The proper choice of equipment for pool maintenance is not easy when the market is full of different types of pool cleaners – manual, automatic, and robotic. If you want to have a completely autonomous, independent cleaning cycle, then a robotic cleaner is a good choice.
Comparing two affordable models, Hayward Sharkvac vs Sharkvac XL, from one of the most trustable manufacturers, you will see not only their advantages and differences but also how to choose the proper pool cleaner based on the parameters and needs of your swimming pool.
These models are best-sellers, most efficient in terms of suction power, user-friendly, have simple control functions, and work independently from the pool filtration system. The most exciting feature of all automatic and robotic cleaners is that they save time and money; see below how this could happen.
Hayward Sharkvac vs Sharkvac XL – Comparison table
Last update on 2023-02-27 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
Main Differences Between the Model
Hayward Company produces SharkVac Series and has more than 80 years of experience producing equipment for commercial and residential pools. Hayward produces more than 12 series of pool cleaners – automatic (pressure side and suction) and robotic. The SharkVac series is presented with eight models of robotic cleaners with different cleaning cycles and cleaning features. But all of them are designed for all surfaces and shapes of inground pools. The main differences between these particular models Hayward Sharkvac vs Sharkvac XL, are the following:
- SharkVac XL can clean not only the floor and partly walls as SharkVac, but the full height of walls and waterline.
- The cleaning cycle for SharkVac XL is correspondingly longer – 3 hours.
- SharkVac has a cable length of 50 ft. while SharkVac XL – 60 ft.
- A caddy cart is included in the standard package of SharkVac XL.
- The warranty of SharkVac XL is one year longer – 2 years.
SharkVac Series has expert line cleaners (without W3 in the model’s name) that cost significantly more expensive than standard residential cleaners; this line is designed for professional cleaners. However, the two described models are enough to clean one standard swimming pool in automatic mode and represent the main types of SharkVac Series for residential pools.
Detailed Product Reviews
SharkVac is a pool cleaner from Hayward SharkVac Series designed based on advanced technologies and high-quality components for maximum cleaning performance without any hoses or additional extra pumps. The cleaner is not connected to the pool filtration system and reduces the number of backwashing cycles, saving owners time and money. In addition, it can perform powerful scrubbing, vacuuming of the swimming pool surfaces, and water filtration (7 gallons per minute), reducing the load on a filtration system.
The Hayward SharkVac has four wheels; between two wheels, there is a rubber wheel brush to scrub the floor and prevent algae formation. The filter bucket with two fine filters has top access near the handle. The sealed motor unit and the filter bucket are located under the dome assy. The dome cover has a glass window to see if the filter is empty or not. There are three inlets at the bottom of the filter bucket, the one is near the brush roller and is designed for large debris and leaves.
The installation process is not complicated; there are only some steps of a pool and cleaner preparation for effective work.
- Remove the SharkVac from the box.
- Connect the cleaner to the power. The power control unit is a separate plastic device with a power on/off button, a cable inlet for the connection to the power grid, and an inlet to connect the floating cable with this unit. The power supply grid (with mandatory GFCI) should be at least 11.5 feet (3.5 m) from the pool edge; it is achievable as the cable length is 50 feet. The unique cable (from the package) has floaters to prevent tangling.
- Put the cleaner into the water. Please do not start the cleaner when it is not in the water. The water temperature should be in the range of 50 F-95 F.
- During the first start-up and the following ones, let a robotic cleaner make a map of a pool for the first ten minutes for proper cleaning.
- During the first time, all large objects should be removed from the pool.
- Do not allow people to swim in the pool during a robotic cleaner’s work. Meanwhile, the cleaner has electronic self-diagnostics and overload.
After two hours of cleaning, the power will automatically turn off. Pull the cleaner to the pool edge with a cable but remove from the water the cleaner with the blue ergonomic handle. To access the filter, you need to press the lid black button to lift the dome cover. After each robotic cleaner cycle, two filter cartridges can stay in the frame and be cleaned with a garden hose. From time to time, do not forget to clean the moving parts and all inlets with fresh water. The cleaner should be stored in a dry, shaded place. It is recommended periodically to stretch the cable cord to prevent coiling.
Be informed that the cleaner is not designed for the first cleaning of a swimming pool after its installation. But it is a helpful device in regular pool maintenance and saves a lot of manual efforts.
- Can clean a floor, steps and partly walls
- Two fine filters to collect debris up to 5 microns, and two small blue primary filters
- Operates separately from the filtration system
- Have a separate filter bucket
- Save money as can be a filter pump during the cleaning cycle
- User-friendly with simple installation
- 2 hours cleaning cycle
- It can be used in all types and shapes of inground pools
- Cannot clean a waterline and total height of walls
- Can get stuck at the main drain
- Cable can tangle
- The lid push button, after a year of usage, is not so easy to open
Hayward SharkVac XL
Hayward SharkVac XL is an upgraded version of the SharkVac model with more extended features and a caddy cart in the package. They look almost the same, but the XL version has a smaller lid window and a smaller handle. As for SharkVac, this SharkVac XL requires only the energy of one standard light bulb for effective scrubbing and pool vacuuming. It also works in fully automatic mode after you put it in the water and turn on the button on the power control station that is connected to the power grid.
The overall sequence for the start-up of the cleaner is the same as for SharkVac described earlier. No more hoses and pumps are required for its work. The cleaner is compatible with all shapes and pool surfaces, its soft rubber tires and brush clean walls, floor, steps, and a waterline. During each cleaning cycle, it also filters pool water so the filtration system can be turned off. The design allows having up to 94% money savings compared to automatic pressure cleaners.
The filtration system consists of the same size bucket, two fine filters, and two small spring blue filter elements. The filtration system has top access with a push button on the dome lid. To clean the filter, you do not need to turn it upside down like many other cleaners. Instead, just remove the filter bucket and clean it with a garden hose; if you wish, you can take out filter cartridges and clean them separately, but this is not mandatory.
The rubber brush rolls from a 24 V DC motor (direct drive), ensuring the most potent scrubbing in the class with suction power at 2700 rpm. With a longer power cord – 60 ft. – you can reach all corners of 20-by-40-feet swimming pools. Despite the Adaptive Seek Control Logic Microprocessor for smart navigation, the cleaner is equipped with two sensors – out-of-water and beach-entry- preventing from leaving the swimming pool during waterline cleaning. It also has a longer standard cycle (1 hour more than SharkVac) for pools with a high level of debris, including fine particles and algae. The longer cycle is also connected to the fact that the overall cleaning cycle for XL is more extensive – full height of walls and waterline.
SharkVac XL and its power supply are pre-mounted on the caddy cart during transportation. A caddy cart simplifies the storage and transportation of the cleaner. The caddy is partly assembled during transportation. For final assembling, you need to insert the tube into the particular port on the base with screws and nuts and attach it to the other end of the handle.
Unfortunately, the whole SharkVac Series does not have a remote control, a timer, or a smartphone application; the control is executed with the power control unit’s turn on/off button. The XL model shutdowns automatically after three hours of manually working; you can shut down one with a power control unit at any time. Nevertheless, the average working time of any Hayward SharkVac or SharkVac is at least 4-5 years.
- Can clean walls, waterline, and floor
- A caddy cart is included in the package for storage and transportation
- Working a filtration system during a cleaning cycle
- Long cable 60 ft.
- Fine filters to collect up to 5 microns of debris and particles
- No installation, simple maintenance
- It saves energy and money
- Works for all types and shapes of the swimming pool
- The standard cleaning cycle is 3 hours
- The cable does not have a swivel device and can tangle
- No remote control
- The cleaner should be cleaned and extracted from the water after each cleaning cycle
- More expensive than a standard SharkVac model
Because of their autonomous work, all pool owners consider robotic cleaners the most high-tech models for swimming pool cleaners. But it is interesting what advantages and disadvantages robotic cleaners have.
- It has a separate motor that requires maintenance from time to time.
- Not all robotic cleaners can clean walls, a floor, steps, and a waterline. Some have limited functionality of a floor cleaning.
- They are more expensive than manual or automatic (pressure side and suction) cleaners.
- They must be removed from the swimming pool during chemical treatment, and, after each cleaning, a filter must be cleaned.
- The range of movement is limited by cord length. Some cables are not equipped with a swivel so that they can tangle.
So, considering such advantages, it is crucial to choose the proper robotic cleaner. Please see below a more detailed comparison of differences between Hayward Sharkvac vs Sharkvac XL mentioned in the second point.
Design and construction
Hayward Sharkvac XL
The Hayward SharkVac XL has an aerodynamic design, but the cleaner has a different lid form. The window on the lid and the blue handle on the back are smaller. Other parts – wheels, a brush roll, a button – are the same. The cleaner is also black and white, but the front bottom of Hayward SharkVac XL is black, not white as in Hayward SharkVac.
It is impossible to say which design and construction of Hayward Sharkvac vs Sharkvac XL are better. As both models have only slight differences, this does not impact the functionality.
Hayward Sharkvac XL
The SharkVac XL is a robotic cleaner that can clean and scrub a floor, coves, steps, walls, and a waterline only using electricity without the power of filtration and booster pumps. In addition, the XL model has a caddy cart for storage and transportation.
Hayward Sharkvac XL is more functional than Hayward Sharkvac. It can clean all surfaces in the swimming pool, and a helpful caddy cart is in the package for storage.
Hayward Sharkvac XL
The cable length is 60 ft.
It is evident that Hayward Sharkvac XL has a longer cable as it also cleans walls and water lines. This allows this model to access all hard-to-reach corners of the 20′ x 40′ swimming pool, but unfortunately, both floating cables can tangle as they are not equipped with a swivel.
Hayward Sharkvac XL
The Hayward Sharkvac XL has a 2 years warranty.
Even though the construction and most of the details for both cleaners are the same, Hayward Sharkvac XL is more functional and can perform more cleaning activities. That is why its construction inside is a little bit more complicated, and the warranty is one year longer. However, that is a significant plus as it is a more expensive robotic cleaner than Hayward Sharkvac.
How to choose the Best Pool Robotic Cleaner?
After summarizing all pros and cons of all robotic cleaners and, in particular, all features of Hayward SharkVac and SharkVac XL, the essential part for all potential owners is the list of main parameters to be considered during the choice of the best pool robotic cleaner.
- The most critical parameters are the type of the pool (inground or aboveground), its size, and the type of surface (pebble, concrete, etc.).
- The required functionality of a pool cleaner is another essential parameter. It is the most expensive model if you need to clean walls, floors, steps, and waterlines and collect debris from the surface. Also, choose the most potent models with direct-drive brush rolls for effective cleaning.
- The available electrical outlet near the swimming pool if the robotic cleaner works from electrical power.
- Type of filter required to collect the debris in your swimming pool. If you have a lot of leaves, you can buy a simple filter, if you have a lot of fine particles (like sand), you need to buy a filter that can collect particles with size about 5 microns and less.
- The weight and sizes of a robotic cleaner. As each robotic cleaner should be cleaned after each cleaning cycle, it should have a handle to take it out and be lightweight, especially with bottom access to the filter as you need to turn it over.
- The length of a standard cleaning cycle defines if the pool will be completely clean or not. So, the valuable parameter is to program the cleaner upon your swimming pool size. It is also a good feature if you can choose a specific program – only floor or walls.
- The remote control or smartphone application can be a good help if you travel a lot and want to come back to a clean swimming pool. But such an option for sure makes a pool cleaner more expensive.
Here are the parameters that should be considered when choosing the best pool robotic cleaner. The color and number of wheels are the secondary parameters that, in most cases, do not impact the cleaning quality.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why does Hayward Sharkvac fail to collect debris?
Should Hayward Sharkvac vs Sharkvac XL have a connection to the pool filtration system?
What is the difference in control function of Hayward Sharkvac vs Sharkvac XL?
Can SharkVac work in the above ground pool?
The choice between Hayward Sharkvac vs Sharkvac XL is easy to make on two parameters: their functionality and price. The Hayward SharkVac XL can clean all surfaces in the inground swimming pool when SharkVac is limited with a floor and partial walls. Correspondingly, the price of Hayward Sharkvac XL is higher. All main other parameters such as filters, suction power, the construction, a power control unit, and control functions are the same.
The cable length and slight difference in appearance do not impact so heavily. If you want an entire cycle of cleaning that will be extended for 1 hour, then Hayward Sharkvac XL is the best option. An extended warranty and a caddy cart for storage and transportation will be a nice bonus. If you want to save money, or your waterline does not require scrubbing, then no reasons to pay more; purchase Hayward Sharkvac.
Hi! I’m Markus Robertson, and water is my passion.
Five years ago, I graduated from the University of California-Los Angeles and was going to become a professional marine biologist. However, my fate had other plans for me, and due to family problems, I had to find a more stable and well-paid job. I had only one wish for my job to be connected with water.
During this period of my life, I worked as a sales manager at Olympic Pool & Spa Supplies. The job helped me learn everything about swimming pools and related pool equipment, as well as how to choose the best option and what to pay attention to.
Having worked there for three years, I decided to start my own blog about pools, where I can tell people about the best new pool equipment models and share my knowledge and experience.
A marine biologist by education, I became a pool blogger by trade. Now I’m glad I can help the guests of my store and the visitors of my blog know a lot of exciting things about pools, their types, best pumps and filters, necessary equipment maintenance, and so on.
I welcome all people who want to choose a proper basin and the stuff to my blog! Hope you’ll find this information interesting and useful!