25 candle storage, use and safety tips
- Always store candles in a cool, dark, dry place. They should be stored flat to prevent warping.
- Keep candles away from bright outdoor light and indoor spotlights, to prevent fading.
- Refrigerate candles before using them, and they will burn more slowly and evenly. Wrap them plastic or foil before refrigerating them to prevent the wicks from absorbing moisture.
- Before a party or wedding, light and extinguish the candles. They’ll light more quickly and easily later.
- Keep candle wicks trimmed to 1⁄4 inch in length.
- When relighting a candle, never straighten the wick. It should be curved to burn properly.
- If a wick has become too short to light, carve away enough wax to expose the fresh wick, then trim 1⁄4 inch off the top of the candle and burn the candle to reform its appearance. (Tapers are an exception to this rule.)
- Keep the wax pool free of wick trimmings or other foreign matter that might present a fire hazard.
- Remove any label from the bottom of votive and pillar candles before using.
- Remove the metal tabs or clips from the bottom of votive candleholders before adding other candles.
- Add 1⁄8 inch of water to glass votive candleholders before inserting the candle to lessen the chance of breakage and to make the holder easier to clean.
- If the flame of a votive, pillar or container candle seems to small and is “drowning” in wax, extinguish it and pour the excess liquefied wax into a lined wastebasket.
- Keep candles out of drafts to prevent rapid and uneven burning, smoking and excessive dripping. With wax candles, “dripless” is a misnomer, and precautions should always be taken.
- Tapers may drip when burned inside glass hurricanes, globes or lamps due to the degree of heat that can develop inside. Provide ventilation at the base by slightly raising the glass; a penny works fine.
- Candles, especially tapers, burned close to one another will affect each other’s burning quality due to the combined heat. Keep this in mind when creating decorative arrangements. Tapers should be placed at least 3 inches apart.
- Extinguish candles when they burn down to within 2 inches of their holders or decorations. With jar, votive and other container candles, discontinue use when 1⁄2 inch of wax remains to prevent heat damage to surfaces and the container itself.
- When extinguishing candles, blow them out gently to avoid splattering liquefied wax, or use a snuffer. When blowing out a taper, hold your finger in front of the flame and blow at it. The air will flow around your finger and extinguish the candle from both sides.
- If an off-center wick is causing a candle to burn unevenly, simply move the extinguished wick to the center with a metal spoon handle while the wax is still soft.
- Clean solid candles with a piece of nylon, or use a touch of salad oil on a soft cloth.
- To remove wax from washable fabrics, scrape off excess wax, and pour boiling water through the material. Or place a towel over the wax, and run a hot iron on top of the towel; the wax will be absorbed into the towel.
- Remove wax from candleholders by running very hot water (or by pouring boiling water) over them.
- Always burn candles in or on proper candleholders or bases, and place them on protected, noncombustible, heat-resistant surfaces.
- Keep lighted candles out of the reach of children and pets.
- Avoid burning candles near combustible materials.
- Never leave a burning candle unattended.