The quietest breast pump will allow you to express milk quietly whether at work or at home without causing unwanted noises to your workmates or family members.
Breast pumps have become a favorite tool for 21 century moms.
According to a study published on National Center for Biotechnology Information website, 85% of breastfeeding mothers (with infants aged 1.5-4.5 months) have at one time used breast pump to express milk for an extended period. (Source)
While a manual breast pump is definitely quieter than electric models, it’s more time consuming.
If you need to express milk faster and discreetly, a quiet electric breast pump will do the trick. In this guide, we shall be reviewing some of the best quiet breast pump on the market today.
What is a Quiet Breast Pump?
A quiet breast pump is a mechanical device used by lactating mothers to extract milk from their breasts without creating unwanted noises.
Unfortunately, the noise generated by a breast pump, especially electric types, can be too annoying, wake up your sleeping baby, and result in sleepless nights for your partner and everyone else in your house.
All breast pumps come with a shield covering the breast and a container to collect the breast milk. If you’re not sure the best type of pump you should use, it’s important to consult a lactation consultant.
There are two types of breast pumps:
Manual Pumps: this breast pump work by hand; this means you have to manually use your hands to operate the pump and create a suction that draws milk from your breasts.
The best part with manual breast pumps is that you can use them anywhere as they don’t require electricity. They are good if you don’t intend to pump regularly.
Powered Breast Pumps: this type of pump uses batteries or electricity, and it’s equipped with a motor that helps create a suction to draw milk from your breasts.
Powered breast pumps are available in single and double kinds. Single allows you to pump one breast simultaneously, while double will enable you to work on both breasts simultaneously.
Double breast pumps are more efficient than single and manual pumps.
Why Do You Need a Quiet Breast Pump?
There are several reasons why every pumping mother needs a quiet breast pump. According to Ginna Wall, the head of UW Medical Center’s lactation services, a breastfeeding mother should consider a breast pump if she plans regular separations of more than 3-4 hours from a baby.
A manual breast pump is ultimately quiet and will allow you to pump discreetly without attracting unwanted attention, especially from workmates.
Unfortunately, workplaces come with very short breaks, and with a manual pump, you could find yourself behind a work schedule.
If you’re anything like my wife, she has to work nightshifts for 4-5 hours, so the baby is with the nanny. My wife has to find a way to pump without waking up the baby.
If you travel regularly, you will need a pump that allows you to pump milk quickly and quietly. Though most airports have spots designed for nursing and pumping moms.
Electric breast pumps are efficient, but unfortunately, they are also loud. Some manufacturers have resolved using sound muffling techniques to create quiet electric breast pumps for working, traveling, and busy moms.
A quiet breast pump not only allows you to pump discreetly but also gives you peace of mind.
What Is the Best Quietest Breast Pump?
The best quietest breast pump from medela is the Medela Sonata Smart Double Electric Breast Pump.
It has a noise decibel rating of 43.8 decibels. The double breast pump is carefully designed for comfort and convenience of both the mother and her child.
It features 2-phase expression technology– stimulation and let down modes.
It’s a smart breast pump- meaning it can connect to MyMedela app for unlimited access to real-time tracking, personalized pumping, and a variety of breast milk feeding resources.
It comes with a battery that will allow you to pump on the road or even in the event of a blackout. The battery is powerful enough to last for up to 3-4 pumping sessions.
On the downside, most moms have complained how tiring it can be to assemble this breast pump. Not to mention the 14 pieces you need to wash and pack every time you want to pump.
Quietest Breast Pumps on the Market
While Sonata is the quietest breast pump on this guide, there are other options you can choose from. Below is a detailed review of other 5 quiet breast pumps you can choose from.
|Breast Pump Name
|Sound Rating (Decibels)
|Medela Pump in Style Advanced
|Ardo Calypso Breast Pump
|Spectra – S2 Plus Electric Breast Milk Pump
Quietest Medela Breast Pumps
According to a report conducted by a third-party test lab under ISO 3744:2010 for Medela, it was discovered that the Medela brand designed 5 electric breast pumps that produce noise quieter than normal conversations with some quieter than the average home noise.
That’s something decent considering that all-electric breast pumps have a motor that helps create a suction force.
As we all know, motors are notoriously known for being loud and finding a quieter motor than normal conversation is incredibly wonderful.
According to the report, the test was done on Medela 2-Phase Expression Technology with the pumps set at maximum setting in the Expression phase.
The Medela Symphony is a hospital grade breast pump designed to maintain a steady milk supply thanks to Medela’s 2-Phase Expression Technology.
It has noise levels of 49.2 decibels. The 2-phase technology helps mimic baby’s nursing rhythms hence expressing 18% more milk than when using other regular breast pumps.
This pump requires Medela Symphony double kit for use. The kit is sold separately and includes all components to help you get started including membranes, valves, breast shields, tubes, and bottles.
Additionally, it comes with a Symphony 2.0 Program Card that stores all the information regarding your pumping program.
What in the box? Symphony breast pump, container stand, Symphony 2.0 Program Card quick start card, Instructions manual, and protector for card/cord.
Medela Freestyle Breast Pump
This is a double electric pump designed for daily use. It comes with two personal fit breast size for comfort.
Additionally, it’s equipped with a lightweight motor making it highly portable. A rechargeable battery option is available allowing on-the-go pumping.
The display features on this unit include, a time, memory button, and backlight. The pump is made in Switzerland, while the accessories are made in China, USA, Canada, and Taiwan.
A one-touch button simplifies the pumping session. The best part with this unit is that you can pump one breast at a time.
Freemie Liberty Hands-Free Breast Pump
This pump is ultra-quiet such that you wont notice when its on or off. Additionally, it’s also lightweight and hence portability isn’t an issue.
According to users, this is one of the easiest to clean breast pump on the market. And the best part is that it’s quiet as well as inexpensive.
As its name suggests, it’s a handsfree pump and hence you can move around and perform other household chores when pumping.
A minor pro with this pump is that you can easily recharge it using a Micro-USB charger.
One major downside is how hard it is to set up this breast pump. Users have complained how long the tubing that connects the pump is- hence not discreet under clothing unlike most handsfree breast pumps.
Ardo Calypso Breast Pump (50decibels)
The Calypso Double Plus is a quiet breast pump that boasts hospital grade technology. It’s vouched for by 97% of midwives, made with BPA free materials and it’s FDA-approved.
It’s boasts 64 independent vacuum and cycle settings, 3 different sizes of breast shields, Opti flow, active massage inserts, to ensure gentle, comfortable and satisfying experience.
It uses a vacuum seal technology that ensure that the system is completely closed.
Thus, no milk can enter the pump or tubes thus preventing contamination, bacteria and pathogens from contaminating the milk. For this reason, no cleaning of the pump and tubes necessary.
Its equipped with simple and true control for gentle and also powerful suction. The pump weighs only 1 pounds making it highly portable. It has an AA battery option for expression on the go.
Elvie Pump Double Silent Wearable Breast Pump with App
Elvie is the lightest, smallest and quietest wearable pump on the market that allows you to pump on your own terms either at work, home, or on the go.
With this breast pump, you can lead your “normal life” participate in meetings, go outside all while you pump.
It utilizes a revolutionary technology that eliminates noise allowing you to pump discreetly anytime, anywhere.
The best part is that this pump is wearable- you can wear it inside your normal bra. Additionally, its easy to clean- only has 5 parts to clean and assemble.
It’s a smart pump that can connect to Elvie Pump app to monitor pumping in real time and track all sessions for each breast.
It’s highly responsive and will automatically switch from Stimulation to Expression when it detects letdown and shutdown when the bottle is full.
Inside the box you find Elvie Pump (Double): 4 Bottles (150ml/5oz), 2 Hubs (pump mechanism), 4 Storage Lids, 2 Breast Shields (28mm), 2 Breast Shields (24mm), 4 Valves, 4 Spouts, 4 Bra Adjusters, 4 Seals, 2 USB Charging Cable, Instructions for Use and 1 Carry Bag.
The First Years Double Electric Breast Pump
The The First Years Double Electric Breast Pump is electric or battery operated pump for discreet pumping anytime and anywhere.
It comes with comfortable flexi-fit breast shift for a comfortable fit during pumping. The breast pump also features a unique handle that allows the user to use one hand when double pumping.
It has 8-adjustable suction level allowing you to choose level that best for you. Additionally, it comes with baby tote bag making it highly portable.
The pump also includes two 4 ounces bottles with storage lids and slow flow nipples.
Bellababy Quiet Double Electric Breast Pump
The Bellababy is a double breast pump designed for moms on the go. Whether returning to work, going on a family trip, or relaxing outdoor, then this pump has got you covered.
The pump produces less than 45 decibels, making it a great competitor to the Medela Sonata and an ideal option for moms who prefer anything other than Medela pumps.
It’s equipped with a built-in sizeable Li-ion battery that can be charged by a power bank, making it as highly portable as a manual breast pump.
Additionally, it’s equipped with a soft massage cushion made of soft silicone material. The soft cushion imitates a baby-sucking pattern, allowing you to express comfortably and pain-free.
The best part with this pump is that it features 4 different modes with 9 suction levels allowing you to choose a mode that suits you.
- 2- storage bags
- Built-in battery
- 4 modes and 9 suction levels
- Quiet operation at 45 decibels
The good: The pump is ideal for outdoor use, and the suction is amazing. In addition, it’s highly affordable and relatively quiet.
The downside: unfortunately, you have to cycle through all the suctions to get back to 1. This means you have to unplug it to get the suction lower. Additionally, this pump isn’t the quietest but also not the loudest.
Spectra – S2 Plus Electric Breast Milk Pump (45 decibels)
One unique feature you will find in the quiet Spectra – S2 Plus Electric Breast Milk Pump is the Natural Nursing Technology. It’s a combination of gentle vibrations with soothing suckling action to help stimulate milk production. This mimics the natural way a baby nurse promotes a comfortable pumping experience.
The breast pump is equipped with an ultra-quiet motor that operates at 45 decibels which is as quiet as the hush of a library.
Additionally, the backflow protector helps protect your breast milk from bacteria. Other unique features include a night light that allows you to pump at any hour of the night and adjustable suction levels to help you find a perfect spot that mimics natural milk flow.
You can switch between single or double pumping, allowing for flexibility. The pump is also highly portable, weighing only 3 pounds. You get a 2 years warranty on the pump and a 90-day guarantee on the accessories.
Lansinoh Smartpump (52.8 Decibels)
The Lansinoh Smart pump is the quietest breast pump designed by the Lansinoh brand producing 52.8 decibels.
This allows you to pump breast milk discreetly and comfortably anywhere. The pump is compatible with the Baby 2.0 app, which connects via Bluetooth, allowing you to track your pumping sessions.
In addition, it features a customizable setting and a built-in memory allowing you to start your subsequent pumping session by simply a push of the button.
- 8 adjustable hospital strength suction
- 2 mode -expression and let down
- 3 pumping styles
Willow Wearable Breast Pump
The Willow Wearable Breast Pump gives a quieter operation while at the same time providing you a soothing pumping experience with maximum milk output.
It massages your breasts, guaranteeing you a comfortable experience. The pump features different settings allowing you to find a suction strength and frequency perfect for your breasts.
Additionally, the unit is lightweight and compact, making it travel-friendly. It weighs only 1 pound, and it’s small enough to fit in your backpack, making it ideal for moms on the go, at work, or at home.
- FDA approved
- Lightweight (1 pound)
- Completely Closed System
- BPA free
Quietest Breast Pump Buyer Guide
There are various factors that you need to consider when buying a breast pump. Below are some of the most important factor to put into consideration in order to get yourself a pump that meets your specific needs.
The first crucial factor in this case is the noise levels. A quiet breast pump should be quieter than background music or normal conversation. (Source)
The quietest breast pump is Medela Sonata Smart Double Electric Breast Pump. The pump has sound decibel ratings of 43 dB and can be compared to average home noise.
You can also choose another model from the list if Medela Sonata doesn’t sound like your ideal breast pump.
Performance and maintenance
Your ideal pump should be portable, lightweight, and compact. You don’t want a pump that will eat up much space or that’s weighty.
Additionally, every pump requires maintenance after every use. If you’re a busy mom, I’d recommend you to opt for hospital grade pumps as they don’t require much cleaning and are easy to maintain.
Single or Double
If you won’t be regularly pumping, you will need a single breast pump. However, if you’ll be pumping regularly pumping a double breast pump will get the job done.
According to research a double breast pump can deliver 18% more milk compared to manual or single pumps making it a perfect option for busy moms.
How to Make an Electric Breast Pump Quieter
My wife is a member of pumping moms forum and she’s been able to discover some clever ways moms use to reduce the amount of noise their pumps make.
I have highlighted in brief the different methods below as stated by different moms.
One mom found out that throwing a hand towel over the motor unit significantly reduced noise.
As we’ve seen in my previous posts, towels are good in absorbing sounds and it’s no surprise that they could reduce the amount of noise a breast pump makes.
Another mom stated that placing the pump in a travel bag or closing the lid also helped keep noise down allowing discreet pumping.
Using a thick blanket to cover the pump also helped some deal with the noise.
Additionally, you can place the breast pump in a cabinet or drawer or simply close the front flaps.
Closing the flaps seems to do the trick as about 10 moms vouched that this helped in noise reduction.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Is the Spectra Pump Quiet?
The Spectra – S2 Plus Electric Breast Milk Pump is quiet and discreet, allowing for a soothing and comfortable pumping experience.
The pump produces 45 decibels, making it quieter than the Medela Symphony while at the same time maintaining its hospital-grade qualities without sacrificing suction efficiency.
Is Spectra Quieter Than Medela?
Spectra S2 is quieter than all other Medela electric breast pumps except for Medela Sonata. The Sonata has a sound rating of 43.8 decibels, while the Spectra S2 is 45 decibels.
All other medela electric breast pumps have decibel ratings above 49 decibels.
Overall, Spectra has better features and is highly efficient and affordable than Medela hospital-grade pumps.
What Is the Quietest Handsfree Breast Pump?
The quietest handsfree breast pump is the Elvie Pump Double Silent Wearable Breast Pump. Unlike other regular breast pumps on the market, the Elvie wearable breast pump provides improved support.
Not only does it comfortably in nursing or a regular bra, but it also helps moms feel more at ease when pumping in public places.
Is Elvie Pump Really Quiet?
The Elvie Pump is one of the quietest breast pumps on the market today, and 96% of lactating agree that the pump is noiseless.
Since it’s a hands-free breast pump bra, it makes it difficult for anyone else to hear it working when inside your bra.
Final Thoughts on The Quietest Breast Pump
Breast pumps are a must-have device for any lactating working mother. Unfortunately, some of these pumps are loud, so some moms shy away from using them.
And even when you’re courageous to use a loud one in a public space, the noise limits you from pumping in the baby nursery.
According to the laid out federal law, you have the right to breaks and privacy whenever you need to pump at work. (Source)
A quiet breast pump is every pumping mother’s dream. These units operate quietly and quickly, giving you the privacy and discreetness, you desire.
My quietest picks are the Medela Sonata and the Elvie Breast Pump.
Meet Mike O’Connor, (a DIY enthusiast), living in Cincinnati, a city ranked as the noisiest in the USA.
As a work from home dad, I have a first hand experience of how noise can truly affect your well being.
Soundproofing isn’t something that should be taken as a hobby, it should be a skill that every homeowner should be equipped with.
Most of the work documented on this blog comes from purely first hand experience, and the products recommended work as indicated.