Here's How Long Your Breast Pump Will Last You

Purchasing a new breast pump is an important, albeit expensive, investment. If you plan to pump frequently or even semi-frequently, a hospital-grade electric pump is a must-have addition to your motherhood arsenal. Like any piece of equipment, breast pumps won't last forever though. Asking how long will a breast pump last, as well as how long you'll need to use it will help you decide which pump to buy and which brand to invest in.

According to Blisstree, most breast pumps have a one-year warranty, although that doesn't mean they won't last longer than that. According to several forums, moms claim their electric pumps last anywhere from seven months to several years, depending on how heavily you use it and how well you care for it.

Medela, one of the leading electric pump brands, has this to say regarding the lifespan of their pumps:

A high quality electric double pump might last through the breastfeeding of your second child, or even several children. However, like computers or other electronic products, an electric breast pump has a limited lifetime. Medela guarantees its pump motors with a one year warranty. If you use an electronic pump that has been used for more than one year, there is no guarantee that it will generate as much speed and vacuum as it did earlier in it’s [sic] life. By using your own pump, you can compare the pump’s performance with each child. However if you borrow a pump, you cannot gauge its performance to ensure it is operating at full capacity.

Therefore, buying a new pump is obviously the best way to prolong the life of your pump. You'll want to clean the parts after each use, and monitor the suction and sound of the motor as well. To clean your breast pump, Medela suggested removing each piece after every use, washing them with warm, soapy water. They also recommend cleaning the tubing and faceplate once a month, to avoid bacteria or mold growth.

The Blisstree article sourced above noted the most common signs of a breast pump wearing out is decreased suction, taking longer to pump the same amount that you're used to, a seemingly low milk supply (without the other signs of a true low supply), or a borrowed or used pump (which will wear out sooner than a new one, of course.) All in all, your breast pump should last you long enough to pump for at least your first child, if you buy a high quality, new pump.