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Thread: Medela pump in style tote losing suction during pumping

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2012

    Default Medela pump in style tote losing suction during pumping

    So this has been going on for awhile now and I have had 3 replacements from the company and still having the same issue. I thought maybe I am missing something and somebody on here can help me out.

    My first pump that I bought at BRU lasted about 2 months until I noticed that after 8 minutes of pumping I felt less suction. So I turned it up and the suction actually got worse and the motor started making this weird grinding noise and sounded like it was dying plus the whole faceplate was moving back and forth. I called Medela customer service and they walked me through some troubleshooting and nothing worked to get the problem fixed. They shipped me a new pump. Awesome. That lasted 1 month before it "broke". Again, another pump.

    This week it "broke" during work (it was my first week back) and they sent me another pump. My first time using the brand new pump and it did the same thing! Then the next time it only lasted 2 minutes before losing its suction. It still sucks but it is very very weak and again when I turn it up the suction doesn't increase and the motor sounds like it is dying. I am getting very frustrated. I work several 12 hour days back to back and need to pump 4 times a day.

    I have checked to make sure the tubing was firmly on and didn't have milk inside, I tried using different membranes and have inspected all my parts and didn't notice anything unusual. I do notice a hissing sound coming from the middle of the raised dome on the faceplate where the middle yellow piece connects. When I press on it the hissing stops but it doesn't change the suction. I double pump so the bottom of the yellow piece is always in place.

    I have about 8 sets of connectors, membranes, valves and flanges so I have used them all at different times. I do get condensation in the tubing but I always have without causing problems and I let it run a few minutes after I am done and it goes away. At work, as per a suggestion from a friend, I fridge all my parts between sessions and reuse them as I don't have the time to wash everything there. I thought that may be the problem so when I am home I used clean parts completely and I still had the same thing happen so I don't think that's the issue.

    Anybody else had this issue and offer a fix? I just cannot believe that 3 different pumps from the same company are giving me such a hard time! I am hardpressed to believe that a brand new pump would arrive with a broken motor?? I don't know if I am doing something wrong or there is another issue.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Northern Cal.

    Default Re: Medela pump in style tote losing suction during pumping

    Whoa. I am baffled. Does it seem like the hissing is air escaping from the seal? Because that would definitely kill the suction. I used this pump for months and didn't have this issue. So strange that you had it with different pumps.

    You can call me JoMo!

    Mom to baby boy Joe, born 5/4/09 and breastfed for more than two and a half years, and baby girl Maggie, born 7/9/12.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Ann Arbor MI

    Default Re: Medela pump in style tote losing suction during pumping

    I have the exact same pump and have problems with it also. I can pump on one side for more than 30 min and get less then an ounce. But I use my hand pump and get about an ounce every 4 minutes. I can pump 5 ounces no problem. I want to love this pump its so expensive but I cant. If you find out what was wrong with yours could you let me know? Please, thank you.

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