Published on February 1st, 2023 | by Roger Corbinetti0
Best Robotic Pool Cleaner For A Fiberglass Pool
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Shopping for a robotic pool cleaner for a fiberglass pool?
Cleaning a pool is not something many people look forward to.
It takes time, sweat, and energy.
This is why many pool owners today are investing in a quality robotic pool cleaner to do the job for them.
Just like robotic vacuum cleaners used in homes, robotic pool cleaners provide a completely automated way of keeping the surface of your pool clean.
Many can also operate on a pre-set schedule, which means that your pool can be cleaned even when you are at work, sleeping, or running errands.
That said, robotic pool cleaners used to be so expensive they were limited to more expensive in-ground hard-surface pools.
Not true today. There are dozens of lower-cost options available today that work well in any fiberglass pool, lined or not.
In this guide we review the best robotic pool cleaners designed for use in a fiberglass pool.
What’s In This Buying Guide
In this guide we recommend and review the best robot pool vacuums for a fiberglass pool.
We’ve limited our shortlist to models that have been on the market for at least a year, enough time to prove their reliability.
We also include a buying guide and some frequently asked questions so that you can easily choose the robotic pool cleaner best suited for your needs.
Best Fiberglass Pool Cleaners
- Best Value: Dolphin Sigma Robotic Pool Cleaner
- Best For Large Pools: Polaris F9450
- Most Reliable: Dolphin Nautilus CC Plus
- Most Powerful: Dolphin Premier Robotic Pool Cleaner
Disclaimer: Most links below jump to Amazon.com
|Cleaner||Weight||Cord length||Pool type|
|Dolphin Sigma||Best Overall||35 pounds||60-feet||In-Ground|
|Polaris 9450 ||Best Economical||43.6 pounds||60-feet||In-Ground|
|Dolphin Nautilus CC Plus||Best in functionality||19 pounds||60-feet||In-Ground|
|Dolphin Premier Robotic Pool Cleaner||Best versatile||36.7 pounds||60-feet||In-Ground|
1. Best Value: Dolphin Sigma Robotic Pool Cleaner
Designed with a powerful triple motor and unparalleled gyroscope technology, the Dolphin Sigma robotic pool cleaner will revolutionize the way you clean your pool.
The Sigma robotic pool cleaner is designed to clean all pool surfaces up to the waterline and the tiles with pinpoint precision.
Equipped with an advanced Gyroscope, this robot is able to deliver precise positioning and control.
Its triple 3,000 RPM DC motor allows this cleaner to clean the walls of your pool all the way to the top by remaining firmly planted against them.
Moreover, its high-speed spinning brushes are capable of removing tough colonies of algae, biofilm, and bacteria from any surface without damaging it.
The Dolphin Sigma is designed with revolutionary 24-volt DC motors that use 87% less energy compared to AC motors that provide power to old-fashioned pool cleaners.
High-Quality Rubber Tracks
Instead of conventional wheels, the Sigma is equipped with continuous rubber tracks that ensure that the robotic pool cleaner maintains constant contact even if the surface is slippery.
Moreover, rubber tracks ensure improved directional control and greater force compared to wheels. As a result, this robot can climb straight up vertical walls and glides smoothly over drains.
The geometric shape, water-optimized tread, and high grip offered by the Sigma minimizes rolling resistance and provides superior weight distribution and traction.
The large, easy, and convenient filtration system of the Sigma will ensure that you never consider messy and cumbersome debris bags again.
It is designed with a massive cartridge system that has the highest capacity and the ability to trap fine and ultra-fine debris to ensure a truly clean swimming pool.
With this robotic pool cleaner, you can enjoy complete control as it allows you to program the cleaning cycle whenever you need – daily, once a week, or twice a week.
Even if you are out of town, the programmable weekly timer ensures that your pool is clean and ready to enjoy. This robot can clean 60-feet long pools in just 2.5 hours.
- Can get stuck on drains
The Dolphin Sigma robotic pool cleaner is best for you if
You want a modern, efficient robotic pool cleaner that is best-in-class… with a 3-year warranty, to boot.
2. Best For Large Pools: Polaris F9450
The F9450 from Polaris is a compact and lightweight robotic pool cleaner designed with many great features.
It is specifically engineered to navigate tight corners and overcome challenging obstacles found in complex fiberglass pool configurations.
Its powerful water jets can easily sweep out debris from corners and hard-to-reach places such as under pool steps.
The four-wheel-drive of this cleaner makes it easier to navigate the winding curves of custom-made pools. It can easily climb walls and move around corners and steps without needing to back up.
Vortex Vacuum Technology
Designed with powerful vortex vacuum technology, the Polaris F9450 has the suction power to pick up large pieces of debris to ensure exceptional cleaning.
This robot comes with large filters perfect for silt and ultra-fine sand filtration. These filters are able to handle more debris compared to other cleaners. Moreover, you can easily access them from the top of the machine, which makes it very easy to clean them.
7-day Programmable Timer
The Polaris F9450 comes with many convenient features that make it very easy to use.
It has a 7-day programmable timer that allows you to schedule your pool cleaning for the whole week.
This feature gives this robot unmatched navigational skills. The sensor scans the pool and maps out the most effective cleaning path to ensure your pool is free from all dirt and debris.
It is very easy to remove the Polaris F9450 from the pool. Just push a button, and the robot will surface and expel the water, thus ensuring effortless removal.
Dry, it weighs just 16 pounds and comes with a caddy for easier mobility.
- The remote control can be sluggish at times
The Polaris F9450 is best for you if
You want a user-friendly robotic pool cleaner for an in-ground pool up to 50 feet in length.
3. Most Reliable: Dolphin Nautilus CC Plus
If you are looking for a field-proven robotic pool cleaner that will not break the bank, then the Dolphin Nautilus CC Plus is our favorite choice.
Even though this older Dolphin model is less advanced than the Premiere or Sigma, it remains of the best units in its price range. In short, the Nautilus provides incredibly good value for money.
One of the best features introduced in this Dolphin model is its larger filters that are comparatively easier to access and clean from the top. Their huge size also means that you do not have to clean them very often.
Moreover, these filters deliver a dual-action as the pleated polyester fiber ensures really fine filtration while the mesh filter is for larger debris.
Designed with CleverClean technology, the Nautilus Plus is able to clean in-ground pools of 50-feet in just two hours. It cleans not only the floor of the pool but the walls as well right up to the waterline.
Moreover, its floating swivel cable ensures no tangles, so you can rest assured that it will not get tangled up and stop working.
Able to Make 3-point Turns
The Dolphin Nautilus Plus can easily turn 360-degrees, thus allowing this machine to reach every corner of the pool.
It is able to expel all the water from its filters in just six seconds. In addition, it comes with an option of a customizable 3-hours cleaning cycle.
EasyFix Modular Component System
Maintenance of this Dolphin model is also very easy and highly affordable. Its components are not expensive, and you can easily change them yourself. This model is also very lightweight and weighs only 22 pounds.
- It does not come with a remote or a caddy
- No detailed owners manual
The Dolphin Nautilus Plus is best for you if
You want a functional unit that is lightweight and can be used on all pool floors without any issue.
4. Most Powerful: Dolphin Premier Robotic Pool Cleaner
The Dolphin Premier robotic pool cleaner is equipped with hyper grip dual tracks and special overhead ballasts that give it an unrivaled ability to clean the waterline exceptionally well.
Easy to Use
This robotic pool cleaner is very easy to use. You just need to take it out of the box, plug it in, and you are ready to go. This unit is suitable for a 50-feet pool and is backed by a 3-year warranty.
Designed with an anti-tangle swivel, the cable of this cleaner will not get knotted or tangled. This means you do not have to monitor the cleaner once you put it in the pool.
The Premier has powerful dual scrubbing brushes that make it capable of attacking tough debris and dirt and ensuring that your waterline and walls are exceptionally clean in just three hours.
Multiple Filter Options
The Dolphin Premier comes with three filter options that ensure an exceptionally clean pool, free of even the finest dirt particles and contaminants.
- Cord may occasionally become tangled
The Dolphin Premier robotic pool cleaner is best for you if
You want a highly efficient pool cleaner that is sure to provide you with an exceptional user experience.
Why Buy a Robotic Pool Cleaner for a Fiberglass Pool?
When we talk about pool cleaning, there are a number of options; however, most of these depend on your budget and time. The easiest option is to hire someone to clean your pool – if you can afford it.
But because most pool owners do not usually want to spend that kind of money on pool cleaning, it is best to invest in some good-quality pool cleaning tools.
Robotic pool cleaners are a profitable investment, and most of them provide good value for money.
Moreover, they are the least labor-intensive among automatic cleaners. The following are some reasons to invest in one:
If you are raising a family and working full time, you would prefer to be in the pool in your free time, rather than cleaning it. Investing in a robotic cleaner saves you precious time that you can spend enjoying your pool.
Ensures a Healthier Pool
A robotic cleaner is designed to provide just the right filtration and scrubbing power to remove dirt and algae that isn’t quite possible with regular pool vacuums.
Robotic cleaners that feature smart navigation ensure that every corner of the pool is perfectly clean.
You have Health Issues
Cleaning your pool manually can be good exercise; however, all the scrubbing and reaching can be quite painful if you suffer from back problems or have any other physical limitations.
Ensures the Long Life of the Pool Pump
A large number of pool vacuums and cleaners depend on your pool’s pump for power, which can put extra strain on both the pool filters and pump.
On the other hand, a robotic cleaner works with its own filters and power source, which helps to prolong the life of your pool system.
Helps Save the Environment
Robotic cleaners are highly energy efficient. In addition, a clean pool means fewer chemicals.
Fiberglass Pools: Buying Guide
Before choosing a robotic pool cleaner, make sure you take the following parameters into consideration as they will guide you to make a better purchasing decision:
Pool Floor Material
It is vital to keep in mind your pool’s floor type and material when choosing a robotic pool cleaner.
This may not sound very important; however, it is best to remember that swimming pool floors can be irregular, rocky, flat, or sloping.
Also, consider whether your pool floor is made of vinyl, tiles, or fiberglass. Some floor materials can be damaged by using robotic pool cleaners, so make sure that your chosen cleaner is suitable for your specific pool floor material.
The Shape of Your Pool
Your pool shape plays a key role in determining the best robotic pool cleaner for you. If your pool is rectangular or round with no irregularities, you can easily find a suitable cleaner.
However, you can also find special models equipped to handle custom-shaped pools.
You also need to consider whether your pool is above-ground or in-ground. Robotic pool cleaners designed to clean the sides of a swimming pool work best for in-ground pools; however, they can put quite a stress on above-ground pool walls.
It is also essential to take your pool size into account. Each robotic cleaner comes with an extension cord, and you should pay special attention to its length.
If your pool is small, say 20-feet, you would need a shorter extension cord length as compared to a pool that is 50-feet.
The pool size also affects the performance of the pool cleaner. It would take a pool cleaner rated for a 30-foot pool only two hours to finish its job.
However, if you use the same pool cleaner to clean a 50-foot pool, firstly, you will find that the extension cord is not long enough, and secondly, it would take almost twice as long to finish the cleaning.
Moreover, it may not have the large storage capacity needed to hold the collected debris.
Stairs, Walls, Steps, and Waterlines
Most robotic pool cleaners can take care of the pool floor; however, not all models can climb walls or clean steps and stairs. Some even find it difficult to clean sharp corners or the waterline.
Typically, the more features a cleaner has, the more expensive it will be.
It is also advisable to take into account the type of debris in your pool, which depends on your geographical location, the climate, and your landscape.
All these factors contribute to the seeds, pollen, twigs, sand, bugs, leaves, and the type of dirt that drifts into your pool.
If trees surround your pool, you need a robotic pool cleaner with a bigger filtration basket that does not fill up too quickly.
Moreover, if pollen, sand, and dirt are the main types of debris in your pool, you should consider robotic pool cleaners designed with ultra-fine filters as they can easily capture the dirt from the water.
Programming and Scheduling
Some robotic pool cleaners are manual, while there are others you can schedule for daily or weekly operation.
You can leave these cleaners in the pool, or you can take them out and put them back in when the scheduled time arrives.
What to look for in a robotic pool cleaner for a fiberglass pool
When looking for a robotic pool cleaner, there are three things you should keep in mind – the kind of pool you have, the level of cleanliness you need for your pool, and the features you want in your pool cleaner.
Types of pools
Most robotic pool cleaners are designed to tackle any pool surface. However, some models are constructed particularly for an above-ground or in-ground pool.
You do not want a cleaner with a rough brush for a pool made from tile, vinyl, or fiberglass. Instead, you will need a cleaner that has a soft, grippy PVA brush.
You will also have to keep the size of your pool in mind. If you have a large pool, you will need a robotic pool cleaner that can clean the length of the pool without having to disconnect it from one power source and plug it somewhere else.
The power supply should also be at least 12 feet from the pool’s edge. Also, keep your pool dimensions in mind to know the length of the cord you need.
Level of Cleanliness
Depending on your budget or how much you use your pool, you can choose a pool cleaner that vacuums the pool floor only.
These are the cheapest and the simplest and may not come with brushes. You can also choose a high-end model that will cover more area and be more efficient.
Premium robotic pool cleaners, although expensive, can clean the cove, floor, and part of the wall. They are equipped with rotating brushes and features that make it easier for them to climb.
In addition, some top-notch models can clean the waterline, the entire wall, the floor, and the cove. These advanced models are also equipped with smart features that you can operate via mobile apps.
What features do you look for in a robotic pool cleaner?
If you are buying a pool cleaner for the first time, you may not be sure about the features you want.
Some things you should look for include suction power, warranty, filtration, programming features, swiveling cables, and power washing jets.
Pros and cons of using a robotic pool cleaner for fiberglass pool
Few things can compare to the convenience of dropping a robotic pool cleaner into the pool and letting it clean the pool for you. In addition, it has the following advantages:
Allows you to enjoy more time in your pool
No one wants their pool to be filthy, but keeping your pool clean can be a much-dreaded task. Robotic pool cleaners make this task very simple.
Moreover, they shorten the cleaning time, thus giving you the opportunity to take a cool dip whenever you want to beat the heat.
Able to pick up debris of all sizes
Robotic pool cleaners are powerful machines that can easily clean the pool from all sorts of debris. Moreover, they work independently from your pool’s circulation system and do not depend on your pool’s filter system.
Cleans the pool efficiently
Robotic pool cleaners remove debris and dirt more efficiently compared to manual cleaning, thus increasing your pool life.
In addition, they keep your filtration system free from debris. As a result, there is less need for a pool cleaning service and repairs, which in turn saves you time and expense.
They can safely work underwater
These cleaners are submersible as they run on very low voltage. You can plug their long power cords into GFCI (ground-fault circuit interrupter) outlets, and they automatically shut down in case of any electrical imbalance, thus eliminating any danger of getting an electrical shock.
Improves water circulation
Robotic pool cleaners improve water circulation and work as an additional filter to your pool. They can remove even the smallest particles, down to two microns, to ensure that your pool is really clean.
Designed with advanced computer technology
Robotic pool cleaners can effortlessly negotiate steps and climb walls, which makes it easier for them to clean up to the waterline.
Equipped with sensors, these pool cleaners can even back up once they have reached the waterline. Furthermore, these cleaners can easily clean beach-entry pools.
Robotic pool cleaners are the most expensive type of automatic cleaners. Although you might find some cheaper models that belong to the same price range as the side-suction or mid-range pressure cleaner, these models are not equipped with many features and are not long-lasting.
With so many moving parts, there is more chance of breakage in a robotic pool cleaner. The most common complaint regarding these machines is that they break down quite often. Therefore, it is best to search for models that come with good warranties.
The filter bags or cartridges in these pool cleaners will need to be cleaned after every cycle. If you have a big pool, the filters will collect a lot of debris. Unless you can splurge on disposable filters, cleaning the filters can be quite a chore.
Can damage some vinyl surfaces
Vinyl-lined pools may not be compatible with some robotic pool cleaners. Some brushes can remove the patterns or scratch the ink on the vinyl. So make sure that you choose a model that works with vinyl pool floors.
Cleaning and Maintenance
Robotic pool cleaners are expensive machines; therefore, you would want to make sure it lasts as long as possible.
As compared to simple pool cleaners like nets and brushes, a robot pool cleaner needs extra care to keep working optimally.
By following the maintenance rules given below and the guidelines provided in the owner’s manual, you can keep the cleaner running smoothly:
Remove the robot cleaner from the pool once the cycle is complete, as prolonged submersion can cause damage to the motor. Moreover, if you swim with the cleaner, there is also the danger of electrical shock.
Make sure that all the water is completely drained from the cleaner once it is out of the pool.
Thoroughly clean the unit after every use. Make sure to clean the wheels and brushes of debris and rinse the filters after emptying them.
Keep a check on the brushes and filters and change them when they wear down.
Store the cleaner out of direct sunlight when not in use and keep it protected from the elements. There is a chance of damage to the power supply if the unit is left out in the rain.
Skipping any of these steps can cause you a lot of time and money. It may sound like too much work to properly clean the filters and ensure proper storage of your cleaner, but you just have to remember the amount of time you would save.
Following these maintenance tips will allow you more time to enjoy a cool drink by the poolside and splash around with the kids.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can a robotic cleaner remove all dirt from the pool?
A robotic pool cleaner works independently of your pool’s filtration system to remove all the dirt from your pool.
These cleaners are designed with a filtration bag that collects debris of all sizes and should be cleaned after each use.
Is it costly to maintain a robotic pool cleaner?
Although robotic pool cleaners can range from $400 to $1300, they are highly effective in keeping the pool maintenance cost down.
They efficiently clean the floor and walls of your pool, thus getting rid of all micro granules of dirt.
This not only reduces the frequency of cleaning your pool but also saves you money that you would otherwise use to purchase chemicals to eliminate algae from your pool.
In addition, these cleaners consume very little electricity and work independently from your pool’s filtration system, which allows you to run your pool’s pump at a relatively lower speed.
Final Verdict: What is the best robotic pool cleaner for a fiberglass pool – and why?
We find the Dolphin Sigma robotic pool cleaner to be the best for a fiberglass pool as it is able to efficiently clean your pool of all debris and contaminants while using very little energy.
Its advanced navigation and scanning software ensure that every corner of your pool is scrubbed sparkling clean.v