Last update on 2023-01-23 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
Best survival lighter
The discovery of how to make and control fire was the most important innovation in human history, which was actually a turning point in the development and survival of humankind.
Just like our ancestors from 440 million years ago relied on fire to protect themselves from predators, as well as a source for warmth, cooking, making tools for hunting and others, fire is still essential for survival today, especially if you happen to be stranded in the wilderness or are spending time camping, hunting, fishing or other outdoor adventures.
Finding a trustworthy survival lighter for your outdoor activities may indeed be essential to your continued safety while you are in the wild.
The following are some of the key characteristics to look for in a great survival lighter in 2023.
Features to look for when choosing the best survival lighter
What you will be using it for
A survival lighter’s most obvious application is for quick fire starting. However, you must also take into account a few more variables, such as the weather, which might make your assignment more difficult.
Choose a survival lighter that is an excellent choice and can be used to effectively create a fire in the many conditions where you want to use it.
Since having a properly working and efficient lighter can be something that can literally save your life, you should make sure that you opt for one which is durable enough to withstand carrying, being dropped, or getting wet.
A tough and well-built survival lighter should be able to withstand falls and hard impacts and should work in all kinds of harsh conditions.
When purchasing a survival lighter, you need also take other things into consideration, such as the lighter’s capacity to endure water, snow, freezing temperatures, rain, or flooding.
No matter the climate or surroundings, the lighter ought to function each time you turn on the switch.
So, pick a lighter which will work in the expected conditions of where you will be going.
The direct flame
Having a lighter which can produce a torch-like direct flame is essential if you are going to be using it in extreme conditions. A direct flame makes lighting up a fire easy and quick, even in strong wind and heavy rainfall.
The primary drawback of matches is that they cannot be reused after they have been lit and that they will not work if they become wet.
When trying to start a fire in the outdoors, a waterproof survival lighter may make the effort considerably simpler.
Some of the finest lighters are capable of lighting up even after having been submerged in water completely.
Also, water-resistant lighters will not rust even when they get wet or are exposed to the air.
It makes sense that you choose a lighter which is compact and lightweight if you are planning on carrying it with you on your outdoor adventures.
There are excellent survival lighters that can easily fit in your pocket, on your belt, or in your backpack.
The best option for choosing a lighter for your survival bag is to choose one which is robust but still lightweight and relatively small in size.
If you are heading to the mountains or somewhere where it is very windy, then choosing a lighter which is wind resistant is crucial.
Make sure you pick a survival lighter which will allow you to light up a fire in the conditions expected on your adventures and outdoor trips.
Refillability and reusability
The ability to refill your survival lighter is something you should consider when buying a lighter. Being able to reuse it even after its fuel runs out will make it a wiser long-term investment.
One hand lighting
Some great lighters can start a flame while just using one hand. When your other hand is unavailable or the weather is harsher, this capability is crucial. Therefore, selecting a nice lighter with hands-free operation is an important element to consider as well.
The type of survival lighter and the fuel source
There are different main types of survival lighters being offered on the market. Each of the different fuel types has its pros and cons. The different fuel type also matters if you want to use the lighter for easy refill purposes.
Lighters that use lighter fluid
These rely on lighter fluid, which can easily be found and purchased in any grocery or convenience store. Lighters of this type are easy and inexpensive to refill, but most of them need to be refueled more often than other types, and also, very few of these lighters are windproof.
Butane is usually used for windproof lighters. Butane is also easy to find and is not particularly expensive.
Butane lighters are usually very efficient and among the top options for starting a fire on the ground because they can produce longer flames.
They are portable, and even when out of Butane, these lighters can create a spark, which can be used to light a fire from small leaves and twigs.
These do not use combustible fuel and rely on battery power. Many of them rely on replaceable batteries, but some can be plugged in and recharged.
These are splash-proof and windproof, but they do need to be recharged, so you will need to have access to a solar panel, charger, power bank, or another power source for prolonged use.
These survival lighters run on batteries, and many of them can be recharged. A plasma lighter has an extinguishable flame and is usually a more efficient option to use in windy or moist environments.
The finest survival lighters for 2023
Here is a list of the top survival lighters of all types and for all types of conditions that you can find on the market in 2023.
The Zippo lighter for outdoors is one of the most recognizable of all and one of the most trusted lighters not only in the USA but around the world too.
It is designed to be reliable and suitable for use when outdoors safely and with minimum hassle. It is windproof and lights up without the need to use both hands easily in just about any condition.
The Zippo lighter features an all-metal durable construction and produces that distinctive Zippo click that we have all heard.
Thanks to its flat bottom, you can leave it on the ground or on another surface with the flame lit.
It is a sturdy and refillable lighter, so with the proper care, it can last you for a lifetime.
It is made in the USA and available in a wide variety of designs, color options, and engravings.
The Zippo outdoor lighter is 0.5 x 1.5 x 2.2 inches in size and weighs 1.4-oz.
It is fueled with lighter fluid and uses a wick and a flint wheel to produce a flame whenever you need it.
This is a durable, impact-resistant, wind-proof, and reusable survival lighter that comes with a lifetime warranty.
This Emergency Fire Starter kit will allow you to start a fire with minimal effort, even when there is strong wind or heavy rain outdoors.
The Phone Skope PYRO Putty Fire Starter is sturdy, waterproof, and weather-resistant.
It will work in extreme weather, including in temperatures from -20 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit.
This patent-pending fire starting kit uses a fuel-free, dual plasma arch technology which will allow you to start a fire in the most extreme weather conditions without fail.
This electric lighter is a must-have item for any survival pack and can be recharged easily, with each charge being sufficient for up to 300 light-ups.
The Fire Starter plasma lighter is 2.5 x 2.8 x 5.8 inches in size, requires no fuel, works in extreme environments, including temperatures as low as -20 degrees Fahrenheit, and is a windproof waterproof lighter. It uses arc plasma for lighting up to 300 fires per charge and is among the most highly preferred survival lighters, known for its reliability and durability among outdoor adventurers and any similar challenging experience.
The Exotac FireSleeve Waterproof Lighter Case is not a lighter itself but a sleeve that will keep any of your disposable lighters safe and working even when dipped in water.
It will fit any standard lighter which you can purchase from a store or gas station and will keep it safe in extreme and difficult environments and events.
This FireSleeve floats in water, so you won’t lose it if it accidentally falls in a pond or river. With the help of its push-button operation feature, the sleeve will also keep the gas button of the disposable lighters pressed down for you so that you can start a fire when needed with minimal effort.
This is an impact-resistant, floating and water-resistant survival lighter sleeve which you can use for years, and only have to replace the inexpensive lighter in it periodically. Its size is 1.3 x 0.9 x 4 inches, and is a wonderful addition to any camping, hiking, or survival kit.
The Zippo Emergency Fire Kit is a unique survival fire-starting tool that doesn’t use any of the common types of fuel that other lighters use.
It comes with 5 light, paraffin wax coated spark tinder sticks made of cotton, which are water-resistant, durable and each can burn for up to 5 minutes.
The kit includes the 5 spark tinder sticks and a Zippo flint spark wheel, all packed in a sealed, water-resistant pack.
This emergency kit is impact-resistant, water-resistant, and the wax tinder sticks can be purchased separately so it can be reused over and over again.
The spark wheel is capable of producing up to 1,700 sparks in any type of weather.
The lighter kit is made of impact-resistant and water-resistant ABS plastic and has a textured grip, which means that you can start a fire even when it is pouring outside.
It also has a lanyard hole for a wrist lanyard which makes it even more portable and easy to access when needed during an outdoor adventure.
The size of the Zippo Emergency Fire Starter Kit is 1.2 x 1.2 x 4 inches, and it is one of the finest lighters for survival and for lighting emergency fires you can find on the market in 2023.
The Exotac Titan Light is a waterproof, rugged and refillable lighter that uses inexpensive and easy to find lighter fuel, like the one used for Zippo lighters.
Thanks to the O-ring seal, the liquid fuel will remain in the lighter for as long as you need it, without any leaks, leaving you hanging in the middle of nowhere out in the wilderness. Also, with the help of the strong seal, the container is also waterproof to up to 1 meter of water.
The container of this reusable and refillable survival lighter is made of aircraft-grade aluminum, and it comes in four different cool color options.
The rugged lighter has an efficient high spark wheel and flints which is easy and inexpensive to replace. Due to its strong open flame, you can start a fire easily using a tinder bundle, leaves, twigs, or other flammable materials.
Thanks to the trademark quick thread cap and the O-ring of this lighter, you can open it easily and quickly despite the strong seal, in order to get access to a flame as soon as you need it.
This flameless survival lighter is IP56 waterproof via its closely sealed metal-ring cover.
It is a dual arc lighter that will help you light a fire no matter what the weather is like and where you are.
It is wind-proof too, and its integrated lithium-ion battery is rechargeable via USB.
The materials used for marking this sturdy and reliable lighter include premium quality ABS and zinc alloy.
It comes with a thick and convenient lanyard and is available in various color options.
The size of this water-resistant and wind-proof lighter is 2.7 x 1.9 x 0.7 inches, and it weighs 1.76 ounces.
The stormproof lighter requires no fuel to work, but it does need to be recharged every couple of weeks.
It has a cool design and is definitely an item you should add to your hiking, camping, hunting, or survival gear.
This butane lighter may be designed and made to be a cigar lighter, but the Vertigo by Lotus Cyclone Triple Torch Cigar lighter is actually a pretty good and useful tool to have in your survival kit.
It is inexpensive and very reliable and is capable of lighting up a torch lighter flame that is resistant to strong droughts, via its dual-action, quartz-powered ignition system.
The torch lighter uses butane fuel, and it has a clear butane reservoir so you can keep an eye on the fuel tank level at all times, and make sure that its fuel levels are sufficient and that it is ready for use.
The butane torch lighter is a simple and yet rugged lighter that is suitable not only for cigar smokers but for those of you who need a lighter which can be used outdoors during a heavy storm or in other harsh weather and in any other survival situation.
It is 4.6 x 3.3 x 1.2 inches in size, and weighs only 1.76 ounces, and is one of the best butane torch lighters for camping, hiking and survival needs.
The MecArmy X7S is a multifunctional survival tool that can be used as a lighter in extreme conditions, as well as an emergency, LED flashlight, or as a waterproof storage capsule when you are outdoors in the rain or in another wet survival situation.
This flashlight, emergency lighter, and capsule combination are easily recharged via USB cable connected to any available USB port. The LED flashlight can emit light of up to 130 lumens, and the body of this versatile survival lighter is made of premium grade 304 stainless steel, which is precision machined.
The gas lighter is refillable, and the flashlight can be recharged in just 1 hour to provide up to 6 hours of light at a distance of up to 60 meters.
It can stand flat on its bottom and be used as a candle or a flashlight with your hands-free in emergency situations.
You can use it in 8 EDC different combinations, depending on your preferences, and customize it into a mini key ring or pocket-sized lighter, a flashlight, a battery capsule, a pillbox, and other uses.
In its longest combo, this multifunctional tool is 0.57 x 4/72 inches in size and weighs 1.975 ounces.
The stainless steel capsule can be used in mini and double sizes and is IPX8 water-resistant, so you can keep your medication or other sensitive belongings safe and dry no matter where you happen to be.
So, if you are looking for a space-saving, multifunctional lighter, flashlight, and waterproof capsule for your outdoor adventures and survival situations, then this one by MecArmy is among the best options for survival lighters you can find in 2023.
The Maratac Peanut XL lighter is one of the most durable survival lighters you can find in 2023.
It is compact in size, and yet the Peanut is designed to provide numerous advantages, even over the Zippo outdoor lighters. The Maratac Peanut lighter can be sealed so well that none of its lighter fluid will evaporate while you are on an outdoor adventure. This makes it one of the fuel-based survival lighters with the longest shelf life.
It is made of heavy-duty metal, which ensures its durability, and will help it withstand all kinds of drops and impacts. The metal capsule not only prevents fuel evaporation but is waterproof, so you can use it for storing other items that you need to keep dry and safe too.
It has a flat base and can be used as a candle, hands-free. It can produce a flame and burn continuously for up to 15 minutes per refill.
The flame is produced via a wick, flint and wheel, the same as those used for the Zippo lighters.
Considered to be one of the best survival lighters in the world, the Peanut can even work with flints from BIC lighters or other similar disposable lighters.
The sturdy O-ring, which provides a reliable seal for the fuel, is also replaceable.
Apart from working with the standard Zippo lighter fuel, the Peanut can also work with other types of fuel, including diesel fuel, cologne, spirits, and scavenged fuel, in case you are in extreme circumstances without the suitable fuel to get it going.
This one is XL in size, but you can buy the Maratac Peanut in a variety of size options. The dimensions of this one are 2.75 x 0.75 inches, and it weighs 3 ounces. This lighter comes with a lanyard hole for easy portability too.
This simple and yet highly efficient survival lighter will never need to be refueled or charged.
The WakeyPQ Sailors Windproof Rope Lighter can be used in any outdoor event and situation for starting a fire.
It comes with two ropes so that you can use the lighter for a long time, and for many occasions.
This nifty survival lighter is windproof, and will not be affected by the lowered level of oxygen even at the highest altitudes.
It has a built-in flint wheel ignition which can be used to create sparks. The sparks will then be caught by the cotton rope and thus start a flame.
You can use this light, portable, and easy to maintain lighter to start a fire from any flammable object. You can add a tad of kerosene to the rope to start a more prominent flame when needed.
The ember, which is generated from the spark, is wind-proof and can be extinguished by simply retracting the cord in the tube, and putting the lid on, as an added safety feature.
It is one of the safest and easiest to carry survival lighters, which makes it suitable for survival kits, camping, or any other outdoor adventures or survival scenarios.
Its size is 17.5 x 0.2 inches (with the rope), and it weighs 2.4 ounces. This is one of the few lighters that doesn’t need to be refueled and is a windproof lighter with a very long shelf life.
The Tough Tesla Lighter 2.0 is among the most versatile survival lighters you can find.
It uses a top-facing dual arc plasma to start a fire with a single press of its ignition button. It is wind-proof and waterproof via its flameless technology.
Apart from being a fire starting tool for survival and emergencies, this affordable survival tool, also has a built-in flashlight with 3 settings and an emergency whistle.
The electric lighter is rechargeable via USB and comes with a para-tinder lanyard for easy and safe portability and access during an outdoor adventure.
You can light a flame while holding this nifty lighter upside down without burning your fingers. It weighs a mere 3.52 ounces.
It relies on rechargeable li-ion integrated batteries and can light up to 300 times per charge.
The Tough Tesla Plasma Lighter is a stormproof lighter that is sold with a 6-month money-back guarantee and a 3-year warranty.