Robotic Pool Cleaners May Just Give Another Meaning to Robocop!

by Pool Builders on 11-04-2008 in Articles

Stop, look and listen- there is a different kind of cleaning system available and it just may fit the bill for those wanting to clean up the 'riff raff' in their swimming pools.

Robotic pool cleaners are a fairly new option for clearing debris from the water. It is defined as a cleaner that is self contained, meaning it works on its own power source and is not powered by any suction or return line. They are autonomous and do not attach to the circulation system. The transformer is plugged into an outlet and a cord from the unit plugs into the transformer. A pump motor then draws debris into the unit's filter and a drive motor moves the unit around the pool. These robots have an internal microchip that guides their motion. They move around by either a pre-programmed pattern that is entered by the owner or they have sensors that "feel" the edges of the space and work systematically back and forth to cover nearly every inch of the walls and sides. Some even come with a remote that can control the movement while the operator enjoys the sun and clean water. There is no need for someone to stand around and manually vacuum; plus,because it does not work off of the pump and filtration system, the water is not as stirred up. With the water calmer, much of the dirt and sediment remains at the bottom allowing for better filtering. The cloth bag, contained inside the filter, captures the tiniest particles, including algae and some bacteria. Many owners also find they do not have to run the filtration system as often as with suction side or pressure side varieties.

Maintenance is also easy with robotic pool cleaners. The self-contained filter is removed, debris is cleaned out and the cloth bag is put back in place. The cloth bag is easy to manipulate and to clean and often catches other items such as pool toys. One drawback is the cost as they generally run more than other kinds. In choosing the one that is right for you, first look at your budget. As they increase in functionality, the purchase price will go up. Suction side cleaners tend to be the least expensive, robotic cleaners the most pricey, and the pressure side falling somewhere in between. As with any new technology, the longer it is on the market, the more the prices drop. When the robots first came out, they were only a reality for the wealthy, now the pricing is such that many owners can afford this convenience. So the issue becomes, how much is the owner's time worth? After all, it can be a crime to waste the weekend cleaning!

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