Battery-powered vacuums are strong enough to clean pools in minutes. They have a powerful internal pump that works on any surface — vinyl, concrete, fiberglass, or tile.
What’s great about these rechargeable pool cleaners is that there are no hoses or cords to mess with, and they don’t put added stress on the filtration system because they have an internal debris chamber.
We rated the top 7 vacuums based on a wide variety of needs.
Top 7 Cordless Pool Vacuums (2023 Review)
- Best Budget: Intex Handheld Rechargeable
- Best Seller: Pool Blaster Catfish Ultra
- Premium: Oxseryn Cordless
- Overall: Pool Blaster Max
- Best Above Ground: Efurden Handheld
- Best Leaf Skimmer: Pool Blaster Leaf Vac
- Best Hot Tub Vac: WYBOT Cordless
Cordless Pool Vacuums Compared
Best Above-Ground Vacuum
Best Leaf Vac
Best Hot Tub Cleaner
Which Is Better: A Cordless Pool Vacuum Or An Automatic Pool Cleaner?
Both styles of cleaners serve a specific purpose but overall, a battery-powered cleaner is better. As with anything, there are pros and cons to each but the pros outweigh the cons when it comes to battery-powered vacuums.
Water quality is essential for the health of your pool, and having a decent pool vacuum is a key factor in preventative maintenance.
- Easy to use
- Self-contained unit
- Doesn’t hook up to the pool’s filtration system
- Manual labor
- Slower than an automatic cleaner
Why Choose A Cordless Rechargeable Pool Vacuum?
Battery powered pool cleaners clean just as well as automatic cleaners for a fraction of the price.
These rechargeable pool vacs have brushes on the bottom of the head. It will actually brush at the same time it vacuums, saving you from having to brush as an additional separate task. The brushes combined with the suction make a battery pool cleaner efficient at picking up debris.
Cordless pool vacuums also have a debris container to trap debris, which saves the debris from clogging the pool’s filter. This is especially handy if you have a lot of debris. The container is easily detachable, so you can clean it out when you’re done cleaning.
I use a rechargeable pool cleaner on my pool weekly, and I get the job done in under 30 minutes.
What To Look For In A Pool Vac That’s Rechargeable
There are a number of features to look for in a battery-powered vacuum to ensure you get the right cleaner for your pool.
Battery-powered cleaners can clean any surface, such as vinyl liners, fiberglass, concrete, shotcrete, tiles, pebblecrete. Other pool vacuums need to be matched to the pool’s surface.
The most important factors to consider are:
- Suction: The more suction power a cleaner has, the faster it will clean.
- Brushes. Try to get as many brushes as you can on the sides of the head as well as the bottom. The brushes work hand in hand with the suction for efficient cleaning.
- Shape of the head. Triangular heads are designed for round and oval pools, while rectangular heads are for rectangular pools.
- Size of the head. This one’s pretty simple. Get a small head for a small pool, and get a large head for a large pool.
- Push-button start. This isn’t as important as the other features, but it does make the job easier because all you have to do is push the button, and the vacuum starts up.
Size and Shape of Your Pool
As I touched on earlier, the size and shape of your pool determine which cleaner you’ll need.
First, let’s look at how the size of your pool affects the cleaner. The bigger the pool means, there will be larger volumes of debris and sediment a cleaner has to deal with. This also means that it will take longer to clean.
When choosing a battery vacuum for large pools, you’ll need a heavy-duty cleaner with long battery life and good filtration. If you have a smaller unit, you may have to dump the debris canister multiple times, or worse, the battery will die, and you will have a half-clean pool.
The shape of a pool is an important factor that many people overlook when looking at vacuums.
There are different shapes of cleaners to match different size pools. For instance, if you have a rectangular vacuum head and try to clean a round or oval pool, you won’t be able to clean around the curves.
Triangular heads aren’t good for rectangular or square pools because they can’t get into the corners.
Battery Life and Charging Time
The size of your pool is a big factor in choosing a rechargeable pool vacuum, and one of the reasons is battery life.
How long do rechargeable pool vacuums last? Fully charged batteries last anywhere from 45 minutes to 3 hours. The charging time also varies from 2 to 6 hours.
I suggest a portable pool vacuum that runs for at least one hour for larger pools. It probably won’t take long to clean your pool, but if there is a heavy leaf load, the vacuum has to work harder, which runs the batteries down faster.
Suction Power and Filtration System
The suction power and filtration is an important considerations when looking at any type of pool cleaner. The size and amount of debris will determine how much power you need.
For instance, if you only have everyday sediments like sand and dust, a smaller (and less expensive) cleaner will suit your needs. However, if your pool is unscreened and surrounded by trees or bushy landscaping, you need a heavier-duty cleaner.
A smaller cleaner cannot handle larger debris like leaves and twigs for very long. This can get frustrating when you’re cleaning, and you will overwork the motor.
The good news is that battery-powered vacuums aren’t expensive, and you can get a model to fit your needs for under $250 at the really high end of the price range.
Weight and Ergonomics
Vacuums don’t weigh that much out of the water, but once you have it submerged in your pool and you have to push it around, it weighs a bit more. A heavier head will stay on the bottom easier, and this is the goal.
Most vacuums weigh around 3-5 pounds, but some are lighter options. Plus, it gets heavier once you start filling the container with debris. I suggest a vacuum that weighs around 2 pounds. This is a comfortable weight that can be handled while submerged.
You also want a vacuum that is efficient. All of the vacuums we reviewed are efficient, but they serve different purposes. Some are meant for heavier debris, while others are better suited for everyday sediment and routine cleaning. An efficient cleaner will be properly weighted, have at least a one-hour run time, and have a swivel head where the pole connects to the vacuum head.
A swivel head is an overlooked detail by many people.
If the pole connector doesn’t swivel, maneuvering the vacuum around is difficult and tends to get stuck or flip over.
Cordless Pool Vacuums Reviewed
We have reviewed the top seven battery-powered cordless pool vacuums on the market right now. Since every pool has individual needs, we looked at vacuums with different strengths and features.
There are everyday vacuums on this list, but there are also vacuums specifically designed for leaves, hot tubs, and small debris.
A Warning About Negative Reviews
It’s best to take negative reviews with a grain of salt because pool vacuums are not a one-size-fits-all cleaner. Some are designed for smaller areas, while others are designed for larger areas.
I’ve come across a lot of negative reviews simply because the vacuum that the person is complaining about wasn’t designed for what they were using it for.
With that being said, let’s take a look at the 7 best battery-powered vacuums.
1. Best Budget: Intex Handheld Rechargeable
- Suitable for all pure spas and above-ground pools up to 18' diameter
- Includes two interchangeable brush heads
- Automatic shutoff feature when the vacuum is not submerged in water
The Intex Handheld Rechargeable is a lightweight aluminum vacuum that is easy to use and has decent suction power. It is the perfect size for small pools and spas. It has smooth maneuverability and is great for cleaning crevices and stairs.
It must be fully charged before the first use, which takes around four hours. Once charged, the battery life is about 45 minutes.
It is easy to disassemble and clean, a big selling point for most customers. The Intex is durable and can be used daily. I have read several reviews that state that it lasts up to two years before any major issues.
- Lightweight (7 lbs.)
- Comes with two vacuum head
- Picks up larger debris like pine needles and leaves
- Doesn’t have a long battery life (45 mins)
- Doesn’t pick up sediment well
- Filter clogs easily
2. Best Seller: Pool Blaster Catfish Ultra
- Effectively removes dirt, sand, & leaves from pools & spas
- Highly regarded cleaner known for its performance
- Cordless & rechargeble with 45 min run time
There are several Pool Blasters on this list and for good reason. Since their inception in 2001, they have made a name for themselves as making quality cleaners. Arguably the best seller is the Pool Blaster Catfish Ultra.
The Catfish is lightweight and easy to use in any size pool or spa. The suction and brushes are strong enough to pick dirt, sand, and bigger debris like leaves.
My favorite feature is the push button start. You submerge the vacuum and press the button, and you’re good to go. This is an efficient cleaner that can be used on all surface finishes. It’s durable and is backed by a one-year warranty.
- Great suction
- Easy maneuverability
- Wide vacuum head with a crevice tool
- Battery life of 45 minutes, but the vacuum is efficient enough to clean a pool in that amount of time
- The debris chamber needs to be cleaned several times during the cleaning
3. Best Premium: Oxseryn Cordless
- Cordless - no hoses & up to 60 mins from one charge
- Effectively cleans hot tubs, kiddie pools, smaller pools
- Large nozzle prevents clogging
The Oxseryn Cordless is an innovative vacuum that is ideal for cleaning hot tubs and smaller pools but also has a 69” telescoping handle to clean larger areas. My favorite feature is the extra large nozzle that prevents clogging due to large leaves.
The vacuum head is designed to clean corners and stairs easily. Once you retract the telescopic pole, it has a unique handle, similar to a handheld vacuum cleaner, that makes it ergonomically efficient. It tends to float off the bottom a little, which makes it tricky to clean the bottom of a larger pool.
- Ergonomic design makes it comfortable to use
- One-hour battery life
- Easy-to-clean filter
- Battery case may leak over time
- The warranty information is hard to find
- It weighs 8 pounds, which may be too heavy for some
4. Best Overall: Pool Blaster Max
- Effectively cleans pool edges & acts as a spot cleaner
- Great for pools, spas and hot tubs
- Cordless & up to 1 hr battery life
If the Pool Blaster Catfish is an efficient vacuum, meet the big brother in the lineup.
This ergonomic Pool Blaster Max vacuum includes six brushes on the bottom of the head so it scrubs as it vacuums. The head is triangular and does a good job cleaning the edges of round and oval. It is lightweight, maneuverable, an excellent spot cleaner, and has the power to clean a whole pool.
It may be a bit pricey, but all in all, it’s worth the price. It’s a durable machine that can easily last over three years without major maintenance and, like all Pool Blasters is covered under a solid warranty.
If you’re looking for a good cleaner for your pool toolbox, this is the vacuum for you.
- One-hour run time
- Durable and long-lasting
- Great for spot cleaning
- Doesn’t pick up heavier debris like pebbles or rocks
- Small debris chamber
5. Best Above-Ground Vacuum: Efurden Handheld
- Up to 60 mins run time from one charge
- Ideal for above ground pools, spas, hot tubs
- Picks up sand, small stones & other debris
The Efurden Handheld made the list because of all the positive feedback I found in my research. It comes in various colors, has two detachable vacuum heads, and has a running time of one hour.
A sensory switch shuts the motor off after 60 seconds if it’s not submerged. This prevents the idling motor from draining the battery. The telescoping pole does extend to 69”, but the vacuum won’t service an inground pool well because of its small debris chamber and filter.
- Powerful suction
- Long battery life
- Easy to clean
- Small chamber will have to be cleaned multiple times for a large leaf load
- Has an 8-hour charging time, although it does have a long run time of about an hour
6. Best Leaf Vac: Pool Blaster Leaf Vac
- Great for leaves, seeds & twigs
- Reliable & trusted best seller
- Cordless & hoseless - works with batteries
If you have a large amount of leaves in your pool, the Pool Blaster Leaf Vac is a great portable vac to have handy. It’s less than $100 and is designed for picking up leaves.
I recommend skimming and using a plastic garden rake to scoop out the leaves first, no matter what cleaner you’re using. This leaf vac has a large mesh bag and a propeller that lets it easily pick up leaves from the bottom of the pool.
8 AA batteries power it and have an amazing running time of 3 hours. It is not an everyday cleaner, but it shines if you have abundant leaves in your pool.
- Very long running time
- Comes with a warranty
- Not durable. It may only last 2 seasons, but for the price point and the job it does, it’s a good pick
- Battery pack corrodes. Take the batteries out in between use
7. Best Hot Tub Cleaner: WYBOT Cordless
- Cordless & lightweight design
- Perfect for hot tubs, small pools, kiddie pools
- Lasts up to 60 mins with one charge
WYBOT makes quality products, and this battery-powered WYBOT Cordless hot tub cleaner is no exception. It only weighs five pounds, making maneuvering around a hot tub easy.
The ergonomically designed head is great for smaller areas, and it is detachable. When the vacuum head is detached, it exposes a cone head for hard-to-get areas. I like the fine mesh filter because it traps even the smallest debris, like sand, which is typical in hot tubs.
- Long running time of 1 hour
- Durable and should last at least a couple of years
- Doesn’t have a swivel head
- The telescoping pole is short so you may have to get in the spa to clean it to avoid bending over
Frequently Asked Questions
Do battery-powered vacuums work?
Battery-powered vacuums work extremely well as long as you have the right one for your pool’s specific needs.
What debris can a battery-powered vacuum pick up?
Battery-powered vacuums can pick up leaves, twigs, sediment, and sometimes the dog’s tennis ball, depending on the vacuum. Vacuums designed for larger debris will state their use in the product write-up.
Are battery-powered vacuums good for small pools?
Portable battery-powered vacuums are great for small pools. In fact, they are the preferred choice of many pool owners because they are durable, efficient, and less expensive than automatic cleaners.
Are battery-powered vacuums good for large pools?
Certain heavier-duty rechargeable vacuums are good for large pools. Look for one that has a longer battery life and a heavier filtration system.
How much do battery-powered vacuums cost?
Residential swimming pool battery-powered vacuums run anywhere from $50 to $250, depending on the size, filtration system, and other features. Commercial pool cleaners range between $550-$1,500.
Final Thoughts On Battery-Powered Vacuums
Battery-powered vacuums are a great choice for your pool. They are reliable, affordable, and do as good a job at cleaning as an automatic, if not better.
Before you purchase one, however, you should consider your pool’s individual needs. The size and shape of your pool, the kind of debris it has, and the length of time you devote to cleaning it are all factors to consider when looking for a vacuum.
Weekly maintenance on your pool goes a long way in keeping your pool well-balanced. If you want a no-nonsense, efficient cleaner, a battery-operated vacuum is the way to go.