Dolphin M400 Cleaner Review - Worth The Hype? + Best Prices
|Great cleaning, remote control/bluetooth, scheduling function, easy to clean filter
|Inflexible cable, can struggle with curved surfaces, poor instruction manual
|A premium machine with a few minor drawbacks
Product Comparison Table - Dolphin M400 CB
Before we dive into the review, let's take a look at the main specs for this product, and how it compares to other similar models.
|Dolphin M400 CB
|Dolphin M400 WB
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Dolphin M400 Cleaner Review - Worth The Hype? + Best Prices
The Dolphin M400 is a fairly heavy robotic pool cleaner with premium features, and it tends to cost much more than other models of machine, regardless of the brand name.
When considering a cleaner with a premium price tag, it can be tricky to decide if the upgraded features are worth the investment.
In this Maytronics Dolphin M400 review, we cover the pros and cons of this cleaner, compare its features to other pool cleaners, and answer a couple frequently asked questions about this machine to help you decide if it makes a good choice for your pool.
Pros & Cons
- Great at picking up small and large debris
- Climbs walls and scrubs waterline with ease
- Easy to empty filter basket
- Set-and-forget scheduling function
- Can be run while swimmers are present
- Heavier than average (11kg)
- Can struggle in pools with curved surfaces
- Intake port can become blocked by extra-large debris
- Brushes can wear out quickly with frequent use
- Owner’s manual lacking important information
The Dolphin M400 is a large and fairly heavy robotic pool cleaner for pools that are no more than 15 metres in length. Both models of the M400 have an 18 metre long cable, but the M400 CB and M400 WB have other differences.
The Dolphin M400 CB is for inground pools specifically, and is compatible with pebblecrete, quartzon, and beadcrete pool linings. The M400 WB, on the other hand, is for both inground and above ground pools, and works well with concrete, fibreglass, tile, and vinyl lined pools.
Both models of the Dolphin M400 run a 2.5 hour cleaning cycle and work well with small and large debris. Many reviews state that these machines have a filter basket that is easy to clean out and then reinsert into the cleaner.
At 11 kilograms, these machines are fairly heavy compared to other cleaners on the market, weighing twice as much as some of the lightest options.
Some users will have difficulties lifting a robotic cleaner of this weight, particularly once it has finished its cleaning cycle and is full of wet debris.
These machines have a handle on top that adjusts their function. Certain handle positions are required to aid the machines in climbing walls or steps and getting into corners.
Regretfully, many users note that there are insufficient instructions about how to use this feature in the owner's manual.
These cleaners climb walls, scrub the waterline, and come equipped with a caddy for easier transportation. Additionally, the Dolphin M400 is bluetooth compatible, allowing it to be remote-controlled via smartphones.
If you are looking for a lower-maintenance option for your pool, you will be delighted to learn that the M400 also has a scheduling system which will allow the machine to turn on automatically, making it a great choice for those seeking a “set-and-forget” robotic pool cleaner.
The Dolphin M400 works well with both small and large debris, from dirt and dust to large leaves. It should be noted that the intake port for the filter is fairly large, but nonetheless it can become clogged by extra large or hard debris, such as chunks of tree bark.
According to a Maytronics representative, these models of robotic pool cleaner are “not programmed to clean steps, benches, and tanning ledges.”
Their comment goes on to explain that this robot can only function in water that is a minimum of 80-100 cm deep, and will only function on ledges/stairs that are wide enough to support both movement tracks of the machine.
Some users of this robotic pool cleaner have had success getting the machine to clean steps and ledges, but as this is not an advertised feature of the machine, you should not rely on this function.
Many users report that this machine can also get stuck in sharp corners, particularly the corners on the steps in the pool.
Both models of the Dolphin M400 are equipped with a motor that uses 180 watts. This gives the 2.5 hour cleaning cycle a total energy usage of 450 watt hours. This is slightly more energy usage than other machines available on the market, and there are a couple of reasons for this.
First, the Dolphin M400 series is fairly large and heavy, requiring a slightly stronger motor than other pool cleaners.
Additionally, because this machine is rated for larger pools, it has a longer average cleaning cycle length than other models of cleaner, giving it more energy usage per cycle.
Still, they consume tiny amounts of energy relative to other household appliances, so it’s not something to be concerned about.
Build Quality & Warranty
Dolphin M400 Problems
The biggest problem with the Dolphin M400 is that it can struggle with curved pools, such as kidney shaped ones. That being said, there is mixed feedback from users in this area, with many reporting that it covered curved surfaces perfectly.
One small issue with this machine is that the power cable is somewhat inflexible.
Despite the fact that the cleaner is equipped with a swivel port that discourages the cord from becoming kinked or tangled, if your cord does get knotted up, you should work to straighten it out before the material gets used to the contorted shape of the tangles.
Some users report that this machine is prone to breaking after the warranty period, but there are less of these reports than with machines by other brands.
Additionally, the manufacturers of Dolphin products tend to be upfront about the expected longevity of their machines: you will get approximately 500 hours of operational time before there is an increased risk of parts needing replacement.
Dolphin M400 Warranty
The Dolphin M400 models of robotic pool cleaner have a three-year warranty, which is one year longer than most other warranties in the industry.
Although the second two years of this warranty have limited coverage, this amount of protection is still more than is offered by competing manufacturers.
Maytronics is known to have high-quality customer service compared to other brands. Most users that have dealt with Maytronics customer service, repair centres, and warranty claims state that their experiences with customer service were timely, considerate, and understanding.
Dolphin M400 Best Price
At around $2,500, the Dolphin M400 models of pool cleaner are relatively expensive compared to other models of machine, but this is not without justification.
The Dolphin M400 offers premium features, such as bluetooth compatibility and remote control capabilities that other machines lack.
Dolphin is also a premium brand, considered more reliable than many of the competition.
Dolphin M400 - FAQ
What's The Difference Between The Dolphin M400 CB And WB?
The difference between these models of the Dolphin M400 is that the CB is intended for use with pebblecrete, quartzon, and beadcrete pool linings specifically.
The M400 WB is for concrete, fibreglass and tile surfaces as well as vinyl based pool linings.
Does The Dolphin M400 Have Bluetooth?
Yes, the Dolphin M400 has bluetooth compatibility which allows for it to be controlled via smartphone. Using your phone, you can set the cleaner up on a schedule or direct it towards areas of concern for spot-cleaning.
Final Thoughts - Dolphin M400 Review
The Dolphin M400 is a high-quality machine with a premium price point. Although this machine can experience issues occasionally, these problems tend to be very minor.
It is important to remember that this machine is not intended to do steps and ledges.
Also, the operating manual may lack sufficient instructions about certain features of the machine, which may be a source of frustration for some users. Luckily, many third-party demonstrations and other instructional advice is available online.
Overall, we recommend the M400 to those seeking to invest in an upper-range pool cleaner that is equipped with bluetooth and remote-control functionality.
If you do not need these more premium features, there are other well-made and more affordable machines available that do not have the same tech capabilities.
Price Comparison - Dolphin M400 CB
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