How to Bleed a Butane Lighter

Butane lighters contain pressurized gas. When lit, a small stream of butane is released from the lighter's chamber; the butane burns, creating a steady flame. When you notice that the flame on your lighter is no longer as large as it once was, it may be time to refill the butane. Old butane must be removed, or bled, from a lighter before you add fresh fuel.

Butane lighters generally have a refill valve on the bottom.
  1. Locate the refill valve on your butane lighter. Gauge the size of the valve to determine what size screwdriver you need.

  2. Hold your lighter upright and away from open flames.

  3. Press the pointed edge of the screwdriver firmly into the refill valve. This displaces the cover on the valve, allowing pressurized butane to leak from the lighter. Listen for a hissing sound, signifying that your lighter is releasing butane from its pressurized chamber. Remove the tip of the screwdriver from the valve when the hissing sound stops.

  4. Shake your lighter vigorously. Press the edge of the screwdriver back into the valve to release any additional butane. Listen for the same hissing sound. Remove the screwdriver from the valve when the hissing sound stops.


  • Do not bleed a butane lighter near an open flame.
  • Do not smoke while bleeding a butane lighter.
  • Hold the lighter away from your face and body during the bleeding process.

About the Author

A professional writer since 1994, Eva Talent was trained as a journalist by the U.S. Army. She received two Army Commendation Medals and an Army Achievement Medal for journalistic excellence. Her press releases are frequently featured on the websites of the Department of Defense and the Army. Talent holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of Michigan.