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)
If you have any questions, feel free to contact us by phone 801-623-3225 or by email email@example.com.
Aftermarket components and products are produced and sold to consumers in various different markets. It is very common in the consumer technology industry as well as in the automotive industry. Aftermarket products and components / replacement parts usually are an indicator that a certain product is very popular. It is also associated to money savings to the consumer. In the pharmaceutics industry, the term ‘generic’ is often used. Perhaps the latter is not really an aftermarket component in the sense this article is referring to.
Blendtec®, Waring™ MX series of blenders, as well as Vita Mix® blenders are just three blenders from among a few other high performance smoothie blenders, of which a whole ton of are presently in use globally. It is estimated some 100 million of these particular powerful blenders roam the Earth in peoples’ kitchens and restaurants. About 60% of them, according to a study, are not in use. Why they are not in use is not really known. It could be in part a reluctance of user-interest and/or that and being broken down and just never having gotten to it to make a ‘replacement’ attempt of a broken blender blade or jar.
Most people are not very technically inclined. When their jar breaks, or the blade bearing of blade assembly in the jar seizes up, they interpret it as a broken down blender. The blender gets put aside until time and effort is made to make the warranty call, or if the warranty is expired, a new jar is purchased. If the blender is misdiagnosed as dead and broken, not being sure what is bad, time may tell that these high percentage consumers have their ‘broken down’ blender collect dust in storage.
In the case of these blenders, aftermarket components, such as replacement blade assembly cutting units (the knife, or in other words the blades) will be a money saver and a convenient solution, if only the consumer in possession of the broken down Blendtec or Vitamix blender (or Waring and others – non one brand in particular) would dig into finding out more about alternative replacement parts.
It is however not just about replacing a broken part, in the aftermarket industry. Additional jars offer opportunities to have spare parts for just in case, and an additional container for the purpose of alternating blender jars. The Kosher blending enthusiasts of course always use 2 jars. There are certain advantages to the number 2, two jars in possession rather than just one, especially when they are different. Blending is often better in one jar than in another depending on what one blends up.
The Alterna™ Jar, the aftermarket jar reported on in this article, brings several advantages to the table. Current users have reported an increase in finer blending, smoother concoctions, more thorough emulsification. The actual blending capacity is 80 ounces of ingredients. The jar is also, like the OEM factory containers, a BPA-Free copolyester material, with stainless steel removable blade assembly, and tamper stick accelerator tool available.
The advantages are certainly not always enticing to everyone, for example money savings. Some people may find a Blendtec Fourside replacement container for $60 plus shipping. Why would one purchase an aftermarket non-factory container for $80 including shipping? Those that do, are not buying it for immediate savings, or not for money savings reasons at all. The reason for that is that the old type Blendtec jar is always the same, no improvement with a blade that is just going to break again eventually and a new complete whole jar has to bought again, even if the price is only $60 instead of $80. If that same scenario happens with the Alterna Jar, one would have to simply just purchase a replacement jar for $35, instead of $60 for a new jar by Blendtec. Of course, Alterna has a package deal available for real blender enthusiasts, which is the jar with a blade already installed, plus an extra replacement blade for $99, including shipping.
Let’s assume the Alterna blade goes out at the same time the Blendtec blade would seize up, in the Blendtec jar. At that point the OEM factory enthusiast would have spent $120 while the aftermarket consumer fan spent only $99. But, again, not everybody may be interested in the cost factor issue. The Alterna jar blends better, blends bigger volumes, and is a heavier duty jar overall.
Waring MX series blenders, those that are truly 3.5 horsepower monsters, come with rather inferior blade and jar design. The OEM Waring container has a poor warranty, to one hand. On the other hand, the vertical jar wall goes into the bottom of the jar without curvature straight in a straight 90 degrees. There are numerous reports of poor performance and warranty issues and poor customer service. Plus a 2 Liter replacement jar from Waring costs anywhere from $120 to $160. The Alterna aftermarket container configured for the Waring MX series blenders performs better, hold up better and costs less as well.
Vitamix… ditto to Waring.
In conclusion, aftermarket is not for everyone. OEM has its advantages especially when the blender is still under warranty. In Europe or in Asia, Australia and South America, Blendtec and Vitamix warranties are general between 2 to 4 years maximum. Waring already has a 2 in 1 year warranty in the USA which means 2 year parts and 1 year labor. Costs of replacement jars in non-USA markets are mostly prohibitively expensive. In Brazil a Blendtec Fourside jar is $150 USD and $200 has to be coughed up for a Wildside jar. The same in Europe, the UK, in Australia and all over the Asian Rim.
Those consumers that consider the advantage of aftermarket recognize that aftermarket means that the OEM brands are going to stick around more likely longer, aftermarket components will bring the prices down everywhere, and aftermarket blender containers offer a convenience, a choice, a versatility, especially when this one blender jar actually fits on all, Vitamix, Waring, JTC Omni, Klarstein, Optimum, Omega blenders, and the Blendtec blenders.
Note, how the Alterna Jar sits on the various blenders, straight on Blendtec, and diagonally by 45 degrees on Vita Mix, Waring, and JTC Omni blenders. This is a little different than with any other blender jars, but it works, and is actually mostly designed that way so the same container can be used namely on different blender bases, such as the Blendtec and the Waring kinds.
Pros and Cons, if a blender were still under warranty, and consumer wanted to use the aftermarket Alterna jar, it is most likely assumed that the given factory might tell the consumer that such application is not authorized and will likely void the warranty. If the Blender motor might break, such use opens up the question of whether the jar and the aftermarket blade bearing may have contributed to, or perhaps was the cause of premature motor failure. However, there are several issues to that.
If the blade seizes up on any blender jar, it is the consumer's responsibility to stop using it, replacing the whole jar or the blade assembly from the Alterna jar with removable replaceable blade assembly unit. Plus, who is to say that a given consumer has not already over exerted their blender motor when running the blender motor with a seized up blade unit in their jar for far too long of a time and have not noticed it. Sure, if it can be proven that there is a relationship between the Alterna jar aftermarket container and a broken motor, it would only be fair that warranty is assumed, if there is a warranty. However, in every possible scenario, it should be taken into account, that it just cannot be proven. There are too many variables from abuse to a defect from the blender factory to begin with or simply just heavy normal use and therefore wear and tear having lead to an early natural death of said blender motor. It is simple, anyway, it should be considered to always pay close attention to the condition of the blade assembly and bearing, no matter if the user operates an OEM factory brand blender container or an aftermarket blender jar.
In any case, OEM brand factories should be exited about aftermarket blender jar availability. It is a sign that the market has reached a certain saturation and the brand is here to stay. The consumer views more choices and availability as convenient and as a great advantage, actually and eventually bringing down prices and helping to improve quality.
Copyright 2015 (C) Alternajar.com LLC
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.