I have heard some scary stories about buckling, rusting, and other safety issues with off brand canning jar lids. There are loads of comments on Amazon about the dangers of knock-off canning jar lids. Some folks even ordered boxes so called Ball lids from Amazon only to find out that they were subpar knockoffs from China. Up to now I have been a purest when it comes to canning jar lids, only using Ball lids. I have bought most of my Ball canning lids from my local Walmart and also made some long drives up to Lancaster to shop at The Goods Store.
I also am a rule follower who only uses my metal lids one time. Canning over 700 jars a year adds up to a lot of lids. I buy them by the case, but I ALWAYS need more lids. When ForJars USA very kindly offered me some free samples to test, I decided it was worth giving them a try.
I used more than 100 lids during my test of the ForJars lids. I used every size of jar that I have: half pints, pints, 1.5 pints, and quarts, wide and regular mouth. I did both pressure and water bath canning with the ForJars lids. I can honestly say that I was pleasantly surprised. They worked as well or better than Ball lids.
Comparison Chart of Common Canning Jar Lids
Which lids will I buy going forward?
I already ordered another box of 200 ForJars lids! Why? The quality and price are as good as Ball, but they are a small family owned business headquartered in the USA. I love that I can reach out to them and get a personal response. Ball (and its conglomerate) needs some competition! I do wish that they were manufactured in the USA. I watched several video reviews of the Pur jar lids and was left feeling worried. Some users had issues with buckling when pressure canning and that seems too risky, despite the cost savings.
If you decide you would like to order some ForJars Lids, it is easy to get 10% off by just signing up for their newsletter. OR if you’d like to help support our farm you can get 10% off by entering the code AMY10 at checkout.
Interesting Facts About Canning Lids
1. Ball, Kerr, Bernardin, and Golden Harvest are all owned by the SAME company, Newell Brands.
Up until the 1990s these were separate companies with all the good competition and alternate suppliers in case of shortages (ahem) that goes with that. Nowadays, the jars and lids are still made in the USA, but without much competition.
2. They are made out of layers of metals
“Ball and Kerr lids are made up of five different materials. We start with a core base of steel sheeting, applying an ultra-fine tinplate coating to the top and twice the tinplate coating on the underside. A BPA-Free base coating is then applied to the underside and a BPA-Free top coating is applied to both the top and underside of the lid. The sheets of tin-plated steel are stamped out to create regular and wide mouth lids. Lastly the plastisol is poured into the channel on the underside of each lid.” [HealthyCanning.com]
ForJars brand lids are a little different. They use silicone instead of plastisol in the channel on the underside of each lid. It is silicone with an appropriate melting temperature for canning. They also incorporate stainless steel into their layers of materials. It is supposed to help with rust resistance. I wanted to test out that aspect of the ForJars lids compared to Ball. I know that when I leave a Ball lid soaking overnight, it rusts. I soaked a ForJars lid and it did the same thing.
It is important to note that it is no longer recommended to boil or simmer lids prior to using them. When the sealant was made out of latex it needed to be softened prior to use, but silicone and plastisol do not need to be prepped that way. Just rinse in soap and water prior to using.
3. Unused lids should last for 5 years after purchase
“Gaskets in unused lids work well for at least 5 years from date of manufacture. The gasket compound in older unused lids may fail to seal on jars… Buy only the quantity of lids you will use in a year. To ensure a good seal, carefully follow the manufacturer’s directions in preparing lids for use. Examine all metal lids carefully. Do not use old, dented, or deformed lids, or lids with gaps or other defects in the sealing gasket.” [National Center For Home Food Preservation]
To me that is a green light to be prepared for shortages by having plenty of extra lids on hand. If you have read much of my blog you know how much I love to store things in case of emergencies. 🙂 I like knowing that canning lids can be part of my pantry storage inventory.