Butane lighters are a viable alternative to traditional lighters, because the flame burns clean and does not leave a "gas" taste. Butane lighters are especially useful for cigar smokers, as they are able to create an even burn by toasting the end prior to smoking. When a butane lighter does not fill, it isn't necessarily ready for the scrap heap. Many can be repaired with a simple fix and a couple of tools.
Drain the butane reservoir. Prior to servicing a butane lighter, all fuel should be dispelled from the lighter for safety reasons. Turn the lighter upside down and locate the valve stem; this is where the lighter is refilled. Press an eyeglass screwdriver against the valve stem, point the butane lighter away from you and bleed the existing fuel into the air. You will not be able to capture the fuel, because it dissipates as it mixes with the air.
Remove the valve by unfastening the flame adjustment screw with an eyeglass screwdriver. Turn the flame adjustment screw counterclockwise until it becomes unfastened from the lighter, and allow the valve to drop out of the lighter or unscrew it from the casing. On some butane lighters, there will be an additional case screw; remove it as well.
Replace the faulty butane valve with a new one, and then reassemble the lighter by replacing the valve flame adjuster and (if necessary) the casing screw. Clean out the burner with a can of compressed air to remove any debris. Refuel the butane lighter with a canister of butane gas. Wait for 45 seconds to a minute and then light the lighter.
- Do not light another lighter or inhale the butane as you bleed the lighter to repair it.
- Perform repairs in a well-ventilated area.