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The Zodiac Baracuda MX8 is a completely different design inside and out from the normal Baracuda range. Using a cyclonic vacuum inside the head of the cleaner to pull a flapped engine rather than contracting and retracting a Diaphragm like the traditional Barracuda’s the MX8 is able to use this new driving method to turn a section of gears inside the cleaner to navigate around the pool and prevent it from getting stuck.
The wearing of parts on the cleaner is limited to the tracks of the MX-8 as you would expect, since it is the only part of the cleaner that make contact with the pool surface in normal operation. Notable repairs to the cleaner are stripped gears and the flaps of the engine snapping off. The reason for this is due to the high amounts of pressure in the cleaner, causing the cleaner to run too fast and break, less speed will prevent the cleaner from wearing out as quickly. Since the release Zodiac now include a flow restricting valve for the head of the cleaner to make sure it runs at the correct speed indicated by the manufacture, after this revision repairs are very few and far between. This Revision is available free from any Zodiac dealer.
Visually the MX8 looks impressive and far more attractive than similar style cleaners from other brands. Using the same hose as the Zodiac T5 section cleaner and bearings from a Polaris, each suit the cleaner like it was made especially for it.
Like most Zodiac Baracuda pool cleaners it is backed by a two year warranty on all parts including the hose, suits all surfaces of pools and is fantastic for free form and Lap pools. The only thing to keep in mind is the MX8 does not scrub the surface of the pool anywhere close to a traditional suction cleaner.
Cleaning debris out of the cleaner is easy and requires no dis-assembly, simply un-clip the lid of the cleaner and remove the debris around the engine. For larger leaves a reducing yellow clip can be removed to allow a larger space for debris to pass through. The MX8 works very well picking up dirt, but struggles with long leaves like palms as they can wrap around the engine assembly.
If the MX8 gets trapped on the step or in a corner the pre-mapped rotation in the gears including reverse and turn will drive it free. Overall the MX8 is a problem solving cleaner which works great in square sided,lap and pools where as traditional suction cleaner will not.
This is our honest and individual opinion.