A propane camp stove can be one of the most valuable camping items you’ll take with you on any camping trip. These versatile stoves are a great way to boil water or cook a gourmet meal on the trail or at the base camp site. Before you choose between portable camp stoves, though, have a look at this list of the top five features to look for in your new stove:
1. Wind Barriers
Many portable propane camp stoves come with wind barriers built-in, but if yours doesn’t, you should definitely think about how to make one or buy one separately. Larger stoves, such as two and three burner options, often have a lid that folds up to become a wind screen for the back. It’s best if these stoves also have fold-up sides that can become wind screens, as well.
2. Piezo Ignition
Piezo ignition is basically push-button ignition that starts your stove in one easy step. It’s also sometimes referred to as, “matchless”, because there’s no need for matches to fire it up. A propane stove with push-button ignition is easier to get started, even on a windy day, so you waste less time trying to get your stove up and running and have more time to cook your food.
3. Pressure Regulation
Unfortunately not all models today have built-in pressure regulation systems in place. If you’re looking for a stove that will consistently perform well in windy weather, at higher altitudes, and on propane fuel tanks that are getting low, this is a must-have. A propane camp stove that regulates the fuel pressure keeps your flame steadier and more consistent, which makes cooking easier.
4. Sensitive Controls
Another thing to look for in your portable stove is sensitive controls. All the best propane stoves, whether they’re three-burner stoves or backpacking stoves, have very sensitive flame controls so you can boil or simmer, depending on your needs. Lower quality stoves will cook at one temperature: high. This means you’re really limited as to what you can actually cook on your stove, so it’s best to invest in a stove that has more sensitive controls.
Of course, one of the top features to look for in a propane camp stove is portability. It seems like a no-brainer, but some stoves are less portable than others. Backpacking stoves will ideally pack up into a cooking pot that can protect their more fragile elements from wear and tear. Most good 2 burner propane camp stove models (as well as 3 burner stoves) have a closing lid that locks in place effectively to make them easier to transport.
These five features are found on many of today’s propane camping stoves, but not every propane camp stove will have all of them. Be sure to do your research and look at reviews of different stoves so that you find the perfect stove that has most or all of these features. This will ensure that you’re making a better investment in your stove so that you’ll get more for your money in the long run by having a stove that performs well and stands the test of time.