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Expert Tip: Cleaning Your Gear

​​By: Xikar

You’ve made the investment in Xikar cigar accessories and want to avoid diminishing returns. Just as a car would cease to function over time without regular maintenance, the same holds true for your lighters and cutters. There’s no worse feeling than tearing the wrapper when attempting to cut your premium cigar or having a malfunctioning lighter — thus delaying your cigar gratification. Buying cigar accessories can be a false economy, but if you take care of, and maintain them, you will extend their life and increase your enjoyment of premium cigars.

Lighters

A lighter, at first glance, appears to be a rather simple tool. Fill it with fuel, press a button, and presto you’ve got fire...until you don’t. To find out why a functioning lighter has ceased to work properly, you have to do a little digging to get to the root of the problem.

The first step in diagnosing your specific issue would be to purge and refill your Xikar lighter. To purge your lighter, simply press the fuel valve with a small screwdriver — or any other similar tool — and keep the valve pressed until the hissing stops and the lighter is empty. As an additional step, I always try to light the lighter a few times to purge any residual fuel in the fuel line. Now, fill your Xikar lighter with triple refined premium butane. You are using triple refined premium butane, right? Then, let the lighter sit for a few minutes until it comes back up to room temperature. Consistently using low-grade butane will clog the nozzle and reduce your lighter’s performance over time — much like putting low octane gas in an expensive performance car would damage the engine. If your problem was air pockets in the fuel line, this will rectify your issue. There are two important takeaways: 1) always use triple refined premium butane, and 2) always purge your lighter before refilling with triple refined premium butane. If purging your Xikar lighter and refilling it doesn’t do the trick, the next step would be to examine the ignition valve for any detritus — lint, ash, or tobacco bits — that may be prohibiting the lighter from lighting. A short breath, like blowing out a candle, into the ignition valve should clear out any remains. I would recommend going a step further and using a can of compressed air. By using compressed air, you can focus the powerful burst of air on the specific area and clear out any inhibiting debris. You always want to be sure to light your cigar with the very tip of the flame — holding the lighter away from your cigar and not touching it — to ensure no ash or other contaminants fall into the burner.

Cutters

Using an improperly maintained cutter on a premium cigar can be fraught with peril — imagine trying to slice into a thick, perfectly prepared Porterhouse steak with a butter knife…you get the picture. During the course of regular use, both natural elements and sediment can prevent your Xikar cutter from doing its job properly, and can ruin an otherwise perfect moment between you and your blend of choice.

To keep your Xikar cigar cutter in tip-top shape, we recommend periodically cleaning and lubricating the locking/opening mechanism. First, clean the blades and remove any debris with rubbing alcohol, either with a Q-tip or cloth. To lubricate the cutter, we recommend using a couple drops of graphite lubricant in the opening/locking mechanism, and opening and closing the cutter a few times to work in the lube. After you wipe away any excess lubricant, your Xikar cutter should be as good as new.

​We anticipate that this article and its information can be used to your benefit to extend the life of your cigar accessories. If the above steps don’t remedy your issue, Xikar offers a lifetime warranty on their products — simply send your lighter or cutter to Xikar for service, and they’ll fix or replace your product.