How to Sharpen a Can Opener?

How to Sharpen a Can Opener

Times have changed, and companies have designed new ways of adding value to their goods. As a result, you find that most food ingredients such as tomatoes come in cans. Luckily, can openers are cheap. With only five dollars, you can purchase a can opener to make your cooking faster. Since it’s a small appliance, cleaning it and storing it is also easy. 

Prolonged use and poor maintenance make the can opener dull. As a result, it becomes less effective, thus making you struggle when opening cans. Luckily, methods on how to sharpen a can opener are not rocket science. You don’t even require professionals to sharpen it for you. It’s a simple DIY activity that you can perform at home faster. Check the methods below. 

How to Sharpen a Can Opener?

Note that, apart from being dull, food particles can clog on the blades and make the opener less effective. So, before deciding on sharpening the opener, you need to clean it first. Don’t underestimate its blades when cleaning it since it can still harm you. 

So, how do you clean the opener? Start by getting hot water and vinegar. If vinegar isn’t available, then hot water and soap are okay. You can’t clean the can opener blades well before first dismantling them. Once you’re through, place the blade in the vinegar and allow it to soak for an hour. Assuming you only have soapy hot water and have no vinegar, you should leave the blade in the soapy water, too, for an hour. 

Get an old toothbrush and gently scrub all the food particles on it. Once through, rinse and dry it before reassembling the opener. If you’re lucky, the blade’s performance should improve. If not, it’s time to sharpen it. Below are two ways to sharpen your blade. They include-

1. Use a Sandpaper

Buy some good quality sandpaper. Since you can’t use the whole package at once, be assured that it will serve you longer. Since you have already washed and dried your blades, you need to run them through your opener. After running it through a few times, check if it’s okay. If it doesn’t improve, then try the option below. 

2. Aluminium foil

Take an aluminum foil and cut a sizable strip. To make the strip thicker, fold it twice. Run the aluminum strips several times through the blades. Check if the blade is okay. If it’s still dull, it’s time to consider buying a new can opener

Sharpening Using a Knife or Scissors Sharpener

Pick the knife, wash it, rinse then dry it. Since you don’t want accidents, disconnect the can opener from power and ensure that your hands are dry. Place the can opener on a flat surface before inserting the knife. Remember, the can body requires you to support it. Press the level after positioning the knife sharpener on your right. Using slow motions, draw the knife five times slowly towards you. Test the sharpness and, if satisfied, wash the knife. 

Signs that Your Can Opener Needs Sharpening

Have you been struggling to open the can using the can opener? The chances are high that your opener is dull. Instead of speculating, here are the signs that the can opener requires sharpening.

If you have been using it for a long and its performance has dramatically reduced, the chances are high that the opener is dull. Again, if you have not been washing it regularly and the blade is clogged with food particles or even rusty, it’s good to sharpen it. Unfortunately, no matter how you sharpen it, there comes a time when the only option is to replace it. 

When and How to Do a Can Opener Blade Replacement?

The blade starts to wear out on the edges. It becomes rusty that you can quickly feel it. If your attempt to sharpen it bears no fruits, then it’s time to replace it. Note that with these marks, the chances of finding metal silvers on your foods are high. 


Do Can Openers Get Dull?

Yes, they do. After buying the opener, you need to clean it after use. But if you leave food particles attached to its blade, they will build up and make the opener dull. 

When Should You Replace the Can gear?

Remember, operating the can openers should be stress-free. That should be the case so long as you maintain it properly. Unfortunately, other than the blades, the gears also get worn out once you fail to clean them. As a result, you will struggle to turn on the knob.

If that happens, clean the gear immediately. An old toothbrush would be good to help you clean well. Also, lubricate the gears using oil spray to help them rotate them well. If the performance of the opener fails to improve, then replacing the gear is a good option. If nothing improves, then replacing the can opener is the only option. 

Why does the can opener withdraw when I try to open the can? 

In most cases, the worn-out bars on the base of the opener are the main culprits. The solution is to get a base replacement. 

Effects Of A Broken Knife Handle?

If the handle is broken, you will have the challenge to pierce the can. Note that the knife will only lift slightly from the gear. The best option is to replace the handle.


The can opener will serve you for a long time so long as you take good care of it. But if you allow food particles to build on the blade, expect frustrations as you try to open the can. Note that food particles affect the performance of the opener and make the blades dull. Rust starts accumulating on the blade, and you risk getting metal particles on the food. Luckily, once the opener becomes dull, you can easily sharpen it. You can either use sandpaper or even a thick aluminum foil. Other than the blade, you should also clean the gears and lubricate them with cooking spray. 

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