About Atomic Lighter

By HighYa Staff
Published on: Aug 10, 2017

Advertised as a tactical rechargeable lighter, Atomic Lighter promises to use plasma arc technology that can quickly create fire, without gas or butane.

The website tells us that this fuel-free rechargeable lighter works anywhere, anytime—including in the rain and the wind—just by pressing a button. We’re even told that it’s sure to light the first time, every time, and to last a lifetime.

The plasma lighter also claims to deliver more than 100 lights on a single charge. And when the time comes, it’s rechargeable by USB.

There’s little doubt that all of these features could be beneficial. But are they necessarily unique to Atomic Lighter? Are there other plasma options that should be on your radar during your research?

Let’s start by taking a look at the lighter’s price.

How Much Does Atomic Lighter Cost?

One Atomic Lighter is priced at $19.99, plus free S&H. During checkout, you’ll be able to purchase a second Atomic Lighter and an Atomic Beam flashlight for a separate $9.99 fee, bringing your total to $29.98.

All purchases come with a 30-day refund policy, less S&H charges. Atomic Lighter is sold through Bulbhead, a division of Telebrands, who can be reached at 855-668-1655.

Now, let’s take a look at the mechanics behind products like this.

How Do Plasma Arc Lighters Work?

At its most basic, Atomic Lighter is a type of plasma arc lighter. What in the world is this?

Without going into unnecessary detail, Timothy Dahl from Popular Mechanics tells us that instead of using fuel and creating an open flame, arc lighters work “by creating a small electrical arc between two electrodes that is much hotter than a flame, and it's windproof.”

Why the ‘X’ pattern? According to one Redditor:

“The current (arc) will only flow between two electrodes with a large voltage difference (i.e. one is positive and one is negative), and the current will follow the shortest available path (here, vertical or horizontal, if available, instead of diagonal). There don't seem to be any combinations of high and low electrode voltages that would produce two simultaneous diagonal arcs.

So instead, the arcs must be produced at different times. The lighter only applies a voltage across one diagonal pair of electrodes at a time, and switches back and forth more quickly than you can see.”

Is this like harnessing lightning in the palm of your hand, as claimed by TV personality Hunter Ellis in the Atomic Lighter commercial?

While both utilize electricity, it might be more accurate to think of arc lighters as harnessing a strong static-like zap, instead of something like a powerful lightning bolt. As an example, Youtuber Gadget Addict reported that it felt like a sting that’s “not that bad” (although we’re by no means implying you should do the same):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vD2H4fuwxrM

In addition to mild pain if you carelessly touch the arc, let’s discuss some other considerations to keep in mind if you’re thinking about purchasing something like Atomic Lighter.

What Are Some Potential Pros & Cons For Plasma Lighters?

While we didn’t encounter any in-depth online buying guides at the time of our research, based on many of the customer reviews we read for competing models, many seemed to appreciate the fact that plasma lighters:

  • Can work in just about any condition (including wind and rain)
  • Recharge easily through any USB port and are battery powered
  • Are much safer, since no flammable fluid is required

On the other hand, the lighting surface is limited (usually meaningfully smaller than the end of a cigarette) and when in use, these lighters are reported to emit a high-pitched squeal that some users have claimed can be annoying.

Given some of these advantages and disadvantages, will Atomic Lighter be good for all the different tasks mentioned in the commercial?

While we didn’t test the device firsthand, based solely on the apparent narrow distance between its electrical arcs, it seems like it could suffice for lighting thinner surfaces, like candles, fireworks fuses, or the end of a small rope.

However, since many online reviewers for third-party products often mentioned difficulty lighting something as small as cigarettes, firing up a stogie might not rank at the top of any arc lighter’s list of abilities.

And if you’re going to use one for a bonfire or a backyard barbecue, it’s likely that to catch as quickly as shown in the Atomic Lighter commercial, we’d imagine any materials would need to be soaked in a propellant.

Atomic Lighter vs. Other Plasma, Flameless, & Arc Lighters

In the previous section, you might have picked up that we frequently referenced arc lighters in general. Why? Because by typing any of the above phrases into your favorite search engine, you’ll quickly find that Atomic is competing for the same customers as perhaps hundreds of other arc lighters.

In addition, the majority of these featured the same key selling points as Atomic, such as the ability to light in almost any condition, USB rechargeability, 100+ lights per charge, and lightweight portability.

Given this, based on a quick Google Shopping search, here were some of the more popular options at the time of our research, as well as their differentiating features:

Product Price Special Features
Atomic Lighter $19.95, plus free S&H Lifetime Warranty
Arc Lighter $34.99 A larger 7.6" x 1.0" x 0.7" size, silent ArcLighter Technology, High-end construction and materials
Tesla Coil Lighters $13.99 Compact 3” x 1.75” x 0.5”, 3 oz size; Up to 300 lights per charge
Plazmatic Lighters $29.99-$45 Many different colors and finishes, full recharge in 60 minutes, Whisper quiet design
TekDeals $13 Zinc, steel, and ceramic construction; Can last up to 300 lights
The Inferno Lighter $29 Wider space between electrodes

How to choose the best option? As with many other product decisions, it largely depends on those factors you deem most important. For example:

If the price is your number one factor, TekDeals was the lowest option out of the above. However, while there's no way to know how they match up as far as quality, we found some plasma lighters for sale through independent retailers on sites like eBay and Amazon for as little as $2.

On the other hand, if an emphasis on design and high-quality materials is important to you, the Arc Lighter is perhaps the standout option. However, it was also one of the most expensive flameless lighters we encountered during our research, and was also pending release.

Speaking of expensive, some of Plazmatic’s arc lighters topped the list at $45, although they seemed to offer meaningfully more design options to suit your style.

Finally, it’s important to factor in the manufacturer’s online customer reputation (Is it mostly positive? Are there any common complaints?), as well as their refund policy (including associated fees). How does all of this stack up for Atomic Lighter?

Our Final Thoughts About Atomic Lighter

Like the majority of their other products we’ve researched, Bulbhead (aka Telebrands) stands behind Atomic Lighter with a 30-day refund policy. This means that if you only order one and aren’t satisfied, you won’t be out more than a few dollars in return shipping and a little bit of your time.

And while you’ll also be able to purchase a second lighter and the Atomic Beam flashlight for only $9.99, it’s important to emphasize that this fee is nonrefundable.

Given this, if Atomic Lighter’s specifications seem to match your needs better than other plasma, flameless options, it doesn’t seem you could go wrong.

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38 Consumer Reviews for Atomic Lighter

Average Consumer Rating: 2.1
Rating Snapshot:
5 star: 5 4 star: 6 3 star: 0 2 star: 3 1 star:  24
Bottom Line: 29% would recommend it to a friend
Showing 1-11 of 38
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  • True crap

    • Milwaukee, WI,
    • Jun 12, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    The Atomic Lighter can't light lint on fire. Maybe if I was in a survival situation, it would be better than nothing. I'm afraid to try other Atomic products due to the poor performance. Don't waste your money. Buy a Zippo!

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • Garbage!

    • Rochester, NY,
    • May 31, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    Junk, piece of crap. Out of the box, it did not work, and no luck returning it. My neighbor threw his away in a week; it wouldn't charge. When it was charging it lit one time and died. Many reviews tell me to never buy a BULBHEAD product. They should be sued. This product is a bad joke! Shame on Hunter Ellis and Nick Bolton for their paid endorsement.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 2 out 2 people found this review helpful

    Buy it and take a chance

    • Pennsylvania,
    • May 21, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I just bought the Atomic Lighter today and I've had no problems so far. I am reading all the reviews and hear about people complaining about how it's not late very many times but I'm sitting here flicking it as we speak and I'm up to my 75th flick in the lighter is still going strong. I guess I got lucky and got one of the good ones. Hopefully, it doesn't break in a couple of months like every other product out there that you buy. I have a couple of Atomic products (I have the lantern, I have the flashlight, and this lighter now) and have not been let down with any of these products. Keep up the good work Atomic.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 5 out 5 people found this review helpful

    Works great even with lighting cigarettes!

    • Saint George, UT,
    • Apr 24, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I bought from Walmart for $20, and honestly, I couldn't be happier with it. Yeah, lots of people complain that a cigarette can't fit between the arcs but it doesn't need to; putting a cigarette up against it lights it instantly. And my understanding of electrical arcs leads me to believe that if you put an object between the two diodes would stop the electrical current necessary for the lighter to work. I say this because I saw people complain that their cigarette can't fit between the diodes. I didn't even charge it before using it and I didn't have to for almost two days. I really do like this lighter, and have absolutely no complaints about it.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 5 out 7 people found this review helpful

    Double offer is a scam!

    I placed an order for the Atomic Lighter during a special offer TV ad. The TV ad stated that if you placed your order now, you would get their "DOUBLE OFFER for just $19.99 plus free shipping." It even displayed a picture showing two lighters. Then, during check out, they have another "VERY SPECIAL OFFER" where you can opt to receive "another Atomic Lighter plus their Atomic Beam UAS Flashlight for just $19.99 plus no additional S&H." I declined the "VERY SPECIAL OFFER" and just opted for the main offer of two for only $19.99.

    Then you will get the usual offer to upgrade to their "deluxe" model or to have your initials engraved, which you can also opt out of. The last offer they will give is the opportunity to purchase a second "DOUBLE OFFER" for just an additional $19.99 and still with free shipping. I opted to this one.

    Unfortunately, when my order arrived there were only two lighters and not the four I was supposed to receive from wonderful double offer. I called the customer service number listed on my receipt and explained the problem with my order, and they said they didn’t have a double offer. When I told them about the TV ad, they asked me to send them an email with the information from the website where I placed my order showing the double offer, which I did. The very next day I got the below response:

    customerservice@telebrandscustomerservice.com

    RE:Re : Problem with order TELB 8939883-25357060

    Hi Larry,

    We regret to inform you that we do not offer two Atomic Lighters for the price of one. Please visit our website and recheck the offer or check the attachments.

    We hope this information is helpful to you. Please feel free to contact us with any further questions at 1-855-668-1655, Monday to Friday 7:00 AM to Midnight Eastern Time & Sat-Sun 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM Eastern Time.

    Regards,

    Customer Service Team

    Reminder: Your email security filters may send our communications to spam so please check there for updates as well and if you like, allow our future emails to be accepted.

    Really! A double offer for just $19.99 plus free shipping doesn’t mean you actually get two for the price of one! I guess this is just another one of the benefits we can expect to get these days from Common Core math.

    Recommendation: AVOID this offer at all costs! It is just a scam!

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 9 out 10 people found this review helpful

    Terrible lighter

    • Boston, MA,
    • Mar 23, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    So bad. I bought it, put it on the charger, got a full charge, pushed the button, and got one light. I turned it off, then on, and nothing. I plugged it back in and took it off. One light for maybe two seconds then nothing.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 9 out 11 people found this review helpful

    Piece of crap!

    I finally threw the piece of crap in the trash! I thought the commercial was real new tech coming forth. I spent my money on the piece of crap they are putting out; Atomic Wallet and Atomic Lighter! Well, the hinges broke on the wallet and I was unable' to put all of my wallet into theirs! I am an honest customer who bought the wallet and lighter. Do not buy any of this crap! Do not buy any of this crap!

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 8 out 8 people found this review helpful

    Works great, when it wants to.

    • Springfield, MO,
    • Mar 10, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I purchased my Atomic Lighter at a Bed Bath & Beyond, got it home, and charged it up. It worked fine a couple of times (about 3), then went dead. I charged it up again, and it is not working, very well due to what seems to be a faulty "on" button.

    I know there is a switch on the bottom to allow it to be turned on and off, that is not the problem.

    More QA is needed at the factory obviously, good thing I was not needing fire in a life or death situation or I would not be writing this.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 14 out 17 people found this review helpful

    Atomic Lighter false advertising

    The TV commercial says but one, get one free. Their website says the same.

    So I ordered it, and they charged $40 and only sent one. So I called to resolve it, and they said that I have to buy another one to get one free.

    False advertising!

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 11 out 12 people found this review helpful

    Don't buy

    I made the purchase going by what the commercial claims, but learned very quickly that it's not how they claim. The prongs where it arcs are too close to fit a cigarette, and to light a cigarette, you have to move the cigarette around to get it all lit. Lighting cigarettes, you'll only get anywhere from 5-15 cigarettes lit, so if you're a smoker, then you only want this product if you are a motorcycle rider. If not a rider, you DON'T want to purchase this lighter for lighting cigarettes. I'm not sure how well it works on anything else because I purchased it for cigarettes. It'll probably work good on candles, but who lights candles all the time?

    If you return the product, you'll only get half of your money back, so think hard before you purchase this item. I wished that I didn't waste my money.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 12 out 12 people found this review helpful

    Like they said - JUNK!

    • Greeley, CO,
    • Mar 1, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I bought one for my wife. Fully charged it lasts two lights, nothing more. They'll get sued sooner or later for false advertising!

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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Showing 1-11 of 38

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