Pros: Simple use and clean up, Rolled plastic or pre-cut bags, Cheaper than the Food Saver
Cons: Bags are not cheap
We've owned the Kenmore Select Seal-n-Save for over a year and love the machine. I was first introduced to these products several years ago when I picked up the Tilia Food Saver for my mother at Christmas. Once I saw how much she used and liked the product, I decided it would be a smart idea for us as well. I ended up purchasing the Tilia Mini version but quickly realized it wasn't the best option for us. On a trip to Sears we saw this machine and ended up bringing it home since it better suited our needs over the small Tilia Mini version we were using.
The Kenmore Select Seal-n-Save is designed to store food and keep it fresh up to 5 times longer than regular food storage methods such as freezer wrap. Sealing your frozen foods will nearly eliminate the problem of freezer burn and keep food tasting better, longer. Owning this machine allows us to still buy in bulk or purchase the family packs at reduced prices and still eliminate waste. Since the kids have gone off to college or on their own we can still enjoy the savings of larger packaged meats and other food and easily split them into separate convenient sizes.
There is some great features that make the job extremely simple. First there's the fact that you can store a roll right in the device so there is no need to hunt down a roll every time you want to begin sealing and storing your food. Also included is an easy to use cutting bar integrated right into the machine. Simply slide out the desired length of plastic and run the cutting blade leaving the desired size bag for the job.
The machine's electrical cord is easily wrapped and hidden from sight underneath the body of the device making it easier to store. The Kenmore Select Seal-n-Save is not a small appliance. With dimensions of 4"H x 16.5"W x 9.5"D, it will take up a bit of cupboard space but I believe the resulting convenience and savings far outweigh this minor issue.
You will like the fact this machine is extremely easy to clean if or when you get it dirty. The touchpad on the sealer is a flat style design that allows you to simply wipe it down - no buttons to clean around. Secondly the drip tray where juices may collect can be removed and easily cleaned. As a matter of fact the entire body of the device is made of a high gloss plastic that wipes clean without a problem.
We purchased this machine with the freezer in mind but we have since found more uses. For instance, we used to throw out blocks of cheese on a regular basis. Once the package is opened the storage times were always minimal. Not any more! Now we cut what we currently want off the block of cheese after removing the original packaging and seal it with our Kenmore Select Seal-n-Save leaving a little extra plastic. When we need some additional cheese, simply open the seal, cut off a portion of the block and reseal the package. This alone has paid for the machine in our house.
Along with your vacuum sealer, you will receive 3 pre-cut quart bags, 2 pre-cut gallon bags, 1-11" bag roll and a vacuum seal hood (with accessory hose) for use with Seal-n-Save canisters. We have yet to use and do not own the Seal-n-Save canisters but should you care to, they are available. These canisters are sealed by connecting the included vacuum hose to the machine's vacuum port and sealing clear, hard plastic containers which are sold separately. I would think this would be a great idea for those with a second home who would like to save staple foods like rice, sugar or flour from humidity and insects.
The cost of the Kenmore Select Seal-n-Save runs just under $100. I'm sure this price is still something less than the better known Tilia Food Saver can be found. From my experience with both machines, you will be just as satisfied with the Kenmore version. After a year or so my mother did experience an issue with the Tilia machine. It began giving her trouble sealing the bags but to the manufacturer's credit, she was asked to it back and they did replace her's with a newer and even bigger machine at no cost.
Outside of the rather high cost of the bags or plastic rolled material, I have to still give the Kenmore Select Seal-n-Save a full five star rating here at Epinions. The $95 we dropped on this machine has more than paid for itself. In these days where we're all trying to cut a few corners and save a couple of dollars you may find this a really smart buy.