Can I reuse store-bought jam jars for canning? - Homesteading Today
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Old 01/18/11, 12:03 PM
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Idaho
Posts: 557
Can I reuse store-bought jam jars for canning?

Not sure if I can use these or not. I've been buying the same jam for 3 years now and have a ton of these little specialty jars. Basically they're jam jar lids like Smuckers brand (smaller, thinner). Can these be used to steambath or can things?
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Old 01/18/11, 12:17 PM
susieM's Avatar  
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: France
Posts: 4,117
Yes....for pressure canning or BWB, just buy new lids.
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Old 01/18/11, 01:01 PM
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: "W"est of Boston
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If the standard lids and rings fit, then go ahead and reuse the jars. Many people will only reuse commercial jars for BWB, and will only use the "official" cannign jars for C.
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Old 01/18/11, 04:26 PM
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Idaho
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What is BWB?
These jars are too small to fit any rings. Was hoping to reuse the lids they came with.
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Old 01/18/11, 04:51 PM
judylou's Avatar  
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Arkansas
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There are 2 types of canning. BWB = boiling water bath canning. PC=pressure canning. I'm not sure what you mean by "steambath".

The lids that come on the jelly jars are not reuseable as they either do not re-seal or develop only a weak temporary seal. Your jelly jars can be used for making freezer jams, for dry storage, for refrigerated left-overs, etc. but not for safe canning if you plan on shelf storage.

Any commercial food jars can be used for BWB canning IF the standard canning lids and rings fit them. Otherwise, no. Many of them will not hold up to pressure canning.

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Old 01/18/11, 08:38 PM
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Idaho
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That helps. Thank you all
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Old 01/19/11, 11:01 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Fort Repose
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If the jars are Smucker's jars, then they are what us old folks know as "63's"; the lids are 63 mm. This size was a lot used during WWII to save metal since they were smaller and discontinued in the late 70's I believe.

I don't think the rings would work on those jars and any lids you might find could be questionable as far as the sealing material. But if you want to reuse them to can in, then you might check out Fillmore Containers. They have lids of various sizes, and I remember they used to sell one line as being okay to use for waterbath. I don't see any of their regular lids now with the waterbath notation, but if you call they may be able to help you. I think they stopped using the canning notation for liability reasons. (ETA: They do have a one-piece lid, regular canning size, for canning purposes, but I don't see any of the smaller ones listed for canning)

I use those jars and original lids for vacuum sealing dried foods and whenever I have to open a #10 can of freeze-dried vegs, the contents get resealed and stored in a small jam jar.
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Last edited by wottahuzzee; 01/19/11 at 11:06 AM.
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