Gone are the days of pool cleaners resembling what could only be described as a waterproof shop vac, and more or less performed as well, replaced instead with a new fleet of sleek cleaning robots. The Dolphin Sigma enters the market as the most recent iteration of Dolphin pool cleaners.
“Do I need to shell out for an automated pool filter?” “Does this new robotic pool cleaning specialist warrant a new release?” “Is the Dolphin Sigma robotic pool cleaner the best pool cleaner on the market?” We will go over these questions and more in our Dolphin Sigma Review.
Dolphin Sigma Review
Everybody wants crystal blue water in their home pools, but pools can get messy. And when a quality pool gets messy, it can be pretty evident and impossible to hide.
There is only so much that your pool’s built-in filter can remove all the elements of nature working against it. A robot pool cleaner is ideal for covering everything else, and Dolphin’s Sigma sets out to do all of that and more.
The Dolphin Sigma is the latest in a well-trusted line of automated pool cleaners by the company. This little robot builds upon the technology of past iterations and pushes itself to its absolute limit.
Not only is the technology of the Dolphin Sigma there, but it works great as well. From the built-in dual filtration to the incredible bristle system, every aspect of this robotic pool cleaner was designed to clean at the highest possible levels.
They really work too, providing a reliable and easy method of maintaining the cleanliness of your pool. We saw not only was our test pool consistently kept clean, but our pool water looked cleaner than it ever has before.
With an enormous range of smart features to bolster these solid cleaning capabilities, the Dolphin Sigma sets itself apart from the rest of the pack. Packing a nearly all-encompassing list of features, Dolphin tries hard to make this newest robot offering the best pool cleaner on the market.
How do all the features of the Dolphin Sigma add to the pool cleaning experience? And does it warrant the relatively high entry cost? Let’s take a deeper dive and find out.
Bristles and Scrubbing
Right off the bat, we noticed the Dolphin Sigma’s pretty unique rubber bristle system. They are designed to perform the double duty of both scrubbing and traversing your pool. We found that it served both of these functions wonderfully, keeping the robot efficiently on its pool cleaning journey.
The Dolphin Sigma’s bristle set picked up all forms of algae from the pool floor and siding, even up to the edge line of the pool. The clarity this robot adds to your water is very noticeable and what we formerly thought was a teal color pool was indeed bright baby blue.
The bristles are also fully capable of scaling any pool lining material, even grotto-like rock designs. While the rubber bristles of the Dolphin Sigma act as little feet to cling onto the pool wall, a jet on the topside of the robot keeps it anchored, providing for the next level of traversal.
When we refer to the Dolphin Sigma as a robot, we are quite literal here. While it won’t calculate your tax return for you or make breakfast, the Dolphin Sigma does come fully loaded with many smart features. These features combine in a truly impressive and autonomous way to take care of your pool and its water thoroughly.
Dolphin Sigma Smart Features Include:
- Pool Scanning Ability
- Bluetooth Connectivity
- Gyroscopic Navigation system
- Scheduling Function
Individually these features are impressive enough; 10 years ago, they could have cornered the market on the pool scanning ability alone, but when they are all combined into one little robot, the Dolphin Sigma makes them work wonders.
The Dolphin Sigma scans your pool water for any impurities or foreign objects and processes it so that it can attack them all as efficiently as possible.
The Bluetooth connectivity comes in the form of a remote control app so that you can set up a weekly scheduler to clean your pool and communicate with the device out of the water while your personal robot works in the pool. Something worth pointing out is that this feature highlights a minor downside to this nifty robot is that the Dolphin Sigma lacks a physical remote.
The scheduling function works wonders in automating the Dolphin Sigma so that you can let this little robot worry about when it’s time to clean the pool. There are various options here, letting you monitor how often and for how long it cleans the pool.
We found the way that the Dolphin Sigma moves through the pool water to be quite spectacular. A built-in gyroscope leads the charge here. This piece of tech ensures that the robot is always facing the right direction, primarily poolside down.
Combine this feature with the jet on top of the Dolphin Sigma that propels pool water to correct positioning and continue its momentum, and you have a genuinely mobile pool cleaning robot here.
It’s also worth noting again just how effective the balancing and pool traversal of the Dolphin Sigma is. This little robot can scale the smoothest or roughest surfaces, making short work out of even the most challenging pool linings.
Sporting a dc triple motor power is not something the Dolphin Sigma is missing either. Rotating between these triple motors ensures that this robot is not only getting all the energy it needs to zoom around your pool but is receiving and using it as efficiently as possible as well.
We noticed that there was not much of a lull in the robot’s performance as it raced through the water, cleaning the pool. Not once did the Dolphin Sigma struggle to reach any area of the pool or make its way from one end to the other. We found that the power also helped the filter get through the pool water faster as well.
The anti-tangling swivel cable also aids this as well. As a result, the Dolphin Sigma is free to race around the pool without fear of a chord twisting up and stopping the robot in its tracks.
We all know the joys of emptying a pool filter and finding an assortment of fun unidentifiable items in there. The thing is, these filters are catching nowhere near the amount of fine debris that is lurking around in your pool water.
The Dolphin Sigma uses a quality dual fine filter system to tackle this problem. One of these filters the pool water for any large debris of nature that have found their way into the pool from surrounding trees and animals. The other performs the equally important task of filtering out the things that you might not see in the pool water at first glance.
This higher quality filter of this robot can filter water up to a size of 2 microns. The clarity that this provides to the pool water is one that was immediately noticed. Not only was the pool cleaner after using the Dolphin Sigma, but the water quality went up as well.
Outstanding performance is all well and good, but it means very little when your expensive robot cleaner bites the dust after one pool season of use. Luckily the Dolphin Sigma does not seem to have this problem.
We found the build quality of the Dolphin Sigma to be quite worthy of its considerable price range. a radical departure from standard cleaners, It held up through all sorts of inclement weather and pool lining materials and continues to perform long after the purchase date.
Any of the parts of the robot that move are durable and even still easy to maintain or replace if need be. This is mainly from the continuous rubber tracks of the Dolphin Sigma, which remain durable even on rougher pool surfaces. Likewise, the removable filters, while replaceable, manage to stand the test of time as well.
The Dolphin Sigma robotic cleaner also manages to provide a clean pool using less energy by conserving energy while providing maximum output. The advantage for you? You get all the advantages of the powerful motor and powerful suction with dual scrubbing brushes while using less power. Dolphin Sigma gyroscopic systems provide a more energy efficient experience than the standard pressure side and suction side cleaners. Thus allowing the 3000 RPM DC motors to focus on cleaning and less on mobility.
Below is a video of the Dolphin Sigma in action and how easy it is to use.
Dolphin Sigma Pros and Cons
Do I Really Need an Automated Pool Cleaner?
We know what you’re thinking; “I want to keep my pool clean but do I really have to stretch for a pool cleaner, and even more so for a robotic one?”
The bottom line is going to be yes, and here’s why. A pool by itself is a massive financial endeavor. Whether you paid to have the pool installed yourself or you paid for a house with an existing pool installed already, you indeed paid for it.
The first line of reasoning would be that, with any pool ownership experience, you would want to keep this investment clean and functioning. Besides treating a pool with chlorine or monitoring a saltwater system, cleaning is going to be your most considerable upkeep fee.
With this averaging out to be $75-150 a month, those costs can compound quickly and even more quickly if the pool needs aren’t attended to regularly. Next, you can add how much time you spend on pool maintenance, and you can see the benefits of reducing that.
Nobody likes picking acorns and pollen out of their nice pool with a skimmer for three hours before a bbq, and the built-in filter can only do so much work. So why not let a little pool cleaning robot handle this instead?
With so many incredible advances occurring in the past couple of decades in the pool-cleaning space, there is a lot to these nifty little pool robots. They not only act as a way to clean and filter the significant body of water occupying your pool, but they also now do a great job of keeping the pool walls free of algae as well.
When you consider all of the monetary savings and the removed frustration of pool maintenance, there are plenty of reasons to spring for the higher quality model, maybe even the Dolphin Sigma, when it comes to pool cleaning robots.
Difference between an In-Ground vs. Above Ground Pool Cleaners
While there is a great deal of difference between an in-ground pool and an above-ground pool, from upkeep costs, material for the lining of the pools, etc., the main difference when deciding which pool cleaner to go with is the depth of the water.
In-ground pools tend to be much deeper than their above-ground cousins, and this means that they need a pool cleaner designed for that level of pressure from the water. The leading options in this market tend to be the robot pool cleaners such as the Dolphin Sigma that we have gone over above.
If you are going to put in the technology to handle these pool depths, then you might as well expand upon them into a fully realized product.
However, the above-ground pool alternatives tend to be more straightforward products and resemble a pool vacuum more than a robot. Above-ground pools also tend to lack a built-in filter, so the cleaner takes on that role as well.
These robots are not as good of a fit with above-ground pools because, at least as is the case of the Dolphin Sigma, the power proves to be a little too much and could damage the less durable pool lining.
Dolphin Sigma FAQ
What Size Pool Does the Dolphin Sigma Work For?
The Dolphin Sigma works in pools of up to 50 ft.
What is the Dolphin Sigma’s power cable length?
Roughly 56 ft
What Type of Pool Surface is the Dolphin Sigma Compatible With?
The Dolphin Sigma is compatible with all in-ground pool surfaces.
What is the Build Quality of the Dolphin Sigma Like?
The Dolphin Sigma has a very sturdy, quality build. It definitely feels like the top-of-the-line pool cleaning robot that is advertised.
Can the Dolphin Sigma be Used on Above-Ground Pools?
Designed as an In-ground pool cleaner, Dolphin recommends that the Dolphin Sigma is only used for in-ground swimming pools.
Do I Have to Change the Filters?
You do not. The Dolphin Sigmas pool filters are reusable and should last quite a decent amount of time. It is recommended that they regularly be cleaned, however.
Dolphin Sigma Alternatives
While we feel the dolphin Sigma is one of the best robotic pool cleaners on the market, our review wouldn’t be complete without looking at other alternatives that might fit best for your needs.
The Dolphin Premier robotic pool cleaner comes in a close second to the Dolphin Sigma.
Dolphin’s premier robotic cleaners are designed with a patented scrubbing system that scrubs your pool walls and floor for spotless results. The Dolphin Premier also has an in-ground cord, making it easy to plug in without worrying about getting wet! With Dolphin’s Premier robot pool cleaner, you can spend more time swimming and less time cleaning.
The features are comparable to the Sigma as they include: Tile Line scrubbing, Smart Navigation and a tangle free swivel. Dolphin’s Premier also offers a DolphinNXT filter system, which reduces the need for pool chemicals.
This robot helps you keep your pool spotless and healthy by removing debris that causes water clarity issues (like leaves) as well as reducing potentially harmful bacteria from forming in stagnant areas through its scrubbing brush action. A Dolphin Premier can clean an entire 24 ft x 36 ft surface area in under two hours–much faster than traditional pump-driven cleaners!
With over 1200 reviews of 4.5 stars (at the time of this writing) this is a popular Amazon Choice
The Polaris F9550 Sport Robotic In-Ground Pool Cleaner is a new Polaris pool cleaner model. It is designed to clean the floor, walls and waterline of your in ground swimming pool with its three different types of brushes:
- Turbine Brush for cleaning floors
- Wheel Brushes
- Scouring Pad for scratching up stubborn stains on the bottom or sides
The Polaris F9550 Sport Robotic In Ground Pool Cleaner is built tough enough to handle any harsh winter conditions while still being able to find all those hard to reach corners that other cleaners can’t get too. Polaris even includes an exclusive chemical dispensing system so you don’t have to worry about adding chemicals when it’s due! Polaris also has one more great feature
Dolphin Nautilus CC Plus
An Amazon favorite due to its performance and cost, the Dolphin Nautilus CC Plus Robotic pool cleaner is an advanced, powerful cleaner that can clean your pool in just a few hours. Dolphin Nautilus CC Plus has all the features of Dolphin’s top-selling Dolphin Nautilus products with some new and improved technologies to make it even better for you.
The Dolphin Nautilus CC Plus Robotic Pool Cleaner is easy to use – simply plug into any wall outlet near your pool, set on skimmer or suction side, select desired cleaning cycle from manual control panel or remote controller. The Dolphin Nautilus CC Plus will automatically sense when debris accumulates and pause until more power is needed before resuming back again.
If you are looking to keep costs down, Amazon has some great deals on this product.
Wrapping it Up
Our overall verdict of the Dolphin Sigma Pool Cleaners is quite favorable. If you are in the market for a higher-end solution to your messy pool problems, then this little robot would be the one for you. It truly does set itself up as the top of the line in the pool cleaning robot industry.
While the purchasing price is on the steep side, we think that the pool cleaning costs and the weight off our shoulders that the Dolphin Sigma takes care of more than justifies buying in. After all, it is a small price to pay for a cleaning robot compared to the price already invested into the pool and the prices one could pay if said pool is not taken care of appropriately.
Still, even at its current price point, we find the new Dolphin Sigma especially worthy of an addition to your existing pool setup, especially ahead of what will certainly be a particularly hectic pool season.
If you ever had any preconceived notions with robotic pool cleaners, those will all disappear when you purchase you new Sigma. This is by far the best Dolphin pool robot we’ve come across. If you’re looking for a swimming pool cleaner without the hassle of constant maintenance, the Dolphin Sigma should definitely be a consideration.
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