The Candle: How to Get the Most Burn Time from the Candle

ImageIn today’s market, there are lots of candle types to choose from.  Container candles, taper candles, votive candle, pillar candles to name a few.  Add to that, the different kinds of wax.  Paraffin wax, soy wax, beeswax, bayberry wax, and palm wax.  Scented or unscented as well. While there are many choices, there are a few basics that cover getting the most burn time from the candle.

1.  Trim the wick to 1/4 – 3/4 of an inch before you light it.  This helps increase good oxygen flow to the wick and helps to eliminate smoke and debris.

2.  Keep the lit candle away from drafts.  If the flame is being blown, it’s not burning the wax evenly and for quality burning, you want the flame still.

3.  Keep an eye on the melt pool that the flame is creating.  The candle should be burned until the melt pool is covering the top of the candle.  Once the melt pool goes through the outer wall, wax will fall down the side and burn time will be diminished because the wax is no longer capable of being melted.  (Tapers are designed for the wax to drip down the side, unless they are dripless.)

4.  Large candles benefit from multiple wicks.  They help the wax burn more evenly and their will be less waste.

5.  Pillar candles should have the warm walls bent in towards the wick after the flame is extinguished.  The unused wax will then be used the next time the candle is lit.

6.  Use a candle snuffer.  We’ve all blown out candles only to see the melted wax spray where it wasn’t supposed to be.  The snuffer keeps the wax in the candle and helps to keep the soot in place.

Following these simple steps will help increase your candle lighting burn time.  Always read and follow any candle burning instructions that come with your candle.

Sue Lichtenberg is the leading expert on candle making at The Cranberry Barn.  She has been creating candles since she was a young girl.

She is the founder of  The Cranberry Barn.

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