Wednesday 8 October 2014

An autumnal helping hand from Zippo (review)

If I hear the name Zippo, I immediately think of their iconic, metallic, windproof, flip-top lighters. In fact, Madhouse Daddy has a small collection of them, mainly featuring the Washington Redskins, as a souvenir of his time spent in the States during his youth. When they sent me through a selection of products to try out, I discovered that there is a lot more to the Zippo brand than just lighters though, and this selection is perfect for the autumn.

The product that instantly leapt out at me, as the resident cook, was the flexible utility lighter. 

It's got an incredibly bendy nozzle which makes it really handy for lighting things without having to be a contortionist - the gas on the hob, the pilot light on the boiler, candles ... nothing can resist me ! 

With the colder weather encroaching on us (the heating came on yesterday, showing that the temperatures have dropped), we all loved the idea of this Hand Warmer. I was a bit concerned about the safety aspect of a handwarmer using lighter fuel, but when I had a look at the instructions, it only uses a flame for the initial heat source. The instructions say : "With the lid off the Hand Warmer, hold the base unit with one hand and apply flame (from a lighter) to the catalytic burner unit for 20 to 30 seconds using the other hand. After ignition has been confirmed, replace Hand Warmer lid, let the unit heat for 1- 2 minutes (NO LONGER!) then, taking care in handling the Hand Warmer, carefully place it into the provided bag. Your Zippo Hand Warmer will now provide comfortable warmth. After ignition, heat is provided by a catalytic process without flame."

It all sounds a bit technical but all you really need to know is, it works ! If, for example, you spend hours hanging around at the sides of football pitches, if you work outside in all weathers or if you are heading to the ski slopes this winter, it's definitely a great investment. I'll definitely be popping it in my pocket when we go out trick-or-treating or watching firework displays. If you fill it up to the lower line, it will provide 6 hours of heat and if you fill it all the way, 12 hours, which is very impressive. The burner part should last for about 70 uses and can be replaced. 

The final two products have been put aside for use on Bonfire Night because they are absolutely ideal. The Campfire Starter has two huge advantages - firstly, it's a more eco-friendly option than kerosene firelighters (it is made of 100% all-natural recycled cedar sawdust) and secondly, it is easy to light even when wet. The Fire Starter Kit (excuse me while I sing a bit of The Prodigy !) will be another lifesaver on Firework Night - it's a small and easy-to-use kit with waxed water-resistant tinder sticks that are easy to light with the flint spark lighter.

I must admit, I do love autumn for all the outdoor fun, kicking through leaves, hunting for conkers, trick or treating and watching fireworks. These Zippo products will help keep a smile on everyone's faces, saving time and keeping the chill at bay.

RRP :  Zippo Emergency Fire Starter Kit £20.75, Zippo Flexible Neck Utility Lighter £14.50, Zippo Handwarmer £20.75, Zippo Camp Fire Starter Puck £2.26

Disclosure : We received the products in order to write an honest review.

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