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Canning -- Miscellaneous
Are there special steps to follow when preparing home canning jars and lids for processing?
Yes, there are specific instructions for selecting, cleaning, and preheating jars, lids and bands prior to use. Always refer to the manufacturer?s instructions. If they are not available, this general information will help. Select home canning jars that have no visible scratches, nicks, chips, or uneven rims. Examine lids to assure they are not scratched, have even and complete compound, and have not been used. Bands should be easy to slide on the jar, without any signs of warping or corrosion. Wash jars, lids and bands in hot soapy water. Rinse well. Dry bands; set aside. Jars and lids must be preheated and kept hot until they are used. To preheat jars and lids, completely submerge them in water that has been brought to a simmer (about 180 F). They should remain at this temperature until they are used, removing one at a time as needed. DO NOT boil lids. If jars are used for any recipe that is processed less than 10 minutes, the jar must be sterilized. To sterilize jars, submerge jars in water and boil 10 minutes. (For altitudes higher than 1,000 feet above seal level, refer to Canning Basics.) Allow sterilized jars to remain at a simmering temperature until they are used. For additional information, see Canning Basics and Step-by-Step. Source: Original FAQ posted at http://www.homecanning.com/usa/alfaq.asp