Hayward PHS21CST Aquanaut 200 Review

Hayward PHS21CST Aquanaut 200 Suction Pool Cleaner


Aquanaut 200 is one of the best suction pool cleaners today. Known for its features, it will definitely satisfy your pool maintenance needs. This cleaner has a durable design that guarantees a completely clean pool. Plus, if you’re a first-timer, you won’t have any trouble with the installation process—it’s easy to set-up. Just follow the steps I’ve mentioned below.

  1. Remove large pieces of debris, clean your pump baskets and filters, correct chemical imbalances, and point all the return fittings downward.
  2. Connect the hose sections to the leader hose.
  3. Connect the leader hose to the head of the pool cleaner then add the hose floats at around 20-25 inches from the cleaner head.
  4. Add the adjustable regulator valve and the hose cone adapter or vacuum lock.
  5. Submerge the Aquanaut and its hoses into your pool and make sure that all the air is pushed out of the hoses. You can remove the air by rotating the unit.
  6. Make sure the pool pump is turned off, then hook up the hose or regulator valve to the skimmer or vacuum lock in the dedicated suction line.
  7. Adjust the wheel RPM, the bypass valve, and the suction flow.
  8. Let it do its job.

I urge you to continue reading to know Aquanaut’s specifications, features, pros, cons, and customers’ reviews.


Item Dimension 11 x 9 x 8.5 inches
Cycle time 3 hours
Cable length 33 ft.
Pool Size Up to 20’ x 40’ or pools with deep ends
Item Weight 16 lbs.
Pool Surface Concrete, Gunite, Vinyl, Fiberglass, Tile, Pebble
Drive Sequence Turn every 11’ to 14’
Min Pump Size 1/2 hp or 35 gpm
Manufacturer Hayward
Item Model Number PHS21CST
Warranty 2 years
Customer Reviews (Amazon) 4.2 out of 5 stars


The Aquanaut highlights a patented self-adjusting variable vanes of Aquanaut’s V-Flex technology that provides maximum power at almost any flow and handles any type of debris without getting clogged. It also has multiple pre-programmed steering sequences that guarantee clean surfaces and walls. Another great thing about this pool cleaner is its ability to navigate any surface expertly thanks to the patented tire treads that provide superior climbing power. It can also pass over obstacles like the typical main drain. Apart from those, the roller skirt ensures the Aquanaut never loses suction on uneven surfaces or when meeting obstacles. Lastly, Aquanaut features their three easily interchangeable throats that improve suction performance at lower flow.

Why Should You Buy The Aquanaut 200?

The Aquanaut 200 requires simple maintenance. You will also have a peace of mind knowing that AquaNaut’s durable design is backed by Hayward’s network of reliable service centers. Hayward continues to amaze and aid  us with their smart pool products for more than 80 years now. Aside from that, the company has a great customer service. With the features I mentioned, coupled with its beautifully-crafted design, who can resist this in-ground pool cleaner? It’s even cheap for its exceptional performance. Your $450 will be worth it. I assure you.

View Customer Reviews for this Product on Amazon


  • Made in the U.S.A.
  • Its durable internal gears don’t wear out.
  • Has programmed steering that ensures the cleaner will spend an ample amount of time in the shallow end
  • Has a power-adjusting turbine that maximises the suction from your pump
  • Has advanced tire tread design that enables it to overcome obstacles with ease
  • It climbs up walls.
  • It has a wide vacuum path with significant ground clearance.
  • No tweaking required—it’s easy to set-up
  • Pressure hoses snap together with the patented hose swivel for quick installation
  • Has 2 years warranty
  • Ideal for pools with smaller dirt and debris
  • Can be used for speed pumps
  • Easy to use and set up
  • Requires low maintenance
  • Allows you to save energy
  • It has soft rubber tire treads that won’t damage your vinyl liner.
  • It won’t get stuck on steps or stay in corners.
  • The tire treads have a raised section, or a hump, which helps Aquanaut pass over the main drain without getting stuck.


  • From time to time, a large piece of debris may cause the turbine vanes to stop turning, so you have to manually remove the obstruction.
  • It has no filter bag on its own—the dirt goes directly to your pool’s filter system.
  • Tire treads will wear off quickly if you have a rough pool surface.

What Are Customers Saying About It?

The Good:

  • The parts are super long lasting and I can almost bet that you will get at least 5 years before needing to change any parts, except the rubber tires that wear out every 18 months or so.
  • Customers praised its easy setup that was pretty straightforward and only took about 10 minutes.
  • A customer even said it’s a well-built vacuum that does not get caught up on drains like other vacuums.
  • One overjoyed customer even remarked, “The Aquanaut 400 has exceeded my expectations. It has performed perfectly and my pool stays exceptionally clean, even my pool serviceman is impressed!”
  • They are also satisfied with its easy-to-use feature.
  • It climbs a little of the wall so edges are cleaner.
  • Customers also mentioned that it’s very quiet.

The Bad:

  • The floats for the suction hose do not stay on, they fit poorly and do no completely circle the hose.
  • One of the hose sections split at the connection point and it’s useless, it allows air to be sucked into the hose.
  • The hose that connects to the cleaner may partially collapse in two pieces.
  • It won’t stay upright and bounces around the bottom of the pool after one month.


Obviously, there are more pros than cons and the features of this product are way too amazing to ignore. With regards to its ability to climb walls, though, you have to take note of the following: a) it needs enough suction power to allow it to climb your pool’s walls, b) if it doesn’t climb the pool wall, then check the position of your hose floats and c) it can’t climb walls of every swimming pool. Also, too much suction won’t be good because it will cause the Aquanaut to move out from your pool. The Aquanaut has a number of cons and negative reviews but at the end of the day, it’s still one powerful and durable pool cleaner.