Asked by: Prof. Darlene Rosenbaum IV

Why are my candle wick drowning?

  • Score 4.5/5

A wick keeps drowning, when it's too small for the candle. Sooner or later it's barely burning, extinguishing itself, in the liquid wax of the candle. The candle provides too much fuel to the undersized wick - it can't keep up, falls over, stops burning, and gets buried under the excess wax of the oversized candle. Read more

  • Why is my candle drowning the wick and going out?
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How do you keep a candle wick from drowning?

The best way to ensure a wick never gets too short is to burn the candle long enough to form a uniform pool of melted wax (but no longer than four hours). This prevents “tunneling,” or excess wax buildup on the side of the jar, which could melt during future burns and potentially drown the wick.

How do you stop a candle from flooding?

How to prevent candle tunneling
  1. The first time you light the candle, don't trim the wick. ...
  2. Let the candle burn long enough to get the entire top liquid wax. ...
  3. After the first burn, try to let the candle burn for long stretches as often as you can to keep that really wide opening and prevent tunneling later on.

What to do with a drowning candle?

Pull out a Q Tip and have it ready to go. Relight the troubled candle wick. (Only work with one at a time if you have more than one drowning wick, like I do here.) As soon as your wick is lit, carefully take your Q Tip and dip one end of it into the newly forming wax pool.

Why is my wick falling over?

Wick falls over

The wick has been inserted into the candle too loosely. This happens most frequently with pressed candles if the wick guide was not properly adjusted. It can also happen with cast candles if the wicks have too much space.

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Most frequently asked questions

Why does my candle wick curl?

The "mushroom" shape, formed at the end of a candle wick after burning, is the result of carbon buildup, where the flame consumes more wax than it can burn. ... If "mushrooming" occurs with your candle, we recommend trimming the carbon buildup off the wick between burnings.

Why do candle wicks not burn out?

The reason the wick does not burn is because the vaporizing wax cools the exposed wick and protects it. You may have seen the camping trick of boiling water in a paper cup. The cup does not burn because the water inside cools it. The liquid wax does the same thing for the wick.

What happens if candle wick is too long?

Burning a candle for too long will cause carbon to collect on the wick, leading it to “mushroom.” The wick will then become unstable and produce a dangerously large flame. Plus, your candle will start to smoke and release soot. Avoid this by always following the manufacturer's instructions.

How do you fix mushroom Wicks?

Fixing a mushroom wick is quite simple, all you need to do is trim the black cap of the wick and straighten the wick as normal. Although mushrooming wicks are an easy fix, when it comes to selling your candles, you may not want to have to tell customers how to fix these issues.

What is candle tunneling?

Candle tunneling occurs when only the center of the wax right around the wick melts and burns down. If candle tunneling occurs over time, you'll end up with a ring of hard wax around the outside of the candle. ... It also makes it harder and harder to light the wick as the candle continues to burn down.

Why is my candle drowning the wick and going out?

Can you use a toothpick as a candle wick?

To use a toothpick as a candle wick, all you need are a candle, a toothpick, and a pair of pliers. ... The point of using a toothpick is to let the candle burn more efficiently as the shorter wick doesn't produce a bright flame. As the wax melts, the toothpick gets coated in molten wax and burns brighter.

Are candles bad for your lungs?

Burning candles releases volatile organic compounds and particulate matter into the air. Particulate matter is a mixture of extremely small liquid droplets and particles that can enter your lungs. There's concern that extended exposure to particulate matter can lead to heart and lung problems.

Why can't you burn candles for more than 4 hours?

If you burn your candle for more than 4 hours at a time, carbon will collect on the wick, and your wick will begin to "mushroom." This can cause the wick to become unstable, the flame to get too large, your candle to smoke, and soot to be released into the air and around your candle container.

Why should candles only burn 4 hours?

If you burn your candle for more than 4 hours at a time, carbon collects on the wick, and it begins to “mushroom.” This causes the wick to become unstable, the flame gets too large and your candle smokes too much, which releases that dangerous soot into the air and all collects all around your candle container.

Where does the wax go when you burn a candle?

When candles burn, most of their matter goes into the air. The light and heat from a candle comes from the wax burning. When you light the wick, the flame causes some of the wax to melt, flow up the wick and evaporate, and then the wax vapor burns.

How do I stop my wick from curling?

Most wicks are designed to curl slightly so if a wick is pointing straight up and forming a carbon ball, help it out by bending the tip slightly to the side of the flame. You will see the carbon ball get burned up and then the wick should behave properly after the carbon ball burns away.

Is a candle wick supposed to turn black?

The most crucial step in getting your candle off to a good start? "Trim that wick!" Huber insists. ... "As the wick burns it becomes black and sooty by nature," Huber explains. "That soot will rise up when you re-light the wick." So to avoid finding yourself in a cloud of black smoke, trim the wick every time you light.

Is wick mushrooming bad?

The good news is, they aren't inherently harmful. Some candles form mushrooms every single burn, and the users don't even trim the wick. If you light one of these, you'll probably see a much larger flame until it's burned out because the carbon burns as additional fuel for the flame.

Can you use spaghetti as a wick?

But, if your candles are burning too low to reach the wick, there's no reason to go without your favorite scent. Instead of burning your fingers, light a piece of uncooked spaghetti. It'll reach into those deep candles and burn long enough to light the candles on grandpa's birthday cake!

Can you use a matchstick as a wick?

Just poke a hole down into the wax with a sharp instrument. Insert a match stick into the hole with the chemical head up. Light the match, and as it burns down, it will start to melt the wax. This liquid wax will soon wick up the burned stick just like a fiber candle wick.

How do you make a homemade wick?

How to Make a Candle Wick
  1. Step 1: Supplys. -scissors. -wax. -pliers. ...
  2. Step 2: Melting the Wax. First, cut the string to size. Then, melt the wax and soak the string in it. Finally, take out the string with the pliers and let the wick cool off.
  3. Step 3: Finshed. Once the string has cooled off, you can put it to use in a candle.

Why do my candles have sinkholes?

Sinkholes occur naturally from the process of the wax setting up. As wax is heated to melt it into liquid form, the wax expands literally taking up more space as it changes form from solid to liquid. ... This is the reasoning as to why sink holes can appear in your candles.