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Pure Ultrasonic Review

Reasonable performance all around, but can't compete with other more functional budget options
Pure Ultrasonic
Credit: Pure
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Price:   $40 List | $37.99 at Amazon
Pros:  Inexpensive
Cons:  Not much humidifying power, somewhat difficult to clean, somewhat clunky interface
Manufacturer:   Pure
By Max Mutter and Steven Tata  ⋅  Sep 26, 2017
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51
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#9 of 9
  • Humidifying Performance - 35% 4
  • Ease of Cleaning - 35% 5
  • User Friendliness - 15% 4
  • Operating Cost - 15% 9

Our Verdict

The Pure Ultrasonic is inexpensive, but that is really the only positive thing we can say about it. It was one of the weakest models we tested, provides some challenges in terms of general cleaning, and isn't particularly easy to use. If you're looking for a budget option we would definitely recommend taking a look at other models that offer better humidifying performance, are much easier to clean, and actually cost the same or a bit less.

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Price $40 List
$37.99 at Amazon
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Check Price at Amazon$55 List
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Pros InexpensiveExceptional output, low lifetime operating costsInexpensive, easy to clean, easy to useGood humidifying performanceInexpensive
Cons Not much humidifying power, somewhat difficult to clean, somewhat clunky interfaceConfusing user interface, prolonged cleaning processNot the most powerful, no advanced featuresSomewhat difficult to cleanNot suitable for larger rooms
Bottom Line Reasonable performance all around, but can't compete with other more functional budget optionsWith excellent performance ratings and low operating costs, this is one of our favorite modelsThe perfect budget model for smaller (<150 square foot) roomsGood for mid-sized bedrooms in arid climates, as long as you don't mind a little cleaning effortA decent choice for small bedrooms, but there are better options in the same price range
Rating Categories Pure Ultrasonic Levoit Classic 200 Honeywell HUL520B Everlasting Comfort... Crane Drop
Humidifying Performance (35%)
4.0
8.0
5.0
7.0
5.0
Ease Of Cleaning (35%)
5.0
7.0
8.0
5.0
6.0
User Friendliness (15%)
4.0
8.0
8.0
6.0
6.0
Operating Cost (15%)
9.0
6.0
10.0
8.0
8.0
Specs Pure Ultrasonic Levoit Classic 200 Honeywell HUL520B Everlasting Comfort... Crane Drop
Weight 1.8 lbs 3.5 lbs 3.0 lbs 3.3 lbs 4.5 lbs
Dimensions 10.9" x 9.2" x 6.9" 13.8" x 7.8" x 5.8" 8.5" x 8.5" x 9.5" 13.3" x 11.4" x 6.8" 8.6" x 13.4" x 8.6"
Tank Capacity 0.4 gallons 1.1 gallons 0.5 gallons 1.6 gallons 1.0 gallons
Humidification Technology Ultrasonic Ultrasonic Ultrasonic Ultrasonic Ultrasonic
Estimated Lifetime Cost $63 $99 $56 $98 $108
Estimated Annual Electricity Usage 21.9 kWh 87.6 kWh 43.8 kWh 65.7 kWh 87.6 kWh

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Pure Ultrasonic lacks some power and isn't particularly easy to clean, which makes it inferior to other models in the same price range. It landed towards the bottom of our overall scoresheet. We used a number of different tests to determine those overall scores as we discuss in the metrics below.

Performance Comparison



Humidifying Performance


The Pure Ultrasonic was one of the weakest models we tested, sharing the bottom score in our humidifying testing. It took a full 2.5 hours of running on high to get our 150 square foot testing room to the ideal 45% humidity. By comparison, other budget models achieved this in 2 hours or less, and cost less. If you want to spend less than $50 you're not going to get the sub half hours times of the top-shelf models, but you can do significantly better than the Pure Ultrasonic.

One upside is that the Pure Ultrasonic plateaued at 47.5% in our testing. This means if you use it in an average-sized bedroom it will most likely plateau at a good humidity level (eventually), and you don't really run the risk of over humidification if you forget to turn it off. However, you'll need to remember to turn it on well before bed if you want pleasant humidity when your head hits the pillow.

Ease of Cleaning


The Pure Ultrasonic was just about average in our ease of cleaning testing. The biggest issue is that the opening to the water tank is only 1.5 inches wide, so you'll need a long brush or some other tool if you need to scrub something off the inside of the tank. It does come with a cleaning brush, but it's not long enough to get all the nooks and crannies of the tank. The cord does unplug from the base unit, which is convenient for cleaning. The manual has step-by-step directions for completing a vinegar soak to get everything nice and clean. It took us about 15 minutes to do a thorough clean, not including the soak. This was pretty standard compared to other models.

The Pure Ultrasonicrequires a bit of effort to get clean, but the...
The Pure Ultrasonicrequires a bit of effort to get clean, but the process isn't particularly annoying.
Credit: Jenna Ammerman

User Friendliness


The Pure Ultrasonic has a fairly frustrating user interface. It has a single button that lets you scroll through its four settings (high and low, both with and without a night light on). However, there is no indicator to let you know what setting you're in, so you just have to memorize them. It is fairly clear by the sound of the machine whether you're on low or high, but it would be nice if the machine confirmed it visually.

The Pure Ultrasonic has only a single button to scroll through...
The Pure Ultrasonic has only a single button to scroll through settings with, and no display to let you know which setting is selected.
Credit: Jenna Ammerman

The tank is fairly high, so it is difficult to fill it directly from standard sinks. The opening is also fairly small at 1.75 inches wide, which can be a deceptively small target when you're pouring water. Other similar models have openings as large as 3.5 inches, which makes refilling much easier.

Operating Cost


The Pure Ultrasonic is quite inexpensive. It earned a very good score in our operating cost testing. It has a reasonable list price and uses just 0.005kWh of electricity per hour, the least of any of the models we tested. This resulted in an estimated lifetime cost of just $63.

Value


The Pure Ultrasonic isn't a great performer, but it has an affordable list price and reasonable long-term energy costs. On the other hand, other similarly-priced models perform a bit better all around and list for a lower price, providing much better value in this price range.

Conclusion


The Pure Ultrasonic is a decent, low price humidifier, but it just can't match the budget performance of other competitor models.

Max Mutter and Steven Tata