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Tattler Canning Lid Fail! Beware!  RSS feed

 
Alder Burns
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I've been using the re-usable Tattler canning lids for a couple of years now with generally good results. There will often be a jar out of a dozen or two that will fail to seal, a higher percentage than with metal lids, but I considered that tolerable. Then I read the direction which says to back the metal bands off slightly when canning and then tighten them down immediately upon taking the jars out of the canner. So I started doing that, and seemed to see no improvement in my seal percentage.
But yesterday canning vegetable soup, I had taken the jars from the depressurized canner, and they were still boiling inside of the jars. I'm used to seeing this with jars of very liquidy stuff, and I guess somehow didn't think that that vapor was actually still escaping the lids somehow. When I tightened the first ring down, the lid blew out, spraying hot soup into my face, scalding me in several places! This morning I have a couple of small blisters. I wonder how much worse it would have been if I didn't have a lot of facial hair or glasses!
Looking through the directions carefully for both the canner and the lids, it seems like a dangerous protocol is encouraged by two processes....1. opening the canner up and taking the jars out as soon as the pressure gauge reads zero.....followed by 2. tightening those bands down right then, as the Tattler directions seem to indicate. Searching on numerous forums brings up a suggestion....some people wait ten minutes or so after the gauge reads zero before opening the canner. I think I'm going to also wait until I see no boiling action inside of the jars before tightening the bands down. When I first started using the Tattler lids I did not do this protocol of first loosening and then retightening the bands, treating them instead exactly like metal lids, and did not notice a difference in the seal failure rate.
In the fine print on Tattler's website I also notice this warning: "use a towel or something similar while tightening metal band after processing to help prevent accidental contact with hot contents." This warning does not appear on the boxes of the lids! It seems that this should be more blatantly stated!
Looking through various forums and reviews we've come across another account of burns resulting from an incident like this, so I'm not the only one, and also a consistently higher failure to seal percentage. I notice it is particularly likely with blended foods like soup and chili, that are processed for a long time, as opposed to foods consisting mostly of a single ingredient, like tomatoes, beans or even salsa.
 
Amedean Messan
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Location: Melbourne FL, USA - Pine and Palmetto Flatland, Sandy and Acidic
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I love my Tattler canning lids! One question though, how did you form a conclusion that the increase in canning fails were due to the Tattler lids?
 
Alder Burns
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When I use "ordinary" single use metal lids, I usually can go several "batches" (usually a batch for me is 24 pints in my big pressure canner) before I see a jar fail to seal. With the Tattlers it's more like one jar, or two, or three, out of EVERY batch! And with the 'blended foods', like soup and chili, it's been like 40%. And also, in 25 years canning, I've never known a metal lid to blow out like the Tattler lid just did. (But then, one doesn't tighten the bands after bringing the jars out of the canner with the metal lids).
I think part of my problem with the seal failures is that if I see a recommended time at 15 pounds, I am likely to try it in order to save time. 15# means 250 degrees which is the maximum temp. recommended for Tattlers, so perhaps I'm pushing their limits. I'm going to stay at 10# from now on with these lids, let the cooker cool 10 minutes before opening it, and not tighten those bands down till I see the stuff inside is done boiling!
 
Alder Burns
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Just got off the phone with someone at Tattler and she told me that I'm probably tightening the bands TOO TIGHT initially, before placing the jars in the canner. Written and website instructions say to tighten them hand tight, then back the bands off by 1/4 inch. What I was told today is the best way is to set the jars on the table and screw the bands onto them, without holding onto the jar at all. When the jar begins to turn with the band, it's tight enough to put in the pot. The person at Tattler insisted that I should not let the canner sit more than five minutes after depressurizing, and to tighten the bands immediately upon removing the jars, whether I see boiling in the jars or not. So I've got a new tactic to try.....
 
R Scott
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Location: Kansas Zone 6a
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I love tattlers, EXCEPT for in the pressure canner. I still haven't mastered that one. There is definitely a learning curve with them compared to metal disposable lids.

I always use a dry washcloth over the top of the lid when I tighten the band--I have never had a catastrophic failure but I have had them "squirt"a little if I screw up. The washcloth should protect against both problems.



 
Josiah Miller
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Location: Willamette Valley-Marion County
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[quote=Alder Burns] I wonder how much worse it would have been if I didn't have a lot of facial hair or glasses! [/quote]

Moral of the story. Always have a beard.
 
Chris Knipstein
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Location: Fort Wayne, Indiana
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I hadn't heard of this company before so went to their website to check them out and found that they have been re-designed. It's doesn't give an exact date though, this could have been September of last year, or before I suppose.


ANNOUNCING

Tattler Reusable Canning Lids is introducing the most revolutionary design update since the Reusable Canning Lids themselves!

EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY, the re-designed TATTLER LIDS (also bearing the name, “E-Z Seal”) will be available online. “E-Z Seal”, created by the original developer of Tattler Lids (Loren C. Stieg), have just become even easier to use, no learning curve. Simply place the lid/gasket combination on the jar, snug the metal band and process. Remove from the canner and allow to cool. Use is now the same as with conventional metal lids (for unknown reasons, metal bands sometimes loosen while processing, with any lid). We therefore recommend: Check the metal band after processing, while jar is hot, re-tighten if necessary, cover with towel for protection.

Orders on or after Wednesday, Sept. 3th will be “E-Z-SEAL”, and be shipped beginning Friday, Sept. 5th.


This was the website.
http://www.reusablecanninglids.com/

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