Is Tap Water Ok To Use In My WaterPik Flosser?


A WaterPik flosser allows you to floss between your teeth using jets of water rather than having to hold a piece of string. Many people use regular tap water in their WaterPik but worry that it may damage their machine.

The WaterPik flosser reservoir can be filled with tap water, although you may have to carry out extra maintenance and cleaning of your machine to remove calcium deposits, especially if you have hard water.

This article will discuss the pros and cons of using tap water in your WaterPik flosser, and how to get rid of any mineral build up in your machine. We will also cover what else you can put in your WaterPik other than water, and also how to use a WaterPik flosser with things like dentures, vaneers, and crowns.

Can I use tap water in a WaterPik flosser?

You can use tap water in your WaterPik flosser, however if you have hard water you may have to clean your machine more often to remove hard water deposits.

Hard water deposits can gather inside the flosser and reduce water pressure. They can also gather in the flossing tip which will also reduce water pressure.

Water hardness is the total calcium and magnesium ion concentration in a water sample and is expressed as the concentration of calcium carbonate.

According to World health Organization (WHO) water containing calcium carbonate at concentrations:

  • Below 60 mg/l is generally considered as SOFT.
  • Between 60–120 mg/l, MODERATELY HARD.
  • Between 120–180 mg/l, HARD.
  • More than 180 mg/l, VERY HARD.

If you live in an area with hard or very hard water you may want to use a different type of water such as bottled, distilled water (water that has no minerals or salts in it) or demineralized water to avoid damage to your machine and reduce the frequency that you have to clean your machine.

The WaterPik user manual states to use warm water in your machine. You can use different types of water in your WaterPik flosser such as distilled water but this may become expensive depending on how often you are going to use your machine.

What types of water can I use in a WaterPik flosser?

You can use different types of water in your WaterPik flosser but your choice of water may depend on your budget and personal preference.

If you think you are likely to swallow water whilst using your flosser, or you prefer your water to have a good taste, you may prefer water that is suitable for human consumption such as distilled or Reverse osmosis (RO).

Distilled water this is obtained through the process of distillation. In the distillation process pure water is boiled to remove its contaminants. Distilled water is safe to drink, but you’ll probably find the taste flat or bland.

De-mineralized water is specially purified water, from which most of the minerals and salt ions are removed like calcium, magnesium, sodium , chlorides, and sulfates. This is also known as de-ionized water.

According to WHO Drinking low mineral content water all the time is not safe and has shown a negative effect on functions in the body that control water and mineral metabolism. However, if you are just using it in your water flosser then it is perfectly safe.

Reverse osmosis (RO) is a process for water purification. Reverse osmosis filtration is the most popular and best methods available for treatment of contaminated or poor quality water.

The RO water is purified water and is good for human consumption and use in a WaterPik.

Soft water is either naturally soft, such as rain water, or has been artificially softened using a water softener.

Rainwater often doesn’t taste of much as it has not had time to pick up any minerals from the ground.

Artificially softened water is where HARD-water minerals, including calcium and magnesium, have been removed using sodium, which can often leave the water with a salty taste.

Both naturally soft water and artificially softened water is safe to use in a WaterPik, but you may find artificially softened water may be salty as it contains left over sodium ions.

How to get rid of any mineral buildup in the WaterPik flosser?

One of the most common issues with water flossers is HARD water deposits (also called scale or limescale). It’s easy to remove deposits by following these steps:

  1. Remove the water reservoir and rinse the valve.
  2. Place the reservoir on the top rack of your dishwasher and use an air-dry cycle.
  3. After the reservoir is clean, put it back on the machine and run a vinegar-water solution through the flosser.
    • Mix 2-4 tablespoons (1-2 ounces) of 5 % white vinegar with 16 ounces of warm water to make a water vinegar solution.
  4. Rinse the flosser with a full reservoir of clean, warm water.
  5. Soak all flossing tips in either hydrogen peroxide or vinegar for five minutes to remove any mineral buildup.

WaterPik recommend cleaning your machine every 1-3 months to ensure optimal performance. If you have hard or very hard water you may want to clean your machine every month.

What you can add to a WaterPik flosser?

WaterPik recommend using warm water. Water alone is proven highly effective in numerous clinical studies.

It is NOT recommend to add pure essential oils such as tea tree oil to the WaterPik reservoir water as these can destroy the machine.

Any time an agent other than water is used in the Water Flosser, immediately flush the unit afterwards by running plain water through it.

Saltwater

You cannot use saline (saltwater) solution in cordless WaterPik flossers but you can use saltwater in countertop units.

Mouthwash

A small amount of mouthwash can be added to the water in your flosser.

Chlorhexidine (CHX such as PeridexTM and Periogard) and Listerine have been clinically tested for use with the WaterPik Flosser. CHX can be diluted in varying strengths.

To use mouthwash:

  • Add a small amount of mouthwash to a reservoir filled with warm water. (To prevent damage to the unit, do not exceed a 1:1 ratio of mouthwash to water).
  • Use your WaterPik Water flosser as normal.
  • Rinse the unit of any remaining mouthwash by partially filling the reservoir with plain warm water and running it with the tip pointed into the sink.

Baking soda

Baking soda added to the water  can help to kill the bacteria between your teeth. You can add two teaspoons of plain baking soda to a full reservoir of water.

Hydrogen peroxide

A capful of hydrogen peroxide is safe to use in your Waterpik.

Can you use a WaterPik with fillings, vaneers, dentures, or crowns?

The Waterpik Water Flosser is ideal for people with implants, crowns, bridges, orthodontics, dentures, and for those with diabetes or who are in periodontal maintenance.

The pulsating action of the water can help to clean under the bridge and around crowns where bacteria and food can get trapped.

You can use the Plaque Seeker Tip which provides additional plaque removal around all types of dental work. It has three thin tufts of bristles to access plaque trapped around crowns, bridges, veneers and fillings.

WaterPik can also be used with patients with orthodontic appliances such as adolescents with braces to remove plaque. The WaterPik Flosser with the Orthodontic Tip can remove 3 times as much plaque than a string floss threader.

For dentures and fixed plates, it is recommend to use the WaterPik implant denture tip. The hook-shaped tip makes it much easier to clean those hard to reach places.

Conclusion

You can use tap water in your WaterPik flosser, however if you have hard water you may have to clean your machine more often to remove hard water deposits.

You can use different types of water in your WaterPik flosser. But your choice of water may depend on your budget and personal preference.

If you think you are likely to swallow water whilst using your flosser, or you prefer your water to have a good taste you may prefer to buy water such as distilled or Reverse osmosis bottled water.

Consider using a WaterPik water flosser if you have trouble using dental floss due to reduced dexterity of your hands due to conditions such as arthritis. Or if you have difficulty cleaning braces or dental work like permanent or fixed bridges.

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