refill a Bic Lighter from the top

How to Refill a Bic Lighter From the Top (GUIDE)

​An essential item to have in your prepping gear is a survival lighter, and a fairly cheap option is a Bic​. 

A common method used ​to refill a Bic lighter is by turning it upside down and refilling it from the bottom. I find the push pin sticking out too unpleasant and I am worried about the safety of removing the ball bearing.

In this article, I will share with you how to refill a Bic lighter from the top instead of refilling it from the bottom.

Refilling ​a Bic Lighter

The company may say that it is not possible to ​refill a Bic lighter, however, with the correct tools and a bit of work, there are ways to circumvent that statement.

All you need is a tack to push the ball bearing in, then press the nozzle of the butane on the hole. Once refilled, just cover the hole with the tack to make sure nothing spills.

Here’s what you need to be wary of though: removing the ball bearing at the bottom destroys the seal that keeps the fluid from spilling out. Once the ball bearing is gone, the base would be left open. This means that there’s a chance that the flammable fluid kept in it might spill.

This is why Bic lighters are generally recommended to be refilled from the top.

Related Article: Can I Use Kerosene in My Zippo

Materials Needed

To refill your Bic lighter, you will need the following materials:

  • An empty Bic lighter
  • A can of butane
  • A flat screwdriver for prying the parts loose
  • Flint (this is optional)
  • A piece of wire or paper clip
  • A tray (this is also optional)

​How to Refill a Bic Lighter From the Top

Once you have your materials ready you can start by following these steps:

  1. Safety is always a priority. Make sure that your Bic lighter is empty by flicking the spark wheel. If it lights up it means there is still fluid inside.
  2. Continue flicking the spark wheel until there is no more flame.
  3. Set the tray on a table. I use a tray to keep the small parts of the lighter together but this is optional.
  4. Use the screwdriver to pry the hood loose. This is the metal that keeps the flame steady. Set the hood on the tray.
  5. Position the lighter top away from you then pry the child safety guard loose with the screwdriver. This is the clamp covering your spark wheel and could pop out like a cork so you would want to keep it from hitting you.
  6. Carefully remove the spark wheel, you do not want to break the hinges that keep it attached to the lighter. The spark wheel is the metal roller you flick to ignite the lighter flame.
  7. Remove the flint and the flint spring.
  8. Turn the flame adjuster counter-clockwise eight to ten times.
  9. Insert the wire under the fork to keep it open. The fork controls the release of gas coming from the valve. (If you used a paper clip, stretch one end the clip and insert this under the fork.)
  10. Insert the nozzle of the butane can on the open fork and press to refill the lighter with butane gas.
  11. Once refilled, pull the wire out to close the fork.
  12. Turn the flame adjuster again, but this time move it clockwise eight to ten times.
  13. Insert back the flint spring and the flint. The flint supplies the spark in the lighter. Once the flint wears out, the lighter will not light up even if you refill it with butane gas. Normally, the flint wears out before the fluid so you might want to consider replacing the flint if you refill the fluid.
  14. Put the spark wheel back in place. There is no need to put the child safety guard back
  15. Put the hood back on.
  16. Flick your lighter light it up and voila, your dead Bic lighter is alive again.

Following these easy steps would take less than two minutes before you have a working Bic Lighter again.


Some people would probably tell you that it is a lot easier to just buy a new disposable lighter. That may be true, but in the course of time, the total cost could still add up to be more expensive and you can save the money for ​other important prepping items, like a premade bug out bag or ​emmergency food.

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Last update on 2023-03-12 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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