Top 10 Best Above Ground Pool Cleaners and Vacuums Reviews

When you own a pool, you might find that cleaning up the water is difficult, keeping the edges free of algae is impossible, and keeping the water balanced is a daily fight. One of the best ways to get a leg up on all of that is to keep the bottom of your pool clean. When debris and leaves sit on the bottom of the pool, all of the “junk” gets into every other facet of the pool. Cleaning up the bottom of your pool and sides of your pool with a vacuum will make daily maintenance quick, closing up your pool for the season easy, and opening your pool like Christmas morning.

Best Above Ground Pool Cleaners and Vacuums

However, when you are looking at above ground pool cleaners or above ground pool vacuums, what should you be looking for? You have a few different options to choose from and it will really depend on what kind of pool you have, how much debris you have, or just how much work you want to put into it. Your three options are: suction side pool vacuums, pressure side pool cleaners, and robotic cleaners. Each one has pros and cons to which type is better. Let’s take a look so you can decide:

Suction Side Pool Cleaners

One of the most popular options is the suction side pool cleaners because they tend to be a little cheaper, they are easier to maintain, they are more readily available, and have fewer parts that you have to learn. They are truly a great option for first time pool owners.

This type of cleaner works with the suction line that goes into your pool. They attach to the suction line and utilize that power to push the above ground pool vacuum through the water. It scrubs against the surface, sucking up the dirt and debris and pushing it out of your pool.

However, there are a few problems with this type of cleaner as well. It does require the pool pump to run, which does put some wear and tear on the pump itself and uses more electricity to run. Not only the pump, it uses the filter as well, which is an essential (and costly) part of your pool to break. To prevent any problems, ensure that you read the instruction manual and ask questions to get any problems solved before you try to work a suction side pool cleaner on your own. Also, ensure that purchase one that works with your pool – this is not the place to get something secondhand.

Pressure Side Pool Cleaners

Another popular option among above ground pool owners is the pressure side pool cleaner. These cleaners utilize your existing pressure side line to move your cleaner throughout the floor of your pool. For some pools, especially those that are larger, your pool might require an additional booster pump. This is because the water returned back into the pool is what controls the movement. This is a popular choice because it doesn’t use your pool’s existing filtration system to filter out debris. Instead, pressure side cleaners have a filtration bag that collects the dirt and debris. This makes your filtration system do less of the work and you won’t have as much wear and tear on the filtration system – great for pools that were on the cheaper side.

People choose pressure side pool cleaners for many reasons. The first is because they tend to be lower in cost than other above ground pool vacuums. The second is because they are extremely easy to maintain, lasting for many years. Finally, people choose them because they relive pressure on the filter, a must have for people who have older systems. This type of above ground pool cleaner is long lasting and has been known to outlive the pool it cleans.

The only problems are that this type of cleaner does require an extra booster pump and the pool pump has to run the entire time it is in use.

Robotic Pool Cleaners

Robotic pool cleaners are becoming more and more popular because they do not use the existing pool equipment to run. Instead, they are self-contained and run off of power from your house. This will keep your pool’s system running efficiently and eliminate the need to replace things like filters and pumps regularly. Even better, using a robotic pool cleaner will reduce the amount of power consumption, lowering your footprint and your costs.

Many people choose this type of cleaning system because it is easy and does a better job at cleaning your pool. The cleaners will go all over your pool, not just on the bottom. It can clean your sides, your steps, and around your ladder easily. This will eliminate the time you need to scrub the sides of your pool, and it is also a lot gentler on the pool. You get superior cleaning into the cracks and crevices of your pool, making the rest of your pool easier to take care of. It also eliminates the wear and tear on your equipment.

Note that this is a more expensive system, so your upfront costs are more, but you also don’t have to replace it as frequently, so it weighs out in the end. Another problem that some people have encountered is that you do need to empty the filter before you use it and after you use it.

Now that you know a little bit about the different types of pool filters, let’s take a look at ten of the best above ground pool vacuums and cleaners that you can buy online:

Best Above Ground Pool Cleaners and Vacuums

These are some of the most highly rated pool cleaners and vacuums:

NamePictureBuy/Review
ARKSEN Automatic Swimming Pool Cleaner Vacuum Auto Inground & Above Hover with Hose Set
Read our review
Zodiac Ranger Suction Side Automatic Above-Ground Pool Cleaner

Read our review
Hayward 500 Aqua Bug Above-Ground Automatic Pool Cleaner
Read our review
Pentair 360100 Kreepy Krauly Lil Shark Above Ground Pool Cleaner
Read our review
Pentair K50600 Kreepy Krauly E-Z Vac Suction-Side Above Ground Pool Cleaner Blue/White
Read our review
Polaris Vac-Sweep 65 6-130-00 Pressure Side Automatic Pool Cleaner for Above Ground Vinyl Pools

Read our review
Aquabot POOL ROVER S2 40, US, JET, 115VAC/48VDC, BLUE

Read our review
Aquabot APRVJR Pool Rover Junior Robotic Above-Ground Pool Cleaner,Color May Vary
Read our review
Smartpool NC22 SmartKleen-Robotic Pool Cleaner
Read our review
Dolphin Escape Robotic Above Ground Pool Cleaner
Read our review

ARKSEN Automatic Swimming Pool Cleaner Vacuum Auto Inground & Above Hover with Hose Set

ARKSEN is a brand that many people trust to clean their pool systems and to do a good job at it. This kit contains everything you need, perfect for a family who just bought a pool for the first time. Everything works extremely well and flows through the system without having too much interference from you. It is an efficient system that is eco-friendly, quiet, and lasts a long time. The systems doesn’t have any wheels or gears, making it easy to clean and even easier to install – no tools needed!ARKSEN Automatic Swimming Pool Cleaner Vacuum Auto Inground & Above Hover with Hose Set

Pros:

  • Removes dirt, leaves, debris, bugs, pebbles, and even twigs from your pool bottom.
  • Doesn’t require a lot of maintenance from you because of the simplistic design.
  • Extremely durable and will withstand a lot of use thanks to high quality materials.
  • You don’t need any electricity to make it work.

Cons:

  • Won’t pick up bigger pieces of debris or heavy things like rocks.
  • Requires at least a 3/4 hp swimming pool pump or 1600ghp to function properly
  • Recommend for in-ground / above ground pool up to 16′ x 34′, so it won’t work for extremely large pools.

Zodiac Ranger Suction Side Automatic Above-Ground Pool Cleaner

The Baracuda Zodiac Ranger is one of the premier choices for above ground swimming pools, including dished-out bottoms that go up to 72 inches. It is extremely quiet, making it a great choice for neighborhoods where your homes are close together. It doesn’t have a hammer or flapper, so there isn’t anything to actually make noise. The wheel deflector helps ensure that everything in your pools gets cleaned, including the steps, ladders, and corners. The Ranger comes pre-assembled for easy installation and includes 32′ of hose.

Zodiac Ranger Suction Side Automatic Above-Ground Pool Cleaner Review

Pros:

  • The intelligent design makes this extremely easy to set up and use in many different types of pools.
  • There aren’t any gears or flappers, meaning it is very difficult to break this above ground pool cleaner.
  • Easily climbs up steps or cleans uneven pool bottoms.
  • The Flowkeeper Valve and Insta-Skim Compact self-adjusting flow control valve automatically regulates water flow

Cons:

  • This vacuum is not recommended for soft-sided or bottomed pools.
  • The Zodiac Ranger does not work in saltwater pools.

Hayward 500 Aqua Bug Above-Ground Automatic Pool Cleaner

First thing first, you should know that the Hayward 500 Aqua Bug Above-Ground Automatic Pool Cleaner is extremely cutesy and won’t be for everyone. Even though it is a really great above ground pool cleaner, it won’t be everyone’s cup of tea. You should only use it on permanently installed above ground pools because it is not easy to disassemble for storage. This means you make a commitment to the cleaner.

The Aqua Bug is easy to use and requires nothing from you once you’ve set it up. It works with your existing filtration system, meaning you don’t even have to worry about emptying or replacing debris holders.

As it cleans, the Aqua Bug moves the water, cleaning that at the same time it cleans the floor and sides of your pool. This will cut down on the use of sanitizers and chemicals in the water. If you enjoy this product, it also works well with a family of Aqua Bug supplies.Hayward 500 Aqua Bug Above-Ground Automatic Pool Cleaner Review

Pros:

  • No manual cleaning, the Aqua Bug cleans itself as it cleans your pool.
  • Doesn’t use your pool’s filtration or pumping system, saving the wear and tear on your pool.
  • Set-up takes only a few minutes, even with the hoses included.
  • Great customer service from the team, whether you just purchased the cleaner or you have had it for a few years.

Cons:

  • This vacuum is not recommended for soft-sided or bottomed pools.
  • You cannot easily take the Hayward 500 Aqua Bug Above-Ground Automatic Pool Cleaner out of your pool for storage.
  • It really works best with pools that are open year-round.

Pentair 360100 KreepyKrauly Lil Shark Above Ground Pool Cleaner

Another fun design, the Pentair 360100 KreepyKrauly Lil Shark Above Ground Pool Cleaner looks like a shark, scaring away all of the junk and debris on the bottom of your pool. This stylish design is not only cute, but it helps the above ground pool cleaner to move easily and use less energy. The sturdy nylon bristles grab the debris and push it into the shark’s hungry mouth, getting even the smallest and finest amounts of debris.Pentair 360100 KreepyKrauly Lil Shark Above Ground Pool Cleaner Review

Pros:

  • Doesn’t use your filtration or pump system too hard, saving wear and tear and offering up a supreme clean.
  • Easy to install and uninstall whenever you want to.
  • The instruction manual is incredibly detailed and contains all of the information you could need.

Cons:

  • A smaller vacuum head means that it takes longer for the Shark to clean the bottom of your pool.
  • The bristles get dirty and do require some manual cleaning from the owner.

Pentair K50600 KreepyKrauly E-Z Vac Suction-Side Above Ground Pool Cleaner Blue/White

What this EX Vac automatic pool cleaner does is absolutely amazing. It gives you one of the highest quality cleanings that you can get without a lot of work. Using the KreepyKrauly EZ vac means that you spend less time cleaningand setting up your cleaner. This type of cleaner works with any style above ground pool, from a flat bottom to a soft bottom to a dished-out pool. It works especially well with oval pools as well, which is sometimes difficult for vacuums to cover.Pentair K50600 KreepyKrauly E-Z Vac Suction-Side Above Ground Pool Cleaner Blue/White Review

Pros:

  • Cleans oval pools especially well, getting into the “end zones” of the pool.
  • Easy to install and set up without a lot of struggle.
  • Great customer service for people who need it.
  • Consistent great reviews from customers who use it.
  • Includes 32 feet of hose.

Cons:

  • No “cute” design or look to the actual vacuum.
  • If the bristles get too dirty, the machine can pause and will require manual changing. This only happens on extremely dirty pools.

Polaris Vac-Sweep 65 6-130-00 Pressure Side Automatic Pool Cleaner for Above Ground Vinyl Pools

If you have a deeper above ground pool and you need a vacuum, the Polaris Vac-Sweep 65 pressure side pool cleaner works in vinyl or fiberglass pools. While most above ground pools don’t go that deep, some people have areas that do get deeper as they age. It has enough hosing to go around a 24’ round pool and it works best for a round pool.

This is an automatic system that uses the pool’s existing system to propel the cleaner across the floor and loosen up the debris in difficult places and crevices. As it cleans, the vacuum pushes filtered water throughout the pool.Polaris Vac-Sweep 65 6-130-00 Pressure Side Automatic Pool Cleaner for Above Ground Vinyl Pools Review

Pros:

  • Goes up to 5 feet deep into the pool.
  • Cleans uneven pool bottoms just as well as it does even ones.
  • One of the best customer service teams in the world who will give you what you need and answer any questions you may have.
  • Extremely durable against wear and tear.

Cons:

  • Only comes with 24 feet of hosing, so you’ll have to buy more if you have a bigger pool or an oval pool.
  • Uses a debris bag that you have to change after each use.
  • A few customers have gotten bad machines, but they were replaced right away.

POOL ROVER S2 40, US, JET, 115VAC/48VDC, BLUE

If you would like a bigger and slightly more powerful model, the Aquabot Pool Rover S2 40 is a fantastic option based on the one above. It too actively works to make your pool healthier and cleaner, filtering out debris down to the smallest 2-micron particles. This effectively cuts down on energy costs and makes your month-to-month bills lower in general.

You can use this in different types of above ground pools, though it does require some time to do that with bottoms that aren’t even.POOL ROVER S2 40, US, JET, 115VAC/48VDC, BLUE

Pros:

  • Extremely powerful, gathers almost all of the debris and dirt, even some that you can’t see.
  • Personalized cleaning cycles that work with your pool.
  • Saves money on water, chemicals, and energy because of all of the technology within the machine.

 Cons:

  • Slightly pricey compared to many of the other items on this list.
  • The machine does have some faulty parts from time to time, but the company is great at replacing them.

Aquabot APRVJR Pool Rover Junior Robotic Above-Ground Pool Cleaner,Color May Vary

The Aquabot Pool Rover Junior claims that it can help to clean your pool cleaner and healthier by using fewer chemicals in the process, which makes the pool water less harsh for your hair and skin. This machine has the capability to filter and remove dirt down to the smallest size possible for any above ground pool cleaner – down to 2 microns.

For a quick clean, there is incredibly sucking power on this machine, filtering over 70 gallons per minute. You can set the vacuum to 2 or 3 hours using the 40-feet power cable.Aquabot APRVJR Pool Rover Junior Robotic Above-Ground Pool Cleaner,Color May Vary Review

Pros:

  • Extremely powerful suction that cleans down the smallest parts of the water.
  • Two cleaning cycles allows for personalized cycles that work with your pool.
  • Saves money on water, chemicals, and energy because of all of the technology within the machine.

 Cons:

  • Only works for flat-bottom pools and doesn’t work as well with drop out pools.
  • You will have to work carefully with this machine and it may have to go for repairs from time to time.

Smartpool NC22 SmartKleen-Robotic Pool Cleaner

This is a slip-free cleaner that uses the traction from within the machine to give you the maximum power when it cleans. There is built-in technology that works more thoroughly on dirty spots because it is self-driven – it doesn’t need the wall or you to push it in the right direction. It also uses automatic shut-off so that you can “set it and forget it.”

The SmartKleen is compact, making it easier to store than some of the other models on this list. It works great with pools of any size or shape, meaning you can keep it through a few pools or even resell it when you are done with it.

If you have an extremely dirty pool, there is the capability to use an extra-large filter bag capacity that stays lightweight enough so that your pool will be cleaned with the same efficiency.Smartpool NC22 SmartKleen-Robotic Pool Cleaner Review

Pros:

  • Changes direction by itself to get the dirtiest parts of your pool clean.
  • A 40’ power cord means that you don’t have to attach your own extension cords.
  • Has a “quick drain system” so that it is lightweight when you try to remove it from the pool.

 Cons:

  • Utilized a debris bag, which some people don’t like because of the work.
  • Doesn’t work as well with oval pools or larger pools because of the 2-hour shut off.

Dolphin Escape Robotic Above Ground Pool Cleaner

One of the newest and most exciting cleaners of the year, Dolphin Escape Robotic Above Ground Pool Cleaner is a great investment for anyone who needs an above ground pool cleaner that will last for a long time. It is robotic and just looks cool skimming across the bottom of your pool. One of the biggest reasons that people like this cleaner is because it is extremely light and doesn’t take a lot of preparation to clean it. Note that it is slightly bigger than some of the other models.

You should also note that since this above ground pool vacuum is a bit newer than some of the others, there haven’t been as many customer reviews as with the other models.

Dolphin Escape Robotic Above Ground Pool Cleaner Review

Pros:

  • Extremely easy to set up from the first time you use it to a long time after storage.
  • Works quickly and efficiently to clean the bottom of your pool.
  • One of the best customer service teams in the world who will give you what you need and answer any questions you may have.

Cons:

  • Not many customer reviews because there hasn’t really been enough time to figure out the kinks and problems.
  • Larger than other cleaners and requires more space to clean it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *