When I received my Spectra pump, I had a bunch of questions about it. The bottles looked different from the other bottles I was using. I initially started out using Medela bottles to pump and Dr. Brown bottles to feed. I realized it would be more efficient if I could use the bottles that came with the Spectra pump for both pumping and feeding.
I compared the types of bottles that I was using to come up with a system that worked for me. What worked the best for me was to pump into the Kiinde system or into Avent bottles.
If I needed to store milk in extra bottles, then I would pump into Medela or Dr. Brown bottles with an adapter.
My least favorite bottles for pumping were the Spectra bottles. I will go into more detail below.
Are Spectra And Medela Bottles Interchangeable?
No, the Spectra and Medela bottles are not directly interchangeable. However, an adapter is available which allows you to use the Spectra flanges with the Medela bottles. You can also use a different adapter to use the Medela flanges with the Spectra pump.
Spectra makes an adapter to use their pump with any narrow neck bottle. There are also several other adapters that are available on Amazon like this one.
If you’d like to check out the adapter I like and get some tips on how to use it, check out this article.
Which Bottles Are Compatible With A Spectra Pump?
- Avent Bottles
- MAM Bottles
- Kiinde (with included adapter)
- Medela bottles (with an adapter)
- Narrow neck Dr. Brown’s Bottles (with an adapter)
Avent bottles and MAM bottles will both screw on directly to the Spectra flanges. They are interchangeable with the Spectra bottles.
If you feed your baby milk out of the Avent bottles or MAM bottles, then you can screw these bottles onto the Spectra flanges. This will allow you to pump and feed with the same bottles.
The advantage of pumping and feeding out of the same bottles is that you do not lose drops of milk. Nobody wants to lose that liquid gold during the transfer from one type of bottle to another bottle.
This can also help to save you time because when you need a bottle, you can just grab it out of the refrigerator to warm up for the next feeding.
When my little one went to daycare, I had such a hard time finding baby bottle labels that worked well and would stand up to all of the soaking and washing.
After trying several different labels, I finally found some that worked amazing for over a year. Here is a link to my favorite bottle labels. Seriously, don’t waste your money on any of the other brands of bottle labels!
Can Spectra Work With Other Brands Of Bottles?
If you feed your baby out of a different type of bottle, like Dr. Brown’s bottles, then you may need to use an adapter. The adapter will allow you to pump and feed out of the same bottles. Here is a link to the adapter that I used (on Amazon).
I have used my Spectra pump with Kiinde bags and bottles, Medela bottles, and with the narrow neck Dr. Brown’s bottles.
I found that the Kiinde system is very convenient to use. It saved me a bunch of time. Once I started using it, I spent way less time cleaning a million bottle parts.
(If you ever used Dr. Brown’s bottles, you will understand what I mean.)
With the Kiinde system, you use the Spectra flange. Then, you connect the Spectra flange to the adapter. Finally, the Kiinde bag connects to the adapter. You bypass the Spectra bottles entirely with this system.
You can get a free sample of the Kiinde system here on my exclusive discounts page (just pay a small shipping fee).
Do Avent Bottles Fit Spectra S2?
Yes, Avent bottles fit directly onto the Spectra flanges without an adapter. Personally, I preferred to use Avent bottles when I intended to pump into bottles and I was not using the Kiinde system.
Are Spectra Bottles Accurate?
In my experience, the Spectra volume measurements were slightly inaccurate compared to the other bottles I used. I tested the volume measurements in the same Spectra bottles with three other types of bottles: Dr. Brown’s, Medela, and Avent bottles.
I measured 3 ounces (or 90 ml) into a Dr. Brown’s bottle, Spectra bottle, Avent bottle, and Medela bottle. Here is a chart with a comparison between the 4 bottles.
|Volume Measurement (ml)||
|100 ml||95 ml||
As you can see, the Spectra bottles overestimated the volume the most, by 10 ml (or ⅓ of an ounce).
This is only a slight difference. It may not make a big difference unless your baby is having trouble gaining weight or if you are exclusively pumping.
For example, you may pump into the Spectra bottles and feed out of Medela bottles. Over the course of a day, you may think that you pumped more than you actually did.
If your baby eats 27 ounces out of the Medela bottles, you will need to pump 30 ounces by the Spectra measurements.
In my opinion, the worst part about the Spectra bottles was that the measurements were very difficult to read. All of the other bottles were much more clear to determine the measurements.
Are Spectra Bottles Stable?
This is a matter of preference. The bottle design makes the bottles feel a little bit unstable. When I set them on the table, I felt that they may tip over at any time.
The Avent bottles and Medela bottles both felt much more stable when they were set on a table.
This stability can be offset by the fact that there is a place on the pump to hold one bottle.
However, I did not feel comfortable storing milk in the Spectra bottles in the refrigerator or for a long time.
I worked so hard to pump the milk, I did not want the bottle to tip over and potentially lose that precious milk!
Are Spectra Bottles BPA-free?
Yes, the Spectra bottles are made from a type of plastic that is BPA-free. In 2012, the FDA banned the use of BPA in baby bottles and sippy cups.
What Is The Spectra Bottle Disk Purpose?
The purpose of this disk is to make the bottles leak-proof. In order to use it, you can click it into the cap. After clicking the disk into the cap, you have a lid that appears to be completely sealed.
Personally, I didn’t use these bottles for storage, so I didn’t test if it was really leak proof.
I preferred to use these bottles (link to Amazon). They screwed directly onto the Spectra flange and were much more stable.
Plus, it was a benefit that they came in larger sizes and would hold 8 ounces of milk (or more).
Do Spectra Bottles Fit In The Medela Cooler?
You can fit 2 Spectra bottles into the Medela cooler with the ice. The Medela cooler is designed to fit 4 Medela bottles and the ice pack.
The Spectra bottles are an oval shape and slightly longer in width than the Medela bottles.
Because of the oval shape, you cannot fit 4 Spectra bottles into the Medela cooler along with the included ice pack.
If you want to continue using the Medela cooler, you may consider storing your milk in plastic milk bags. These take up much less space than the bottles.
Can Spectra Bottles Be Frozen?
Yes, Spectra bottles are safe to be used in the freezer. However, if you are freezing milk, then a much better solution is to use a breast milk bag instead of the Spectra bottles.
Milk that is stored in the freezer in a milk bag can be made air-tight. The air can be squeezed out of the bag to prevent freezer burn, unlike if milk is frozen in a bottle.
Milk that is frozen in a bag will take up much less space. Bags can be frozen flat. It is much more space efficient to store frozen milk in bags instead of in bottles.
Finally, any milk that is frozen should be labeled and dated so you know the expiration date. Bags are easy to write on, where a label may fall off a bottle that is stored in the freezer.
Can Spectra Bottles Be Microwaved?
Spectra bottles can be microwaved, but only for sterilization purposes. For feeding purposes, Spectra bottles should not be microwaved.
The microwave can cause hot spots and uneven heating, potentially burning your baby’s mouth when they are feeding.
I have put Spectra bottles into the microwave when I steam sterilized them in a microwave sterilizer. They are safe to use with these microwave steam sterilizers.
Are Spectra Bottles Slow Flow?
Spectra bottles no longer come with nipples, so they do not have a flow. If you are interested in feeding directly from the Spectra bottles, you can use the top for an Avent bottle and Avent nipple on the Spectra bottle.
Avent nipples come in slow, medium, and fast flow sizes.
Are Spectra Bottles Dishwasher Safe?
Yes, the Spectra bottles are dishwasher safe. I frequently washed the bottles in the dishwasher in order to save a little time with cleaning.
Can You Put Spectra Pump Parts In The Dishwasher?
Certain Spectra pump parts can go into the dishwasher. The hard plastic pieces can go into the dishwasher. This includes flanges and bottles.
The soft silicone white pump parts are delicate. They may stretch out and lose their effectiveness if they are washed in the dishwasher.
What Else Do You Need When Using A Spectra Pump?
When you are pumping with a Spectra, it is important to have a pumping bra that fits the pump and flanges.
Not every pumping bra will work with these flanges. You can read more about the best pumping bra for Spectra in my article here.
If you want more tips and tricks for using a Spectra pump, check out my Ultimate Guide – How To Use A Spectra Pump (Settings & Bonus Tips).
Summary: Pros And Cons Of Spectra Bottles
|Compatibility|| || |
|Volume Measurements|| || |
|Plastic Material|| || |
|Cleaning|| || |
- Check out this article for all of my best pumping tips – 17 Best Pumping Tips for Beginners
- Ever wonder how many calories you burn by pumping or breastfeeding?
- Tons of helpful information on increasing milk supply without supplements – 18 Natural Ways To Increase Milk Supply