29 answers

Seeking Recommendations and Warnings for Dual Electric Breast Pumps

I will be breastfeeding my second child after he is born in late July/early August. I breastfed my first son about four years ago, and used a simple hand operated breast pump from Avent. This worked quite poorly, in my opinion. I have large breasts and nipples, so I though maybe this was the problem. Many mothers have recommended that I try a dual electric pump, which I am open to, but I want to research my options, and there is nothing quite like the approval of moms that have tested them already! :-) There are a few options on the market right now:

Ameda Purely Yours Breast Pump - BPA Free

Ameda Purely Yours Ultra Double Electric Breast Pump

Medela Pump In Style Advanced

Playtex Embrace Double Electric Breast Pump

Avent Isis IQ Duo Twin Electronic Breast Pump

I would love to hear comments, concerns, warnings, recommendations and any other feedback from those of you that have used one of these pumps, or know someone who had an experience with one. Thank you in advance for all of your help!

2 moms found this helpful

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Featured Answers

Hi V.,
Like you, I have large breasts, so I thought I'd share my experiences with you. I had a difficult time pumping. I started out with the Avent Isis IQ Single Pump, but I couldn't seem to get much milk. Then, thinking maybe the problem was the pump, I tried the Medela Pump in Style Double Pump. That was worse, I couldn't get any milk at all with that. So, I went back to the Avent and discovered that the only way for me to get any milk was to lean forward and hold my breast up from underneath. In that, rather awkward position, I was able to actually pump successfully. Based on that, I don't know how I'd ever get anywhere with a double pump - - unless someone else was helping me hold everything! :) It just didn't seem like the pumps were very effective on large breasts, but maybe it was just me... Good Luck and best wishes with the new baby!

1 mom found this helpful

I used the Medella Pump in Style Advanced and it was great! My son wouldn't latch on so I had double duty of pumping and feeding all the time, and I took it to work with me. It was worth the $.

1 mom found this helpful

The Medela pump in style is awesome!! I used it for both my kids, and lent it to my sister-in-law for her two kids ( you just get new tubing and bottles) and she lent it to her sister and sister-in-law. That is 8 kids it was used for. This is way past what the life of the motor is reported to be. It was one solid product!

1 mom found this helpful

More Answers

I have the Medela and had no problems with it. They sell replacement valves that fit larger breasts. A warning about pumps in general is that some people are unable to pump successfully or aren't able to get out as much milk this way--as you probably know, the baby's mouth is much more efficient at getting out milk.

Anything they sell these days is going to be BPA-free. Because of all the bad press, they've pretty much done away with BPA in baby bottles. Even if the pump itself had BPA parts which I don't think it would, those parts aren't going to come in contact with your milk anyway. It's best to use glass to avoid all leaching, because even the safest plastics can leach something into your milk, especially if you heat them. I'd use glass bottles with the silicone sleeves to help avoid the breakage issue.

1 mom found this helpful

Hi V.,
I have no comparison but am using the Medela Pump in Style and like it a lot. I am a FT working Mom and this one saves me time. It takes < 10 minutes and since I have more than 2 shields, I do the cleaning when I get back from work. I use the special Medela Micro-steam bags (for the microwave :) to desinfect all the parts in. I have one warning for you: I tried to clean the tubing also (separately, as they recommend...) but it melted. I am going to try micro-steaming the new tubing again but won't put it in the microwave for as long. You mentioned that you have large breasts and nipples. Medela has all different sizes of shields so I'm sure you'd find one kind for yourself.
I'm sure you know that... please do not start pumping untill your milk supply is established, I had some problems with that...
Good luck with the baby and the pump :)
Mama Magda

1 mom found this helpful

Hi V.,
I think any pump made by Medela is worth the money. I had a Double Ease given to me as a shower gift in 2003 and used it to different extents with all four of my children. They just keep getting more advanced with their designs, the one I used at Albany Med in April was Hospital Grade I'm sure that was called Symphony - a terrific pump. Medela also has these great sterlizer bags you use in 1.5 seconds in your microwave! Check those out! Good Luck. E.

1 mom found this helpful

I liked the Medela Pump In Style Advanced. I can't compare it to any others but I had no problems with it. They are expensive but I do recommend the dual electric pump. It will make your life easier!

1 mom found this helpful

I used the Whisper Wear Hands Free Pump. I had a hard time getting much milk when I pumped until I found this one. I was able to nurse on one breast and pump on the other at the same time. I was relaxed and looking at my baby boy so it worked really well. The system comes with two so that you can pump both sides at the same time, but I was never able to get much that way.

You can google it and learn about it. I don't think that you can get it at regular stores, only online.

1 mom found this helpful

I used the Medella Pump in Style Advanced and it was great! My son wouldn't latch on so I had double duty of pumping and feeding all the time, and I took it to work with me. It was worth the $.

1 mom found this helpful

I have the Medela Freestyle!!!! LOVE IT!! Very good suction and the settings are great!!! The beginning of the process mimics that of a baby very fast for 2 minutes and then very long suctions..... I have always had to work very hard to get milk out and for the prior 2 kiddies I used the Medela Pump in Style. This one just seems to work better for me!!! I like that I can hook the base on my shirt or pants and be free handed by just hooking my bra over the shield.

Hope this helps!!1

1 mom found this helpful

I have been using the Medela Pump in Style since last July and have no complaints. I had my daughter last April, returned to work in September and no one even thinks it's a pump. It's well worth the cost.

1 mom found this helpful

Without a doubt, I highly recommend the Avent Isis iQ Duo double electric pump. I bought it back in November after 2 months of renting a Medela hospital grade pump. After TONS of research I finally decided on the Avent for a number of reasons, here are the biggest reasons:
1. Hospital grade motor, I found research stating that this was the only pump on the market with a pump as strong as the hospital grade.
2. Pumping style... with the rented pump, there was on/off and a dial that turned the pump from painful to toe curling!! With the Avent, you control the entire pumping rhythm. You begin by pumping manually at exactly the force and speed which is comfortable and most productive for you, after just a few manual pumps, you press a button and the electric pump takes over totally mimicing the rhythm you set. You can stop and reset a different rhythm at any time with the touch of a button.
3. OPTIONS!! This Avent pump can be used as a double electric, single electric or it even comes with equipment to turn it into a single manual pump to throw in your bag for quick trips. You could even use it as a double manual pump but you would have to still be hooked up to the motor.
4. Lastly, and probably most importantly for me, it is one of the very few personal pumps on the market with a CLOSED SYSTEM meaning there is no chance of milk backing up into the motor and contaminating fresh milk. This also means that it is safe to use second hand. Most pumps on the market including the Pump In Style do not have this feature and are not meant to be used by more than one user. This may or may not be a consideration for you but it was for me knowing I would probably be selling it or passing it on to a friend once I was done with it. All parts that come in contact with your skin or milk can be completely sanitized so, again, safe to share.

So even though it was pricey (nearly $400) I did the math and came to the conclusion that it was worth it and took the plunge. Once I started using it and got used to the new way it worked (well not new but different from the Medela I had been using) I was thrilled with my purchase and here are the reasons why:
1. All of the reasons listed above were true and worth the purchase.
2. I pumped twice as much milk in half the time as with the hospital double pump I was using. For various reasons nursing was difficult at times so I pumped a great deal to provide milk for my daughter when nursing wasn't possible, therefore this pump and I were close friends and it was good to me, not painful, quick and effective! BTW I have large breasts and nipples and never had a problem with the size of the cones.
3. We were using Avent bottles so I was able to pump right into the bottles we would then feed from without the need for adaptors, etc.
4. I also purchased a car adaptor and was able to pump when we had taken long car trips. We have a mini van with tinted windows in the back so I would hide out back there!
5. It comes in a great carrying case that is perfect for travel or even just moving it around in your house. Everything you need fits right inside.

Sorry to be so lengthy in my response but this really is a great pump and I feel it never gets the props it deserves because of the other more popular ones on the market. Although this is an extremely personal item and everyone may have different experiences with different pumps for a number of reasons, this is a great pump and I think you'd be pleased with it. The biggest downside for me is the price but it is worth it if you plan on using it for even 2-3 months (as opposed to say purchasing formula instead, not in place of EBF). If you are interested in a used one, I am willing to sell mine as I think we are done having children and I hate to see this perfectly GREAT pump go to waste! I'd would be asking $200 for it or your best, reasonable offer. Let me know if you are interested.

Good luck to you whatever you decide and blessings to you and your family on #2!!!

1 mom found this helpful

Loved the Medela! It had all of the "extra" attachments (including a car adapter), which was great. My sister will be using mine after her twins and she just bought the larger cups and it seems fine!

My only advice (from the salesperson, actually)- don't buy it until AFTER the baby! This is one of the few items that CANNOT BE RETURNED under any circumstances. The salesperson suggested that we wait and make sure that the baby and I were fluidly nursing before purchasing!

1 mom found this helpful

The Medela pump in style is awesome!! I used it for both my kids, and lent it to my sister-in-law for her two kids ( you just get new tubing and bottles) and she lent it to her sister and sister-in-law. That is 8 kids it was used for. This is way past what the life of the motor is reported to be. It was one solid product!

1 mom found this helpful

Hi,
I have two kids.
I was given a pump from my sister who purchased the Medela Pump in Style in 2000! I used it in 2005 and pumped exclusively for 6 months (baby refused to latch on). So, it got ALOT of use and it kept on tickin'...

Then I used it again for baby #2 who was able to nurse and I used this pump for a full year while I worked full time.

I really thought the motor would burn out, but it really works great and had absolutely no problems with it. I have actually given this pump to a friend to use...and it's still going.

You could always rent the hospital pump if you wanted to.

My fave website for nursing questions is kellymom.com - maybe other moms there have suggestions.
:) Best of luck!

1 mom found this helpful

I second the Medela Pump...it gets the job done and has been a lifesaver since I've returned to work

1 mom found this helpful

I have the Medela Pump In Style and love it! One nice feature is that Medela parts are interchangeable with Evenflo, so I was able to use the glass Evenflo bottles and pump directly into them. It pumped quickly and efficiently. The Advanced has a few features the regular one does not, but I assume it would work as well.

1 mom found this helpful

V. -

I used the Medela pump in style with all three of my kids and it still works!! Great pump, easy to use, portable in that it comes with either a backpack or messenger type bag, very fast, can adjust the strength of the pumping, etc. I sent my husband out to get me a pump, he came home with this one and it was the best investment I ever made. No issues at all. Good luck!

- K.

1 mom found this helpful

I used the Medela Pump in Style Advanced. Good system, easy to use. No complaints about it.

1 mom found this helpful

Hey V.,
Just like you my kids are four years apart. I had my daughter this past April so the age difference will be good for you. Anyway, I recommend Medela pump in style like the other women do. It works very well. Unfortunately for me I don't produce an adquate supply of milk and stopped trying to breastfeed. I was just pumping a half ounce so for me it was time to stop. Anyway, I am looking to sell my pump in style so in case u are interested please let me know. They retail in the store for over $300 but I can sell you mine for $200. You can buy the right cup size for your breasts at any retailer who sells medela products or on their website. I am offering to sell u the pump, bag, and main acccessories. Please contact me if you are interested. As you can see from the other responses it is a good pump overall and you may have more success than I did. Again, please contact me if you are interested, thanks.

1 mom found this helpful

Medela Pump In Style Advanced is the best as far as I know. I have 3 daughters and tried a hand pump first and then got the Medela as a gift from Mum and have used through 3 girls - they nursed about 18 months or so each. Just had it it serviced replaced the parts and it just kept going. I think we may pass the pump on to my younger sister if Medela service thinks it will work another few year. More than reliability though it was great and I too hav elarge breasts with nipples to match so many pumps do not get a grip. Travels well too. Good luck with that and the new baby too.

1 mom found this helpful

I am very happy w medela pump in style. Very! No complaints. Its so fast and easy to do both breasts at once. Easy to clean/sterilize pieces, hand wash the tubes ans u r all set.

Also, fyi, lansinoh makes best breastmilk storgae bags for freezer.

1 mom found this helpful

Hi V.,
Like you, I have large breasts, so I thought I'd share my experiences with you. I had a difficult time pumping. I started out with the Avent Isis IQ Single Pump, but I couldn't seem to get much milk. Then, thinking maybe the problem was the pump, I tried the Medela Pump in Style Double Pump. That was worse, I couldn't get any milk at all with that. So, I went back to the Avent and discovered that the only way for me to get any milk was to lean forward and hold my breast up from underneath. In that, rather awkward position, I was able to actually pump successfully. Based on that, I don't know how I'd ever get anywhere with a double pump - - unless someone else was helping me hold everything! :) It just didn't seem like the pumps were very effective on large breasts, but maybe it was just me... Good Luck and best wishes with the new baby!

1 mom found this helpful

I have the playtex double pump. I had to buy the Lansinoh breast milk storage bottles to attach to the pump to get enough suction for the double pump. It came with bottles that use the drop ins, which I could use to pump one side at a time, and it was convenient because then it was right in a bottle. I guess the Lansinoh bottles just had a better seal on it, and then it was right in a BPA free storage bottle which was easy to transport (and you can buy nipples for them and use them right as bottles too.)
I bought the Playtex one in an emergency. I had another pump (I can't remember the brand, sorry) that died and I was very full, on my way back to work from a lunch in which I couldn't nurse or pump. I grabbed it because it was the first one I saw on the shelf that wasn't horribly expensive, and have liked it since.

1 mom found this helpful

I used the Avent Isis manual pump when I had my last baby 10 years ago too - what a great pump, I was able to use it to work fulltime from 2 1/2 months and always get enough milk, never supplemented.
Of the pumps you mentioned, I wouldn't buy the Playtex - not around as long as the others and not the same reputation. The Pump In Style is really the gold standard. Due to my experience with the Isis, I would not hesitate to try the Isis electric. The Purely Yours is pretty comparable to the PIS, but it is supposedly noisy so if you're trying to be discreet at work, this may not be a good option. Personally I wouldn't use an Ameda because of philosophical differences with the company, but that has nothing to do with the quality of the pump
Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

Hi V.!
I too did my research on pumps before my LO was born. It's an investment!! I went with the Ameda Purely Yours double electric pump. Well, I don't have anything to compare it to since this was my first child, but I love it! First of all, the price is much better than the Medela, which I read is a great pump also, but the most expensive. I purchased the Ameda with the carryall bag, which includes a small bottle cooler with 6 bottles, replacement pieces and the bag for $180 at babycatalog.com. Without the bag I believe it was $149. I thought I would be going back to work full time but then got laid off the week I was supposed to go back. But, I'm not sorry about this purchase.

The pump is relatively quiet, and pretty small. You said you have large breasts so I would recommend getting the larger flange size since the ones that come with it are smaller. Overall, I've been very happy with it. Also I store frozen milk in the Lansinoh freezer bags after I pump and they are the best bags! No twist ties, no leaks. I freeze them flat and them stack them up once they are frozen.

Good luck deciding on a pump, and congratulations!!

1 mom found this helpful

I loved the Medela pump in style - I used it with both my kids and it always worked great!

1 mom found this helpful

I used the Ameda purely yours breast pump. It worked great and I had no problems with it. I nursed for 10 months so it got a lot of use! Plus its a lot less expensive than the Medela.

1 mom found this helpful

V.-
I know this isn't on your list, but I absolutely love my Medela Freestyle. I think it's a little more money than the Pump in Style, but it's so worth it. The pump motor portion is small, so I can walk around the house and get other things done while I'm pumping. The motor clips onto your waistband or has a little rope that you can put around your wrist. Being a SAHM, the Freestyle is great because I can play with my son and move around while I'm pumping.

The Pump in Style motor is built into a bag so you have to bring the bag with you where ever you go. That's good if you are pumping at work and will just be sitting at your desk and not moving around.

You mentioned using a hand pump with your first child. I started with an Avent hand pump and gave up after using it twice. I pumped so much more milk the first time I used the Freestyle. Plus, it saves so much time since you can do both breasts at the same time.

Good luck!
-T.

love my ameda better than medela which i used for 1st baby-i had been given it by my sister. ameda BPA free not very expensive and no complaints...

I loved my Medela ... well worth the $$$ and also used it for 2 kids. If you are large, you can also buy an attachment for larger nipples. Also, if you are not quite sure yet, I would recommend to rent from the hospital first so that you don't have to spend all this money for nothing.

I use the Medela Hands Free Double Pump, it works and I can walk around while pumping.

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