Don’t make this Vitamix mistake!

Blended Vitamix tamperIt can be tempting to not use the lid if you’re just doing a quick touch-up or a minor blend job. If you do, realize that you are entering the danger zone. First, if the switch and knob are not on the variable/lowest setting you could send the contents of the pitcher all over the kitchen. Second, if you happen to be tempted to use the tamper when the lid is off, it’s game over. The length of the tamper and the hole in the lid are designed to allow the tamper to reach very near the blades without hitting them. If the lid is off, there’s nothing to stop the tamper.


If you do, and even if you try to be careful, once the tamper touches the blending mixture, there is quite a bit of suction that can pull it down into the blades (this is how the Vitamix keeps things circulating). The tamper is designed to break before the blender does, so at least you don’t ruin the Vitamix, but the tamper is toast, and whatever you were making is also ruined because it’s full of tiny bits of plastic. I’ve tried to pick them out, but with the Vitamix’s shredding power it’s a lost cause.

I keep this destroyed tamper behind my Vitamix to remind me of the perils of running the machine without the lid.

All that said, this was pure user error. As long as you use the lid there’s no problem. The lid and tamper are a pretty clever design, since the lid lets the tamper get close to the blades without hitting them.*

If it happens to yours, you can easily order a replacement.
Update: There are now three different Vitamix tampers, so make sure you order the right one for your container. If you have the tall/narrow classic 64-oz container that comes with the 5200 and similar models, you want the Classic Tamper. The Classic tamper can be used with the 32 and 48-oz containers because it has a secondary flange. Or you can use the smaller Mini Tamper with the 32 and 48-oz containers. For the short/wide 64-oz G-Series container, the S-Series 40-oz container, and Ascent containers, you want the Low-Profile Tamper.

Also, check out this tamper mishap on TV:

*I’ve heard stories of people who managed to blend their tamper while the lid was on by pushing on it too hard. I’ve never seen that happen first-hand, and I imagine that you’d have to push really hard. So don’t push on the tamper with all your weight. You can push on it pretty hard without any problem though.

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Don’t make this Vitamix mistake! — 42 Comments

  1. Glad I’m not the only one who does this but what happened today was even worse. I was making pesto and forgot to put the lid on the blender, used the tamper and somehow smashed a giant HOLE in the side of my container… pesto all over the walls and shards of plastic everywhere… really wish I would’ve known before hand !

  2. Well, I made the mistake of using my vitamin 5000 without the lid and it broke my tamper .i will be ordering a new one but my daughter did have 3 sips and I had 1 sip before tossing it . It did t dawn on me at first that there will be small pieces of plastic In it.
    Did t realize it till I went to wash the tamper.

    I hope we will be ok. I am worried .
    We did t taste anything but it’s prob very small ground up pieces.

    Now I need to order a new tamper

  3. I too made the mistake of using the tamper without the lid… I’m afraid I bent my Vitamix blade… is that possible? If so, how can I tell?

    • I’m pretty sure that blending the tamper wouldn’t bend the blade. (As long as you’re not also blending rocks!) Vitamix blades are in fact slightly bent (and asymmetrical) by design. Check out this side-view photo of a totally normal Vitamix blade.

  4. At the time I purchased a 32oz container for my 750, it didn’t come with a tamper. The store I purchased it from ordered a classic tamper for me. It has worked just fine. The hole in the lid is small enough to prevent the tamper from going down all the way. I usually store it right in the container so there is no confusion between it and the tamper for my 64oz low profile container.

    Until today. Both containers were off the self and both tampers were on the counter. You can see where this is going.

    Yup, I used the wrong tamper with my 64oz low profile container. The lid was on! That lid has a slightly large hole. It is a testament to the power of the vitamix that I didn’t immediately sense that that there was a problem. But something was obvious when a small amount of stuff sprayed out the near the base of the container. I think that a chunk of shattered tamper moving around in the blades somehow pushed up against the side of the container enough to crack it.

    A new container and the right size of tamper are in my future.

    BTW: the spray was rather impressive, shooting all the way to the opposite wall. Happily, there was just a very small amount that made it through the crack.

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