Best Above Ground Pool Vacuum for Automatic Robotic Cleaning

Owning an above ground pool is one of the dreams of every household. It offers the perfect setting to relax during summers and also creates the opportunity to bond with family members and close friends.

With use, however, the pool will eventually accumulate dirt, leaves, pebbles and other debris that are not only unsightly but can also be unsanitary.

To restore the pool’s water to its crystal clear state, cleaning it with automatic above ground pool vacuum cleaners is necessary maintenance activity.

Top 3 Choices

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#1 Choice
Aquabot APRVJR Pool Rover Junior Robotic Above-Ground Pool Cleaner,Color May Vary
Pentair K50600 Kreepy Krauly E-Z Vac Suction-Side Above Ground Pool Cleaner Blue/White
Intex Auto Pool Cleaner
Why?
Top overall pick
Cost-effective choice
For Intex pool owners
#1 Choice
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Aquabot APRVJR Pool Rover Junior Robotic Above-Ground Pool Cleaner,Color May Vary
Why?
Top overall pick
More Info
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Pentair K50600 Kreepy Krauly E-Z Vac Suction-Side Above Ground Pool Cleaner Blue/White
Why?
Cost-effective choice
More Info
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Intex Auto Pool Cleaner
Why?
For Intex pool owners
More Info

Rather than tiring yourself by window shopping for the best vacuum for above ground pools out there, we’ve already done the job for you.

This list of automatic above ground pool cleaners reviews contains a few of the best vacuums for above ground pools the market has to offer.

We’ve also included models from different price ranges so you’ll find one that fits your budget.

If your pool maintenance budget allows for the help of a cleaner in the $200-300 range, then the Aquabot Pool Rover Junior Robotic Above Ground Pool Cleaner is perfect for you.

Its auto shut off timer function as well as its built-in 2 micron fine reusable filter bag are just a few of the reasons why we’ve included this cleaner in our top-rated automatic pool cleaners round-up for 2019.

The 40-foot floating cable makes the robotic pool cleaner ideal even for medium-sized above ground pools, thanks to its extended range.

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Aquabot APRVJR Pool Rover Junior Robotic Above-Ground Pool Cleaner,Color May Vary
  • Pool rover Jr. comes with 40-feet of floating cable, a built-in 2-micron fine reusable filter bag and a power supply transformer
  • Fully automatic robotic cleaner vacuums any round, oval, or rectangular flat-surface above-ground pool in 1 hour or less without hoses
  • Powered by a 24-volt pump motor that provides vacuum suction and jet-drive propulsion and works with the touch of a button

While it is sturdy and durable, it is not heavy at all as it is made mostly out of plastic, which means you won’t have any problem at all taking it into or out of the above ground pool.

Moreover, this automatic pool cleaner vacuum sports extra-wide non-marring wheels capable of rolling over any surface which is a good thing because the unit can clean any type of above ground pool.

The pool cleaner rover is powered by a single pump motor which gives it its jet-drive propulsion as well as its vacuum suction power.

Meanwhile, you will surely love its 2-hour timer feature which is heaven-sent for forgetful users who are prone to totally forgetting about their pool cleaners hard at work in keeping their pools spotless and raking up their power bills in the process. You can basically turn it on and forget about it.

This automatic pool cleaner might be the greatest model on the market today!

Aquabot in action cleaning a pool
Pros
  • Easy to use robotic pool cleaner
  • Timer feature ensures worry-free use even for forgetful pool owners
  • Highly capable cleaner
Cons
  • Filter bag needs to be cleaned after every use to prevent clogging/rotting

The Pentair K50600 Kreepy Krauly E-Z Vac comes from a well-established brand in the above ground pool maintenance segment. With its reliability and the time-tested design of this vacuum cleaner, it definitely earned its place in our robotic pool cleaners guide for 2019.

This pressure side pool cleaner has a patented Flapper mechanism which makes instances of clogging less frequent when compared to diaphragm style suction ones. In addition, it also comes with a Patented bumper strap that protects he cleaner and prevents it from knocking against the walls or steps which increases its lifespan.

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Pentair K50600 Kreepy Krauly E-Z Vac Suction-Side Above Ground Pool Cleaner Blue/White
  • Superior hydraulic design for optimum vacuuming power
  • Only one operational moving part (the flapper) for long, dependable service; no wheels or gears to replace or service
  • Free skimming valve automatically regulates water flow to assure proper cleaning speed and simultaneous skimming of surface debris while vacuuming

The Kreepy Krauly E-Z Vac is cleverly designed in that it only has one moving part – the flapper. What this means to above ground pool owners is that with no wheels or gears to break down, maintenance is less frequent and the vacuum cleaner is capable of delivering a long and dependable service. Its skimming valve, which automatically regulates water flow, ensures that the right abive ground pool cleaning speed is maintained. The vacuum device has a random pattern coverage for a thoroughly vacuumed pool floor.

Safety is also not an issue with this pool cleaner. It is perfectly safe to use even if there are swimmers in the pool. If you are looking for a good automatic pool cleaner, this is certainly one of the best robotic pool cleaners out there.

The package includes 32 feet of hose. However, the manufacturer does not recommend the pool cleaner to be used in pools with less than ¾ pumps.

Pros
  • Affordably priced
  • Perfect for smaller pools
  • Cleans efficiently
Cons
  • Hose provided restricts its usage to medium-sized pools
  • A bit heavy and loud

All pool owners want a vacuum cleaner that is not only efficient but is also easy-to-use and do not require additional expenses for booster pumps for it to operate. In The Swim Hayward 500Y Aqua Critter Automatic Pool Cleaner Pool Skimmer Filter Savers 5-Pack – 2 Item Bundle is perfect for the job earning it a spot on this list.

How does a suction pool cleaner work? The cute cleaner easily connects to existing pump and filtration system of your above ground pool eliminating the need to purchase an additional booster pump, which can be quite expensive.

In The Swim Hayward 500Y Aqua Critter Automatic Above Ground Pool Cleaner with Pool Skimmer Filter…
  • Bundle of 2 Items – Hayward Aqua Critter Above Ground Suction-Side Pool Vacuum and 5-Pack of Pool Skimmer Filter Savers
  • Efficiently and automatically cleans flat or dished-out above ground pool bottoms
  • Features a patented SmartDrive pre-programmed cleaning pattern with quiet operation

Removing bugs, sand, dirt and other debris won’t be a problem for this hard-working critter as it’s specifically designed to automatically clean for both dished-out or flat floors.

This is made possible by its patented SmartDrive clearing pattern that provides the unit with constant water flow via its gearing/turbine system. Quiet but efficient, it can do a complete suction pool sweep in two hours.

It comes with reusable filter Saver nets which you can slip over skimmer baskets to catch small bugs, leaves, pollen, dirt, and debris which not only cuts the time it takes to clear your pool but also extends the equipment’s lifespan. The set includes 5-pack filter savers, 32 feet of hose sections and skimmer cone.

The Aqua Critter is very easy installing and can be done in just 10 minutes. However, the unit is not recommended for use in pools with pumps below ¾ horsepoewer as it may not be able to its job efficiently.

Pros
  • Affordably priced
  • Watching the critter in action is entertaining
  • Easy to use
Cons
  • Might not work properly in wrinkled and uneven bottom of the pool

Intex above ground pools are becoming more popular these days. They are very easy to install and, with just a few bucks, the entire family can enjoy a refreshing dip in their very own Intex right at their own backyard.

It’s a no-brainer then that the Intex Auto Pool Cleaner will make it to this list. After all, it’s also manufactured by the same maker so you are assured you’ll only be getting the best cleaner for this type of pool.

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Intex Auto Pool Cleaner
  • Requires a filter pump with a flow rate between 1,600 – 3,500gph
  • Attaches to the inlet connector in the pool with a 24’7″ hose
  • For Intex above ground pools with 1-1/2″ hose fittings

Specifically designed to vacuum Intex pools, the cleaner requires a filter-pump with a flow-rate between 1,600 to 3,500 gph. It comes with a 24 feet hose which fits perfectly with 1-1/2” hose fittings. With a compact brush under the base, it cleans debris in the above ground pool bottom efficiently, as long as the surface is smooth.

Remember that since the four plastic wheels are not powered, any wrinkle at the Intex’s bottom might stop the cleaner from moving to other locations. Having said that, this is definitely a good automatic pool cleaner for Intex pools.

Pros
  • Lightweight and portable
  • Very affordable
  • Works best with Intex products
Cons
  • Might not work well with non-Intex models
  • Might get stuck by wrinkles at the pool’s bottom

The Zodiac Ranger Suction Side Automatic Above-Ground Pool Cleaner is a cleverly designed cleaner with its one moving-part technology. This makes it very quiet yet very efficient earning it a spot here.

The Baracuda Zodiac Ranger comes pre-assembled so installation won’t be a problem. The package includes a 32-feet hose which makes it ideal for small pools. It won’t get caught on steps and corners because of its deflector wheels.

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Zodiac Ranger Suction Side Automatic Above-Ground Pool Cleaner
  • Effectively cleans above-ground swimming pools (not recommended for Intex/soft-sided pools), including dished-out bottoms up to 72 inches.
  • One moving part technology, eliminates annoying hammer or flapper noise; works quickly, effectively, and quietly.
  • Unique Deflector Wheel helps prevent it from getting caught on steps, ladders and corners!

While the manufacturer says suction side automatic pool ground cleaners won’t get stuck even with ladders around, it is probably best if you remove them while cleaning the pool or buy a ladder guard instead.

While the pool rover is very efficient in making your above ground swimming pool squeaky clean, it does the job silently and without much noise. This is made possible because it only has one moving-part so noise from flappers or hammers is non-existent.

Water flow is automatically regulated with its Flowkeeper valve and insta-skim compact self-adjusting flow control valve. This ensures that the vacuum unit cleans up the entire floor evenly and efficiently.

Those who have bought it say it’s very easy to use, efficiently cleans and a very silent worker too. A very good deal for its price and certainly a top automatic pool cleaner for above ground pools.

Pros
  • Quiet, no flapping noise
  • Easy installation
  • Efficient cleaner
  • Good value for its price
Cons
  • Not recommended for Intex and other soft-sided pools
  • Bigger leaves might clog up the unit and cause performance issues

If you want versatility, then the XtremepowerUS Automatic Suction Vacuum-generic Climb Wall Pool Cleaner is perfect for you. The package comes with 10 hoses which makes it capable of vacuuming up to 30’ pools.

The above ground pool sweeper is one of the most versatile equipment currently available on the market and an affordable one at that. The unit is capable of cleaning all kinds of pool surfaces such as concrete, vinyl or fiberglass.

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XtremepowerUS Automatic Suction Vacuum-generic Climb Wall Pool Cleaner – 75037
  • 10 hoses included for up to 30′ pool. Ideal for cleaning bottom surface and wall; does not clean stairs
  • Require at least a 1 hp swimming pool pump or 1600 GHP to function properly.
  • No tools required and no electricity needed; Attaches to your existing filtration system

While the equipment can handle a 30’ pool, it is advisable to attach only the necessary number of hoses to sufficiently cover the pool area. If you attach all 10 vacuum hoses even if the pool is small, there is a tendency for the unit to get tangled while cleaning. Conversely, if don’t use enough number of hoses, it may result in some areas being out of reach from the unit’s cleaning radius.

There is no need to use tools and the above ground pool cleaner does not even need electricity to function. However, you need to attach it to your pool’s filtration system. The requirement is that the pool pump should be at least 1 hp or 1600 GHP for the unit to operate in its maximum performance.

Remember that above ground swimming pool chemical might corrode the cleaner’s parts. It is therefore recommended that the unit must be taken out of the pool when not in use and that it should be properly rinsed and cleaned before storage.

Pros
  • Very affordable
  • Easy to use and install
  • Can easily climb pool walls
Cons
  • The flow rate is sometimes slow
  • Hose length might not be sufficient for larger models

The Pentair 360100 Kreepy Krauly Lil Shark Above Ground Pool Cleaner has been around for quite some time but this is the new and improved model.

With its dual-band of bristles coupled with its powerful vacuum, no debris is spared giving it the qualification to be included in this top-rated pool robots guide for 2019.

The cleaner cuts a wide 10-inch path which ensures that cleaning your pool will be a quick affair. With quicker cleaning time, you’ll get more time to enjoy the pool.

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Pentair 360100 Kreepy Krauly Lil Shark Above Ground Pool Cleaner
  • Dual Band Of Bristles Scrub Debris Loose While Powerful Vacuum Whisks It Away
  • Programmed Cleaning Provides More Complete Coverage Without The Missed Spots Other Cleaners Often Leave Behind
  • Cuts A Wide 10″ Path For Quick And Thorough Cleaning

What even more amazing is that with its programmed cleaning feature, Lil Shark will eat all the dirt and grime away without missing a spot, unlike other pool cleaners that leave behind multiple missed spots.

Since you are sure that it would thoroughly clean your above ground pool, you don’t have to worry about it too much, freeing you to do other tasks more important than watching if your automatic inground pool cleaner is doing its job right.

Lil Shark is one tough unit thanks to its simple design with only one moving part. This makes operating it very simple as there is no assembly required.

More importantly, the simple design means that it is extremely durable with a long lifespan; it will continue to faithfully guard your pool against debris for many years to come, which isn’t the case with all pool cleaners.

Pros
  • No assembly required
  • Works great with Intex pools
  • Ideal for smaller pools
Cons
  • There are complaints about their units preferring to stick close to the walls while cleaning

As you might have noticed, we’ve also included a sand filter pump in this guide. The reason for this is that while owners want their pools spotless and dirt-free, they also want the water to be as clean and as refreshing as possible.

Fortunately, Intex Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump for Above Ground Pools, 16-inch, 110-120V with GFCI is just perfect for this job.

One can always use chemicals to treat their pool waters but a growing number of owners want to solve the issue with a natural approach.

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Intex Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump for Above Ground Pools, 16-inch, 110-120V with GFCI
  • Keep your above ground pool water clean, soft, and refreshing with the Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump by Intex. The all-natural sand provides excellent water filtration…
  • The built in 24-hour timer adds to the hassle-free experience with maintaining a cleaner pool. The strainer basket provides easy-cleaning, and prolongs the life of the…
  • The Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump generates a pump flow rate of 3,000 gallons per hour, ideal for above ground pools 16′ and above. This pump requires virtually no…

With Intex sand filter pump, you’ll be able to get top-notch water filtration without the need of using chemicals or other pool cleaners.

Sand is known as one of the best natural filtration material around. Sand not only clears the water of algae, but it also softens it making it more refreshed and sanitized. The unit has a 6-function control valve to filter, backwash and rinse, recirculate, drain and close the system.

The vacuum equipment also features a 24-hour timer so you can just start the cleansing process and forget about it. For additional peace of mind, the pump as a safety feature called Ground Circuit Fault Interrupter (GCFI) which senses any abnormality and automatically cuts off the power to avoid any accidents.

For a natural filtration system, the Intex Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump is surprisingly low maintenance. You only need to change the sand every five years.

Pros
  • Very low maintenance
  • 24-hour timer feature
  • A natural way of retaining the freshness of your swimming pool water
Cons
  • This is a heavy pump (because of all the sand)

Lightweight and versatile, the Polaris Vac Sweep 280 Pressure Side Ronotic Pool Cleaner is very popular among above ground swimming pool owners.

It works effectively with all kinds of the pool so we have to include it in this pool cleaner round-up.

Its main distinction is that it has a three-wheel base, which makes the equipment lightweight enough so it can be easily used to clean not only the pool bottom and walls but also the stairs.

Polaris Vac-Sweep 280 Pressure Side Pool Cleaner
  • Polaris Vac-Sweep 280 pressure side pool cleaner
  • Works in all in-ground pools; requires Polaris booster pump
  • Palletized in multiples of 16 units ;TailSweep PRO Compatibility-YES

Its versatility also extends to the type of pool surface, the Polaris Vac Sweep 280 has no problems cleaning fiberglass and vinyl surfaces.

It’s also a very fast and efficient worker as it usually gets the job done in 3 hours.

Pros
  • Lightweight enough, suitable for cleaning walls and stairs
  • Powerful cleaner
Cons
  • A bit on the expensive side

The challenge for owners of larger above ground swimming pools is to find the right equipment that is capable of cleaning the entire area. Thankfully, the Dolphin Nautilus Robotic Pool Cleaner with Dual Scrubbing Brushes is specifically designed for such scenarios that it can even clean pools of up to 50 feet in size.

And the best part is that it’s one tough automatic pool cleaner. With its dual scrubbing brushes, dirt, particles and any debris have no chance of escaping. The Dolphin is also a cut above the rest in terms of how it cleans the pool, it actually uses the smart navigation to clean the pool more efficiently.

Dolphin Nautilus Automatic Robotic Pool Cleaner with Dual Filter Cartridges, Two Scrubbing Brushes…
  • Plug & Play. Easy to use. Single button control for simple operation backed by a 1 manufacturer’s assurance. Ideal for in-ground pools up to 50 feet.
  • No random patterns. CleverClean Technology scans your pool and uses advanced algorithms to efficiently clean your pools floor and walls.
  • Dual scrubbing brushes give twice the cleaning power to attack tough dirt. Large bottom-load cartridge filters combined with a high suction rate captures leaves and fine…

The cleaner has its own filter and internal pump system so there is no need to connect it to the pool’s filtration system.

This robotic pool cleaner does not use filter bags to separate coarse and fine debris, which are very easy to remove and clean.

Pros
  • Advanced filtration system with easy to remove cartridges
  • Cleans the pool silently
  • Tangle-free vacuum operation
Cons
  • A bit heavy so it would be a challenge to get the vacuum out of the water

Factors to Consider When Shopping for an Automatic Pool Cleaner

intex auto pool cleaner

Not all pool cleaners are created equal. There are those that will do the job better than the others under certain conditions. Thus, buying decisions should take into account certain factors before finalizing the deal.

Pool Size

Obviously, pool size matters. There will always be limitations on the range of cleaning radius for every automatic cleaner.

Buying a cleaner that can’t handle the size of your pool might mean that you’ll have to clean those missed out areas manually every day.

Power Consumption

There is usually a battle between the power consumption of an equipment and that speed it gets the job done. When you want the pool cleaned in the shortest time possible, you’ll have to choose the power requirement of the robotic pool cleaner.

Just remember that the higher the power consumption of an equipment is, the bigger your power bill will get when you vacuum your above ground pool.

Ease of Use

There are cleaners that require very little input from their owners to finish a quality job. For instance, there are those which have timers on them so you can just turn them on and forget about them for a while. Generally, a robotic pool cleaner excels in this area.

Meanwhile, there are also vacuum cleaners that tend to get stuck to corners, steps, and ladders so if you don’t want to intervene too much in the cleaning process, better start reading the vacuum reviews and customer experiences of these products.

Choosing the best above ground pool cleaner will ultimately depend on you as the pool owner.

Just make sure you read the specs of the product you are interested in and verify it with the store or manufacturers beforehand.

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Links, prices and images fetched from Amazon PA API. Last updated on 2019-08-23.

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