2020 UV Steriliser Comparison

1. Introduction

It’s been 3 years since the last UV Steriliser Comparison Review, and it’s time for an update! This round, there will be five tabletop UV Sterilisers from three brands, plus a short overview of a new brand that is not in this comparison. 

2. General Overview

The official pricing is taken from the authorised distributors’ pages. You can find better deals at Mummys Market baby fairs that are held a few times throughout the year. Prices range from $199 to $429 on sale.

  • Haenim [Warranty Form]
    – 5 year warranty on UVC LED lamps
    – 2 year standard warranty that starts from the baby’s DOB, date of purchase or delivery, whichever is later).
    – Manufactured in South Korea. Place of manuafacture listed on website, packaging and product.

  • Lollababy [Warranty Form]
    – 1-year warranty on material and workmanship defects that exist at the time of manufacture.
    – 2-year free UV lamp replacement service
    – Manufactured in China. Place of manufacture is not listed anywhere, but Lollababy replied via Instagram that it is made in China and tested in Singapore.

  • LoveAmme [Warranty Form]
    1-year
    warranty for defects on any part of the that is defective except for tubes, blades, cups, knobs, handles, cover and glass, and other parts subject to wear and tear.
    – Manufactured in China. Place of manufacture is listed on their product but not on their website or packaging.

Safety Tests:

All brands have been tested by TUV SUD to be effective at killing 99.9% of viruses and bacteria.For Haenim, it has passed tests from Korea Testing and Research Institute in addition to TUV SUD in Singapore.

Accessories

  • Haenim 4G+ Smart Classic
    – Detailed warranty instructions provided 
    – Comes with a water tray to collect excess water and prevent water stains in addition to two stainless steel racks

  • Haenim 3G+ Smart View
    – Detailed warranty instructions provided
    – Comes with a stainless steel rack and a basket

  • Lollababy
    – Power cable cannot be detached
    – Sticker on top of the specifications label reminds users to register warranty for free 2-year lamp replacement service
    – Comes with a stainless steel basket

  • LoveAmme LoveClean Compact
    – Has a power cable that cannot be detached. 
    – Comes with a stainless steel basket 

  • LoveAmme LoveClean Pro
    – Comes with a stainless steel rack and basket

Exterior

  • Haenim 4G+ Smart Classic
    – No visible defects observed
    – Fingerprints are not obvious due to the colour and finishing

  • Haenim 3G+ Smart View 
    – No visible defects observed
    – Fingerprints are not obvious due to the colour and finishing

  • Lollababy
    – No visible defects observed
    – Fingerprints are not obvious due to the colour

  • LoveAmme LoveClean Compact
    – Obvious scratch at the back
    – Badly welded stainless steel basket
    – Fingerprints remain visible on the set due to the colour

  • LoveAmme LoveClean Pro
    – Poor moulding with plastic fibres sticking out 
    – Rough edges around the set

Best QC: Haenim, Lollababy
Worst QC: LoveAmme

Interior

All the UV sterilisers use SS304 stainless steel for its interior. SS304 is considered food grade. Both Haenim sterilisers have identical interiors.

  • Haenim 4G+ Smart Classic
    – Smooth stainless steel interior for easier maintenance and efficient sterilising. Smooth surfaces allow the UV rays to reflect without causing distortion
    – Water tray collects stray water droplets and minimises water stains
  • Haenim 3G+ Smart View 
    – Smooth stainless steel interior for easier maintenance and efficient sterilising. Smooth surfaces allow the UV rays to reflect without causing distortion
 
  • Lollababy
    – Textured bottom with raised lines and upper protective plate distorts the reflection of UV rays leading to possible blind spots. 
    – Inner filter cover cannot be removed
 
  • LoveAmme LoveClean Compact
    – Textured bottom with raised lines and upper protective grille distorts the reflection of UV rays leading to possible blind spots.
 
  • LoveAmme LoveClean Pro
    – Smooth interior but the protective grille may affect reflection of UV rays.
Easiest to Clean: Haenim 4G+ Smart Classic
Easy to Clean: Haenim 3G+ Smart View, LoveAmme LoveClean Compact, LoveAmme LoveClean Pro
Hardest to Clean: Lollababy 

3. Features

All the sterilisers come with basic Auto, Dry, Sterilise and Storage functions but both Haenim models have extra features.

  • Haenim 4G+ Smart Classic
    – Turbo mode with extra drying power
    – Extra Smart function that monitors temperature changes over 24 hours and runs automatically and activates 1 min each of sterilising and ventilation when the door is opened and closed.
    – Clean function calculates usage and alerts you when it is time to clean the steriliser.

  • Haenim 3G+ Smart View 
    – Turbo mode with extra drying power
     
  • Lollababy
    – Basic auto, dry, sterilise and storage functions

  • LoveAmme LoveClean Compact
    – Longest Auto mode at 41 minutes
    – Basic auto, dry, sterilise and storage functions. 

  • LoveAmme LoveClean Pro
    – Basic auto, dry, sterilise and storage functions 
Most Functions: Haenim 4G+ Smart Classic
Least Functions: Lollababy, LoveAmme

UV Lamps & Maintenance

UV sterilisers typically use standard UV lamps that need to be replaced regularly. Haenim has upgraded to UVC LED lamps that do not need to be replaced, with a 5-year warranty for the UVC LED lamps in case anything happens. 

  • Haenim 4G+ Smart Classic
    – 9 UVC LED lamps
    – Unobstructed UV rays
 
  • Haenim 3G+ Smart View 
    – 9 UVC LED lamps
    – Unobstructed UV rays 
 
  • Lollababy
    – Two UV lamps
    – UV rays obstructed by protective plate
    – Difficult to clean the underside of the plate as it cannot be dismantled 
    – UV lamps to be sent back to manufacturer for replacement when an error is displayed. However, according to Philips, the lamps should be replaced yearly
 
  • LoveAmme LoveClean Compact
    – Single UV lamp
    – UV rays obstructed by protective plate
    – Difficult to clean the underside of the protective plate unless it is removed *risk of injury*
    – The reflective cover needs to be pried open in order to replace the UV lamps. Please be careful as there is a risk of cutting yourself or scratching the appliance. [Video]
 
  • LoveAmme LoveClean Pro
    – Two UV lamps
    – UV rays obstructed by grilles
Easiest Maintenance: Haenim (no replacement required)
Most Complicated Maintenance: Lollababy (it’s a tough choice between risking sliced fingers or the inconvenience of sending it back to the distributor

Door Opening

A bigger opening gives you better access to the steriliser. Both Haenim sterilisers have the widest opening at 180° rightward while the Lollababy has the narrowest opening at 70° upward. 

Widest door opening: Haenim
Narrowest door opening: Lollababy

Display

All the sterilisers feature a digital display panel that show the remaining time, but both Haenim and LoveAmme LoveClean Pro also display the temperature. 

  • Haenim 4G+ Smart Classic
    – Largest display – both the remaining time and temperature can be seen from a distance away
    – Inbuilt temperature control prevents the steriliser from exceeding 45°C so items will not be too hot to touch after sterilising
 
  • Haenim 3G+ Smart View 
    – Small digital display but the remaining time and temperature are in two different colours for easy differentiation
    – Inbuilt temperature control prevents the steriliser from exceeding 45°C so items will not be too hot to touch after sterilising
 
  • Lollababy
    – Display is on the top so you need to walk right up to the steriliser to know how much time is left
 
  • LoveAmme LoveClean Compact
    – Display can be viewed without having to go right up to the steriliser 
 
  • LoveAmme LoveClean Pro
    – Display can be viewed without having to go right up to the steriliser 
    – Remaining time and temperature are in the same colour
Best Display: Haenim 4G+ Smart Classic 
Worst Display: Lollababy

Filters & Vents

The purpose of a filter is to prevent dust from entering the steriliser. As such, it should be fine enough in order to be effective. Depending on the model, you will need to replace the cotton filters every 3-6 months. 

  • Haenim 4G+ Smart Classic
    – Finely woven nylon microfibre filters
    – Wash under running water monthly
 
  • Haenim 3G+ Smart View 
    – Finely woven nylon microfibre filters
    – Wash under running water monthly
 
  • Lollababy
    – Cotton filter
    = Replace cotton filter every 3 to 6 months, or “when it turns black”.
    – Replacement filter cotton can be purchased through its website.
 
  • LoveAmme LoveClean Compact
    – Cotton filter
    – Replace cotton filter every 3 to 6 months
    No option to purchase filter on both its official website or distributor’s website.
 
  • LoveAmme LoveClean Pro
    – Mesh filter
    – Wash under running water monthly
    = Large gaps that are wide enough for small insects to pass through (refer to photos)
Best filter: Haenim
Worst filter: LoveAmme LoveClean Pro (large ineffective filter), LoveAmme LoveClean Compact (nowhere to buy filter)

Ventilation

Behind the filters are air vents that aid in circulating the air within the steriliser. The bigger the air vent and fans, the better the air circulation.

  • Haenim
    – Both sterilisers feature a heated air vent for inflow on the left and ventilation vent on the right for outflow. The fans are visible from the back.
 
  • Lollababy 
    – Single air vent on the edges and an exhaust cover on the top.
 
  • LoveAmme
    Both sterilisers have single air vents at the back.
Best Ventilation: Haenim
Worst Ventilation: Lollababy (because its ventilation doesn’t seem to be working if you refer to the Temperature test)

4. Tests

Capacity Test

The user manuals usually state that the sterilisers are able to hold a certain number of bottles. Do note that it refers to the bottom part of the bottle without the accessories (teats, cap, collar) which will need to be spaced out when sterilising as well. 

  • Haenim 4G+ Smart Classic
    – Large capacity
    – Stainless steel rack can be removed to accommodate larger objects
 
  • Haenim 3G+ Smart View 
    – Large capacity
    – Stainless steel rack can be removed to accommodate larger objects
 
  • Lollababy
    – Small and short
    – Cannot fit standard sized water bottles for children
 
  • LoveAmme LoveClean Compact
    – Small and short
    – Cannot fit standard sized water bottles for children
 
  • LoveAmme LoveClean Pro
    – Stainless steel rack can be removed to accommodate larger objects
Largest Capacity: Haenim 
Smallest Capacity: Lollababy and LoveAmme LoveClean Compact

Temperature Test

All the UV sterilisers in this comparison use PTC heaters. In the temperature test, I measured the temperature of the hot air produced by each steriliser after 30 minutes in Auto mode. Although the duration of Auto modes differ, I chose 30 minutes as that is the length of the shortest Auto Mode. 

  • Lollababy clocked the highest temperature at 58.2°C, more than 16.8°C difference from Haenim 4G+ Smart Classic.  
  • Both Haenim models have a low heat drying function that ensures the heater stops at 45°C to prevent damage to the items placed inside.
Highest Temperature: Lollababy (58.2°C)
Lowest Temperature: Haenim 4G+ Smart Classic (41.4°C)
 
The highest temperature recorded by Lollababy in a separate test was 62.3°C.
 

Bottle Test

Due to the high temperature, the bottle that was retrieved from the Lollababy steriliser was hot to squeeze and I had to put it back. The purpose of using a UV steriliser is to zap germs via the UV lamp. If it’s that hot, you might as well use a steam steriliser.

5. Customer Service/Information

What entails excellent customer service? To me, it’s making sure that customers are able to find important information without having to call or message. Prompt replies to social media enquiries (within 24 hours on a working day) is a standard to me, because in emergency cases like equipment breakdown, you wouldn’t want to be kept waiting.  

Availability of Information

 
 
  • LoveAmme [Website] [Facebook] [Instagram]
    – Prompt replies on social media, new posts every 4-5 days
    – There’s a mobile number provided on their Facebook page for urgent enquiries.

Time taken from Order to Delivery

  • Haenim
    – 4G+ Smart Classic ordered on 27th July, received 29th July (2 days) 
    – 3G+ Smart View ordered on 4th August, received 6th August (2 days)
    Urgent courier option available at $15
 
  • LoveAmme
    – LoveClean Compact ordered on 23rd May, delivered on 6th June (14 days)
    – LoveClean Pro ordered on 23rd May, received on 19th June (25 days)
    – No updates even after a week, only replied when chaser messages were sent

6. Personal Observations

After comparing multiple brands over two reviews, I have made a few observations.

  • Replacement of UV lamps should be kept fuss-free for users, who are likely to be busy parents.  Lollababy needs to be sent back to the distributor when the UV lamps are due for replacement (yearly, as that’s the lifespan of UV lamps). LoveAmme LoveClean Pro needs to be unscrewed while LoveAmme LoveClean Compact and Lunavie that have the same design poses a danger of cutting the user with its sharp plates and/or damaging the steriliser in the process.
  • Haenim has proven again why it remains popular among parents. With its large capacity, upgraded feature to UVC LED lamps that require no maintenance and large filters, it’s not hard to see why. It’s in use in KKH wards as well. I’ve been using Haenim since 2015. I’m still using my 3rd Gen with Bluetooth set to zap the kids’ water bottles and masks.  

If you’re looking for something value-for-money with long mileage, there’s no other choice in my opinion.