View Full Version : Silicone tea infusers

27 Jun 2016, 19:52
Has anyone used these before and could you testify as to how long they last?

I'm looking to replace my older infuser, which is now several years old and beginning to tarnish. I'm just not sure if I want to get another steel one, or if I want to pay the extra few dollars for a cute, colorful, silicone one. If they last quite awhile, I wouldn't mind splurging a bit on the novelty silicone one I'm eyeing.

28 Jun 2016, 01:44
I have a manatee that I've been using for about a year and a half....but I don't normally make a single cup, so it's intermittent use.

30 Jun 2016, 17:48

I am so very tempted...

30 Jun 2016, 22:31
Oh! Cute!

Be aware that if you use any really small sized crushed bots , powders, etc, you may experience leakage. Regular loose leaf tea and dried herbs are fine, but something like powdered ginger is not (if that matters). I collect tea accoutrements, so....yeah. My go_to strainer is either an unbleached, organic cotton muslin bag (which can be washed and reused and generally come in pack of 3-4 or the reasons strainer, which is good for a whole pot of tea.

01 Jul 2016, 22:22
I didn't know you could re-use muslin bags (although to be very honest I never looked into them beyond knowing they existed).

I spent about 20 minutes reading reviews on those little sharks and there are some design flaws I just can't get around for the sake of good tea. Something about having half the tail actually sitting outside of the water doesn't sound very efficient to me. Not to mention the very common complaint of leaf leaks through the holes. I ended up getting a more "solid" one.


02 Jul 2016, 01:58
Yup, I hve two of those strainers--one at work and one at home; I use generally to make a whole pot at a time.

02 Jul 2016, 10:33
Yup, I hve two of those strainers--one at work and one at home; I use generally to make a whole pot at a time.

And they've lasted awhile and don't generally tarnish? My old little mesh ball tarnished like nobody's business and I really wanted to avoid getting another cheapie one like that.

02 Jul 2016, 12:32
Mine haven't...I got thme from teavana

02 Jul 2016, 19:25
Hmm I got a different brand, but that's really good to know. I hear the small mesh wired ones, no matter what brand, tend to tarnish pretty badly. I'm hoping for better luck with this one.

Oh tea, thou art a harsh mistress.

02 Jul 2016, 20:35
Stainless mesh balls don't tarnish but they do stain. They can be cleaned with vinegar or lemon juice to remove the stains from the tannin.

03 Jul 2016, 08:18
Hmm I'll have to try that.

03 Jul 2016, 09:42
Stainless Steel does corrode. (http://www.bssa.org.uk/faq.php?id=9)..particularly in the presence of chlorine ions (so salt or bleach), and high moisture or low oxygen environments.

I have a set of WWII stainless Steel USN utensils, and the knives have some pitting damage

03 Jul 2016, 13:46
I believe I said it didn't tarnish. There are different alloys of stainless. the 300 series allows are mostly unaffected by salt but concentrated liquid chlorine can etch and pit it. the 400 series stainless that is used for knives and surgical scalpels will corrode much more easily as it has carbon to make it hard enough for its uses. The 200 series stainless is not used much anymore because it was very soft in its annealed form but work hardened so quickly that it would become brittle and crack.
Some stainless alloys will pit and be etched by chlorine (that includes salt water or salt). The pitting is erosion of the alloy and shows no tarnish discoloration in the process.
I have never used chlorine or salt in my tea but if you do then perhaps stainless is not the product to use unless you rinse it very well after each use.
There is the possibility that if you are not on a well for your water there may be enough chlorine added to your water that if left in cool water it could pit the stainless. In hot water the chlorine evaporates into the air and won't harm the tea ball.
Still, cleaning it with vinegar or lemon juice will keep it bright.

03 Jul 2016, 14:01
I have a few tea infusers. Two of them are stainless steel and one is silicone. I find the silicone one sturdy, but I also find that it makes my tea taste kind of plasticy and I don't really like it. I find I use it the least out of all the ones I have.

My steel ones don't seem to corrode. We have really, really hard water here, but they are still fairly shiny. I don't know how they stay this way, though.

04 Jul 2016, 05:17
I believe I said it didn't tarnish.

And I didn't say otherwise, though both are oxidative processes. And yes,, depending on your water source, water can have a quite high total dissolved solids content, which includes salts (and are present in almost all natural water sources).

Here, water is provided by an aquifer with a high chloride conted due to two plumes under either end of the aquifer. It also has a noticible sulfur content, and (while not over the TDS regulations) is on the higher end of total dissolved solids for tap water. Oxidative damage is quite common to Cheap $h!t, of all sorts, here...a problem we reallt didn't have where we lived before.