Knowledge Base

How Many Watts Does a Breast Pump Use? (Power Consumption Test)

By:Michael Johns

On this page, you will find out how many watts a breast pump draws.

If you’re looking to use your breast pump in the car or while you don’t have access to mains electricity you’ll need to know the power consumption. Knowing this allows you to correctly run AC pumps or recharge battery operated models. 

Below we will discuss and test breast pump wattage, explain how to work it out for yourself, and calculate the total electricity required.

How Many Watts is a Breast Pump?

The average breast pump uses between 15 and 30 watts.

The exact number depends on the size and model of your breast pump. It all comes down to the power cable or charging adaptor you are using. The majority of charging adaptors for breast pumps are rated to 20W or less. While pumps that require constant AC power can be rated up to 30W.

How to Find Out Your Breast Pump Wattage

There’s 3 ways you can work out the wattage of a breast pump.

  1. Check Product Specification

The quickest way is to look at the breast pump’s specification. The watts (W) is usually written on a sticker on the base of the appliance. If not, you can check the user manual or the manufacturer’s website for technical details.

breast pump power specs
  1. Use a Wattmeter

A wattmeter is brilliant for getting a live wattage reading and tracking total energy usage of any appliance. You can plug it into your breast pump to get instant information. 

I used one to test a Medela breast pump which gave a live reading of 15.3W.

breast pump watt test
  1. Wattage Formula or Calculator

If you know the amperage and voltage of your breast pump you can use this to find the maximum watt rating. Simply use the formula Amps x Volts = Watts. Or you can head over to the ‘Watt Calculator’ to work this out.

Breast Pump Wattage Examples

Let’s take a look at specific examples of how many watts a breast pump draws. Below is a collection of modern breast pumps with their listed power ratings.

Breast Pump ModelPower Rating (Watts)
NCVI Double Electric Breast Pump10
Nuby Double or Single Breast Pump15
Mam 2in1 Single Breast Pump 15
Medela Symphony Breast Pump25
Medela Pump in Style Advanced Power Adaptor18
HKY Adapter for Spectra24

As you can see, the power ratings vary between different breast pumps. So you should take the time to check your own appliance.

How Much Electricity Does a Breast Pump Use?

You can use breast pump wattage to work out how much electricity it uses. Plus this can be useful in understanding how much it costs to run your breast pump.

A watt (W) is a measurement of power at a single point in time. A watt-hour (Wh) is the total amount of electricity used in an hour. For example, a breast pump drawing 20W would use 20Wh when running for an hour.

Happily, electricity bills are recorded in kilowatt-hours (kWh). A kilowatt is simply 1000 watts. So a 20W breast pump running for 1 hour uses 0.02kWh.

In reality, you charge or use a breast pump for a total of 1 hour a day. This means a breast pump uses about 20Wh or 0.02kWh electricity a day. That’s 0.6kWh a month and 7.3kWh a year. 

That’s a rough electricity cost of $0.09 a month or $1.09 a year to pump for 1 hour every day.

Using a Breast Pump Off-Grid

If you’re planning to use your breast pump in a car or off-grid situation like a power outage, the information above is important. It allows you to select the correct electrical products and know how long you can run them for.

To breast pump in a car during road trips, you can use a power inverter. It plugs into your 12V cigarette outlet to give you access to AC electricity. 

To make sure everything runs smoothly you should check two things on this equipment – wattage capacity and total energy capacity. 

Your power source, like an inverter, should have a wattage capacity of at least 20% more than your breast pump. This ensures it will be able to deliver enough power as they are never 100% efficient. A 100W inverter should do a good job and is the smallest size you can buy.

Secondly, you need to ensure your energy source, like a battery, has enough energy to run the breast pump for the required amount of time. In a car, you should keep the engine running to avoid depleting the starter battery.

If you have another deep cycle battery, like in an RV, it will use about 20Wh electricity for each hour. This is the equivalent to 1.6Ah on a 12V battery.

How Many Watts Does a Breast Pump Use Summary

I hope you now have a clear understanding of how many watts a breast pump uses.

The good news is that these devices are very low powered. Most modern breast pumps are battery powered which makes it easy when traveling. The only thing you need to worry about is recharging. This is a task that doesn’t always require access to mains electricity. In a car, you can use an inverter or you could use a portable power station for trips like camping.