The Pool & Spa Show ~ 2018 Review

Most years I try and get down to the Pool and Spa show in Atlantic City to review the new pool cleaners from the major manufacturers. This is a dealer show and is not really focused on pool owners and I am only interested in the robotic pool cleaners, as opposed to all the products for the pool and spa market. This year it looks like there are few new offerings from the major manufacturers.


Keeps their current lines of AquaVac 500, TigerShark, and SharkVac  but I did hear that new products focused on easier servicing were in the future.


Maintains the Prowler line of cleaners subcontracted by Maytronics this year with updated color schemes. It should be noted that these cleaners did not get the updated swivel Maytronics has introduced in its line.


Polaris leads with its Wi-Fi enabled 9650 iQ Sport robotic pool cleaner, which is a no brainer providing you have their matching iAquaLinkTM Control. This year a cable swivel is included on their top models. A downside to this cleaner is that it only has one brush.


Maytonics did not have a booth again this year. I did hear that part of their 2018 S line has the much requested cable swivel which would be a significant upgrade.



A new company was at the show offering robotic pool cleaners this year. Saltech with their 8Streme line of Robotic Pool Cleaners. The demo cleaner in their booth warrants a closer look. They import the cleaners from overseas and offer Robotic pool cleaners at a fraction of the cost of the competition. More on this company when I have more hands on experience. Pictured below is there Black Pearl.











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2016 The NESPA Pool & Spa Show Summary

As always, my summaries are slanted toward robotic pool cleaners and anything else that I think maybe of be interest to you. Below are some comments about the major manufacturers and their product lines for the upcoming season:

In terms of cleaners they have no new offerings and continue to OEM the robotic cleaner from Maytronics under their own Prowler name.

The Zodiac representative mentioned that there would be no changes for 2016, however they did note that the updated motor assay part numbers from 2015 would be integrated into the 2016 parts manual. Not of interest to consumers except if you are interested in a robotic cleaner from this company, make sure you are getting it from new stock with the updated motor.

Hayward has made some changes to their 500 Class robotic pool cleaners with an updated power supply and a new more modern look. A picture of their commercial unit, the 500C is below.

500 Class





Their residential unit, the AquaVac 500, is pictured below.






In terms of new products, there was one item that did standout; it is called the Skimdevil™. More detail to come in my next blog.

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Shopping for new robotic pool cleaner can be tedious and difficult with so many options each manufacturer has for you to choose from.  Here are five basic items to consider in your purchase.

  1. At least one brush. If the cleaner isn’t brushing the pool surfaces, it’s just doing half its job.
  1. A cord swivel or advanced scanning and mapping programs. “Random pattern” cleaners can get hopelessly tangled and a swivel can help prevent these issues. If the cleaner does not have a swivel, make sure it has an advanced program and sensors that make a swivel unnecessary.
  2. Ball Bearings. Bearings reduce wear and stress. Make sure that the cleaner you select has them in the wheel tube ends.
  3. A cartridge filter. These are not required, but they are easier to empty and clean than standard filter bags.
  4. A reputable company. Make sure your cleaner is made and sold to you by a company that stands by their product, with a good warranty and good customer service.

Would you like some recommendations for a pool cleaner or have questions or comments about this article? Give Great Blue Pool Supply a call at 973-896-1069.

Shop for pool cleaners now at Great Blue Pool Supply – Click here!

copyright © 2015 GBPS, LLC

To Swivel or Not to Swivel…


For at least a decade, the in-line cord swivel has been a staple on Maytronics cleaners. In fact, this feature is so important that I usually recommend a swivel over a remote control when recommending new cleaners. Playing catch up the competition has also recognized the importance of this feature and two companies (Hayward & Aquabot) have announced the inclusion of swivels on some of their cleaners just this year!

The swivel is an essential component, because it acts as a safety mechanism to protect the cable from damage caused by twisting. In the worst case scenario, a robotic pool cleaner consistently makes turns in one direction until it twists the cord into a knot.

One might ask: How can a cleaner’s power cord get so tangled?

  • The lack of a mapping or scanning program;
  • Broken or worn drive belts or tracks;
  • Worn brushes;
  • Faulty drive motors; or
  • Cleaner handles are not reversed as recommended.

Trauma to the cable can be compounded if this cleaner is on a weekly program where a series of cleaning cycles have been scheduled and the problem is not immediately identified. In some severe cases, the cord is so tangled that the internal wires are broken requiring replacement. Repairs can be costly. Cables can cost up to $800.00 for the part alone, not including installation charges.

So, why after all these years has Maytronics removed the swivel from the design of their new Active line of cleaners? The answer is simply that with their new generation of tracking and mapping programs the cleaner doesn’t twist the cable and the swivel is no longer needed. So when shopping for a new cleaner make sure it has a swivel or is advanced enough not to need one like the Maytronics Active series!

Maytronics Active Series at GBPS

 copyright © 2015 GBPS, LLC


At a recent distributors open house I had an opportunity to speak with my local Maytronics representative to learn more about their new Active Series line of cleaners. Here are five new things I learned:

    The basket has an integrated handle.  As the lid is opened, the spring loaded handle swings up allowing for easy removal of the basket from the cleaner.
    The cleaner is fitted with three motors; a pump motor, a drive motor and a servo motor.  The servo motor controls the PowerStream mobility system, which provides enhanced navigation.
    A PVA brush is no longer needed for traction on tile or other slippery surfaced pools. The downward force of the rear facing jet creates enough traction for any type of pool surface.
    Two bluetooth programs are available on the Active 30 and Active 30i.  Not only is there a bluetooth program for the owner, but there is also one for the service technician too!  This gives the service technician the ability to run advanced diagnostics and gain service information.
    Read more about this in the next article!

All these innovations once again prove why Maytronics is the leader of the robotic pool cleaner industry! Shop for an Active Series cleaner today, click the link below.

 Maytronics Active Series at GBPS

 copyright © 2015 GBPS, LLC

New Pool Cleaners for 2015

With snow piling up here in the east it is difficult to think about pools or pool equipment; however pool equipment manufacturers have been busy. Below are some notes on new innovative products Great Blue Pool Supply saw at The Pool and Spa Show in Atlantic City last month.


Hayward is introducing a new product line into the US market this year; the AquaVac 500 series.  This series consists of three cleaners: the #RC3431CU (basic unit) is offered without a caddy, the #RC3431CUY is the same unit offered with the caddy and the #500C is for small to medium commercial pools up to 40K gallons. These ground-breaking cleaners incorporate an easy to use top loading, large capacity filter basket and an all-important cable swivel.  Hayward has also integrated a handle into the body of the cleaner so it can be easy removed from the pool.  This caddy is the best looking I have seen on the market. The only possible drawback we see to this cleaner is its lack of a remote control.

Originally slated for 2014 in the US, this new line was first introduced into the European and Canadian markets during 2013. Considering this cleaner is manufactured in Clemmons, NC, I find it a bit unusual to initially ship a non-field tested product abroad as opposed to keeping it close to home in the event that any major refitting that might need to be done. One could speculate that this move was more a “red tape” issue than that of a marketing strategy.  As we know, Hayward has needed a fresh product to update their King Shark and Shark Vac lines in order to compete with Zodiac’s 9300 series.


Many of us understand that brushing the pool surfaces is an effective, if not essential, component in keeping a pool clean. Maytronics understands this and has addressed the issue remarkably well with its release of a new line of four cleaners. This new line is called the A Series, for “Active” brushing.  The entire line features brushes that rotate at twice the speed of the wheels, making the brushing action very thorough.  The line includes the Active 10, the first unit designed for above ground pools from this manufacturer. For in-ground cleaning solutions, they have introduced the Active 20, Active 30 and the most advanced, Active 30i. In addition to the active brushing feature, the A Series also has a very simple to use, top accessing filter basket with an additional fine basket insert. The additional basket is available for all, but standard on the higher end units. Lastly, both the Active 30 and Active 30i employ a smart phone remote feature via an app download. Both light in weight and fitted with an integral handle, a cart is also available to round out the offering.

Not only has Maytronics released an entire new product line residentially, but they have updated some of their commercial units as well. The C3 has been upgraded to dual motor drive with a remote control and the C4 has been upgraded to include a gyro system for enhanced efficiency.


The representative from Pentair mentioned that their current robotic cleaner offerings have not changed for the 2015 pool season, however only two are listed on their website: The Prowler 820 and 830.  Both of these units are supplied by Maytronics.


Zodiac mentioned only minor, unspecified tweaks to their current, very popular and innovative 9300 series cleaners. If we get any more info we will post it here. If you are a consumer interested in one of these products, we would recommend purchasing the newer version as these upgrades will reflect a fine tuning of the design and will most likely enhance performance, longevity, or both. One of the major drawbacks of this product is the lack of a cable swivel.

In just a few short weeks pool season will be here and I hope this gets you thinking about your pool and pool cleaner. Now is a good time to search for a new cleaner when they are still available or to get your current cleaner serviced before your pool is opened.  Give Great Blue Pool Supply a call (973-896-1069) for a quote on a new cleaner or drop off your current cleaner for a tune up!

 copyright © 2015 GBPS, LLC


If you live where it snows, then you will find yourself with lots of snow on your swimming pool cover during the winter months.  You should know the importance of removing the snow off your cover whether you have an above ground or in-ground pool.  Here’s why:

For an in-ground pool, snow can add weight on the cover that may cause harmful pressure on the cover causing stretching, damage and improper coverage.
For an above ground pool, snow can put weight on the cover that will ultimately pull the pool walls towards the center of the pool damaging the top rail, fencing and walls of your swimming pool.

Depending on the quality of your cover, the snow can also cause other issues, like tearing, damage to anchors, or the destruction of the cover entirely.  Without proper removal, snow weight can cause damage to almost anything.  Do you know the weight of snow?  Well here are some facts to consider:

A cubic foot of settled snow weighs 12.49 to 18.73 pounds. A cubic foot of wind-packed snow weighs 21.85 to 24.97 pounds. A cubic foot of solid ice can weigh up to 57.43 pounds.  This shows that snow can cause much more stress to the cover than it was designed use.

 While these are our suggestions, please always refer to the pool covers manufacturer for recommendations to remove accumulated snow. Some may recommend pushing the snow off your pool covers using a push broom or foam snow pusher (picture below).  We do not recommend a snow shovel, as the metal edges can easily tear a pool cover.

Foam Snow Pusherbroom





Once the snow melts into a puddle of water, you can use a pool cover water removal pump to eliminate the last of the extra weight off you swimming pool cover.  For reviews on swimming pool cover pumps, read


copyright © 2015 GBPS, LLC

Dolphin C6 versus DuraMax Duo

Dolphin C6

Dolphin C6

DuraMax Duo

DuraMax Duo






Have you ever wondered what the difference was between the commercial units of Maytronics Dolphin C6 and the Aquabot Duramax Duo?  We thought so.  In the attached article we explain the difference between these two units.

Dolphin C6 Plus versus DuraMax Duo

If you have any further questions the article might not address, please give us a call, (973) 896-1069.

Happy comparing!

Mechanical Pool Cleaners…

Have you ever wonderful how many different types of mechanical pool cleaners there are in the swimming pool cleaning market?

We thought you might find this useful information in your pool cleaner search, so we put together a description of all the different types of mechanical pool cleaners offered for all types of swimming pools.


If you any questions about mechanical pool cleaners or need more explanation, please give us a call, (973) 896-1069.

Happy reading!

Looking for a new residential pool cleaner?

So for those of us living in the mid-Atlantic region, we are getting a touch of warmer weather with hints of summer around the corner.  Memorial Day weekend is usually our big weekend for the first dip in our pools.  Yards have been groomed, patios have been cleaned and furniture brought out of storage, and the swimming pool has been uncovered and cleaned.  After all that hard work, whether you have done it yourself or had a company “open” your pool for you, you realize that your robotic pool cleaner doesn’t start or doesn’t move up the walls, or pick up the debris on the bottom of the pool.

Now what do you do? What kind of cleaner do I buy or can I just get it fixed?

At Great Blue Pool, we can offer a detailed diagnosis of your cleaner’s problem as well as offer a repair estimate.  If you decide that this is more economical to replace it, we can offer some suggestions and quotations on a new cleaner.

2014 Residential Pool Cleaner Specification Chart
For optimal viewing of this chart, once opened, please use the + magnifying glass in the bottom right-hand corner of the document when using Google Chrome and the + at the top of the page when using Firefox.

We have also created a Key for the chart to better explain the information that is given and why it may be important to you.  See below.
Key for 2014 Residential Specification Chart

Please feel free to call us if you have any questions or just place an order online.

Happy Swimming!