Instant Pot Lid Won’t Close or Seal: 7 Reasons & Solutions

Instant pot plays a massive part in daily kitchen life. However, it becomes very troublesome when the Instant pot lid won’t close. As we use the instant pot most of the time, there is hardly a day instant pot isn’t needed.

When a person can’t close the instant pot lid in the middle of cooking, it turns out to be a nightmare. Using an instant pot makes your cooking and cleaning finish in minutes.

If your instant pot lid is not closing, there are a couple of problems like missing or broken sealing ring, wrong position of the steam release handle, less or excessive water, and more issues.

Therefore, you can also follow some countermeasures to fix why the instant pot lid is not sealing or closing. So, let’s get ahead and learn about the lids error and how to fix this issue with simple measures.

How Does Instant Pot Work?

Honestly, the Instant cooker works just the way its name says, cooking every food instantly. To speed up the cooking process, the Instant Pot slowly heats the pot above the boiling point.

Therefore, the food and water inside start boiling and building steam. After that, the build-up of steam generates a high-pressure environment inside the pot, and it increases to the optimal pressure point.

At that point, the pressure valve switches places from seal to release, and steam gets vented. And at this exact situation, the food cooks at a rapid rate while maintaining taste and texture.

Instant pot lid won't lock

Additionally, the Instant Cooker consists of a few things to operate ideally:

  • Float Valve
  • Steam Release handle
  • Steam Release Valve
  • Steam Sealing valve
  • Steam Seal/Release Button
  • Cooking Modes
  • Keep Warm

These are overall features you can avail of an Instant Pot or Pressure Cooker.

Also Read: When Is It Safe To Open Instant Pot? Beginner’s Guideline

Why is My Instant Pot Lid Won’t Lock? 7 Ways To Fix

If you’re a new instant pot user, you may find that unlocking and locking the instant pot lid is a bit tricky. Therefore, various reasons cause the pot lid not closing problems. Starting with the instant pot sealing ring is misplaced or the pressure release valve is placed upwards, the cause can be a trivial issue too.

Regarding that, you should first diagnose the reasons and then proceed to fix them. So, there are 7 general reasons why the instant cooker lid won’t close. Let’s know them:

1. The Steam Release Handle In the Wrong Position

When I say that the Pressure or Steam Release Valve is not in the correct position, it means that the release handle is in Venting Position.

Well, this is used for sealing or releasing pressure from the instant pot after the meal is ready. Therefore, the Release Handle or Valve should only be used after the meal is done to vent the pressure before opening the lid.

Regarding that, if your Instant Pot’s  Pressure Valve is in Venting Settings, it will make your Instant Pot Lid unable to close and cause issues.


Every time you begin to cook a meal in an Instant Pot, you should ensure to switch the pressure/Steam handle to seal.

That way, you will not face any struggles while closing the Instant Pot lid.

2. The Gasket/Sealing Ring is Missing or Misplaced

Sometimes the Sealing Ring or the Gasket is not placed inside the brand-new Inner pot; instead, it stays inside the box, and you need to place it. On the other hand, most Instant Pot packages come with two sealing rings. In this case, one Sealing ring is placed on the inner pot. And the extra one is inside the package in case you need it in the future.

Regarding that, sometimes the Sealing Ring goes missing because of a fault in manufacturing. Or, we make mistakes and place two gasket rings on the inner pot. And that is why the instant pot lid will not close.


After making a meal in an Instant cooker, it is normal to disassemble the washable parts and clean them. While assembling the Instant pot parts to cook again, you must ensure to place the gasket ring right on top of the inner pot.

Also, make sure the Gasket ring is clean and debris free. Further, double-check to avoid any misplacement of the sealing ring. And with that, there will be no problems like the instant pot lid won’t close for no apparent reason.

3. Broken Or Loose Sealing Ring

Although Sealing or Gasket Rings are heatproof and quite durable, they will get damaged due to foreign causes. Well, it is also a common cause, even if it does not seem. And you will know why right away.

Sometimes Sealing Rings can get broken when the food debris is stuck on it and you still forcefully close the Instant Pot lid. Therefore, when the Sealing Ring gets broken, it can no longer fulfill its purpose; rather, it makes a disturbance while closing the lid.

On the other hand, the stuck debris also makes the Sealing Ring loose making your Instant Pot lid not closing properly.


Although it is quite rare, the sealing ring of the Instant Cooker can get crooked or damaged over time. Therefore, this will make you experience the Instant Cooker lid not closing.

To stop facing this ordeal, simply replace the damaged sealing ring with a spare one. Moreover, you can always buy the gasket ring from a nearby kitchen store or online.

Instant pot lid won't seal

4. Broken or Crooked Pot Lid

A lot of reasons can be responsible for damaging and even breaking the Instant Pot lid. For example, too much food residue stuck on the rim of the Inner Pot, using a bigger size Inner Pot, placing frozen food in the Instant pot, and many more.

You know that every time you forcefully close the Instant Pot lid, it gets damaged and crooked. And, if you keep forcing the lid to close for a long period, it is no wonder that the lid breaks down.

Therefore, the crooked or broken pot lid is unlikely to be usable and close the Instant Pot.


Another rare issue is that the lid of the Instant pot gets crooked due to some kitchen-related incidents.

Repairing the dent on the lid of the Instant pot is an easy task. With just the right tools, you can fix it. Further, you can always replace that if it is quite hard to repair the dent on the lid.

5. Less or Excessive Water Than Required

Instant Cookers, Rice cookers, and Pressure Cookers are required to use water in every cooking recipe.

Well, there are various reasons for doing so. Well, let’s talk about two particular reasons. The first reason is to avoid food getting burnt, and the second one is to create enough steam and pressure to cook food instantly.

However, if the quantity of water is insufficient/excessive inside the Instant pot, its mechanism disables the lid from closing. Quite shocking, right?

Further, this problem also creates other issues like water evaporating too fast, half-cooked food, not enough steam, and many more.


The recipes for Instant Pot are measured precisely so that you don’t come across any troubles during cooking.

Therefore, following the ingredients and the water/liquid amount charts will save you from being unable to close the lid of the Instant pot.

See More: Why Is Instant Pot Hot Enough – What To Do?

6. Food Debris is Stuck at the Bottom of the Inner Pot

Food debris, grease, and other residues always seem to wreak havoc in the kitchen. Therefore, it is no wonder that when you can’t close instant pot lid, the food residue is responsible again.

That’s right, food residue and grease stuck underneath the Inner pot will also cause the instant pot lid not closing issue. When the good and grease are jammed beneath the inner pot, it gets scorched over time, and the build-up keeps on increasing.

At this point, when you place the Inner pot in the Instant Pot, the Inner Pot rises a bit. Therefore, the Inner Pot takes up more space than normal, and you can’t lock your Instant pot lid.


Cleaning the insides of the Instant pot and the bottom of the inner pot regularly will save tons of trouble.

Therefore, cleaning the build-up of food waste beneath the inner pot will let you smoothly close the lid of the Instant pot.

7. There is Double Sealing Ring Placed on The Pot

I have already briefed you about the issue of placing a double-sealing ring. Well, the thing is that there is always a Sealing Ring placed on the rim of the Inner pot of the Instant pot.

However, some of us are new to using Instant Pots and make the mistake of installing Gasket Rings again on top of the already existing Ring. So, the Instant pot ends up having two Sealing Rings on top of each other at the same time.

But the structure of the Instant Pot does not allow the Lid to close when there is a double Gasket Ring on the Inner Pot.

Thus, when you try to close the Lid in this situation, you end up miserably failing.


I remember someone mistakenly installing another sealing ring on top of the previous one after getting a new Instant pot. I hope you don’t make the same silly mistake.

Setting only one sealing ring is perfect for opening and closing the Instant Pot lid without hassle.

Some Frequently Asked Questions [FAQ]

How do I tighten my Instant Pot lid?

When using an instant pot or pressure cooker, it is essential to ensure that the lid is properly secured. To tighten your instant pot lid, please check that sealing rings are in place and the lid is firmly pushed down until it clicks into place. This way, you can tighten your instant pot lid.

How do I make sure my Instant Pot valve is sealed?

To ensure your instant pot valve is adequately sealed, the sealing ring must be installed correctly and in good condition. If it is damaged or missing, please replace it as soon as possible. After installing the sealing ring properly, please test it before cooking.

Can I replace the lid on my Instant Pot?

Yes, you can replace any cooker lid, like the instant pot or pressure cooker. So, you must have the correct replacement lid which is compatible with your particular model. Otherwise, it will not seal properly with your instant pot.

Can you use an Instant Pot if the lid is cracked?

No, a cracked pot or cracked lid is not recommended for cooking. The cooker lid helps build and seal the steam for the best cooking results. But if you use any cracked or damaged lid, the steam may escape and cause the food to cook unevenly or take longer to reach its desired temperature.

Why is my Instant Pot lid loose?

Your instant pot lid must be sealed while cooking. Why is my instant pot lid loose? The first possibility is that your instant pot lid may not be appropriately secured when closing the pot. Another reason is that the rubber gasket is damaged on the pressure cooker lid and may need to be replaced.

Last Words

Honestly, it isn’t very pleasant if your Instant pot lid won’t close while you prepared a lot to make a meal and eat. However, you got nothing to worry about after going through our solutions to fix this issue within a few moments.

Finally, we also explained the most common reasons leading to why your pressure cooker lid won’t close with solutions. So, follow my guidelines and methods to enjoy an instantly cooked meal in your Instant pot.

One Response

  1. Michael July 31, 2023

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