How Does A Robotic Cleaner Work?

The owner of the sparkling swimming pool always wants to keep it in good order. So, the pool maintenance process should be fully understood by the owner and followed. This procedure should be ideally easy and automatic as much as possible.

For sure, maintenance of the pool depends on the size and type of the pool, the location (near a tree, a bush, or another thing), the frequency of its usage.

But on the other hand, the owner also determines the procedure based on the available budget and amount of time spent on the pool’s maintenance.

General pool maintenance consists of three steps:

  • Regular filtration system to remove all debris.
  • Chemical treatment once in several months to remove all organics and microorganisms.
  • Mechanical treatment of walls, stairs, floor by a manual, automatic or robotic cleaner.

A robotic cleaner is the latest achievement for absolutely automatic work in perfect mechanical cleaning of the pool; some cleaners even have a water recirculation system and partly replace the filtration system.

Let’s check why robotic cleaners are so good and how they work.

What is a robotic cleaner?

A robotic cleaner is a small machine with four wheels (or like a caterpillar), cleaning the surfaces of the pool filled with water.

A cleaner scrubs the walls with a brush or brushes (the number of brushes depends on the type of cleaner); on the bottom, there is a hole where the cleaner’s pump sucks debris.

The collected dirt/leaves come to the filtration bag inside the body or are attached to the cleaner. Some modern robotic cleaners can climb the stairs and the walls up to the waterline.

Typically, the filter bag has a fine or ultra fine filter cartridge that can clean recirculation water from the pump with high-quality, working as a filtration system.

The robotic cleaner should be chosen based on the size and type of the pool. The length of the cable in a set of the cleaner (cord) determines if a cleaner is able to clean all corners of the pool.

The modern models are equipped with Swivel to avoid tangling. Also, the efficiency of a cleaner is determined by the reasonable time of the swimming pool cleaning procedure – it should be no more than three hours.

Polaris models cleaners are an excellent example of the compact robotic cleaner for 50 ft above ground pools.

How does a robotic cleaner work?

A robotic cleaner represents the automatic mode of pool maintenance. So, it is working with one push of the button located on the control panel/box.

Usually, a control panel is a separate panel located near the swimming pool close to the electrical socket. After connecting the robotic cleaner to the power, it should be put into the filled swimming pool.

Then you choose the periodicity of cleaning procedures (every day, every second day, or once a week). Some cleaners have a remote control to turn them on from the phone apps and delayed start.

After these simple steps, a robotic cleaner works by itself! The LED lamp on the cleaner will show the owner that the cleaner is connected to the power and ready to work.

The low voltage power provides a start to the electrical drive of the vacuum pump, sucking water and producing water jets helping a cleaner move around/up/down the pool and scrubbing brush/brushes.

Brushes can clean the toughest dirt or algae from the pool’s surface. Tires and brushes are generally made of rubber that prevents slippage. The caterpillar-like wheels are more stable in such respect, especially for climbing the walls.

A robotic cleaner has a built-in navigation system that allows working per specified program. With each turn-on, the upgraded navigation system draws a new pool’s map with obstacles to avoid any problems during maintenance.

New robotic cleaners are not stopped reaching an obstacle; they just change the direction of their route. Also, drains are not an obstacle. They perfectly clean them as well.

The debris and dirt collected in a filter bag should be taken out after each use, the filter itself should be cleaned before it becomes dry with a water jet from the garden hose.

Some cleaners have several filters in one package; this allows putting another one while cleaning. The cleaners’ bodies should also be cleaned with water to remove all chemicals, especially from rubber moving parts. The cable should be straightened each time as well after the cleaning procedure.

To simplify taking the cleaner out of the pool with the water inside, most cleaners are equipped with Lift Systems, working after pressing the button.

Pros and cons of a robotic cleaner

Among other types of robotic cleaners (manual and pressure side/ suction side automatic models), robotic cleaners have their pros and cons:

Pros Cons
  • Can clean walls including waterline/stairs
  • Do not have to be attached to the filtration pump
  • Do water recirculation
  • Do not require manpower
  • Building a map of the pool for perfect cleaning
  • The choice of robotic cleaners is wide; you can find a good one for any specific type of pool
  • Energy efficient
  • After each use should be taken out of the pool and stored in the shade
  • Expensive
  • The moving parts can be costly for repair (but typically, the warranty covers cover such expenses)
  • Not all robotic cleaners have a remote control via phone apps


Obviously, robotic cleaners have a lot of advantages compared to other cleaners, not only the owner’s convenience.


Having all sophisticated knowledge of the modern technologies robotic cleaners provides the owners to forget about the pool maintenance and limit their activities to pressing buttons. It is also related even to the filtration systems, where man interference cannot be required.

A robotic cleaner requires only electricity and provides perfect cleaning and brushing technology for all pool sizes within a couple of hours. They can clean floors, curly walls, stairs, waterlines and go to all sharp corners.

All debris will be collected in a filter bag by a suction pump inside the compact model. The cleaner itself will choose the optimal cleaning path to be energy and time efficient. So, this is a lovely present for the pool’s owner.

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