What to Do with Breast Pump

Updated on October 27, 2008
L.K. asks from Round Rock, TX
48 answers

I have one of the expensive Medela breastpumps that I have been done with for about a year and a half. The documentation with it says not to let anyone use it etc., and we are not planning on another. I hate to just throw it away, as it was over $300. Any advice as to what I should do with it?

Thanks!

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So What Happened?

Mamasource is great and everyone on here is fantastic - i received a private message from a member who was interested in buying it. We met in Austin and she got a great deal! Thanks everyone!

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M.H.

answers from Austin on

Hello. I wonder why you shouldn't let anyone else use it. I mean if it's properly cleaned, I would think try to sell it. Have you considered Craig's list or what about announcing it as you just did hear on this site. This site seems to get a lot of hits! Just thoughts-

M. H.
www.akashastudios.com

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M.G.

answers from Houston on

I'm glad you wrote this....I too have one that I barely used. At one month we found out my baby was lactose intolerant.

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M.S.

answers from Houston on

my friend gave me hers, the parts are replaceable and I was grateful for it. You can rent those things too so giving it to someone seems ok to me.

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J.M.

answers from Houston on

I actually bought my medela used from a friend for $100. I sterelized everything a few times before use. My husband is doctor and didnt see a problem with it...I used it for about a year and never had a problem.

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M.F.

answers from Austin on

L.,

I know that Special Addition on Lamar can sterilize the parts, but I'm not sure about the pump itself. You might want to call them and ask about it.

I didn't have my own pump, but I just donated all of the tubing, horns, etc. to SafePlace in Austin. They were happy to take it.

M.

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A.B.

answers from Sherman on

sell it on ebay. i have a friend who does it as a business. people will pay for pump but maybe not attachments.

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S.H.

answers from Houston on

L.,

I think that they mean not to use the same cups and hose for another person or child. You can purchase the replacement pieces. My sister borrowed another girls pump and just bought new pieces and it worked great.

Thanks,
Sandee

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B.G.

answers from Austin on

Definitely sell it or donate it. If you choose to donate, contact Special Addition near Central Market. They might have some ideas. There is no problem with re-using them. The new owner can buy new parts or steralize what you have. It's ridiculous to throw them out. I have loaned mine to two friends and it was my cousin's before I took over. The milk doesn't go into the tubes, it's just air.

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A.N.

answers from Austin on

Hi L. -

Call a breast pump rental place - they should be able to tell you - good luck!

Alli

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S.D.

answers from Austin on

You can sell it on Craigslist.org...people still buy them, although they replace the tubing. The Mommy and Me Consignment sale sells them also although they only accept the machine, nothing else.

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A.C.

answers from San Antonio on

I bought my best friend's old pump for $150 and just bought all new tubing and pump parts so I'm sure you could sell it on ebay or to a friend. I do know that san antonio birth doulas is a non-profit that supports low income and teen mothers and I'm sure they'd love it if you're just going to throw it away. Hope that helps.

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A.J.

answers from Austin on

you might want to check with the hospital. i know that you can rent breast pump. you can ask them how they are clean,and maybe you can sell it.

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A.Z.

answers from Houston on

I had an interesting thought - if milk can get in the pump and grow bacteria, then logically, every mother who uses a breast pump should plan on buying a new one every time she has a baby. Interesting money making strategy for Medela.

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F.P.

answers from San Angelo on

hello
you can sell it on ebay.Believe it or not people but them used. I had the same kind with extra attachments and sold mine on there for over 150$. you wont get what you paid for it but someone will buy it.Or give it to a womans shealter.Hope this helped Good luck:)

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N.H.

answers from Houston on

Well, although the instructions may say let no one else use it, why not? Can you not sterilize it? Clean it real well then sterilize it? I donated the one I got from the hospital to hurricane relief. It wasn't used all that much...I couldn't produce enuf milk for a 2oz bottle so just used formula but I cleaned it real well & just donated it along w/all those unused 2oz bottles in addition to some other things to the hurricane relief. Perhaps you'd want to try & sell it like on Ebay or someplace, since it was expensive. If no luck, consider donating it. Women's needs type shelters or organizations are always looking for good donations. Just a thought. ;)

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K.A.

answers from Austin on

You can get new parts to it and just reuse the pump part. I did that. I had brand new parts that attached to me but a used pump.

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J.D.

answers from Austin on

I agree with others. You should sell it on Ebay. I bought mine (brand new) on Ebay, but there were many used ones for sell that were used. As long as the buyer also buys replacement parts, there should be no problem in using it.

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P.D.

answers from San Antonio on

I also have a medulla breast pump that was worth over $300. However, I only paid $100 for it on craigslist. Now, it was used, but i actually got it from a lactation nurse. She had put all the parts in boiling water and i did the same. I also changed out a few of the important parts (like the filters) before using. Now, I use it and love it and will probably resell it on craigslist once I'm done having my kids. now, I'm no expert and I've heard of the whole not buying used ones, but breast pumps are rented all the time and parts of a pump are easy and cheap to replace. So, if you want to sell it, I don't see any problem with it. or, you can give it to someone you know who really needs it and can't afford it. I hope you find a good "home" for it. Good luck!

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D.B.

answers from El Paso on

You may want to contact your local La Leche League and see if they will take it as a donation, or maybe even a public women's clinic.

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P.L.

answers from Houston on

Wash it really well, sterilize it, and then sell it on ebay or take it to a consignment shop. I'm with you - no sense throwing things like that out that still can be put to good use!

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H.P.

answers from Corpus Christi on

I would find a friend or family member that needs it. The pump itself is reusable, whoever gets it next just needs to buy new attatchments. IE the tubing, bottles and breast pieces. I got mine from the wife of someone my husband worked with, and then I gave that to my sister. You may want to call your local Le Letch Leauge and they may have someone in need of one.

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L.B.

answers from Odessa on

I would have been thrilled to come across a used Medela. I paid for a new one, which at that time, we didn't have the money. I've let a couple people borrow it, and they bought new attachments for it. We're pregnant now and I plan on using it, then selling it or donating it to a good cause.

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L.M.

answers from Houston on

well you can always find someone that can use it exspecially if it is a good one when i had my son i tried the one from the hospital which back then was junk then i bought one before finally finding one that worked for me it came from a friend

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V.B.

answers from Houston on

I've had 2 breastpumps and I got both of them used. Go ahead and sell it to someone who needs one. Just tell them to buy the parts for it new (tubing, bottles, shields, etc.). I don't really understand why they say not to share them. As long as the parts are replaced, it's perfectly okay to do that.

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A.J.

answers from Visalia on

i've heard of people selling them before! as long as the person who buys it from you sterilizes the removeable parts that touch the breastmilk, then it should be perfectly sanitary. think about it, hospitals have the really big powerful breast pumps they let women use in labor and delivery. i say sell it for at least half what you paid for it =)

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R.T.

answers from Killeen on

Hi L.,
Yes they say not to let anyone else use them, but no milk actually gets in the pump, just the pump attachments. So I think it would be okay to sell it on Craigslist or something. They have pumps at the hospitals to use for the NICU so they have to be okay to "reuse."

A.W.

answers from Houston on

Considering you can rent them from a hospital (we rented one) I don't see why not give it away or sell it. The important thing is to sterilize everything. Also, whoever gets it can buy new tubes & attachments to go with it. I wouldn't throw it out. Someone will need it. :)

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J.M.

answers from Odessa on

Hi L..
You can pass this on or sell it. It's not safe to re-use the external parts(tubes, cups, bottles, etc.) but Target and Toy's r Us carry all the replacement parts. Just tell whoever purchases the unit that they'll need to purchase the external parts themselves. Things like this are always a welcome gift to those who cannot afford them. The hospital rentals are just not very "pretty" and I know whoever gets yours will appreciate it.

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D.R.

answers from Austin on

i bought a used one and gave it away when we were done. i had no problems. we did buy new tubing, etc. i agree throwing it away seems like such a waste. try the la leche legue and see if they will take it.

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D.C.

answers from Austin on

L.,
I know that there are places like "Special Addition" here n town that rent out breast pumps, so I think it's fine to donate it to a charity. There may just be some parts that need to be changed out or sterilized, but don't throw it out! Some nice mommy out there will appreciate not spending 300 dollars!
-D. C

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S.D.

answers from Houston on

Don't throw it away!! Give it to a friend and just have them purchase new plastic tubes, shields, and collection containers.

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P.H.

answers from Austin on

I've seen them for sale at Pumpkin Patch and other consignment places. The machine is safe to reuse, just not the tubing or little valves, etc. (and those are the cheap things to replace) Try selling it yourself on Craigslist if you want to. Someone will use it and you can make back a few bucks!
(I just have to laugh a little at the idea of using a friend's breastpump but not a stranger's. If it's bacteria we are avoiding, what's the difference between your friend's bacteria and stranger's bacteria? Think about it. Pretty silly, huh?) That being said, I used my best friend's neighbor's pump with my last baby, just with my own attachments. Moms on a serious budget will get over the possible germ thing and buy used, so you will have no problem selling it.

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S.T.

answers from Houston on

I echo the others- while it IS slightly possible to get milk into the pump, it's a risk worth taking for someone who can't afford a new one. I bought mine for several hundreds of dollars because my baby was in the NICU and I was pumping. There are others in the same boat. Freecycle is more likely to get just anyone pick it up, maybe someone who wants to resell it. I'd list it on Craigslist FIRST and then Freecycle if no one takes.

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K.K.

answers from Killeen on

I would contact medela and ask about a recycling program. Some of the motors could possibly be cleaned by professionals and placed in a newer less expensive one to be handed out for use in shelter and such, perhaps??? If they do not currently have a recycling program you could suggest such...

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T.F.

answers from Houston on

I would like to buy one. I actually sold mine after I had my 2 older kids. The buyer just has to purchase new tubes and hook-ups! :) Let me know--email address is [email protected]____.com and I will get back in touch with you.

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M.M.

answers from Houston on

Hi L.,
You can sell your breast pump and the person who buys it can purchase new tubing and breast cups. They are fairly inexpensive @ babies r us. I know my resale shop in Sugar Land sells them too so that might be an option to get rid of it and make a little extra money on it.

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J.R.

answers from Houston on

Hi L.,

I borrowed my friends Medela breastpump and sterilized everything, it saved us on having to buy one and I know many friends that have borrowed. You have a very good one so I would see if you have any friends that could borrow it if not maybe Ebay unless you have a good resale shop to take it to. I know many of my friends that did not want to have to buy a new one and felt comfortable just sterilizing. A garage sale will not bring you a lot for that.

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K.R.

answers from Houston on

Sell it. They can buy new attachments parts.

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B.B.

answers from Sherman on

I would sell it our give it away to someone who could use it. Most of the parts could be serilized or replacement parts can be bought for it.

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J.H.

answers from Houston on

I would think that there are organizations who work with unwed/homeless mothers who must work and could use it. Just open the yellow pages, or call a woman's shelter, or the county health dept.

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C.C.

answers from San Antonio on

Boil the parts and put it on Craigslist.

(Ebay no longer allows sales of used pumps)

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N.B.

answers from Killeen on

If you are sure you might not have another baby, sterilize it and offer it for sale.
There might be somebody who is interested in it and happy to get a good geal to be able to afford a good breast pump.
Also I am sure there are some parts that could be replaced if necessary or wanted.
Personally, I rather buy a less expensive or manual pump and have a brandnew one, because somethings you can't sterilize good enough.

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E.L.

answers from Austin on

Check to see if you can sell on Craig's list. I'm sure someone less fortunate would love to get it for less especially if there isn't anything wrong with you or the pump.

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J.W.

answers from Houston on

No, you don't have to throw it away L..
It can be completely sterilised with a sterilising solution such as Milton or a solution of bleach.
You can sell it through your local ads "almost new".

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H.H.

answers from Houston on

I am responding just as much because of other people's confusion here. The reason they say it is a "single user" pump is because your milk CAN get into the pump mechanism, grow bacteria, and be unsafe for someone else. The big hospital grade pumps are designed to not let that happen. It's a difference in design (and why no one can afford to buy a hospital grade pump!!!). Medela says it is not safe to just replace the tubing and parts. I know lots of people say it is fine if you sterilize it, but there really is no way to sterilize nor clean the inside of the pump, making it really only safe for the person who used it first.

That being said, lots of people buy and sell used pumps. If you do sell it on craigslist or ebay, just make sure you label it as used so others can make an informed decision. Also, you could contact La Leche, but they might not be interested, as it IS intended to be a single use pump. It is easy to find all the replacement parts to it as well. Definitely don't try to resell any of that. Do they still allow used breast pumps to be sold on ebay? They don't allow used cloth diapers anymore, so it surprises me that they would still allow breast pumps.

I personally wouldn't buy a used pump from someone that I don't know, but it would be different to me if it was a friend or relative. Do you have any friends or relatives that might have a baby soon and might have a use for your pump? That would be my first thought if it were me.

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L.H.

answers from Houston on

I suggest joining the freecyle group for your area & posting it. Someone who needs it will come pick it up off of your porch.

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M.Z.

answers from Austin on

let someone else use it. after they use it a couple times and dump what they pump,and clean it. you just cant sell it. give it to a friend. i know i could have used a used one when i had a rink adink hand pump that gave me corpal tunnel syndrome : )

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A.C.

answers from Houston on

Try donating it a place that does breast pumping. Check women's hospital or donate it to a shelter. They proably could use it.

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