How Long Do BICs And Zippos Last? (Answered Here!)

The ability to create and control fire is one of the reasons the human race has evolved as effectively as it did! Fire allows us to keep warm, cook our food, dry off, and even scare away dangerous predators! Regardless of if you’re just a hobby survivalist or a die-hard doomsday prepper, you will want to know the general life span of Bic Lighters vs. Zippos! Do you like the cheaper, more widely available BIC lighter, or do you splurge and go after the better quality Zippo lighter? Lighters are as important as any other tool that you might use when you’re camping!

Do BIC Lighters Last Longer Than Zippo Lighters?

BIC lighters can last upwards of 1,000 standard regular “lights”. Regular lights mean you are not holding the flame for an extended period of time, but you’re just using it as it was meant to be used. A Zippo, even in best-case scenarios will only last around 200 regular lights, even if stored and used properly! The reason Zippos use fuel so much faster is that they are more prone to evaporation. A Bic lighter does not evaporate nearly as fast as a Zippo does so it will last for a much longer time!

Now that you know the short answer, it’s time to dive a little bit deeper into this situation. Is a Bic lighter better than a Zippo lighter just because it lasts longer? Well, there’s a little more to it than that, we know! We speak from personal experience. So let’s really dig deep and find out everything that might cause Zippos to die faster than a Bic.

The BIC Lighter

The BIC lighter is a simple, plastic, mass-produced, personal lighter. They are widely available and are very cheap to buy. You can usually find them sold in packs. BICs are not refillable, so if the BIC lighter does run out, that’s it you will have to throw away the casing that’s left over and get a new one. One of the main issues with this is waste. One person using one BIC lighter and throwing it away isn’t a big deal, but let’s consider that BICs are probably the best-selling lighter in history, so many people will use them, and millions will be thrown out. The individual parts on the lighter, flint, striker, etc. are also not meant to be replaced, so if they break, you are completely out of luck! However, they can come with some cool designs and decorations wrapped around the lighter to make it stand out!

BIC lighters are great to have around but they have their setbacks, they can be tough to light as sometimes the wheel can get stuck, they’re very susceptible to wind, and you have to hold down the trigger to keep the flame lit so your thumb will get hot quite fast! For these reasons, it’s best to keep the time the lighter is active to a minimum. Otherwise, you may easily end up hurting yourself if you are not paying attention.

The Zippo Lighter

Zippo lighters are cemented as one of the top competitors to BIC lighters and they are incredibly popular. Zippo lighters often come decorated with different stickers and colors so they are quite customizable. Even though a Zippo lighter will run out significantly faster than a BIC lighter, it does come with distinct benefits!

The main benefit of the Zippo lighter is that it’s very easy to fill. You can take any lighter fluid and squirt it in the Zippo whenever you feel like it might be a little low. It is also repairable as the pieces can be taken out and replaced! When you light a Zippo lighter, you also don’t need to actively hold anything down to keep the flame going. This means you can light the Zippo and keep your hand a fairly safe distance away from the flame by holding the bottom of the lighter. On top of this, the flame is also usually better quality than a BIC and the Zippo lighter is much more resilient to weather than a BIC.

Make A Zippo Last Longer

Want to make a Zippo last as long as possible? Here are a few awesome tips you can use:

  • Put the lighter as soon as you’re done using it.
  • Keep the lid closed to save on evaporation.
  • Store your Zippo in a sealed plastic bag to stop fuel from evaporating.

You will also want to store your chosen lighter fluid near the Zippo just in case it runs out right when you need it, plus it just makes sense!

Our Final Thoughts

What would we choose between a BIC and a Zippo? We like to buy both lighters! We always have a bulk pack of BICs ready and waiting in our to-go bag just in case SHTF, cause you never know when you might need to bug out fast! However, we also enjoy the convenience and luxury of a Zippo, so we generally use that as a day-to-day lighter. Zippos are also much better quality and more highly sought after then BICs so it will be a bit trendier to use a Zippo when you’re just hanging out with friends. You can also do some fun flips and tricks with a Zippo that you can’t do with BIC like twirling it around your fingers!

How Long Do BICs Last?

They last for roughly 1,000 "regular lights". Since they are sealed, and not prone to evaporation a BIC lighter could last years!

How Long Do Zippos Last?

Around 200-300 "regular lights". Zippos will have a much shorter life span depending on how they are stored due to the effects of evaporation!