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Problem with inflating vacuum sealer bags


Montreal
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Any one might have any idea why I am having this problem.

Here is what happen.

About 2 to 3 bags out of 10 end up with air inside.

I have sealed cheese... 2 weeks later some tiny air pocket form inside. About 25% of the time only.

I droped 12 bags of baby pork ribs for 24 hours... They were all good.

I droped a second batch of 8 bags, 1 of them inflated like a baloon.

I had the same experience with a corn on the cub that was sealed SV prior to cooked, the bag swelled like a baloon in the fridge. At first it was just a little bit of air, but then a got curious and left in the fridge to see how far it would go... It did swell like a balloom, litterally.

A few months a go a dis some veal cheeks for 36 hours and when i opened the bag the smell was awfull, like rotting meat.

As a rule of thum I alway trow away any bag that shows sign of air inflitration.

However having to scrap foie gras is a bit frustrating and costly.

I spoke and met with the rep, he looked at the seal of each bag and could not figure out what is going on.

It also happen with dry stuff such a brown sugar or even tea.

Hope to get some answer on this one as i am intrigue on what is going on.

Tks in advance for your input

Dan

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U using standard bags ...or cutting yours to the content ..what happens with standard set time and pre cut bags...u might not be gettingout. All the air. Happens with my chamber too

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Its good to have Morels

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Dont know why u would

.dump your foie

..if u freeze it...especially if your seeing an issue with ur dry content ..well that's me..man don't want to down ur style

Hey. Hope we see other answeres

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I am using 3 mill bags unles the manufacturer made a mistake at the sources as i also own standard bag for packaging and i cannot tell the difference between both type .

The confusing part is that i have air in both type of bags... For cooking and for packaging

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I have foresakin my vacuum sealer ..for a chamber ...o speck ur problem is in the seal...not good if u sous vide.... me...I would consider a new buy...pro saver III or think chamber for 3x the price ...my best investment ever

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From your post, it is not apparent whether you have a chamber machine or a Food Saver type I have a MVS31 chamber machine and find it to be a most valuable component of my kitchen. As I have said previously, yes it is expensive and may not be for everyone's budget, but if they can afford the machine it makes a wonderful addition to the kitchen.

If you are getting air, it may be possible your machine needs calibration to ascertain it is getting proper vacuum. Sometimes with my chamber vacuum if there is too much (call it) humidity or random moisture that causes the machine to have a difficulty in pulling a vacuum. For most consumer machines, it is recommend I believe to cool or freeze product to reduce the moisture. Another thing you should check is whether the seal bar or mechanism is properly closing your bags. They can get dirty and have a build up which does not allow them to seal as well as one would expect. Finally, many items, especially vegetables release air or gases that causes bloat. It is not uncommon for many people to recommend using a sous vide rack like is provided with the Sous Vide Supreme or others will tell you to place a plate or heavy object to keep bags from floating.

"A cloud o' dust! Could be most anything. Even a whirling dervish.

That, gentlemen, is the whirlingest dervish of them all." - The Professionals by Richard Brooks

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The bags that are inflating over time have something growing inside of them. Mold, bacteria, viruses, etc. are consuming the food and producing gases as byproducts. This is why they inflate like a balloon and why the contents smell so bad. Vacuum sealing doesn't sterilize the contents of the bags, you still need to have proper sanitation and follow safe food handling procedures.

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I indeed own a MVS31

As for the calibration i will check with the rep and see what he has to say. As i think that might have 2 different issue here. When after few days i loose my seal on brown sugar, i dont think thay this has something to do with bacteria. However I agree that something is growing in my bag and create balooning. However i cannot pinpoint why it is happening so randomly.

I buy my meat fresh, subdivided in portion and use exclusvely small bags 7 by 9 to cook I then cook SV what i need and refregirate the rest, i rarely freeze my meat... Are you saying that it should be going from freezer to my SV bath directly from the freezer and allow more cookimg time.

I could easily do this, as have some high desity tape and a thermocouple to check my internal temperature if need be.

I have cooked SV Foie gras from fozen and from fresh, both with amazing results. However, i lost a good batch from storing the remaiming fresh foie gras in the fridge for future use...May be i should have frozen it.

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I indeed own a MVS31

As for the calibration i will check with the rep and see what he has to say. As i think that might have 2 different issue here. When after few days i loose my seal on brown sugar, i dont think thay this has something to do with bacteria. However I agree that something is growing in my bag and create balooning. However i cannot pinpoint why it is happening so randomly.

I buy my meat fresh, subdivided in portion and use exclusvely small bags 7 by 9 to cook I then cook SV what i need and refregirate the rest, i rarely freeze my meat... Are you saying that it should be going from freezer to my SV bath directly from the freezer and allow more cookimg time.

I could easily do this, as have some high desity tape and a thermocouple to check my internal temperature if need be.

I have cooked SV Foie gras from fozen and from fresh, both with amazing results. However, i lost a good batch from storing the remaiming fresh foie gras in the fridge for future use...May be i should have frozen it.

How long are you keeping the food in your refrigerator?

Nick Reynolds, aka "nickrey"

"The Internet is full of false information." Plato
My eG Foodblog

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Despite the sometimes misleading propaganda on vacuum sealers and the time you can store food sealed with them, my strong recommendation would be not to exceed conventional storage times that you would apply to fresh foods. It would appear that your food is just going off and the bacteria are releasing gas. I'd go with your own conclusion and freeze it if you are not going to use it very promptly.

Nick Reynolds, aka "nickrey"

"The Internet is full of false information." Plato
My eG Foodblog

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Beyond the MVS31 calibration, you may also want to put a thermometer in the refrigerator to ascertain you have the proper temps for storage. Also, you may want to consider deep cleaning the chamber interior and the white volume plates on a more regular basis. I have a seal bar with a 4mm seal and a cutting wire. From what I recall, there are double seal versions of the bar. Also, I believe they recommend having the sealing go on for about 2.4 seconds when you first have the machine but that later after you have used the machine for a bit that the time can be reduced. Apparently using longer times may cause residue and effect the quality of the seal. Also, they sell new teflon tape and wire if yours need replacement, or you can buy a new bar.

Another debate is whether to wash and dry proteins and vegetables before sealing for storage. I gather thoughts are evenly split about if this causes fewer contaminations or promotes additional ones. Also, I would guess you are bringing home grocery items and then immediately sealing them for storage and not exposing them to items all ready in your refrigerator.

"A cloud o' dust! Could be most anything. Even a whirling dervish.

That, gentlemen, is the whirlingest dervish of them all." - The Professionals by Richard Brooks

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There is nothing wrong with your machine it does not need to be calibrated. Others have said what the problem is. An quite frankly simple logic will tell you. If the bags are swelling it means that nothing is getting out. If nothing is getting out there is no hole in the bag. If there is no hole in the bag, it is sealed.

Sealing meat in a bag without (much) air in it does not mean it will last forever. In fact I don't think that it would last much longer than just wrappin it in saran wrap. Neither magically removes the bacteria that are present.

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humm.. Now you got me thinking... I after a week some of my bag seems to have lost their seal, when in reality it might be Contamination even in my dry stuff such as tea, brown sugar etc...

Could it be that ll my bags were contaminated when i got them?

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I doubt.. if you lost your seal with dry stuff you have contamination.. I leave brown sugar in Tupperware containers.. all the time. If you don't have alot of volume/product in your bags, are you using your volume plates? Try sealing in some water and squeeze the sealed bag,toward the seal see if you have issues?

Cheers

Its good to have Morels

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It's not quite true that an inflating bag means the seal/bag integrity is fine: it simply means that the pressure in the bag is increasing faster than the leak can let it out. In the case of a slow leak I think it may be possible for air to slowly leak into the bag causing air pockets, and then for the rapid temperature increase in the water bath to cause those air pockets to expand faster than the leak can let them out. Of course it's possible that your plastic bags are contaminated, or that somehow you are getting all of these various types of product contaminated with a type of bacteria that can thrive in all of them at the temperatures involved, but I don't think that's the only possible explanation based on the evidence we have before us.

Chris Hennes
Director of Operations
chennes@egullet.org

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hello,

I bought a new chamber vacuum sealer, a minipak MVS 31. Ive been having this problem with it that no matter what i do, change bags and sealers, air does not go away.

When i seal anything under 99.9%, i am always left with air in my bag, regardless if it is a conservation or cooking bag. Every machine ive used before this one always took out all the air and just had less pressure in the chamber so the food would compress less... but it seems that i always need to seal all my foods at 99.9%.... ive never seen this problem before and i am worried it is not normal.

Edited by Calories (log)
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Sounds to me like you might need to calibrate your vacuum pressure gage. You can find instructions for doing that here.

My Guide: A Practical Guide to Sous Vide Cooking, which Harold McGee described as "a wonderful contribution."

My Book: Sous Vide for the Home Cook US EU/UK

My YouTube channel — a new work in progress.

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