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The success of the Philips AVENT manual breast pumps and feedback gathered from mums led to the development of this award winning electronic version in 2004. The breast pump consists of a motor unit connected to a plastic funnel with a cushion on it which massages and stimulates the breasts by mimicking the baby’s suckling motion. The pumping action is controlled by a silicone diaphragm stated to provide a 100% guaranteed vacuum. There are no pre-set pumping rhythms. After a few manual pumps to select your rhythm you push a button on the motor unit and then the electronic pump takes over. I frequently found that my ‘required’ pumping rhythm changed at different times of the day so this was a very useful feature.
The breast pump can be operated by mains power, by battery pack or manually making it very flexible for different locations. In addition, the battery pack has a useful light indicator to let you know if charge is running low.
Philips also produces a double version of this breast pump.
What we love
This breast pump enabled me to express enough milk to regularly supplement and replace many breastfeeds with EBM, giving me the freedom to go out as well as give both my babies extra top-up feeds. I used it at least once a day for 6 months with each child. The massaging cushions and rhythm worked particularly well on the one breast that seemed harder to feed from naturally. The fact that the pump is interchangeable with all other AVENT parts e.g. bottles, Via containers, the Magic Cups and steriliser made it all so convenient. Although more expensive than other pumps, it was cheaper than buying formula! I also used it at the end of breastfeeding, to avoid breast engorgement.
What to watch out for
The large number of separate parts can be hard to assemble at first, but you quickly get the hang of it. It can also be difficult to detach the motor unit from the bottle when you finish expressing and milk can drip out. The pump is quite noisy, but I understand that’s the case with most electronic breast pumps. Unfortunately, at one point, the pump’s motor started to fail and the vacuum rhythm became erratic. I have read other reviews mentioning the same problem. However, the AVENT helpline were great and quickly replaced my pump even though the warranty had just expired. For an expensive pump, it’s a shame it doesn’t come with a travel bag – although the DUO version does come with one.
Who is the Philips AVENT Single Electronic Breast pump best for?
This pump is best for someone who needs to regularly express and is willing to spend more money so that the process is as efficient as possible e.g. if your baby cannot feed naturally or if you need to express at work.
A well made, ergonomic product that transforms the way you can express milk and the time it takes to do so. It is comfortable to use, and pumps large quantities of milk, albeit noisily! The pieces can be tricky to put together at first and you may find it fiddly to detach the power unit without a few spillages, but these issues do not detract from its overall effectiveness.