After 20 years of making candles and dealing with customers, you would think that NOTHING surprise me! Yet every week, something pops up that makes me rethink and assess my beliefs. The common sense aspect of candle making and burning is one of those aspects. I've come to realise you CANNOT assume that what you come to regard as 'common sense' and safe practice, is viewed the same way by all.
This article has been triggered by a comment made by a customer, who made herself some candles and subsequently burnt her home down, because 'the candles were not put on a heat proof surface and we should tell people!'
It's not that i assume people already know this, but because I am exposed to it so much and find it written everywhere, including on our website and on warning labels the we sell, it does surprise me greatly when i hear that somebody did not know they should do this.
So this article is here to spell out the 'MUST DO'S' of candle safety and burning.
Always place your candle on a plate or heat proof surface when burning. (It can and will scorch your furniture as it burns lower and if on fabric, can cause it to catch alight)
Always remove mushrooms from the wick before lighting and keep the wick trimmed before each burn. (the mushrooms can 'mini explode' and fly out of the glass on to the table. A wick that is not self trimming can double over and become a secondary ignition hazard)
Never leave the candle burning out of your sight. (Same reason as above. You need to be able to see an issue to stop the issue if one occurs)
Never leave the candle burning in a draft, near fabric like curtains, or around pets and children. (I've seen videos of candles burning in front of an open window with sheer curtains gently wafting in the breeze)
Always extinguish your candle towards the end of its life, leaving around 0.5 to 1 cm of wax in the bottom. (As the glass can get super heated the further the candle burns down, it is important to make sure the flame never reaches the bottom of the glassware)
Never double wick a container unless it is large enough and the flames are quite a distance from the edge and never just 'double wick' by using two of the same wick you would have used to single wick a container.
If you see soot on the top of your glass this is not a good sign.
A) the wick is too big
B) there is way too much fragrance or additives. If you made this candle, redo it. If you bought this candle, return it.