What Fuel Can You Use in a Coleman Lantern or Stove? ( Find Out )

Coleman has been a long-trusted brand for campers when it comes to all sorts of outdoor gear! Their products are known for being durable, versatile, and reliable. Part of that great reputation comes from being able to switch up how you use each product; this is true for both their camping stoves and lanterns.

So what fuel can Coleman lanterns and stoves use? The main types of fuel for Coleman lanterns and stove are. Coleman Fuel/white gas, kerosene, unleaded gas, and propane.

The fuel type can very dependant upon the model of your Coleman gear as well as when it was made.

Let’s go over:

  • Each type of fuel used in these camping lanterns and stoves
  • The properties of each
  • The pros and cons to using that certain fuel to power your gear

In the end, you will be prepared and ready to fire up that stove or read comfortably by the light of your lantern in the tent!

Coleman Fuel/White Gas

One of the most popular fuel types to use in a Coleman lantern or stove is, of course, Coleman fuel. This is also commonly known as “white gas.” It is made of petroleum naphtha, which performs quite differently than other standard fuels.

However, it does share some properties with gasoline; both are highly flammable and burn at high temperatures.

Coleman fuel is compatible with both camping lanterns and stoves.

Pros and Cons


  • Coleman fuel is easy to find and available on some online stores. With just the click of a button, you have it in your hands with no mess and no fuss.
  • In some places, you can find it sold for a gallon at a time.
  • It burns cleaner than other fuels, meaning that it is less harmful to you and to the environment.
  • This gas does not produce as much smoke as other forms of fuel. This makes it easier to breathe and to see while you are using your Coleman stove.
  • Coleman fuel puts out higher levels of heat than other gases so you can get dinner ready faster.
  • This type of fuel will clog your fuel lines less than some other fuel types would.


  • The Coleman fuel brand name is sometimes more expensive than other brands. The generic white gas is likely to be more affordable.
  • Once you open the canister, your fuel is only good for a few months. If you do not use it all while it’s fresh, you have wasted a lot more money than you would have with other fuels.

Where to Find Coleman Fuel/White Gas

If you go looking for either of these fuels and can’t seem to find them, try looking in the following places and trying these tips:

  • Coleman fuel can be found on Amazon right alongside any other camping equipment you may need.
  • Local retailers like WalMart or Dick’s Sporting Goods may carry it.
  • If your local retail stores do not stock Coleman fuel, try inquiring with the Coleman company itself through email or phone.

Compatible Products

Coleman has several camping stoves and lanterns that are compatible with these fuels. These are called “Duel Fuel” products. This means that you can either use Coleman fuel/white gas or unleaded gasoline to power them.

  • This camping lantern is a good fit for those wanting to use this particular gas for power.
  • If you need a stove that will use the same fuel as your lantern, take a look at this model.

Safety Warnings

Any fuel you consider buying has its own health and safety issues if not used or handled properly. Here are the main warnings that you should keep in mind when using Coleman fuel or white gas to power your camping lantern or stove:

  • White gas is highly flammable. Unless you intend on using it for that purpose, store it with caution. Do not leave it near other heat sources and especially not near you when you are not using it.
  • This fuel can irritate your skin. After being exposed to it, wash yourself off safely.
  • It is extremely toxic to aquatic animals. Please do not dump it in the water; the environmental aftereffects can be devastating.
  • Never use it in enclosed spaces. The white gas can make you dizzy or faint. Prolonged exposure can irritate your respiratory system and make breathing difficult.
  • Never ingest it or get it in your eyes. If this happens, you need to call emergency services for help.

For more information on Coleman fuel and how to use it safely, look here.


Kerosene is a tried and true fuel. People have used it for over a century to fuel their lamps/lanterns and heat their homes, believe it or not!

It is slightly similar to white gas because they are derived from the same substance: petroleum. The difference is that kerosene is heavily distilled and burns more slowly than white gas would.

This fuel is used primarily for camping lanterns.

Pros and Cons

When it comes to kerosene powered lanterns, there are quite a few cons to go with the pros. Just consider the space where you will be using it, the weather, and your health.


  • Kerosene is affordable. One gallon of the stuff costs less than $10 in many different retail stores. Coleman fuel/white gas costs more for less product.
  • This fuel is also quite easy to get your hands on.
  • Kerosene lanterns give off more heat than others do. This is great news for people who are camping out in chilly weather!


  • It is not a clean fuel like white gas is; this means that kerosene is worse for your health if you breathe it in for an extended period of time.
  • Kerosene lanterns require more effort to light. You see, these lanterns need a generator to store the fuel in.
  • This fuel also only lasts for a few months, and if you store it in direct sunlight, it degrades faster.
  • This fuel emits smoke and powerful fumes that can have adverse effects on your health and the health of those around you.
  • Kerosene smells bad, and the odor is powerful.
  • Coleman does not stock very many options when it comes to lanterns that can be powered by the substance.

Where to Find Kerosene

Since kerosene is a semi-popular fuel choice, you have plenty of places to go if you need to fuel up.

  • Oftentimes, auto shops or gas stations will have it available.
  • Outdoor stores and camping stores may sell kerosene on location.
  • Major retailers like WalMart stock it in several of their stores.
  • Of course, Amazon always has what you need, including kerosene. You can even find it in the Coleman brand here.

Compatible Products

Coleman does not have a wide array of kerosene lanterns on the market currently. In fact, the only model on their site is this one. While their brand’s kerosene is the most cost-efficient, there are cheaper lanterns that use other fuel sources.

Safety Warnings

Much of what was said about Coleman fuel/white gas can be said about kerosene in terms of the safety and health of humans and the environment. However, there are a couple of additional things you need to know:

  • Kerosene is a risk to the environment at large; it is not concentrated on aquatic life, but other life as well.
  • Chronic exposure to kerosene can be incredibly bad for your health. Use it to power your lantern, but maybe don’t keep it around in the house to use on other things.

While all of these things seem scary enough to put you off the scent, take comfort in this: the World Health Organization has reported that there is insufficient evidence that kerosene is a carcinogen.

Unleaded Gasoline

This type of fuel may sound pretty familiar to you. It should! Most of us use unleaded gasoline every day when we drive. You may be surprised to know that campers with certain Coleman lanterns and stoves can use the same substance to power their own products.

Unleaded gasoline is a fuel derived from crude oil — you know, the stuff that we drill for on those rigs in the ocean. This oil produces the highly flammable energy source we use to carry us through our lives.

Pros and Cons

Even though it seems like there could be very few things wrong with unleaded gas because many people use it frequently, it has its downsides for several different reasons. Let’s get into why it could be a good choice and how it could potentially be something that just is not right for you.


  • As you already may know, unleaded gasoline is cheap and easy to get. Well, it’s relatively cheap; it depends on where you live.
  • You can use this furl for so many other things outside of camping — cars and lawnmowers come to mind.


  • More and more people every year are deciding to use electric cars or bikes over cars that run on gasoline. This is because the emissions put out from this gas are far from environmentally friendly. If you are someone who is very conscious of that sort of thing, go with white gas instead.
  • If it isn’t good for the environment, it’s not great for our bodies, either. Even unleaded gasoline can be harmful to us over time.
  • Eventually, this fuel will clog your fuel lines. This requires maintenance after the fact.
  • If you have ever been in the vicinity of a gas station, you know that gasoline has an overpowering odor. Those with sensitive noses may be better off choosing something less smelly.

Where to Find Unleaded Gasoline

This one is easy. You can find gasoline at any gas station near you (provided that there isn’t a shortage for some reason.) You can get it by the gallons for all of your camping and vehicular needs in one go.

Compatible Products

Coleman’s line of Dual Fuel stoves and lanterns that were mentioned in the section on white gas can be referenced when considering what to buy for your next camping trip.

Safety Warnings

The safety warnings about unleaded gasoline are more severe than others, though you should treat all with equal precaution.

  • Gasoline is highly flammable. It’s important that you store it properly. If you are a smoker, remember to light up far away from this fuel.
  • Prolonged exposure on the skin and repeated inhalation over a long period of time may cause organ failure or blood cancer.
  • If ingested, it has a high probability of being fatal.
  • Skin irritation can occur if you spill it on yourself. Wash it off safely.
  • Only use it in well-ventilated areas. If you don’t, you risk drowsiness, dizziness, respiratory irritation, and eventually asphyxiation and death.


Propane is used to heat houses as well as stoves and lanterns. Many people use it in their homes as the main source of warmth during winter.

It is a by-product produced from the processing of natural gas and petroleum.

Pros and Cons

The upsides and downsides of using propane are simple.


  • Since it is so commonly used, you can find it easily.
  • Your lantern and stove could both be compatible with the same propane container. You cut down on money by only having to use one as long as you don’t plan to use them at the same time, of course.


  • Winter campers really ought to choose another fuel source for their trip. Propane is difficult to heat to the proper temperature in extremely cold environments. You will spend more time trying to make it work with little to no positive results yielded overall.
  • Propane has a peculiar smell that not everyone can bear. People with sensitive noses should also go with white gas.

Where to Find Propane

  • Coleman has its own propane cylinders, but you can always choose another source if you prefer to. If you can’t find it on their site, call the number on their “Contact Us” page (link provided earlier.)
  • Major retailers like WalMart and even Target sell them in several locations.
  • Outdoor sporting and camping stores like Dick’s may stock propane canisters near you.
  • Again, Amazon can save the day if you need propane in a pinch.

Compatible Products

Coleman has a wide range of propane-powered lanterns and stoves for you to use!

  • This stove runs on propane fuel and it has extra neat features to block wind and heat your food fast. There are many other stoves on their site, but this one seems to be increasingly popular.
  • There are so many lanterns that are compatible with this gas that you just have to see them all for yourself.

Safety Warnings

  • Leave propane canisters and tanks out of your home. The chance for combustion and ignition is too great to risk, so it is always safe to be extra cautious.
  • Only use it in well-ventilated areas, like you would with any other fuel. Prolonged inhalation has adverse reactions.
  • Follow all instructions provided carefully. The individual manufacturer knows how to handle these canisters best.
  • Don’t allow them to be too near an open flame. While it isn’t as volatile as unleaded gasoline, propane cylinders will still explode if not stored properly.

Stacking them Up: Which Fuel is Best?

You know what you can use to power a Coleman camping stove or lantern, but which one is the best? It is really up to your situation and preference, but we have a recommendation based on these factors:

  • Affordability
  • Ease of use
  • Safety
  • Heat output
  • Compatible product availability

When you combine all of these things together, the clear winner is Coleman fuel/white gas. Here’s why:

  • It’s the cleanest fuel available, meaning that it keeps you and the environment reasonably safe. The smoke output and smell reduce your discomfort levels and lessen the risk of dangerous inhalation.
  • Kerosene lamps require a lot of effort, and white gas lanterns do not.
  • Although it is highly flammable, the benefits outweigh the risks as long as you use common sense.
  • It has one of the highest heat output levels of any of these with propane coming in dead last if you are camping during winter.
  • By using Coleman fuel, you have a world of options available when it comes to choosing a camping stove or lantern on their site. If you find out that it isn’t for you in the long run, you can always use unleaded gas as a backup without returning your product.

Just remember in the end to check out what kind of fuel your Coleman lantern or stove can use. These options are available to different models; you can’t just use anything you want and hope for a good outcome. In fact, that can be dangerous. Lanterns and stoves are made special to withstand only the heat of the compatible fuel.

Make the choice that is best for your needs, your safety, and your situation. For instance, those of you with children may want to use propane canisters because the fuel is not as easy to ingest as standard gasoline from a can is. Tailor your products to what makes for the best trip, and go have fun!

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Rickie Arms

Hi, I'm Rickie Arms, owner of Glampingorcamping.com. I am so invested in writing the best and most informative articles for you that I went out and bought a travel trailer just so I could write about it for you. I spend just about all of my off time both camping and glamping so I can share everything I have learned and will learn with you. I have spent my whole life camping and over the last 10 years, I have spent a large amount of time checking out glamping experiences with my wife and kids as well. Thank you for coming by and we hope to see you back here getting great information in the future. Rick Arms-

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