Aquabot Rapids 4WD Review – Robotic Pool Cleaner

The rapids 4WD is a new spin on the classic Breeze 4WD. It improves on it across the board, with increased power, more versatile brushes, full 90 degree pool climbing, the works. It is also one of the better looking devices offered by Aquabot, not a big deal but still something ton consider. This is an in ground pool cleaner first and foremost, so bear that in mind when considering a purchase. So what are the details I hear you ask? Let’s dive right i and see if the Rapids 4WD is the right robotic pool cleaner for you.

Aquabot Rapids 4WD Design and Build Quality

Rapids 4WD filterbagAquabot have worked hard to gain their reputation of excellence, and while a few of their products are a little confusing, in terms of who they are aimed at, this assessment holds true across the board. The Breeze series, and by extension the Rapids series, is on of their best design products, not only in terms of look but also in terms of function and features. The vanilla Rapids might have a slight advantage in terms of aesthetic, no denying that, but the feature list of the 4WD is a little longer than its less expensive counterpart. I love a top loading filter bag, and here proves that not only is it the better option i terms of efficiency, but it also makes the robotic pool cleaner on average 30% cooler.

The look of the bot is usually of no import, but in the case of the Rapids series the look of the device informs a few features, most important of which is the top loading filter bag. It is proof at least that my penchant for talking about how a robotic pool cleaner looks does at least have some merit.

Aquabot Rapids 4WD Features and Specs

An upgrade on the Rapids XLS simply by virtue of the 90 degree wall transition. The added power of 4 wheel drive in this little beast gives it the power boost it needed to climb perpendicular walls. I consider this feature to be of paramount importance, and find it hard to recommend no wall cleaning bots as a result. The 4WD does everything else the XLS does. The core cleaning tech is the same, but the advance power washing feature is absent here. As is the stationary brush, instead we have an in between option, of an active brush. I prefer the compound problem solving behind the XLS’ design, but this is a nice compromise.


Somehow they were able to pack in a more powerful motor at no additional cost to weight. we are looking at a 20″x 21″x 17″ machine weighing again at around 20 pounds. One advantage this has over the XLS is the handle, a god send when lifting it out of the pool, but not a major one considering how light this build is.

overall I was impressed. It does all the XLS can do but better, as a result it is more expensive, but if you had the money I would advise you go for this one.

Aquabot Rapids 4WD Ease of Use

There are two kinds of robotic pool cleaners. Those that are plug and play and those that require setting up with an external pump. I review the former kind, as I find the letter to have too steep a learning curve. not to mention the ease of use section would then become the longest part of the review. The Rapids 4WD is a lot like the XLS, plug and pay and simple. But i comes with a handle, making it even easier to remove from the water. Add in the top loading filter bag, which limits the overflow debris that may fall back into the water, and we have one of the best options on the market at the moment in terms of ease of use.

Overall an impressive build that keeps becoming more impressive. I love the handle, the top loading filter and the overall weight.

Aquabot Rapids 4WD Pricing

Rapids 4WD in waterAll those improvements cost money honey. The Rapids XLS is not a cheap machine, and the 4WD is more expensive still. the price varies between $700-$900. I would argue that it is well worth the price, and my usual spiel regarding the value of saved time applies here in full. A robotic pool cleaner that will clean the entirety of your pol, floor, wall top to bottom, will save you so much time that over the3 course of a year you will have gotten your money’s worth ten times over.

The other pricing factor to understand is the cost to run the device. For this you need to know the price per kilowatt hour in your area, as it does vary. the 4WD’ power consumption is quite low though, 180W, and in most places you should expect to pay a little over 10 cents per cycle. that might not sound like much, but over the long term it does add up. How to the fun part, the warranty. I don’t know when reading warranty information became a fun time activity for me, but c’est la vie. Like the XLS the Rapids 4WD comes with a full 2 years of coverage, unlike other more expensive products that are only fully covered for a year, then covered with a limited warranty for a few years after. I have read both warranties and believe me when I say a year of full coverage is worth a lot more than even 3 years of limited coverage.

Overall this might be my favorite robotic pool cleaner on the market. It does the lot, at a very reasonable price point, and comes with one of the better warranties.

Aquabot Rapids 4WD Conclusion

There is an awful lot to recommend here. For once it really is easier to say who I don’t want buying this product. Anyone with an above ground pool. That is it. for everyone else this is the one. It cleans everything, it comes with a few deep cleaning options and it is cheap. there is pretty much nothing wrong with this build.

Pros:

  • Automatic, requires no supervision.
  • Top loading filter bag is much less messy
  • Short 2-3 hour cycle
  • Very light, makes removing it from a pool easier.
  • Brush and power washing feature are top notch
  • Aesthetically brilliant
  • Cleans walls and floors.

Cons:

  • It might be a tad expensive?
  • In ground pool only


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