Care and Feeding of Butane Lighters
June 20, 2006 8:34 AM Subscribe
I've bought several butane "torch-style" lighters, but they all seem to fail after a month or two -- is it the lighters, or is it my method?
posted by nonliteral to Home & Garden (16 answers total)
I've tried the $15 - $20 lighters, and the $40 - $60 lighters (thinking that maybe the cheaper ones were junk), but invariably I get to the state that despite refilling, they'll just sputter and fail to light for more than a second or two, despite releasing an audible amount of fuel, and having a visible spark.
I've tried "emptying the air" out of them by holding them upside down and depressing the fill nozzle with a small screwdriver until they're emtpy and then refilling them. This sometimes helps for a few days, but seldom makes them work as they did for the first few weeks.
On a similar note, I'm not sure if my filling technique is bad or not; it seems like there is always quite a bit of (cold and uncomfortable) gas leakage when I fill them. Typically I wiggle the nozzle around until I've gotten a noticable "cold" feeling in the storage tank area of the lighter.
Lately, I've bought a couple of "big" 6 oz cans of butane which come with a small collection of adapters for (apparently) a tighter fit on the lighter when filling, but none of them ever seem to properly fit any of my lighters.
I don't really do anything extreme with the lighters, such as trying to use them as culinary torches; I'm just often outside in the wind, and I've found that the torch lighters make a much more convenient cigarette lighter when there's a breeze.
(Avid non-smokers; thanks for sparing me a smoking lecture -- this question is on lighters, not whether I should be smoking)