Where do you get home canning equipment and supplies? There are lots of choices. Hi there, my name is Sharon Peterson, and welcome to SimplyCanning.com where you can get home food preservation, canning classes, tutorials, and advice. I will help you fill your pantry.
I'm going to talk today about gathering home canning equipment. We're going to start off with used, because honestly, I'm pretty thrifty, and I do a lot of thrift store shopping, yard saling, auctions, and things like that. That's a great way to buy canning equipment. However, there are some things you want to keep in mind.
Let's talk about the jars first.
If you are buying used jars, make sure you check the top rim of every single jar, because you don't want to get chipped and broken jars, obviously. That rim right there is the most common place where they're going to be chipped and broken. Sometimes, if you just glance at it, you don't notice it. If you run your finger around it, you're going to feel it. So check the rims, make sure that they're not chipped or broken.
The jars may be dirty. That's okay. Glass cleans pretty well, but you've got to have to look at it and make sure that it's just dirt, that it's not scratched and chipped where it's going to weaken the jar. Another thing to check on is to make sure they're actual canning jars. You don't want to pay for old mayonnaise and pickle jars. You want canning jars if you're going to buy them.
The other thing is watch your price. You would be surprised, especially at secondhand stores, sometimes they price these more than if you would buy them individually. They might be more than what you would buy a box for at the store. It's amazing. Perhaps they think of crafters, somebody who needs a jar or two for some kind of a craft. They may be willing to pay a dollar a jar because they need one jar. But if you're paying a dollar a jar, you might as well go buy a whole box of new jars. If you're buying a whole box full, that's usually the best bet.
But watch your prices; know what jars are selling for in your area. Go to a local store and look and see what a box of new jars costs, because it's different in different locations. Watch your prices, make sure those rims are not broken, and check that the jars are generally in good condition.
If you are looking at a used canner like a pressure canner, make sure the weights are there. Make sure, if it's a Presto canner, that it has that rubber seal. Also know that depending on the price, you can just go buy those parts. So if they have a canner there and the rubber seal is missing, but they only want $2 for the canner? Well, heck, buy the canner and go buy yourself a new rubber seal!
If you get a used canner, always bring it in and have that gauge checked. Just have it checked and make sure that it's going to be good for actual use. Sometimes the older ones, they might be warped. There could be a variety of things wrong. Just make sure it's something that you can actually use. I have heard of people who have gotten really good deals on old canners, because old canners will last a long time. But make sure that it is in working now.
I often shop at my local ACE Hardware. Now hardware stores are different. They're owned individually, but they're all ACE. Some of them will have a really nice home section--I guess that's what you call it. Mine actually has a really nice canning section, so they've got all the home canning equipment that I would need. That's a really good place to look.
And of course, Amazon. You can find just about anything anybody could ever want on Amazon. So look there. I like to buy canning lids in bulk if possible, because I do a lot of canning. Now, this is only good if you do a lot of canning, but FillmoreContainer.com is a great website for you to buy lids in bulk. They have lids that come in big sleeves. They're unbranded, so they can sell them at a discount. I've used them, and they work really, really well.
I also went into my local ACE Hardware one time and the person who was managing the house section happened to be placing an order for lids. So I asked her, "Hey, could you order me a case? What kind of a deal could you give me?" She gave me a great deal, just because I happened to be in there at the right time. That's going to depend on your store and local person.
Secondhand is really, really cool, but secondhand takes time. So if you don't have the time to go shopping and looking, then you might want to go look at your ACE Hardware. Amazon is great. There are lots of other places where you can buy home canning equipment, but those are my preferences.
I hope that was helpful. Let me know if you have any questions. And again, this is Sharon with SimplyCanning.com. You guys have a great day.
Page last updated: 3/13/2020.