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Old 09/17/08, 06:38 PM
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: NW Illlinois
Posts: 290
Rust in canner

Has anyone else ever had this problem? No matter what wire jar-holder I use in my water-bath canner (and I have several) the wire ends up getting rusty....and turning the water in the water-bath canner rusty. Aggravates me no end. My water normally isn't rusty; no stains in sinks or toilets. It is hard water, though, and I always add a little vinegar to the canning water so the jars stay cleaner.

A lady gave me a wonderful 9-quart enamel canner last spring with a nice wire jar-holder in it - no rust! After I used it twice, it's rusty! Any suggestions? A small problem, maybe, but it baffles me.
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Old 09/18/08, 06:23 AM
sheepish's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Ontario
Posts: 1,714
Stop adding vinegar to the water. Acid hastens the rusting process. Your basket will rust eventually, but not nearly so fast.

Polish the jars when they come out to get the calcium off.
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Old 09/18/08, 09:33 AM
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 1,064
Ooh I didn't know that vinegar made it happen faster. Bummer.

kitchenkrafts sells a stainless steal rack that is quite tempting, but it's pricey. Maybe the next time I replace my rusty rack I'll go for it! 3 cheap rusty ones...or one schmancy one? Hmmmm.
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Old 09/18/08, 11:35 AM
In Remembrance
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: South Central Kansas
Posts: 11,076
If price isn't a concern take a rack and get it powder coated. A finish that should last well----even through the heated acid bath you give it every time you can with vinegar acid water.

Yup, acid causes things to oxidize rapidly.
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Old 09/18/08, 11:47 AM
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Southern Alabama
Posts: 2,164
YEPPER mine is always rusty. I hate it but, it does the job. I try to scrubb it off but, right back on it is.
I just might have to check out that other rack. Maybe I'll just wish if it is pricey though.
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Old 09/18/08, 12:11 PM
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 66
I have had the same problem. I was letting it sit in the canner after taking out the jars and also putting the rack back into the canner before it is completely dry. Now I remove it as soon as I take out the jars, put it in the drainer until it is totally dry, then back into the canner. That has helped.
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Old 09/19/08, 09:43 AM
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: NW Illlinois
Posts: 290
Thanks, everyone. Maybe I'll have to stop using vinegar, but I hate that blueish film that the hard water causes.... I was afraid to have the wire coated because of the possible contact with food, but maybe I'm being paranoid. I'm sorry that others, too, are having the problem, but on the other hand, I feel a little better that it's not just me!!

Mostly, I was trying to use the water in the canner over again with another batch of jars and not dump out gallons of good water (trying to be frugal), so I hated that the water got cloudy or rusty.
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Old 09/25/08, 09:56 PM
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 1,059
They do rust badly. The rust won't get into the food, though.
What I do is use a small stainless rack that was a grill for a small bbq grill. Found for 99 cents at the thrift store. It will hold more jars, too. That or you can use one for a pressure canner, too. Even a folded towel will work in the bottom.
Master Food Preserver/ Food Safety Advisor
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