Vacuum sealers are very useful in the kitchen, especially in extending food shelf life. But aside from perishable foods, vacuum packing also works for non-food items. With this technique and custom-sized bags, you can make household things waterproof, organised or dust-free! Here are other ideas that can make your vacuum sealer even more versatile.
1. Metallic Items
Air exposure causes items made of silver, copper or bronze to tarnish. Yes, there are metal cleaners or polish available. But rust requires elbow grease to remove. Plus, even after all that soaking and scrubbing, it can leave irreversible damage to your metallic items.
So, the solution is to avoid corrosion altogether. And currently, vacuum packing is the best way to do it. Here are some metal items you can keep shiny and new through vacuum packaging:
- Cutlery or silverware. If your prized set doesn’t come with a storage box, you can wrap the pieces in thin cloth before vacuum sealing. This extra wrapping prevents sharp knives or forks from puncturing the bag. Better yet, you can seal them in double bags for added protection.
- Coins. Here’s one of the smartest methods to keep vintage coins in mint condition for years! Cut vacuum sealing bags to size or purchase small pouches to fit individual coins. Then use an external or handheld-type sealer to keep them rust-free.
- Jewellery. Gold tends to discolour after some time. So, protect your expensive accessories using a vacuum packaging machine. Make sure to store them in a drawstring pouch or wrap them in a thin cloth first to avoid sharp edges from damaging the bag.
- Fishing gear. If you only go out fishing on particular seasons, vacuum sealing your hooks, pliers or scissors should protect them from corrosion. It will keep your tackle box in order, too.
2. Documents and Photos
Like metals, paper can deteriorate due to elements such as moisture, air and dust. Disasters like pipe leaks, flood or storm can also cause paper damage. So, before any of these happen, preserve your birth certificates, insurance or bank documents, passports and photos using your vacuum packaging machine.
Rather than a more permanent laminator, a vacuum sealer can waterproof printed files and make them easy to grab in case of emergencies. More importantly, as one needs to cut the plastic bag to get its contents, vacuum sealing protects your documents from unauthorised access.
3. Prized Printed Materials
Books hold important memories like childhood happiness or family love. Unfortunately, storing these mementos in cabinets or shelves is not enough to prevent discolouration or mould growth. With a vacuum packaging machine, you get to protect the quality of every page. Collectors of well-preserved comics and out-of-print books can even resell their collection in the future at a higher price. For thin magazines or newspaper clippings, you can insert a piece of cardboard inside the vacuum bag to avoid wrinkling.
4. Media Products and Electronics
Do you often create backups of your files using CDs or DVDs? Or perhaps you have a movie collection or family videos you want to preserve? Vacuum sealing them in their hard cases is the best way to keep air and dust away. You can do this storage technique for vinyl records, cords, USBs and flash drives as well.
5. Travel Essentials
We Aussies love travelling and camping. The problem is gadgets like mobile phones, watches and GPS units are prone to water damage. Sealing them in vacuum bags solves this problem. It’s also a better alternative than storing your toiletries and medications in zippered pouches.
Rather than bring a bulky first aid bag on your next outdoor adventure, seal your band-aids and ointments in more compact vacuum bags instead. If you often travel with liquid soap, shampoo and cosmetics, vacuum packing them will protect your backpack from messy spills, too.
6. Homemade Bug Out Bag
A bug out bag or BOB is your key to survival for 36 to 72 hours in case of a disaster. Aside from water and food supplies, things to keep you warm or protect you from danger are also vital.
So, prep essentials like fire starter kits, flashlights, batteries and a survival knife. Make sure to have proper rain gear and clothes, too. Then, to keep them dry and ready for use, store them in sealed vacuum bags. This way, you’re keeping you’re BOB organised and lightweight as well. You can also create a small BOB for your car if you want.
7. Christmas Ornaments
Here’s a typical scenario after Christmas: you’ll pile all decorations in a cardboard box then allow them to collect a year’s worth of dust. Then come decorating time, dust goes flying out while you go on a sneezing frenzy. Do away with this inconvenient tradition by vacuum sealing your ornaments instead. First, sort them and decide which can be packed together in one bag. Next, get a damp cloth and wipe away any dust from each before sealing.
I especially like how garlands and wreath shrink inside vacuum-sealed bags, making them more space-efficient. Vacuum sealing is also ideal for preserving your DIY Christmas decorations. For delicate glass ornaments and lights, make sure to arrange them in neat rows to avoid scratching. You can also vacuum seal holiday candles and potpourri. This way, you’ll keep their great scent longer. Aside from seasonal décor, you can vacuum seal your winter clothing and bulky blankets as well.
8. Toys and Crafts
Small toys and craft supplies can easily get misplaced. Your vacuum sealer can keep them in order and protect them from dust at the same time. Try vacuum packing your kids’ puzzles so they can play with complete pieces every time. Make sure to save a picture of the completed puzzle before disposing of the box, though! Sealing clay and paint prevents them from drying out. And instead of using bulky jars or containers, you can store buttons, beads and ribbons in vacuum sealing bags. This way, you can stack them together and save space.