Polaris Vac-Sweep 380 vs 3900: Pressure Pool Cleaners

If you’ve owned a pool for any length of time, you’ve probably tried out a few different types of pool cleaners. Suction-type and robotic pool cleaners are both somewhat low-maintenance, and most don’t require the dedicated pump that pressure side cleaners need to run.

This dedicated pool pump idea seems to scare some people off pressure side pool cleaners, but as anyone who owns one will tell you, they honestly deliver one of the best results.

Polaris Vac-Sweep 380 vs 3900: Pressure Side Pool Cleaner Comparison

Polaris Vac-Sweep 380


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We’ll take a look at two different pressure side pool cleaners from Polaris today as we try to figure out which model is best for your needs. Both models have decently sized inlets for medium to large debris along with filter bags to extend the life of your pool’s onboard filter.

These pool cleaners use wheels to travel along the floor and walls while they filter water and keep your pool looking great. But there are some major feature differences we’ll have to discuss before you make your decision.

Polaris Vac-Sweep 3900 vs 380: Pressure Side Pool Cleaner Comparison

Polaris Vac-Sweep 3900

Filter Bag

Polaris 380
This model comes with a two-liter filter bag with a zipper. Two liters is a nice capacity and saves you the trouble of having to clean it out too often. One of the advantages of a pressure cleaner is that its filtration system saves your pool’s filter a lot of work – up to 80%, in fact.

You can imagine how much this extends the life of a pool filter, which is much more irritating to change than a pool cleaner.

Polaris 3900
Two liters is a good size, but this model can hold a lot more. This dual-chamber filter bag has a five-liter capacity! This is great news if your pool attracts a lot of debris, but even if debris isn’t a huge problem for you, the capacity on this bag means you can leave it alone for longer. The point of having a pool cleaner is to cut down on your labor, and five liters means a lot less poolside maintenance trips.

Polaris Vac-Sweep 380 vs 3900

Polaris Vac-Sweep 380

Verdict: There’s not much of a contest here – at more than double the capacity of its competitor, the 3900 Sport provides you with the best filter bag. If the price is an issue and you don’t live in a debris-heavy area, the two-liter capacity of the Polaris 380 may be just fine; but it’s always better to be prepared.

We’ll take a look at some other factors that play into just how these pool vacuums do the work they do, but in this category, there is a clear winner.

Polaris Pressure Side Pool Cleaner Articles

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Best Polaris Pressure Side Pool Cleaners

Single Product Review
Polaris Vac-Sweep 65
Polaris Vac-Sweep 280

Comparison Articles
Polaris Vac-Sweep 65 vs 280
Polaris Vac-Sweep 280 vs 360 vs 380

Vacuum Inlet

Polaris 380
Pressure side models almost always have larger inlets than other types of pool cleaners. While this is a necessity if you live somewhere that produces a lot of large debris, it’s also helpful to know that whatever lands in your pool, your device can handle it.

At 2¼ inches, the inlet on this model is ready to take in leaves, twigs, and whatever else is dropping from the sky at any given time.

Polaris Vac-Sweep 3900 vs 380

Polaris Vac-Sweep 3900

Polaris 3900
Again, designed for ultimate performance, this model pulls ahead of its competitor with an extra quarter-inch of inlet diameter. This may not sound like a big advantage, but when you’re dealing with pool debris, even a sixteenth of an inch at the inlet can mean the difference between a clean pool and a personal trip to the bottom with a handheld skimmer.

2 ½ inches of the inlet will stand you in good stead and let you rest easy at the pool while your vacuum does the work.

Verdict: At two and a half inches, the 3900 Sport is the winner in this category, as well. As with the filter bag, you may not feel you need this extra assurance against debris, especially if you live in an area where you just don’t need to worry about it as much.

You may very well be correct; if you have any doubt, however, it’s smart to invest now, so you don’t end up regretting it later.

Polaris Vac-Sweep 380

Polaris Vac-Sweep 380

Movement and Navigation

Polaris 380
The classic three-wheel design of Polaris’ devices has been working for years. Using a belt drive mechanism, this model can rove around all over the floor of your pool, picking up the trash as it goes.

Quality construction means a long-lasting product, and that’s easy to see when you put this model up against suction-type cleaners. Additionally, an in-line back-up valve safeguards against sticky situations by automatically freeing the device if it gets stuck somewhere.

Polaris Vac-Sweep 3900

Polaris Vac-Sweep 3900

Related Polaris Articles

Single Reviews
 • Polaris F9550 Sport Robotic In-Ground Pool Cleaner
 • Polaris Vac-Sweep 280 Pressure Side Pool Cleaner
 • Polaris Vac-Sweep 3900 Pressure Side Pool Cleaner
Comparison Articles
 • Polaris F9550 vs F9450 vs 9400 vs F9350
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Polaris 3900
This model has been designed with power in mind. It uses rugged Wide Trax tires along with an all-wheel PosiDrive system that allows it to navigate your pool floor with ease. A stainless steel chain helps this system deliver 50% more torque than regular models.

While the Polaris 380 also features a tail-sweeper, this model comes with TailSweep PRO: advanced technology that blows debris out of corners more effectively than normal tail-sweepers.

Verdict: The 3900 Sport stays in the lead here with more rugged design and construction. From the Wide Trax tires to the PosiDrive system, it delivers everything from the 380 and more. It may be that some of this technology seems unnecessary for your situation, but when you’re selecting a pool cleaner, you want something that is built to last.

Polaris Vac-Sweep 380 vs 3900: Pressure Side Pool Cleaner Comparison

Related Pressure Pool Cleaners Articles

Buying Guides
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Single Product Review
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Comparison Articles
Polaris Vac-Sweep 280 vs 360 vs 380
Polaris Vac-Sweep 65 vs 280

Info Articles
How do Pressure Pool Cleaners Work?
Pressure vs. Suction vs. Robotic Pool Cleaners

Polaris 380 vs. 3900: Conclusion

Both the Polaris 380 as the 3900 are terrific pressure side pool cleaners. Pressure-type devices with a dedicated pump tend to be more effective at extending your pool filter’s life, as well as general cleaning overall.

After examining the features, however, the Polaris 3900 Sport Pool Side Pressure Cleaner is far ahead of the game when it comes to new technology and performance.

You know best which of these pool cleaners will suit your needs. Perhaps your pool barely ever gets any debris, and you need to find a device that can give it the occasional once-over. If you’re thinking too hard about it, though, you may want to consider everything that the 3900 Sport can deliver. After all, you want to make sure you don’t have to make this decision again for a number of years.

Polaris Vac-Sweep 3900 vs 380: Pressure Side Pool Cleaner Comparison

Our Recommended Pressure Side Pool Cleaners


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Zodiac F5 Polaris Vac-Sweep 280 Pressure Side Pool...
Polaris Vac-Sweep 65 6-130-00 Pressure Side...
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Polaris 280
Polaris 65
• 50% More Torque
• 31ft of Feed Hose
• Requires Polaris Booster Pump
• 10.1 lbs
• Large Capacity Filter Bag
• 31ft of Feed Hose
• Requires Polaris Booster Pump
• 6.2 lbs
• Suitable for All Above Ground Pools
• 24ft of Float Hose
• Operates with Pump
• 13.94 lbs
The new and improved Polaris 3900 Sport delivers unmatched vacuum power, incomparable convenience, and legendary performance.
The Polaris Vac-Sweep 280 is a powerful pressure-side pool cleaner for all in-ground pools and easily connects to a dedicated pressure line.
The Polaris 65 is our best above ground automatic pool cleaner. It installs in minutes and is suitable for all aboveground pools up to 5-feet deep.
Best of the Best!
Polaris Vac-Sweep 3900 Sport Pressure Inground...
Polaris 3900
• 50% More Torque
• 31ft of Feed Hose
• Requires Polaris Booster Pump
• 10.1 lbs
The new and improved Polaris 3900 Sport delivers unmatched vacuum power, incomparable convenience, and legendary performance.
Most Popular
Zodiac F5 Polaris Vac-Sweep 280 Pressure Side Pool...
Polaris 280
• Large Capacity Filter Bag
• 31ft of Feed Hose
• Requires Polaris Booster Pump
• 6.2 lbs
The Polaris Vac-Sweep 280 is a powerful pressure-side pool cleaner for all in-ground pools and easily connects to a dedicated pressure line.
Also Great
Polaris Vac-Sweep 65 6-130-00 Pressure Side...
Polaris 65
• Suitable for All Above Ground Pools
• 24ft of Float Hose
• Operates with Pump
• 13.94 lbs
The Polaris 65 is our best above ground automatic pool cleaner. It installs in minutes and is suitable for all aboveground pools up to 5-feet deep.

Last update on 2021-11-27 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


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About the author

Hi I’m Alexander, founder of HouseholdMe.com and I’d like to say thank you for dropping by. Like most of you, the first thing I look at before buying something online is reviews or buying guides. By reading what other people say will help me gauge whether or not a product is good or not.  I am trying to help people find answers, solve problems, and get inspired.

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