Whenever you’re making a product, one of the most important things you need to do is packaging. But, there are so many forms of packaging that it can be challenging to select one.
These days, one of the most famous packaging forms is vacuum sealing. Here, you make use of vacuum sealer bags to suck the air out from the surroundings of a product, thus ensuring that it lasts.
In this article, we’ll look into how to use vacuum sealer bags.
What Is Vacuum Sealing?
Of all the packaging methods, the process of how to use vacuum sealer bags is one of the most sought-after. With this method, you focus on sucking out every trace of air from your package, then sealing it completely shut to ensure that oxygen doesn’t get back in.
With vacuum sealing, you put whatever item you want to send in the bag or any other packaging material. Then, you take out air from it, thus creating the vacuum in question. Front here, you seal the bag or container and keep it secure.
From perishables to things like documents and jewelry, vacuum sealing has emerged as a major storage strategy. The process even helps the pharmaceutical industry to significantly reduce the chances of pharmaceutical contamination. And, its popularity is only growing.
How Vacuum Sealing Takes Air From Bags
As we said, the entire point of vacuum sealing is to take out any trace of air from the container or bag. This way, you’re left with a product that is free of air and which has a higher chance of surviving long hours.
This process of removing air entirely is achieved with the use of a vacuum sealing machine. These machines take the open end of the bag or container and then seal it. With this initial seal, you have an airtight build for the bag already. Then, the vacuum sealer quickly removes the air from the bag – a process that can either be done using chambering or suction.
With the air now taken out, the seal is completed, and you’re good to go.
What Are Vacuum Sealer Bags?
Vacuum sealer bags are a critical part of the vacuum sealing process. They work with vacuum sealing machines, allowing you to easily preserve your items.
These bags interact with the vacuum sealer machine, allowing you to seamlessly close the gaps and keep the materials in. From there, you can create your seal and ensure that your material is properly preserved.
Types Of Seal Bags & How To Choose
Vacuum sealer bags are available in different types, and the type you choose will eventually play an important role in how well you’re able to seal your material.
Generally, here are some of the most notable types of vacuum sealer bags available:
- Textured sealer bags, with their textured surfaces
- Channel bags, which have channels that help transport air
- Smooth bags, which have flat and smooth surfaces without patterns
- Mesh sealing bags, which work with materials that have uneven surfaces
- Pre-cut bags, which already come with cuts
- Vacuum sealer rolls, which help you make custom-sized bags
- Zipper-top bags, which have closable sealer on them
- Boilable vacuum bags, which are especially ideal for sous vide cooking
Choosing A Vacuum Sealer Bag
When choosing a vacuum sealer bag, you need to be careful to ensure that you have the right stuff. With that in mind, here are a few things to check off a list before going ahead with a purchase:
- You need the right material
- The bag also needs to work with the sealer
- Your bag also needs to be big enough
- Some bags are pre-cut; if you have one of these, then it’ll be more convenient for you
- The bag needs to be able to handle temperatures well
- Price also plays a key role. You want a bag that’s affordable enough
An Introduction to Vacuum Sealer Machines
When it comes to vacuum sealing, the first thing you need to keep in mind is the vacuum sealer machine you’re working with. These machines are responsible for sucking the air out of the sealer bags, ensuring that oxidation is unable to affect whatever you’re packaging.
Vacuum sealer bags come in different forms, although if you’re trying to get one, most experts will recommend that you go for any of the following:
External Vacuum Sealers
Top among the list of vacuum sealers in terms of popularity are the external vacuum cleaners. They come with the classic countertop design, and your job is simply to place the open end of the bag on the external part of the machine. From there, the machine uses suction to take out the air and the bag is vacuum sealed.
These sealers are important because they tend to be affordable, and their design is pretty portable. But, they might not be so great when working with liquids.
Chamber Vacuum Sealers
As the name suggests, these sealers come with chambers where you put the bag and your product. The full chamber is vacuumed, then the bag is vacuum sealed.
Chamber vacuum sealers are reliable for their strength and ability to work with liquids. But, they tend to be much larger, and the costs can be pretty high too.
Handheld Vacuum Sealers
Portability is the name of the game when it comes to handheld vacuum sealers. They are attached to the containers, and their compact bodies make them perfect for occasional use.
As you would imagine, the portable build of these sealers can also present limitations from a power perspective. So, you need to be careful with those.
External Suction Vacuum Sealers
Similar to the first option, these tend to work with external suction, taking air from the sealed bag and preventing oxygen entry. They’re more affordable machines, but like the handheld options, they might not be so strong.
Commercial Vacuum Sealers
If you’re not looking for something to use at home, then the commercial sealing machines are up your alley. These are heavy-duty sealers that tend to be larger and more powerful. Plus, they also handle high volumes rather well.
How To Choose A Vacuum Sealer
Of course, you can’t just go about selecting a machine without knowing what you’re getting yourself into. So, as you shop for different vacuum sealer machine types and options available, remember to focus on some of these points:
- Does It Work For You?: Functionality will be key here for sure. So, don’t take it for granted.
- The Machine’s Strength: Vacuum sealers come in different sizes and capacities. If you’re looking to seal a massive item, then you’ll need something strong enough.
- It Should Work With The Bag: Compatibility between the machine and the material of the bag is important. We can’t stress this enough.
- Can You Find Cutters?: Some vacuum sealers come with cutters as additional components.s these cutters make your work easier since they allow you to easily customize the sizes of your bags.
- Ease Of Use: It should go without saying – you want a machine that won’t be a chore to work with
- How Big Is It?: Depending on where you want to use the machine and the available space, you want to consider the size of the tool itself.
How to Vacuum Seal Bags
Now, let’s take a quick look at how to use vacuum sealer bags. The process is pretty sleek, but you want to begin by focusing more on ensuring that you have a secure seal. So, for that to work, focus on the following flow:
Prepare Your Materials
You’ve gotten your product already, so just make sure that it is properly put in the bag. Take one more second out to check for any particles, and you’re good to go.
Cut The Bag To Size
If you’re making use of a vacuum bag roll, then cut it to the right size. Remember to leave some space at the top of the bag so you’ll be able to air-seal it properly.
Seal The Front End
Take the open end of the bag and seal it with your air-sealing machine. Remember that not all machines will come with a standalone sealing function; if yours doesn’t, then you can move on to the next step.
Put Your Bag In The Sealer
Simply open the vacuum sealer and put the open end of the bag into its channel. From there, close the sealer and check the bag to make sure that it is properly positioned.
Begin Vacuuming As You Desire
Flip the vacuum sealer on and choose the right setting for your operation. Just like that, the machine will begin sucking out the air from the bag. Simply wait for the process to be completed, although depending on the machine and its strength, you probably won’t be waiting for so long.
Close The Bag
After the air is taken out, the machine will air seal the bag – although some machines will require you to basically complete the sealing on your own.
Once this step is complete, remove the bag from the vacuum sealer. Check it to make sure there are no issues, and you should be good to go.
How To Vacuum Seal Liquids
So we understand the process of using vacuum sealing bags if you have to cover a solid material. But, what happens if you’re working with a liquid material instead? How do you handle the sealing for these?
Be More Careful With Bag Selections
When you’re dealing with liquids, your bag must be designed to handle them. Most of these bags are called “liquid block” or “liquid barrier” bags, and they have special designs that ensure the vacuum sealer doesn’t end up sucking the liquid in.
Prepare Your liquid and pour It
Next, you want to make sure your liquid is at room temperature. Then, place it into the bag – like you do with solids, and ensure that there’s enough space above the bag for air sealing.
Finish Your Seal & Close It Up
Seal one of the bag’s ends, then place the open end of the bag into the vacuum sealer. Make sure the sealer is secure as you close it, and properly set the bag.
Vacuum As You Wish
Flip the vacuum sealer on and choose the right setting for your material. Like that, air will be taken from the bag. Before the liquid gets to the sealing area, you can put a hold on the vacuuming process.
If you find that the liquid is getting closer to the sealing region, then pause the process and wipe the sealing area with a towel to take out any excess liquid. Keep the process continual from there – you should be fine.
Check the air seal to make sure there are no imperfections, and you can send our material in to be transported or stored.
Products That You Shouldn’t Vacuum Seal
When you consider vacuum sealing, it’s easy to believe that the entire process can be applied to all materials. But, that notion would be wrong. If you want to ensure that there are no issues with your sealing, here are a few materials you might want to steer clear of:
Vegetables & Soft Fruits: The pressure of a vacuum sealer will pretty much crush berries, lettuce, and other associated fruits.
Mushrooms: With the moisture they contain, mushrooms can also lose their quality due to the process. So, vacuum-sealing food like mushrooms won’t work.
Pastries: Baked goods are moist and soft, and this means that they can also become overly compressed when air sealing is applied to them.
Other materials you want to be careful with include:
- Leafy greens
- Soft cheese
- Eggs still in their shells
- Fried and carbonated food materials
- Flour and whole grains
Important Vacuum Sealing Tips
When you’re conducting the vacuum sealing process, you need to be sure you have your affairs in order. The process is incredibly finicky, so making sure that you’re properly prepared will be important here.
As you go along with the process, try to keep an eye on the following as they could help determine success:
- Your Sealer Must Be Right: First, be sure to choose the correct vacuum sealer that fits your needs.
- Some Things Might Need Pre-Freezing: If you’re working with things like fruits, sauces, and other juicy and moist items, then it helps to pre-freeze them for a bit, so their liquid content remains optimal.
- Always Remember The Spacing Rule: As you package your bags, remember that you need enough space between the items in it and its edge where you’ll create the seal.
- Your Vacuum Sealer Should Be Maintained: This is a very important piece of equipment, and you want to make sure that you have it properly maintained based on the guidelines from the developers.
- Look Out For Folds: Keep an eye out for things like folds and wrinkles in the bag before you go ahead to air seal it. This way, you have the right seal and air re-entry can be prevented.
- Be Careful With Fragile Items: If you’re trying to seal a delicate or fragile item, then control the pressure of vacuuming to ensure that it doesn’t end up getting crushed.
- Storage Is Critical Too: When you’re done with the air sealing, make sure you store your items in a cool place where sunlight won’t be able to reach it.
Vacuum sealing has emerged as one of the most reliable and effective ways to package and protect materials. But, like everything else, you must get things right if you hope to achieve success.
At Sainty Tec, we’re always here to help you out with your vacuum sealing. Feel free to reach out to us if you need any help, as well as if you want additional high-quality tools.