Waterpik Ultra Water Flosser Review

Waterpik Ultra Water Flosser Review

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.

Preview Product Rating Price
Waterpik Ultra Water Flosser Waterpik Ultra Water Flosser 844 Reviews £60.56

How does this large electric powered flosser really work in practice and compare to the cheaper and more regularly adopted standard flossing technique?

You can read our detailed Waterpik Ultra Water Flosser review below or watch our hands-on video review.

For a comparison of all the water flossers currently available, you may also like to check out our best water flosser article.

Video Review

Key Features

  • 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

What’s in the box?

  • Waterpik Ultra Water Flosser (WP-120UK)
  • Classic jet tip
  • Toothbrush tip
  • Plaque seeker tip
  • Orthodontic tip
  • Pik pocket tip
  • Tongue cleaner
  • Documentation

The water flosser should be used in conjunction with brushing the teeth. Whether you use a manual toothbrush or electric one, the flosser is just that, for flossing, not for cleaning the teeth as a whole. Having said this, there is a toothbrush tip, its not recommended for the best oral hygiene routine, better suited to a quick clean.

Opt for one of the recommended brushes that we have reviewed here on the Electric Teeth site and you should be left with that fresh clean feeling in the mouth.

Waterpik claim that if the WP-120 Waterpik Ultra is used daily, within 14 days of using this you will have healthier gums. This of course depends on how healthy your gums are in the first place, but I do believe everyone can benefit. Of course those who are a little irregular with flossing will see the biggest benefits.

Capable of removing 99.9% of plaque and said to be 2 times more effective than regular string floss according to Waterpik, these are bold claims backed up by research.

Design, Usability, Clean & General Use

waterpik ultra flosser pictured in full

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.waterpik close up showing button

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.

waterpik in hand

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.

close up of waterpik holding tips

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.
  • The 6 tips are named and designed to do as follows

tips laid out flat

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 waterflosser 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.

waterpik ultra flosser showing lead

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.

waterpik controls

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.

waterpik close up

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 an areas that you will miss.

Powering the Ultra Water Flosser WP-120

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.​

waterpik underside showing cable

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.

Price & Where to buy

Available at prices ranging from £50 to £60 generally speaking the Waterpik is not heavily discounted compared to its recommended retail price of £59.99 in the UK. We picked ours up from Amazon, which currently has it discounted slightly.

Is this a fair price? It is a one off purchase, the only ongoing cost is the electric to power it and the water to use for flossing and it’s virtually impossible to price that!

There are competing products but many are similar but different. Some are more portable whilst others are designed to stay put like the Ultra water flosser. Those more permanent solutions are similarly priced and should be judged more on their capability and suitability than the overall price.

Using the average price this will set you back £55.
Based on a 3 years of ownership and one user, which is the standard measure for us here at Electric Teeth, the cost will come to approximately just 5p per day.

Compare this to say a conventional string floss which works out at about 1p per day and then a more premium string floss such as Oral-B Floss Picks that would work out at 13p per day and the water flosser sits at the cheaper end of the scale.

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 costs quoted are approximates and prices will vary based on location, supplier, time of purchase. These figures should not be relied on as hard fact but as a guide, based on real information at the time of writing.

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.

close up open with tips

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.

Conclusion

I come away with mixed feelings on the Ultra water flosser. Having spent many years using traditional string floss the water flosser feels like a bit of overkill.

However the experience on the gums and teeth is superb. It feels softer, I can get to more areas of the mouth more easily and I would imagine (no scientific tests completed) actually have been left with a better clean.

For those which tender gums or other conditions that leave the mouth feeling more sensitive the adjustable settings for the pressure along with the broad array of tips make this a winning combination.

Due to my bathroom lacking a shaver socket this is not ideal in my bathroom and the fact you are attached, even with the stretchy hose can be a bit of a hindrance.

It is also noisy so could easily wake people up in the house if you decide to floss early in the morning or late at night.

If string floss fills you with dread or is simply a no for you, if you are serious about clean teeth and gums then the Waterpik Ultra water flosser is a serious solution that has a one off cost and not an ongoing financial commitment, you will just need to find a bit of space on a work surface for it.​

Waterpik Ultra Water Flosser
844 Reviews
Waterpik Ultra Water Flosser
  • Clean the device after each use as specified in the user manual
  • Advanced control delivers a water pressure of 10 to 90 PSI with 1200 pulses per minute
  • Removes debris and bacteria lodged deep between teeth and below the gum-line
  • Includes six tips: classic jet tip, plaque seeker tip, tongue cleaner, an orthodontic tip and a Pik-Pocket tip
  • Advanced pressure control system with 10 settings

Electric Teeth Rating

Size Guide

Height – 21cm

Width – 14cm

Depth – 11.5cm

Hose length – 86cm or 100cm with handle

Power cable – 132cm

All are approximates

Waterpik Ultra Water Flosser User Guide/ Manual

https://www.waterpik.co.uk/oral-health/pdfs/WP-120UK-instruction-manual

Summary
Review Date
Reviewed Item
Waterpik Ultra Water Flosser
Author Rating
31star1star1stargraygray
Jon Love

About Jon Love

Jon is a leading voice on electric toothbrushes and has been quoted by mainstream media publications for his opinions and expertise.

Having handled & tested hundreds of products there really is very little he does not know about them.

Passionate about business and helping others, Jon has been involved in various online enterprises since the early 2000s.

After spending 12 years in consumer technology, it was in 2014 that he focused his attention on dental health, having experienced first-hand the challenge of choosing a new toothbrush.

Read More

Leave a comment or question

10 thoughts on “Waterpik Ultra Water Flosser Review”

  1. I bought a Waterpik flosser after a dentist’s recommendation. It failed completely after about a year when the hose failed. I contacted the manufacturer’s distributor Church & Dwight and they refused to repair or replace it despite it being a faulty product.
    These units are shoddy and don’t last very long so I would recommend that people avoid buying them.

    Reply
    • Hi John. Sorry to hear about the problem you experienced with the water flosser you had.

      It is of course inevitable that some units will fail, although our experience is very few do. They are electrical products and sadly nobody can guarantee 100% reliability.

      Waterpik’s warranty’s tend to be quite good. This Ultra Water flosser at time of review came with a 3 year warranty.

      Was it this flosser you had that failed? If they did not repair or replace it, did they give a reason as to why. I am presuming it was outside of the warranty period for some reason?

      Reply
      • Thanks for your comment Jon. I agree that there are bound to be some faulty units… but what really stunned me was the attitude of the Company that supplied it.. They were terrible and refused to either repair, replace or supply a new hose. I had only owned it for just over a year and only used it about once a week. They told me I needed a receipt which I hadn’t kept.
        They may be legally correct… time will tell but fortunately we have strong and comprehensive consumer laws which I am sure will cause them to rectify their despicable behaviour.
        I am currently taking action under these consumer laws.

        Reply
        • Thanks for the extra information John.

          It sounds disappointing. Whilst I am sure they do require the receipt as part of their process, one would have thought they would have worked out the manufacture date etc.

          Are you based in the UK?

          Reply
  2. One thing you forgot to mention is, the Waterpik Ultra is a 240v model. Trying to use it in the bathroom, in the shaver socket is useless.
    Because of this, it is not really good for UK bathrooms. Stretching a cable into the bathroom is unsafe and not recommended.

    The only place you can really use it is in the Kitchen, which for me is a BIG no no and highly impractical.

    I bought mine, and only used it about 5 times since I have had it.

    Reply
    • Hi. Thanks for the comments. The model we reviewed has come with a 2 pin shaver socket that can be powered from the power socket in a bathroom and not a 240V 3 pin UK mains adapter.

      I was a little surprised by your comments and have done a bit of research and found some may have come with such, but now they appear to come with shaver socket connections so it is safe. It can be powered off 240v 3 pin mains power with an adapter if you do with though. An adapter is required for this.

      Shame you have not used yours more. When you did use it did you find it did what you wanted of it?

      Reply
    • UK shaver sockets often have a 240v and a 110v output. You can only use one at a time. If they have one output only it will be 240v. If you have a shaver socket in the bathroom, it will have 240v.

      We have had a Waterpik Nano (no longer available. Same principle as the model reviewed but smaller tank & footprint) for years now & use it plugged into the shaver socket in our bathroom, in the 240v side. It’s been very reliable. The hose split once but Waterpik supplies a replacement kit consisting of hose, handle and reed valve.

      Reply
Leave a comment