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How to dispose of lighters

Updated February 21, 2017

Most cigarette lighters contain a chamber filled with butane gas that is ignited by a spark created by rolling the lighter wheel over a piece of flint, or sometimes by an electric mechanism. Some lighters are refillable, others are not refillable and must be disposed of when empty. The best, and safest way, to dispose of a used lighter depends on whether it still contains any gas or not.

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  1. Dispose of an empty cigarette lighter in your regular dustbin. If the fuel tank of the lighter is empty, it is incapable of starting a fire.

  2. Dispose of full or partially full lighters at your local hazardous waste department. You can search your phone book or the Internet to find the phone number and address for your waste management department. These facilities are equipped to take in disposables that are flammable or dangerous.

  3. Drain a lighter before throwing it away. To do this safely, hold down the fuel-release button outdoors to drain the butane from a disposable lighter before safely throwing it in the trash.

  4. Warning

    Lighters should only be handled by adults or under adult supervision.

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Things You'll Need

  • Trash bag

About the Author

Jonathan Shaffer has been a freelance writer and blogger since 1999. He has written concert reviews for prominent music blogs and magazines, including "Connections Magazine" in Orlando, Fla. Shaffer holds an Associate of Science in the recording arts from Full Sail University and is working on a Bachelor of Business from Valencia College.

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