Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Germ Guardian Nursery Sanitizer Review

Retail Price: $48-$59
Lowest Price: Wal-mart.com with 97 cent shipping or Amazon.com with free shipping

I bought this item before returning to work because I thought it would simplify my sterilizing routine for my breast pump parts. I also liked that It was dry sanitizing, so I was excited to sanitize items like teethers, small stuffed animals, etc. I wish that I had seen all the reviews on amazon before purchasing. I assumed by the photo that this was a much bigger item, and that I would be able to fit lots inside.

I was sadly mistaken. When the germ guardian arrived I was shocked at how small it was. Unlike other reviewers stated, I was able to fit all of my double pump pieces inside, both horns, both diaphragms, and all the sterile caps, etc. However, that was about all I could fit. If the unit is completely empty, I can fit four, 4 ounce avent bottles in it, but none with the pump horns. The avent 4 ounce bottles must be in the 4 corners, otherwise the lid hits them and won't close. Anything larger than a 4 ounce bottle will only fit on it's side. Because of the strange plastic divider pieces that are in the container, only ONE 8 oz bottle will fit inside, on it's side. Strange! So when I thought that I would be able to come home and sterilize Four bottles and all my pump parts in one load, I was sadly mistaken. I can fit almost 50% more items in my Avent Micro Steam Sterilizer.

If I didn't have to pay for return shipping on this item, it would be going back. The small size of the chamber is just ridiculous. They could have at least made it deeper, if not wider dimensionally... that way it would take up very little counter space and still handle a nice sized load.

Another thing I wasn't expecting, the bottom of the container is "open" with spoke-like dividers radiating out from the center. Instead of being a nice grid design like say, a colander, it allows smaller pump parts and even pacifier handles and small MAM Pacis to fall through. That is crazy to me. I am always afraid this will cause something to melt or drop through.

That said, the sanitizer is easy to use. It does it's job. It's nice to walk away and come back to clean, dry, sterile pieces.

Another thing I was shocked about? You can't use this to sanitize teethers! The directions state that no toys with liquid inside can be placed in the sanitizer in case they get too hot and burst. I was shocked and disappointed at this. You also can't put in any toys with light or music/sound features. So no light up keys or musical rattles. I thought that as a dry sanitizer, it would be able to do these things for me. That even ruled out the stuffed animal that I wanted to sanitize, because his hands are plastic and filled with a teething gel.

Another downside is that wet items cant be placed inside. So while I thought I would save drying time, I still have to wash and hand dry all the parts before they can go inside. I thought they would probably dry while in the sanitizer, since it uses heat much like a dishwasher. However, the directions tell you that it is NOT A DRYER and that Wet Items are not to be placed inside. If wet items are inside, they won't get hot enough to be sanitized.

I was extremely frustrated with the lack of information about the product that was available before I purchased.

This could use some serious improvements. The idea is great but the design is not.

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