Vacuum sealer : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

Can anyone tell me the best kind of vacuum sealer to buy? What kinds of foods save best that way? Where can I purchase one?

-- Belinda Brown (, October 12, 1998


I purchased an expensive vacuum sealer called the Food Saver at Costco ($190.00). Bought some noodles and on every bag the noodles broke through the packaging. Then I tried split peas. They sealed nicely, but in the morning when I went to store them, they lost the seal on about half of them. I felt it was a waste of time, and money. So I returned it. I then found a different type at a thrift store for $5.00! I went through the same procedure and the results were the same. Frankly, I don't think it's worth the time and effort. You can do better by nitrogen packaging in food grade buckets.

-- Bardou (, October 12, 1998.

P.S. The bags that good with the vacuum sealers are very expensive! they claim they can be reused again but I don't see how.

-- Bardou (, October 12, 1998.

P.S. The bags that go with the vacuum sealers are very expensive! they claim they can be reused again but I don't see how.

-- Bardou (, October 12, 1998.

I tried a little hand pump call Pump 'n Seal by Creative Concepts. Works well with canning jars. Also with some plastic freezer bags, but that's hit and miss.

-- vacuum brain (, October 13, 1998.

I purchased the Tillia Food Saver last winter, ordering it directly from the company after seeing it advertized on TV. I think it's great!!! No more wasted lettuce and other veggies, no more soggy crackers, chips, cereals, etc. (I'm single, and have lots of leftovers.) Perhaps purchasing it directly from the company made the difference. When I had a problem with a couple cannisters sealing, I called their 800 number and they immediately sent me 2 new lids. I have used the storage bags over and over until they are so small (from cutting off the sealed end) I throw them out. Perhaps you got a faulty one from Costco. I have found a good bargain there, in buying more of the food bags, however. But I'm glad I purchased the machine, etc., from the company originally. No, I do not work for, or have any financial interest in, the company! It's well worth it, though when and if we have power outages during Y2K "recovery," my machine will be on vacation. So, I'm filling bags with dehydrated foods. Lord help us all!

-- Holly Allen (, October 13, 1998.

I also have the FreshSaver System (Which includes the FreshSaver Plus Vacuum Pump and the VacLoc Sealer) by Tilia International, Inc. It is excellent. It does take some skill to operate it properly, but once you get the hang of it, it works flawlessly. For everyday use, the vacuum pump works with canisters that have special tops with valve sealers. For longer term storage, or other types of food, the bag sealer is good. This uses their special bags, but they are very sturdy and have not broken in my use. If sharp objects are stored it would be a good idea to prewrap them in a different bag first. The use of the pump along with the heat sealer requires just the right amount of pressure to remove enough air before the heating edge comes down on the bag as it is drawn by the vacuum. Have to leave a 2" margin or so between the sealing line and the contents. If the contents are liquid, have to be careful not to allow any of it to move up to the sealing line. A continuous roll of bag material is available for vaiable length items, for this a seal is made on one end, then a length is cut and sealed at the opposite end.

I am storing matches this way, also boxes of dehydrated food mix (ordinary off-the shelf single-meal boxes of potato, rice, bean mixes etc). Somewhere I read the idea of just picking up an extra $10 or so of dry food (and non-perishables like paper plates) every time you go shopping. Certain foods need additional packaging to last more than a few months. I've also stored dehydrated bananas and apples this way (after dehydrating them with the Ronco dehydrator---interesting note the first Ronco I got at a Whole Life Expo for $70 about 8 years ago; a year ago I found the same thing for $15 "half-price" at Harbor Freight Tools!)

Also the vacuum sealer with canisters are great for storing veggies especially lettuce and spinach in everyday use.

-- Jon (, October 15, 1998.

I purchased a Foodsaver by Tilia, during a State Fair from a distributor of the product, in 1989. Since then I have used it continually for everthing that I want to keep. I have all kinds of dried foods, rice etc. that are as good as when I sealed them. The bags I reuse until they are too small for anything. I get meat in bulk and break it down, seal it and freeze it. Never a burn. I have never had a bit of trouble with the unit and never had to replace anything but the razor for cutting the bags.

Because of the new inovations that have come about, I am thinking of purchasing a new one, but the one I have is still so good it is hard to think of paying for another.

-- Lola Waychus (, June 07, 1999.

I have a manual sealing pump that we use all the time with canning jars and other jars if they have a rubber sealing ring [ex. peanut butter jars]. It also works with the "zippo bags" but we don't do that yet. If the power goes out and there is no refrigeration it's a handy tool to have. I think the price was about 10 dollars. ooks like a little bike pump.

-- thinkIcan (, June 07, 1999.

If you find a good vacuum sealer. Please let me know.

-- kathy taylor (, June 08, 1999.

I'm also looking. I can tell you what not to get. I bought a Deni sealer at Target. Sears also sells it. It is totally worthless, and I returned it after one day. Good luck.

-- Duane Moreland (, June 28, 1999.

I am trying to find bags for my sealer. The correct size is 9.5" , but I have been using the only ones I can find 8". Does anyone have a number that I can contact for bags?

-- Rick Zimmerly (, July 06, 1999.

I too bought a sealer, the same one that sells at Costco....and you are all correct....very useless......I'm taking it back today after one day of frustraation. Sounds like the Tillia, many of you agree, is a good one.

-- Teri (, July 08, 1999.

I agree on the Tilia. I adore mine.

Yes, the bags are expensive, but you can reuse them. You can even put them in the dishwasher. They are not meant for sharp things like noodles (not only will it puncture the bag, the suction is strong enough to break them)or dehydrated vegetables that become brittle. I have sealed, nuts, spices, marshmellows (they are fun!), dried fruits, coconut, etc. in mine. I have also sealed cheddar cheese and country ham. That was in March, and the ham and cheese is still storing well. I am vacuum sealing cookies, crackers, chips, etc. in quart jars. It's great for saving lots of food that you would not be able to store otherwise. And for breaking bulk purchases into usable sizes without losing the quality.

The Deni, is a waste of money and time. Do not buy it.

-- Dian (, July 09, 1999.

I am having LIMITED success with the Tillia bags on the Deni vac machine. The DENI bags are just about good for sealing .... well...... umm....... well........ deposits to the local Chic Sales Building.

(see how old y'all are!! LOL)


-- Chuck, a night driver (, July 09, 1999.

Just got my Tilla Food Saver 2 and I love it. Bags are a little costly but just turn them inside out and place in dishwasher.I bought it for my camping trips but I see many more usages for it. At $149 I guess you can say you get what you pay for.

-- Dave Bard (, July 18, 1999.

I recently purchased a Tilia Compact II from an infomercial. I also recently returned it and am hoping to get my money back. It looks like a high quality device, as attested to by some of the comments in this forum. Mine never worked. It just made a buzzing noise ... not evem a red light. Trying to get in touch with the folks at Motivational Fulfillment (the infomercial marketing company) was ridiculous. I was kept on hold for ten minutes then transfered to an extension that hung up on me. This happened repeatedly throughout the day. I need a sealer but don't want to deal with Tilia ever again. Is there anyhing comparable? How about Prolock?

-- Rob Baraszu (, August 01, 1999.

I ADORE my Tillia Food Saver Sealer (also a CostCo purchase). I am using it to seal my books and important documents before I put them in storage. The bags can be re-used easily.

-- R (, August 01, 1999.


Did you contact Tilia directly? I have had no reason to do so, but read on another forum that someone got good response from them on a problem they had with a jar vacuum lid.

-- Dian (, August 01, 1999.

I have purchased the Tilia Food Saver Compact II and it is one of the best purchases I have ever made! It is a wonderful machine! I believe the guy above (Rob?) must have been trying to seal his bags upside down. You have to vacuum/seal them with a particular side of the bag down or nothing happens and you get a buzzing sound.

I have vacuumed everything from hamburger to lettuce and it works beautifully. I can't wait to get a set of the canisters! As you can see I highly recommend this purchase. It is an appliance I will use everyday.

-- Tracy (, October 05, 1999.

i just bought a vacuum sealer, bags are costly were can i get them

more reasonably priced.

-- rock celeste (, October 14, 1999.

wahooZ magooZ

-- alex mascar (, October 16, 1999.

I want to buy a vacuum sealer to store food in a freezer. I am going to buy a large freezer and want to use it to store meat. I want to economize by buying meat in bulk and also want to start making food in large quantities. Do these systems work for foods like soups, lasagna, and cooked & uncooked vegetables?

-- Brian Graffius (, October 24, 1999.


Yes they will, just be sure to leave enough head room so that food does not get sucked up into the machine, and to reseal again, should you decide to reuse the bags. For the uses you have in mind, I would recommend the rolls of uncut bags. That will allow you to choose the appropriate size for the bag. I hope you will find yours as useful as I have found mine.

-- Dian (, October 25, 1999.

Do NOT buy the Deni! I got one from wal-mart online and it does not seal well. It seems to seal well, but the next day it has as much air in it as it would if you were just using regular storage bags. Also, stuff pulled from the freezer leaks bad. I have heard wonderful things about the Tilia and plan to buy one as soon as I get my refund from wal-mart.

Also, if you want to freeze liquids but don't want to risk getting the liquid in the motor of your sealer freeze it in another container first, then pop it out of the container and into a bag and seal.

-- Heather Stowers (, November 02, 1999.

Just purchased the FoodSaverCompact II at a Sam's Club today - for $149 and it came with a "SAM'S" bonus of 2 Bottle Tops, and a 4 and 5 inch jar sealer, AND 2 rolls of bags in addition to the 1 precut roll and widemouth jar sealer that comes with it. Sam's also has a box of replacement bags, 2 8" and 2 11" for $25. Best price I have found for all the listed items, along with the option to reutrn if you're not satisfied. But, I am!!

What a steal, I feel like a kid playing with a terrific toy!! Let me know if you need more info.


-- Denise Jarema (, November 04, 1999.

I purchased a foodsaver Ultra at Costco and it cost $179.00. Can anyone tell me if this is a good and easy one, my son wanted one for Christmas and knows nothing about them. Let me know if I made a wise choice, because I don't know anthing about them either. Tnx FPP

-- Florence Philipps (fphilipps@HOTMAIL.COM), November 30, 1999.

I just ordered a Tilia online at . You won't beat this price! They are give $50 to anyone who opens an account now! I even got the extra bags! What a deal!

180298240 Tilia FoodSaver Compact II, 00-0108 $149.99 232727049 Tilia VacLoc Vacuum Bag Material, 2 Rolls $19.99

Subtotal:$169.98 Shipping:FREE! Sales Tax:$0.00 Total:$169.98 Available Mercata$:$50.00 Mercata$ (up to 50 percent of your subtotal)

Total Charges: $119.98

-- H. Adam Steinberg (, December 02, 1999.

I bought the Tilia Foodsaver Delux. Approx.$200.00+. Without a doubt the best money I've spent in a long time. There is no up side down to the bags. You can seal the rough or the smooth side. Believe me, I've done both a lot. I use mine to seal and freeze meats,shrimp,salmon,lobster tail and all kinds of frozen veg. for long storage. True, the bags are kinda spendy, but can be reused over and over until there is no bag left. Extremely concise instructions with the unit. Some things are best frozen a bit first then vac sealed. And of course if there is a sharp edge on something, you will need to protect it. For example....... the sharp points on a lobster tail. IT'S A GREAT MACHINE.

-- Bob Vezina (, December 08, 1999.

I just purchased a Deni and I have to say I agree with all that it is not worth the time or effort. I returned it the day after I received it. I hope all you Tilia supporters are right because I'm going to try it.

-- Doreen Raftery (, January 04, 2000.

I use a Tillia FoodSaver Deluxe that cost $199.

I recently found that the rolls of bags (that you cut and make your own bags with) were at SAM'S Club for HALF the price I had seen them anywheres else. (4 rolls for $25)

Recently my Foodsaver was having trouble getting a good seal and then just apparently stopped sealing (the vacuum part). The pump kept running, but nothing else was doing its job.

I had stored it for about 6 months with the lid closed and the latches locked. the Tillia rep I talked to said that the gaskets might be out of wack because of these and offered to send me new ones.

meanwhile, I removed the upper gasket plate and discovered that one of the plastic supports where the screws go in was cracked (tightened too much). A little super glue and it was all fixed. no more vacuum leaks.

If you plan to store meats, set the sealer bar to 5 sec instead of 3 sec. You get a better seal.

I have no problems re-sealing the bags, you just lose an inch or so of bag everytime you re-seal.

-- plonk! (, January 04, 2000.

We purchased our tilla food saver commericial model back in 89 and it has been a great tool for us. up here in Alaska we seal alot of fish and venison with works well for waterproofing boat and camping stuff also. I came to this page looking for a phone # for tilla servis dept can anybody help me with finding it?????? Email me if you can help thanks Rod bray

-- Rod Bray (, January 28, 2000.

Tilia Food Saver works for me. Read the instruction manual. Use their bags, and make sure you have the right side of the bags up when sealing. Naturally if something has sharp edges, they might puncture, so put stuff like that in several regular baggies, then put in the Tilia bag.

Now, to user your toaster -- first, make sure it is plugged in, make sure ...

-- A (, January 28, 2000.

One of the Tilia Foodsaver models is almost certainly going to be your best bet. Of the electric homeowner vacuum sealers on the market it's the only one worth the money.

There are two basic models, one will seal both bags and canning jars and the other which is primarily intended for just jars. The jar model is generally 40-50% cheaper than the other.

Jar sealing is, in my opinion, where the true value of these units lie. The bags are fairly expensive and subject to the ills that any flexible package is but the jars are infinitely reusable, even the lids if you care for them properly.

I have instructions on how to use vacuum sealers for food storage in the Prudent Food Storage FAQ which you may read or download for free in the House at Cat's Green portion of my site

The FAQ will also tell you what you shouldn't try to use a vacuum sealer for as well.


-- A.T. Hagan (, January 28, 2000.

I was reading all the E mails on the food saver. Thinking about buying one. I have one of the little "bicycle pump" types, have used it for years. My husband said,"the company probably put all those positive E mails on that site" could that be possible? I live in Mich. upper peninsula and have to Sams's or Costco's where is the best place to buy one and what is a good price?

-- Carrie DeWinter (, June 03, 2000.

We have tried most "so call" vacuum sealers. Many generate less than 1 inch of vacuum (toys). The Food Saver is good, generates about 23 inches of vacuum, but expensive and restrictive. Its not portable, can't seal ordinary jars (peanut butter, jelly, pickle,etc), can't seal zipper bags, pot, pans, bowls, cups, drinking glasses, etc. The small portable "bicycle-pump-looking" vacuum sealer, the Pump-N-Seal, generates over 28 inches of vacuum and seales all the above containers and more. I have been using one for over 11 years and it still works great. I paid about $25 for mine. Saved thousands. I see they now have a website at which includes a toll free number, 800 323-3965. Great site... a bit slow but well worth the short wait.

I use it for just about everything, including science experments for the grand kids, since it generates more vacuum (and faster) than most school science lab vacuum systems. Just about any food you can think of keeps better, tastes better, looks better and keeps the nutritional prop

-- Glen Schultz (, June 30, 2000.

I just submitted an answer to your question and included a website for the Pump-N-Seal but the system didn't print it out. I will try again. It is

-- Glen Schultz (, June 30, 2000.

This is not an answer, but a follow-up question. It appears that Tilia is far superiour to Dimi, but has anyone had any experience with the KeepFresh VS-280 from ( It cost $159.00 and seems to have additional features over the Tilia, but I have not seen any reviews for it other than whats on the website. Any advice/experience would be appreciated.

-- Ernest Rosemond (, December 04, 2000.

Another vacuum sealer question. I found a Black and Decker for about $50 at Shopco, today. Does anyone have any experience with it? It says that it will seal 3 different weights of bags.

I'm also looking for a less expensive way to buy the bags. Are there any wholesale places to get them?

-- Liz Leavitt (, August 12, 2001.

I bought the Tilia food saver 2 years ago and have had wonderful results with it. As long as you use it as recommended you will have no problems with it. It is fantastic for marinating meat and poultry with. I use a half gallon canning jar and the lid sealer. It also works great for any fresh vegies. Buy one and have lots of fun. I buy bags at Costco in a box of six rolls, 2 eight inch rolls and 4 ll inch rolls for $38.00.

-- ORVIN RUSSELL (, September 08, 2001.

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