(IntegrityMag.com) – Fire is one of the most important aspects of survival. We need it to stay warm, cook and sometimes protect ourselves. There are many ways to start a fire: rubbing sticks together, with a water bottle or using a lighter are some examples. However, not all lighters are created equal.
A well-known name in the lighter industry, Bic lighters are cheap and easy to stock up on. While these lighters are technically refillable, Bic themselves designed them to be disposable, hence the reason to stock up on them. You may think that because these lighters are designed to be thrown away that they’re unreliable. However, you’d be wrong to assume this as Bics have shown great dependability throughout the years.
While the Bic is reliable and well-built, they do have their downsides. A couple things to consider when prepping for survival is that they’re neither waterproof nor windproof. There is also the issue of lighting in cold temperatures, which is often when you need fire the most. High elevations can be a struggle for these pocket lighters as well; however, they do have the advantage of being able to shoot a flame downward about a half-inch. Now, this may not seem like that big of a deal, but it can make a world of difference when trying to light a fire.
A Zippo is designed to outlast you and whoever it might go to after you. These lighters can easily be refilled and even if the wick or flint go bad, can be replaced as well.
Zippos have a problem at high elevations, struggling at 1,000 feet above sea level. Despite this downside, the Zippo flame will remain burning until you close the lid. They are virtually windproof, and it takes some serious effort to blow out the flame. Unfortunately, Zippo lighters are not waterproof and need time to dry out before they’ll work again. When prepping for survival it may be wise to store them inside a plastic bag to ensure it stays dry in wet weather.
These lighters can also be refilled with just about any type of volatile fluid, giving Zippo an edge over other lighters. While you can get several cheaper lighters for the price of one Zippo, it will outlast all of those.
Zippo and Bic are classic, household names; however, in a survival situation, it’s likely that you would take any lighter that you could. Quality may beat quantity any day of the week but, when prepping to survive you can’t be picky when it’s your life on the line. It’s at that time that a lighter is a lighter, and if it will save your life that’s all that matters.
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