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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Explore these FAQs first, then if you still have a question, we’d be happy to help.

General Questions

Who is Kai?

Kai USA is your source for kitchen and housewares products from the Kai Group, Japan. Kai products include the Pure Komachi 2 line of kitchen knives that brings brilliant colors and sharp performance to your kitchen, the Wasabi Black line of cutlery, which offers a beautiful selection of Eastern and Western blade shapes, and the Kai Select 100 collection of handy kitchen tools. Kai products are designed for beauty, function, and ease of use. Kai USA Ltd. is part of the Kai Group, a more than 111-year-old company headquartered in Tokyo, Japan. The Kai Group provides over 10,000 products worldwide, ranging from housewares and fine cutlery to beauty care products and medical supplies.

Use & Care Questions

What are the different blade shapes and what are their purposes?

Each culinary blade shape has been developed over the years to address specific needs and uses. Some, like the chef’s knife and the paring knife, are general-purpose knives that every kitchen and every cook needs. Others, like the boning knife and the meat cleaver, are for cooks who have specialized needs; in this case, working extensively with meats. The product description for each knife on this website provides information on the key uses for each particular knife.

Can I wash my knives in the dishwasher?

We recommend that you do not wash your knives in the dishwasher. Here’s why: The dishwasher can be hard on all your dishes, but it can be especially hard on knives because they tend to get knocked around during the cycle. Conversely, sharp knives can put “dings” in your dishwasher, too. In addition, when you wash different grades of metal together, brown spotting may occur on the higher quality metals. These spots can be difficult, if not impossible, to remove. Finally, many dishwashing detergents contain corrosive agents, such as citrus extracts. Not only can this cause unnecessary wear on your dishes, it can also cause pitting or corrosion on your Kai knives.

For all these reasons, we recommend that you protect your investment by handwashing your knives with a gentle dish soap.

What are appropriate cutting surfaces?

One key to keeping a knife sharp and avoiding chips is to use an appropriate cutting surface. Choose one made of softer materials, such as a soft wood, that will “give” under the blade. If the knife can leave a cut line in the board, your cutting board is sufficiently soft. Please do not cut on tile, ceramic plates, marble, granite, plastic, or acrylic. All of these surfaces will dull and chip your blade very quickly.

What is the proper way to hone a Kai blade?

To maintain the life of your blade and for optimal performance, it’s important to keep your knife honed. But remember that there’s a big difference between honing and sharpening. Honing maintains your blade. It simply realigns the micro edge of your blade to give you the best performance possible—until your knife is ready for sharpening. Sharpening actually removes metal from the blade, putting a fresh edge on the knife. If you hone regularly, you’ll cut down on the need for sharpening and extend the life of your knife.

You can easily hone your knives with the Kai Combination Honing Steel.

What’s the best way to sharpen my knives?

You have several options:

Return them to us for FREE sharpening

Kai owners may return their Kai knives to our Tualatin, Oregon facility for free sharpening. To take advantage of this service, please see the information about our sharpening service. Ship your knives to us using the carrier of your choice, however we strongly recommend a carrier that provides a tracking number. Without a tracking number, you will have no way of knowing that your package has arrived at our facility—and neither will we. We cannot be responsible for shipments without a tracking number.

Sharpen them yourself with a pull-through sharpener

For an electric sharpening option we recommend the Kai Electric Sharpener. For a manual pull-through, try our Diamond and Ceramic Retractable Sharpener, both of which match the 16° angle of our cutlery.

But please remember that sharpening is not something that should be done on a weekly basis. Sharpening actually removes some of the metal from the blade, so sharpening too frequently may reduce the life of your knife.

How should I store my knives?

Store your knives in a block, a knife case, an in-drawer knife holder, a sheath, a magnetic bar, or in the original box. If your knives are just thrown in a drawer, they can get dulled or chipped, as well as being a potential hazard when you reach into the drawer.

Is there anything Kai knives shouldn’t be used on?

Please do not use Kai knives on bones, joints, or frozen foods. Most Kai knives are designed for precision slicing rather than crushing down through hard materials.  The Kai PRO Asian Multi-Utility is perfect for cutting between joints and the Kai PRO Asian Utility works well on small bones. For heavy-duty cutting, we recommend the Kai PRO Meat Cleaver.

How can I help maintain the life of my knife?

Using your knife correctly isn’t only about how to maintain the edge or how to sharpen the blade; it’s also about how you use the knife on a daily basis.

Please do not push straight down on your blades. Not only will this result in arm fatigue for you, it can also be hard on your blades—and could result in chipping. When you cut, it’s important to use a “locomotive” motion. Move the blade in either a forward or backward direction. By pushing the blade forward when you chop, rather than pushing straight down, the blade does the work instead of having to use your muscle to cut. The same applies to pulling back on the knife. This slicing motion will cut down on unnecessary muscle strain and keep your blade in excellent condition.

Use & Care: Pure Komachi

Can Pure Komachi 2 and Pure Komachi HD knives be honed and sharpened?

Yes, they can. When most people ask that it’s because they’re concerned about harming the Pure Komachi 2 and Pure Komachi HD blade coating. But since you’ll only be honing or sharpening the very edge of the knife, and the edge isn’t coated, honing and sharpening won’t affect it. Just make sure you’re sharpening the knives to their proper 16° angle each side.

Are Pure Komachi 2 and Pure Komachi HD knives ceramic?

No, they’re not. Our Pure Komachi 2 and Pure Komachi HD blades are made of stainless steel with a food-safe, FDA-approved resin coating. This non-stick coating provides the eye-catching color, resists corrosion, makes cleaning simple, and helps the knife glide through food with ease. It also makes it easier to prevent cross-contamination of foods, for instance, by using the knife you just used to cut meat on the veggies. Pick a color for a particular type of food, then stick with it.

What can I do to protect the coating on Pure Komachi 2 and Pure Komachi HD knives?

Do not use scouring pads, steel, or gritty cleanser when cleaning the blades; it may damage the colorful coating. Do not cut frozen food with these knives. Please store them either in the matching sheath they came in or in a block or in-drawer tray.

Warranty/Service Questions

Why does my knife not hold an edge like it did when it was new? Is this covered under warranty?

Maintaining the edge of your knife to ensure it does not become dull is considered normal care and is the responsibility of the owner. It is not a defect covered by warranty. The sharpening process removes material from the knife. This means that the more you sharpen your knife, the wider the edge geometry becomes and the more frequently your knife will require sharpening.

Two things you can do that will help keep your knives sharp are to cut on a "soft" wood cutting board using a smooth, slicing motion, and to hone frequently with a Kai Honing Steel.

Is rust covered under warranty?

Stainless steel knives can still develop rust. Rust is caused by moisture left on the blade. Rust is not a manufacturing defect and is not covered under warranty. To remove rust from steel, we recommend a product named Flitz. Flitz is a blue gel which helps remove rust, stains, and corrosion from steel. If you decide to use the product, use it only on the areas directly affected by rust. We recommend not letting the Flitz sit on the blade steel for any length of time. After applying the Flitz and removing the rust, please wash your knife thoroughly with warm, soapy water, completely dry it with an absorbent material cloth or towel, and finish with a light coating of cooking-grade oil on the blade and handle cap of the knife. Specific instructions on how to use the Flitz product are available on the Flitz container. Our instructions are not intended to either supplement or surplant the directions of the Flitz manufacturer.

Someone used my knife and did not know how to use it properly; they caused damage. Is it covered?

Damage caused by misuse or accident by anyone, regardless of ownership, is not a defect. However, we can attempt to improve the condition of the knife. We can attempt to repair and/or to reshape the edge of your knife. Nevertheless, if our attempt is unsatisfactory or unsuccessful , Shun is not responsible for replacing the knife.

Damage caused by misuse or accident by anyone, regardless of ownership, is not a defect. However, we can attempt to improve the condition of the knife. We can attempt to repair and/or to reshape the edge of your knife. Nevertheless, if our attempt is unsatisfactory or unsuccessful , Shun is not responsible for replacing the knife.

I dropped my knife and damaged or broke it. Is this covered under warranty?

The warranty policy does not extend to damages incurred by accidental handling. We are happy to attempt to repair and/or to reshape the edge of your knife. However, if our attempt is unsatisfactory or unsuccessful, Kai is not responsible for replacing the knife.

The tip of my knife is bent. Can you repair or replace it?

A bent tip is the result of inappropriate use or accidental handling. Inappropriate use includes—but is not limited to—using the tip of the knife to start a cut, bending the tip while the knife is still stuck into the food you're cutting, or using it as a prying tool. Accidental handling includes—but is not limited to—dropping the knife in the sink, on the counter, on the floor, or bending the tip when pulling it out of a knife block. A bent blade is not a defect in such circumstances. However, we can attempt to repair and/or to reshape the edge of your knife for you. If our attempt is unsatisfactory or unsuccessful, Kai is not responsible for replacing the knife.

How will I know if my knife is covered under warranty?

Please provide your phone number and/or email address on your Warranty/Service Form. If there is any problem with your coverage, we will call you to discuss your knife. Otherwise, we will repair your knife within our usual turnaround time.

I shipped my knife to you for repair. Have you received it yet?

We encourage you to ship via a carrier that provides a tracking number. The tracking number allows you to easily verify your knife's arrival at our facility. Please note that Kai will not notify you of the arrival of your knife at our facility; having a tracking number from your carrier will enable you to check with your carrier to ensure your package’s arrival.

Can I have my old knife back if you choose to replace it?

We're sorry, but we cannot replace a knife and return the old one.

Where do I ship my knife for warranty service?

Please send your knives to Kai USA Ltd. You will need to complete our online Warranty/Service Form, print out a copy, and include it with your package. The information you need can be found here.

Shopping Questions

How is shipping calculated?

When you order, you will be able to choose from one of three shipping methods: Ground Shipping, UPS 2-Day, or UPS 1-Day. These are flat rates anywhere within the continental US.

When will I receive my order?

It will take 1-2 days to process your order. Once your order is processed, delivery time depends on the shipping method you select. See approximate delivery times here.

Which payment methods do you accept?

We accept all major credit cards: Amex, Visa, Mastercard, and Discover.

How do I cancel my order?

You may cancel your order at any time prior to Kai USA processing your order by calling 1-800-325-2891, Monday-Friday, 8 am to 4:30 pm, Pacific Time, or emailing customerserviceWEB@kai-usa.com. Unfortunately, we are not able to cancel orders once they have been shipped. You may, however, return the order once it arrives.

How do I access my order history?

Just login to your account on this website and view My Orders.

How do I return my order?

It's easy to return a product purchased from our website. You may return anytime within 30 days of when the order was placed. Please contact Customer Service to request a Return Authorization for products purchased from our website: 1-800-325-2891 (M-F, 8 am-4:30 pm, Pacific Time) or email us at customerserviceWEB@kai-usa.com.

Be sure to have the information from your packing slip available. You will receive email instructions for returning your product. Ship your unused product, in its original packaging, to the address identified in our email. Kai USA is not responsible for returned items until they are received by us. We recommend that you insure/track your returned items. Find more information here.

How long do I have to return my order?

If you aren't delighted with your purchase from our website, you can return an unused product, in the original packaging, and with a copy of our website email receipt, within 30 days and we will happily refund the purchase price. Original delivery fees are refunded only if returns are for defective products, products that were not described accurately, or incorrect orders.