Monday, April 18, 2016

Glass Storage Jar Lid Protection

Given the need for relatively small storage containers of bulk goods in our small-ish kitchen, we've settled on two-gallon all-glass jars.  They seem to be a good compromise between size, price, aesthetics, and non-plastic-ey-ness.

Brown sugar jar
They also take well to chalkboard paint labels, which is nice.

Chipped glass jar lid
We've been overall pretty happy with them, except for one small thing: the lids are fragile.

Inevitably, it happens that as we're clumsily putting them away, we'll bump something with the jar (usually the shelf we're trying to set it on), and the lid and jar will collide in just the right manner to break off part of the lid's inner rim.  With the sugar containers, we can dissolve the sugar in water, filter out the broken glass, and drink the sugar water like hummingbirds. (Which is awesome, but slightly inconvenient when we were planning to make something else with the sugar. Plus, Katie just loves it when Jake goes full hummingbird).  But with the flour containers, we've got to just toss the broken glass-contaminated flour.  Throwing food away makes us sad.

So, we've been pondering solutions to this problem for a while, and this weekend (while trapped inside by a snowstorm!) we came up with something that works well, while arguably not damaging the jar aesthetics too much.  First, we tried making a rubber o-ring with some leftover pond liner from our aquaponic grow bed, but found it was hard to get a good fit because the inner rim of the lid (the fragile part) is tapered.  Thus, it's hard to fit a sheet of rubber on to it.  Fortunately, we also had some leftover silicone caulk sealant from the butcher block counter top.

Padded jar lid
We applied a bead of the sealant around the inner rim, then smoothed it out with a flat head screwdriver.  We're definitely not professionals, but it works.  (Done is better than perfect, right?) If we were going to do it again, we'd probably tape the flat part to keep it from getting dirty, because it turns out this stuff sticks really well to glass and isn't easy to peel off.

Padded jar lid close up
Here's a close-up.  In the background, you can see the same stuff sealing the butcher block counter to the wall.

Padded lid on jar, side view
When it's on the jar, it's hard to tell it's there from most angles.  (Other than the fact that putting the lid on the jar is now much less...well, jarring.)

Padded lid on jar, top view
Even looking straight down, it's not that noticeable.  If we were starting from scratch, we'd probably get the clear silicone sealant, but for the sake of whatchagotics, we're glad the white doesn't look too bad.

Have you protected glass lids on your jars?  How did you do it?

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