I could be talking about healthy foods this time. But what our business is really about is healthy equipment so you can blend up your healthy foods. You have already a great blender, either that being a Blendtec, Vita Mix, Waring, or an Omni blender.
Blenders don’t easily break, but the blades and jars wear out. Sometimes blades wear quicker. So let’s go over a few things to help you extend the life of your blender blades and jars, regardless of what brand of a blender you have.
Problems and solutions (most common) that could arise during blending:
Blade bearings (and bushings) can seize up - Rinse and dry by hand only
Jars can crack - Keep bottom plate tightened
If you blend heavy low-water-content ingredients (puree) you can get temporarily stuck or have a little delay getting the vortex / swirling of the smoothie miracle going - Use a tamper or when blending smoothies, make sure the solids to water ratio is right for the vortex
Problem 1: When you over-expose a blade bearing of your blender jar to water too much, water gets into the blade assembly housing and will wash out grease. You will see rust powder coming out on the bottom end of the blade assembly at the gear seal. This leads to damage to the bearings which then will not turn smoothly anymore. Bearings are getting hot already when they are in good condition. They become much louder and hotter when there is more friction due to bad bearings. This will lead to oil exit on the bottom outside of the where the gear sticks out of the blender container. When the blade seizes it can also transfer energy to the drive socket and snap it or strip it (Drive socket is on the blender motor).
With the Blendtec blender jars (Wildside, Fourside, Twister), as the picture above left indicates, the blades are permanent fix installed. If that breaks, you cannot just change the blade assembly, but you have to change the entire jar. There is a big advantage if you have a jar with a removable blade assembly because you just change the blade – see to the right – if you run into a problem. That said, there are in both cases preventative solutions that can help you preserve the blade assembly bearing and help you get more usage out of it
Solution 1: Always wash or rinse the blender jar by hand and then dry by hand to limit water exposure. For additional sanitizing, use a non-caustic water-diluted spray on sanitizing solution to briefly apply to the inside of the jar. Don’t leave jar in sink with water puddle or wash in dishwasher. If your blade has seized up, or shows signs of seizing (roughness of turning, noisier blending, smoke / smell), replace the blade right away to prevent further damage to the driver socket.
Problem 2: Jars, if they do crack, they mostly crack on the very bottom around the hole where the blade assembly inserted into the jar. This occurs mostly when the blade assembly is starting to seize up or has already seized and you keep blending with it and in addition the bottom plate may not be completely tight, or tight enough.
Solution 2: Make sure the blade assembly works well and there is no rust around the gear. If there is and/or you experience leakage on the bottom, immediately remove the blade assembly and inspect the jar and the blade. Replace the blade if the jar is still good. Or else replace the whole jar with blade. We do have new better working blending jars with sharp efficient advanced blending knives. Frequently check the bottom plate to see if you can manage turning it clockwise to tighten it, to make sure it stays tightened.
Problem / Solution 3: Simple, if you get stuck or your blender has a hard time getting the ingredients blended or started up, either add more liquid, or if liquid is not part of your recipe, use a tamper stick specifically designed for the use with your blender jar. In our case, we have a Universal Tamper that can be adjusted to work with any blender jar, from Blendtec to Waring or Hamilton Beach. Make sure you use the tamper to push down on ingredients with the flanges positioned correctly to avoid touching the blades and only inserting the tamper through the lid hole with the cap removed, the lid on the jar, of course.
If your Universal tamper accidentally touches the blade knives during blending, this is not a serious problem for the tamper. The material is a food grade FDA approved material, but it is not edible. You will lose your smoothie. But you can save the tamper with sand paper and/or a saw. The Universal Tamper is solid.
If the flanges come apart, use tape to secure the flanges. If you use a wooden tamper it will splinter into oblivion unfortunately and if you use a tamper made with injection molding plastic, it will break and not be usable anymore. If you do not have a tamper, I suggest you get one, even if think you never need one or needed one before. It takes only one time of difficult blending when you lose your hand or your fork. Never insert a fork, knife, or spoon into your blender jar during blending to push down on ingredients.
Even blenders made to work well without the use of a tamper need a push every now and then. And if you have a blender from a factory that recommends regular usage of a tamper to eliminate their air pocket, you will find, with the right solid – to – liquid ratio, you do not need to use the tamper.
Please check out our new Alterna Jars, sharp blades, advanced finer better smoother blending, interchangeable between Blendtec – Vita Mix – Waring – Omni, etc… blending volume of 80 ounces. Now available with a $10 OFF discount. Use Coupon code $10AlternaOFF (use with purchase $80 and up – good till supply lasts and/or subject to be discontinued without notice)
The Alterna Jar is basically made to fit 2 different type of blenders. One is the Blendtec blender series. The other is the 'other' blender group, which is basically all the same, when it comes to blender jar compatibility.
They all fit on each others' blender platform, in other words. These are the Waring 3.5 hp blenders (not anything else from Waring), the Vita Mix type blenders, the Omni by JTC, and all their associated private label brands - all the same, basically, when it comes to their jars fitting onto one and the other blender.
The Blendtec blenders' motor turns clockwise and the Blendtec blender base comes with a drive socket attached to the motor axle permanently, metal on metal, no clutch. A clutch would be a way out to absorb energy (bad energy that could break the motor). And the Blendtec blender jars have permanently installed blades that cannot be removed, taken out without breaking the jar and/or the blade bearing assembly, and the blades are not sharp either.
As a matter of fact, Blendtec apparently insists that their blades perform better dull than any other sharpened blades / knives. The only beef with that is however that a dull sword does not cut off heads as easy or as clean as a sword that has a very sharp edge. Also a dull shear machine, if you get your hand in it, instead of cutting off your fingers clean, it will likely pull in your whole hand and arm etc.... you get the point. Bottom line, sharpened is better, no matter who you talk too. That said, and the point is, the blades in the Alterna Jar are sharp, very sharp. For Blendtec applications, the blade in the jar has been sharpened on the right side, ... because the knives are rotating right ways - clockwise.
The drive socket gear is smaller in the Blendtec blenders, so of course the blade assembly in the Alterna jar for the Vita Mix blenders does fit into the Blendtec drive socket. Three things then; The Alterna blade assembly for the use in the Alterna jar on top of the Blendtec blender has a removable blade assembly that is sharpened, turns clockwise, and has the appropriate gear to fit on all Blendtec blenders, except with use in a sound enclosure. For that, there is a new jar on its way in the early 2016.
The blades therefore being different for the use in the Alterna Jar on top of the Waring 3.5 hp blenders and it's alike-kind-type blender bases. The knives are sharpened on the left side of the blade because it turns counter-clockwise. The gear is larger thicker because the drive socket part of that area of the blender motor axle is larger.
Then how do these different Alterna Jar configurations sit on each of these blenders? The Alterna Jar sits on the Blendtec blenders just normal, line its original Wildside or Fourside jar, straight and square. Remember, the Alterna jar was made with the intention that it also fits on the other kind blenders, like Waring, Omni, Vitamix,.... That in mind we engineered the bottom base of the jar in a way that just by turning the jar 45 degrees in an angle it would also fit on the other kind blender bases, thus missing the rubber cushion stubs.
People or restaurants that have both type of blenders, have the opportunity to switch the blade assembly out accordingly and use the Alterna Jar on both blenders. It is not so much that one should switch back and forth between the two uses. Mostly it is advantageous for restaurants that have Blendtec blenders in their shop and want to switch their blender equipment to Waring or Vitamix, for example. They don't have to buy all new jars. A Blade assembly is so much more inexpensive.
First off, the Alterna jar fits on Blendtec blenders, Vitamix, JTC Omni, Waring 3.5 hp blenders, and all same kind alike platforms, aka the high powered really good and expensive blenders, usually. Second, if your blade assembly (in the case of the Blendtec jar, your bushings) have seized up or are in the process of wearing and bogging down and starting to seize, you need to look at repairing your blender container. Blendtec cannot be repaired - you have to buy a new jar - or consider a jar with replacement blade for your Blendtec blender (check warranty of your blender and jar before you spend money).
This following video gives you some good ideas about how to repair your blender jar or replace your container blade assembly. There is not much difference from blender to blender, if they are Vitamix, JTC Omni, Klarstein, Hamilton Beach, Optimum,... Again, if you happen to have a Blendtec container, the Wildside or the Fourside jar, then watch the video anyway to get a good idea of how advantageous a jar with removable blade can be.
Thanks for watching. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us.
Blenders for the delicious smoothie concoction production are employed in restaurants, smoothie shops, or at home among many people in the world. These blenders come with different features, different sizes of containers, their blades / motors turning in either direction, sharp or dull blades / knives and various different designs of blade knife shapes. The issue discussed here is however the pros and cons of blenders and their jars with a removable or a fixed installed blade assembly.
A removable blade assembly is a blade cutting unit containing the knives connected to a shaft that connects to the blender gear. In between is a bearing that keeps the assembly turning smoothly without interruption. These bearings are a conglomerate of steel, usually carbide steel balls sealed up like also seen and used in roller blades. This sealed bearing unit is inside a housing along the shaft that is sealed from both ends in and outside of the jar to prevent water from leaking through either direction.
The blade assembly is inserted into the jar from the inside, sitting it into a hole on the bottom of the blender container. The blade assembly has a threaded area on the bottom. As inserted, from the outside a so-called nut or blade bottom plate, also known as a blade retaining nut (depending on who is the manufacturer), is then screwed onto the thread. This tightens and seals the blade assembly inside the jar to the container bottom and on the outside bottom. In between the bottom plate and the jar is a O-Ring gasket inserted that prevents water from entering.
Various styles of blades knives exist. Most companies use a 4 part or even a 6 part knife assembly where 4 to 6 knives protrude from the center shaft on top of the blender cutting assembly into different directions. Some of these ends point upwards 45 degrees, some are about horizontal, and others point down.
The blending results vary depending on the blade design together in connection with the layout and design of the blender container subject to specific interaction. The best type of blades are sharpened knives, sharp is better than dull.
These type of blades are usually made for jars that sit on blender motors which turn counter-clockwise. This is really for no scientific particular reason. At least some few smoothie and raw food gurus might claim there could be a cosmic harmony at play if the blender motor and the knife cutting assembly turn with the earth rotation, which is counter-clockwise. This may however at the minimum be really far-fetched from a credible reality.
Blender brands such as Vita-Mix, Waring, Hamilton Beach, JTC Omniblend, Omega, Kitchenaid, along that line, a few among many other blenders, have motors that turn counter-clockwise. In general, and usually, the more expensive upper-blender class has jars with very sturdy durable blade units that are screwed on from the outside of the blender container. The cheaper low-end blenders like Kitchenaid, Oster, Cusineart, and low end Hamilton Beach have much thinner units and also have to come off every time a jar needs washing.
Washing a jar with the blade installed or taken out should always be an option. Taking the blade out may also have the associated benefit to replace if the bearing might be worn out or simply has seized up due to age and wear and tear. It is just more sanitary if a user has the option and discretion to remove the whole blade assembly unit for cleaning, or for replacement if broken, or for sharpening or re-sharpening… any kind of maintenance.
Usually those companies that offer blender jars with removable or replaceable blade assembly cutting units, also offer a jar without blades by itself and the blade assembly by itself.
The bearings of these type of blades are prong usually to seize when over-exposed to water either through washing them in the dishwasher or soaking the jar and the blades inside the sink. It is possible that water could get into the bearing housing, although not likely or it won’t happen easily. It will happen over time due to wear and tear, and then the blade needs to be replaced, one of the advantages a removable blade – type blender container has over a container with a fixed installed blade, because that too tends to seize up.
As far as it is known, only Blendtec® offers a blender jar type with a fixed permanently installed blade. Instead of however equipped with ball bearings, these assemblies consist of bushings. A bushing is as opposed to balls (bearings) depending on a specific design, a buffer, a cushion type of two ends that are greased up and rub against each other in a manner that little friction arises, as little as possible.
In the cases of the Blendtec Jars, either Wildside®, the Fourside®, or the Twister® Jar, Blendtec uses such a bushing instead of ball bearings. This allows for a much smaller housing around the shaft that must stay lubricated to easily turn and follow the torque forced onto the dual wing-tipped blade assembly. By the way, Blendtec blades are not sharp.
The advantage of a bushing is that is uses up less space than the ball bearings in a housing and therefore can be installed closer to the motor gear, of course in respect to other blenders, that being really minimal. The disadvantage is that bushings are usually not as strong and durable as ball bearings.
Water still can get into the though hermetically sealed off blade shaft bushing housing, especially and controversially associated to the lack of usage. Water and usage usually keeps and helps to keep the bushing seal area lubricated and seal. If it dries out too long especially after usage it can often happen that the seal separates and the bushing seizes up and you can’t no longer use the container .
These types of bushing-operated blender blades are not replaceable. Sure they are removable and replaceable if one had the tools to remove them and put them back in once cleaned up and repaired. Consumers, especially however restaurant shop and smoothie shop operators tend to move away from fixed blade blender jars because of the cost factor. They have to replace the whole jar, which is still good and usable, however just because removable blade features are not available.
Other advantages of have a blender jar with the option to remove and replace blades is not just for the purpose of repair and maintenance, but also for opening the door to use and facilitate different styles of blades. Of course a controversy exists that one blade may do it all. But it has been proven, although in general it is true that even a dry blade can blend up wet ingredients, a wet blade also blends very effectively dry grain wheat ingredients and coffee, and ice too can be blended with any of the various blade and knife design setups, that differences and high efficiency outcomes vary subject to blade design. A smoothie shop that makes one kind of an ice type smoothie may over time help to save energy and even prolong the life of the jar and the blades all together as opposed to using a more generic blade assembly unit.
As introduced up on top, blending is done with much variable consideration to the design of the jar, the blades, and the sharpness, as well as the power of the motor, and believe it or not, also of how the ingredients are placed inside a jar, in which order, if hard solid frozen or fresh soft is on top or bottom. Even the use of a tamper adds to the variable of blending effectiveness.
Tampers are mostly only used when the consistency of the ingredients is more solid than liquid – it’s a liquid to solids ratio issue in most cases. As long as the blender unit can turn and create a vortex, the action in which the blades propel all ingredients in a turning action and creating a liquefying emulsifying texture of the ingredients, no tamper is needed. Getting stuck, especially when making intentionally solids purees or paste, even nut butters, some kind of a stir stick, aka plunger (ouch – not toilet related) can just give the push to get that vortex going or to stir the puree into a fine creamy concoction.
Sharper blades can cut better. That is definitely demystified. No way that dull knifes are better than sharp knives. The consumer and commercial smoothie market will soon see the Blendtec blender industry with sharpened knives. As a matter of fact, a company called Alterna jars already has come out with sharpened knives, they are also removable and replaceable, of course. The Alterna jar is made to fit on the Blendtec blenders, as well as with a simple blade assembly switch, will fit also on those blenders that turn counter-clockwise.
Elements of Warranty for Alterna™ Jar Blender Products
An extended warranty is at times known as service contract, service agreement or maintenance agreement. It refers to prolonged warranty availed to consumers, apart from the standard warranty covering new items. This form of warranty could be provided by the retailer, warranty administrator or manufacturer. Alterna offers a 1 year extended warranty for extra payment on top of its regular standard limited warranty.
A product deteriorates naturally with usage and this fact is not measurable in entirety due to the many variables it involves. Generally, a factory because of the feedback it receives and the product is sees, gets a good idea about wear and tear and what may be coverable under warranty. Inappropriate cleaning, storage or application arising from negligent action could for instance lead to excessive wear and tear. Product warranty does not apply in such cases. Alterna™ Blender Jar LLC extends warranty for its different products against defects under its limited warranty coverage, regardless of whether the product has been used or not.
The customer has to return the product for a claim to be valid, along with prepaying postage of stated warranty return. Warranty is subject to return authorization being provided via email or phone. The company reserves its right of authorizing other ways of demonstrating warranty coverage, such as through videos, email or even pictures. The warranty offered on Alterna Jar for instance, implies that the company can either replace or repair the product at their discretion as seems reasonable at its discretion. The key word is “REASONABLE”, reasonable to both, the company and the customer.
It is important not to use the jar if the blade bearings are either already or in process of seizing up. Performing manual checking and turning of blades back and forth from outside using the gear on regular basis can help in detecting such incidence. Leaks at the bottom outside of blade assembly or rough feel when turning blade are also indicative of the bearings wearing out, which normally happens prematurely in cases of the jar and blades having been washed in the dishwasher, soaked in the sink, or abused in some other forms. Such situations would warrant replacement upon verification by the manufacturer, however, with limitations. The following warranty conditions apply to Alterna products:
Alterna Blender Jar LLC offers warranty of 1 year against defects on both jar and blade unit installed originally in the Alterna jar. This warranty is limited to only the first combination of jar and blade purchased and 1 year warranty is offered to a consumer who buys a complete jar with its blade.
Warranty of 6 months is provided by Alterna Blender Jar LLC covering against factory material or assembly defects for replacement blades. The warranty of replacement blades bought directly from the company for a blade replaced from jar with expired warranty is 6 months.
Customers can purchase an extended warranty of 1 year PLUS for complete purchase of Alterna Jar at the time of purchase. Such extended warranty lasts for 1 year, which thus adds a 2nd year to the initial warranty of 1 year. The same limitations apply as well.
Flange rings of the Universal Tamper carry warranty of 90 days against breakage within the region where the two flange rings of identical nature clip and snap together. The rod or dowel is itself not under warranty as it only breaks if blended up, which results due to acts of misuse or negligence. It is either because the flange assembly is placed on the rod at the incorrect location (too long – reaches the blades), the tamper is used without the lid in place, or the user pushed down too hard thus bending and flexing the lid excessively and the tamper therefore touches the blade and gets damaged. Customers should notify Alterna Blender Jar LLC within 30 days following its purchase, if flange pieces fail to install owing to sections being wrongly milled.
Alterna Blender Jar LLC will also replace the motor unit of a competitor blender such as Vita Mix, Waring and Blendtec under certain circumstances. This is if the buyer can prove the Alterna Jar along with its blade despite proper usage, directly caused damage to such motor unit. This part of the warranty is challenging to prove because normally blender motors only break due to a problem in the blender motor itself and not because of the blade. A motor gets worn out due to what is blended inside the jar, and if the user blends with a blade assembly that seizes up. Old age, and normal wear and tear is certainly not covered.
Disclaimer: This article is not the official Alterna Blender Jar warranty. Please see www.alternajar.com for specific warranty details.