When you are pumping milk for your baby, it is important to clean your pumping accessories properly, whether at work or at home.

Items to bring with you in addition to your pump kit
  • Mild, unscented dish soap (washing up liquid).
  • Bottle brush.
  • Wash basin (many hospitals provide these to their patients); two if you can – one for washing and the other for drying.
  • Gauze receiving blanket to cover parts loosely as they dry. They allow air to circulate and keep airborne particles from getting on your pump parts.
Before beginning to pump
  • Make sure you wash your hands with soap and water.
  • Have a clean surface on which to assemble your pump parts, wiping with a disinfectant wipe if needed. Another option is to use the basin you will bring for washing your pump parts instead of a common area.
  • If you are sharing a pump – for example, your employer provides the pump for your use at work – also wipe it down with disinfectant wipes before and after use.
After pumping at work
  • Wipe down the pump and surface it sits on, especially if sharing an employer provided pump with others.
  • If you see moisture inside the pump tubing, keep it connected and the pump running while you wash the other part so that the tubing can dry out. This prevents mold from forming in the tubing.
  • Take the pump accessories apart and rinse under running water.
  • In a plastic basin that you will bring from home, wash all parts in hot, soapy water using a mild, unscented dish soap. A brush designed for cleaning infant feeding bottles may be helpful.
  • Rinse items under running water or in the basin of clean water.
  • Place all pump parts on paper towels while you dry the wash basin or . . .
  • Line the bottom of the second basin with paper towels and place parts there to dry.
  • Cover with gauze cloth or receiving blanket.
After pumping at home
  • Follow steps above OR
  • Use your dishwasher for all parts that are dishwasher safe.
    • Place small items in a closed-top basket or small mesh laundry bag.
    • Add soap.
    • Run dishwasher using hot water and a heated drying cycle.
  • Remove items with clean hands and place on paper towels in a clean basin.
  • Cover with gauze cloth or receiving blanket to dry.
  • The US Center of Disease Control recommends sanitizing pump parts once a day for any baby under three months of age, was born prematurely, or is ill.
  • The most common methods:
    • Commercial bottle sterilizer – follow manufacturer’s instruction carefully and completely.
    • Sanitizing setting on a dishwasher – follow manufacturer’s instruction carefully and completely.
    • Boiling water method:
      • Bring large pot of water to a full boil.
      • Separate all pump parts and place carefully in the boiling water.
      • Boil for 10 minutes, stirring periodically to make sure no parts are sticking to a “hot spot” at the bottom of the pot.
      • After 10 minutes, remove carefully from the water using tongs and place pieces on paper towels in a basin to air dry.
Between pumping sessions
  • Once parts are fully dry, store all parts in a clean protected area.
  • This can be a plastic tub with a tight fitting lid or a large plastic bag that seals tight.

For additional information – Check the guidelines of your particular pump’s manufacturer or go to www.cdc.gov/healthywater/hygiene/healthychildcare/infantfeeding/breastpump.html

Pumping article