Choosing the best lantern is a great way to put your mind at ease and to be prepared for any type of situation. Whether you use it for hiking, for camping, or for emergencies at home, you will feel a lot safer if you make a good choice.
One of the first decisions you are faced with is whether to use a kerosene lantern or a propane model.
What are the main issues that you need to take into account in order to choose one that is right for you?
The Cost of the Lantern
To start with, you will need to buy a lantern. Does the kerosene vs. propane issue have any bearing on the cost of this item? Well, it is clear that there are a number of different models you can choose from in either case.
In general terms, a kerosene lantern is usually slightly more expensive to buy. However, it makes sense to compare prices on a few models that use each type of fuel. Is there one that looks perfect for you at a reasonable price?
The Running Costs
Which type of lantern is going to be cheaper for you to run over time? The answer is that propane tends to be a bit cheaper for most people to get hold of. It is also easier for most of us to buy as well, it is sold in a lot of grocery stores and gas stations.
Kerosene can be bought in small tanks from camping and some DIY stores. It is fair to say that it is more widely available in some countries than in others. Using a gas station with a kerosene pump will be cheaper than buying a tank, but it will still work out a little more expensive than using propane in the long run.
Don’t forget that fuel costs do fluctuate over time. If you want to get the cheapest option then you need to check out the current prices. If you are only going to use the lantern occasionally then the price difference probably won’t be big enough to make this a deciding factor, though.
Which is Better for the Environment?
Are you worried about which type of lantern will do more damage to the environment when you use it? It is clear that propane has a reputation for burning far more cleanly, with fewer harmful emissions released.
On the other hand, kerosene is seen as being more damaging to the environment. If you are planning to go camping in natural, unspoiled areas then you may place more importance on getting an eco-friendly model that produces less damage to the planet when you use it.
The use of disposable cylinders increases the environmental impact of any lantern. Try to use refillable tanks if you are able to.
Are both types of fuel greener than using a battery-powered lamp? Certainly, propane is generally seen as being a more environment-friendly option than batteries. With a kerosene lantern, the question of which is greener is up for debate.
Which is Safer?
The question of safety is another point to bear in mind. If you are keeping your lamp at home or carrying it with you then you need to be completely happy that it is safe to store and to use.
Both types of lantern give off potentially harmful fumes when used, so you should only use them in well-ventilated areas. Propane is slightly riskier in terms of possible leaks or explosion, although you should be fine with either if you are careful and only use well-maintained equipment.
Kerosene is regarded as one of the safest types of fuel you can store for domestic reasons. The reasons for this is that it needs a wick to light it. On the other hand, propane can explode more easily due to a spark or flame. Having said that, some people think that propane lanterns are easier and safer to light.
Choose the Right Lantern
Of course, one part of the kerosene vs. propane debate is around the exact type of lantern that you buy. Do you want a big model for a family trip or a smaller, lighter option for going hiking alone?
Once you find the perfect model, you may decide that the differences between propane and kerosene aren’t really at that important after all. Either type of lantern will do a fine job for you if you choose a model that suits your needs.