Adjusting the Hinge on your Zippo


broken zippo hinge


Is your zippo lighter starting to get old? Do you like to preform lots of zippo tricks for all your friends? After a while you may start to notice your zippo hinge is not as tight as it used to be or your lid does not close flush with the case anymore. This is caused from normal wear and tear or just abusive behavior (Zippo tricks) and can damage the lighter casing if left unattended for a long period of time. Realigning your zippo hinge can be a simple process if it is fixed before the lighter is too severely damaged.

In this article we will focus on how to realign/tighten a zippo hinge that is lose but has not yet damaged the case. In the situation where your hinge breaks off or damages the case, it is best to submit your lighter to Zippo for a free repair.

vise grips

Things you will Need:

  • A pair of pliers or Vise Grips
  • A thin rag or multiple shop-towels


Dismantling your Zippo and Preparation:

To start, you will want to dismantle your zippo and let all of the fuel evaporate as to eliminate leakage and a potential fire hazard. To dismantle the lighter, simply pull the Insert piece out of the casing, you do not need to dismantle the components of the insert as it is not needed for this repair.

preparing zippo for zippo hinge repair

Pull the lighter apart

After you have the insert removed from the case, lift the cotton pad on the bottom of the insert to expose the cotton swabs on the inside. Let the exposed cotton sit for a while to enure that all of the fuel has been evaporated out of the insert.


Adjusting your Zippo Hinge:

Now that you have the lighter dismantled and all of the fuel evaporated form the insert, you can begin adjusting your zippo hinge. The first thing you will want to do is determine where the damage is (pin or knuckles) and how you will come across fixing it. The most common type of damage is where the knuckles come loose and do not grasp the pin properly, this can cause the lid to become loose or misaligned. To fix this, you can simply re-crimp the hinge knuckles using a pair of pliers or Vise Grips. Make sure you cover the knuckles in a rag or shop-towel before re-crimping as this will protect the finish on your lighter and prevent you from damaging the lighter further. Make sure you do not crimp the hinge too much as this will “cease” the lid and thus exert unnecessary forces on the hinge brackets. Depending on your situation you may have to use a different method other than re-crimping. It is best to look at the damage and try and come up with a solution yourself. If you find that the hinge damage is too severe to fix or if you feel that the damage is beyond your ability to fix, then it is best to send your Zippo in for a free repair.


Re-Assemble your Zippo:

Now that you have your zippo hinge fixed and ready to go, you may now begin to re-assemble your lighter. To do this, simply refuel the lighter and reassemble the insert and case pieces.

Hopefully you were able to fix your zippo hinge, this task should not have to be done in the lifetime of your lighter under normal use. If you like to perform numerous zippo tricks or are just a rough user, you may have to adjust you zippo hinge quite regularly. If you find that you cannot fix the hinge your self or if the damage is beyond your ability to fix, it is best to send your lighter in for a free repair.

Fixed zippo hinge

A properly aligned zippo hinge!


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