Post # 1
I’ll be going back to work and need to pump a lot. Thankfully insurance covers the cost and my work has an area I’ll be able to use. I would love opinions from moms who pump/pumped on which breast pump you used and whether you liked it or not. Any standouts/ones to avoid? I don’t want this thing breaking one week two!
I added a poll with my options.
Post # 3
@cora_123: I am still pregnant, but a lot of people liked the Madela pump. When I went to register over the weekend I was avoiding the breast pumps because I just wasn’t sure, and I really wasn’t prepared to read the back of all the boxes to see if any of them measured up to Medela. Anyway, there was a new mom in the aisle that said, “I’m sorry for eavesdropping, but I would recommend the Medele pump.”
I’m glad she eavesdropped because it just further justified my decision to get one.
Post # 4
One thing to consider: Hygeia (and I think Ameda?) makes a “closed-system” pump, while all of the other personal pumps (including Medela) are “open-system.” A closed system pump is designed so that there is no way your fluids can get into the mechanism (where they can breed bacteria, mold, etc.). That makes it possible to safely re-sell them to a second user (they would get their own set of brand-new attachments and tubing), and/or to store them for several years and re-use them down the road for a future baby. With open-system pumps, there is a contamination risk in doing so and it is not recommended, so a lot of them end up in landfills. Hygeia’s website specifically states that their goal is to have their pumps stay in use and out of landfills.
ETA: Here is an article on open-system pumps and why you might want to avoid them if you would like to resell/reuse yours down the road.
Post # 5
@KCKnd2: just one thing about Hygeia: I was totally on board with wanting one because of the closed system thing. But, I was reading reviews and learned that they have a history of poor customer service. So I got a little worried and ended up going with a Medela because the customer service there is supposedly amazing.
Good thing I did! About a week after I started pumping full time, my friggin’ $300 pump stopped working. DISASTER! So I called Medela customer service in a panic, and they 1) tried to troubleshoot the broken pump with me over the phone; 2) when it couldn’t be fixed, they overnighted me a new pump; 3) they also shipped me a new manual pump free of charge, and told me to go to the store and buy a manual pump to get me through til the new electric one arrived, and then just go return the one they sent me so that in the end I wasn’t out any money.
I was legitimately crying when my pump broke, but the Medela customer service person was so great that I felt 100% better when I got off the phone. So don’t discount the importance of good customer service when it comes to something as important as a pump you need to use 8 times a day!!
Post # 6
@cora_123: Medela for sure. I used one version with my first and am now using another with my sevond (borrowed the first from a family member and bought myself one for my second baby).
I can’t say I’ve used any other types but I loved Medela so much the first time that I went back to it for round two.
Post # 7
@KCKnd2: I’ve seen that come up a few times and is absolutely something I am considering, I haven’t heard the best things about the Ameda but Hygeia seems to be a good choice.
@iarebridezilla: Wow, really good to know!!! I think if I don’t go with the Medela I would go with the Hygeia but you’ve certainly given me something to think about!
Post # 8
@cora_123: I had an Ameda. I liked that it was easy to use, a closed system, and had fantastic customer support.
It was an “ok” pump. If I had do pump exclusively all over again, I’d go with a Medela but keep my Ameda as a back up.
Also, FYI, you’ll need to replace some parts as you go. The membranes, little valves, and sometimes the tubing… if you start to notice a decrease in suction or output try swapping those items out first. I called the customer service people in a panic because I thought my pump crapped out on me!
Post # 9
@DaneLady: How soon after you started and often did you have to replace?
Post # 10
@cora_123: I replaced valves every month or so, membranes/diaphragms every other month or so, and I went several months with my tubing (except the time the dog thought it was a great chew toy… ugh.)
Post # 11
Here is a good site with aggregated reviews of a variety of breast pumps.
ETA: The “How to Choose” tab has some useful information on it. Also, at one of our childbirth classes I asked about pumps and the instructor mentioned that recently several formula manufacturers (i.e. Gerber) have gotten into the business of manufacturing pumps, and that as a rule they make really inferior products. (The reviews on the site seem to bear that out.) Makes sense, since they have a longer-term financial interest in not supporting breastfeeding and instead getting parents to switch to formula!
Post # 13
Every mom that I know has recommended the Medela so that’s what I ordered. I haven’t had my LO yet so can’t say from experience yet.