Not too long ago, harnessing fire was a routine activity fundamental to daily life. When homes used to be heated using fireplaces and stoves, and the main source of illumination comprised of candlelight and lamplight, fire-starters were incredibly vital. In fact, devices resembling lighters have been in use since the 16th century. However, the common consensus is that they were invented in 1823.
These traditional tools for ignition evolved significantly to high-tech gadgets that we use today. The best EDC lighters are now used for so much more other than lighting something. When your tactical flashlight runs out of battery in the middle of your camping trip or the need to provide much-needed warmth in an emergency arises, one of these top-rated fire starters can come to your aid. Skip to the best EDC lighters on Amazon.
What’s the Best EDC Lighter?
Top-tier lighters boast a couple of components that are incorporated to meet specific consumer needs. From expended gas-release mechanisms to waterproof and floating capabilities, there’s one ideal for every situation.
For the price of one, Saberlight offers two sleek, rechargeable lighters for your everyday use. Each unit has a no-frills design, and works singly to kindle. More specifically, these tools each have a simple button on the side for ignition.
The Saberlight Fire Starters utilize plasma wave technology, which can set anything ablaze in an instant. The plasma technology is a great substitute for butane, which has been found to be harmful to human health.
Another perk of this 2-pack unit is that it uses flameless single ARC technology, which consumes less energy than the more complex models. The Saberlight devices take only one hour to charge, and last up to three hours on a single charge.
Sparq is yet another flameless ignition tool by Saberlight. Like the 2-pack model, this one also employs plasma wave technology, creating very hot flames.
True to its name, this gadget has a re-engineered design that increases its compatibility. Traditional plasma beam models were limited by the narrow tesla coil, which meant they couldn’t be used to light flat surfaces. Saberlight has addressed this problem through the new plasma torch technology.
And thanks to its flameless design, this fire starter can be used in any condition; be it water or wind. The fact that it doesn’t use fuel means that it’s also airport safe.
MecArmy combines all the EDC tools you need in one kit. With the different attachments, you can create a penlight-sized flashlight. You can also create a keyring and a single/double box battery capsule. All these tools boast a metal construction consisting of high-grade stainless steel. This means they’re very durable.
Besides, the ignitor and flashlight come in handy when you go for outdoor excursions such as hiking, fishing and camping. For your convenience, the manufacturer has also included a user manual, battery and USB cable.
This is a product from the prominent lifestyle brand –Jolmo Lander. From its name, it’s evident that this fire starter is made of titanium- an ultra-lightweight but durable material.
More specifically, it weighs a measly 27 grams. This coupled with its 5cm height, makes it a compact and portable EDC tool.
Another thing you’ll love about Lander’s ignition device is the lanyard hole created on the cap. This makes it convenient to hook it to your backpack or keychain.
The only drawback is that it does not come ready to use. Unlike the USB rechargeable ignitors, this one uses regular fluid which you have to purchase separately. On the brighter side, you won’t have to press any buttons to get a continuous flame.
For a compact EDC ignition gadget that can double up as a key holder, you’ll want to invest in the OPG3 model. It comes in a convenient size that makes it able to fit in your pocket.
Moreover, this gadget lights up very easily once you strike the flint wheel. This means that you have a ready source of heat and light whenever you need one. The OPG3 is also very versatile. You can use it to light your barbecue grill, camp fire and more.
If you prefer ignition that tools that use fuel, the PPFISH is an excellent option. It has all the features you’d want in a fuel-powered ignitor. For instance, it comes with an 11-ml canister for storing backup fuel.
Also included in this package are 6 flints, 1 wick, and 2 waterproof O-ring. With all these accessories, you’ll be able to use it for a long time as you can replace the parts easily.
Another feature worth noting is that it’s constructed from solid brass. Apart from giving it a distinct, shiny look, the brass material makes it very durable.
Buying guide – EDC lighter
Essential Features to Look For When Buying the best EDC Lighter
Power – The main ignitors are powered by either one of three things: the regular fluid used in ignition devices, batteries or butane.
The advantage of using butane is that it does not contain any odor, unlike the fluid. Plus, it can be used in a soft flame.
On the downside, butane is usually packaged in pressurized canisters, which pose a challenge in terms of portability. If your ignitor were to run out of butane, you would not be able to use it.
For this reason, some people prefer those that use fluid. This fluid comes in more compact packaging allowing you to refill conveniently.
Longevity – Another aspect you’ll want to consider when purchasing your preferred tool for igniting is durability. Butane and arc fire starters are famed for their reliability.
However, the most recommended of the lot are those that use a wick and flint. Wick and flint are accessories that are very easy to replace, which makes the ignition tools an economical and reliable option.
Purpose – Before determining what tool you’ll use to ignite, you need to establish the purpose for getting one. Do you plan to use it outdoors? If so, can it weather any condition that’s thrown its way? The best types are those that will work effectively regardless of the external conditions.
Quality of Build – Apart from defining the purpose, you should also check whether the gadget is made of high-quality materials. This way, even if you drop it accidentally, it won’t break into pieces. Essentially, it should be constructed from materials that can withstand impact such as stainless steel or titanium.
Direct Flame – If you plan to use your fire starter out in the wild where there are storms and downpours, you should look for those that have a direct flame. This torch flame is less susceptible to blowouts than an indirect flame.
Waterproof Capability – This is one of the key features that you should look for when buying an ignition tool. The best ones can continue working even after being submerged in water. Usually, they come fitted with protective sealants, which prevent air and water from coming into contact with the fluid.
While examining the EDC waterproof lighter, you might also want to check whether it has floating capabilities. This way, you can retrieve it with ease in case you drop it in a river or lake.
Ease of Carrying – Naturally, most everyday carry fire starters have portable designs. Still, it’s important to check the overall weight. Some of them come with additional elements to increase their functionality. These extra attachments add to their overall weight, causing them to be slightly bulky.
The type of material used in the ignitor’s construction also contributes to its weight. For instance, stainless steel is a durable material but it also weighs more than other metals such as titanium and aluminum. The ideal fire starter should be durable but also easy to carry.
Ease of Refilling – When the disposable models were first introduced into the market, they were popular because of their affordability. But even though they’re cheap, they harm the environment in more ways that you can think of.
If you care about the environment and are looking to minimize garbage, you should consider the refillable ones. These are more convenient as you can easily refill them instead of carrying around several ignitors to use whenever a need arises.
Hands-free Lighting – One of the disadvantages of using some of the tools used to ignite is that you have to keep your finger on the button to keep the flame burning. Luckily, some manufacturers have taken this into account, and are now making ones that have hands-free working mechanisms. So rather than keeping your fingers busy maintaining the flame, you can engage in other tasks.
Different Kinds of Survival Lighters
Zippo Lighters – These ones are manufactured by the American-based Zippo Manufacturing Company. In the eight decades that their ignition devices have been in the market, they’ve become one of the most preferred options primarily because of their reliability.
Zippo offers to replace your fire starter free of charge. All you have to do is pay for shipping. And though they have a basic design, they’re very beneficial in emergency situations. Looking for a way to keep you warm during the chilly weather? Just ignite your Zippo fire starter. And the best part is, they have a hands-free mechanism to keep the flame lit.
There’s just one disadvantage with these Zippo gadgets, and that is the fact that the flame only goes in an upward direction. This means that if you wanted to light something from an odd angle, you’d have a hard time.
Butane Lighters – Another example of an ignition tool is the type that uses butane. The working mechanism of this tool is quite fascinating.
Given that butane is a highly flammable gas, a tiny spark ignites the narrow stream of gas creating a flame. This spark is produced by compressing piezoelectric crystal or by striking a flint with metal.
A good example of lighters that use butane are those made by Bic brand. These offer several advantages such as easy replacement and being handy for emergency situations. Better yet, they are good at creating long flames. This makes them suitable for when you want to create fire at ground level.
Windproof Survival Lighters – Do you live in an area that is always experiencing strong winds? If you do, you will appreciate the invention of an EDC windproof lighter.
These devices will remain lit even when the winds blow at speeds of 80mph. Most of them are also leak-proof, so you don’t have to worry about the fuel or other kind of fluid leaking.
Plasma Lighters – These ones have a different working mechanism from that of butane models. They actually work on the same principle that causes lightning to occur. This involves passing a high voltage electric current between two nodes.
This action creates a highly charged plasma that produces heat. And while this sounds complex, these devices for igniting are very user-friendly. Just press a button on the casing and a flame is produced instantly. These ignitors are fitted with a battery and electric current, which facilitate the process that results in a flame.
One of the perks of using an EDC core plasma lighter is that it doesn’t require any fuel.
Electric/Arc – These ones are very similar to those that use plasma technology. Electric fire starters are powered using batteries. They can use either disposable batteries or rechargeable ones.
Some of the benefits of these electric-powered models are that they’re wind and splash-proof. On the downside, you need to recharge them every couple of hours. And, if you don’t have access to an electric outlet, then you won’t be able to use them.
EDC lighters are useful tools that offer a lot of utility. Whether you’re an outdoorsy person or not, you’ll find these tools beneficial, especially in emergency situations. That said, there are a few things you should keep in mind when purchasing these ignition gadgets. These include: type of flame, durability, ease of refilling and portability.