10 tips for your insulin pump

woman wearing insulin pump on jeans

Whether you’re new to insulin pumps, or have been pumping for most of your life, there’s always something new to learn! Here are our top 10 tips.

1. The Bolus Wizard on your insulin pump lets you set up to 8 sensitivity settings throughout the day. Your insulin sensitivity is the amount that your blood glucose level is reduced by one unit of insulin and might vary throughout the day.

2. If you have different schedules on different days (like work days and weekends) which leads to different insulin needs, you can program up to 2 additional basal rate patterns. This allows you to switch from a basal rate on a normal day to different basal rates an instant.

3. If you ever need just a little more insulin for a bolus (ok, let’s say a whole lot more), but reached the maximum delivery on your pump, here’s how to change the "Max bolus" setting.

4. A Dual Wave bolus gives you an immediate bolus with the remaining insulin delivered over a set amount of time. This feature is useful for meals with both rapid and slowly absorbed carbohydrates (i.e. a lunch buffet or pizza night).

5. Each of the bars on your battery icon on your pump screen represents approximately 25% of your battery life. Here are more 5 things to learn about the icons on your pump screen.

6. When your battery is in a normal mode, if you hold the “B” button and press the down arrow at the same time during any active alert your pump light will turn on. Good to know when you're in the dark and your pump starts alarming.

7. Open and close your battery cap with a thick coin, like a nickel or quarter. Tighten until the slot is horizontal to prevent it from overtightening.

8. There's a taping technique that can be used with your infusion set known as an “open face sandwich” that helps your sets stick better. We promise you there's no turkey and bread involved.

9. If you ever need to clean your pump, use a damp cloth with water mixed with mild detergent to wipe the outside of your pump. Don’t place it under running water.

10. Sometimes life happens and things can go wrong, so having a backup plan in place can bring you some piece of mind. Make sure you have extra diabetes and pump supplies on hand in case you need them and talk to your doctor about having a diabetes management backup plan in place.


Important Safety Information
Medtronic Diabetes insulin infusion pumps, continuous glucose monitoring systems and associated components are limited to sale by or on the order of a physician and should only be used under the direction of a healthcare professional familiar with the risks associated with the use of these systems. 
Pump therapy is not recommended for people who are unwilling or unable to perform a minimum of four blood glucose tests per day. Insulin pumps use rapid-acting insulin. If your insulin delivery is interrupted for any reason, you must be prepared to replace the missed insulin immediately. NOTE: Do NOT use the Bolus Wizard to calculate a bolus for a period of time after giving a manual injection by syringe or pen. The Bolus Wizard does not account for manual injections, and could prompt you to deliver more insulin than needed. Too much insulin may cause hypoglycemia. 
Please visit www.medtronicdiabetes.com/importantsafetyinformation for more details.

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Submitted by Ernie Pierson (not verified) on

In reply to by Commenter (not verified)

I have a request for Medtronics. In programming a pump, Carb Ratio's can be programmed by the tenth .1 up to 10. I am requesting a change that you can program by a tenth up to 15. I understand a new pump is under construction that will do this - but is not covered by Medicaire which I have. What can I do? ??

Thank you
Ernie Pierson

Submitted by LOOP Blog Editorial on

In reply to by Ernie Pierson (not verified)

Hi Ernie, thank you for your suggestion. I will be sure to share it with our product development team. I’m unable to comment on any products that are not approved by the FDA but please let me know if you’d like to speak to someone on our reimbursement team about your pump options.

Great tips thanks, will share this post! Love the purple pump!

Submitted by Nancy Rader (not verified) on

In reply to by Commenter (not verified)

I have been on a medtronic insulin pump over 30 years, and I have run out of real estate....I am having trouble finding a place on my abdomen that does not have scare tissue. I have used the 9mm quick set and want to know, if there is a set with a longer needle that would go through scare tissue. I know there has to be other people with the same issue and would like to know how they handle it

Submitted by Nicole (not verified) on

In reply to by Nancy Rader (not verified)

Nancy, have you explored other areas for your sites, such as your arm or thighs? You can view all approved locations here: https://bit.ly/3fZisW3
Our Silhouette infusion sets do come in 13 and 17 mm. To compare sets, click here: http://bit.ly/10L73LG

Submitted by Jennifer (not verified) on

In reply to by Commenter (not verified)

I have an insulin pump and have to wear a dress to work and do not work in a private office, any advice on wearing a pump with accessibility to the pump in public

Submitted by Nicole (not verified) on

In reply to by Jennifer (not verified)

Great question, Jennifer. We have several pouches that may fit your need, such as our leg pouch. Our MiniMed Ambassadors wear our pumps and would love to share their insights. To connect, click here: http://bit.ly/1wdUET1

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