Add to My MSN

Why Canning Jars Break

8/22/2012 5:54:27 AM

Tags: Why Do Jars Break While Canning, Why Do Canning Jars Break, Broken Jars, Weak Jars, Canning Accidents, Why Did My Jars Break, Floating Canning Jars, Amy Dingmann

In farm life, there is always something happening to keep you humble.

I'm not new to canning, but last week I experienced something that had never happened before. When I opened my water bath canner to remove seven jars of fabulous dill pickles...three jars were floating.

Floating jars? What does that mean?

Upon carefully removing the jars, I discovered I had a mess on my hands. For I had one...

 jar 1 


 jar 2
 and three jars....

 jar 3
whose bottoms all popped off while in the canner.

I just stared into the bowl. Broken jars, and wasted pickles. That's enough to make a farmgirl mad!

I asked around to my farmgirl friends who informed me there are many reasons that jars can break in the canner, but it is most often because a) a cooled off jar was put into a canner that was too hot, b) a hot jar was put into canning water that was too cold, or c) the jar was already cracked or weak when put into the canner.

Well, darn it. Live and learn. Farm life keeps you humble, for sure! I know they say there is no point in crying over spilled milk, but I do think shedding a tear over wasted pickles is probably acceptable. :)

Content Tools

Post a comment below.


8/23/2012 12:32:56 AM
Amy, I had one of my jars of tomatoes that did the same thing. I didn't do anything different from the other times I water bathed canned them but one out of four broke. Another one didn't seal. I have never had either of these issues in the past. Who knows what the issue was. Have a great canning day.

Pay Now & Save 50% Off the Cover Price

First Name: *
Last Name: *
Address: *
City: *
State/Province: *
Zip/Postal Code:*
(* indicates a required item)
Canadian subs: 1 year, (includes postage & GST). Foreign subs: 1 year, . U.S. funds.
Canadian Subscribers - Click Here
Non US and Canadian Subscribers - Click Here

Live The Good Life with Grit!

For more than 125 years, Grit has helped its readers live more prosperously and happily while emphasizing the importance of community and a rural lifestyle tradition. In each bimonthly issue, Grit includes helpful articles, humorous and inspiring articles, captivating photos, gardening and cooking advice, do-it-yourself projects and the practical reader advice you would expect to find in America’s premier rural lifestyle magazine.

Get your guide to living outside the city limits delivered straight to your mailbox. Subscribe to Grit today!  Simply fill in your information below to receive 1 year (6 issues) of Grit for only $19.95!


At Grit, we have a tradition of respecting the land that sustains rural America. That’s why we want you to save money and trees by subscribing to Grit through our automatic renewal savings plan. By paying now with a credit card, you save an additional $5 and get 6 issues of Grit for only $14.95 (USA only).

Or, Bill Me Later and send me one year of Grit for just $19.95!