The Waterpik Ultra Plus is a slightly updated version of the Ultra (non plus variant) reviewed here.
The key differences are:
- The colour of the unit
- Subtle design differences
- The Ultra Plus has a slider switch on the handle rather than a push button
It is bulky and noise compared to regular string floss.
But, it is clinically proven to improve the health of your gums and can feel a lot less awkward and fiddly once you have mastered the technique.
Whilst the WP-120 Ultra does all you need of it, the newer WP-600/662 is a better choice for most. It is quieter and as comparably priced.
- Reasonable tank size
- Selection of nozzles included
- 3 year warranty
- 10 pressure settings
|Waterpik Ultra Water Flosser||936 Reviews||£62.99||View on Amazon|
The 3 BIG questions about the Waterpik Ultra water flosser
If you are short of time, the answers to the following 3 questions should let you know all you need to about the Waterpik Ultra If I have missed something, let me know in the comments.
If you want more detail, you can read my full Waterpik review further down the page.
1. Is there anything drastically wrong with this water flosser?
No, it does what it is designed to do and no major issues exist with it.
2. Which other water flossers should I consider?
The newer Waterpik WP-660/662 is a touch more expensive, but it is quieter and has an improved design in my opinion.
There isn’t a great deal of difference between the two and fundamentally they achieve the same results, but it has topped our list of best water flossers.
3. Where is the best place to buy the Waterpik Ultra Water Flosser?
Whilst you won’t find this on the shelves of every supermarket, online retailers like Amazon along with major pharmacy brands such as Boots tend to stock Waterpik flossers.
Why should you listen to us?
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And now for a bit more detail…
Your mouth is the gateway to your overall health, so keeping your gums healthy is essential.
You may have been advised by your dentist, friends or family to floss regularly and they would be right to suggest this. However, flossing can be difficult and painful for some.
The Waterpik Ultra Water Flosser (WP-120) uses the power of water to wash away food particles and bacteria that builds up along the gum line and in between teeth.
How does this large electric powered flosser really work in practice and compare to the cheaper and more regularly adopted standard flossing technique?
What’s in the box?
- Waterpik Ultra Water Flosser (WP-120UK)
- 1 x Classic jet tip
- 1 x Toothbrush tip
- 1 x Plaque seeker tip
- 1 x Orthodontic tip
- 1 x Pik pocket tip
- 1 x Tongue cleaner
- Removes 99.9% of plaque
- 2 times as effective as string floss
- 3 times more effective than string floss when cleaning around braces
- 10 pressure settings
- 3 year warranty
Pro & Cons
Here are what I consider to be the pros and cons of the Waterpik Ultra.
- Reasonable tank size – A large enough reservoir to allow you to complete a thorough clean.
- Selection of nozzles included – The right nozzle for you included in the box.
- 3 year warranty – A warranty longer than most other products gives an extra level of confidence to this flosser.
- 10 pressure settings – Variable pressure settings so that you can find the perfect flossing experience for you.
- Noisy -When powered on it makes quite a bit of noise and is probably a bit louder than you expect.
Design, usability, clean & general use
There is no denying this Waterpik unit is a little big and bulky for me in my average sized bathroom. It needs work surface or shelf space as well as connectivity to power. It looks like something that should be in a dentist’s office.
However, looks and size aside this piece of kit packs a punch when it comes to flossing.
It is not the traditional solution – string floss tends to bend – but this offers a potentially more effective and better experience for those who use it, according to the research.
However, data from clinical studies aside, how it works for you and I is really what matters.
Finished in a clinical white with a smart blue water tank the WP-120 is not the most unsightly thing really, it has been designed as best as it can for a bathroom, with sweeping curves and no sharp edges.
From the power button to the pressure gauge, buttons, parts are easy to use even for those who may have limited movement in fingers and when fingers are wet.
The water tank on the top holds approximately 90 seconds worth of water (600ml) for flossing which will last 1-2 cleans for the average user. Easily removed and refilled, you can fill it with cold or lukewarm water and even drop in a shot of mouthwash if you really want that zingy fresh feeling when using.
On top of the tank itself is the lid which doubles as a storage container for the different tips available. Rather amusingly it holds only 4 tips when 6 are included. Even if one is fitted to the machine that still leaves one without a home.
I am being a little unfair because most will not be choosing to use all 6 regularly.
It is a convenient and useful storage location for them and they are easy to access and remove and replace if required.
The six tips are named and designed as follows:
- Classic jet tip – For general use offering twice as effective results than string
- Toothbrush tip – For brushing and flossing at the same time
- Plaque seeker tip – Ideal for those with implants, crowns, bridges or veneers targeting plaque in hard to reach areas.
- Orthodontic tip – Great for those with braces offering up to 3 times more effectiveness than traditional floss
- Pik pocket tip – Delivering medicament and rinsing deep below the gumline those with periodontal pockets and furcations benefit most here.
- Tongue cleaner – Freshens the breath by removing bacteria from the tongue’s surface.
As you can see it is up to you which suits your needs best. Once you have you can simply attach the tip of choice.
Of course, if used amongst several people it needs to be easy to replace heads and it is, taking just a few seconds with a simply click and release style design. Push the tip into the hole on the top of the handle and you will hear a clicking sound to confirm it is in place. To release simply press the small blue button to the left side of the handle and pull the tip out.
Once the tip is connected and the tank filled, switch the power on and use the pressure setting knob to adjust to your preference. 1 is low pressure for those with greater sensitivity whilst 10 is the most powerful setting.
When on the machine does produce quite a bit of noise due to the pump inside. It is a bit noisier than an electric toothbrush.
The handle of the Waterpik water flosser is connected to the machine via a small white hose which is conveniently tucked away within the body of the flosser. Just pull the hose out to extend the reach. When extended the hose has a length of about 86cm or 100 cm is you include the handle too.
Thus you could be up to 2 meters away from the power source, when flossing, if you take into consideration the length of the power cord and the flosser hose.
The elliptical design of the handle fits comfortably in the hand and the large, pale blue button on the front is the key to driving the water flossing power.
From the moment the power button is flicked to the on position this thing is spouting out water. Press and hold the blue button on the handle to stop the flow and then release to allow it to restart.
The tip can be rotated a full 360 degrees thanks to the top of the handle rotating and the ridges around the top make it easy to grip onto to rotate, although it is not all that easy mid floss in my opinion.
The length of the tips certainly meant that I could reach more areas of the mouth more easily than with traditional floss, but you have to be a master of the dark arts to stop yourself from making a mess when using this.
I jest a little, after a few days my technique got a lot better, but I am not lying that for the first couple of uses, the mirror in front of me and my chin and shirt got a bit of a wash too. It is just a bit odd. Due to being attached by a cable and the fact that the laws of physics means the water pumped into your mouth has to go somewhere, you need to do this over a sink.
Some could probably make this look more glamorous than it is, but if you want to impress someone in your life, letting them see you using the flosser will be a test! You will be a dribbler when using this!
In short, spend a bit of time practising before you write this off. It took me a few days but it did get easier and by the end of the 6 weeks, I wouldn’t call myself a pro, but the water hit where it should and I achieved proper flossing results.
Thankfully I do not suffer from sensitive gums so I tended to use this on the pressure setting around 7-8 and found it quite comfortable and effective. It felt like a good balance between power and control.
Adjusting the angle of the tip head can be a little fiddly mid floss, especially if you pause the water flow too. But those with able hands should be able to either use your other hand to twist the top or raise a finger up from your grip and give the top of the handle a nudge.
I quite liked the bit of mouthwash in the water when I was using it to give that zing and freshness to the floss.
I also found it took a week or so to find a routine of how I would actually position the tip in my mouth. Like brushing, I completed it by a quadrant at a time, slowly moving around the teeth and gums.
Whilst my teeth a free from braces now for many years I did wear them and my routine for cleaning seemed a little obsessive had I known then than I could use a product like the flosser.
The different tips are fantastic and I know that this would make many braces wearers life a lot easier than lots of little manual brushes for getting in the small gaps. Offering a reliable stream of pressure as well as stiff bristles there should not be any areas that you will miss.
The flosser requires power, mains power. This does not run off batteries, neither built-in nor rechargeable, nor is there a wind up motor.
You need to connect the Waterpik to a shaver socket using the supplied 2 pin connector, or you can connect it to a standard wall socket with the relevant adapter for your country.
Here in the UK you need a 2 PIN to 3 PIN adapter which are generally readily available from a good hardware store or online for a few pounds.
Most will sit this in a bathroom and there may only be one shaver socket to connect it to, which other appliances may require use of, so it is unlikely (depending on your setup) that this can remain plugged in all the time, but its not much hassle to connect or reconnect to power.
The power cable is approximately 130cm or 52” long so in most bathrooms you can manipulate the position in which it sits.
White is the colour or the power adaptor and the cable.
Summary of design, usability, clean & general use
- Corded water flosser
- Bulky unit, but in part inevitable by the type of product
- Clinically proven to be effective & good for gum health
- 600ml tank will last for around 90 seconds
- Storage container for tips included on the top of the unit
- Good choice of tips included in the box
- 10 pressure settings
- Rotatable nozzles
- The technique takes time to perfect
Price & where to buy
I have included links to buying options here at the start of the review.
In the section below, I discuss the price more generally and in relation to similar products.
The official retail price is £64.99.
Although it is sometimes possible to pick such products up with a bit of a discount, the savings tend not to be that great.
It should be possible to save around about £5, bringing the cost in at approximately £60.
To give a benchmark of the cost, we like to price products over a 3 year period.
I am going to presume for the sake of this calculation that you will be using the classic tip. Although the WP-120 comes with 6 tips, only 1 is a classic tip.
They should be replaced every 6 months, so a further 5 will be needed over a 3 year period.
A pack of 2 retails at £8.99, making a nozzle £4.50 each. Although, you can get this price down to just £4 each without too much effort.
With approximately a £60 buy price, plus a further cost of £20 (5 x jet tips at £4 each) gives a total cost of £80 or £0.07 per day.
To be honest, for this price, the Ultra Professional is a much better option. It offers a little more for the same money.
Of course, this is more expensive than regular string floss that works out at just 1-2p per day. However, it is easier to use. There is a price to be paid for convenience. It could well be worth it because you might make more use of it than regular floss.
Of course, use it for longer or between more of you and it can become even more cost effective.
It is also worth noting that this product comes with a 3 year warranty.
Please note that all prices quoted are approximates and will vary based on location, supplier and time of purchase. These figures were correct at the time of writing and should not be relied upon as hard fact, but used as a guide during your decision process.
Summary of price & where to buy
- List of buying options included here
- Recommended retail price of £64.99
- Generally available for £60
- Costs about 7p per day over 3 years
- Better value options exist
Reliability & long term use
We put all products like this through 6 weeks of testing to simulate everyday use and really get a feel for the product.
We have encountered no problems to date with the flosser nor can we really see any major issues with the design or construction. A regular clean should keep the flosser looking as new and operational for many years.
If left unused, it is advisable to run some water through occasionally to keep things in working order and avoid leaving water standing in the container for extended periods of time.
Do avoid to run the tank on empty for too long as this can damage parts as it tries to draw through liquid that is not present. We were unable to simulate in just 6 weeks, but the hose that connects to the flosser may become less taut over time, which could be beneficial to you, but coiling the cable back up neatly will keep it taut.
Research from other users would suggest some can fail which is the case for any product and we have seen no evidence that should pose a concern to you in deciding to purchase this Waterpik flosser.
The WP-120 does what you need a water flosser to do. It works well.
Mastering the technique can be a bit tricky, but it is less awkward than traditional string floss, even if you need to be lent over a skin.
I like the large capacity reservoir. It allows you to continue for a little longer if you want to get that perfect clean.
Rotate the nozzle to get the perfect cleaning angle and adjust the pressure to find the one that is right for you. What is not to like?
It is a touch noisier than I would like. By the very nature of the product, it does take up some space in the bathroom.
The design is a little dated.
Given there are newer, quieter options exist, Waterpik Ultra Professional, my recommendation is to opt for those instead.
- Height – 21cm
- Width – 14cm
- Depth – 11.5cm
- Hose length – 86cm or 100cm with handle
- Power cable – 132cm
All are approximates
Do you own or have you used the Waterpik Ultra.
Are there certain features that you really like or dislike?
Let us know what you think about this brush and let others who may well be considering purchasing one know your opinions before they do.