SOLVED: How to remove a stuck Oral-B toothbrush head

Braun Oral-B electric toothbrushes are great for keeping your teeth clean, but what happens if you can't pull the head off to replace it? The head on one of ours simply refused to budge, until we pulled it so hard that the head itself came apart - revealing the springs and pins of its inner workings.

We were initially a bit confused by this; maybe the toothbrush heads were different to the usual sort. The toothbrush head, pictured here after removal, had nothing in it but a bit of grime from years of use. And yes, it had been a couple of years, and we had changed the head once at most.

A phone call to the Braun service centre quickly put matters straight. We had indeed pulled the toothbrush head apart, and the mechanism part had clearly fused itself to the metal shaft that sticks out of the toothbrush body. The technician said that we should replace the head every few months (which we knew, but didn't stick to), but also recommended that we remove the head after every use to keep it properly clean. She said that the cement-like gunk that toothpaste creates can easily stick the parts together. Indeed! Well, we were told to try soaking the toothbrush in mildly soapy boiling water for a bit, then to try pulling the head innards off.

After a bit of soaking in soapy boiling water, we grabbed the head with pliers and pulled - and it came off! We were then able to slot a new, standard head on, and all was finally well.

Of course, we could have avoided all this palaver if we'd read the instructions more carefully! They state quite clearly, "After use, rinse the brush head for several seconds under running water with the handle switched on. Then switch off the handle and remove the brush head. Rinse both parts separately under running water and wipe them dry."


by Mary on 22 August 2020 Reply
Unbelievable! Thank you so much for posting this story; my partner and I laughed so hard because the exact same thing happened to him. He'd pulled so hard that he'd exposed the inside springs etc. which I told him couldn't be right. We're boiling the water now ...
by Susan Ferguson on 17 August 2020 Reply
Thank you, thank you!!! This has helped so much!
on 23 September 2019 Reply
Great! I put it in boiling water a minute or two and it pulled right off- thanks!
by Cherie on 22 June 2018 Reply
Followed the instructions. Soaked toothbrush in very hot soapy water. Let it soak for several minutes and the tooth brush came right off
by Istvan on 11 February 2018 Reply
I followed your instructions and finally managed to pull it apart but broke the very base of the plastic. It vibrates but not rotates.

This is a worthless crap product designed to rip off customers.

by Charles D. Greene on 26 January 2018 Reply
Running hot water on the unit then pull with a pliers got mine off.Yes there is scale buildup inside on the shaft and in the inside of the head. Take it apart at least every week to

clean it.

by wingless on 11 December 2017 Reply
Great info!!! The head was stuck on mine, so I soaked the head in my heated ultrasonic cleaner until it pulled off normally. A utility knife blade was used to scrape the stainless shaft clean. Now it comes on and off normally.
by Betty Franse on 02 December 2017 Reply
HOW about changing the battery - it is as hard to figure out - Most women don't have the strength to get the cover off.
by John Swindells on 05 December 2017 Reply
Are you referring to the sort that takes a couple of AA batteries inside, Betty? It can be really hard to get the cover off one of those, especially if a bit of limescale has built up! I don't have any recommendations - you just need to squeeze and pull hard.
by Bobby on 19 November 2017 Reply
I needed to replace the head and can't get the new one to work. When any pressure put on it, it

stops. Very frustrating. 5 for a pack of 2 heads.

by John Swindells on 05 December 2017 Reply
I'd take that as a sign to get a new toothbrush. I recently dropped my model (around 5 years old) and it stopped working. The new one, a basic Vitality model, is so much better!
by Lizzie on 16 August 2017 Reply
THANKS for your site! What a RELIEF.
by Jan Hurst on 02 August 2017 Reply
Thank you for all the tips and tricks! I was able to solve my problem easily with your help.
by Gayle on 20 July 2017 Reply
I had the same problem with my Oral B Complete Action toothbrush to remove the head. I just got mine off with a knife, yes, a knife! You will have to have a flat head, like screwing driver and push up on the Neck, above the pin, and give it a couple of pushes, then I finally got it off!

Hope this can help you and others!

by MS on 01 June 2017 Reply
Thanks - That worked for me. I change the brush heads every couple of months, so was surprised it was a problem. This time (after removal with the hot water treatment), I noticed some fine black corrosion on the metal shaft - I removed that with an emery board before a final clean and a new brush head.
by Tim Lund on 12 February 2017 Reply
Makes it a lot easier if you twist the head as it is held on by two pegs inside.
by Ros on 14 May 2017 Reply
Hi. My son tried to help me because I didn't know how to take the head off and he twisted so that the plastic bit at the top of the main part of the equipment is slightly raised. We did the soaking thing then and I pulled the old head off. I have put the new head on, but it won't now start. I have charged it. Any ideas? Do you think the vigorous twisting has broken it?
by John Swindells on 14 May 2017 Reply
I suppose that you could damage the electrical connections by too much twisting. If you're sure that it's charged up and it still won't start, then it's probably broken beyond repair.
by Chandra on 14 January 2017 Reply
It worked! Thank you.
by Marcia O on 11 January 2017 Reply
I was looking for a button to release the old head and couldn't find one. I boiled water and put dish soap in and soaked it for about 3 minutes and used pliers to pull off the old head. Thank you.
by Susan on 30 December 2016 Reply
Yay! This worked! I thought I was going to have to throw the whole brush away and start over. Thank you!!
by Jerry Specht on 24 November 2016 Reply
This worked for me too! I stuck the just head end into a pot of boiling water. It took about 2-3 minutes for it to get to a state where I could pull it off (with pliers). (Don't worry about the old head -- you're just going to be throwing out anyway.)
by RMW on 21 October 2016 Reply
Thanks! I bought my brush in twin set with a friend so did not get the instructions! I hope this helps me remove my old brush head without damage!...
by Shareen on 09 October 2016 Reply
Im so glad you posted this cause i looked on their site and nowhere do they say HOW to take it off-just says to take it they even know how to write manuals?! Thanks again!
by dave shultz on 25 September 2016 Reply
Thanks for the info - I thought I alone held the title of laziest person known to humankind - so happy to see I'm in good company
by Ali on 16 September 2016 Reply
Thank you, worked a treat. I used plain boiling hot water from the kettle, only took about a minute at the most.
by susan brown on 11 May 2016 Reply
OMG!! Thank you for this info. Looked for over an hour, no help looking everywhere on you tube. My husky took it off the charger and chew the top of the brush. Couldn't figure out how to take the rest of the head off. I will try your method. I was getting so frustrated. Thank you again.
by Anita on 23 April 2016 Reply
The best way is to remember to take it off once a week.
by John Swindells on 23 April 2016 Reply
You're absolutely right!
by Jeannette on 26 March 2016 Reply
I can't get the head off my toothbrush, and there isn't a button to push! Help!
by John Swindells on 26 March 2016 Reply
There isn't a button to push, Jeanette. You need to soak the head end of the toothbrush for ten minutes or so, and pull it off!
by Lilly Smith on 23 March 2016 Reply
OH MY GOSH! thank you so much!!!
by Brian on 20 March 2016 Reply
Done it! Almost given up, but yes put lt head down in a mug of hot soapy water & then with a thin tea knife gently lever it of.
by John Swindells on 20 March 2016 Reply
Well done! They can be a bit stubborn if left on too long.
by Michael P. on 28 January 2016 Reply
The other possible problem is that there are a lot of counterfeit Oral B brush heads being sold, including on Amazon--and they don't fit properly on the power base unit. I did not know about the issue until I read some reviews on Amazon. I just bought a pack of 8 Oral B replacement heads from As soon as I got them, I tested one. The minute I put it on, I knew I was in trouble due to the tight fit. Sure enough it would not budge: I had to use a pliers and a hack saw to get it off. Thank goodness, I did not destroy the base. I will be returning these. I don't want to say that Costco is selling a counterfeit product, but I sure don't think it should be so hard to remove the head. I'm not sure where to turn next.
by John on 21 January 2017 Reply
I bought brush heads that do not stay on. When you start brushing the head comes off in your mouth.
by Jim on 19 May 2018 Reply
I have the same problem did you figure it out?
by Howard on 28 November 2015 Reply
Excellent advice

Thank you very much

by Bob Lowe on 21 November 2015 Reply
No help in the instructions that came with the thing, except something about a 'special tool'?
by Margaret on 11 August 2015 Reply
Have only had toothbrush for 1 month but don't know how to get it off to clean it, the instructions only tell how to remove the brush head but my brush is connected in one piece to the charger, how do I remove it ?
by Cheryll on 25 February 2015 Reply
Yes, hot soapy water works. First I soaked the brush head overnight in peroxide. The next day I put It in boiling soapy water. After about a half hour I was able to pop the head off without pliers. Then I soaked the exposed mechanical head in white vinegar overnight to get all the residue off. Looks like new! Thanks for the solution.
by DJ on 06 September 2014 Reply
I forgot to mention that I'm in Clermont, Florida near Disney World. There are several British families living in my neighborhood. A lot of them come to this area on vacation and then decide to move here. My British lawn guy says it's because of the weather.
by DJ on 06 September 2014 Reply
I just noticed that you're in England. My lawn guy is a Brit. I'll have to tell him it took another Brit to tell me how to fix my toothbrush! Thanks.
by DJ on 06 September 2014 Reply
I just tried it. I squirted a little Dawn dish washing liquid into a tall coffee mug and added boiling water. It worked!!!
by JS on 21 November 2015 Reply
Thanks! Worked like a charm.
by Ayers on 04 August 2013 Reply
Thanks for this! Spent a wee while trying to pull the head of mine off before finding your post. Never even thought to try hot soapy water - seems so obvious now! :-)
by jay on 05 December 2014 Reply
I agree with Ayers. Thank you for your help. I did the same thing the first time I changed the head. At least I know there isn't a button I'm supposed to push. The Braun website should have a forum.
by John Swindells on 04 August 2013 Reply
Glad to help! It's amazing that Braun doesn't publish this neat tip on their website, don't you think?
by dave shultz on 25 September 2016 Reply
Don't you think fewer new ones would be bought if they did?
by John Swindells on 25 September 2016 Reply
People won't really throw away a perfectly good (and expensive) toothbrush because the head doesn't come straight off, surely? Braun must receive a lot of calls from people asking what to do.
by Dave Shultz on 25 September 2016 Reply
I was tempted to toss mine - thank goodness i found this info - thanks again
by Sandra Kearns on 25 March 2016 Reply
Thank you so much. It definately works. I was about to give up and your common sense approach saved the day.

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