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10 Best Pond Vacuum Cleaners in 2022 – Reviews & Top Picks

Lindsey Stanton Profile Picture

By Lindsey Stanton

Cleaning garden pond

While a fish pond is a beautiful addition to a yard or garden area, it is something that requires work. To get the most enjoyment from your pond, you have to keep it clean and free of debris. When it comes to outdoor debris, that stuff always seems to end up straight in your pond, along with leaves, dirt, sludge, silt, and other grunge. If you fail to clean your pond, it can block your filter and even harm the plants and fish living in the water.

If your pond is dirty and full of crud, you need a good pond vacuum cleaner and you need it pronto!  We understand that it’s not easy to choose a pond vacuum, especially if you’ve never used one before. That’s why we’ve put together these pond vacuum cleaner reviews to help you choose the right vacuum for your pond.

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A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites

Rating Image Product Details
Best Overall
Winner
OASE PondoVac Classic OASE PondoVac Classic
  • Good suction
  • Comes with many attachments
  • Compact and lightweight for easy handling
  • Best Value
    Second place
    Half Off Ponds CleanSweep 1400 Half Off Ponds CleanSweep 1400
  • Good sucking power
  • Removes stuck-on muck
  • Includes many accessories
  • Premium Choice
    Third place
    OASE PondoVac 3 OASE PondoVac 3
  • Built-in wheels
  • Adjustable handle
  • Dual chamber design for faster vacuuming
  • Matala PondVac II Matala PondVac II
  • Durable build
  • Effectively removes sludge
  • dead leaves
  • and algae
  • Includes several extension tubes and vacuum heads
  • Matala MPC-VAC Power-Cyclone Pond Vacuum Matala MPC-VAC Power-Cyclone Pond Vacuum
  • Versatile
  • Includes many accessories
  • Industrial strength vacuum
  • The 10 Best Pond Vacuum Cleaners

    1. OASE PondoVac Classic – Best Overall

    OASE PondoVac Classic

    Check Price on Chewy
    Power: 1,200 watts
    Max suction depth: 6 feet
    Suction hose length: 13 feet
    Power cord length: 13 feet

    For longer than a decade, pond owners have been putting their full trust in the PondoVac Classic. This is a tried-and-true pond vacuum cleaner that does a very good job of cleaning sludge and other debris from backyard ponds of all sizes and shapes. We’ve ranked this unit as the best overall pond vacuum cleaner because it gets good reviews online and it’s equipped with all the right features to make cleaning a pond as pleasant as possible.

    The PondoVac Classic features a compact design with a built-in handle for easy handling. This vacuum cleaner weighs just 23.5 pounds, can clean ponds that are 6 feet deep, and comes with a 13-foot-long suction hose and a power cord of the same length. This vacuum also includes a multitude of nozzle attachments to cover all applications including gravel, flat surfaces, and even string algae. Regarding sucking power, the PondoVac Classic is powered by a 1,200-watt motor, which is powerful enough to handle large debris and clumps of crud that typically collect on pond bottoms.

    One drawback to the PondoVac Classic is that it shuts off every time the canister gets full. Then it empties itself and turns back on automatically. This can be annoying as the unit only runs for a couple of minutes before emptying itself. 

    Pros
    • Compact and lightweight for easy handling
    • Good suction
    • Comes with many attachments
    Cons
    • Only runs a couple of minutes before shutting off and emptying

    2. Half Off Ponds CleanSweep 1400 – Best Value

    Half Off Ponds CleanSweep 1400

    Power: 1,400 watts
    Max suction depth: 6 feet
    Suction hose length: 13 feet
    Power cord length: N/A

    We are impressed with the Half Off Ponds CleanSweep 1400 that removes debris and even stuck-on muck from a pond in a fast, convenient, and effective manner. This is a compact unit with an easy-grip handle that’s powered by a 1,400-watt motor that works on a continuous cycle while producing a powerful vacuum effect.

    This pond vacuum has a 13-foot-long intake hose with an ergonomic built-in handle for tangle-free cleaning. The vacuum comes with three cleaning nozzles, a debris collection bag, and four intake hose extension tubes so you can get into hard-to-reach areas.

    The Clean Sweep 1400 does a great job of cleaning the gunk out of ponds but it does have a couple of issues. This unit stops running to offload water frequently so you need some patience to use it. The vacuum is also lacking wheels which makes it cumbersome to move around and transport. Otherwise, this is a very good pond vacuum that doesn’t cost a fortune and one that’s easy to use.

    Pros
    • Good sucking power
    • Removes stuck-on muck
    • Includes many accessories
    Cons
    • Stops running frequently to offload water
    • No wheels

    3. OASE PondoVac 3 – Premium Choice

    OASE PondoVac 3

    Power: 1,600 watts
    Max suction depth: 7 feet
    Suction hose length: 16 feet
    Power cord length: N/A

    We consider the PondoVac 3 by OASE the best pond vacuum cleaner for the money. This vacuum is powered by a 1,600-watt motor and it won’t turn itself off to empty, which can cut your vacuuming time in half. The reason this vacuum can operate continuously is that it features a patented dual chamber design. This vacuum is a bit on the heavy side at 30 pounds, but it does have built-in wheels as well as an adjustable handle to make moving it easier.

    The OASE PondoVac 3 pond vacuum cleaner is made of plastic and the quality is not that great. Some users report that the base plastic easily develops stress fractures around the side and wheel area. This vacuum does a great job sucking up things like bird droppings and small bits and pieces from pond bottoms but it doesn’t excel at picking up big clumps of crud and large leaves. However, this is an affordable pond vacuum cleaner that gets the job done reasonably well.  We like this unit’s two chambers that make vacuuming a pond much faster than other single chamber pond vacuums. 

    Pros
    • Dual chamber design for faster vacuuming
    • Built-in wheels
    • Adjustable handle
    • Comes with many attachments
    Cons
    • Somewhat heavy
    • Plastic base is prone to cracking

    4. Matala PondVac II

    Matala PondVac II

    Power: 1400 watts
    Max suction depth: 5 feet
    Suction hose length: 16 feet
    Power cord length: N/A

    The PondVac II by Matala is also called the “Muck Buster’. The suction power of this pond vacuum is good at removing sludge, dead leaves, and algae from the sides and bottom of a pond. This vacuum features a durable build that feels as though it will stand to the test of time. Priced similarly to other pond vacuum cleaners in its class, the PondVac II offers plenty for the money. This vacuum has a long suction hose and several extension tubes as well as four different heads. This unit also has an auto-fill and drain cycle.

    It takes the Muck Buster about 30 seconds to drain once the tank fills but it restarts quickly so there’s not a lot of time wasted waiting for these automatic processes to finish. This vacuum doesn’t work well on rocks and other uneven surfaces. We feel the company could have included a smaller brush attachment for cleaning rocks and other items on the bottom of the pond. The PondVac II is not the quickest pond vacuum we reviewed as it takes well over an hour to clean a 4,000-gallon pond.

    Pros
    • Effectively removes sludge, dead leaves, and algae
    • Includes several extension tubes and vacuum heads
    • Durable build
    Cons
    • Doesn’t work well on rocks and other uneven surfaces
    • Slower than comparable pond vacuums
    • Lacks a small brush attachment

    5. Matala MPC-VAC Power-Cyclone Pond Vacuum

    Matala MPC-VAC Power-Cyclone Pond Vacuum

    Power: 1,200 watts
    Max suction depth: 6 feet
    Suction hose length: 26 feet
    Power cord length: 8 feet

    We’ve included a second Matala vacuum on our top 10 list because this brand knows what pond owners need in a good vacuum cleaner. The MPC-VAC by Matala is an industrial-grade vacuum designed to clean out large ponds. This unit is equipped with two motors and a 1-HP sludge pump. This pond vacuum weighs over 70 pounds and costs nearly twice the amount of the top models on our list. But if you have a large pond and need some real muscle power to keep it clean, this vacuum should tick all the right boxes for you. It’s built very well and is on wheels to make movement and transport easier. This vacuum comes with several nozzle attachments, a brush attachment, a plastic extension pipe, and a few more accessories.

    This industrial-grade vacuum isn’t for every pond owner. It’s big and heavy and it’s a bit on the costly side. However, it works well at cleaning even hard-to-remove gunk and debris from ponds. This unit is designed for cleaning large ponds and can even be used for cleaning out swimming pool filter tanks and for dealing with basement floods as well as household carpet floods.

    Pros
    • Industrial strength vacuum
    • Includes many accessories
    • Built-in wheels
    • Versatile
    Cons
    • Big and heavy
    • Costly

    Related Read: How to Clean a Pond Without Draining It (8 Effective Methods)


    6. POOLWHALE Portable Vacuum Jet Underwater Cleaner

    POOLWHALE Portable Vacuum Jet Underwater Cleaner

    Power: Water pressure-powered
    Max suction depth: 4 feet
    Suction hose length: N/A
    Power cord length: No power cord needed

    Perfect for the budget-conscious pond owner, the POOLWHALE Portable Vacuum Jet Underwater Cleaner is a pond vacuum that’s powered by water pressure coming from a garden hose. The water from the hose enters the vacuum to create a suction effect to pull dirt and debris into the included nylon mesh collection bag. This vacuum is as simple as it can be as it doesn’t come with a pump or filter.

    This pond vacuum is easy to use. You simply attach the vacuum to your garden hose, turn the water on, and the force of the water pressure entering the vacuum sucks up debris, leaves, and other gunk right into the mesh net. This pond vacuum cleaner made it into our top five because it works surprisingly well, plus it’s very affordable and easy to assemble and use.

    What we didn’t like about this unit by POOLWHALE Is that the plastic it’s made of looks and feels cheap. The included two adapter pieces for the hose connection don’t always stay connected, mostly because the adapters don’t feel strong enough. Even though the mesh on the collection net is fine, it’s not fine enough to hold fine sand and silt that tends to fall right through.

    Pros
    • Highly affordable
    • Easy to assemble and set up
    • No power cords or outlets to hassle with
    • Does a good job of picking up pond debris
    Cons
    • Flimsy construction
    • Hose adapters not designed well
    • Nylon collection bag mesh isn’t fine enough to hold fine sand

    7. PoolSupplyTown Vacuum Cleaner with Brush

    PoolSupplyTown Vacuum Cleaner with Brush

    Power: Water pressure-powered
    Max suction depth: Same length as the vacuum pole you use
    Suction hose length: N/A
    Power cord length: No power cord needed

    The PoolSupplyTown Vacuum Cleaner with Brush works on water pressure power like the POOLWHALE unit we reviewed above. When you use this pond vacuum cleaner, you won’t make any noise nor will you use any electricity. This vacuum cleaner for ponds does an impressively good job of cleaning up debris from the sides and bottom of a pond.

    A big downside to this unit is that it doesn’t come with a pole. This means you’ll either have to use a pond or pool vacuum pole you may already have or create a makeshift pole yourself. This super-affordable pond vacuum is easy to use but it has a small vacuum head which means it can take a while to clean a pond, and especially a large pond.

    This no-frills pond vacuum may be perfect for you if you simply want an easy-to-use vacuum that does a good job of ridding your pond of debris, dirt, leaves, etc. Just keep in mind that the plastic construction of this vacuum isn’t the best and there are no instructions included in the packaging.

    Pros
    • Cleans remarkably well
    • Easy to set up and use
    Cons
    • Does not include a vacuum pole
    • Cheap plastic construction
    • No instructions

    8. Pool Blaster Catfish Ultra Battery-Powered Pool Vacuum

    Pool Blaster Catfish Ultra Battery-Powered Pool Vacuum

    Power: 4-volt lithium-ion battery
    Max suction depth: 75 feet
    Suction hose length: No hose needed
    Power cord length: No power cord needed

    The Catfish Ultra Battery Powered Pool Vacuum by Pool Blaster deserves a spot on our reviews of the best pond vacuum cleaners. Why? Because even though it’s called a pool cleaner, it can be used as a pond cleaner and, in fact, many people do use it for just that!

    This vacuum doesn’t come with a power cord or a suction hose because it’s a self-contained battery-operated unit that’s powered by an 8.4-volt battery. The Catfish Ultra comes with a 4-piece pole set that is 3.75 feet in length when put together. This means that this vacuum can’t be used for cleaning deep backyard ponds. It will, however, work just fine cleaning ponds that are under four feet deep.  Also included with this vacuum cleaner is a 10.5-inch-wide vacuum head with scrubbing brushes, a reusable filter bag, a debris container, and a nose cap that connects to the vacuum head.

    Once this unit is fully charged, it will run for about 45 minutes. It then takes the battery four hours to fully charge up again, which is a bit long if you’re in the middle of cleaning your pond.

    While this unit may not be ideal for a very dirty pond, it can be used to spot clean a well-maintained pond that doesn’t have an algae problem or debris stuck on the bottom or sides. It does a good job at removing common pond debris like dead leaves, dirt, and grime with good suction.

    Pros
    • Lightweight and portable
    • Low-priced
    • Easy to use
    Cons
    • Can’t reach the bottom of deep ponds
    • Not ideal for very dirty ponds
    • Takes 4 hours to recharge the battery

    9. LXun Mini Jet Handheld Jet Vacuum Cleaner

    LXun Mini Jet Handheld Jet Vacuum Cleaner

    Power: Water pressure-powered
    Max suction depth: 4 feet
    Suction hose length: N/A
    Power cord length: No power cord needed

    The Mini Jet Handheld Jet Vacuum Cleaner by LXun is another pond vacuum cleaner powered by the water pressure coming from your garden hose. This unit is made of ABS plastic and comes with a 5-piece pole set that’s 4 feet long when put together. This makes the vacuum appropriate for ponds under four feet deep and unsuitable for deeper ponds.

    The Mini Jet comes with a vacuum head with built-in brushes which is a big plus! It also comes with a reusable mesh debris bag, a water inlet connector, and a quick connector for your hose. While the Mini Jet does a good job of sucking out things like dead leaves and dirt and grime that’s settled on the bottom of a pond, it struggles a bit to remove stuck-on grime and larger pieces of debris.

    This is the cheapest pond vacuum cleaner we’ve included in our list as it only costs about the same amount you’d have to spend for a large family pizza. The plastic construction of this vacuum is not the best which means the unit may not last long if something cracks or breaks.

    Pros
    • Vacuum head has built-in brushes
    • Does a good job removing leaves and loose dirt
    • No cords or batteries to deal with
    • Lightweight and easy to use
    Cons
    • Not suitable for deep ponds
    • Plastic feels cheap
    • Struggles to remove bigger debris and stuck-on grime

    10. Colibrox Mini Jet Vacuum Cleaner

    Colibrox Mini Jet Vacuum Cleaner

    Power: Water pressure-powered
    Max suction depth: 8 feet
    Suction hose length: N/A
    Power cord length: No power cord needed

    The final pond vacuum cleaner on our list of the ten best is an affordable little unit by Colibrox called simply the Mini Jet Vacuum. This is yet another cordless pond vacuum that uses the water pressure from a garden hose to power the unit.

    Like other portable water pressure-powered pond vacuums, the Mini Jet comes with a 5-piece aluminum pole that is 4.8 feet long when put together. This limits how deep this vacuum can reach, making it only appropriate for pools under 5 feet deep. The suction power of this vacuum is good enough to remove leaves, dirt, and other debris but it’s not powerful enough to remove things like string algae or stuck-on silt and grime. This pond vacuum is made of plastic which makes the unit lightweight but the overall construction feels cheap.

    Pros
    • Lightweight and easy to use
    • Easily removes leaves and other lightweight debris
    Cons
    • Plastic construction isn’t the best
    • Mesh bag doesn’t catch all the dirt and sand on a pond bottom
    • No instructions

    Related Read: 8 Best Pond Sludge Removers – Reviews & Top Picks

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    Buyer’s Guide

    When looking for a pond vacuum cleaner, there are a few things to consider to ensure you find the right product that best suits your needs. Your budget is one consideration as pond vacuums can cost as much as several hundred dollars or as little as $25. A good pond vacuum should have a lot of suction power so it can easily remove any and all debris that makes its way into your pond like leaves, seedpods, tiny twigs, dirt, and debris. The best models can even remove stuck-on debris and stubborn things like string algae.

    Battery-Powered vs Corded

    When shopping for a pond vacuum cleaner, think about what power source you need. If your pond tends to get very dirty, it’s best to go with a high voltage vacuum cleaner with lots of suction power so you can keep your pond sparkling clean. If you don’t have such high cleaning demands, a battery-powered pond vacuum should suffice. If you don’t want a vacuum with lots of bells and whistles, take a good look at the battery-operated pond vacuum cleaner reviews above as one of those should tick all the right boxes for you.

    Size

    Another main consideration when shopping for a pond vacuum cleaner is size. Some of these vacuums are large and heavy which means they’re not so easy to store away or move about. The lighter models are those that are powered by the pressure coming from your garden hose.

    You might also be interested in: How To Keep Pond Water Clean Without a Filter

    Conclusion

    We hope these pond vacuum cleaner reviews have helped you learn what options are out there for cleaning your backyard pond. We highly recommend taking a close look at the OASE PondoVac Classic or the OASE PondoVac 3 as we consider these two of the best pond vacuum cleaners on the market today. Although they’re more costly than several of the other vacuums we’ve covered, these two have the power and accessories you need to keep your pond as clean as it can be!


    Featured Image Credit: Nach-Noth, Shutterstock

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