Aren’t Tiki torches designed to put you in a festive mood? Not for me. Instead of inspiring me to party, Tiki torches billowing smoke and fumes make me withdraw. It isn’t just that I know I won’t feel very well from all the fumes, and that I won’t be alone. While most Tiki torch lamp oil is more refined than the kerosene used in the past, it is a petroleum product and exposure can cause headaches, shortness of breath, skin disorders, and more. More than causing people not to feel well (which is bad enough), those burning fumes are just about the last thing our poor planet needs.
Tikki torches burn up fossil fuels causing global warming, and the petroleum-based paraffin oil–or propane, or citronella (95-97 percent paraffin)–is not a renewable resource. Imagine what one weekend of Tiki torch burning in the United States would do to our collective carbon footprint? (And, of course, electric Tiki torches burn energy in a different way.)
Who doesn’t love a campfire, fire pits, and the ambiance of flickering flame? I like the idea of torches. And, of course, light outside at night is very useful for lots of reasons, including seeing and enjoying dinner and drinks with friends and family.
Enter solar Tiki torches to save the day (and planet). And vegetable oil PorchTorch for those who want the real flame, but petroleum-free. For me, I am a huge fan of the LED solar Tiki Torches, with a lifespan of 100,000 hours and batteries that only need to be replaced every two years. Not only that, but the LED lights keep getting better. If you want a colorful outdoor lighting display for a holiday (red, white, and blue for the Fourth of July? Red and green for Christmas?) you can purchase colorful solar glow crystals.
REALITY CHECK: Solar Tiki Torches.
Expense: Comparable to oil-based torches.
Convenience: Available in most communities.
Durability: We recommend LED solar torches for longevity.
REALITY CHECK: PorchTorch vegetable torch oil.
Expense: $30 a gallon, the same as $30 a gallon for paraffin oil.
Energy-saving: Avoids using a non-renewable resource (petroleum).
Convenience: Not available everywhere, but can be purchased online.