The Sharp KC-860U is a much better air purifier-humidifier combo than its predecessor, the Sharp KC-850U, thanks to its more powerful fan—one thing that is not an advantage of this company. For the price, this air purifier has a leading True HEPA filter as well as a large room humidifier attached. We are happy to deliver the Sharp KC-860U Review this time, so you can decide whether to buy it for $110 more than the Amazon’s Choice Sharp KC-850U or not.
In Breathe Quality, we have reviewed all air purifiers under these sections. Also, we guarantee that:
- We provide honest reviews (both pros and cons) so that everyone can make the best decisions.
- We do not (and never will) exaggerate one product just to let you click the links and buy that product blindly.
- Creative air filtration system
- Great humidifying function
- Smart features like Smart Sensor
- Really silent
- Better fan power
- Problem with Customer service
Sharp is the pioneer company that developed and increased the number of air purifiers with humidifying functions. This is also a direct attack on its many rivals from Korea, like Coway or Winix, and the company targets mainly the Asian region, where the humidifier feature is a great plus. In the U.S., Sharp is not quite popular, and this company is very cautious about establishing more air purifiers in the aggressively competitive air purifier market. But after the success of the Sharp KC-850U, we can hope the Sharp KC-860U will be great, too. Let’s find out in this Sharp KC-860U Review.
Other Sharp’s Air Purifier Reviews:
Sharp KC-860U Price
I’ve received both the Sharp KC-860U and Sharp KC-850U at the same time, and I’m really excited to test these air purifiers not only for their air purification mission but also as humidifiers. These air purifiers represent a major upgrade to Sharp’s old pure air purifiers, with a much more elegant design and unique specs that you won’t find on any other machines in this price range.
The Sharp KC-860U continues to debut the important humidifier function, along with a True HEPA filter that can last longer than normal ones on the market. So, of course, there are more budget versions of this air purifier, but if you need a humidifier, you must buy it for at least $40. Don’t forget that the humidifier filter on this Sharp KC-860U can last for 2 years, which is also longer than the common air filters.
The price of this Sharp KC-860U is very straightforward at $559, and it is $110 higher than its predecessor. This price puts the Sharp KC-860U deeper in the mid-range segment, which is only the beginning of the Sharp KC-850U and Sharp FP-A80UW. There is also the new flagship, the Sharp FX-J80UW to consider in this price range.
And yes, the Oransi Max and Austin Air HealthMate Plus Jr are cheaper, with very prominent air filters and features that, if not for the humidifier feature, they can match the performance of this Sharp KC-860U easily. You can also find the Blueair Classic 405, Rabbit Air MinusA2 or Alen BreatheSmart FIT50 as the most popular alternatives for the Sharp KC-860U.
We also notice the presence of the Dyson Pure Cool Tower and Dyson Pure Cool Link in the same price range. These air purifiers, besides having a true HEPA filter, have amazing cooling fan power to help you survive the summerpurifiers, besides having a true HEPA filter, have amazing cooling fan power to help you survive the summer. The Dyson Pure Hot+Cool, with a little bit higher cost, will come with the heating power as well.
Remember that the price can drop a lot depending on when you click on our deal below.
Related post: Best air purifier 2023.
Sharp KC-860U Design and Size
The Sharp KC-860U is true to its unintentional theme of finding internal strength and beauty because, on the outside, this isn’t a very pretty or strong air purifier. It feels more cheaply made than it looks. This is thanks to the artfully deceptive flat plastic design on the body cover and its small depth, which make this Sharp KC-860U quite weak.
Putting the Sharp KC-850U aside, I can easily spot many similarities. All edges are rounded, and I would hardly call it beautiful. At least, despite the plastic body, the slight curve might have saved this air purifier from its now unsightly blemish.
The Sharp KC-860U is 25 inches in height and 16 inches wide. While following the same design concept as its predecessor, this air purifier is bigger than its brother. With such a broad size and small base, the Sharp KC-860U is quite unstable, and you should keep it away from your children as far as possible.
On the front, we no longer see the rough surface as featured in the Sharp KC-850U. Instead, the Sharp KC-860U has a flat surface, and there is only one white color option for this device. In my opinion, the white color is the best option for a full-plastic air purifier, and I find this Sharp KC-860U a bit more beautiful than the previous model. The front monitor is also a little bit different with a longer display, but I don’t find the extra length particularly special. It is not good-looking, either.
You will still have the water tank on a tray, located beside the air purifier. Of course, you can easily remove it from the Sharp KC-860U without removing the air filters inside. Just remember to securely tighten the tank cap before putting it back on again.
The Sharp KC-860U also features the traditional bottom-to-top air filtration system, which is mainly available in all air purifiers of the Japanese brand. The intake air grill is from the back and has perforated holes to act as a pre-filter that captures large objects of pollutants. On top of this air purifier, you can find the outlet air grill, where you can enjoy the fresh air.
The top control panel is nearly the same as with the Sharp KC-850U and is packed with lots of function buttons.
This Sharp KC-860U weighs 26 lbs, which can be even heavier with a full 1.14 gallons of water. There are 2 handles for each side, but it doesn’t help ease the pain of moving this air purifier much.
Related post: Best air purifiers for bedroom.
Sharp KC-860U Filters
To decide the performance of one air purifier, we usually check the air filtration process, which is the heart of the air purifier, as well as what air filter types are used. The Sharp KC-860U features a very unique humidifying filter along with the traditional 3-stage air purification system described below.
- Activated Carbon filter – It helps reduce pet odors and smoke, as well as some common household chemicals.
- True HEPA filter – The True HEPA Filter captures 99.97% of as small as 0.3 microns of particles like pollen, dust, pet dander, smoke, germs, bacteria, viruses, odors, mold, and fungus.
- Plasmacluster Technology – This technology is one kind of ionizer, which can further reduce the amount of pollutants. Can be switched on/off.
The humidifier part of this Sharp KC-860U is exactly like the previous model, with three main parts: a tray, a humidifier filter, and a water tank. It works really well, and I can feel the change in humidity inside my room during the testing period. It is quite great, and I like it just the same as the Sharp KC-850U.
For the air-purifying function, the Sharp KC-860U is pretty formidable, with high-quality air filters. Both the Activated Carbon filter and True HEPA filter of this air purifier can last for up to 5 years without replacing, a lifetime that many other brands like Winix or Levoit only dream of. Don’t forget that the True HEPA filter of this company is coated with an antimicrobial layer, which can help prevent the growth of mold spores and bacteria inside your HEPA filter.
But the most interesting part of this air purifier is the Plasmacluster technology, which resembles the PlasmaWave feature in Winix a lot. As the exclusive technology of Sharp, this function is actually an ionizer, which emits both negative and positive ions to give water in the air a positive charge and oxygen a negative charge. Through plasma discharge, in which voltage is applied to the discharge electrode, these ions will bond on the surface of airborne viruses and other substances and change them into OH radicals. This process is called “hydroxyls form”, and the Plasmacluster technology can decompose the protein and suppress the activity of viruses, mold spores, and bacteria. The result of this process is water (H₂O), which is returned to the air.
Source: Sharp website
The test of this Sharp KC-860U was made carefully. First, I set up a room of 200 square feet and let the Sharp KC-860U run for a whole hour. To compare the performance of this air purifier, I used the Oransi Max, Austin Air HealthMate Plus Jr, Rabbit Air MinusA2 and even the famous Austin Air HealthMate. The Sharp KC-860U finished the test with a high efficiency of 99.95% for capturing any particles as small as 0.3 microns. What a great result!
The air filter cost of this Sharp KC-860U is higher than the previous model, at up to $109 for the True HEPA filter (named FZ-C150HFU). But you should remember that this HEPA filter can last for 5 years, which results in only $22 for the annual filter cost. I believe the air filter cost of the Sharp is among the best in the world of air purifiers.
Related post: Best air purifiers for allergies.
Sharp KC-860U Room Coverage
Sharp is not a great brand for having large room air purifiers. The Sharp KC-860U is not much better than its brother and can only clean a room of 340 square feet. This room size is a lot smaller than even the $200 devices, like the Honeywell HPA300 or the Blue Pure 211.
The ACH of Sharp KC-860U is 4X. With the best air changes per hour rating, this air purifier can clean your room every 15 minutes.
Related post: Best large room air purifiers.
Sharp KC-860U Sound
This is where the Sharp KC-860U shines. Its noise level is really, really quiet. With the lowest noise level of only 19 decibels, this air purifier is even quieter than the Ultra Quiet Rabbit Air MinusA2. To make it easy for you to measure, 19 decibels is even lower than the noise level of rustling leaves.
Upon switching to the highest setting, also with the maximum fan speed for the humidifier, this Sharp KC-860U is like being on a different level. The noise level is now about 62 decibels (dB), and you can’t ignore the sound from this air purifier. This is exactly the noise level of the air conditioning unit. Moreover, I’ve seen many reviews about the crackling noise from the Plasmacluster of this unit. However, I’ve never experienced such an annoying noise, and I will update this content as soon as I find anything uncommon.
If you want to use this air purifier in silence, you should turn off the humidifier whenever possible.
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Sharp KC-860U Power Consumption
One of our most FAQs is “Do air purifiers use a lot of energy?” In fact, air purifiers must be used for a long time to be efficient. And power consumption is one important criterion for reviewing how much energy this air purifier will consume.
The Sharp KC-860U is Energy Star rated, and it will only run at 4.8 watts on the lowest setting. But, just like the Sharp KC-850U, this combo air purifier-humidifier will consume a rated power of 87 watts plus 50 watts for the humidifier part, for a total of 137 watts. This is the very high power consumption, and if you care about the annual energy cost, you should turn off the humidifier feature or buy another saving air purifier, like the Rabbit Air MinusA2 or Alen BreatheSmart 45i.
If you run the Sharp KC-860U 8 hours per day as an air purifier alone, you need to pay $0.2 to $31 each year. And with the humidifier function, you must pay an additional $0.3 to $18 annually. While the cost is higher than normal, it is just a small fee for using two electronic appliances in only one unit.
Related post: Best air purifiers for pets.
Sharp KC-860U Additional Features
The humidifier function is really a selling point of this Sharp KC-860U. With a more powerful fan, this air purifier can deliver the necessary humidity for a much larger room and still save you from many dry air problems. You can avoid a bloody nose, cracked lips, itchy skin, an irritated throat, and even some allergies by using the humidifying function of this Sharp KC-860U often.
As an air purifier, the Sharp KC-860U is great with the Smart Sensor, an amazing function that can tell us exactly the indoor air quality via a LED indicator on the front monitor. If you activate the auto mode, this Sharp KC-860U can automatically adjust the fan power to match the needs of the air cleaning process. For example, if the air quality is poor, the Sharp KC-860U will run at its highest fan speed to clean the room faster, and vice versa.
Just like the Sharp KC-850U, it will indicate the humidity level as well as warn you whenever the water tank needs to be refilled.
There are many questions about “Is there a quick clean mode for this Sharp KC-860U?” Luckily, yes, and with only one button press, the Sharp KC-860U will continuously discharge strong airflow cycles and release the high-density Plasmacluster ions to remove the airborne allergens as they are drawn through the filter systems.
You still have the filter replacement indicator to remind us when we need a new layer of air filter.
Sharp KC-860U Customer Service
Sharp is a huge brand; of course it is. But this brand is not as popular in the U.S. market as it is in the rest of the world. Yes, marketing is one aspect of this unpopularity, but it also implies a difficulty in finding good customer service if you live in the United States.
But don’t worry, as the U.S. subsidiary of Sharp is quite active and would like to hear from you. You can reach its customer service toll-free at 800-237-4277 or via email through the “Product Support” page. Sharp’s customer service is available to you 24/7, every day.
However, for air purifiers, the company only provides a 1-year warranty. For most situations, I believe this warranty is enough to cover your device.
The Sharp KC-860U is a good upgrade to the previous Sharp KC-850U for a medium-sized room. The humidifier is great, and you will experience the high-quality air filters from this air purifier. However, if you don’t need the humidifying function, you should buy the Sharp FX-J80UW or Sharp FP-A80UW instead.
Sharp KC-860U Air Purifier: Trusted Review in 2023
Sharp KC-860U Reviews and Specs (Air Purifier Trusted Reviews in 2023). ✓ Cleaning Power: True HEPA ✓ Plasmacluster ✓ Humidifier ✓ Value: 4/5 ✓Certified Review.
Product Brand: Sharp
Product Currency: USD
Product Price: 559
Product In-Stock: https://schema.org/InStock
$100 for just a better fan power, do you really want to pay much for the upgraded Sharp KC-860U?