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Much to consider about robotic cleaners

Robotic cleaners operate independent of the pool plumbing often travelling on tracks or wheels, carrying their own filter and pump with them.

Power is supplied by a 24-volt power supply or by 120-volt household current, both plugged into an ordinary AC outlet.

Among the greatest advantages of robotic cleaners is that they collect debris in their own filter bag, thereby increasing the pool’s filter cycles by removing the debris that would otherwise be picked up by the pool filter. Like other cleaners, they also help mix chemicals throughout the pool.

Like anything else, when it comes to robotic pool cleaners, there are key features that it pays to be on the look-out for to evaluate the advantages of one versus another.

For example, what kind of debris is it capable of handling? On properties with large trees and other vegetation, the ability to handle leaves and even acorns is a bonus. How adept is it at climbing walls and cleaning the water line? In terms of maintenance of the robot, how easy it to clean the filter?

The following is a short list of items to consider: Waterline ability – The tile line is where scum, composed of lotions, dead skin cells, as well as algae and bacteria, can accumulate if not cleaned on a regular basis. Look for a robot that has the capacity to clean the water line, which must be outfitted with special software, sensors and motors to accomplish this task, and typically costs over $1,000. Be sure that it is advertised specifically to clean the tile line, distinct from wall climbing. Otherwise, you’ll be cleaning the tile line by hand.

Shape of pool – Pretty much all cleaners can handle the floor, but not all can climb walls, reach corners, or clean stairs. Read customer reviews to determine that the robot has the features required.

Anti-tangle cord – With robotic cleaners, tangled cables used to be the norm, but nowadays, 360 degree anti-tangle swivels are incorporated on many robotic cleaners. Tangled cords are among the leading complaints when there is no swivel on the robot because performance and efficiency are lost. Its also a frustrating waste of time.

Cord Length – pay attention to the robot’s cord length, which obviously must be long enough for the robot to reach the length of the pool. With smaller pools, however, an extra long cord is a disadvantage because it can get tangled with the unit and shut it down.

Wheels or tracks – There are two ways a robotic cleaner can propel itself through the water: either on wheels or on tracks. For the best traction, tracks are unsurprisingly superior. That results in better contact with the surface of the pool, which generally results in greater efficiency.

Scrub brushes – some cleaners only have suction power, so additional wall brushing will still need to be done manually, so it’s a good idea to get a cleaner with good scrubbing brushes that can dislodge algae from surfaces so it can be sucked up.

Multimedia debris capacity – For pools that have a variety of different types of debris, a robot with multimedia capacity is a bonus.

For fine debris and algae, a microfilter can trap the small stuff. For larger leaves or acorns, an oversized leaf bag is the ticket. Filter capacity is an important feature to pay attention to if you don’t want to spend a lot of time emptying the bag.

Weight – Consider the robot’s weight, which is an important feature since it will need to be lifted out of the pool. And don’t forget that it will be even heavier once it has collected water and debris. Heavier units may come with wheeled caddies, which can be a real back saver, enabling the user to roll it from storage to the pool.

Easy-to-find parts – When you find a robot you think you like, check around that you can find replacement parts. Filters, drivebelts, impellers and more will need to be replaced once in a while, so its important to know that you can find them, rather than having to wait two weeks in the middle of the season.

Warranty – Robotic cleaner repairs can get pretty expensive, so it’s a good idea to save your customers the money and recommend a robot with a long warranty – at least three years, and encourage customers to purchase extended warranties if possible. With all of the moving parts and components in a robot, there’s a lot that can break down. And the cost of those repairs can be nearly half of the robot’s value, so save your customers some money, and go with a premium robot with at least a 3-year warranty.

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