The Hayward W3900 Wanda the Whale pool cleaner gets ten out of ten for cuteness, but sadly I can’t say the same for performance. This suction line automatic vacuum attaches to your skimmer and runs through the filter with debris and dirt going back into the filtration system – so your suction power will be dependent on the kind of pump you own.
Clean time: Approx. two hours
Cable length: 32 ft. hose
Suction rate: Dependent on pool pump
Pool size: Above ground
Smart features: No
The robotic cleaner does an OK job and is good for light cleaning of small above ground pools, and it’s cheap so if you’re a first time pool owner like me, it doesn’t feel like an outrageous price to pay upfront.
The turbine system helps Wanda move quietly around the pool, and it has a very cute whale design with a cartoon face, so my kids were happy to watch it get to work. It’s very basic and that is reflected in the low price. It also doesn’t climb walls, steps or clean the waterline so if you want something with more high tech features this isn’t the product for you. But for a cheap and cheerful cleaner it does the job as expected and could be considered one of the best pool vacuums or the best pool cleaners.
In this review I’ll take a deeper dive into Wanda the Whale’s specs, pros and cons and look at some user reviews, too.
Hayward W3900 Wanda the Whale Pool Cleaner: Design
The W3900 Wanda the Whale pool cleaner by Hayward comes in white and blue and looks like a cartoon whale, so is naturally a big hit with my kids. It has a basic design and operates off the pool's existing filtration system with its 32” hose. It’s easy to set up and use but the suction power is slightly underwhelming
It comes with a bumper ring to reduce friction and guiding the machine away from walls, steps and ladders for a more efficient clean.
Hayward W3900 Wanda the Whale Pool Cleaner: Features
Hayward’s Wanda the Whale is a suction cleaner designed to automatically clean the bottom of all sizes and shapes of above ground and on ground pools. It uses a turbine system to move around the bottom of your pool and features a bumper ring to guide it away from walls, steps and ladders.
It’s a fairly basic unit, which I expected for the price, but the kids love the design and it does a decent job of light cleaning. It has what Hayward calls SmartDrive technology to help it navigate the pool and comes with a 32 ft. hose that you connect directly to your skimmer.
· 32 ft. hose
· bumper ring
· turbine system
· SmartDrive technology
· 1-year warranty
Hayward W3900 Wanda the Whale Pool Cleaner: Price and availability
The Hayward Wanda the Whale pool cleaner retails at $199 / £160 and is available from Hayward, Walmart and Amazon.
It’s a basic and inexpensive product ideal for people who don’t want to spend a lot on pool maintenance.
Hayward W3900 Wanda the Whale Pool Cleaner: User reviews
This cute pool cleaner gets 4 out of 5 stars on Amazon with 58% giving it the full five stars. Fans of the unit said the suction was good and it offered value for money. One reviewer said it was an affordable choice for first time pool owners, while another said: “My kids like watching her clean and she makes me happy! 5 stars! I’ve already recommended her to five of my friends with above ground pools.”
But several negative reviews reported that the tail doesn’t snap on securely and would often fall off – however it is purely cosmetic so not essential for the unit to work. One reviewer said the unit was only good for light cleaning as there was still a lot of debris left on the bottom of the pool after a clean. Another reviewer said they had to buy additional items (skimmer, extra pump, leaf canister) for the cleaner to work properly.
Hayward W3900 Wanda the Whale Pool Cleaner: Expert reviews
The Wanda the Whale pool cleaner is ideal for light cleaning of small above ground pools, says Hugo Guerrero, a certified House Cleaning Technician (HCT) from New York. “It’s easy to assemble and has fairly good suction but its tail is hard to hook up and falls off, which could be annoying for some people.”
Should you buy the Hayward W3900 Wanda the Whale Pool Cleaner?
If you’re a first time pool owner you can’t go wrong with Wanda the Whale. Not only is it a really cute design, the robotic vacuum offers a light clean for small above ground pools.
If you need something more powerful, or have a larger pool with steps and walls that need regular cleaning you might prefer to choose something like the Polaris 9650iQ Sport or the Dolphin Nautilus CC Plus, but expect to spend a lot more on these high tech units. If you just need a basic cleaner that looks good and your kids will love, Wanda the Whale is a decent option.
How does the Hayward W3900 Wanda the Whale Pool Cleaner compare?
For a similar priced product, consider the Hydrus Roker Plus ($274) that has powerful suction, and is easy to use for anyone with a small pool.
The Moolan cordless robotic pool cleaner ($279.99) is designed for above ground pools. It’s lightweight and uses an advanced navigation system to auto-reverse when it touches a wall.
If you have a bit more to spend, the Zodiac G3 ($324) offers an efficient clean and uses a diaphragm system and large fin disc to suck up dirt and debris. And it’s only got one moving part so is cheap to maintain and/or repair.