Top positive review
1,289 people found this helpful
Easy to use hand pump!
on April 14, 2005
I am a first time mom and I exclusively breastfeed my 3 month old. I have a Medela Pump in Style Advanced, which I love for work. However it isn't that convenient for at home use and travel. For one, the Pump in Style has a lot of parts and tubing that need to be connected. You need to plug it in - or use a TON of batteries. It is heavy and it is loud. I first noticed that I needed a manual pump when my husband and I made two plane trips with the baby. I didn't want to drag the pump along with all of the other baby equipment I needed so I left it home. I brought the bicycle pump style manual pump that Medela includes with the pump in style. I managed to get a full bottle fairly easily, but the pump really tired my arms out and it was loud. So I began shopping for an easy to use manual pump. I heard a lot about the Avent Isis, but not much about any other pump. While online, I came across this Medela Pump and decided to give it a try for a few reasons:
(1) The Isis has a lot of parts and reviewers say it is a pain to clean. The Harmony has fewer parts making it easier to clean.
(2) We don't use Avent bottles, we use Dr. Browns. The Dr. Brown's bottles we already have (narrow neck) fit right onto the Medela pumps.
(3) The Harmony takes the same parts as the Pump in Style so no need to worry about keeping two sets of replacement parts.
I have used the pump a few times so far and it has been great. I easily can fill one of the Medela bottles they include with the pump (they include 2) and it is so easy and quiet to use. I can use it anywhere. Since the handle swivels and you can pump one handed, it can also be used while you nurse your baby. I haven't done that yet with this pump, but I tried it with the other manual I have and I can tell that it will be MUCH easier with the Harmony. Since there are so few parts to clean and I don't need to plug in and play with tubing, pumping at home is less of a hassle. Plus, you can easily throw this pump into a purse, along with a small cooler pack to take with you. No need to look for a place to set up a huge electric pump!
If you notice you don't get much suction or you have lost suction, be sure to take the pump apart and make sure everything is aligned properly. Make sure the membrane is firmly pressed into the valve. Also in the handle, there is a silicone insert with a yellow oval valve inside. Make sure that the yellow oval is properly aligned with the silicone insert.
In any case, I definitely recommend this pump for at home use and as a supplement to the Pump in Style. It is so easy to use, quiet, and compact for travel.
EDITED TO ADD: I just had a problem with my harmony - the tiny white rubber ring, necessary to create suction, broke off from the handle. I called customer service and they are sending me four replacement rings at no charge. Medela was very nice about it and easy to deal with.
ANOTHER UPDATE: I have now had my harmony for 4 months. At this point, I would lower my rating to 4 stars. It still is an effective pump, but I am not fully satisfied with the quality. Mid-use, the stem on the handle completely snapped off. However, Medela customer service was great - rather than simply replacing the faulty part, Medela sent me a brand new pump at no charge. They seem to have corrected some design flaws in the new pump - the stem on my new pump is now MUCH shorter, so I don't think the stem will snap off like it did on the original pump I bought. Only time will tell if the redesigned Medela Harmony is of better quality.