Last year, I bought a couple boxes of Tattler reusable canning jar lids. After over a season of use, my experience is:
- They fail to seal more often than disposable lids, especially when pressure canning and perhaps especially with wide-mouth lids. Two or three no-seals per canner load are not uncommon, though I have had “perfect” water bath canner loads.
- You need to pay more attention to the tightness of the band to get a good seal (hint: re-tighten the band when you take the jars out of the canner).
- It’s a little harder to tell if the jars have sealed, so be sure to take the bands off and check your seals before storage.
- When they do seal, they seal well.
- They are very easy to wash and re-use, which saves a lot of waste.
- They are wonderful for very acidic foods like pickles, because the lids can’t rust.
Overall, I will continue to use them, especially for water bath canning acidic foods. I probably won’t use them for pressure canning unless I’m out of disposable lids, just because the failure rate annoys me. If anyone has tips on how to improve my success rate, please comment!
If you are just learning to can, I suggest you start with the regular disposable metal lids. No sense getting frustrated by equipment right off the bat!
This experiment also taught me something very important: I hate canned green beans! I’ve had several people lately tell me they are far better than frozen green beans, but I guess since I grew up on frozen, there’s no going over to canned at this point. I would truly rather not eat any green beans than eat them canned. And since three of my ten jars in this batch didn’t seal, it’ll make the composting all that much easier…