Some reviewers say the FoodSaver V3840 countertop vacuum food sealer is a versatile sealer that can suit the needs of many consumers. On the other hand, this model gets as many 1-star reviews as 5-star raves from owners. Many are furious over bag waste; rather than a neat quarter-inch trimmed seal, the FoodSaver uses about an inch and a half of plastic to create a seal, eating up plastic. We also found quite a few complaints that it's tricky to get a good seal. The stainless-steel finish and upright design appeal to consumers, who say it takes up minimal counter space and looks sleek enough to have a permanent position on the counter. The FoodSaver V3840 vacuum food sealer features built-in roll storage, a built-in bag cutter, two sealing settings, two vacuum strengths, a marinade mode and a canister mode. Rather than spend $150 on the FoodSaver V3840, consider the much cheaper Seal-a-Meal VS107 Food Sealer (*Est. $55). While this model's reviews aren't much better than those for the FoodSaver model, it costs almost two-thirds less.
We found the best review of the FoodSaver V3840 vacuum food sealer at Cook's Illustrated, where editors put eight vacuum sealers to the test by sealing a variety of foods and checking for signs of failed seals and freezer burn after different time intervals. Amazon.com has more than 100 user reviews for the FoodSaver V3840; owner opinions are particularly valuable when it comes to vacuum sealers, because they can attest to a model's ability to hold up over time through light or heavy use. Viewpoints.com has just under 20 reviews for this model, but feedback here is useful. We also found a number of individual product reviews for the FoodSaver V3840 on KitchenContraptions.com (where editors put it to the test against standard freezer bags), SurvivalSpeak.com and DesertDogJournal.com.
1. Cook's Illustrated Magazine
Editors of Cook's Illustrated magazine include eight vacuum sealers (two handheld and six countertop) in this test, in which they seal chicken breasts, ground coffee, fresh strawberries and a fully cooked Thanksgiving meal in each sealer, checking for signs of freezer burn and failed seals after two weeks, one month and two months. The FoodSaver V3840 Advanced Design is included in this roundup; a few of the models tested have been discontinued.
Review: Vacuum Sealers, Editors of Cook's Illustrated, Aug. 1, 2009
More than 100 owners have weighed in with comments on the FoodSaver V3835 vacuum food sealer (the same model as the V3840) on Amazon.com, where it has an average rating of 3 stars out of 5. The most common complaint is about bag waste; there are as many 1-star reviews as 5-star ratings.
Review: FoodSaver V3835 Vacuum Food Sealer with SmartSeal Technology, Contributors to Amazon.com
About 20 owners contribute to an average rating of 3.95 out of 5 for the FoodSaver V3840 vacuum food sealer. Feedback is similar to that found on Amazon.com; many owners note the stylish stainless-steel finish and compact design, but complain of bag waste.
Review: FoodSaver Vacuum Sealer V3840 Reviews, Contributors to Viewpoints.com
Editors test the FoodSaver V3840 vacuum food sealer against standard freezer bags. They say the FoodSaver V3840 does a good job of warding off freezer burn, finding no signs of freezer burn after one month of freezer storage. The V3840 is loud, they note.
Review: Review: FoodSaver Vacuum Sealer -- Automatic Bag Sealing and Marination, Editors of KitchenContraptions.com, Oct. 17, 2008
Editors of SurvivalSpeak.com offer a detailed review of the FoodSaver V3840 vacuum food sealer, based on limited personal use. The authors note that it seems sturdy and functions well, and that they would expect this model to last a number of years.
Review: Update: Comment Request: What's the Best Vacuum Sealer?, Editors of SurvivalSpeak.com, March 9, 2010
Anonymous reviewer "Desert Dog" uses the FoodSaver V3840 vacuum food sealer to package dry foods for backpacking. He says the canister and marinade modes would be useful in the kitchen and calls the FoodSaver V3840 a "must-have" item.
Review: Gear Review: FoodSaver V3840 Vacuum Sealer, "Desert Dog", Aug. 18, 2009