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The 3 Best Robotic Pool Cleaners

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Pool cleaner during his work. Cleaning robot for cleaning the botton of swimming pools.
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There are a lot of things to love about having a pool in your backyard, but cleaning it isn't one of them. Between the leaves and bugs that float on the surface, to the debris that collects on the bottom, it can be quite a task to keep your pool spotless. To majorly save on time, investing in a robot pool cleaner can help. To find the best robotic pool cleaner for your pool, you'll want to keep in mind whether you have an in-ground or an above-ground pool.

Similar to self-propelled vacuums, robotic pool cleaners do all the work with minimal effort on your part. The key is to find an easy-to-use pool cleaner that works for the type of pool you have. While there are a few cleaners that will work on both above-ground and in-ground pools, devices that are made for a specific pool tend to have more features or are better equipped to handle the space you put them in. For example, a great in-ground pool cleaner can actually climb the walls of your pool, while an above-ground option will spend its time thoroughly cleaning the bottom. In-ground robotic pool cleaners also tend to be able to go deeper than ones designed for use in both (since in-ground pools tend to be deeper than their above-ground counterparts).

One feature that's a must, no matter which kind of pool you have, is a tangle-free cord. An excellent pool cleaner will have an extra long, durable cord that won't bunch up or get trapped beneath the wheels. Or even better: Snag a cordless pool cleaner for super simple clean-up.

No matter which way you go, buying one of the best robotic pool cleaners is a big investment. Here's a round-up of some of the best options on the market to help you narrow it down.

1. Best For In-Ground Pools

For in-ground pools, this high-powered robotic cleaner can't be beat. It works perfectly for pools up to 50 feet in length, and it leaves every inch spotless in two hours or less. You can choose a cleaning schedule that works best for you, including every day, every other day, or every third day, just by touching a single button. This robotic cleaner also features dual scrub brushes that lift every bit of dirt and debris from both the bottom and walls, and the no-tangle cord ensures it won't get stuck as it circles the pool. Nearly 2,000 Amazon reviewers have raved about this cleaner.

According to one reviewer: "Has strong suction, excellent traction, adequate pool coverage, easy to clean/replace removable cartridges, overall excellent cleaning device. Overall I am very pleased and hopeful that the unit holds up mechanically over time."

2. Best For Above-Ground Pools

With conveyor-belt-style wheels that roll along the bottom of your pool, this easy-to-use pool cleaner sweeps up debris and dirt in above-ground pools up to 30 feet long. To use, just place it in the pool and tap the button. That's it! No extra installation, hoses, or pumps required. This cleaner works quicker than the in-ground pool cleaner above — it'll leave your pool spotless in an hour and a half. While it does boast a tangle-free cord, some reviewers say the cord can get a little tangled when the cleaner operates for a long period of time. One note: Unlike the in-ground pool cleaner above, this one won't clean the walls of your pool.

According to one reviewer: "This vacuum took less than two minutes to get in the water and running. It's a good weight, sturdy, feels well built. It cleaned my pool bottom spotlessly in one cycle. Removing it was simple, pull the cord until you can grab the handle. If you're reluctant, don't be. It's a great unit for an above ground pool."

3. A Versatile Option

This compact robotic cleaner is designed for use in both above-ground and in-ground pools. It doesn't have quite as much reach as the best in-ground pool cleaner above (it can only clean pools up to 33 feet long), and it's not as affordable as the above-ground option, but it's still a great pick. Like other options on this list, you can set a cleaning schedule that works for you. The rolling scrub brush easily scoops up dirt with the push of a button, and the whole job gets done in two hours or less. Plus, the top-loader filter is easy to unload and rinse so it can get back to work in a snap.

According to one reviewer: "I bought this Dolphin CC to replace a 9 year old Dolphin Premiere. I love it! Such an improvement as far as ease of use! Much lighter and the basket is so nice. I had this new unit in the water within 10 minutes of it being delivered! So simple, I’m extremely pleased!"