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Philips Sonicare Flexcare+

Est. $120
Reviewed
February 2014
by ConsumerSearch
Philips Sonicare FlexCare+

Pros
  • Cleans teeth well
  • Long battery life
  • Lightweight and ergonomic
Cons
  • Not durable

Bottom line

The Philips Sonicare Flexcare+ does an excellent job of cleaning teeth and is easy to use. It's loaded with user-friendly features, but Sonicare models in general are not as competitively priced as other brands. Furthermore, the toothbrush isn't as durable as other options in this price range. If you like the look or specific features of this brush, it's a good choice, but possibly not the best option all around. For an all-around winner, our best-reviewed pick, the Oral-B ProfessionalCare SmartSeries 5000 with SmartGuide (Est. $98), is a great option.

Performance

Easy access to hard-to-reach areas. Reviewers say the Sonicare Flexcare+ does an excellent job of cleaning teeth. It relies on rapid side-to-side vibrations to clean teeth and provides up to 31,000 brush strokes per minute. The toothbrush has five brushing modes: clean, sensitive, massage, refresh and gum care. In addition to a standard two-minute timer, the Flexcare+ also has a one-minute and a three-minute timer. Quality performance is key when it comes to electric toothbrushes, and the Flexcare+ gets the approval of dentists and users alike. In a recent study, dental professionals preferred the Sonicare Flexcare+ over the Oral-B Triumph for its ability to access hard-to-reach areas. The study, however, was sponsored by Philips Oral Healthcare.

Ease of use

User-friendly. Owners say the Flexcare+ is easy to use and clean. Users especially appreciate the slim handle and pop-on brush heads that don't harbor "gunk" like older screw-on brush heads. Users also like the interval timer that lets you know when to switch to a different area of the mouth. One user warns, however, "... make sure the toothbrush is in your mouth before turning it on. As I found out, a toothbrush this powerful can and will spray toothpaste everywhere." It is worth noting that this model has raised buttons, which the Sonicare DiamondClean lacks. The flat panel makes the buttons harder to use.

Features

Packed with convenient features. The toothbrush is lightweight and comes with a travel case and multi-voltage travel charger, making it easy to travel with. It includes five brushing modes including a standard clean and shorter touch-up clean, plus gum care, massage, and sensitive settings. Users also like the UV sanitizer -- a feature that's notably absent from the pricier Sonicare DiamondClean. Overall, this brush is well-equipped with features that owners find useful.

Cost of ownership

Short life span. Editors saw several complaints of product failure for the Philips Sonicare Flexcare+, but most of them occurred while the product was still under warranty. Owners say Philips has great customer service and replaces defective toothbrushes quickly. At about $8 each, replacement brush heads are comparable to other brands' and models' replacements.

Where To Buy
Philips Sonicare HX6972/10 FlexCare Plus Rechargeable Electric Toothbrush

 (1,207 reviews)
Buy new: $189.99   2 New from $200.90

 
Featured StoresStore RatingNotesTotal Price
Sears MarketplaceSears Marketplace rated 3.15 (1347 reviews)1,347 store reviewsIn Stock. $199.95
eBayeBay rated 3.83 (1281 reviews)1,281 store reviewsIn Stock. Buy it new & now! with eBay Buyer Protection$289.95
 

Our Sources

1. ConsumerReports.org

ConsumerReports.org recommends four toothbrushes, based on their plaque removal, ease of use, comfort and convenience. The Philips Sonicare Flexcare+ is the highest reviewed. ConsumerReports.org is a highly reputable source, and this report is very recently updated, adding to its reliability.

Review: Toothbrushes, Editors of ConsumerReports.org, February 2014

2. Amazon.com

More than 1,100 owners at Amazon.com give the Sonicare Flexcare+ an overall rating of 4.2 out of 5 stars. Users say it's expensive but worth the investment. It cleans well, has a long battery life and is easy to use. Several reviewers do note some reliability issues, though they say Sonicare customer service is responsive.

Review: Philips Sonicare HX6972 FlexCare Plus Rechargeable Electric Toothbrush, Contributors to Amazon.com, As of March 2014

3. 89th General Session of the IADR

In a study sponsored by Philips Oral Healthcare, the majority of 267 participating dental professionals prefer the Philips Sonicare Flexcare+ to the Oral-B Triumph (the predecessor to the Oral-B ProfessionalCare SmartSeries and the Oral-B Professional Healthy Clean Precision series). Participants say the Sonicare is easy to use and accesses hard-to-reach areas.

Review: Evaluation of User Preferences for Power Toothbrushes in Dental Professionals, J. Defenbaugh, et al., March 17, 2011

4. The Independent

Hilpern relies heavily on manufacturer's literature in her roundup of the 10 best electric toothbrushes. She likes the Flexcare+'s start-up program -- which increases power over the first 14 uses -- and is great for newcomers to electric toothbrushes.

Review: The 10 Best Electric Toothbrushes, Kate Hilpern, April 8, 2013

5. DentalHA.com

This dental practice website references another source in recommending the best electric toothbrushes. The reviewer selects the Philips Sonicare Flexcare+ rechargeable toothbrush because it has the best features of any electric toothbrush on the market, including its high speed, a built-in timer and a UV sanitizer to keep germs away.

Review: Electric Toothbrush Reviews, Marcus Finley, 2012

Electric Toothbrushes Runners Up:

Philips Sonicare Flexcare+ Est. $120

4 picks including: Amazon.com, The Independent…

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Oral-B Pulsonic Est. $40

3 picks including: Amazon.com, Journal of Clinical Dentistry…

Philips Sonicare AirFloss Est. $80

2 picks including: Amazon.com, Walmart.com…

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