Wanted to take a moment to talk about my breast pump adventures, because oh my... after much education and wasted money I wish I could write my previous self a letter about how this all worked! Here's the saga:
I knew I needed a breast pump to go back to work, but I'm a cheap engineer so I asked some friends for opinions and they said the Lansinoh Double Electric was the best double pump for your money. It's $150 at Target, I found it online for $100. There were also dirt cheap used ones on ebay but I was weirded out by the idea of a used pump.
The Lansinoh was okay. My hospital gave me a Medela attachment kit, because that's what they do, so I hacked a bit of parts for my Lansinoh to work with my Medela attachments and that was much nicer. The Medela breast shields are so much better, the angles are flanged and it makes them very comfortable.
Well, on my sixth day back at work, the Lansinoh broke. Don't ask what went wrong, it would turn on but the suction gave out after every cycle. I freaked out, called a lactation queen friend of mine, and she let me borrow her Medela pump-in-style.
That was a GREAT pump. Faster duty cycle, stronger, easier adjustments, and it came in a nice little bag all self-contained.
By this time I had used two pumps and understood that used ones were really no big deal. Part of it is that I knew how they worked now... milk doesn't go inside the pump at all, or inside the tubes, it's all very nifty. The milk goes past the tube providing the suction, straight into the bottle. It does not run through the pump. So when you have a used pump, you have a lot of parts that do not and never have touched milk.
On top of that, after you've breastfed a little you stop thinking of breastmilk as a "bodily fluid" and think of it more as a food... the thought of even using attachments that another woman has used isn't that gross anymore, it's like using a fork at a restaurant that someone else ate from. It's been through a dishwasher since then so who cares?
So even though I'd already fixed my Lansinoh (there was a loose weird plastic part inside that I'd found when I took it apart) I bid on a Medela Pump-n-Style advanced on ebay. Not only was it a great pump, but it came with everything in the world I needed... car adapter, battery pack, storage bottles! I'd already spent $30 on storage bottles because the Lansinoh only comes with two to pump into.
Anyway sorry to be so long winded about this. The moral of this story is that:
1) I would not recommend the Lansinoh Double Electric pump, sorry to say it.
2) A $300 pump that you get used for $70 is better than a $150 pump you get new for $150.
3) Craigslist is better than ebay... even cheaper, and no shipping.
The year after I had my baby and spent all this money on pumps, the IRS came out and said we could use HSA money to buy them. Freaking hell... that might have kept me from cheaping out in the first place! Hopefully maybe it'll save some of you. For the rest of you non-HSA ladies, you have my story, take it as you please.