Proper cleaning of your pump parts is essential to maintain the effectiveness and safety of your pump. Here are some tips on how often you should wash breast pump parts:
- If you have our Duette™ Dual Electric Breast Pump, review page 14 of our user manual for best practices on washing. If you have our Imani i2 Wearable Pump, review #8 on page 20 of our user manual for best practices when it comes to washing.
- For anything that comes in contact with breast milk (flange, flange insert, connector, duckbill, valve and membrane, reusable bags or bottles), if you can immediately wash - do so using warm, soapy water and a bottle brush to clean each part thoroughly. If you cannot wash your parts immediately, rinse them in water to remove milk residue, set them aside to wash later, and use the process mentioned above. Allow parts to air dry completely before using again (This is because parts may not work effectively when wet). *This is a good opportunity to check your parts for tears or cracks to see if you need to replace them.
- For sterilizing parts, refer to the manufacturer's guidelines; high heat sterilization can cause parts to warp and not work as effectively.
- If you notice your tubing or breast pump looking dirty, you can wipe gently with a slightly damp cloth to clean them.
Here are some pump part cleaning hacks that can make the cleaning process a bit easier:
- For silicone parts: Use soap and your hands/fingers to avoid puncturing or tearing.
- Soak in hot water: If you have dried milk stuck in your breast pump parts, try soaking them in hot water for a few minutes to loosen it up. Soaking in hot water can make cleaning the parts more effortless.
- For cloudy, silicone pump parts: Mix a paste of water and baking soda (The consistency should be thick but spreadable), apply to your parts, allow to sit for 10 minutes, and rinse and wash as usual. You can do this often as needed.
- Use a soft toothbrush or brush designed for smaller parts: A toothbrush or small cleaning brush can be a valuable tool for scrubbing the tiny, intricate pieces of your breast pump.
- Buy an extra set of pump parts. Having an extra set gives you more freedom in between pumping sessions and gives you an option while your other set is drying.
Overall, it's important to handle breast pump parts gently and carefully during the cleaning process and clean items according to your pump manufacturer’s guidance. Using the right products and techniques can help ensure that your pump parts stay in good working condition and are safe for use. Then, replace your parts as needed.
Here is a link to the CDC's guidance on how to keep your breast pump clean.