SURVIVAL

Best Waterproof Matches: Don’t Let Wind or Water Get in The Way of Your Fire

waterproof matches on wood
Dennis Owens
Written by Dennis Owens

In wilderness, you need to stay safe and build a fire whenever you need one. It’s not always simple, as the weather conditions might not be in your favor. For a good fire starter, knowing more about the best waterproof matches available on the market is the spot to start from.

Depending on where you think you will use these matches, you have a large variety you can choose from. The most reliable matches that will prove to be extremely efficient in harsh conditions are not what you will need for a regular camping weekend.

That’s why we have more information about different brands and the specific features of their waterproof matches for you. Are you ready to complete your fire starting kit or put one more item in your survival kit?

Let’s see what properties should a regular waterproof match have and identify its upgrades to unbeatable waterproof and windproof matches!

Product NameWater-ResistantWind-ResistantBurning TimeNumber of MatchesPrice
Uco Titan StormproofYesYes25 seconds12Check price on Amazon
Storm Proof BigtproductsYesYes12 seconds25Check price on Amazon
Coghlan’S 1170 StormYesYes15 seconds25 but only has 2 striker surfacesCheck price on Amazon
Survival Nato ApprovedLimitedLimited10 - 15 seconds - even under water25Check price on Amazon
Coleman 829-205T WaterproofVery limitedVery limited5 - 10 seconds4Check price on Amazon

Features To Consider For Waterproof Matches

Regular waterproof matches are easy to do at home or purchase online and from various stores. They are not the best of the best, but a little rain will not stop them from lighting up and burning for a short while. For waterproof matches, there are a few factors you need to look at before choosing a product.

Durability

No matter how waterproof a match claims to be, its ability to stay useful in your pocket or pack is huge. You have to know that you can rely on them to light on when you need.

Packaging

Having great matches in a horrible pack will cost you functionality of the match. The reason is because they can slip out and get lost in your bag, the striker can degenerate and leave them useless, or the package can trap moisture and cause them to be gummy.

Water-resistent-matches

Whether it’s a plastic tube or a more sophisticated case, it should have certain features such as air tight closing, light weight, the ability to float on water, not sink in it, enough space to store as many matches as possible and an ergonomic shape to fit it in your bag, pocket or other places. Moreover, the striker pads should be safe inside it.

Comfort

If you have a match that is too small to comfortably hold while lighting it can give you as much trouble as if they won’t latch at all. If it is to short it can mean that your fingers will get burnt as you are trying to light your fire, especially in windy situation.

Amount

There is a difference between just wanting to have a few on hand for emergencies and making them your one and only way to light a fire.

Shelf Life

If you are only getting them for emergencies, only camp occasionally, or even if you do plan to use them a lot, you need to know how long they will store for and in what kind of conditions they need to be stored.

lighting a match

There is nothing worse than trying to light a match that is expired.

Reliability

Don’t light match after match because the wind puts the fire off! Save them by opting for both waterproof and windproof matches. In order to be prepared for surprise storms, you can add a case of high quality matches in your survival kit.

Be sure that you know what each manufacturer considers extreme. Windproof, wind resistant, water proof, water resistant, and weather proof are all different terms that can be confusing.

Striker

There are match tubes that have phosphorous pads on the top and on the bottom. These may become impossible to use, so it’s best to put some inside as well.

home made strike

While most waterproof matches are almost strike anywhere matches, being safe is better than being sorry.

Top 5 Product Reviews For Your Consideration

Below is a list with 5 types of stormproof and waterproof matches recommended for various circumstances. Having the right tool at the right time is part of what it takes to be prepared. We took our own advice and included the important things to look for so that you did not have to spend hours scouring the internet.

Uco Titan Stormproof Match Kituco titan match kit

Price: Approximately $9

Weight: 0.16 pounds

Dimensions: 4.5 inches tall and 1.5 inches in diameter

Specific features:

  • The wind doesn’t stand a chance in the way of these titan stormproof matches
  • Each piece can burn for up to 25 seconds
  • Every match stick has the ability to stay lit underwater
  • Feature a cool case that is also waterproof
  • The case floats in water and comprises a striker holder
  • Includes 12 matches and replacement strikers
  • Comes with a cord for attaching to a lanyard or clip

Best use: This is just right for harsh weather condition and all around use.

The UCO Titan Stormproof Match Kit is here to switch your focus from having capable matches to light a fire in need to other survival issues. Their users were really impressed by their size and the fact that they’re exactly as advertised. The case in which they come from is made of plastic, so they are easy to carry.

However, they are known to be a lot larger than other matches with the same properties. The striker pad that comes along with the 12 waterproof matches is also waterproof, but it cannot be used underwater. Although bulky, these huge match sticks have the ability to save your life when a storm hits and you are in the wilderness.

If you’re worried you might drop a match in a puddle, worry no more! It will stay lit underwater, so you can just pick it up and light that fire! Your success is guaranteed as long as you have them with you or in your bug out bag. 25 seconds should be enough to get the fire started and stay safe for a while.

PROS:

  • Stays lit for 25 seconds
  • Water-proof
  • Striker pad is included

CONS:

  • They are somewhat bulky
  • Striker pad will not work underwater

Related: If you are looking for more security in your ability to light a fire, look at purchasing Fiber Light Fire Starter to put with it. The fiber is in a tin and is also water resistant.

Check the price on Amazon

Storm Proof Match Kit Bigtproductsstormproof match kit

Price: Approximately $10

Weight: Item’s weight is 8 ounces and kit’s weight is 1.7 ounces

Dimensions: Each match stick is 2.75 inches long

Specific features:

  • The durable ABS plastic case can hold up to 40 waterproof matches
  • The initial package contains 25 match sticks and 3 strikers
  • The plastic case is also provided with a cotton ball inside it that can be used to make fire
  • The plastic case floats in water instead of sinking in
  • A striker pad is incorporated in the plastic case and it can be changed when it can no longer be used
  • The matches are long enough not to burn your fingertips
  • You have 15 seconds to light the fire with one match stick
  • Highly resistant in windy and rainy conditions
  • They have the ability to stay lit underwater for the entire burning time of 15 seconds

Best use: These have a universal use.

The Storm Proof Match Kit BigTProducts is no titanium match kit, but it’s really close. The matches are of extremely high quality and will not let you down. They are long enough to burn for 15 seconds and not let heat get to your fingertips. In addition, they will stay lit when water is pouring down on them or if you drop them.

This kit comes with 3 striker pads and it has enough room for you to add more match sticks. Initially, it contains 25 pieces, but you can add 15 more! Reliable when you are in nature and you want to make a fire, these water resistant matches should be handy in vital situations.

If the incorporated striker pad becomes useless, you will find 2 more inside this kit that will save the day. Whether you are now putting together a fire starting kit or want to improve the one you already have, these matches could be a fantastic addition.

PROS:

  • Comes with 25 match sticks
  • Includes 3 striker pads
  • Floats in water
  • Will light even in the pouring rain

CONS:

  • Striker pad has a short life span
  • Stays lit for 15 seconds

Related: Sometimes the problem with starting a fire is having the timber. With this Firestarting Tinder Torch Survival Tin you have tinder that will go perfectly with your waterproof matches.

Check the price on Amazon

Coghlan’s 1170 Storm Matchescoghlan storm matches

Price: Approximately $6

Weight: 0.11 pounds

Dimensions: 2.17 x 0 x 0 inches

Specific features:

  • Delivered in a waterproof tube provided with 2 striker surfaces; one at the bottom and the other one at the top
  • They are made in England with the sole purpose of being used in windy and rainy weather conditions
  • Heavy rain or strong wind will not put out the flame made by each match stick
  • They light up easily regardless of the weather conditions
  • Immersing these waterproof matches into water while they are lit, will not extinguish them
  • 25 pieces are included in a standard waterproof tube
  • Each piece stays lit for around 10 seconds

Best Use: Perfect for windy or rainy conditions.

The Coghlan’s 1170 Storm Matches can prove to be lifesavers! These waterproof and windproof matches aren’t made for survivalists only. They should be part of any hiker or camper’s bag. Since they are lightweight and come with a case provided with striker pads, they can be nicely fitted in any small compartment.

The burning time of one match stick is around 10 seconds, which is less than other waterproof matches. Depending on which situation you want to be prepared for, you can opt for these or for an upgraded version of them.

The red tip of every match emanates a thick smoke, similar with that of a road flare. Maybe this information will give you an idea of one of its alternative uses. Coghlan’s Storm Matches don’t have an expiration date, especially if you keep them in a zip-lock bag and low humidity conditions over the years.

PROS:

  • Made for windy and rainy weather
  • Makes a great flare
  • Perfect size for an emergency kit

CONS:

  • Much shorter than other waterproof matches
  • Only burns for about 10 seconds

Related: If you would like to make sure that you have plenty of kindling everywhere you go, think about adding Fatwood Sticks Magnesium Chips to your emergency kit as well.

Check the price on Amazon

Survival Matches Nato Approvedsurvival nato matches

Price: Approximately $9

Dimensions: Small plastic tube with 25 medium-sized match sticks

Specific features:

  • These are military grade match sticks approved by NATO
  • One plastic tube contains 25 match sticks
  • The plastic tube is provided with striker pads
  • Waterproof and windproof matches ready to be used in survival situations
  • Able to burn between 10 and 12 seconds

Best use: Not in extremely wet or windy conditions, but during nature walks, vacations in nature and in crisis situations

The Survival Matches NATO Approved have a more general use than the specific ones that are made especially to last and be used in rainy and windy conditions. These matches are good to have, but you have to consider a few aspects.

According to multiple users, the plastic tube that contains 25 waterproof matches can be easily opened because it doesn’t screw in. Theoretically this wouldn’t be a problem since they are supposed to be water resistant.

Even so, they could fall out of your bag or get so wet that the red phosphorous that is inflammable becomes something like a paste. Since these wonder matches are not strike anywhere matches, you have to be prepared with a few extra strike pads.

The strike pads that come along with the plastic tube don’t last very long. Only about half of 25 match sticks can be lit with it. As long as you plan on using them in less extreme situations, these survival matches will not let you down.

PROS:

  • Great for camping
  • Perfect sized for any bag.
  • Lights quickly

CONS:

  • The tube it comes in doesn’t seal
  • Won’t work in extreme situations
  • The striker is not good that long

Related: To get around the bad striker and case, you could purchase the UCO Firefly 3-in-1 Waterproof Match Container. It is waterproof, shuts securely, has a LED light, and contains replaceable strikers.

Check the price on Amazon

Coleman 829-205T Waterproof Matchescoleman waterproof matches

Price: $1 – $11

Weight: 1.9 ounces

Dimensions: 4.5 x 3 x 1 inches

Specific features:

  • Advertised as camping matches
  • Waterproof to some extent

Best use: These types of matches are meant for outdoors use. They are specifically recommended for camping.

The Coleman 829-205T Waterproof Matches are pretty decent matches. Various users were not too pleased by their quality. However, there’s a big difference between stormproof matches and simple waterproof matches.

This brand might not be the best there is out there, but their matches are not totally useless. If you are careful enough, the match sticks will not break and the red phosphorous will not dissolve unless it is kept in a very humid or wet place.

While you can’t rely on Coleman’s waterproof matches in extreme situations, you can light a fire when you’re out camping. Keeping the stormproof matches for more dangerous situations is a great idea if you already own a pack of these matches.

Since they come in regular boxes, don’t expect them to be water resistant or able to light up if the striking pad is wet.

PROS:

  • Great for emergencies
  • Small enough to fit in a tight space

CONS:

  • They are not waterproof
  • They break easily
  • Must be stored correctly otherwise they get gummy and won’t lit.

Related: Think about adding this Ultimate Fire Starting Survival Kit Magnesium Chips to your purchase. The match case has a striker, is water-proof, and shuts securely. They tin has magnesium and tinder to help you start a fire quickly.

Check the price on Amazon

Pick Water Resistant Matches Accordingly

Waterproof and stormproof matches should not be a mystery to you anymore. Their features are pretty straightforward, so all you have to do is to think about where you’re planning to use them. You don’t need NATO approved matches in any circumstances.

High-quality-waterproof-matches

That’s why you don’t have to waste money on something that you don’t need. However, if you’re preparing for the most unusual and dangerous situations, then by all means, get those and another type just to be sure. Keep in mind that camping matches and regular outdoor matches will not get your through the apocalyptic times.

Most match kits don’t include a large number of matches. Purchasing more is ideal because you will not find them in case of crisis anymore. Multiple survival movies teach us that scouting trips could bring bad news and that’s something no one wants.

Put more cases in your bug out bag and inside your survival kit and add some in your car as well. You never know when you will need them!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Dennis Owens
Dennis Owens

Dennis Owens is a graduate of National Camping School and REI Outdoor School. He knows everything about what gear to take with you, how to plan your trip to stay safe and what to do if you get lost in the mountains. We are lucky to have Dennis with us as he is a ‘walking encyclopedia’ when it comes to the wilderness.

  • john hill

    Despite significant progress in the inventions for making a fire over the past century and the presence on the market of tourist equipment their great diversity ranging from the usual lighters to the chemical incendiaries, matches remain the most popular tool for kindling fire in camping trips, picnics and other “outputs” in nature.
    However, despite the simplicity of the match as the fire source, there are lots of types of matches, I suggest to read this article to understand.

    • Dennis Owens

      The basis remains the same, the technology that we have today only improved it and make the matches for effective than ever. Thanks for recommending our article, John!

  • Conrad Burke

    Whenever I’m on a camping, a bic lighter stays on my pocket and matches on my backpack. It’s great that there useful inventions which suits the changes around us as the time passes by. though I’ve been seeing a lot of alternative ways to have waterproof matches without adding extra $ to buy waterproof matches, such matches on the market will also save time for people who are ready to spend more and doesn’t have time to create DIY waterproof matches.

    • Dennis Owens

      A Bic lighter is an okay idea for me, although it does not have the reliability that you would expect because this is something I consider as a casual lighter. Waterproof matches are expensive, but you can completely depend on their reliability.

  • Jamie Lyons

    If you’re looking for reliable waterproof matches, you’ll struggle to do better than the UCO Titan. These matches are incredible, once you light one, that’s it, you can try blowing it out and you can dunk it in water, though you will not be able to put it out.

    They are huge, around 10cm in length and have a burn time of around 20-25 seconds, though this will depend on your conditions.

    Wherever you are in the world and whatever the conditions you face, you can be absolutely sure that the Titans will help you to get a fire started.

    • Dennis Owens

      UCO Titan is one of what we call as institutions when it comes to waterproof matches. It’s been around for quite a while now, and its reliability and built are definitely unquestionable.

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