There are basically three different types of automatic pool cleaners used to maintain a swimming pool. The first type is the automatic pressure-side cleaner that works by using water pressure coming from a pump. The pump may either be the main circulation pump for the pool or it can be a pump specifically set up as a booster pump for this type of cleaner. Inside the pump is a bag that collects all debris that has been pushed out by the cleaner as it moves throughout the water.
This type of pool cleaner will not suck large debris such as leaves into the pool's filter. Having a dedicated booster pump for this purpose will help keep the pool cleaner for longer periods of time, meaning less maintenance. Have a non-dedicated pump and using the main circulation pump is less expensive because you don't need to install the extra pump. It is good to remember that pressure-side pool cleaners cannot filter small particles through the bag inside the pump.
A second type of cleaner, the automatic suction-side cleaner, relies on suction to move around the pool, sucking up debris from the pool floor. It pulls water through the filtration system, turning more water over in a shorter amount of time, at the same time sucking up the debris. Some may have the ability to scrub the pool's side walls, creating less maintenance for the pool owner.
The suction-side cleaner removes finer particles from the water, compared to the pressure-side cleaner, and is cheaper to install. It does not work well for an area with a lot of trees or a pool that would have large debris in the water on a regular basis. The leaf problem can be eliminated by purchasing a leaf trap that would collect the leaves before they get stuck in the pump basket. Filters need to be kept clean to keep water flowing from the main pump since this type of automatic pool cleaner relies on the suction from the main pump to move it around.
Robotic pool cleaners are the third type of automatic pool cleaners available on the market. These type of automatic pool cleaners are ran from electricity through an outside outlet. A transformer then converts the energy to a low voltage that can be transmitted through a long cord into the electric motors inside the unit.
The robotic pool cleaner works by vacuuming debris directly into a pump inside the unit. It has the ability to learn the pool's shape because of a computer chip implanted in the system. These systems can be run using a remote control to spot clean the pool when necessary.
The pump inside the unit that vacuums up the debris causes the water to circulate in the pool. It is very efficient in eliminating tiny particles that other cleaners cannot. It also has the ability to scrub pool walls and even the tile line. The downside to the robotic pool cleaner is it is the most expensive of the three automatic pool cleaners, and it needs to be removed from the pool after each use. If any repairs were needed, they would probably need to be done by a professional.