What should I do with an old breast pump?

If your breastfeeding and pumping days are drawing to a close, you may be wondering what you should do with your trusted breast pump. Perhaps you’re cleaning out the nursery and found some old baby supplies you don’t need anymore. 

There are quite a few options for old breast pumps, and this post will discuss the various ways you can get rid of a used breast pump without simply dumping it in the trash. 

While you may have mixed feelings about your breast pump, there’s no doubt that it is an expensive piece of machinery that helps your baby grow and thrive, so it shouldn’t just end up in a landfill. 

Read on for the easiest ways to pass your breast pump on to someone in need.

Store your pump for a future baby

If you have any plans or are on the fence about having another baby, it can’t hurt to save your breast pump until you know for sure what your future family plans entail.

Although many insurance companies offer a free breast pump for every baby, it may be a different model than the one you’ve used previously, and that will come with a learning curve. 

If your current breast pump works great for your lifestyle and baby’s needs, there’s no harm in storing it safely in your home for the next baby. It’ll save you time once your next baby is born, and you’ll be more confident pumping because you already know how the device works. 

If you plan to save your breast pump, sanitize all the parts and accessories before sealing them in a bag. Wipe down the pump and store everything in a temperature-controlled room. 

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Sell your breast pump 

Your best bet is to use the internet to find a buyer for your breast pump. 

Breast pumps are one of the more expensive baby items, so many expecting mothers in your area may be in the market for a pump. Create a post on Craigslist, Offer Up, or Facebook Marketplace with pictures of the pump, details about how it’s used and the shape it’s in, and the manufacturer’s information and recommendations about reusing it. 

Do some comparison research to determine the best price—if there are other pumps in a similar shape as yours, choose a competitive price so you’ll have more luck making a sale. Or, if you just want to get rid of the pump, list it for a low price, and you might be surprised at how quickly it sells. 

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Hand it down

Maybe you’ve got a neighbor, sister, cousin, or coworker who needs a breast pump. Take the time to ask around; perhaps your partner’s coworker is pregnant, or an extended family member needs one and it’s not covered by their insurance. 

You can even take your quest to social media; create a Facebook or Instagram post asking your friends and followers if they know anyone in need. If you don’t get any bites, try offering it for free on groups like local Buy/ Sell/ Trade on Facebook or Craigslist.  

Donate your breast pump 

A simple online search for charities or organizations in your area will tell you if they accept breast pumps as donations. These groups often help mothers in unsafe domestic situations, so breast pumps may be on their supply lists. 

Closed-system breast pumps may be accepted in these scenarios. These pumps have barriers installed that prevent breast milk or bacteria from the motor and the collection kit, making them safe to use by multiple mothers. 

Alternatively, open-system pumps don’t have a protective barrier, so cross-contamination is more likely if multiple mothers use the same pump. Many donation sites and women’s charities don’t accept open-system pumps for this exact reason, so be sure you know the type of pump you have before trying to donate it. 

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Recycle the pump or its accessories 

Depending on the manufacturer, recycling your breast pump may be an option. The breast pump company Medela has a recycling program for its electric pumps that encourages families to ship in their old pumps to be recycled or reused. 

If you aren’t sure if your pump can be recycled, try contacting the manufacturer to see if they have a recycling program in place. If not, try a local or national electronic recycling program to see if they will accept the pump. 

Aside from the pump itself, all the plastic pieces and accessories from the pump can be recycled unless otherwise stated. This includes the flanges, milk storage bags, containers, and valves. If nothing else, you can feel good about recycling some portion of your pump, if not the entire thing.

Related post: Try These Simple Tricks When Your Baby is Distracted While Bottle Feeding!

Wrap up- What Should I Do With An Old Breast Pump?

what should i do with an old breast pump

They may be tiny, but babies require a lot of stuff. The more we can reuse, resell, and recycle, the better! 

As you clean out your baby’s room and start to prepare for the next phase of their life, it’s both economically and environmentally responsible to look into what products you can resell, donate, and recycle. In doing so, you are reducing your carbon footprint and leaving the planet better than you found it. 

We’re doing it for the next generation, after all.

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