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Aug 20, 2011 12:22 AM

Foodsaver non-sealing bags problem~

I've had my original Foodsaver vacuum / thermal seal unit for a little over 2 yrs., it began to (apparently) fail to vacuum air from my bags (heat-sealed fine though) so after a couple hrs of trying to figure out if there was something I was doing wrong (I cleaned moisture trough and inspected seal gaskets) I just gave in and purchased a second (newer generation) Foodsaver unit. I got home and attempted to use the new unit to seal meatballs, this unit failed to vacuum as well. The motor on both units worked fine, just no ability to vacuum air from bags. So, after a couple of hrs of investigating and cursing I stumbled upon an interesting continuity observation. I noticed that some of my Foodsaver (brand) bags had a dimpled texture to the exterior surface of the bags, and some were smooth (untextured). I also noticed that the bags with the spanish label translation tended to be the textured bags and the ones without spanish translation on the bags were the untextured (smooth outer surface) bags. Long story short, the textured bags failed to vacuum everytime and the smooth bags vacuum-sealed every time. Now my problem is that when I search for the smooth (non-textured) bags at Target, Walmart, etc... they cease to exist. I've been opening boxes at many stores (I know that's bad shopper etiquette) to find the smooth bags but they don't seem to exist. I wrote Foodsaver from their website (twice) explaining this issue but have yet to hear back from them. I wonder if they're aware of this manufacturer-flaw issue and choose to deny it's existence. I have several boxes of the textured bags which won't work and can't return them because I haven't the receipts. Needless-to-say, I'm not terribly impressed with Foodsaver.

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  1. I would seriously consider calling the Foodsaver CS. Usually they can help you troubleshoot your problem

    1. I've been using the textures bags and haven't had a problem.

      1. Textured bags work great in mine.

        1 Reply
        1. re: BIGGUNDOCTOR

          Same here. Even the off brand ones I bought off Ebay.

        2. The ones I have are smooth on one side and textured on the other. And seal well except when I don't get them flat. I had a problem once with sealing and took the rubber gasket out and washed it well, and carefully, returned it to the machine and Voila, success. I love my 5 yr old FoodSaver.
          Now I wonder what kind of bags I will find when I shop, as I'm almost out.
          Good Luck troubleshooting with FoodSaver Customer Service.

          6 Replies
          1. re: Nanzi

            I use my FoodSaver constantly. (I read somewhere that it is American women's #1 favorite "gadget".) When mine started failing to seal, I called Customer Service and was told to remove the gaskets and flip them over, that there were grooves pressed into them over time that allowed air to enter and prevent sealing. The very nice Customer Service guy also said that if simply turning them over didn't solve the problem, then I needed to purchase new gaskets which are available from FoodSaver. I flipped them and the problem was solved. If and when it happens again I will wash them first, before ordering new ones --- thank you Nanzi!

            1. re: ski_gpsy

              Same experience here. The OP very well may not have needed to buy a new one, because if the motor and heat seal work, but suction isn't happening, it's the gaskets.
              The gaskets wear out from the compression.
              I replaced my gaskets and now do NOT store my Food Saver in the locked position.

              1. re: monavano

                Good tip Monavano about NOT storing in the locked position. I didn't know that.

                I do know that I need a new gasket, but after a few seconds of not sealing, I remember to remove the gasket and wet it so that it plumps up. That will keep it sealing until I remember to order a new gasket!

                1. re: ski_gpsy

                  Wetting it worked as a temporary solution for me too.

              2. re: ski_gpsy

                EXCELLENT! Something I'd never considered. Thanks a mil.

              3. re: Nanzi

                I have what you have. We're pretty good about wiping off and out the bottom part but hadn't done the top gasket. That seemed to cure the problem with 'sucking' :)

              4. i hadn't used mine in about seven months, and when I tried it I was having the same problem...not vacuuming the air from the bags. I went to read the instructions and realized that i was putting it in the slot incorrectly. Go back and read your instructions again, maybe that is what is happening.