More Resources Which Electric Breast Pump Should I Choose?

Which Electric Breast Pump Should I Choose?

"Should I choose an open system or closed system electric breast pump?" It"s a question we often hear from new moms, and most if not all of the time the answer is the same.

Limerick"s pumps are closed system, preventing milk from getting into the motor of the pump. The filter on the kit prevents milk from getting into the motor of the pump, minimizing the risk of bacterial growth.  Limerick"s pumps do not draw in room air to create the vacuum - instead it draws the air from the bottle attached to the breast cup assembly, making it a completely closed system. Condensation may appear in the tubing when pumping, however, we have a drying mode on the pump to dry the tubing that helps prevent mold from growing in the tubing.

An open-system electric breast pump also draws in room air, another source of potential contamination. Although open-system pumps come at a lower price point, they have more significant hygiene risks.

On the other hand, a closed system electric breast pump contains a barrier, which prevents an overflow of milk or any other outside substance from entering the pump system. We"ll talk more about closed system pumps and the unique Limerick closed system pump below.

Questions Moms Ask: "Should I choose an open system or closed system electric breast pump?"


Harmful germs can grow in the tubing and motor of the pump when milk backflows.  If this happens, you need to disinfect or replace your kit parts. If you have an open system electric breast pump and milk gets into the motor of the pump you may need to purchase a new pump. Babies can become ill from contaminated milk due to bacteria that grow on parts that haven"t been properly sanitized. Breast milk has natural protective properties which protect the milk from contamination with germs after it has been expressed; this is called its bactericidal capacity. Breast milk can also actively reduce some of these germs.

However, the bactericidal properties of breast milk don"t apply to all types of bacteria, such as cronobacter sakazakii. Many germs could come into contact with your breast pump. Some germs grow more rapidly than others, so keeping each part of your pump clean is essential. Of course, hand washing before and after pumping is also crucial.

Questions Moms Ask: "Should I choose an open system or closed system electric breast pump?"

Closed pump systems: safer for mom and baby

A closed system is sealed off from milk by a barrier, sometimes called overflow protection. This is the most hygienic form of pump, as the barrier prevents milk from flowing into the machine.

Double electric, closed system pumps are also referred to as hospital-grade pumps, as they can be safely shared between patients. Hospital-grade breast pumps are of the standard that you find in hospitals. As well as being safer, these pumps are more efficient - you can express more milk in a given session. They also require less effort than manual pumps, which is a definite advantage for new moms. You"re likely already going to be tired due to reduced sleep.

The Limerick double electric Joy pump uses advanced motor technology, which mimics the natural nursing rhythm of a baby, enabling greater expression of milk. The comfortable silicone cups sit gently against the breast and form to your unique body shape, meaning there is no irritation of the nipple.

Although closed pump systems are more expensive, they are much more hygienic, and may be covered by your insurance plan. Since the Affordable Care Act, women are entitled to breastfeeding support in an insurance plan, which includes a breast pump. However, be sure to check with your insurance provider which models you have access to under their health plan, as different health insurance plans cover different pumps. Check the terms and conditions of your particular plan.

Questions Moms Ask: "Should I choose an open system or closed system electric breast pump?"

Limerick hospital-grade electric breast pump - maximum hygiene and comfort

Closed-system breast pumps, such as the Limerick pumps available in our online shop, have a barrier between the tubing and the motor of the pump. The Limerick brand uses our unique ComfortTouch™ hospital-grade technology, which gives moms a comfortable and safe experience. Limerick pumps use rhythmic cycles of compression and vacuum, which imitate the baby"s natural feeding behavior, unlike the push and pull of other breast pumps. Our pump only draws air from the container attached to the breast cup assembly, reducing the risk of bacteria entering the pump mechanism.

In Limerick pumps, the vacuum is created by the electric breast pump itself, not by room air. The vacuum system includes a 1-micron filter. This minimizes the risk of germs or other infectious particles from entering the pump motor resulting in exhausted air being clean, as it has passed through this filter. 

Our ComfortTouch™ system includes a 1 micron filter, preventing milk from entering the pump"s motor, reducing the risk of mold growth in the pump itself. Therefore, Mom is at a significantly lower risk of disease and developing conditions such as mastitis.

Questions Moms Ask: "Should I choose an open system or closed system electric breast pump?"

Useful information for new moms

Breastfeeding might seem stressful at first: what if my nipples are the "wrong" shape, such as inverted nipples, and my baby doesn"t latch properly? Many women feel anxious about breastfeeding and/or pumping, which can affect milk production and let down. New moms can feel that their milk supply is insufficient when the underlying cause of not letting down is a simple issue that is easily resolved.

A relaxed frame of mind is essential for milk release, so the important thing is to find a quiet, relaxing and comfortable setting. However, if you have any concerns, speak with a lactation consultant, other physicians, or a local nurse practitioner, who will all be happy to answer any questions during pregnancy and after birth.

"Questions Moms Ask: "Should I choose an open system or closed system electric breast pump?"

Peace of mind and breastfeeding

Endocrinology refers to the study of hormones and how they are released. When it comes to breastfeeding, when a woman anticipates her baby"s next feeding, a hormone called oxytocin is released, and this causes the milk making cells known as Alveoli contract and release milk, so your baby is able to receive the milk from their mother.

When the milk is released and starts to flow this is known as your letdown reflex.  Ways to encourage your let down are finding a comfortable quiet place to feed or pump. Gently tapping your breast with your fingertips prior to feeding or pumping can help stimulate your letdown.

Also, taking 2-3 slow deep breaths, in through your nose and slowly blowing out the air through your mouth, when the baby first latches or when you start pumping can help encourage your letdown.

Skin-on-skin contact, and closeness between mom and baby, are important for the letdown reflex - loving feelings about her baby, and seeing or touching her baby, help with milk release.

Questions Moms Ask: "Should I choose an open system or closed system electric breast pump?"

Soft silicone cups

Limerick breast pumps are designed to help with mom"s frame of mind. Our breast pump technology is more comfortable than any other product on the market, allowing mom to feel relaxed and encouraged to pump more frequently. Frequent pumping is important for milk production since our bodies work on a "supply and demand" basis - the more completely the breasts are emptied, the more milk they produce.

Our soft silicone cups are one size fits all. They adapt to the shape of each woman"s breasts, allowing for a comfortable experience.

The Limerick pump even gives positive affirmations, encouraging mom to feel relaxed and at ease, which is crucial for milk letdown during pumping sessions.

Questions Moms Ask: "Should I choose an open system or closed system electric breast pump?"

Designed with mom and baby in mind

A woman-owned company, Limerick prides itself on supporting new moms and parents. We offer hospital-grade breast pumps for personal use, providing new moms with the most efficient and comfortable pumping