The Waterpik WP-861 Complete Care 5.0 sonic toothbrush and water flosser is a compact, effective dental care set. The price is excellent, and we found it to be effective at keeping out dental health squeaky clean. Unfortunately, it lets us down a little with longevity.
Waterpik WP-861 Specs & Accessories
- Pressure settings: 1 to 10
- Pressure range: 10 to 100 PSI
- Pulses per minute (PPM): 1400
- Pulses per second (PPS): 23
- Flow rate per minute (FRPM): 384ml or 13oz
- Separate rechargeable sonic toothbrush and water flosser
- 650ml water tank capacity (22oz)
- 3 brushing speeds (clean, whiten, massage)
- 2-minute brushing timer with 30-second pacers
- 2 years warranty
- 5 water flossing tips
- 2 triple sonic brush heads
- Premium toothbrush travel case
- Deluxe recharge indicator display
The Waterpik Complete Care 5.0 (WP-861 model), not to be confused with the very similar Complete Care 5.5 which has an oscillating/rotating toothbrush rather than sonic, is a combined set of toothbrush and flosser.
Both items sit snugly in a plastic base with a removable water reservoir for the flosser (90-second capacity) and a long charging cord that plugs into the shaving socket. The base charges both via induction and there’s a handy light at the base of the toothbrush that shows how full the battery is. You can monitor the water reservoir level easily too as it’s opaque.
Also included in the box are 5 water flossing tips: 2 classic jet tips, 1 orthodontic tip, 1 pickpocket tip, and 1 plaque seeker tip. As for the toothbrush heads, you get 2 triple sonic replacement heads.
All of this comes with a premium toothbrush travel case (which compared to the actual toothbrush care set is blatantly not that premium) and 2 years of warranty should anything break.
It’s designed as a complete care set. Short of providing mouthwash and toothpaste, it meets that criteria nicely!
Overall, the design and specs are space-saving. 2 devices usually use 2 outlets and 2 bases, while the WP-861 only needs 1. That being said, you do still need space to store the spare brush heads, travel case and flosser tips. For a single person, we can see this really saving space. For families, the space it saves is minimal and with 4+ people using it every day, we predict the longevity issues to only get worse (more on that below).
Waterpik WP-861 Functionality
Starting with the base and power cord, we can’t find any faults here. The cord is long enough to stretch over the counter if your shaving socket isn’t located nearby and the base does what it says on the tin. It charges well and it holds everything together neatly.
Triple Sonic Toothbrush
The brush is pretty standard. It’s the same design for all-electric brushes – easy to grip silicone plastic with removable brush heads. You’d have to be living under a rock to not know how to operate it. But, in any case, you can review our list of best electric toothbrush models and learn all that there is to know about the latest tech.
It has 3 modes that can be switched between by pressing a button to change which one is lit up on the brush handle. Turning it off and on is as simple as pressing the big on/off switch. Your 3 brushing modes are:
Clean – a good one for everyday brushing.
Whiten – removes stains and polishes your teeth.
Massage – enhances gum stimulation
All 3 are notably different, powerful and effective. The diamond-shaped toothbrush head also has a tongue scraper on the back – a nice extra touch we liked.
The reservoir is removable, so filling it up is bliss even when you’re half asleep. You can fill it with a good mouthwash instead of water if you like, just remember to rinse through the flosser with water afterward. The flosser and tips included are all great too – there’s variety here so you can find which works best for you if you’ve not tried a Waterpik flosser before. The 10 pressure settings work and we felt that it performed as you’d expect. It flossed our teeth. Enough said, Waterpik are known for offering the best water flossers on the market.
However, we did our research on this dental care set and spoke with some people who’d used it for more than just a few weeks like us. Common problems with the Waterpik WP-861 are leaks from the reservoir and pressure drop from the water flosser. You do have a 2-year warranty included, just be aware that returning the product isn’t necessarily free.
The lifespan seems to be a year or maybe two at most. You can prolong this by cleaning it every month or so using a vinegar and water solution to prevent mineral build-up in the flosser. Or you could try using filtered water rather than tap water. There’s more info on cleaning the unit from Waterpik.
WP-861 Complete Care 5.0 Design
Aesthetically, we’re drooling our toothpaste out over this. It’s sleek, it’s compact and it’s well designed. The simple addition of a battery symbol to show you how charged it is set it ahead in the market. It’s little things like that which make your life just that little bit easier.
The premium travel case that’s included is not so great, however. It has enough space for your brush and some toothbrush heads, but that’s it. You can’t take your water flosser or base with you, which means you’ll need to buy a separate charging cord for taking the brush away with you.
The package is great for those with average dental health and quite good for those with other concerns. The flosser tips are good for those with braces and the massage mode on the toothbrush is good for those with gum issues.
- Great price compared to buying flosser and brush separately
- Range of flossing heads included
- Good water pressure and brush power
- Good options for those with gum issues/braces too
- Short life span
- Only brush and brush heads in the travel case
Comparing the care set to other Waterpik products that have both a flosser and brush (like the Sonic Fusion and more recent Complete Care 9.5) this model is significantly cheaper at the time of writing.
Yet the performance is just as good. We’ve concluded that yes, this is worth the money. The performance issues and short lifespan might be a concern, but with Waterpik’s 2-year warranty and replacement parts available it’s not a huge concern. If the unit will be shared amongst several people, expect it to wear much faster – that’s why we recommend it more for singletons and those that don’t like to share.
Author: Peter Mayhew
Peter is a dental hygienist in the city of Chicago, IL. In his free time he likes to write blogs and product reviews on anything dental health related.