The lifespan of your gasket is going to depend on how frequently you use your pressure cooker/canner, what types of food you cook in it, and how it is stored.
If there is steam escaping from between the body of the cooker/canner and the lid you will first want to make sure that the gasket, lid, and body rim are clean and properly installed, if you determine that they are then you can test your gasket.
To test the gasket, take it out of the lid, stretch it slightly and then retry sealing your cooker/canner. If the steam continues to escape then you need to replace your gasket with a new one.
It is a good idea to keep an extra gasket on hand so that if you are in the middle of a large canning session you won't be side tracked by having to go out and track down a new gasket. We carry pressure cooker parts for a large variety of pressure cookers and canners. For help finding the parts you need, contact our customer service at 1-800-251-8824.
How to Store your Pressure Cooker/Canner:To extend the lifespan of your gasket you will need to properly store your pressure cooker/canner.
When you prepare your pressure cooker/canner for storage you will want to clean it well, make sure it is dry before placing it into storage. When you store your cooker/canner do not store it with the lid tightened on as this can cause a vacuum inside of the pot and the lid will not release when you try to open it. Many people will take the gasket out and store it inside of the cooker/canner pot and place the lid on upside down. Do not store your cooker/canner in a place where there is a lot of moisture or high temperature changes.
Keep your gasket clean, dry, and grease free. To install a new gasket, soapy water can make it easier to slip into the pressure cooker/canner lid.