Have you ever wondered how to fix a can opener? It might not be something you’d assume you’d need to spend a lot of time repairing, but like any device, manual and electric can openers can suffer from a range of common problems.
If you want to save on spending and make your devices last a little longer, then learning how to repair this essential tool is a great idea. After all, it could mean you get more than a few uses out of your latest tin opener.
Here’s what you need to know about fixing your can opener at home without speaking to a technical professional.
What Can You Do if Your Can Opener Won’t Work?
There are various reasons why a can opener might not work. The problems that can occur with these tools often differ depending on whether you’re using a manual or electric can opener. However, all devices can eventually break after regular use.
How Do You Fix a Manual Can Opener?
Sometimes, manual can openers break because the cutting wheel becomes dull or gets bent. A manual opener can also rust over time with regular exposure to washing and various liquid substances from cans.
If a manual can opener doesn’t work anymore, consider looking at the various components of this cooking equipment. Check that the cutting wheel rotates properly, and use a paper towel to ensure the circular blade is still sharp enough to cut into a can. It’s also worth cleaning your manual can opener as much as possible. Let’s discuss fixing manual can openers in more detail.
Inspecting the Manual Can Opener
Various small pieces of metal can get stuck between the components in a manual can opener, which causes the blade to become stuck. There’s also a risk that your canned foods will splash various small chunks of food onto the metal of your can opener, causing the material to deteriorate. Unless you have an appliance case for your manual can opener, you could even end up with rust.
Cleaning the Manual Can Opener
To fix problems caused by cleaning issues, use an old toothbrush and a mild detergent or soap to scrub the various components of the manual can opener one at a time. Ensure you get all the gears in your handheld device and rinse everything when you’re done cleaning.
Lubricating the Device
After you’ve given your manual can opener a good wipe clean, you can consider placing a few drops of oil between the gears. You can use standard white lubricant and common household lubricants, like vegetable oil. A few drops of oil should be all it takes to help stop the gears from breaking and ensure the drive wheel can start spinning smoothly again. Stick to a light oil for the best results.
How Do You Fix a Broken Electric Can Opener?
Electric openers can have just as many problems as manual ones. Sometimes, the motor stops when you’re in the middle of using your electric can opener, or the components in these small appliances can eventually deteriorate with extended use.
If you use electric can openers regularly to remove the lid of cans in your home, it’s best to make sure you’re maintaining the appliances properly. Periodic cleaning and regular oiling of the components in your electric openers can fix a range of problems and stop the gears from breaking.
If your electric can openers stop working, it could be because the motor has short-circuited, the grinding wheels are jammed, or the gear isn’t spinning as it should be. The best way to discover the main problem and learn how to repair a can opener is to explore.
If the electric opener can’t run at all, make sure the power is on, and electricity is flowing to the motor. If nothing is working, switch everything off, and give your electric can owners a few minutes to cool down. Remember, some electric can openers take a much longer time to cool down. Cheap ones will need to be left alone for a considerable time.
Let’s look into fixing eclectic openers more thoroughly.
Open Your Electric Can Opener
Use a screen driver to open the plastic housing on your electric can opener so you can see the gear elements within. This way, you should be able to see the main cause of the can opener issues you’re having.
Clean the Gears
Use a stiff brush or a knife to remove the residue from the opener gears, which might have gathered during the cooking process. You can also look for blockages in things like the feed gear or non-forced roller cog, which might stop the gears from spinning.
Replace the Motor
If the electric can opener’s motor isn’t working or the motor’s internal overload protector is broken, you might need to get a replacement part for your can opener. You can also replace various gears and the cutting wheel if necessary.
You shouldn’t need to use any cooking spray or oils on your electric can opener to get it working again properly. However, if the instructions recommend lubricating the feed gear and other gears regularly, you can use a light cooking spray to do this.
How Long Do Can Openers Last?
Learning to fix your can opener ensures you can make the most of your utensil to open cans for longer. Most manual and electric can openers can last for up to 3 years. However, manual can openers can last a lot longer with the right maintenance.
While electric can openers are great for left-handed people and anyone who enjoys cooking, the only downside is that there are more components within these devices that can easily break.
If you’re concerned about your can openers lasting a short time, it might be good to look into a different kind of can opener or learn how to fix your devices yourself.
Making the Most of Your Can Openers
Can openers are one of the best possible utensils to have at home. They ensure you can remove the lid on all kinds of canned products in no time. However, if you start cutting through a lid of a can with your can opener and discover it’s no longer working as it should be, this can be a significant problem.
From the turning piece to applying cooking oil or cooking spray to the gears within, can make your investment last longer. Don’t forget to maintain your can opener too. Using a little cooking spray to lubricate the gears can seem like a headache, but it’s much easier than having to replace your can opener all the time.
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Tom is a former chef turned full-time food blogger. He has always been passionate about food, and loves nothing more than experimenting in the kitchen and sharing his recipes with others. Tom’s blog is one of the most popular food blogs on the internet, and he has won numerous awards for his cooking. When he’s not blogging or cooking, Tom enjoys spending time with his wife and two young children.