repair and maintenance services and have a stellar customer service department.