This post is sponsored by 1 Natural Way.
Did you know that breast pump parts stop working well over time, resulting in a loss of suction? This is due to microscopic tears, stretching, and residue building up. Buying replacement breast pump parts can be expensive, but you may be able to save money using your health insurance.
Here’s everything you need to know about how you may be able to get free or discounted pump parts through 1 Natural Way’s Milkzoom™ resupply program!
Why replace pump parts?
Breast pump parts such as valves and breast shields experience wear and tear over time.
They can become torn and overstretched, and residue can build up after a while. This can potentially cause a decrease in milk production if pump parts aren’t regularly replaced.
(Personally, I have been shocked at the difference in suction after switching out my valves in the past. It can make a huge difference!)
How often should pump parts be replaced?
This depends on which breast pump you have, as well as how frequently you use the parts to pump. It also depends on the individual piece, as some pieces (such as valves) need to be replaced more frequently than others.
Let’s look at Spectra breast pump parts as an example. Spectra recommends replacing parts on the following schedule:
- Duckbills: Pumping more than 3 times per day – every 2 months / pumping 1-3 times per day – every 3 months
- Backflow protectors: Pumping more than 3 times per day – every 3 months / pumping 1-3 times per day – every 6 months
- Tubing: Replace as needed
- Breast shields: Pumping more than 3 times per day – every 6 months / pumping 1-3 times per day – as needed
Below are some general guidelines to follow as far as how often to replace each piece:
Additionally, it’s also a good idea to have extra parts on hand – you never know when your cat will eat your tubing or you’ll lose a duckbill down the garbage disposal.
Challenges with replacing pump parts
Two of the main challenges to replacing pump parts include remembering that it needs to be done, as well as the expense of regularly buying new pump parts.
Remembering to buy new parts on a regular basis
As a new parent, you have a lot going on and a lot to keep track of when it comes to your baby. Then add in exclusive pumping and everything that comes with it (pumping on a schedule, managing your milk, cleaning your parts), and it’s easy for things to get forgotten.
I did an unscientific poll on instagram asking when people replaced their pump parts:
Only 12% said that they replaced their pump parts regularly, while 24% did it whenever they remembered.
The majority (64%) only replaced pump parts when they started to notice a difference in suction. That means that their milk supply may have been impacted by waiting to get new parts. (Sometimes, the decrease in suction strength is gradual enough that you don’t notice it at first.)
The other issue is that breast pump replacement parts aren’t cheap.
As an example, a replacement set of Spectra pump parts on their website would cost around $30-35 for a new set of backflow protectors, breast shields, and valves. (Other pumps may be less and others may be more. For example, Elvie replacement parts currently cost over $100 with the additional storage bottles.)
You may be able to get a slightly cheaper set on Amazon or at Target, but the lowest price I could find was $27 (including parts from third party breast pump part manufacturers like Nenesupply or Maymom).
Depending on how often you replace your pump parts, this can add up quickly.
I did another unscientific poll on instagram asking how much people spent on replacement breast pump parts.
Of those that responded, 12% spent more than $100 and 16% spent more than $150.
One solution to both of these issues – remembering to replace your parts and the expense – is enrolling in a breast pump resupply program.
Insurance coverage and breast pump resupply programs
If you live in the United States, your health insurance may cover part or all of the cost of replacement parts. However, many people don’t know they have this coverage and that it can save them a lot of money. (The average savings per month of this coverage is $71.33 with Milkzoom.)
Here’s another unscientific poll:
Here you can see that while many people do have full or partial coverage, 47% haven’t even looked into whether they have coverage.
With its Milkzoom™ program, 1 Natural Way allows you to easily:
- Find out if you have coverage for replacement breast pump parts, and
- Take advantage of any coverage you have (paying any difference, if applicable).
How Milkzoom™ (1 Natural Way’s replacement program) works
Here’s how it works – once a month, you’ll get a reminder email from 1 Natural Way. You’ll have the option to:
- Order new parts, if you need them
- Skip a month/decline to order new parts if you don’t
- Drop out of the program completely (if you’ve stopped breastfeeding or don’t want to continue)
If you decide to order new parts, you’ll just select the model of breast pump you’re using and your breast shield size, along with other basic information.
If your replacement parts are fully covered, that’s all you need to do. If they are partially covered, you’d pay the difference. Shipping is free.
1 Natural Way will work with you and your insurance company to determine exactly what your coverage is. They will also get the prescription from your doctor and file the claim – you won’t need to talk to your insurance company at all.
1 Natural Way will send you authentic parts from your breast pump manufacturer, and will include storage bottles or bags if your plan covers it.
How to sign up for Milkzoom™
You can sign up here by filling out this simple form. Have your insurance card and doctor’s information (name and phone number) on hand.
After you fill out the form, 1 Natural Way will find out what your coverage includes and work to get you set up.
Do you have any questions about breast pump resupply programs or replacing your parts using your insurance coverage? Ask them in the comments!