This article, The Best Commercial Vacuum Sealer for Home Use, was last updated July 2018
The average American household wastes about $2500 worth of food in a year. If a vacuum sealer helps save even half of that, then a commercial sealer will pay for itself in about half a year!
If you're interested in a premium quality commercial vacuum sealer, this article is for you!
Some people want a bargain vacuum sealer. Maybe they're on a budget. Maybe they want to try out an inexpensive sealer because they don't know if they'll like it or use it. Maybe they'll only use it once or twice a month, so they don't feel justified in a big investment. And all of those reasons make perfect sense.
But then there are the folks who want the heavy duty stuff. Maybe they'll use their sealer so frequently they want one built to last. Maybe they've gone through a few lower end sealers and want to invest in something better. Maybe they (like me) just appreciate the heft and quality of a well-made machine. Or maybe they just want something they can use to seal liquids as well as solids.
Whatever their reasons, purchasing a commercial quality vacuum sealer is rarely something that people regret. It's a valuable kitchen tool that pays for itself in food savings, usually within less than a year. My commercial chamber vacuum sealer is one of the best appliances I've ever bought. It's paid for itself over and over and over. And over. 🙂
So if you're curious about commercial vacuum sealers--what makes them "commercial," what makes them better than residential grade, and which ones give you the best bang for your buck--read on. There's a lot to learn!
If you don't want to read the whole article, use the links in the Table of Contents to skip to the section you're interested in:
See related articles:
The Best Commercial Vacuum Sealer At a Glance (Table)
Here are the top three commercial-quality vacuum sealers that you can buy on Amazon. The rating is based on quality, durability, and affordability:
Lightest weight, most affordable, designed to work under upper cabinets.
Heavy duty rotary oil pump will never overheat under normal home use.
Has an accessory port (most chamber vacs don't).
What Does "Commercial" Mean?
"Commercial" means a product is more durable than those made for the consumer market. A commercial setting is more demanding than a residential setting. Items tend to get more use, harder use, and more continuous use. Therefore, commercial grade appliances tend to be more durable and better-built, and consequently more expensive, than appliances made for the consumer market.
Commercial-grade products are often suitable for both commercial use and home use, and are often marketed to home users.
There is yet another grade above commercial, and that is industrial. Industrial grade products are ultra heavy duty, and you'll know them by the thousands of dollars they cost. A home user would rarely have a need for an industrial grade vacuum sealer (like this Sammic model).
Thus, commercial vacuum sealers fall kind of in-between consumer sealers and industrial sealers. You can get an excellent quality commercial vacuum sealer, one that will provide years of service, for less than $1000. All of the sealers reviewed here are in this category.
Here's a quick comparison table of the differences between residential, commercial, and industrial vacuum sealers:
Internal parts mostly plastic
Internal parts metal
Internal parts metal
Pump is not cooled
Pump is air- or oil-cooled
Pump is oil-cooled
Unit will weigh less than 10lbs
Chamber units will weigh upwards of 40lbs;
Unit will weigh upwards of 40lbs
App Price Range: < $200
App Price Range: $180-$2500
App Price Range: > $2500
Why Buy a Commercial Vacuum Sealer?
If you see a vacuum sealer as an essential kitchen appliance, then this becomes an easy question to answer, along the lines of, "why should I buy the best stove I can afford?" or "why should I buy the best refrigerator I can afford?" The simple answer is that you're going to get better, more dependable, more satisfactory use from a commercial grade vacuum sealer than you will from a consumer-grade sealer. Here are some reasons why this is the case:
- More durable
- Longer life
- More powerful vacuum (better for everything, including sous vide and eliminating freezer burn)
- Replace parts and repair problems instead of throw away the machine
- You're likely to have better customer service
- With an average life span of about 2 years (depending on use), consumer-grade sealers will cost the same or more in the long run
- Chamber vacuum bags are cheaper than edge/handheld sealer bags
- Any vacuum sealer less than $2000 will pay for itself in a year in food savings for the average American family.
Do You Need a Commercial Vacuum Sealer for Sous Vide?
You do not need a commercial vacuum sealer for sous vide. In fact, you don't need a vacuum sealer at all--you can use the air displacement method and avoid purchasing a vacuum sealer altogether. But if you're considering buying a vacuum sealer to use with that sous vide circulator you got for Christmas, my recommendation is to go for it. Here's why:
- Vacuum bags are more durable than disposable food storage bags--this means fewer leaks in the water bath
- Vacuum bags suck more air out than the displacement method, so you'll have fewer problems with floating bags and get more even, more consistent results
- You don't have to mess with clipping bags to the side of the container or weighing them down. You can just pop vacuum bags right into the water bath (straight from the freezer, even, which makes dinner prep pretty darn easy!)
- You will use your vacuum sealer for dozens of other things besides your sous vide machine.
I know what you're thinking and it's true--you don't need a commercial sealer for this list. Any vacuum sealer will get the job done. But as we already said, a commercial sealer is worth the extra money if you can afford it.
And if you're interested, check out this article on the best sous vide circulators.
Chamber Sealer Vs. Edge Sealer: Which Is Best?
If you're going to spend the big bucks, it's our opinion that you should get a chamber sealer. With a chamber vac, you have more control over the sealing process, a more powerful vacuum, and an all-around more durable product.
Bonus: You can also seal liquids with it. This is not possible with an edge sealer without a workaround (e.g., freezing the liquid first or not pulling a full vacuum).
You may think you won't have a need to seal liquids, but "liquid" includes all "wet" foods: casseroles and stews, for example, are much easier to seal in a chamber sealer.
A commercial-grade chamber sealer makes freezing leftovers and making several meals at once both easy tasks-- you don't have to wait for the pump to cool down between seals! Commercial-grade chamber sealers are designed for continuous use. With residential-grade edge sealers, you have to allow the pump to cool in between seals. This greatly increases the amount of time it takes to do a bulk sealing job.
The only real drawback to a chamber vac is that the bag size is limited by the chamber size. With edge sealers, you can use rolls of bags and cut a bag as long as you need it.
However, we have not found this to be much of a drawback. The ability to seal liquids far outweighs the limited bag size--which is easy to work around by how you portion out your food.
For more information, check out Why Every Kitchen Needs a Vacuum Sealer.
The Reviews: Best Commercial Vacuum Sealers Under $1000
If you've decided that you want to invest in a commercial grade, heavy-duty chamber vacuum sealer, it's time to start looking at what's available. There are many models to choose from; VacMaster alone offers at least a half dozen choices.
Here we picked our favorites based on usability, durability, customer reviews, many hours of research, and our own experiences with chamber vacs. We've been using the VacMaster VP210 for going on 5 years and haven't had a single problem with it. It's easy to use, easy to keep clean, has fully adjustable vacuum time, it's great for sous vide, super-fast marinading, sealing liquidy leftovers like stews and casseroles, and many other tasks.
Because of our positive experience with this product, we're partial to the VacMaster brand, as are most other people, judging by the number of positive reviews on their products. However, they also just happen to have the most offerings in the commercial category (or at least, the most offerings with good reviews and a good rating on Fakespot.com).
Here are three of my favorite, "if I had it to do over," products. If you can't decide from among these three, you're probably not ready to buy!
VacMaster VP112S Chamber Vacuum Sealer
(See the full VP112S review here.)
Technically the ARY VacMaster VP112S isn't called "commercial grade" in any of VacMaster's marketing literature. And here we are leading with it! But you see, the VP112S has the same internal parts as the VP210, which is considered commercial grade. It's housing and lid aren't quite as heavy-duty as other VacMaster sealers, but this is what makes it lighter and more practical for the home user.
The VP112S is VacMaster's best-selling chamber vac, despite being one of its newer models.
The VP112S is basically a VP210 re-designed for home use. It's smaller, lighter, and designed to fit underneath a cupboard, yet it has all the features of bigger, more expensive chamber vacs, including fully adjustable settings, maintenance free pump, and a marinade function. With its 12-inch sealing bar and max bag size of 12x14 inches, it also has a larger chamber than most other chamber vacs on the market, including our beloved VP210.
It's brilliant. If we ever need to upgrade my VP210, this is the model we'll get.
Two features make the VP112S the best chamber vac for most home kitchens:
- Its light weight (just under 50 lbs)
- Its ability to fully open while underneath a cupboard.
Both features make it far easier to find a home for it on your countertop than more cumbersome chamber vacs. Besides these two very distinguishing characteristics, here are its other great features:
Chamber vacs have adjustable settings, so the controls on them have a learning curve. This chamber vac has adjustable vacuum time, adjustable seal time, and a marinade function, which turns the vacuum on and off intermittently, resulting in a quick marinade (if you own a vacuum sealer of any type and haven't used it to marinade, you're missing out on one of the great features of vacuum sealing).
You'll certainly have to read the user manual and experiment with which settings you like best. But we have found that once working properly, the settings rarely need to be changed. Using the sealer is as easy as closing the lid and pressing a button.
Color: Stainless and black
Size: 16x24x9 in. (14in. high fully open)
Weight: 46 lbs
Motor: 600W (standard US 120V/60Hz outlet)
Vacuum: 23.5" Hg - 29.3" Hg
Chamber Size (WxDxH): 12x11x5 in.
Maximum Bag Width: 12 in.
Maximum Bag Size: 12x14 in.
- 40 assorted chamber bags
- User manual
- 1 year limited manufacturer warranty.
Buy the VacMaster VP112S if you want a top quality chamber vac designed for home use. Highly recommended.
CLICK FOR AMAZON'S BEST PRICE ON THE VACMASTER VP112S VACUUM SEALER:
VacMaster VP 215 Chamber Vacuum Sealer
The ARY VacMaster VP215 is another excellent commercial grade chamber vac. It's one of the few chamber vacs at this price point with an oil-cooled rotary pump, the type you find in heavy-duty industrial grade chamber vacs. The good side of this is that it's a tank that will probably last you the rest of your life. The downside is that the rotary pump is not maintenance-free like the dry piston pumps found in most commercial grade chamber vacs (including the others we review here). If you're good at maintenance or willing to learn (it's not hard), this chamber vac is a great option.
The VP215 operates automatically upon closing the lid (as do other VacMaster sealers). When finished the lid lifts, ready for the next bag. This makes quick work of big sealing projects.
Its vacuum and seal time is fully adjustable. Removable filler trays speed up vacuum time (by decreasing the amount of air that needs to be pumped out of the chamber), and can also be removed to make sure liquids sit on the bottom of a bag before sealing. Like all VacMaster sealers, it is designed for easy use and easy cleaning.
- Rotary oil vacuum pump
- 10.25 in. seal bar, removable for easy cleaning
- Filler boards to decrease vacuum time
- 4mm wide seal
- Automatically begins sealing when you close lid
- Full view polycarbonate lid
- Easy-to-clean stainless housing and chamber
- Brushed stainless steel body
- Control panel – adjustable vacuum level and seal time
- Vacuum gauge
- Mylar pouch capable (2-6 mil thickness).
Once you have the settings where you want them, operation is as easy as closing the lid. This starts the process, and once the bag is vacuumed and sealed, the lid pops open, ready for the next bag.
Color: Stainless and black
Size: 13 in. wide x 19 in. deep x 15 in. high (with lid closed)
Weight: 84 lbs
Motor: 1/4 hp (standard US 120V/60Hz outlet)
Vacuum: Adjustable from 2.95" Hg to 29.53" Hg
Pump Type: Rotary oil
Pump Capacity: 10 cubic meters/hr
Chamber Size (WxDxH): 11.25x14x5 in.
Maximum Bag Width: 10 in.
Maximum Bag Size: 10x14 in.
Cord Length: 120 in.
- Filler plates (2)
- Maintenance kit
- User manual
- 25-6x10 in. vacuum bags
- 25-8x12 in. vacuum bags
- 25-10x14 in. vacuum bags
- Commercial warranty.
The VacMaster VP215 is a superior chamber vac at an excellent price. If you don't mind the weight and maintaining the rotary pump yourself, it's an excellent choice that will provide years of service.
CLICK NOW FOR AMAZON'S BEST PRICE ON THE VACMASTER VP215 VACUUM SEALER:
PolyScience 300 Series Vacuum Chamber Sealer
"Maintenance-free design provides professional-level features at a home cook's price." (from the PolyScience website)
With an accessory port for external sealing, a marinade function, an infusion cycle, and three programmable seal times, the PolyScience 300 Series chamber vac has a lot of features you won't find on other chamber vacs.
PolyScience is a laboratory equipment company probably best known for their immersion circulators, which they made for lab applications long before they made them for sous vide. After sous vide took off in 2012, PolyScience devoted more time to "lab" equipment for kitchen use. The company has a reputation for high quality precision equipment, and this chamber vac is no exception.
With a price tag right around the $1000 mark, this is the most expensive chamber vac we recommend for home use. The technology and quality level is equivalent to VacMaster, so whether you want to spend this kind of money depends mostly on how much you want the extras this chamber vac has to offer (primarily the external port).
- Maintenance free dry piston vacuum pump
- One-button operation
- Three programmable presets for common vacuum operations
- Marinade cycle
- External port for sealing bags and canisters (canisters sold separately)
- Large vacuum chamber for expanded pouch sizes.
As with all chamber vacs, there is a learning curve. And because the 300 Series has so many features, you'll have to figure out what settings work best for sealing, marinating, infusing, and more. Its three programmable settings are great because once know them, you'll be able to do your three most common functions with the push of a button.
Size: 18.5 x 14 x 14.5 in.
Weight: 50.7 lbs
Pump: Maintenance-free dry piston
Power: 120V (standard US outlet)
Chamber Size (LxWxH): 13.8 x 12 x 4.3 in.
Seal Bar Length: 11.5 in.
Maximum Bag Width: 11 in.
Marinade Cycle: Yes
Accessory Port for External Sealing: Yes
Shipping Weight: 60.5 lbs
- 6 1-pint vacuum bags
- 6 1-quart vacuum bags
- 6 1-gallon vacuum bags.
The PolyScience 300 Series chamber vac is your best chamber vac choice if you want extras like a marinade function, an infusion function, an accessory port, and the ability to program your favorite settings.
Don't forget your canister!
CLICK NOW FOR AMAZON'S BEST PRICE ON THE POLYSCIENCE 300 SERIES CHAMBER VAC:
You can find a vacuum sealer to suit your needs in any price range. The most important thing is that you figure out how you're going to use it, and, how much you're going to use it, before you buy. If you put some thought and research into your purchase, you can be happy with whatever you buy for years to come.
Thoughts or questions? Let us know in the comments section below. And thanks for reading!