Long ago, back in my early twenties, I happened upon an artifact while digging through my Father’s dresser (Lord knows what I was actually looking for). The artifact in question was an old Ronson lighter that immediately brought me back to my childhood. It reminded me of simpler days and the unmistakable smells of my Dad’s pipe. Whiffs of Captain Black pipe tobacco. The scent of Ronsonol from the lighter. Long since quitting the habit, the lighter, now unused, found its way to the bottom of a dresser drawer. Here it sat through the years. It was a stroke of destiny that gave me the idea to seek out a close friend of mine affiliated with a lighter repair service. After introductions and a lighter repair later, my Dad had his nostalgic old friend back and I embarked on a career working for said lighter repair business, building and maintaining their websites. Funny how things work out sometimes.
So what about you? You came to this site for a reason and more than likely it was because you have a lighter to be repaired. If a lighter is under warranty then its a no-brainer. No cost = good. But if the lighter is out of warranty, the decision becomes to repair or not to repair and the reasons why.
A very common reason for lighter repair is the sentimentality that it holds for the owner or new owner. Usually applies to a much older lighter belonging to a relative, deceased or otherwise, and holds a special place in the heart of the current owner. Those who contact us about repairing a lighter for sentimental reasons are also warned that the repair is not a “restoration”. As with all our repairs, there is nothing we can do about dents, scratches, and plating wear. In cases where these factors are present, we usually encourage the fact that these features add to the charm of the lighter. We can, however, clean the lighter thoroughly. We do not recommend spending the money on a repair if the lighter is going back into storage of any kind and is not intended to be used. Defeats the whole purpose.
Collectors collect collections and lighters have found a recent resurgence in collectability. There are some lighters out there of exceptional value and others that are so common they are hardly worth the metal used to make them. Of course, this is all judged through the lens of a collector. Monetary value can be a strong reason to get your lighter repaired. While the actual dollar amount might not be greatly affected, the desirability of a working collectible piece certainly could be.
Apart from sentimentality or dollar value, there remains the “actual” value that a lighter retains. This refers to the value of the lighter as a flame creation device that is above and beyond the plastic garbage that makes up most disposable lighters. Yes, fire is fire and both can be created via cheap or expensive lighters, but when it comes down to it if all you were looking for was a small flame to light your tobacco–you wouldn’t be on this website. When it comes to actual value–if you’re going to use the lighter, then it’s worth repairing.
The decision to repair your lighter usually falls within one of the three categories above. If it your intention toots the lighter into a drawer for the next fifteen years then don’t bother. But if you intend to use it and there is value in your lighter, by all means–get it repaired while you can.